Thursday, July 26, 2012


Wednesday 25th July 2012
The next day was, indeed, different; and culminated with the Confirmation of four young candidates and one adult at St Aidan's Thockrington, a very small church over a thousand years old in the "middle of nowhere" which was packed.  The youngest member of the congregation was five and the oldest had been baptised in this very church 97 years ago.  The Bishop said that faith meant going straight through the centre of life and living it to the full.  I hope that my young candidate  will always have the faith to persevere, not to be tempted to skirt round the edges or to avoid tackling difficulties.  I pray that she will be aware of God's support as she plays her part in changing the world for the better  --  which is what Christian commitment is all about.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Damp again

Tuesday 24th July 2012
"I can see you!"
Dull weather with slight drizzle helped me to resist spending time outside and enabled me to spend the morning working in my study.
And the afternoon.
And the evening.
Tomorrow will be different.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Confirmation rehearsal

Monday 23rd July 2012
On the way to St Aidan's Thockrington
The morning was spent making further preparations for the Deanery pilgrimage with a break for coffee when a Churchwarden called (for a signature on a cheque for Communion wafers).  In the afternoon I drove to Hexham and Corbridge for some necessary shopping.  Then in the evening we had a rehearsal at the little church which can just be seen straight ahead in the picture above.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

St Mary Magdalene

Sunday 22nd July 2012
Baptism cake for a farmer's son
     A few of the invited guests had to continue with silage making.  But all the godparents were there, starting as they meant to go on.  I hope they will remember to be in touch with their godson every year on 22nd July to celebrate the anniversary of his baptism and remind him of God's love for him.  Jesus, the Risen Christ, is always with him even when he doesn't realise it.
     Mary Magdalene didn't recognise Jesus in the garden outside the empty tomb until he spoke to her.  He calls you by name in the tone of voice that is right for you. Be ready to receive his reassurance calming you or his encouragement supporting you  or his energy prompting you to action.
     The baby looked blissfully surprised when I marked the sign of the cross on his forehead in oil and was totally calm when I poured the water of baptism.
     P.S.  The cake was delicious with a carrot cake layer and a chocolate layer.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Hay at last?

Saturday 21st July 2012
Cutting a hayfield
Some sun and a breeze with the forecast of a few fine days are enough to prompt this action.  Let's hope that the weather remains fair so that the grass dries well enough to make hay or at least silage.

Molly is lame

Friday 20th July 2012

     Molly is lame, the computer won't insert a picture and we're stuck again.  I'm hoping the farrier may come and inspect Molly's feet to see if it's laminitis caused by too much lush grass.
     If so, we're the latest caualty of this year's weather.  As I go around the parishes, I meet shepherds who have been unable to clip (Northumbrian for shear the sheep) because the fleeces are rain-sodden, farmers who have lost cold sheep to pneumonia, farmers who have been unable to get machinery onto the water-logged fields to make silage  --  still less, hay  --  as well as caterers whose outside events have been cancelled, guest houses with no guests, tourist facilities with no tourists and shop keepers whose customers, being all of those I've just mentioned, have no money to go shopping.
     The Church, represented in the community by the parish priest, is here to offer support and encouragement, to bring these lives before God in prayer and to provide practical help wherever we can  -- as long as we're asked for what's needed.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Church Fair

Saturday 14th July 2012
The Samba Band set the atmosphere
Playing as the rain starts (and audience listen from a distance under cover)
Now in the pouring rain, but nothing dampens the spirits

Monday, July 16, 2012

Never give up

Monday 16th July 2012
Amazing!  I think the photograph has actually been published.  It's time to start thinking about going to bed rather than getting dug into catching up with six weeks' news.    Perhaps I'll manage a proper blog tomorrow.  Thank you for visiting my blog despite the boring posts here over the last few weeks.

Thursday, July 5, 2012


Thursday 5th July 2012

     In preparing for this evening's Deanery Synod, I have produced a final version of the notes from the event on Faith and the Future of the Countryside, our Churches' response.  This is now going on to the Events page.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

New letters after my name

Wednesday 4th July 2012

     I had requested the payment of a cheque that I had to pass on to somebody else.  "Please send it to Susan Ramsaran a.s.a.p." i had written and I was pleased to find a cheque in this morning's post.  It was a surprise to find it made out to "Susan Ramsaran a.s.a.p." but luckily the local bank made no fuss; so I simply banked it and made out a corresponding cheque to the correct recipient.