I went to Pudsey Parish Church this morning for the first time, and never before have I felt so welcomed into Church. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never felt ‘unwelcome’, I’ve just usually been left to my own devices. But within 5 minutes of sitting down with Cameron, a lovely lady called Naomi climbed over the chairs in front of us to come and say hi because she didn’t recognise us and thought we might be new. Which was absolutely lovely. She asked us all about ourselves and made us feel right at home.
And she caught us again after the service had finished to have a chat with us about what we thought and very strongly encouraged us to stay for cake after too (it worked, it was delicious). We also had a lovely chat with the Vicar who offered to talk to us about any questions we had (and even mentioned that he’d seen the blog from last week about my turning point at the evening with Archbishop John Sentamu).
The main theme running through the service (or at least it how it resonated with me) was that God loves everyone equally, whether you’ve been in the Church consistently, or whether you’ve just returned). And that you should live a life fully with God, rather than just being a spectator or a commentator, God wants us to love him and live with him completely, like he does with us.
After such a lovely welcome, there’s no doubt that I’ll be back again next week.