Weekly Check-in (43)

Happy Friday! It’s VE day, a bank holiday and also my Mum’s birthday!

The sun is shining, a socially distanced street party will be happening later on and after that we will be having a birthday party for my Mum over Zoom!

I would give this week a 7/10. It’s had some low points, but overall, things seem to be improving.

It’s coming to the end of my second week of furlough and, although I never thought I would, I am starting to get used to it. There have been occasions when I have felt lost or bored or useless, but I am trying to get up on time and manage 100 hours of reading over the four weeks. I find that having a target, as unrealistic as it is turning out to be, really helps!

In terms of reading, this week I finished The Divine Dance by Richard Rohr, The PCC Member’s Essential Guide by Mark Tanner and I am ploughing through Searching For Sunday by Rachel Held Evans. These are three very different books, and each is wonderful in it’s own way.

The picture at the top gives an insight into my week. As the weather has been so nice, I have done lots of reading whilst lying on blanket in the garden. I have also had lots of video chats; with other furloughed curates, with both sides of the family, with our friends John & Ash, with our goddaughter and with my Cell Group.

I am enjoying this season of quiet before we start our new jobs and move house, and I am especially loving spending so much time with Nathan (see my blog from yesterday). I am cooking more and cleaning the sink lots – Mrs Hinch would be so proud! I am re-watching The Crown on Netflix and in the evenings, Nathan and I are making the most of Disney+, from old classics like The Sword in the Stone to the recent remake of Aladdin.

The weekly star is Sam, who brought round a gift bag of goodies, including a bottle of wine, a face mask, bubble bath, chocolates, a book and a tub of pringles! I am very grateful, and absolutely intend on making the most of these during the rest of furlough!

This week marks the end of Nathan’s ministry in Formby. On Tuesday night, over Zoom, he will be licenced as Vicar of St Giles and he will start his new ministry working remotely from Formby until lockdown is lifted enough that we can move house. His last Sunday is this weekend, and as the cards, gifts and phonecalls have started coming this week, it’s starting to feel a bit more real. It’s a very strange way to begin a new ministry, but we are not living in normal times, are we?!

A couple of days after my furlough ends, I will also be licenced as vicar. In normal circumstances, I would serve three months notice, finish my curacy and have two weeks to move house before taking on the new role. The reality is that this change looks nothing like that, but as I said before, we are not living in normal times.

I do, however, have a month to get my head out of one place and into another. That is a huge blessing, as strange as it may be. I am discovering that, although I wouldn’t have chosen to do things this way, furlough is doing me the world of good. I am hoping that come the end of the month, I will arrive (legally, if not physically) as the new vicar of Church of the Good Shepherd refreshed, focussed and ready to see what God is doing in Croxteth and Norris Green.

More next week x

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