Bishop of Bangor – Easter Message

This Easter seems to be one for firsts. My bishop this morning has released two different Easter messages (one first), one written and the other a video (another first).

The video is filmed in various locations around the diocese, (Bangor Cathedral, St. Seiriol’s Well, and Penmon beach), and ‘it follows the story of Jesus’ death, resurrection and appearances after his resurrection and examines the meaning of these events’.

Great to see even more advancements into the 21st century and the diocese using new methods of communicating the good news of the Gospel.

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Bangor Clergy Retreat 2014. End of retreat.

We’re at the end of the retreat now, and I think it has been a very fruitful time. True I haven’t been able to do half as much reading as I wanted or planned to, but there has been some wonderful space to pray and meditate and be creative. There has also been some wonderful time to spend with people. I didn’t quite realise how much I missed my colleagues and friends from other areas of the diocese until yesterday. The evenings have been great as well, hum……..except the incident with a bottle of wine while clearing away last night. Luckily nothing was damaged.

I started the retreat thinking about balance, that life balance which keeps you sane. Whenever thinking about this topic, my mind always turns to St Benedict and his rule. Work, prayer and creativity are all hugely important, but in there right balance, so that they neither become burdensome or neglected.

I’ve also had this passage going though my head and cropping up in reading:
For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings. Hosea 6:6

God desires nothing from us except love. He wants us to know him, and to know him well.

Being able to know and love God requires us to stop occasionally from our busy lives and enjoy his presence, to count the blessings you have received and give thanks for them.

This retreat has been a time to stop, and count my blessings. It’s been a time to be still from the business of life. It’s been a time for reconnecting, on so many different levels.

Thanks be to God.