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Latest Monthly Letter from the Dean

APRIL 2015

Dear Friends,

As time goes by, our culture is always developing and changing. So are developments and innovations which are able to make our lives healthier of more comfortable. Very often such progress can be seen as nothing but good. For instance, who could disagree with the hope that recent developments in cancer research have brought to cancer sufferers, through the availability of more effective treatment?

Sometimes, however, what is called 'progress' would more accurately be described as 'so-called progress'. An example of this is the widespread town planning policy of the 1970's, whereby streets of quirky but centuries-old medieval buildings were torn down wholesale, in order to make our urban environments 'modern'. These days it is frequently the 1970's buildings which are having to be redeveloped, due to major construction problems, whilst the historic built heritage they replaced has been lost forever.

It's a bit like that with the Christian faith at the moment. Less and less people within our general culture are feeling a need to focus their lives in any real way on Jesus Christ. This is not because of profound philosophical considerations on the most part, but rather just a sense that in busy lives most everyday needs are met through the pay-packet; through the supermarket, or through the doctor. These sentiments are usually held by family and friends too, so there seems no reason to look further for the meaning of life.

In spite of the seeming completeness of 'modern' existence, most people in their quieter moments want to know 'why they are here' and 'what will happen when they die'. The sadness of our contemporary situation is that among so many people it is simply not done to talk about such things, for fear of appearing weak or odd.

In spite of modern trends in belief (or lack of it!) Jesus Christ still holds out to us both the meaning of our existence and our eternal hope for the future. Sweep aside the now ubiquitous 'Easter bunny' and we find the traditional Easter story of our Lord's empty tomb, from which He rose having been crucified. In Scripture we learn that in the beginning it was through Jesus that we were created; it is through His crucifixion that we can find forgiveness and can be friends with God; it is through His glorious Easter-morn resurrection from the dead that we can have hope in turn of the gift of eternal life – in short that we can go to heaven!

Modern people may either side-step or ignore Jesus, but wise people hold on to a two-thousand year old celebration - that Jesus Christ is Lord and offers to each of us true fulfillment and true hope in life.

May you know His presence and joy this Easter and always.

John Edmondson

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