Looking back, looking forward...

Looking back, looking forward

THIS month is all about looking back – and about looking forward as well. It is, of course, the 100th anniversary since the end of the First World War, a commemoration that will make our Remembrance Service on November 11th have even greater importance.

It is also the month when we hold our annual Memorial Service – at 4pm on Sunday November 4th – when we remember all those who have died, either recently or many years ago.

It always seems very fitting that we hold our Remembrance and Memorial services as the leaves on the trees turn brown and all around us the world is turning golden.

The churchyard and House Lane cemetery look especially beautiful at this time of year. They are such special places to visit, or to sit in and reflect, perhaps remembering a loved one lost to us. With the Garden of Rest, they are important places of remembrance for so many.

For Lin and I, November marks our final month at St Leonard’s, having been in Sandridge for the past five and a half years. We announced our leaving back in April and seven months later, it is time to move on.

It has been a privilege to be part of so many celebrations – weddings, christenings, Christmas, Easter and much more. We have also shared the difficult times – funerals, sickness and disappointments. We shall miss the loving community of Sandridge and of St Leonard’s, including the school, Tara’s Retreat and Lyndon.

But just as autumn is a good time to look ahead to spring, so Lin and I move on into a new chapter of our lives. We shall be based at St Paul’s in Hatfield Road, St Albans, and be part of the life of the church where Lin and I previously worshipped and served for many years.

In addition, I have recently been appointed the Self-Supporting Ministry Officer for this part of St Albans diocese, and plan to be working with other volunteer ministers like myself.

I plan also to be developing my writing and broadcasting, and working to support Christians who work in or with the media, in all its various forms. It’s a passion I’ve had since training as a local newspaper reporter in the 1970s, and I want to be encouraging new generations of Christians working in the media.

As we leave, I wish you every blessing as you look back – and look forward to whatever lies ahead.

Rev Peter Crumpler

This article first appeared in the November 2018 edition of the St Leonard's parish magazine.