Coping with loss

‘We’re in the funeral generation now,’ I said as we walked away from having said goodbye to Elizabeth. A kinder person you couldn’t have wished to have known. Jane and I have been to more funerals in the last three months than in the past three years (and that’s without Read more…

Coping with change

‘Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes, Turn and face the strange’. In my last job I was (and knew I was) very fortunate to work alongside people who were supportive, encouraging and had a default answer of ‘yes’. The last three years have been a stark reminder that not everyone else is like that! Coping Read more…

Plan B

Malvern. Nestling in the foot of the hills that bear its name, the town has been a place of holiday and sanctuary on many occasions. And this time was no different. As we drove up the M5, the Malvern Hills waved at us from between the passing trees, giving greetings Read more…

Into the valley

Into the valley of Death    Rode the six hundred. It seems somewhat foolish to being calling it ‘Freedom Day’. With a third Covid wave charging onward, Tennyson’s famous lines have for me found a very uncomfortable echo in the lifting of restrictions in England on 19 July. Not though Read more…

Waiting

I wonder what the word waiting means for you? Waiting for a bus can mean the difference between arriving composed or agitated. Whether it’s at the dentist’s or the hospital, the ‘Waiting Room’ is rarely a restful place. Waiting for a phone call or a visit can stop us from Read more…

No Dogs Please

Daisy the Vicarage Dog is great with people. The six-year-old cocker spaniel can often be seen around the villages with the local vicar. She loves pastoral visiting and is greatly admired in return (Daisy that is – the vicar is too, of course). And yet, despite having lived with many Read more…

Walk on By

Many have said we live in strange times. Not least perhaps are some familiar phrases we can no longer use: ‘Is this seat taken?’, ‘May I join you?’ The ‘elbow bump’ has usurped the handshake. The ‘distance hug’ an inadequate replacement for the security and warmth of being held. Two’s Read more…

Back to normal?

“What’s the difference between a Christian and a non-Christian?” asked the young enquirer. “About ten years,” replied the vicar with characteristically dry wit. Despite often being at the forefront of social change and community action, the church is often seen as being behind the times and, sadly, it doesn’t take Read more…