A View From The Vicarage - July

Dear Friends

The Weakest Link?

I wonder if you remember Ann Robinson’s quiz programme called “The Weakest Link” in which a series of contestants were asked general knowledge questions with individuals who had failed to answer well or sometimes too well being voted off as “The Weakest Link” to the accompaniment of a snide comment from Mrs Robinson alongside the final remark: “You are the Weakest Link, Goodbye”.  An illustration of the Roman Gladiatorial Contest modernised for the television age.

Why do I remind you of this somewhat macabre and I hope little lamented fixture of our now past television schedules?  A few days ago, I was reading about a contestant on The Weakest Link who was a member of the clergy.  Knowing of the man’s background the host goaded and taunted him about his Christianity;  her final attempt was:  “I suppose you believe in the gospel, don’t you?”  “Yes”  “Well then, I challenge you to sing the gospel to me in two sentences”.  The Minister immediately sang:  “Here’s to you Mrs Robinson.  Jesus loves you more than you will know”.

Regrettably the account I was reading didn’t continue the story but I’m convinced that possibly Ann Robinson may have felt herself to be “The Weakest Link” on that occasion.

As you read this we’ll be welcoming Reverend Linda MacDermott, newly ordained as a deacon into our parishes as Assistant Curate.  At her ordination Linda will have to declare publicly with her fellow ordinands her own faith in Christ.   Later on in  on July 14tth we’ll be welcoming Bishop Richard for his final visit to our Parishes before he retires in November, the Bishop will be here for a Confirmation when candidates will likewise affirm their faith and trust in Jesus Christ as parents and godparents also do at a baptism.

For each of these people and all of our brothers and sisters in Christ the weakest links are not those who do affirm their faith in Christ but rather those who do not.   For all of them and for all of us faith and trust in God are nurtured and grown through interaction with other Christians, not necessarily by standing on a street corner but rather by the way in which we live out our daily lives.  Christians are nurtured and encouraged by seeing the difference that knowing that “Jesus loves you more than you will know” applies to everybody not just Mrs Robinson, and you may never know quite what a difference your own example may be.  Just remember that whoever you are you can and do make a difference to other people’s lives.  Please do pray for and welcome Linda as she begins the great adventure of Ministry among us.  Pray also that when you yourself stand to be judged by God;  he won’t emulate that other Mrs Robinson and say:  “You are the Weakest Link, Goodbye”.

With my love and prayers as always.


Ben Griffith