HAVING spent some time as a patient in St Richard’s Hospital, I am glad to add my tribute to many others to the excellent care provided.
I especially appreciated the ministry of the two chaplains, and receiving Holy Communion on Sunday when we said together St Richard’s prayer of thanksgiving for all that Jesus Christ suffered in dying for us on the cross.
As vicar of St Peter’s church, Westhampnett, for many years, I was reminded every day of that prayer, since many varied designs of the cross had been etched in the stone in the chancel by pilgrims as they visited the church while on the way to the shrine of St Richard in the cathedral.
Being one of the first churches built as part of St Wilfrid’s original mission to our county, St Peter’s church is a constant reminder that the diocese still has an ongoing mission to bring the good news of Jesus Christ to the people of Sussex, despite prophecies of doom from George Carey, former Archbishop of Canterbury, that the Church of England faces extinction if its remorseless decline cannot be halted.
Sadly, Anglicanism has a reputation for a vague and wavering faith that comes and goes.
Our national church needs to return to the firm foundation of a Christo-centric faith by adopting the prayer of St Richard and resolving to ‘Know Jesus Christ more clearly, love Him more dearly, and follow Him more nearly’.
Rev John Brown