Canon David Callard’s message on 12th July
Happy 60th Birthday to St George's! ‘The New Church’ as it used to be called is now getting mature and elderly. But how greatly loved it is. And how well it has served the Oakdale community down the years. We thank God today for all those who planned and built it in 1960. There are three reasons above all why I thank God for this beloved building.
Firstly, because it is a beacon of Light. No dim religious light here, but God's sunshine floods in through those great clear windows. And, after dark, when the lights are blazing inside, it looks from outside like a huge and glorious Lantern, proclaiming that Jesus is the Light of the World! The Cross on the tower carries that message far and wide.
Secondly, I thank God that while you are worshipping and praying in St George's, you can see the world carrying on outside! You can see people walking down Johnson Road, and vehicles whizzing around the corner into Darby's Lane. And that is an aid to prayer, for it earths us in reality, and reminds us of this world which God loves so much, and in which He calls us to serve Him.
Thirdly I thank God for St. George's - for the Church is People. And our Church's greatest gift to the world is a committed congregation of outward-looking Christians. You, my friends, are The Church of St. George! Today I echo the prayer of Dag Hammarskjold:
"FOR WHAT HAS BEEN - THANKS! FOR WHAT SHALL BE - YES!"
(David was Rector of Oakdale from 1993 - 2002)