In this house… Bishops’ News, December 2017

In the Bishops’ Office is a wall hanging gifted some years ago.  It reads:

We are real
We make mistakes
We say I’m sorry
We are crazy
We are silly
And have lots of fun
We give hugs
We give second chances
We forgive
And laugh a lot
We love and have respect for each other

Here’s a special Christmas version from us to you, which +Ellie has written:

We are real
We enjoy the invitations and fellowship of the angels
We do crazy journeys that make no human sense
But we say YES in trust and obedience to God.
We give and receive incredibly generous gifts
And we willingly leave everything to seek and follow Jesus.
We do all this imperfectly
And therefore with love and grace for each other
Knowing that in this divine family
We are perfectly loved by our matua God –
And we are trying to love perfectly too,
Which is why we need to listen to the angels
Telling us not to be afraid.

(Download a nicer looking version here!)

I (Justin) am beginning the transition back into Diocesan life prior to our arrival home on Christmas Eve. Jenny and I and a group from Anglican Youth Ministries have spent the last few weeks in India. This has been both traumatising and inspiring and I’m looking forward to sharing some of the stories of our time away with you all. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Ellie for all her hard work over this period which has allowed us a time of refreshment and renewal for the next season. I’d also like to thank her, Tim and her boys for taking on the adventure of a new season. On their return from the UK they will begin a season of intentional missional living in community with young people located in and around Victoria University with the aim of developing our future leadership and catalysing the broad team of mission and ministry units called into the university environment. When Ellie returns we will be spending a period in retreat and following that we look forward to sharing our thoughts around the year ahead for our episcopal leadership and our wider diocesan family.

May you experience Christ deeply this season; incarnated in the disorderliness of transition, endings and new beginnings, in the messiness of human relationships and frailties, knowing that each of us are perfectly loved.

In Christ,

+Justin and +Ellie