About this time last year we had the good fortune of running into a young priest in training at the Central Baptist church of Gisborne. Vince Kilpatrick was studying for his Bachelors in Theology at the Carey Baptist College based in Auckland. A short placement at the Gisborne Baptist Church saw Vince under the wise tutelage of Jim Mackintosh. While working with Jim Vince took Sunday services, and was at one time even a funeral celebrant.
Vince looked like a holy warrior from the days of yore. With a solemness and intensity of character that invoked the knights templar one couldn’t help but be interested by him. After complimenting each others beards (although I think he was just being courteous) we got to talking about the new Bay Stone Craft premises.
We knew it was important to have our new building blessed, we just couldn’t decide who would be right for the task. With his youthfulness, intensity, sincerity and his magnificent beard Vince was perfect for the job. I asked if he knew how to bless the place. He did.
It was an unpretentious ceremony. Solemn but relaxedly Vince recited bible passages spoken in both Maori and English. Afterwards we were left with a quiet feeling of hopefulness. There was a sense that good could come of this place. Perhaps our biggest hope was that in some small way we could help ease the pain of those who have lost somebody close to them.
Vince came back for a visit recently to see how things were getting on. He has since completed his Bachelors Degree in Theology. He still has a year of pastoral training before his studies are complete. We managed to get him to pose with office manager Colin Duffy for a photo.
Most of us are preoccupied with the coronavirus threat right now. Its important to stay home and self-isolate. But don’t loose your heads!