Ministers Letter – August 2010

Rev. Ray Coates

My Dear Friends,

August, traditional holiday month for me for forty years, and then into September, ‘the silly season’ in the eyes of many. That’s because many churches don’t have the usual meetings/gatherings in the first of those months and there are not usually any business meetings either, but come September everything starts up again and the autumn round of business meetings happen and suddenly there isn’t a free night in the diary!

Perhaps your lives also have cycles like that – the calm before the storm. When I was a child August would be when we went away, usually towards the end for holiday at Scarborough with its Cricket Festival. When we returned in September it was to a new class at school or sometimes a new school. When I started work as a teacher, the same applied. When I became a Minister, nothing much changed because the new Methodist year always begins in September.

So that month of August has always been an important time. These days I would say it is time given us to prepare for the new challenges that will arise in the coming months. Some of them I know about already. Some will crop up in the coming months but at present I have no inkling of them.

We all need those quieter times to help us prepare for the busier ones. Jesus certainly had them in his life and as you look at many of the saints, they too had them. They created space for themselves at times it seemed. It is after hearing our new Methodist President speaking about ‘Listening to God’ and reflecting and preaching on that theme that I write this. And in writing thus, I hope I’m encouraging you into healthier ways as well as listening and taking notice of God speaking to me.

With much love,
Your Minister and friend,