Rev Valerie Ott's Letter (our Interim Moderator)

Dear Friends,

The other day I was out walking the dog when I heard the beating of wings and a great honking from above as a skein of geese flew overhead. I walked on thinking about geese and the way that they operate as a flock. Geese are well-known for flying in a V formation. This is to give streamlining and to help each other in the flight. It is more difficult at the front so the lead goose changes from time to time. The honking geese are at the back and they honk encouragement to the ones at the front. If one goose gets ill and has to drop out, then two other geese will break away from the flock to accompany the ill goose. This means that you never see a goose on its own.

I walked along thinking about all this and what we, as humans, and as the church, can learn from geese about working together and supporting one another. And then suddenly I heard a flapping of wings and some honks and one solitary goose flew over my head.

Well, that rather put paid to my theory. But then it occurred to me that perhaps this solitary goose indicated that we could actually learn even more from geese that I had first thought.

As a church, we need one another. St Paul said in 1st Corinthians chapter 12 that we are all part of the body of Christ and we all have our own part to play.  But, as Christians, we also need some time to be alone with God. Christianity is a religion for which the worshipping community is very important. But it is also a personal religion. It is about our own personal relationship with God through Christ.

The period of Lent which begins this year on March 1st is a time especially when we think about our own personal relationship with God.

It is a time when people may pray more, and deny themselves of the mundane comforts of life to focus on the things of eternity. There are details of things happening in this church during Lent in the newsletter which I commend to you.  I would also encourage you during Lent to spend more time individually with God in your own personal reflections, maybe to spend a greater time in personal prayer and Bible Study. And as we walk more closely with Christ during this time, we also experience more fully the glory which is Easter morning.

Wishing you every blessing

Val