9 November 2011

So tired

We've reached that point in the term when life seems hard. The mornings are dark, the evenings are dark. Even Cambridge has succumbed to a blanket of drizzle reminiscent of the greyest Lancaster days. Work is piling up around my ears: supervision essays, pastoral portfolio, dissertation, reading. It feels like everything else gets squeezed as a result. Family time, play time, prayer time, downtime. No time! 

And that's why I'm so tired. It's not the fact that LittleLanky isn't in a very settled sleep pattern at present (though that doesn't help), it's the fact that every minute of the day is accounted for, and nothing ever seems to get done. Justice can't be done to any given task, even if we stay up late every night to work on whatever thing is next in the list. We can barely wash and dry enough clothes to see us through the week.

I know that this will pass. It did at this time last year. 

It helps to have a clear purpose, and now my curacy is signed and sealed, that purpose is clearer than ever.

I'm taken back to our days of mountain biking in the Lake District, where hills are hills! On a really severe incline, you just have to push on. You concentrate on the next revolution of the pedals, and the next breath. You know that's all you can do. You can't turn back, you just have to put your head down and get on with it. That's where we are now. 

As advent approaches, and the exciting prospect of Christmas with a two year old becomes a reality, this grey time will be a memory, but for now it's real, and I felt I needed to record it here. I hope I haven't brought you all down too.

6 November 2011

Another milestone

Today in the Parish of St Mary Magdalene in Clitheroe, an announcement was made which referred to me.

I was named as the new curate of the parish, who will be taking up his post after ordination as a Deacon at the end of June next year (all being well).

Of course, this wasn't a surprise for me. We've been moving towards today's announcement for some time, and just had to wait for certain formalities before announcements could be made.

The church building (pictured above) is the Parish Church for the town (pictured below as seen from the slopes of Pendle (see the picture at the bottom for a view of Pendle from a neighbouring church)). Rather than tell you what I think about it (from a relatively short visit), you should probably take a look at the website I've linked in the first paragraph.

Both DrLanky and I are very happy about the news. Clitheroe is a lovely town, and the parish seems like a perfect fit for us. The Priest in charge of the parish is a former student of Westcott House, and we seem to get on very well. The only slightly troublesome thing is that he and I share Christian names, as do our wives! I suspect there will be a degree of confusion in PCC minutes, magazines, newspapers etc... All good fun!

One thing we don't know about yet concerns housing. As the parish has not had a curate in the last couple of years, there is no house for us yet. The Diocese plans to buy something for us, and we'll have to wait and see what they suggest. At least this way we know that a house will be bought with our needs in mind.

Today feels like a significant step to me. Of course coming away to theological college was a fairly significant step on a personal level, but until today I've been fairly anonymous. Today marks a significant milestone in my life and vocation as what our Principal would call a 'public Christian' - someone who represents Christ and the Church. Of course, that journey will have more significant steps to come (not least ordination), but today still feels significant. In a small market town in Lancashire, a number of people now know that we'll be there in the summer. I hope they're excited; I am.