The Rector Writes
After a succession of poor weather summers, thankfully this year we have the benefit of a break from this pattern with a good weather summer. And it is amazing the amount of positivity that has resulted from this. It is noticeable how much more upbeat and cheerful peoples’ moods have been. It is also noticeable that more people have been motivated to get out and about walking, running and cycling with all the positive benefits both physical and psychological that these activities bring. Let us hope that there positives remain long after our normal autumnal and winter weather patterns resume.
As we head into the month of September, many other patterns also resume. Those with school-going children will be back to the familiar round of school runs, pack lunches and home-work supervision – not to mention the various other extra-curricular activities. Those have to commute to work will find their travel times greatly increased as traffic volumes increase. However, for some, this time of the year is when they like to take their main holiday as the more popular holiday resorts begin to quieten down after the main summer peak. But the majority of our parish organisations are looking forward to commencing their new season with renewed vigour and all of them would welcome new members.
One of the traditional early September events in our Tullow calendar is our joint open-air Service with the parishioners of Kilternan, followed by a bring-your-own barbeque at the home of Mr Frank Johnson by his kind invitation. This year the event will take place on Sunday 8th September commencing at 12:00noon. Each year it provides an opportunity to worship and praise God in an informal, but meaningful, Service and to join in fellowship afterwards in stunning surroundings. There are also planned activities for the young and young-at-heart. I would therefore encourage everyone to mark the date in their calendars and make it the memorable occasion it deserves to be.
As most of us were enjoying our summer breaks, there seems to be little signs of a break from the bad news stories making our headlines. The ongoing situation in Syria shows no sign of reaching any kind of a peaceful or agreeable resolution any time soon. In fact, in the aftermath of a suspected chemical weapons attack on a largely civilian area of Damascus, there is now the very real possibility of international intervention in some shape or description which will only have limited support from members of the United Nations at best. Before any such intervention should take place, every step should be taken to ensure the lessons of intervention in Afghanistan and Iraq have been learned and taken into consideration. Coupled with this, the unfolding situation in Egypt is cause for great concern. The entrenched sectarianism within the various political and military power structures means that finding a quick and peaceful solution to the country’s problems will be very difficult indeed. However, every effort must be made at all levels within the international community to seek resolutions to the problems in both Syria and Egypt as the stability of the entire Middle East, in not the whole world, is dependent on such resolutions being found. Let us pray that the various parties to these conflicts will listen to those who are trying to broker peace. Let us also remember in our prayers all those who have been caught up in these conflicts. Losing homes, livelihoods and loved ones and facing into another winter of hardship in refugee camps without basic medicines and sanitation or facing lengthy spells of false imprisonment in inhumane conditions.
With every blessing,
The Rev’d John Tanner, ph. 2893154 or 086 3021376