Dear Friends,

I had expected to start this letter much earlier today, but duty called in other directions and it appears my well is a bit dry! I shall move on therefore to a shortened letter this week. 

I continue, as I trust you also do, to pray for those in authority in our land and around the world. They have an extraordinarily difficult task to accomplish and they have human frailties as do we all. We pray they may be sensitive to wise counsel unlike some of the kings of Israel, and we pray too that they may continue to increase in knowledge and wisdom as they organise their work and serve their people, and also that by the help of God they will avoid various human pitfalls and be open to the logic and implications of true information and data.

The Collect for the Twentieth Sunday after Trinity 

O Almighty and most merciful God, of thy bountiful goodness keep us, we beseech thee, from all things that may hurt us; that we, being ready both in body and soul, may cheerfully accomplish those things that thou wouldest have done; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

We shall also commemorate St. Luke the Evangelist because St. Luke’s Day is on the day following, Monday the 18th October. The Collect for St. Luke’s Day is

Almighty God, who calledst Luke the Physician, whose praise is in the Gospel, to be an Evangelist, and Physician of the soul: May it please thee that, by the wholesome medicines of the doctrine delivered by him, all the diseases of our souls may be healed; through the merits of thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

We perhaps see how beautifully the themes of these two prayers buttress each other. In Sunday’s Collect we are reminded that when we are “kept … from all things that may hurt us” it is not of our own doing or out of blind chance, but rather out of God’s “bountiful goodness”. This is only possible to believe through a worldview that has God at its head, God who is specifically revealed “through Jesus Christ our Lord” and who would have us accomplish those things that He has designed for us to accomplish. The St. Luke’s Day Collect reminds us that “Doctor Luke” because of His Christian calling expanded his avocation as a physician  into his specifically evangelical Christian work, and that by means of his writings a necessary healing may still be ministered to our souls by the “wholesome medicines” of his teaching. Thus (as in the former prayer) we may be kept “from all things that may hurt us” and be kept “ready both in body and soul”.

So may we be kept healed and ready during these trying times.

For directions about the services this Sunday the 17th October the Twentieth 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