Dear Friends,

Win and I were surprised last week by the arrival of the Roads Authority and their heavy equipment for providing a superb “black top” to the roads of our small housing estate “Mahogany Estate”. I found it difficult to believe our good fortune. Certainly there have been a few minor inconveniences at times when moving in and out while they were working, but when these are compared to the end result of smooth rides through the estate and a tidy appearance, such inconveniences are absolutely nothing to complain about. 

The question of course remains: will we drive more carefully on these fine new roads or will they in time - so sad even to imagine - become the scene of some tragic and totally unnecessary accident? I pray this privilege of these fine roads we have been afforded will be matched by a corresponding responsibility to use them with great care for all other users and residents, and, indeed, to keep them rubbish-free.

There are a few other things I am building up to say about this great and unexpected boon but the biggest of those things will await another letter. After all, I really can’t have people saying my letters are too long, can I …? Let me just observe that if a culture with a Christian basis forgets and denies that basis, the inevitable result is that we, its inhabitants, proceed to consider that anything we want for ourselves becomes what we have a right to, irrespective of any ill effect it may have on others. 

And then of course (among many other things), good roads do become dangerous.

The Collect for the Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity is 

KEEP, we beseech thee, O Lord, thy Church with thy perpetual mercy; and, because the frailty of man without thee cannot but fall, keep us ever by thy help from all things hurtful, and lead us to all things profitable to our salvation; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

As so often, I find the Collect saying in a few pithy and powerful phrases what I have been fumbling to express. No matter how “man” or a society organises itself, its inherent “frailty” or fragility will always, when divorced from God, “fall”. So we petition our Lord that He may act to help us, to "keep us ever" from everything that will hurt us, and to "lead us" in every issue towards, rather than away from “our salvation”, the absolute end that is God’s purpose for bringing us into being. As with the Collects as a whole, the petition is rendered “through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

So may it be.

For directions about the services this Sunday the 12th September the Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity, please see the website  . 

In reliance upon the mighty power of the Triune God to keep us faithful to and in all truth, I am in your service 

Bishop Nicholas

P.S. Very many thanks for the congregational response to the Samaritan’s Purse appeal for a share of our tithe. This appeal will close on Sunday.