Rejoice in the Lord you righteous, for it benefits the just to praise Him (Ps 33:1)
As we all settle into the year and our new routines, with schools open again and the economy opening up and people returning to work, I hope that you are finding your rhythm and making time for daily prayer and scripture reading. To all of you who are still in lockdown and isolation and struggling to overcome the impact of this pandemic on your daily lives, I encourage you to wait upon the Lord, He will see you through this.
It is important that I share with you what is happening in my ministry, as I serve you and it affects you. Your love and support and dedication to the service of Christ is what makes this possible at all and I do so appreciate you all.
As you are aware we are experiencing some financial challenges in the Diocese which has resulted in a short-term shortage of clergy. Due to restructuring – I will be the Priest in Charge at Merebank – St Michael’s and All Angels and at Isipingo – St James for the foreseeable future. Added to that, due to illness of the Rector, I will be Priest in Charge of Ezimbokodweni for the next six months. While I have self-supporting clergy there, it is still a big additional workload. I continue at Wentworth but have an Assistant Priest and a Retired Priest hard at work there. My Ministry will be rather different this year as we focus on restructuring.
Thus, I will be busy with Vestries in 6 Parishes over the next two months and therefore am limited in my ability to be at Good Shepherd.
I am grateful to Revd Peta who will take the lead role in leading services during this time. It does mean that some of the Services will need to be Morning Prayer services, and some will have Reserved Sacrament but either service is an adoration of our God, a means to seek His grace and a celebration of our life in Christ. Adjusting to have Morning Prayer as a Principal Sunday service is one of the outcomes of restructuring that is going to require adaptation from the churches. With three of the five Parishes that I oversee only having me as their priest, and the sixth having three churches and only two assistant priests, it is simply impossible to have Eucharist at every church every Sunday. Good Shepherd is fortunate to have Revd Peta to minister here. Adeela has taken a very big leadership role in terms of Sunday Worship, and she needs assistance. Prayerfully consider joining her in the Eucharistic Assistant team. We also need assistance in the Media Team. Zama has been doing a great job but going back to separate services for Good Shepherd and St Mary’s will require more help to put the services together.
Vestry will be held on 30 January. I do pray that we will have a good response to the call to leadership and that we will put together a progressive and dynamic council to lead Good Shepherd forward.
A very big thank you to the outgoing Council who has worked hard at every aspect of Church life throughout this trying time. I am most grateful to you all. Revd Peta will carry a bigger load in terms of Ministry as Parish Priest this year and needs your love and support to assist her in this . I remind you that she is a Retired Priest, and we are so grateful that she is so active in every aspect of ministry.
I hope to see more people returning to physical worship and that we will grow this year and serve God well in this place.
Be assured of my prayers for you all.
Love and Peace