The Nene Crossings Benefice

Fr. John writes..............

Dear All,

Thank You Pauline

It is with some sadness that after long and faithful, and much appreciated service to our Benefice, Revd. Pauline has asked to take a bit of a back seat. We are hoping to lighten her responsibilities by moving her from the role of licensed assistant priest in the Benefice, to a 'Permission to Officiate' priest. This will reduce her legal responsibilities to PCCs etc. but will allow her to 'keep her hand in' helping out by taking on a reduced number of our services, hence easing her ability to be a Good Grandma at weekends..

The first thing I want to say, is, I cannot thank Pauline enough for the work she has done in the Benefice over the last 8 years I have been here. She has been a wonderful, caring, and wise colleague whom it has been a privilege to work and learn alongside.... In saying all that, and before it sounds too much like a eulogy, we must say we have not lost her. She will still be around, and has agreed to continue leading a service a month, which makes a huge difference to our abilities to run services through the Benefice.

The biggest difference I can see in terms of services will be at the 10:30/10:45am. service slot. We have been used to having two priests in the Benefice, hence running two Holy Communions at the same time. Obviously I can only be at one place at one time hence whilst two out of three weekly communions will be sustainable in both parishes Irthlingborough and Woodford, will on occasion need to substitute a non-Eucharistic, Morning Prayer service. The exact frequency and the ratio between the two parishes will need to be something of an experiment and evolution.

I know Pauline has touched a good many people’s lives, and her pastoral heart has encouraged and helped many in dark times and times of joy.. None of this will stop I am sure. But this does give us time to draw a line and allow both Pauline and Malcolm a well-earned breathing space and reduction in commitments.

As a little way of saying thank you and acknowledging our debt, we will hold a combined service on the 29th September (All Angels Day, which seems appropriate) followed by a shared lunch. Watch this space for details.

Finally I am sure I speak for us all, when I say we wish both Pauline and Malcolm a long and happy retirement (again) but know that we haven't said goodbye, merely facilitated a release from pressure.

With love and prayers,

Fr. John