This is my second attempt to launch the new blog, after the natural conclusion of my previous one, Captain's (B)log, which charted my journey from Church Army Officer through life at theological college. As ordination is now one month away, it is time to say goodbye to the Captain forever, and welcome to the (almost) curate!
My aim for this blog is for it to be as it says - a community. It will contain various musings from me on life as a curate, as well as some of the issues of the day - both those which affect the church or Christianity directly, and those which do not have such an obvious connection (although as one who subscribes to the view that God is visible throughout God's world, I believe that pretty much anything and everything can relate to the Creator in some way).
My hope is that those of you who visit will want to stay and make your own contributions via the comments. One thing which attracted me to Ripon College Cuddesdon for my ordination training was the principal's announcement that it was a place of "awe, wonder and exploration". An internet blog can never be a substitute for a real-life community like a theological college - or a church congregation - but I do hope that we can all share in the wonder and exploration of the Christian journey in a non-judgemental fashion.
A word on the title. Community, I hope, is obvious! I valued immensely my time at Cuddesdon - and even the awkward, uncomfortable aspects of life in community were still incredibly worthwhile in my own spiritual journey. As for 'Cenobite' - it does not refer to the Cenobite of Clive Barker's world! Rather, it is a reference to an ancient monastic order who lived in community, serving one another and the outside world. This latter part is of great importance for me, as I am not one of those who believe Christians should shut themselves off from the rest of the world. Rather, we should be there to serve, walk alongside, minister to everyone in need, no matter what their personal faith. The 'cure of souls' is so named for a reason!
If you are interested, there is a fascinating article about Cenobitic monasticism at this link; alternatively, you can read the short version at the Orthodox Wiki!
I do hope you enjoy visiting this blog; whether you become a regular visitor or an occasional one, you are always welcome, and God bless you on your journey!
- After spending 9 years as a Church Army Officer, I went to Ripon College Cuddesdon in 2009 to train for ordination in the Church of England. I was ordained deacon in September 2011, and then priest in September 2012, serving as Assistant Curate in the parish of St. Botolph Northfleet and St. Mark Rosherville. Clare and I married in July 2000, and our son Nathan was born in September 2010