Summer is drawing to a close. The evenings are getting darker just that little bit earlier, and we now place our weather hopes in a late summer (or early autumn) burst of sunshine. Next week the schools start again, and today I start my new ministry in our hostel. And yesterday our three candidates moved to the novitiate, to their own new beginnings. Inevitably, I find myself recalling my own journey into the Society: not just the physical journey, from candidate community to novitiate, and all the intermingled emotions, hopes, fears and excitement, but the wider, deeper, interior journey which got me there in the first place.
By the end of this month, whatever the weather, the autumn colours will be all around us, above and below: red, gold, russet, amber, copper, bronze, brown and every variant hue in between.
This month I'm reading Colossians, a lovely, fairly short epistle, filled with encouragement and instruction for living fully in Christ. The quote I've chosen is from a section my bible calls "Rules for Christian Households". But these rules are gently given, and make good advice for a new hostel warden, for new novices and for anyone seeking to live their call to God and to making known God's love...
As God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness and patience. Bear with one another, and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other... Above all, clothe yourselves with love. (3: 12-14)