Pastoring (pasting?) in confinement

Well the latest idea going around is that we will emerge from confinement at the end of April. I look each morning at the statistics for France and for Aquitaine and gaze intently, hoping to discern where exactly on the curve we are. It seems to me that we are on the steep ascent. The day that things start to level out will be a time for celebration.

This means, of course, that we will be confined for my birthday. We had booked a treat - a visit to the newly conceived Bassins de Lumière - the old Nazi submarine base has been set up as a light and sound show, like the Ateliers de Lumière in Paris, but with reflections in the water. The photographs of the trials of the setup are ravishing.

Not only that but Gwilym and Beth were to come and visit from London, their last visit before they move to Norwich. But at present our skies are free of planes, even empty ones, and they are considering shutting the airport until after confinement.

Still, there will be chocolate cake. I found a new easy recipe. Also we have discovered the joys of bread-making by the no-knead, long-proving method. Oatmeal loaves, one of the things I have missed from the UK, are now easily accessible!

Meanwhile life seems just as busy! We maintain almost all the meetings we have undertaken but by internet, using Zoom or Facebook Live. To this is added meetings with our sending church, our mission internationally and in France, and the international pastors. Some of these things clash and some of them I forget to log in for. So I need to be Much More Organised than I usually am. I can no longer rely on my memory.

Better go make a list and remember to check it twice!

My role in the CNEF33 involves me passing information around, it's not a lot of work, but it's important that churches know that they are represented and kept informed as the situation develops.

One of my concerns is not just that church folk know that we are thinking of them, praying for them and keeping in touch with them, but that they gain that sense of community that comes from keeping in touch with each other. Appointing elders and deacons can make this feel less important - it's their job to do this - but it isn't. You can't delegate community. It comes from everyone to everyone. Must pray for this.


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