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Message from the Rector – November

Last month, writing about St Francis and his quest for simplicity, integrity and discipline, I said that it is by such things that the Kingdom of Heaven is built. When Jesus was asked by his disciples how they might pray to God, his words, familiar thought they are to us, are full of powerful meaning, and perhaps we risk taking them for granted.

“Our Father, who art in Heaven … “ The opening line that we know so well contains within itself a surprise, the word Jesus actually used in Aramaic, ‘Abba’ is an intimate term, ‘Dad’ we might better translate it as, which is in marked contrast to the end of the formula, “hallowed be Thy name … “ The name of God to the Jews was a thing of power and deep holiness, at certain key moments in the Old Testament we find God himself holding back from disclosing it: as Moses encounters the burning bush on Mount Sinai and seeks a name he is told simply, ‘I am who I am …’ or perhaps, ‘I become who I am becoming … ‘in a way God is beyond naming because we name things and God is not so much a thing or a person, but the cause and source from whom all things and all people flow into existence. (more…)

Message from the Bishop of Hereford

Twenty years ago, there was an Archbishops’ Commission on Rural Areas which produced a report “Faith in the Countryside”. The issues that were raised then remain key ones now, though the urgency for some of the recommendations to be acted upon has become even greater. (more…)