The Vicar's Letter (written by Reverend Coralie McCluskey, Priest in Charge of St Mary's Church in Eaton Bray) has been appearing in the villages Focus magazine since March 2011
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Vicar's Letter

July 2011

Reverend Coralie McCluskey, vicar of the Church of St Mary The Virgin, Eaton Bray with Edlesborough.

Tomorrow, June 11th, I'm off to Church Farm. Ardeley for the official launch of the Hertfordshire FCN (Farm Crisis Network) group. It has taken 2 years to get to this point and as coordinator of the group I'm really looking forward to the event. If you've not lost interest already you may be asking yourself what I'm talking about. Well, this is the other side of me, the Agricultural Chaplain, the farmer's daughter who would love to have some sheep, a saddleback pig or two and a cow in the vicarage garden. Sadly I have to make do with pigeons and grey squirrels. The compensation is the vegetable patch currently infested with horse radish, bindweed and couch grass but the beans, herbs and assorted green salad leaves are fighting back and there is a promising crop on the fruit trees and blackcurrant bushes.

What is Farm Crisis Network?
Farm Crisis Network (FCN) is a network of groups of volunteers drawn from the farming community and rural churches, ready to walk with farming people and families as they seek to resolve their problems. The last few years have seen some of the biggest changes in agriculture for decades. Major change is always difficult bringing strain and anxiety, other problems include: animal disease (foot and mouth, bluetongue and TB), debt, bereavement, stress, relationships, loneliness, inheritance, crop failure, low product prices, increasing bureaucracy and form filling. FCN supports over 1000 families every year.

The villages of this Benefice, Dagnall, Northall, Edlesborough and Eaton Bray are surrounded by beautiful countryside. Walking just a little of the Benefice boundary on Rogation Sunday the group was aware of crops growing, of livestock in the fields and the beauty and order of the countryside cared for by those who work in agriculture.

We do not know what difficulties the farmers are facing in our rural communities but farming matters. Farming matters because food production matters and farming matters because the environment matters, not just to us but to the whole world.

If you would like to learn more about the work of FCN or feel that you could help please do contact me and please pray for all farming families who work so hard, often in adverse conditions, to provide our food and look after our countryside.

Coralie


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About the Vicar's Letter

The Vicar's Letter has been appearing in the villages Focus magazine since August 2002.

The Rev. Peter Graham also used to publish The Vicar's Letter in the parish magazine of 1964. Please see the area for these.