….The vicar tells us what a Sabbatical is and what he will be doing….
What is a Sabbatical?
A Sabbatical is “extended study leave” which means it’s a time away from the parish (usually 3 months) to do something that will encourage and refresh my ministry. All clergy are entitled to a Sabbatical every 10 years and I have been in ministry 17 years (13 years at St Mark’s) – so I think it is about time I took one!
I will be on Sabbatical from 10th July to the end of October (including annual leave)
What will I be doing?
I’ll be exploring the relationship between singing and faith and how singing can be used to encourage people to know and experience the love of God.
I will visit different groups and churches where singing is integral to their identity and learn from them how they experience God and share that with others.
The first 5 weeks will be in the USA where I will attend a singing conference in Dallas followed by visiting churches in Dallas, San Francisco and New York. The family are joining me out there so we will have time for a holiday too!
Back in the UK, I’m visiting singing projects around the country and talking to singing practitioners to learn how they encourage others to sing and build community.
I have left time for prayer and rest, as I reflect on what I have experienced and put some of these into practice. I plan to use the end of my leave to try out a few ideas that will explore some of the things I have learned.
Hopefully I will come back refreshed and enthusiastic, but also with resources and ideas to share. I have already been invited by Wydale Hall to run a day on singing in October and am leading a service for the NSGM in November.
Please pray for me whilst I am away and for the family; also for the leadership at St Mark’s and St Mary’s that this time will be a blessing for us all!