As I write this letter my thoughts are very much on the fabric of the Church building as we consider how best to move forward with the repairs and refurbishment.  Recently we had a trip to Liverpool on the train. As you come out of the station at Ormskirk and walk up the hill, you cannot fail to be impressed by the majestic building in front of you. The land on which Emmanuel stands was originally bought from the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway in the 1870’s.  In its classic Gothic style, with its tall tower, it continues to be a recognisable part of the Ormskirk townscape, visible for miles around.

​But at this time of year, there is something else very beautiful, but almost hidden in the shadow of the building – a crop of snowdrops. If ever we wanted a sign and assurance that Spring will follow Winter, we have only to look at the snowdrops that appear, at times in the most unexpected of places.

The Book of Ecclesiastes 3:1 reminds us that, “for everything there is a season, and a time for every activity under heaven.”  In verse 11 we read how God “has made everything beautiful in its time.”  Everything we have done, are doing, and seek to do is a beautiful part of the plans God has for us.  It is God who continues to weave the threads that make up the tapestry of our lives in service to him.

As the seasons change, we experience the cyclical nature of our discipleship as we journey into Lent.  The season of Lent is a time of prayerful reflection, a time when we can examine the thoughts of our hearts and minds as we focus upon the journey of Jesus to the pain and suffering of his crucifixion, and the glory and joy of his resurrection.  It is a time for reflecting upon the past, evaluating the present and looking forward to the future in continued communion with Christ.

And so I pray that as a body of Christ’s followers, we will continue to reminisce together and learn from the past years of our heritage.  I pray that we will take time to reflect upon how we seek to love God and serve our fellow neighbour in the world today.  But I also pray that throughout that process, we will continue to encourage one another as we look forward to the beautiful future of our Church that God has planned for us, so that like our tower, which projects over our townscape, we too will continue to project God’s love into our local community and wider world.

May God continue to bless us all,