Well, I have been serving in the Parish of St Paul’s, Coven for two weeks now, and they have certainly been busy ones! I suppose the beginning of anything new can be a bit daunting. The first day of school, for example, or going up to the ‘big’ school. I must say that, unlike those experiences, the people of Coven have been so very friendly and welcoming. I feel honoured to come among you as your ‘parson’ and join in what is so evidently a thriving Christian tradition in the village. I have been going around doing Epiphany House Blessings – this is a very ancient practice in the Church and goes back to one of the main themes of Epiphany, the baptism of Christ. The word itself is a Greek one which means ‘the making plain or revealing of something divine’. It also has the energy of the idea of ‘something that cannot be hid’. This is no ‘hole in corner’ event which one might miss. It is to Christians, of course, the birth of Jesus whom we call the Christ, the anointed one. So with the Nativity accounts of the shepherds, the wise men and the star, still, as it were, echoing in our minds, we press on in the Church year to the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist.
I look forward to meeting many of you in the weeks to come. I am still finding my way around, but I did find my way to the fish and chip shop the other night. Excellent!