Welcome to Revd Sue's Message Page.

Dear Friends,

My dear friends, as I come closer to the time that I stop working in the parishes, I think more and more about how to end well and say proper goodbyes. When I worked at the hospice, we spent a lot of time helping people to say meaningful goodbyes and, during the time that I was there, attitudes changed somewhat. At first, at the end of someone’s life, the focus was on ‘letting go.’ This involved, for the people left after someone had died, being expected to or being encouraged to sever connections with people that they had loved and lost through death. Today we have a much more helpful and, I think, healthy attitude, in as much as we now realise that just because we will not see someone that we love on earth again, we cannot and should not be expected to stop loving them-this is impossible. Instead we will in time, perhaps come to a stage when we ‘re-position them’ in some way in our hearts, minds and lives in order to live without their physical presence but can still love them, remember and value them.

At the beginning of July, I will stop working in our team of parishes during the week and will only work on Sundays, taking services. On Sunday 4th September at 11am we will all have the opportunity to gather together in Tenbury church to worship God, share communion and lunch so that I can mark the end of my current way of working among you all and say my goodbye. Following this service I will have a complete break for three months, returning at the beginning of Advent, to lead services on two Sundays each month. I will therefore not disappear altogether (you can’t get rid of me that easily!) but will return only to lead services and not work day to day within our parishes. I am not retiring; I will be doing some work throughout the diocese to do with prayer, but I do hope to have more free time to spend with my family. I also take this opportunity to confirm, contrary to some rumours, that my husband will NOT be reducing his hours or retiring at this time!!

Saying goodbye is, most often, a sad and difficult thing to do and this is no exception. I love my work in the parishes and have been full of joy and delight to serve God by being among you. I have travelled life’s journey with many people both during joyful times and very difficult or sad times, I have worshipped God, given thanks, learned and taught. I have had immense fun and at times I have struggled. I have given God’s blessing and I am greatly blessed. I have been with people as they have ended their Christian journey and begun it, I have laughed and I have cried. Throughout it all I know that God loves me, guides and supports me and strengthens me to do his will. I love you all as my Christian brothers and sisters and I am glad to be part of this family. I am very sad to be changing my role within this family but I know that it is what God wants of me and so it is right that I do it. You all remain very precious to me and I shall continue to pray for you all and I ask that you will do the same for me. I thank you all for the hundreds and hundreds of cups of tea you have blessed me with throughout the years and hope that I can still share one with you in the future!

Thank you everyone for everything you have done and are to me and God bless you all.

Revd Sue.