I would just like to take this opportunity to say thank you for all your support and encouragement over the last 7 years while I have been the Priest in Charge here of the Parishes of Wenvoe and St Lythans.
I have been most fortunate to serve in such a beautiful place but especially to serve in such a lovely community. It has been a privilege to serve with you and to be involved in different aspects of village life. We are lucky in Wenvoe to still maintain our shop, pub, library, halls and school, and of course all the clubs and societies and What’s On that plays such a wonderful role in keeping people connected. I would just like to make a special mention for Gwenfo School, for the children, parents and staff associated with it. I cannot tell you how much I have enjoyed coming and being with you at school assemblies and inviting you into St Mary’s and a couple of years ago leading a pilgrimage to St Lythans.
The last 18months have been difficult for everyone, but the way the community has pulled together and supported each other has been inspiring and thank you to the special people who have done so much for others.
I have many highlights of my time with you all. Christmas is always a special time and having the community gathered together with Vale Village Church was always a favourite moment. As was the Waiting for Jesus gathering we used to have on Christmas Eve with people of all ages coming dressed as angels or shepherds (plus the occasional king!). We have enjoyed the Scarecrow Festivals and of course the Vicar in the Stocks and the Teddy Bear Parachute Jump off the Tower. We have had candidates for Confirmation and recorded two programmes for Radio Wales Sunday Worship Celebration.
None of this would have been possible without the magnificent congregations. I don’t know what people were expecting when I first arrived but we have been on a good journey together. What people outside of the church don’t realise is how much all churches rely on volunteers, and here Wenvoe, St Lythans (and Sully – my other church) are in the Premier League. So a special thank you to our Reader Emeritus and local historian and editor (the list could go on), to all who have served as Church Wardens, the Treasurers, the leaders of the Building Committee, the Secretaries to the PCC’s, all PCC members, the people who put together the weekly Newsletter and edit the Magazine those who lead worship and read in church, my clergy colleagues, the people who provide the music, those who organise the refreshments and the social occasions we all enjoy as a community, the leaders of Pebbles and all who have worked with the children and young people in the past, the fundraisers, the 200 Club and those who donate through the various ways to the Church, the Flower arrangers, the clock winders, the people who sort out Foodbank and charity collections. Those who clean the churches and polish the brasses and those who keep and have kept the church grounds looking so good. I hope I haven’t left anyone out, but if I have, I apologise. It is because of these wonderful volunteers that our churches have stood for 800 years and will continue to go for centuries to come.
It is now time for a new chapter for me, and a new chapter for the churches. As we enter into Autumn, we are reminded that there is indeed
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: Ecclesiastes 3.1
With my thanks to you all for the time we have spent together and my continued prayers to the wonderful people of Wenvoe and St Lythans