The next two months are going to be very different for me because I’ll be missing the support of our Assistant Priest Lesley Perry. Lesley had a hip replacement operation on Wednesday 25 September and she will be out of action for most of October and November. Our thoughts and prayers are with her.
Missing people is sadly a bit of a theme this month. Our newsletter editor, Amanda Duncombe-Shafto is leaving London with her fiance, Kai Capp. Amanda has done a great job working with Lesley Raymond, getting this newsletter off the ground. She also put a lot of work into our new website. She and Kai have been hugely generous to me over the last couple of years, inviting me around to seemingly endless suppers! And I remember their involvement in our Olympics project. We wish them well as they prepare for married life and make a home outside London. The good news is that Amanda’s role will be taken by Lucy Cutler, who comes to the 10.30 am service. More about that next month.
And we have three rather more sobering absences: members of our congregation who have died recently. Jenkins Coker died in Nigeria on 4 September. Our condolences go to his wife Henrietta and to the whole family. Grizel Snell, a member of St Philip’s for many years, has died in the last couple of weeks. As I write I am planning to go to a Service of Thanksgiving for Grizel in Wiltshire on Friday 4 October. Finally, Veronica Yu, who was married at St Philip’s last year to Frank Uhlmann, died on 5 August. I led her funeral at Putney Vale Cemetery on 16 August. We continue to remember husband, Frank Uhlmann, a member of our congregation, and her daughter Tania.
So many absences and farewells in just a few short weeks. At the same time, autumn is a time when new people tend to join us, and we look forward to getting to know them.