Lorna wondered what was happening about this, - so here’s the latest news. The Diocese of Gloucester is linked with two (Dornakal and Karnataka Central) in the Church of South India, and for the past few years clergy from both countries have visited, spent time with and learned from each other…and there are clearly various practical ways in which affluent Gloucestershire can try to make things better for our brothers and sisters in South India too. WonderfulVicar was part of the last Gloucester foray to our link diocese, spending February in and around Bangalore, and came home gently glowing and saying “You must go one day”. With this in mind, when a Senior Diocesan Officer cornered me in the Cathedral on Maundy Thursday and asked if I’d like to be part of the next diocesan expedition, there was only one answer possible.
So, I’ve talked to the man in charge of curate training, who is happy for me to do this as my placement but also (blessings on him) quite willing to insist that I need further experience if I can find a church in ECUSA (or indeed PCUSA or variants thereon) that might be prepared to graft me onto them for a couple of weeks of “work experience” some time next year. I get to go to India, which is both terrifying and utterly amazing..All the planning and preparation is sorted by the diocese (which is music to my chaotic ENFP ears) and I can still pursue my longing to visit the States, meet blog friends irl and investigate churches that take seriously the education of adult parishioners….
Lorna, my friend, I’d love to visit you and your church in Finland, but I suspect that trying to stretch my placement to yet another continent might be pushing my luck a little, so I’ll just have to come under my own steam one day. Meanwhile, India should be happening in November,- I’ll miss TeenWonder’s 17th birthday and the arrival of his driving licence (this might be quite a wise move) but will be home safely in time for Advent. I know I will be gibbering with terror when departure day draws near, but right now I am simply overwhelmed with the opportunity to visit a country I’ve always longed to see, - and to call this “work”. Unnumbered blessings…….