A message from the Rev’d Amanda Collinson

Posted by Admin on Thursday, 30th January 2020, 12:00

Amanda Collinson

Priest-in-Charge

St John the Baptist Church

Northwood.

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Tel: 01983 294913

Email: amandacollinson01@gmail.com

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HELLO THERE!

 

This February is a month the Collinson family is really looking forward to – for me it is when I start my three-month sabbatical (long study leave), for the boys they are simply excited about experiencing a leap year! ‘Do you know anyone who is due to have their baby this month? One boy asked, ‘How cool would it be for them to have the baby on the 29th.’  ‘But what about any of your girl friends Mum, do you know any female who is going to propose to their boyfriend?’ It’s amazing what runs through their minds – I know I have mentioned in the past to the boys one mealtime around the table that I threatened their Dad, my husband James, at the beginning of 2008 that if he didn’t propose by the 29th Feb I would be asking him: I couldn’t believe they had remembered that!  By the way he ensured that didn’t happen by asking me before!!!!
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Being 9 and 7 years old, our boys have obviously lived through a couple of leap years, but never before have they actually been aware of enjoying the extra day and as a result it is really meaning something to them.  For most of us adults, we may note it, but certainly not dwell on it (unless you are a Leap Day baby!), do anything special on it or make it more than any other day.  But then thinking about it, I don’t think James, or I set many days aside as special – just birthdays and our anniversary outside the normal ones of Christmas etc!
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Yes, it’s true, we do not really celebrate Valentine’s Day in an over-the-top way: we may buy cards, but perhaps that is more out of pressure from society than a wish to show our affection to one another….because we like to do that at other times!  Don’t worry, I am not going to be all romantic and slushy telling you how much we adore one another and give each other gifts every other week, we are a realistic couple with full time jobs and two boys who consume every spare minute we have, but we do go for meals, just the two of us throughout the year and randomly treat one another when we see something that the other would like.  I would rather that, than having him feel forced to buy something which has doubled in price since 10th Feb just because it has a heart on it!  You could say ‘Random acts of love’ is what makes my heart squeeze, not a restaurant outing on 14th Feb.
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And that is what I was shown over the Christmas period.  I was shown love by wonderful people who dropped angels through my door or left them in the church.  I was touched by the number of people who opened their hearts to me, somewhat of a stranger to them, when I gave them an angel and thanked them for all they do for our community.
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Some of you may be thinking ‘What is she talking about?’ Hopefully some of you do remember the ‘Angels’ project which I wrote about in the December edition of this magazine – well my plan went a bit loopy!  It changed from just knitted angels to any angel, so we had a greater variety of angels to hand out to the community; I added a ‘bag of blessings’ to the angel when I went delivering; we didn’t get to all the places we had intended to do due to a whole world of fastballs that came our way in the lead up to Christmas…..But we spoke to many people around the community as we gave out the beautiful angels, we adorned our church with angels and we are still receiving more now!
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Am I frustrated that I didn’t achieve my goal and visit all the people I wanted to? Yes. But do I think we succeeded in the aim of sharing hope, joy and love to the people I met? Yes definitely.  And furthermore, I received hope, joy and love from the people I met….
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‘Love is….’ – I talked about those little cartoons from the 60s and 70s in the February 2019 magazine and amusingly this phrase came straight back to my mind again this month – hence why I put the words on the front of the magazine. And after all what happened over Christmas with these lovely angels my new favourite phrase is ‘Love is…. people making angels to share hope and love to others they will never meet.’
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A very talented young lady that I know recently wrote a short story which won an island-wide competition.  It was about a Christmas Tree Angel who had lost her eyes…. but you only find that out at the end of the story!  Anyway she poignantly ends her story by saying ‘you don’t have to have eyes to feel the magic of Christmas’ – she’s right because love and kindness are palatable, it can be heard in voices when you smile, it can be felt in a hug…..the list is endless. And that is what you all did – shared the magic and love of Christmas. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
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And that is why, thanks to you the lovely people of our wonderful village, I am going to start my sabbatical with a heart full of love and blessings.  I hope the month and year ahead is the same for you.
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With love and blessings to you all!

 

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Rev’d Amanda

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