Why bother resting?

Richard Briggs writes: Something strange happened when the Bible was split up into chapters: certain texts were bound together and others were suddenly thrust apart. The very first example of chapter division in Genesis raises some interesting questions, concerning what is now Gen 1:31 and Gen 2:1. The first three (or three and a half) verses … Continue Reading

Stillness, opportunity and the local church during the pandemic

Tim Murray writes: Like every other church, we (at Amblecote Christian Centre near Stourbridge) faced an unknown situation when the government started restricting large gatherings and it became clear that the pandemic was going to have a major impact on the shape of our lives. The unknown was not just ‘what we would do as a church’ but … Continue Reading

Ministry in this strange new land

Mark Ireland writes: Last night in my role as archdeacon I inducted a new Vicar to his new Lancashire parishes behind closed doors. Instead of a packed church of congregation, community and friends from previous parishes, there were just three churchwardens, the priest’s spouse, the patron and the bishop – all sitting spaced as far apart … Continue Reading

Should clergy count their days and hours?

A few days ago, Donald Allister, Bishop of Peterborough, wrote to his clergy and talked about self-management in relation to time keeping and time off. It has garnered some interesting reactions. This is the extract in question: Clergy Care In a number of dioceses, bishops have started instructing clergy to take two consecutive days off … Continue Reading

I’m really not busy…

Three times in the last week or so, I have received a communication from someone which says ‘I know you are very busy…’ and these have stuck in my mind. One of these said ‘I am sure you are very busy—I know that I am.’ A couple of things struck me immediately. The first, and … Continue Reading

Should clergy have Christmas day off?

Angela Tilby, Canon Emeritus of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, managed to upset just about everyone with her recent column on Christmas ‘family-olatry’ in the Church Times. Christmas’s falling on a Sunday this year is bound to be awash with family services. I have heard of clergy cancelling the regular eight o’clock, on the grounds that they … Continue Reading