Wednesday, 30 May 2012

The Archbishop views a decade

This week, in a newspaper article, the Archbishop of Canterbury reflected on the changes he felt had taken place in Britain since the last Jubilee in 2002.  His tone, as always, was measured and thoughtful.  His conclusion, which we may or may not share, is that we have become a more anxious and confrontational people since the economic downturn. 

Rowan Williams is a man usually given to writing in long sentences!  Yet his prayer for us as a nation was summed up in one word in the article: that we might become more ‘generous’ in the way we treat each other. 

Well it rang a bell with me.  Generosity of spirit improves, and can even redeem, any relationship.  In family, community and church life it’s great to encounter generous people who give willingly of themselves, act as encouragers, believe the best and think of the whole rather than simply protect their vested interest. 

So I think the Archbishop made a perceptive and timely critique – I know I could do with being a more generous person at times.  Indeed I have a sneaky suspicion that when I have deliberately adopted such a frame of mind good things have unexpectedly happened – the Spirit at work I think.

Well this coming weekend is an opportunity for us to be generous in our appreciation of The Queen – so perhaps a good way of ending this blog is to print the special prayer commissioned by St Paul’s Cathedral to mark this truly significant moment in our country’s life:

God of time and eternity,
whose Son reigns as servant, not master;
we give you thanks and praise
that you have blessed this Nation, the Realms and Territories
with Elizabeth
our beloved and glorious Queen.
In this year of Jubilee,
grant her your gifts of love and joy and peace
as she continues in faithful obedience to you, her Lord and God
and in devoted service to her lands and peoples,
and those of the Commonwealth,
now and all the days of her life;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

With best wishes,

ps – On Thursday we have an important Church Members Meeting to discuss a way forward with the Constitution and then on Sunday The Revd Elsie Howell will be leading morning worship.

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