This time two weeks ago I was overwhelmed. The forthcoming three weeks were packed with things going on. In the first week there were two in-house retreats, a governor sub committee meeting, meetings for my diocesan job and a day and a half at the diocesan Heads of RE Conference, which I was asked to attend. On the first Saturday I had two meetings with my diocesan hat on and finally on Sunday I got to enjoy my most favourite of pastimes, and sit in an armchair.
While it was nice to have a heavy week out of the way, there was still more to come. The second week started with the funeral of our much loved Michael. As funerals go, it was beautiful, it was very ‘Mike’, and while Christ’s victory over the cross was the theme that ran through the service at the crematorium, it was still immensely sad, for we don’t have him any more.
Tuesday, Thursday and Friday saw me at St George’s Cathedral with three lots of Year Eights for a day of reflection, giving them a chance to know about the mother church of the diocese. Tuesday evening there was a summer concert, Wednesday a new parents evening, Thursday was the first night of the parish Baptism course and Friday evening, having been at the cathedral all day, I was back there for a retirement Mass. Saturday was the induction day for the new diaconate students, at Wonersh.
I’ve still got a busy week next week, I have a Day of Prayer, a diocesan youth conference and two whole days on a school trip to the Battlefields of France and Belgium. But how do I feel now? Undaunted, nothing like two weeks ago, and here’s why.
One constant throughout the past fortnight has been the constant prayer, prayers to say ‘thank you Lord’, prayers to say ‘over to you Lord’, prayers for strength, and prayers to stop me getting unnecessarily tetchy. I think if prayers were biscuits I’d have put on half a stone.
This morning at Mass, I proclaimed the Gospel, the final line of the reading, although I had prepared it, hit me right between the eyes at I said the words out loud ‘Come to me all who labour and are overburdened……..for my yoke is easy and my burden light’. I had not been overburdened, but I had a lot on, more than I could articulate without being so boring I’d not want to read it myself. But I had turned to Jesus, and he helped me, and as I read those words, he pointed this out to me, and how I wish everyone I knew would do the same.