Paxtonvic’s Blog

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5 a day is good for the soul

So, my attempt to visit every home in Little Paxton – at least ring on the door bell continues.

First thing to say is that I had got my maths wrong  – or perhaps underestimated how welcoming people would be. I kind of thought that I could visit 50 homes a day ( albeit a short visit) but of course often people welcome me in and what to talk about all sorts of things. The riots of the past few days has been top of the agenda of late but many people have their own particular  stories to share. I even got stuck into a game of Rummikub on Sunday over some stimulating conversation about pretty important matters.

So, now, I can’t visit 50 home a day… more likely 5 so the adventure will stretch beyond August.  We all know that over stretched parish clergy cant do basic visiting all the time and maybe in reality can only visit those who need urgent help when say bereavement care is needed or someone is poorly. But maybe more time needs to be made for getting to know who actually lives in your parish and finding out what they really think of the church in a community.

Sometimes at meeting we often talk ( nicely of course) about what those who dont come to church are like and might want from their parish church…. why not go out and actually ask them?    Many  parishes have a visiting team which can augment the work of the local clergy…. but more than once people have said to me   “they had never had a visit from the church before” by which they mean the Vicar. A lay person just doesnt feel the same to some.

Its easy to talk about other people and wonder what they are like and what makes them tick. It can be scarry to actually make contact with those you dont know – but the rewards in terms of understanding a fellow human being are immense – and maybe even learning something about ourselves.

Which leads me to thinking about the riots and the people ( some not so young) who have been involved with them. The cabinet are meeting today to talk about it, Radio 5 is endlessly talking about it,  many I meet talk about it  and ” them” – the out of control individuals who did such awful things. But who is taking time to actaully talk to ” them” and find out what drives them to violence?

” They” are actually human beings, many of whom I suspect have grown up in pretty bad domestic situations where respect for themselves and others and their property has been  low on the agenda. Maybe some just lost any sense of what is right and wrong and joined a mob with the thrill of getting something for nothing ( no excuse)…. but here I am now talking about “them”without knowing any of them at all.Sadly , I will be sticking to visiting in my patch and wont be venturing into some of our cities troubled areas. I hope and pray there are people whowill be taking the time and trouble to try to befriend these people. Afer all  they are God’s children too – would He give up on them and condemn them as scum?

August 11, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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