Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Annual General Excitement?

About a month after my 17th birthday the Rector handed me an electoral role form and invited me to fill it in.  There was mutterings from some quarters, as I hadn't yet been confirmed (our parish isn't one that promoted confirmation of the very young, preferring to wait until folks could reason things through).

As a member of the electoral role I was entitled to attend the AGM, so I did. There was some mutterings from some quarters, "This is just the AGM, nothing exciting will happen..."  They were wrong. The OHP (cutting edge technology back in the late 70's) blew 1 or 2 bulbs and there was an election...

Shortly afterwards the parish church was closed temporarily to allow it to be modernised (loo added), and during this time I started to attend the nearer daughter church which met in the church hall. A new vicar was appointed to the daughter church, unfortunately the vicarage he was given was a couple of miles away!  The daughter church duly decided that it was time to establish an identity and so formed a District Church council.  Now we had two AGM's to attend....  Back then in those early heady days we were the early church. Anything seemed possible, even speaking in tongues, but not at 9 O clock in the morning....  The diocese built a vicarage next to the hall.  In time we built our own church.  Even more amazingly, we raised the money to pay for it!  No mean feat for a small church plant in the suburbs, with the catchment area of predominantly social housing.

We have matured and grown complacent.  Adopting a 3 year cycle means that only a couple of posts need to be filled each year.  No more mad rushing around making sure that people were encouraged to stand.  The advantage of this system is that after two terms, you get a years break before you stand again and this system prevents the whole council remaining in post for ever.  The downside is that no-one can ever remember whose term of office is coming to an end...

Tonight, is our church AGM. A time to look back on the past year, and look forward to the future.  In the year ahead we will be celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the church. I wonder what else we will celebrate?