For the last six months my time has been divided as I have served a half-time secondment as Interim Minister in the parish of Warblington with Emsworth, whilst continuing my ministry at Christ Church.
Warblington with Emsworth has two churches. Thomas à Becket, Warblington has very traditional services, so I have been singing Matins and Evensong.
St James, Emsworth is a busy church with lots going on. After my final service at Emsworth on 26th November the church hosted ‘drinks and nibbles’ to see me off. At this event several church members asked me to pass on their thanks to the congregation at Christ Church for doing without me for the time I have been away.
It would not have been possible for me to offer my time in this way without the great efforts of Max Cross, who was sent to us to serve as Interim Minister at Christ Church, and our ‘home team’ of Mark and Sandra. I am grateful to them for the support that they have given.
The other comment that many made to me is that the six months had passed by very quickly. Time passing quickly is a sensation that many of us experience. That feeling is exaggerated in December, when I often hear observations like, “I can’t believe that it’s nearly Christmas” or “Where did this year go?”.
There is no denying that it will soon be Christmas, but let’s not be too keen to get there too quickly. Advent is a reminder to take some time out to prepare for Christmas, perhaps by reflecting on why we celebrate and why God sent Jesus to be born on this earth.
I encourage you to find time for God in this busy month. If you can, then your celebration of Christmas will be the richer for it.
Revd Andy Wilson
Vicar, Christ Church Portsdown
Joint Area Dean, Havant
Chaplain, Havant & Waterlooville FC