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Welcome to the second celebratory issue of The Reader! The major celebrations which have taken place since the last issue are of course the service at All Souls on Ascension Day, and the Follow 16 event in July. The cover of the magazine is a photograph taken on Ascension Day, and shows a Reader leading the procession at the end of the service. The magazine contains a resumé of Bishop Robert’s sermon entitled ‘Looking to the future’ and in the centre page spread you will find a story-board of pictures from that service. You may like to take this out, unless you are keeping the issue as a memento of the occasion, and use it as a poster or talking point about Reader ministry.
Follow 16 will also be highlighted, but at the time of writing that is yet to take place. Our recently appointed sub-editor will be writing about this and hopefully there will be some pictures too.
Readers are widespread. Betty in the Falklands looks back at what she has discovered about Readership there and is pleased to have a Reader colleague there at last. The article on the history
of our magazine in the last issue came to life for me when the person whose identity I did not know, but from whose 1997 article I quoted, contacted me. She is from the Diocese of Europe. Finally on the anniversary theme, there is an article which throws more light on the history of our movement – this time way back to the Tudor and Stuart period!
Ethics is a very broad theme and this issue contains a selection of very different articles which help us to explore this theme a little – take a peep at the contents to find out more. My thanks to those who offer to write and again, if anyone else wants to write on this topic, or indeed any other relevant areas of Reader ministry for a future issue, please do contact me with a view to discussing the possibilities.
Time passes and is marked in all sorts of ways: birthdays, festivals, anniversaries to name but a few. In between we have ‘ordinary time’. This is perhaps more like ‘ordinary meals’, not drawing any particular attention to themselves and yet foundational to our basic diet. The same is, I think, true of the public reading of scripture. Before long we will be back in Year A, yes, back to Matthew’s gospel again. If you want to explore this gospel in more detail, you will be pleased to see the last of the series on commentaries covers Matthew. And now is the time to prepare, as Advent will be upon us sooner than we think!
The world seems to be becoming a more and more unsafe place and the need to pray for things local, national and world-wide seems to grow daily. Personally I really enjoy leading intercessions, partly I suppose because I find it such a challenge: what shall I include? What shall I say? How long do I have? Rupert Bristow in his helpful article on leading Intercessions, says ‘as intercessors, we are assisting in the process of connecting people to God, providing pathways to spiritual development’.
For Readers the challenge of Rupert’s comment extends into the whole of our ministry; we are assisting with enabling people to connect with God through many, many different pathways. That is our tradition and it is something to be both celebrated and lived out in our everyday lives. There are other articles in this magazine to make you think and pray, so get reading! The theme for the first issue next year will be music and worship, and so if you are interested in writing about this, or about Pioneer Ministry for next summer, please let me know!
Meanwhile stay near the cross and keep following!
150 YEARS OF READER MINISTRY
Looking to the future - BISHOP ROBERT PATERSON
Reader Ministry in the Falkland Islands - Betty Turner
Readers in Tudor and Stuart England - Nicholas Orme
A Day of Celebration - photo feature
What a day of fun and joy! - Richenda Milton-Daws
Theme - Considering ethics
To learn to love your neighbour John Coutts
Environment according to the Gospel - Nigel Hopper
Ethics for worshippers - Michael Leyden
Understanding sin - peter wright
God’s heart for fashion - Simon Ward
Intercession... Intercession... Intercession... - RUPERT BRISTOW
What a Difference a Day Makes - Carol Nicholas-Letch
Restoring Hope with the Joel Community Trust - BECKY MILLS
A new School of Leadership - Emma Ineson
Studying Matthew - KIRSTY ANDERSON and MARION GRAY
Following through formation - Rosemary Walters
Archbishop of Canterbury’s - new Lambeth Awards
Introducing Morgan Bunday