As the benefice faces an unknown time without a Rector, there can seem to be a sense that we lack a leader, but actually, there is nothing to worry about.
The parishes will be managed on a daily basis by the Church Wardens of each church. There will also be very little difference to the regular pattern of worship, the only change being to the 9:30 service on the second Sunday of each month which will, in the vacancy, be a service of morning prayer led by our very own Margaret Barr.
Everything else stays same.
Often vacancies are seen as a fallow season but not for our benefice as the missional, social and pastoral activities go from strength to strength.
This is due the hard work and dedication of many within our benefice, and we all owe them our appreciation for their ongoing work.
There is another element that is even more significant, and that is the movement of Spirit within the benefice.
Now, more than ever, we need to be praying for the guidance and intervention of the Holy Spirit.
The Celtic saints often set off on their mission voyages in a coracle which is a small rudderless boat, and they allowed the current to take them where it chose with the influence of the Spirit.
The coracle represents a trust in the Spirit:
"It is a symbol of faithful vulnerability - the stories of the early saint's Brendan and Columba risking all to carry a message of grace and to share life with others, with all the exposure that requires.
It is symbolic of response to the environment - learning to read the culture of our time, responding to the Spirit's leading within it.
And it symbolises of simplicity and radical commitment - an image of the exposure of the whole of life to the claims of the gospel"*.
As we head off into uncharted waters, we may seem rudderless but we are not without direction, and as we focus on prayer we are directed by the Spirit to new and exciting adventures with our God.
*The Oracle Trust