The forecast gave heavy showers...but they held off until the picnic ended. Then there was a spectacular downpour.
We'd had a very relaxed morning service - some might even suggest "chaotic" as an appropriate description. Though in it all we'd reflected on the Kingdom of God and our true home being in heaven with our heavenly Father.
(I must admit that while Gary was preaching about this my thoughts wandered for a moment or two to think about those who are now enjoying the place that Jesus has prepared for them there. And the families in Kilkeel, Annalong and Ballymartin are very much in my prayers these days.)
In church the young people received their Sunday Space prizes and we ended the worship time singing "We're marching in the light of God".
Meanwhile, out on the grass "Bounce Around" were setting up the assault course so, following the dismissal we threw open the French windows and the young folk poured out for an afternoon's exhausting fun.
Adults maintained a safe distance and sat in comfort around tables to enjoy picnic and conversation. People who often go home to empty houses enjoyed the fellowship and being part of the church family of all ages.
The very popular bubble machine (supplied by my Wee Sister) was a source of much innocent fun and laughter. What is it about running after those little rainbow reflecting globes? You can see from the shadows that we were enjoying glorious sunshine although the rain clouds were gathering beyond the Parish Halls.
It was a relaxing afternoon - even the glebewarden decided to test out the grass for comfort, with Barney at his side.
The photographs will be on display in the hall over the next few weeks so that we can reflect on the parish doing church together. We each have a part to play in the growth and development of Saint Nicholas' and in encouraging one another. The Annual Parish Picnic is one of those events that draws us closer to one another in fellowship. It is good for the young people to see the church family of all ages enjoying time together. It is good for more senior members to be encouraged by the life and energy of the young. It is good to be one of the people of God who worship in Saint Nicholas'!