Vicar's Letter - 18.08

    Vicar’s Letter – A Last Letter - August 2018

So this is it - the last time I will be writing a letter for the front of the Parish News. In counting them up I find that this one will be my 123rd letter. Not a bad total and for those who have read them all, I commend your patience and your commitment to the cause. This opportunity to share my thoughts has been such a privilege. It has always been such an encouragement when people have commented on these letters and that those comments have usually been positive.

But it is time to move on and for the next few months the task of filling this space will be given to the clergy who will be holding the fort until the next vicar arrives. I am so grateful to the team who will be taking responsibility for the services while the transition takes place. They are all giving this ministry for no financial recompense only the reward they will receive from fully serving God. It is one of the most humbling parts of my job to be surrounded by all those who give so freely to ensure that the church can continue to build God’s Kingdom here amongst us.

So as we are getting ready to leave I am looking around with great fondness at all the good things that are part of being here. We will miss so many friends and the people of this wonderful village that mean so much to us. There is nowhere that I know that has the same feel as Brockenhurst. Where else do you need a to take a torch out with you at night to avoid the pony droppings? I shall miss the view from my study window as I watch the seasons change in the forest. There all those things that we take for granted such as the easy access to a beautiful walk in some of the most awesome landscapes in the whole country.

It has been such a joy and privilege to be your local parish priest: to be involved with families at their times of greatest joy and of greatest sorrow, to watch the children of the village grow up and through our school and to watch our congregations bring their worship to God through all the many cycles of the years including being part of the great, glorious festivals and with the faithful few at our regular times of prayer.

These have been the very best years for me with lots of memories forged in the love and kindness of those who have helped me to lead our church. I will keep you all in my heart and in my prayers. We will be back I’m sure to visit our old familiar haunts. As we go we hope that for the church and for the community there are even better days ahead. That God will continue to bless this very special place and shine his light and life and love into the lives of many. May God be with you all, now and forever,                                   Neil

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