First Word -May


HANDING ON THE FAITH During the year one of the prayers that is frequently offered in our worship is a prayer of thanksgiving for all those who through the centuries have handed on the faith to each generation down to our own. It includes our own parents, grandparents, great grandparents and beyond. It includes those who have taught us at school and those who have stood by us at moments of great joy and immense sadness. As I reflect back on my own ministry over 40 years I will have baptized approaching a 1000 individuals – mainly young babes in arms but also a number of adults who have come to faith. There is no decline in this area of ministry for parents coming to seek baptism for their children and expressing their desire to give thanks for the new life they have been privileged to bring into the world and to express their belonging to the family of Christians across the world who have committed themselves to follow Jesus Christ. Faith is an important waymarker on life’s journey enabling us to understand our place in the world and our relationship to all around us and to the meaning of life. Baptism is a beginning of our journey with God and to God and through that journey there are important waymarkers. One of those moments is when we as adults come to own our baptismal promises for ourselves in God’s gift of Confirmation and affirming before the church and those closest to us that this is our faith and the values that we seek to live by. As we draw near to the birthday of the church on Pentecost Sunday the 20th of May I invite all of those whom I have been privileged to baptize along with their parents to consider prayerfully whether now is the time for you to take on the responsibility of your baptismal promises in Confirmation – that moment of coming before the Bishop and to receive anew the gift of the Holy Spirit for our daily living. For any wishing to walk this way please get in touch with either myself or Fr. Richard or any of the churchwardens so that we may join in conversation and explore the faith together. Stuart Nairn.