Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Saint Swithun

Dear Fathers, Friends in Christ, 

Swithun, also spelled Swithin, was born in Wessex, England and was educated at the old monastery, Winchester, where he was ordained. He became chaplain to King Egbert of the West Saxons, who appointed him tutor of his son, Ethelwulf, and was one of the King's counselors. Swithun was named bishop of Winchester in 852 when Ethelwulf succeeded his father as king. Swithun built several churches and was known for his humility and his aid to the poor and needy. He died on July 2. A long-held superstition declares it will rain for forty days if it rains on his feast day of July 15, but the reason for and origin of this belief are unknown. 

All this off course happened a long time ago, but even today when the Church calender tells me it is Saint Swithun's it would be worth our while to see if we are able to learn something from this Saint. 
His write up tells us that he was well known for his humility and his aid to the poor and needy. 
During my preparation for ordination to the Priesthood you can imagine that I had to read a great number of books and yes a number of them focussed on being humble as a Priest , because we represent Christ in everything we do in His Name and He was a very humble person. When it comes to humility I have not always been so successful , especially in the last few years. Because in the Anglican Catholic Movement or Old Catholic Church there are so many streams and opinions and lack of tolerance of one another's Faith one encountered a lot of agression from others and intolerance and it is so easy to fall into a trap and answer back or write back in the most agressive way. But through prayer and in fact humbling myself and to apologigize to those I hurt I can say " Thank God " I am learning and improving". Because of our weak human nature and the fact that the devil is still around, I have to keep this prayer up and work hard at it. May our Lord Jesus , Who humbled Himself so much that He died for me, keep me on the straight and narrow. Amen to that. 

Hope it does not rain on Saint Swithun. 

Father Ed Bakker 
Anglican Catholic Church/Original Province 
Mission of Saint of Lindisfarne 
Bendigo - Victoria