At Deanery Synod last week, it was confirmed that Godshill Parish will now be part of the new grouping of churches in the South of the island, so that we can support one another in mission and encourage our churches to grow in depth, impact and number.
The Area Dean also mentioned that, although the 3 Society Parishes will be in different groupings, it is expected that they could still come together from time to time. +Norman has expressed his willingness to come to the island once lockdown is lifted, so it may be possible to do something jointly then.
We are not the only churches who will have an informal link across geographical partnerships with others of similar churchmanship, as a connection is being established between Mark Williams and his evangelical churches in Shanklin and Sandown and the people of St Paul’s Barton.
It is my hope that with an Anglo-Catholic presence in two different church partnerships on the island, this will give an opportunity for us to raise the profile of the richness of our tradition, and to demonstrate what we have to offer to the island and the Diocese as a whole. As +Norman said, we need to find our “value-added”!
Although we are, of course still in lockdown, and we will have to wait until that is lifted before we can meet to hold a PCC meeting face to face, please do start to have a think about what the strengths of our churches are. Dennis Owen, Alan Philpott or I would be very happy to hear about any ideas you might have about steps we could take to make the Diocesan Live Pray Serve mission strategy a reality in our churches.
I am very pleased to confirm that, once we are able to resume Public Worship, Fr Gregory will be able to restart his commitment to preside for us on 2nd Sundays in the month, starting on April 11th, travelling between St Alban’s and All Saints’ as before.
It remains to be seen when it will be possible for Messy Church to be able to start up again but, when it does, this will continue to be part of St Alban’s missional outreach into Upper Ventnor.
I do hope you have a blessed and rewarding Lent. I will continue to provide resources as we go through; and it is my hope that it will be possible to have a Parish mass at All Saints’ on Easter Day.
With my love and prayers,
The painting above is The Temptation of Christ by Juan de Flandes (1450–1519) painted circa 1500 and can be seen in the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC. Creative Commons CC0 License