Saturday, 24 March 2007

Calling or Climbing?

The clocks leap forward an hour tonight and we enter British Summer Time. Note that the Empire is alive and well in our time-keeping. No "Daylight Saving Time" for Britannia, but good old BRITISH Summer Time. Pity our poor Colonial cousins with their bland Eastern Standard Time and the like.

And "in the good ol' summer time" I can step back a bit from the rant. So what if the pension plans are changing? I never started out on this ministerial path seeking financial security in work or retirement. If that had been my goal I would have stayed in secular employment. It was my choice to follow the Call as I perceived it, and as the Church ratified it. I could have walked away.

Some years ago, when seeking a move to a new post, I applied for a Team Vicar vacancy down on the north Devon coast. It was a superbly beautiful area, and the churches and people were very pleasant. Having waited for two hours whilst the Interviewing panel made their deliberations the Rector came out and told me that I had been unsuccessful. The reason given was that the panel did not think that becoming a Team Vicar after I had been “caretaking” an urban Team during a vacancy for the past two years was enough of a “step up the ladder”. They had failed to grasp that I have never sought to ascend any “ladder” of preferment. In contrast to some I trained with, who clearly had their sights set on reaching higher levels (one from my own Tutor Group is now an Archdeacon), I see myself as working in a parish setting until I retire. And then enjoying some freedom of offering assistance to a church without all the administration. Maybe one result of the pension changes is that since I no longer have to work to 69 to gain full entitlement, I am freed to retire earlier if I so wish.

That’s if I live that long, since that may not be in the plan …..


  1. So you are a blogger now! Once you endured a year's study in the same place as I did. I was convinced the clocks sprung next week - never mind. How fast time goes. Is it really a year ago?

  2. It might be a year ago ... but since you have chosen to remain anonymous I can't really comment ...