Dear Friends,

Since sitting down to write my monthly letter there have been 3 terrible tragedies, the bombing at a concert in Manchester, the terrorist attack on London Bridge and

Borough Market and the terrible fire at Grenfell Tower, I hope and pray that by the time you read this there are not more tragedies reported. I am often challenged as to why God let’s such things happen, in the case of terrorist attacks evil has overcome good, religion is blamed but it is the misuse of scriptures which are the cause not the faith itself. Evil has distorted the ideals and lead to misinterpretation. As I often explain to children God has given us free choice, we can choose to follow as I believe the teachings of Jesus, to love God and our neighbour as our self, or we can do the opposite. At the moment it is too early to speculate as to what happened to cause such a dreadful fire, human error or accident we will no doubt in time find out. But what I am sure of is that God is with us in the suffering, he too mourns for what has happened.

Shattered building, market carnage and the black plumes of smoke and the charred remains of the tower were and are a dreadful reminder of despair and we could be overcome with that. However, immediately after each of those terrible events we saw an enormous outpouring of love and compassion, it brought cities and communities together, people were immediately drawn to help their neighbour in many different ways, digging into their own emotional and physical resources, an example of hope not despair. I am sure like me you must have been uplifted by not just the resilience of people but the outpouring of love, the coming together of people of different colour and belief all in the common cause to help others. I ponder why does it take tragedy for us to do that? Why can’t we tolerate difference and accept differing views from our own? As long as we are all working for the common good we should strive to overcome prejudice and discrimination not just when tragedy strikes. I pray that these examples of the outpouring of love and generosity will flourish and together we can strive to make this World a place where all can live in peace and harmony together.

Every blessing, Cate

PS If there is anyone who would like to be confirmed, renew their baptism/christening vows please let me know as we have a special service in September