Moderators and partners were spending the weekend in Bristol – a weekend of unexpected surprises. We knew it was Banksy’s home city but were surprised at how much street art there is in the city – Banksy and many others. Most of us didn’t know Bristol has hosted Street Art Festivals attracting famous artists from all over the world. Where would you find an angel with a paint pot on its head? As a Doctor Who fan, I wasn’t expecting to discover the perfect way to defeat his enemies, the Weeping Angels – upturn a paint pot on its head! Here was one I made earlier – found in the Bristol museum. My next GA moderator visit – to Abingdon would have an even bigger surprise for a Doctor Who fan!
Trinity, Abingdon was the church which so impressed and excited me, that here was a traditional church, a local ecumenical partnership with Methodists, with neither fuss nor special projects, whose ministry seemed a natural and spontaneous expression of their faith – a faithful people serving faithfully their Lord Jesus in Abingdon. On the Saturday, I led a seminar entitled “Alive and Still Kicking” to look at ministry among elderly folk. It ended up as teaching Granny to suck eggs, as this congregation has much invaluable experience of ministry to AND from the elderly. As we become more and more a society of geriatrics – we have much to learn from those churches that have found how to live the Gospel with older folk but in a multigenerational way.
I have known Ian and Tabitha Griffiths for a few years, originally meeting in Northumberland over coffee and the Doctor Who conversation of three fanatics! Suddenly I was presented with the most unbelievable co-incidence imaginable. I discovered that the very episode on TV that Saturday night was written by the son of Trinity’s secretary. He is Mike Barrett, a now acclaimed script writer, and the super episode, “Knock, Knock”, featured human-eating woodwork. I wasn’t expecting that!
With minister Ian Griffiths and wife, Tabitha and not a Dalek in sight