It's been a week of illness, death, and meetings, meetings, and more meetings.
The death of a good man, who I baptised and anointed two minutes before he died found me weeping with the family - very unprofessional - and the event had a profound effect on me. This is ministry in the raw, and what I was ordained for, but modern ministry tends to be more about meetings, and minutes and paperwork and forms to fill in.
Not that some of this week's meetings were unproductive. I'm in charge of a parish that wants to grow and reach out to others, in service definitely, but also with the offer of a place of quiet and serenity in the High Street. We want to share the riches we have and provide opportunities for God's grace to be found outwith our Sunday "love-in".
I know it's jargon, but there is desire to be a more "mission shaped" congregation, and that's been high on the agenda of this week's meetings. Not that we are are "anti-mission" shaped at the moment. Our hall is full to bursting at times with folk from everywhere in the town, our Sunday numbers remain constant even as we lose folk either in death or because it is time for them to move on. In many ways we have been a "growing congregation" for some time now, and new folk are always being added to our number.
However, now that all the building and restoration work is over, our minds are being focused on why we did all that stuff in the first place! It was for the Glory of God, yes, but also because we wanted to share that Glory, and have all the resources to share the love of God with others in an unconditional way. Various plans and ideas are underfoot to do the business now in a way that is not burdened by builders, architects and dreams of wood, nails and cement.
Just when I thought the meetings were over, I'm suddenly aware that tomorrow is Diocesan Synod, and a wander through Canon Law, statistics and reports. There will be moments of laughter and the chance to catch up, and of course all eyes will be on our Bishop Elect, together with an eagerness to listen to what he has in store for us.
At home, Toastie is recovering a bit, as his pills seem to be reducing the fluid in his lungs, the cat has gone out and returned on several occasions, and the RW even attended the opera last night with several readers of the Scottish Sun. Freebie seats are not to be sniffed at! Me? I was at a meeting!