Tuesday, April 13, 2010


In this my last week of full time work, I realise that I need to think a bit more about what else I/we will consider doing, once we've moved to Pontcanna, got the house how we want it, made all the overdue catch up visits to family and friends, and found a different pace of life.

Life for the past forty years has been dictated by occupying a social role in relation to fellow Christians, defined by the Parish as the place to be. However busy or not the job may be, from time to time, the nature of the commitment and the solemn pledges on which it rests makes for ties akin to marriage, and that has not been without its conflicts and difficulties over the years.

In retirement I remain a priest and pastor, but for the first time become a volunteer, with more choices, fewer obligations, and a new sense of freedom to be more of a husband and father, without the excuses of the job to hide behind. As well as this I can play a different role in the community as a 'citizen', contributing the useful skills and experience as a helper, rather than initiator of projects. I don't have to remain politically neutral if I don't want to. I can join the fray, or turn my back on it. Both seem possible, depending upon my mood!

For the moment, a little back office support for Cardiff Business Safe in its crime prevention role is something that will keep my mind exercised, and give me a different kind of glimpse into the world of business. I'll be doing the same with Cardiff Street Carers' Forum also, as this evolves. We had a Representative Group meeting at County Hall this evening. Recently the pace has slackened somewhat, because the council officers we've been dealing with have been preoccupied with other project and not been able to give their full attention to seeing through what's begun. It's normal I guess. Everyone is keeping lots of balls in the air in their jobs, and there's always a gulf between imagination, ambition and reality. I can see that when I look back over my forty years as a cleric in the Church. Would it have been any different If I'd had the self confidence to pursue the path of being a priest in secular employment?

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