What a full and diverse day I have had! The parish was privileged to have our Bishop celebrate gently and humbly in our midst this morning; and then to have "low breakfast" with us...croissants and coffee and various forms of Spring Gully jams! (South Australians are nothing if not parochial)
+J was good, and I think none of us would have left feeling anything but encouraged by his words and insights. I say to people...we come when the Bishop comes to allow our Bishop to exercise his ministry to us. I think he did that this morning.
I like how he affirmed that the Anglo-Catholic presence is a legitimate expression of what the Anglican Church is like.
I did however have to "go away" to anoint the dying....who subsequently had treatment removed and, thank God, died graciously and well. He was a fine and intelligent man.
Then my friend G came to the 5 p.m. Mass. He too is a fine man, he is a humble man aware of his limitations; and I don't think it is my job to manipulate people to come to Church. He is smarter than that! He came because he joins us in friendship, at Craft Group, and at the Drop-In Centre.
The Mass went better than last week and then I went and chatted to people in the lane (dinner was 10 mins late....a big ask for people who don't have food!) some were under the weather a number were wary of the priest....but I reckon I can wear that....and indeed ride it out....and hopefully develop some trust from them.
I have seldom, if ever, felt so alive as priest as I do today.
I prayed with some care for S & P who were married today. Some who know, and some (like N & P) who have known us for 20 years, would understand that this was not without significance. I wish S well and pray for her life together with another.
Tonight I said Mass at 5 particularly praying for the Drop-In Centre. I chatted to a number: A vulnerable couple ( who I later witnessed shoutingat each other in the street what seemed like the scream of desperation...don't leave me alone); and a couple of really angry people...and why wouldn't you be...the rich couldn't give a stuff about the poor and are happy to blame and victimise them. I did NOT vote for the Liberal government! (Or for that matter for a Labor Gogernment)
And my friend G!(spoken of above)....who is a damn sight more intelligent than the world gives him credit for just spoke kindly to me about what he could do.
It has been a full, difficult day. I am humbled....NOT humiliated, at being allowed the privilege (totally undeserved) of being a servant of Jesus...my buddy. And we have the same Dad!