Wedding Cake and Crossroads

IMG_9373When is an Induction of a Synod Moderator like a wedding? The answer could be when there is a cake to be cut as there was when Jacky Embrey was inducted as the Moderator of the Mersey Synod on Saturday September 7th at the Bridge Chapel Centre, Liverpool. It could be when the service spontaneously becomes a celebration and becomes the beginning of a relationship in which the partners commit themselves to a shared future. Representatives of the Synod, together with ecumenical _MG_9364guests, spoke energetically about dreaming dreams and fulfilling visions. The church can sometimes seem intent on viewing the road ahead through the rear view mirror and wonders why it then makes some wrong turns. The conversation over the sandwiches as well as in the music and the words were about the future and we can only hope that remains the direction of travel.

One unexpected ecumenical gen was offered by the Rt. Revd Tom Williams from the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Liverpool who, while complimenting the preacher, wondered if we should be inviting people of other denominations to play a bigger part in such services.

After a quick trip along the M62 to Hipperholme on the outskirts of Halifax it was more ecumenical activity on Sunday for the anniversary of Christ Church, a Methodist/United Reformed Church LEP. This is a relationship that IMG_9382remains strong and where the partners are eager to keep alive their vision of serving the local community. The building stands on a busy cross roads and if some of our conversation reflected the feeling of standing on the edge there is a commitment to be strong and courageous and to be a faithful witness to the people of Hipperholme. The gem on this occasion came from the children who in thinking about the anniversary reported that church was not the building but the people IMG_9378and that we are all a team. Things happen when we work to support and encourage one another.

Next weekend it will be Wrexham and churches from across North Wales. I have no doubt that there will be other gems to share!

David Grosch-Miller

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