September 2018

 Dear Friends,

 For some of you reading this, September is the alternative `New Year' with a new term dawning after well earned breaks for teaching staff, exams results and the beginning and continuation of educational opportunities in a new or existing school community. For some of you, it is a month to take your holiday now that prices come down and resorts etc are quieter.

September provides an opportunity to look afresh at how your year has gone so far and what you would like to achieve and possibly change during the remainder of the year ahead. As parents/carers prepare their children for a new school year, making sure they have the right uniform, equipment etc, so we all need to give attention to preparation for whatever we are doing or planning. Holidays or time to prepare for transition to a new place of learning, a new job or new situations is important to savour the breathing space in our lives and reflect on the important things that we carry with us as we move through the stages in our life and the seasons and times of the year. 

 Whether we are looking forward to the new opportunities that come through a new school, university or college year for formal learning, or whether it is appreciating life and relationship as we know them, may September and onwards be opportunities for us to make a difference to the lives of those around us, to be thoughtful and generous in our dealings with others.

 In our busy world where everyone on Social Media appears to have popular, organised, successful and happy lives, it is tempting to think that somehow we are missing out, that we need to drive ourselves that bit more in order to achieve. As the first days of September open up, give thanks to God for what you have and enjoy, that you may appreciate and value the person you are and what has shaped and formed you. Use the opportunity to return to college, school, work or home refreshed and prepared; to be ourselves, to be content and to see what God has in store for us. Take the best from the first eight months of the year and see the next four as new opportunity to apply the best and add to it with renewed eyes, minds, hope and energy.

 Canon Tony