One of the unexpected benefits of taking up residence in the St. Paul’s Parish Hall basement is getting to know more about the parish that’s been our neighbour for the 17 years we’ve lived across the street.
Archdeacon John Clarke, who leads the parish, maintains a blog, and I’ve been an enthusiastic reader of it for the last few months. More often than not I find useful insight in what he writes, even if I need to translate into my decidedly more secular frame of reference.
In today’s post, he describes his upcoming sabbatical:
I could have taken all sorts of courses and studied lots of subjects that would have added nothing useful to my ministry or my sermons. Instead, I will try and learn how to play the guitar. It too may prove to be useless or futile, but I remain hopeful. I may never haul out the guitar in public or you may come to dread seeing me pick it up during a sermon.
By way of reassuring parishioners concerned about his absence, he adds:
So, to the point of what will be different, my hope is that you’ll will hardly know I’m gone. As one person put it, “the parish got along just fine for 235 years before you, we can do 3 months easily.”
I am proud to be an ex officio member of the parish community, a parish led by someone with good humour and the courage to take on a new challenge like this.