28th July 2023

Many of you will remember our 15-year-old daughter, Judith, who died in 1979 – three months after her baptism. Last week she would have celebrated her 60th birthday. It’s difficult to imagine that teen-age girl as a mature woman!

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

Those familiar words by Laurence Binyon were part of a poem paying tribute to the young men killed in war, yet they could also apply to anyone who died young. But then maybe 60 is not so old! Then there are the more positive thoughts – would she have had a career, be married, have children (or even grandchildren!)?

In 1979 those thoughts were not uppermost in our minds. We were more concerned with dealing with our immediate grief and, not least, that of the rest of the family, especially her two younger brothers. Many years later one of her brothers recalled:

Tyndale friends were there to provide a level of love and support usually not found in other walks of life.

What is Tyndale, or any other local church here to do? To praise God, to proclaim the Gospel. Yes, but also to share in the sorrows – and joys – of its members and those of the local community. That was something Tyndale did for us in 1979 and I have no doubt will always do. Thank you Tyndale.

David T Roberts