The Alpha Course
For everyone, whether new to Christianity, wanting to investigate, or just brushing up on the basics.
Alpha at Christ Church
Nigel Corwin's blog
This month I want to do a small plug for Radio West Suffolk, the hospital radio. They broadcast on 1350AM so you can listen to them at home or in your car.
It is run purely by volunteers and they do a wonderful job. They have a "Thought for the Week" every Thursday evening and I am privileged occasionally to be invited to speak.
At first I found it quite disconcerting not being able to see the people to whom I was talking. Was anyone listening or was I just talking to myself?
In church of course it is quite different; I can look into the eyes of the congregation - those who are awake. (Abraham Lincoln once said "If everyone who fell asleep in church was laid end to end they'd be a lot more comfortable").
It occurs to me that prayer is a bit like speaking on the radio. When we pray to God and seem to get no answer how do we know that we are not just talking to ourselves.
There's a story of a sailor who falls in the water he prays "Dear God, you don't know me because I've never prayed before, I'm Sam the sailor. I'm drowning, I'm on the verge of death, please send a lifeboat or helicopter quickly, I know you are probably too busy to bother with someone like me, I've not lived a good life, but I promise if you save me I'll never bother you again".
I moved to Bury St Edmunds and joined Christ Church as a Reader in 1993. I was ordained as a non-stipendary priest in 1997. I retired from my paid employment in 1999 which enabled me to serve Christ Church full-time. It was both challenging and fulfilling. After 19 wonderful years in 2012 I decided to take a step back and retire although I still help with the "occasional offices".