Busy, busy at this time of year. As well as extra services during Lent there is lots of planning to do for Holy Week itself. We're very blessed in our 3 Churches that many people are ready and willing to be involved in the liturgy - but it can mean a multiplication of meetings! Things are also pretty busy in the Tribunal department at the moment, with a lot of annulment cases reaching the judgement phase at the same time, where I am pretty heavily involved.
One of the great delights for me in recent years in the Church has been the introduction into our diocese of the permanent diaconate by Archbishop Peter. I've been involved in the formation of the men in various ways, one of which is being part of the selection panel which advises the Archbishop (or Diocesan Administreator at the moment) on who to accept for formation. We had oen such interview on Monday, and once again I was so impressed by the faith and dedication of these men who offer themselves. They have already been through a rigorous spiritual and psychological testing before reaching the panel, and our questions are quite challenging too. This man, like so many others over the years it has been running, answered with simplicity, honesty and faith. In particular I am always touched by their love for the Church - not a sentimental one, but a warm and realistic attachment to the Lord and his people. Very impressive - and Fr M really approves.