It strikes me that the mystery of a Whodunit plot lingers a little longer in a book rather than on the screen. That’s because it’s often one of the really famous actors in the cast line up who ends up as the murderer. That was at least half true on Sunday evening with Julia Sawalha (of Lark Rise to Candleford fame) being in on the act. The moment I saw her I thought she was too significant an actor just to be the housekeeper (oh what an exciting life I lead!).
In any walk of life our attention is often drawn to the so called ‘important’ people – the movers and shakers, the up-front and in the limelight sort – and that’s probably as it should be because every movement or organisation needs leadership and inspiration. However, no society could exist with just such a thin veneer of people. The unsung folk who work hard behind the scenes are essential.
I thought that point was made rather beautifully in Westminster Abbey’s recent service commemorating the Coronation. Sixty years ago that theatre in which the crowning took place was crowded out by earls and viscounts but today we are a much more egalitarian society so the Dean and Chapter devised a service in which the anointing oil was brought to the altar by a procession that included not only a High Court judge but also a Lollypop lady resplendent in her fluorescent yellow jacket – it seemed to make the Duke of Edinburgh smile but I hope it also made the rest of us think. A society like ours is made the richer by the contribution of all its citizens.
This week at Amersham Free Church we have been giving thanks for our Time for God volunteer, Juliane – who is soon to leave us and return to Germany after ten splendid months of Christian service in our church and town. Julian has been a joy to have around – her quiet faithfulness has been an inspiration to us all. She has not taken the limelight yet her contribution has been so appreciated by so many groups that we are all threatening to steal her passport so she can stay a little longer with us! Juliane you have been a great blessing to us all and you return to your home and family with our love and grateful thanks.
So, when you watch the next Whodunit my advice is to look out for that famous actor – it will probably be them. And next time you are in church and are served with a cup of tea and a smile, or see someone putting up the tables or sweeping the floor, pause to thank that person for the contribution they offer to our life together.
With best wishes – and hopes for a dry Saturday for this weekend’s Church Garden Party!