Things are really hotting up now. Our grand Festival, which has been planned for months and which everyone has been working really hard towards, starts next Thursday with the Ascension Day service, and then really kicks off the following day when the church is going to be open to visitors and we hope lots of people will come to visit the exhibitions and see the Flower Festival displays. A dedicated team of chaps was on duty this morning under the direction of Beryl to help shift table tops and display boards ready for setting up on Thursday, and we have all been encouraged to sign up to help as stewards and generally to pitch in and help make the whole thing a success. It would be nice if we get some fine weather.
Personally, Rowena and I are looking forward to it, but like many of these things, at this stage we are saying to each other that we will be glad when it is all over! Rowena is displaying some costumes that she has been making and the house has been full of them for the past few months, so it has been rather all pervading... I am sure the dresses will look wonderful.
But then the following week we will be wishing Toby and Madi a fond farewell as Toby retires and they move away down to Kent. It is going to be a momentous change for them and of course also for us, and St Michael's will seem strange without them. Whoever is eventually appointed as Vicar will have a hard act to follow..... But we will have a bit of Toby left behind! Robert Stokely and I have been working on a book of Toby's sermons which Toby has selected from those he has preached over the years he has been at St Michael's, and that is due to be published shortly. I am looking forward to seeing that come to fruition and I hope Toby will be pleased with the way it comes out.
And on top of all this it's Christian Aid Week and then the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity to follow....