REV MAX CROSS: Homecomings bring love and nervousness
The rector of Bedhampton on returning to the place he was born.
I love driving over Portsdown Hill when returning to Pompey from my travels.
Staring down into the city at night is at times so emotional that I need to stop at Mick’s for a burger and tea just to take in the view.
At least that’s my excuse!
Nevertheless, there is something about coming home to the family town that brings on those emotions.
I returned home in another way recently, as I became a church leader at Bedhampton.
I was born in Leigh Park, lived in Bedhampton and then raised in Purbrook. I even had my christening service at St Thomas’s Church, Bedhampton, so taking on this role really is a homecoming for me.
Like all family homecomings, there is much that is familiar, and then there are things that are new and have become a tradition in my absence. Not to mention a little nervousness. After all, even Jesus had a rough time when he returned home.
The familiar is the love that is shared among the family from both the congregation and the community. The welcome home from them says we are the same, we have always been and we are here for you.
I hope and pray that you have access to such love within your own community. If you don’t, perhaps you might find that love in your local church?
Then there are the unfamiliar traditions that have started in my absence. In Bedhampton, that’s the annual summer show.
It is a time when the family comes together on Bidbury Mead in preparation for, and to celebrate, the local community.
As I have met people, I can feel the excitement as they prepare and anticipate for this year’s gathering.
It’s happening from 2pm on Saturday, July 7, so come on down and meet us at the Bedhampton Summer Show.
For me, it will feel like something of a family gathering, so see you there.
St Thomas Church is in Bidbury Lane, Bedhampton. St Nicholas Church is in Belmont Grove, Bedhampton.
Go to bedhamptonparish.org.uk.