Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Tiberias, here I come!

The bags are more or less packed, but there is always something I have missed which I somehow have to squeeze in. Yesterday I even resorted to buying a bigger suitcase to give me more space (just hope that at 06.30 in the morning, the check-in person will not be awake to just how overweight my case is!). I have of course been in this situation so many times before, but I always seem to end up wearing 2 layers of clothes, whilst my fellow passengers travel wearing T-Shirts!

It really shouldn’t be like this, as the manse at Tiberias is apparently pretty well furnished, with plenty of furniture, bed linen, plates, glasses, etc. It is a far cry from Zambia, where ‘furnished accommodation’ in my first two ‘stations’ meant a steel bed frame and a couple of metal chairs with one piece of foam each to sit on. No wardrobe, so I would just hang my clothes on nails on the wall! No problems like that in Tiberias. In fact, the manse has a walk-in, re-enforced cupboard (a dressing-room, in fact), which doubles as my bomb shelter in case of emergency.

Over the last few weeks I have managed to meet up with a number of people with Tiberias or Israel/Palestine connections, which has been so valuable. Thus, I am filled with a tremendous sense of excitement and anticipation, as I enter this new phase of my life/ ministry, but also almost overwhelmed by the responsibility of it all. It will, of course, be good to return to a place where I was a volunteer 27 (!) years ago, but of course the place has changed and I have changed in the intervening years, whilst the issues of Israel/Palestine seem to have become even more complicated. However, I relish the challenge of being part of the church’s ministry in that troubled but fascinating area.

Your prayers, as always, will be much appreciated!

10 comments:

  1. Wishing you God's blessing as you start out on this new stage of your ministry, Colin.

    And we all look forward to hearing from you in this blog!

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  2. Gwen & Mark Thompson (ex St Andrew's Jerusalem)
    It is wonderful to know that there will be a Minister resident in Tiberias and the ministry will continue. May God bless you as you travel and settle into the life and ministry God has prepared for you.
    We look forward to reading your blogs and re-kindling some wonderful memories.

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  3. It was good to meet with you in Zambia Colin. My prayers are very much with you as you move to the Holy Land and get settled in at Tiberias.

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  4. Every blessing Colin on your beginnings in Tiberias, my prayers will be with you each day. Thanks so much for your recent visit.

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  5. Hi Colin, looking forward to meeting you here in Tiberias, Galilee. Hope you realise what you'e letting yourself in for!
    Will be in touch soon.
    Margaret

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  6. Arrick Wilkinson1 October 2009 21:35

    Dear Colin

    Nan & I have you in our prayers as you embark on this new stage of your ministry. You may, or may not, remember us; we were friends of Forbes and members of his church in Strathaven. I essentially was the locum in Larkhall Trinity when you left, although I was only a reader in training then.

    Since then I have entered the full time ministry and am minister at Fisherton l/w Kirkoswald in Ayr Presbytery. (Incidentally, I was interim moderator at Auchinleck and Catrine a couple of years ago.)

    Nan & I have visited the Holy Lands three times and it is still a major area of interest to us, so we will be following you blog with interest.

    Best wishes to you in what I am sure will be a challenging and rewarding ministry.

    Arrick & Nan

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  7. CDJ, you have always been an inspiration to many including me. I would like to emphasise that you made it possible and simple for me to travel into the Unitrd Kingdom though other students like Moses had not succeeded. I was trying to imagine the difference between the two countries, UK and Israel and seems like they are two different places all together. Please take extra care like you did when you were in my country. We know you as a man of good morals and very hard workig. God bless you so much.

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  8. Its great to have been a part of what the Lord was doing in you in Zambia and specifically at Trinity Congregation. You've had such a great impact on my life and I thank God for you. Keep on with the great work.

    Mathias

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  9. Great to be able to hear more of what you are doing now that you have left Zambia. You may not remember me but I am a member of Trinity Larkhall I am Margaret Graham you were my inspiration when I became Church treasurer and then when I was ordained as an elder. Many of Trinity members still remember you and speak fondly on e such person is Bunty Dickson. There has be a lot of changes in Trinity during 2009.
    Colin I wish all God's Blessings in your new life and ministries in Tiberius and now that I and follow you on this blogg I will speak again.
    Best Wishes

    Margaret Graham

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  10. Hi Colin,

    Last, maybe, but hopefully not least, and so glad to find all this stuff! Good on you. Your decision has been right, and your presence in Israel will help so many people. We are delighted to be able to hear first-hand such positive things about interaction with the various groups. And isn't it amazing what you can do with a congregation of 1!!! All blessings from all of us, Marion

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