From the Vicar:
Yes, I now am Canon Ken, instead of Vicar Ken, or Father Ken. It comes with the appointment. For the duration of my ministry as Canon of the Cathedral, my official title in writing is: The Rev’d Canon Kenneth Dimmick. It sounds impressive doesn’t it? Don’t let it fool you. I am just the same humble country parson you’ve always known me to be.
I want to say thank you to the Bishop for having appointed me as a Canon of the Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity in Gibraltar. Last Sunday, as you all were shivering in the morning chill of the Joint Ecumenical Anglican / Old Catholic Eucharist in Stuttgart, I was standing before the altar of the Cathedral dressed in a gold cope, reciting my oath of office, witnessed by the Dean and People of the Cathedral congregation. The warm Mediterranean sun streamed through the windows into the 1830-ish building with a Moorish style architecture. Sadly, my oath of office does not require me to return to Gibraltar on a regular basis, nor give me any funding with which I might have wanted to do so. The people were very kind. As I preached they smiled warmly just as you do when I preach at St. Catherine’s. It is impossible to know whether the smiles indicate that they like what they are hearing, or like what they are thinking about doing as soon as church is finished. Either way smiles are better than frowning, or even worse, snoring. In my sermon I told them the story of Catherine Masson, her mother, the King of Württemberg, his mother, the Czar, and the Egyptian 4th century saint who binds them together to us 160 or so years later. ( Strange, isn’t it?,…. that wherever I preach, St. Catherine’s in Stuttgart seems to be part of my homiletical stream of consciousness.)
The tour of the Rock takes only about half a day, so Saturday afternoon I went out by public bus to the Europa point, the southeastern-most tip of the Gibraltar peninsula. Sitting at a sidewalk cafe, I ate some Moroccan-style lamb, and looked out to the right into the Atlantic Ocean, not quite able to see my homeland on the other side. I looked out to the left into the Mediterranean Sea with glimpses of the Spanish Coast speckled with lots of white apartment blocks, no doubt filled with happy tourists from cold and cloudy climes. Straight ahead I could see North Africa, so near, and not at all strange looking. And do you know what I was thinking? I was wondering what my friends in Stuttgart were doing on a Sunday afternoon.
I hope you had a good Sunday last Sunday. May next Sunday also be good. It will be my last Sunday before flying back across the Atlantic for my yearly family visit in Texas. Even there you will all be with me in my heart and mind. I will be attending the Texas Diocesan Convention, for all the clergy and delegates, this year being held in the seaside town of Galveston. I will try to find a sidewalk cafe there where I can sit in the sunny sea breezes, eating some Mexican goat, and look out into the Gulf of Mexico and think of you, and our strange but wonderful life together in Stuttgart.
News and Announcements
Congrats to Yvonne Kendall..… for the article about her and her art http://www.gea.de/nachrichten/kultur/stoffkunst+von+yvonne+kendall++wir+waren+wild.5178980.htm Yvonne is the artist who made the wonderful cloth draped cross which hangs over our little altar in the Anglican Centre.
Bible Study or Bible Fellowship…. Every Wednesday, even during the vicar’s absense. On the weeks he is here, it is called a Bible Study. On the weeks he is gone, it is a Bible Fellowship. Everyone is welcome to give it a try. The regulars will welcome you.
For the Bishop’s Visit: We now have 2 to be confirmed and 3 to be baptised during the visit of Bishop David Hamid in March. For those who might still be insterested in being Confirmed or Recieved into the Anglican Church, classes will begin this Sunday afternoon. Contact the vicar if you want to know more. (Anyone is welcome to come to the classes, even if already confirmed. A refresher course from time to time is a good idea.) The Vicar is also looking for ideas on how best we can entertain Bishop David after our service on 19 March. What do you think would be a good idea?
World Day of Prayer ….. will focus this year on the Philippines. Our local Filipina, Naomi B, is helping with preparations. To that end, there will be a meeting/ event in the Coffee Room of the Katharinenkirche, 2 Feb, Thursday, tomorrow night at 19:00. Anyone, man or woman, is welcome to come and hear about how the World Day of Prayer, later this year, will help us pray for the people of the Philippines.
The Feast of the Presentation.… 2 February…. will be transferred to Sunay, 5 February, for musical and lectionary purposes. The Gospel reading of the day will be the story of Sts. Mary and Joseph bringing the baby Jesus to the Temple in Jerusalem for a offering of thanksgiving. While there, the baby is recognized by two elerly people, Simeon and Anna, who realize he is the long-awaited one.
The English Church in Ulm will meet this coming Sunday, the 1st Sunday of February at 17:30. If you would like to joing Canon Ken and any others who are going over to Ulm, you would be most welcome. Let him know in advance so that transport arrangement can be made.
The Vicar’s Next Travel plans: His annual trip to Texas for his family visit will begin at Stuttgart Fluhafen on Tuesday, 7 February. He will arrive Houston on 8 February. 9-11 February he will be in Galveston for the diocesan convention, before heading to Wharton, the town where his brother lives. He will return to Stuttgart, God willing, on 21 February. During his absence, all services and pastoral care will continue as normal. Please contact one of the wardens if, during this time, you require some sort of pastoral attention.
Pancake Day…..Sunday 26 February after church. Come hungry. Leave satisfied.
Ash Wednesday Schedule – Wednesday 1st March
Early service – without Holy Communion 7:30am – in church
Noontime service – with Holy Communion 12:00 – in church
Evening service … In the Anglican Centre at 19:00…
Or if your German is good you are welcome at the Old Catholic service in the church at 1830
At our last meeting we talked about the World Day of Prayer, which is to take place on Friday, 3rd March in St. Catherine’s. We discussed a prayer which Naomi had received from a fellow Philipine woman and which she had translated into English and then into German. She hopes it will be included in the service. Please note that our next meeting will not be on the third Thursday of the month but on the fourth, ie Thursday, 23rd Feburary 2017 from 10 until 12 in the Anglican Centre. The change in the date is to enable Ken to be with us after he returns from his trip to Texas. We are planning on having a repair session for the hymns and prayer books so come armed with strong glue. Alison firstname.lastname@example.org
Ladies’ Evening Group
We will meet on Monday 13th February – from 19:00 at Yaz on Calwer Str. http://www.hallo-yaz.de/
Please let Anne know if you are planning to join us. email@example.com
Round table on Brexit
On 18th January I attended a Brexit Round Table in Brussels chaired by Ambassador Rose and Emma Gibbons, Deputy Head of Mission to the EU. Lord Bridges shared the opening of the meeting by video conference and assured the meeting that the Government is anxious that smaller issues should not be forgotten. The conferencing facilities allowed everything to be recorded in London.
This is not the place for a detailed account, but below is a list of the issues which were aired, many at length, and you are invited to contact me if you would like further information any of them on firstname.lastname@example.org, giving your phone number if you would like to speak about the matter personally. Please note this meeting was not a decision-making body, but we all felt that the issues are being taken seriously, and is intended to be followed up by a further meeting when appropriate.
The main concerns were ones of interest to private citzens: pensions and finance, double taxation, inheritance legislation, interest on investments, health care (also for temporary residents) & social security cover, seconded workers, recruitment of UK clergy for Eureopean posts, protection for returning British clergy, citizenship/identity/voting rights, the position of pensioners abroad.
In conclusion it was proposed to hold another round table to monitor progress, unless chaplaincies wish to approach the ambassadors in theit own countries (these do not appear to me to be mutually exclusive). I would be most happy to attend any future meetings on your behalf.
PS There is also an article in the Church Times at:http://europe.anglican.org/news/news/post/1199-towards-a-post-brexit-diocese