Vicar's Letter - Mary Nicholson Farewell

Vicar’s Letter – Farewell      

Time has flown by. It is two years and nine months since I first arrived at Brockenhurst Parish. It is now time for me to say farewell to you all. I am called to embark on God’s missionary boat again, to journey forward to a different destination – St Mark’s Church, Archers Road, Southampton. I am called to set up a pioneering ministry for those with addiction, supporting their recovery, and helping those who are homeless. I am not a city person. Despite being born and having lived in Hong Kong until my early teens, I much prefer the rural environment. Being brought up in a rural village, I long for the mountains, and nature brings me joy and refreshes my inner most being. So, God’s calling for me to serve in Southampton seems to be out of the blue; on reflection, it has been in the background ever since my baptism ten years ago. I am now reconciled and at peace with my next post. I trust that God will be with me, for God is faithful and steadfast. I would like to take this opportunity to warmly thank you all for your love and care during my time with you. Words are inadequate and unable to fully describe my sincere and heart-felt gratitude to you all. You have given me the space to grow in my own time, and your patience has been instrumental in allowing the development of my ministry. I am truly grateful for the invaluable opportunities you have afforded me throughout. Through your support and encouragement, my faith and spirituality, the source of my joy and strength, have grown and flourished. More importantly, this curacy has allowed me to grow in confidence as a priest and in developing my own unique ministerial style. I thank God for your generosity, kindness and love. I confess that I am anxious of my own inadequacy, or that I am ill equipped, to help those in need; nonetheless, I am excited because the privilege and the prospect of developing this future ministry, in collaboration with many who are passionate and wanting to make a difference, are urging me forward. I shall be licensed on Wednesday 22 May as associate priest at St Mark’s Archers Road, Southampton. My hope is that you will remember me in your prayers as I move forward to serve those in need of hope and God’s love. May God bless you all as we continue to share in His mission.

The Revd Dr Mary Nicholson