Highlights of my first year as Officer for Rural Life

I’ve gone through four seasons now, as Bishop’s Officer for Rural life.  It’s surprising how much you can fit in.  The summer has been particularly busy with all the shows, now we are in Autumn the fields are ploughed, the leaves are once again falling from the trees, and the harvest services are taking place.  An important time – Harvest to look back and give thanks.

So, as I look back I give thanks to all those who have supported me through my first year, particularly Rev Tim Williams.

What were my highlights? The highlights were definitely the shows, both large and small.  An opportunity for communities to get together, to compete with their animals, sheep, dogs, cattle, goats, rabbits, chickens you name it all God’s creatures great and small all with owners/breeders who think theirs should get a rosette.  All the produced proudly lined up all labelled neatly. The craft carefully created waiting to be judged.

But it’s not just about competing, it’s about connecting or re-connecting with one another, joking, laughing and sharing stories – I can tell you the catering tent is never empty!

Why do I attend these shows, with dog collar on and flowery wellies (that have been greatly admired) I have attended the shows through sun, rain, huge hailstones (Brecon Show) and mud.  For me it’s about showing the church cares and that we are interested in their lives.  It’s a chance to be available in an informal setting and quite often people will stop and talk to you.  It’s about faith in action.  Somewhere mid August I lost track of the number of people I’ve talked to.

I took many photos over the year and here are just a few that show some of my favourite bits of the year, it was very difficult to choose.  If you want to see more go along to my Facebook page.