"End to End via the Margins"
Thank you very much for all your emails and good wishes. I apologise that from time to time I haven't got the time to answer each one individually. They do cheer me up.
Another day of lifts - to the start and from the end... it doesn't quite feel like walking it, although it is. Fortunately the temperatures were down a fraction and there was some breeze. They say it's going to become cold in a day or two.
I was walking through the suburbs of Leamington Spa on the way to a very helpful visit to Lillington Free Church, when I made way for a man pushing a shopping trolley carrying a precarious, tall structure of poles and plastic discs. "It's the leaning tower of pizza", he explained. I bet that's what he tells everyone.
Then I made my way to agricultural showground at Stoneleigh for a visit to Jenny Carpenter at the Arthur Rank Centre, the national centre for rural chaplaincy and the churches' rural consultancy. She was able to explain lots of things that were on my mind and set me right on one or two things. For instance, just before I got to the site I had seen some big bags of McCain potatoes. (You remember McCain - frozen chips etc..) All very well until I realised they were seed potatoes. Apparently the big purchasers of produce can have a lot of control over the whole farming process. They can supply or specify the seed, they can create exclusive contracts so the farmer cannot supply produce to anyone else, they can sometimes own the whole process, with the farmer as a sort of service provider. Jenny also kindly agreed to be asked the questions about change.
People have been kind. Thank you very much to everyone who has helped so far.Pictures from today...
Leamington in the sunshine, being a spa town
Jenny Carpenter and Johanneka Sytsema outside the Arthur Rank Centre
Shrine and memorial seat: Lee Rourke
Living God, we give you thanks.
Thank you for the work of chaplains
to agriculture and the rural economy,
at a time when the countryside is still
emerging from the shadow of Foot and Mouth Disease,
is still affected by post-BSE restrictions,
is still adjusting to changes
in the global economy and the trading of food.
God bless the chaplains and strengthen them, we pray.
Help them when they deal with people under extreme stress.
Let the countryside live,
for the sake of everybody.
Lord, in your mercy ... hear our prayer.
|© Bob Warwicker. The words here may be reproduced freely, but not for gain, or without attribution. All alterations must have the permission of the author.|