I used to be chaplain at Christ Church Jebel Ali – an excellent church which I recommend to all who still live within range of Jebel Ali or Academic City (Fridays 9.30am, Saturdays 9.30am and Sundays 7.30pm – directions here)
After five months away on sabbatical, also finding a new parish, I am on a two month visit as a locum in ‘our’ church of St. Martin’s Sharjah. Of course I popped into ‘our’ office in Jebel Ali to see the office staff, and hope one weekend to see the congregation in Jebel Ali. I hope I can make it to the ‘Ways of praying for healing and wholeness’ retreat ‘we’ have next Saturday, June 13th, at 1pm with ‘our’ Diocesan Spirituality Team visiting us.
But after five months away, shouldn’t I be talking of ‘your’ church, ‘your’ diocese, and the retreat ‘you’ have next Saturday?
How big is ‘your’ church? Is your sight and care only for the network of people you talk to after service?
For myself I’m really enjoying being back now I’m refreshed from a while away. I’ve been on the bus to Abu Dhabi for ‘our’ Gulf Clergy Day (very thought provoking day with prayer for each other), and the bus to Sharjah seeing parts of Dubai I haven’t seen since I first came, when I explored many different ways to beat the traffic between Sharjah and Dubai. Buses are SO different from when we first came to Dubai 12 years ago and I recommend them too if you live near a stop. Another change I like is that the Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road now seems to be called (in spoken English) the MBZ which goes well with the ‘Sheikh Zayed’ (or Sheikh Zee, for Americans ;-). Being in Sharjah at the moment I have to be careful about talking about ‘our’ buses and ‘my’ city but I’m enjoying the SZR and the MBZ and the glorious wonder of all that ‘our’ CDSNE congregations are doing. Join us: Jebel Ali, see above. Sharjah: Fridays 11am, Sundays 7.45pm. Or the ‘Ways of praying’ retreat next Saturday at 1pm.