|LETTER FROM YOUR CURATE
What a wonderful occasion it was to return to St Marys’ Tetbury on Sunday 4th July to celebrate the Eucharist. Amidst all the difficulties of these past eighteen months, there is so much for which we can thank God. I for one am grateful for all of you who have welcomed me into this benefice – up to now mostly online! To preside for the first time at that Eucharist service, on national Thanksgiving Day, was an absolute joy and privilege and I will always remember giving my first blessing with brolly in hand then singing that glorious final hymn outdoors as the sun came out!
To be amongst you all at last, gathered together in worship and sharing in holy communion felt like the culmination of a journey which began in December 2014 in a Catholic abbey in southern France when, as a Protestant, I was invited to assist at the Lord’s Table. I knew from that moment that God was calling me to explore a call to priesthood…so here I am, Lord!
I have been overwhelmed by the cards, gifts and prayer messages I have received on my recent Ordination to the priesthood. Thank you for your love and generosity; Poppy is kindly ordering for me a purple stole as a gift from you all which I look forward to wearing. The glass Tree of Life sculpture is so very beautiful, and I will enjoy using it for reflections and meditations in the benefice and beyond. Coincidentally, or perhaps serendipitously, it links not only with the cover of the Bible given to me on my ordination by the Diocese, but also the green stole I have just had made with its embroidery of a stem of new life growing from dead thorns, and the words Life, Growth, Hope. This is no “ordinary” time at all!
As we move along new paths together, I look forward to sharing this next part of my journey with you all across the benefice, and to experiencing that sense of new life in Christ, growing his Church, all the while inhabiting the hope he brings.
With love and blessings,
The Revd Pauline Setterfield
Assistant Curate – Tetbury Benefice