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Assoc minister and Queen’s chaplain Cllr Rev Ann Easter knows all about being an embarrassing parent

PUBLISHED: 10:15 23 November 2016 | UPDATED: 10:15 23 November 2016

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We’ve seen all the great work around Children in Need, and it made me think of my children, who are not in need but sometimes thought they were – there are upsides and downsides about having a parent who’s a priest married to another priest, as you can imagine!

The upside is that you get free use of the church after hours – great for a game of spooky hide-and-seek – and sometimes you live in lovely houses with gardens big enough to pitch a marquee. The downside is that your mother is constantly embarrassing you.

I think that God made parents to be embarrassing – that’s what I told my children when I was singing our way around the supermarket. My son Dominic remembers a phone call with a girl he was desperately keen to impress being interrupted by my shouting to him that it was time for bed.

And when the campaign for women’s ordination intensified, I was regularly on television explaining the intimate physical difference between me and the Archbishop of Canterbury, which was clearly the only reason why he was a priest and I wasn’t!

But, as time goes by, along comes an even better gift from God that says that grandparents can be as embarrassing as they like, as when four-year-old Genevieve and I skip along the street.

I reckon that being a grandparent gives us some deeper insight into the nature of God who was not at all embarrassed to be one of us and who gives us families and communities so that we discover more about what love means. More from Ann


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