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There are Many Types of Meetings - 16/04/2023

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Would I have the courage if preaching on Easter Sunday to stand and announce, “He is risen, Amen,” and then sit down? I do not think so. On Maundy Thursday, I went to the Chrism Service at St Albans; Rev’d Jairo and Rev’d Peter were there as well. After the service, there was time to catch up and collect blessed oils. It was an uplifting service. The Bishop of Bedford, Rt Revd Richard Atkinson, gave the sermon, speaking of an exceedingly difficult meeting in Dunstable, regarding the changing use of the Palace Hotel. The bishop had doubts about hosting the meeting with opposing groups, considering the anger and fear of the people attending. However, he felt it was right to host a meeting with such deep divisions “to be in the thick if it”, for it to be a place of welcome. We have all been there, having difficult meetings with family, work, church etc. and Covid saw the rise of zoom meetings! Sometimes we feel there are too few, or too many, meetings. Meetings may take different forms. When my family have a meal together for birthdays, anniversaries, other events they are informal meetings; we catch up, have discussions in events that are happening, we agree and disagree on topics, or just enjoy each other’s company. Meetings, such as Bible studies or Alpha courses are ideal for exchanging ideas. There you are learning together with a richness of opinions, ones that may confuse or challenge us. Whatever meeting you attend, do we have the courage ‘to be in the thick if it’ for those difficult meetings?

Janna Bond

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