In a few weeks' time delegates will assemble in Edinburgh for the 2014 General Synod of the Scottish Episcopal Church. For our denomination, this country's Anglicans, this is a very important few days, as this is the occasion when the business of the church, everything from worship to mission to social action to laws, this business is reviewed, debated, and changes are made (or otherwise). This is an expensive business, as folk travel from the far flung reaches of our diocese, and a great deal of many people's time is committed..
Reading the papers, I note that this year we are invited to debate moving the day that commemorates John Mason Neale by two days, from 9th August to 7th August. This is a more accurate day for J M Neale, who died on the 6th August 1866, but as this is the feast of the transfiguration, the 7th is usually observed in other provinces. The opportunity to do this arises from the decision at the General Synod in 2013 to move St Boisil's day from 7th August to the 7th July, a date that suits his local area around Melrose better, as they observe this medieval tradition anyway.
We live in times of great social change, of crises of national identity, of revolutions in legal and social ideas about families and relationships and the essence of humanity. We are also part of a church under pressure, a church that is declining in numbers and finance, a church that strives to be relevant in a world that seems increasing disinterested..
We may discuss some of that too.
Here's another picture of a nice sunny day on Bute.