Simon baptized the new baby of a couple in our congregation yesterday. (I have problems with infant baptism, but I won’t get into that now) Later, we went to the party which was lovely – all their friends and family on both sides are all Christians (I am so jealous!) which made for a wonderful atmosphere. In fact, the Godmother was being confirmed at her own church in the evening. There was such a sense of rejoicing in God’s blessings of new (earthly) life and new life in Christ. It was so wonderful.
I’ve just come back from the funeral of a member of our church. She was 91, and the kind of person you can’t describe without using the term “lady”. She always sat near the back of church and had a real welcoming ministry – several people have told me that it was her warm welcome to them that encouraged them to come to worship here. Right up to the end of her life she carried on putting on her make up, her high heels (after a few years of being compelled to wear flats when training and working as a nurse, she never again wore anything but heels) and dressing up elegantly. Once when she was ill, Simon visited her with some flowers. He arranged them in a vase and asked if they looked OK – she said, “Yes, but could you please put the London front foremost”. This, “the London front,” meaning “the best side,” was a new phrase to us. This lady always had her London front foremost. Gracious, elegant and immaculate to the end of her days she truly was an example of growing old gracefully.
Last night I escaped to another church, on my own. Worshipping from time to time in a very different style is something I always find helpful. I got talking to the young woman sitting next to me only to find out that she too was doing exactly the same thing – escaping from her husband and regular church to worship in a different style! I had had a bit of a guilty fugitive/ traitor to my husband feeling before!