Writing this during the afternoon of Good Friday, it truly seems that Spring has sprung. It’s been a glorious day and at church we’ve sated ourselves on a rich feast of poetry. Our morning service included poems by Geoffrey Rust, inspired by Christ’s Seven Last Words from the Cross. Then, sustained by coffee and hot cross buns, a group of us walked around Whitlingham Broad, at intervals reading poems by Malcolm Guite based on the Station of the Cross. They are fantastic, with wonderful depths of meaning, and eloquent expressions of emotion. And if you’re thinking - surely that’s the wrong way round? Well, hey - we all know that in Norfolk we like to “do different”.

Our Passover Meal on Maundy Thursday (going backwards again!) was very well attended, providing nourishment for the body and the spirit. I think my husband will be dreaming about making lamb stew for weeks, but it was worth it because it all got eaten up and the children were especially appreciative. I had bought vast quantities of rocket to serve as “bitter herbs” representing the bitter life of slavery endured by the Israelites in Egypt. I also had a huge bagful of lamb bones which came with the lamb. A lamb bone was referred to during the service, prompting the telling of the Passover story, when the Israelites ate a meal of lamb immediately before their escape. Unfortunately, the rocket and the bone inadvertently got left at home in our fridge, but it didn’t really matter.

Oh to be efficient, and not forgetful! I try so hard. My trying involves “the bag method” - a brilliant idea! I am the original bag lady. I organise my life in bags. I have one that I always bring to church, two or three that I bring to Messy Church, one containing books I refer to when writing sermons, another with books that are useful for Meditation, and - can you believe it? - one with all my books about, and translations of, the writings of Julian of Norwich. I also have non-church-related bags, but you don’t want to know about those.

You may have noticed that, since becoming priest-in-charge, I have a new email address: revrosietrowse@gmail.com. This is meant for church-related emails, in an attempt to get the various areas of my life into separate compartments, to avoid confusion. I’m not sure it will work. I remember, some time ago I acquired an old-fashioned metal filing cabinet that was nearly as tall as me, thinking it would help me be more organised. In fact I just became a disorganised person with a filing cabinet, so a few years later we got rid of it. Anyway, whichever email address you use, I will get your messages and respond as soon as I can.

But back to Julian. The Church of England commemorates her on 8th May, as a “Lesser Festival”. Well, to me, Julian is very far from “Lesser”. She is Great! I tell people she changed my life. Nobody else would have noticed that, but I sometimes wonder if I would have been ordained if I hadn’t discovered Julian. What she says about God’s love makes perfect sense to me; that we can completely rely on God’s unconditional love and care for the whole of creation, as expressed in her passage about the hazelnut. “He showed me a little thing, the quantity of a hazel nut in the palm of my hand, and it was as round as a ball. I looked upon it with the eye of my understanding, and thought, 'What may this be?' And it was generally answered thus, 'It is all that is made.' I marvelled how it might last, for I thought it might suddenly have fallen to nothing for littleness. And I was answered in my understanding: It lasts and ever shall, for God loves it. And so all things have their being by the love of God.”

I love this passage, and when things seem tough, I often repeat Julian’s most famous sentence to myself:

All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.” AMEN.

Rosie.