A glance at the Church Calendar tells us we have now moved on from a breathtaking sequence of church festivals (Easter, Ascension and Pentecost) into a period of “Ordinary Time”. After a year or so which has definitely been being anything other than “ordinary”, this sounds on the one hand reassuring, and possibly, on the other hand, a little dull. Of course, we long for the excitement of Advent and Christmas, but in the meantime must satisfy ourselves with some good weather, the excitement of European football (or whatever you own sporting indulgence is) and the prospect of holidays, near or far.

After the extraordinary times of the pandemic so far, we also realise that in some ways, life can never be truly ordinary again. We are reminded about how previously unthinkable plans and developments can be initiated and accelerated by time of crisis. The National Health Service itself would not have happened when it did, if it had not been for the Second World War. Good can come out of bad. Our own church and diocese have been jolted forward into looking at new fresh ideas including: new patterns of ministry for lay and ordained, the Living in Love and Faith initiative , Eco Church, Lights for Christ, and new school ventures ( to name just some of them). Life is moving on with a jolt.

There is never anything ordinary with a life of being a disciple of Jesus. God is always the same (“with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change”) but also always new and innovative (“See, I am making all things new”). Praise the Lord for ordinary and extra-ordinary times!

John Hosker