A Day In The Life Of....
Last week I received a card. It was signed, “Chris, Laura and Olly”. I had to think for a second. Then it clicked. Back in September I’d met them to talk about my role and the life of a vicar, as they explored their own calling to ordained ministry in the Church of England.
I’d been very honest, giving them the clearest idea I could of life as a minister. They had also been to a couple of our services to see how we do things at the Waterfront churches. They can’t have been too put off - either by what I told them, or by what they saw at church! – as their card said they are all starting their training at theological college this month.
There is so much variety in my job. No two days are ever the same. But there are constants. The first is people. My job is about engaging with people, whatever situation they’re in. Sometimes I’m with people when they’re happy; like planning or conducting their wedding service. Other times, I’m supporting people through life’s toughest spells, like when they’re grieving the loss of a loved one. The second constant in my line of work is sharing the good news of God’s love. I pinch myself sometimes - I get paid to tell people how they can know God is for them; no matter who they are or what’s going on in life.
There’s a Bible verse that says ‘Make the most of every opportunity.’ I often think of it, especially in my work at the University of Suffolk and Suffolk New College. As chaplain, I’m always looking for creative ways to engage with students and staff. For example, this month our chaplaincy team are putting on a welcome BBQ as part of the College’s Induction Week for new and returning students. It’s an opportunity to work with others - a Food & Catering tutor from the college is going to oversee the BBQ with her Level 1 students from the College. I doubt we’ll feed 5000, but if we meet 300 students, it will be another day worth remembering.