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Posts Tagged ‘Archbishop of Canterbury’

Alphabet BlocksYesterday the Vicar asked me to proofread a document for him. The usual lot of the wife of a dyslexic vicar. So I read through his Ministry Development Review (MDR) form. He has an MDR every two years –  talking through where he’s at with another member of clergy from the diocese and drawing up some goals for the next few years. It’s a useful process for reflection and planning. The form was mostly fine, but right at the beginning of the form it asked him to give:

Date of last ABC

To this question my husband had responded:

Don’t know what this is

Since I didn’t either and my google fu let me down, I shared the problem with Twitter. The Church of England is like any other large organisation – it loves its acronyms. And likes to change them on a regular basis to keep you on your toes. Suggestions from far and wide included the following:

  • Approved By Committee (if this was a long time ago it may indicate ructions in the PCC)
  • Attack By Churchwarden (recent date indicative of alarming breakdown in parish relationships)
  • Another Blooming Chore
  • Absolute Belief Crisis
  • ArchBishop’s Council
  • ArchBishop of Canterbury (and one clever clogs said that the answer to that was Lady Williams of Oystermouth)
  • Appalled By Congregation
  • Attended Baptist Church
  • Apple Boring Contest
  • Appeared Boyishly Charming (alas, this would be quite some time ago for the Vicar, unless you can be boyishly charming without hair)
  • Annual Bishop’s Consultation

Eventually a very helpful person linked me to a diocesan document that explained that ABC stands for The Archdeacons and Bishops Pastoral Conversations. Of course. Obvious. And these ABCs happen after 5 years in post. Which is why the Vicar didn’t have a scooby, as we’ve only been here for 4 years. We’ll know for next time. But I thought that some of the other suggestions were much more fun.

Are there any other options, I wonder?

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Since Rowan Williams stepped down this afternoon from the hardest job in the Church of England (or maybe not, parish life is just a microcosm of the Anglican Communion tbh), Twitter has been awash with suggestions of who will succeed him.

It was suggested that rather than the Crown Nominations Commission we could have a Bishops Got Talent show, with possible candidates competing for the post. This leads to the fun possibility of theme weeks:

  • Sermon week
  • Sitting through tedious civic occasions looking interested week
  • Dealing with the media week (including a round of ‘explaining the basics of the Christian faith to most reporters and especially sub-editors’)
  • Eyebrow styling week
  • Mitre modelling week

It also led to speculation about who could be on the panel. They must obviously conform to the required stereotypes of benign expert/stroppy upstart/foxy chick/joker. First suggestions (who do not necessarily have to be alive or real) include:

  • St John
  • Archdeacon Robert (from Rev)
  • Ellie (the Headteacher from Rev)
  • Adrian Plass.

I’d love to hear your ideas for possible rounds and those you have for alternative panel members.

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The Archbishop of Canterbury has one, so why not me, eh? I’m such an Anglican!

Actually, the Curate has chosen a book to read be read by members of our new church over Lent. And I’m going to read along too, although I probably won’t be able to make the evening meetings when they discuss the book and go deeper, as I’ll be babysitting at the Vicarage.

The book he’s chosen is one we looked at last year at our current church during Lent. It’s called ‘The Cross Centered Life’ by C J Mahaney, an American pastor (hence the -er spelling of centre).

The Cross Centered Life

The book has the great advantage of being very short (only seven chapters and about 70 pages) and is a very easy read. I’m going to dig out my copy now, and shall be reading a chapter or so a week over Lent. Lent begins the day after Pancake Day, Tuesday 24th February.

Why not get a copy yourself and join me in the Vicarage kitchen as I drink a mug of tea, eat some flapjack and think through what I’ve been reading? I’ll be blogging my progress.

Amazon are currently supplying it for £5.59. A bargain for some great encouragement to keep focused on the central truth of Christian faith. Better order it now, as Amazon say that it can take 1-3 weeks to deliver.

There’s also a terrific cd from Sovereign Grace music which goes with the book.

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