As our children and young people return to school and the pace of life begins to pick up again after a brief and much-needed lull over the summer, I wonder how you’re feeling?
Perhaps you’ve missed friends or colleagues and the structure of your usual rhythm and routine, and are excited and energised by the fact of returning to something that feels more normal.
Maybe you’ve enjoyed less traffic on the roads, fewer evening commitments, some time away on holiday and are wishing that slower way of living could continue a bit longer.
As I prepare to move from the role of acting archdeacon to becoming Archdeacon of Derbyshire Peak and Dales, I have been reflecting on what I might need to do differently now I have a long-term role rather than only six months to deliver impact and identifiable outcomes.
If you are free, then I’d love to welcome you to my licensing and collation service at Derby Cathedral on Saturday, 30 September at 2:30pm.
As you may have heard me say at a deanery synod or in interview, my personal priorities will remain prayer, people, places, projects, planning and personal formation – do ask me about them and how they connect to our emerging diocesan priorities and the things that matter to you in your context.
I want to learn how to navigate the responsibilities and opportunities of my role in a way that brings about positive changes and is healthy and life-giving for me and all those I work with.
I’d like to invite you all to join that journey with me.
My experience is that you travel well and make best progress towards the future that God is preparing for you by praying, reflecting, seeking feedback, planning and working together focussed on what really matters, the things we aim to achieve.
Old habits from my teaching career, a way of being I find invaluable and highly recommend.
So as we look towards the autumn term, may we form genuine relationships of mutual care and accountability.
Then together we can discern what God is inviting us into and asking us to prioritise.
And we can do those things at a pace that is sustainable and good news for us, as well as for those we are called to serve.
Revd Canon Nicky Fenton
Acting Archdeacon of Derbyshire Peak and Dales