Dealing with Lockdown

On arriving in Fermanagh 18 years ago
On 20th December 2002
I realised that things were going
To be different

I had left Teaching Mathematics
In a secondary school of 1600 pupils
In Portsmouth, Hampshire
Southern England

To return to ministry as a Rector
In rural Fermanagh
With a congregation of around 600 people

Portsmouth is essentially an island
Of about 4 square miles
With a population of 200,000 people

Fermanagh isn’t

Obviously I didn’t know everyone in Portsmouth
But quickly came to realise
That most people knew something
About the majority of people
In Fermanagh

And that for me – was change!
A huge change

We ALL are facing CHANGE in these days
Ten months of change, so far
And we will probably see at least a Year of It

But one of the encouraging
Things for me
Is the difference between
Fermanagh and Portsmouth

And that is that people
Will look out for each other
As they know the majority
Of people so well

It’s a bit like the story of Moses and Jethro
In Exodus 18
Moses led, ruled and judged
The children of Israel

Jethro, Moses’ father-in-Law
Advised Moses to let the people
Deal with their issues among themselves
By having them gathered into groups
That had an appointed leader

Moses then could deal with the Leaders
And the most important cases
Rather than having to deal with everything

In a similar way
Members of churches
Can look out for each other

Help in ways that you are able
And permitted to do

Inform the Church Leaders
Of serious cases

And continue to pray for
And encourage one another

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