Craig and Calum

Congratulations to Craig and Calum, two members of St Mary’s congregation whose Nuptial Mass I conducted yesterday afternoon.

Very often, the struggle towards equality seems to some people to take on the air of a pitched battle with people shouting their positions over the heads of others. The truth is, it really is an unbottling exercise – opening up a situation to let God’s Spirit make merry with those around.

Yesterday’s celebrations were like that. People from Anglican, Roman Catholic and Conservative Evangelical (and no doubt other) backgrounds gathered around a fine young couple because they love them and together we saw them make promises to one another that have at their essence all that is holy and all that it is true.

It was a genuinely joyful day and a wonderful privilege to share it with them.

We have a new priest!

Great rejoicing at St Mary’s last night. The Rev Chucks Iwuagwu was made a priest by Bishop Gregor in a service of great happiness.

Priestings are always emotional services. It is always a long journey to get to that moment and that in itself is but a turning point or milestone in a lifetime’s pilgrimage of ministry.

Chucks is the first curate that I’ve had and I can’t tell you how thrilled and proud I was to see him ordained last night. I would never have guessed a few years ago that I would have had a Nigerian curate. I do believe him to be a blessing to me and a blessing to the Church.

In the Episcopal Church we try to remember that someone ordained as a presbyter by a local bishop becomes at that moment a priest not merely in the Scottish Episcopal Church but a priest in the Church of God. It is our way of remembering that Chucks’s priesthood isn’t just for us but for the world.

We had a glorious mixture of things last night. Changing ringing in the tower, Handel, Messiaen and African Drumming in church. (Not all at the same time). It was a reminder of our diversity and and of Chucks’s diverse gifts.

I’ll have more to say about that and about Chucks’s gifts arriving at the manger and being celebrated at Epiphany tomorrow morning when Chucks will be celebrating his first masses.