Easter 2024: Message from the Rydal Penrhos School Chaplain, Rev’d Dr Rob Beamish
March 29, 2024

This Easter, Rydal Penrhos School Chaplain, Rev’d Dr Rob Beamish, reflects on the question: “What kind of person am I, and who do I want to be?

“The Lent term has just concluded with our Easter service where we heard beautiful music, sang together, and thought about the key moments of that first Easter. Jesus indeed had a difficult choice to make. He could have delayed the events of Good Friday, but he chose to face what was before him.

“A few weeks ago I was at a clergy conference, and as has been the pattern over the last few years I hosted a quiz. I put on a fancy jacket and tried out my new, but not very imaginative catch phrase, ‘let’s quiz.’

“This year we started strong with general knowledge, moved into guess the song, then the quite niche but ever-popular church history round, and finished with a bit of food & wine into Sport. All good I thought. Well, that was until we got to the results. I added up the scores, announced the winners with great fanfare, handed out chocolate medals which were promptly eaten; and then sat back reflecting on a job well done.

“As I basked in the glory of a quiz successfully delivered, I took a sideways glance at the score sheet, and it was obvious that my mental arithmetic had failed me. The supposed winners had in fact come third, and there was a tie for first place which should have led to a glorious nail-biting conclusion! It was at this point that I had a choice to make.

“This season is an opportunity for personal reflection; what kind of person am I, who do I want to be?  And here was my moment. I had two options, keep quiet and let the revelry continue, or admit my mistake, make it right, and suffer the consequences!

“In the Old Testament, the prophet Micah asks the question ‘what does the Lord require of you’, his answer is both simple and challenging at the same time, ‘Act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with your God.’ There is without a doubt a need in our world for justice, a need for those times when we swallow our pride and trust in the compassion of others. For all of us there will be those moments big or small, when we must decide what kind of person we want to be.

“So I made a choice, I admitted that there had been a mistake, the joint winners were named, some chocolate was found, and I resigned as quizmaster. However, the consensus was that I should keep the role, but use a calculator next time or at least sit in on some lessons at school!

“Whatever our relationship with the Easter story, Jesus is a great example of one who sacrificed his own comfort for others. John Wesley stated that we should seek do all the good we can whatever the circumstances may be whether big or small, visible, or invisible. May we all be encouraged this Easter season to see justice and mercy, walking in humility as we seek to be the best versions of ourselves. Part of that for me is to spend more time in the maths department!”