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THIS WEEK Beach Tavern Development: Time to find a sensible solution

COMMUNITY New arts and crafts group launches for Pevensey Bay in January 2019

BUSINESS Action in Rural Sussex back in Pevensey Bay

image credit: Father Tony Windross

Tony Windross, the new ‘vicar of Pevensey’ as he descibes his role in the community, now writes for the Pevensey Bay Journal. Here in his column he asks a simple question, is this the time to own our ignorance?— Bay Life, Sunday 3 June

Answers on a postcard please!
Do you think you’re ignorant? Or do you think you know it all? If it’s the former – you’re being honest. If it’s the latter – you’re kidding yourself! The word ignorant comes from the Latin – for ‘do not know’. And there’s absolutely no shame in that! If we’re honest – most of us are ignorant about well everything. But we don’t like to admit it – perhaps especially to ourselves.

We like to feel we know what’s what – and woe betide any politicians who admit they haven’t got much of a clue as to how to solve (for example) the crisis in Syria – or (dare I mention it?) Brexit. We expect them to have instant answers to any question that gets thrown at them. Which would be a ridiculous burden to place on Einstein – let alone anyone else.

Philosophy has been defined as ‘an unusually stubborn attempt to think clearly’ – and we need a lot more of it. Just as we need a lot more honesty, when it comes to owning our ignorance – and being open as to just how tricky life can be.

All this messy stuff came bubbling up the other day, when we helped out someone who’d come to the vicarage door – and then had a procession of even needier souls turning up. Were we wrong to give money to any of them? Should we have sent them packing, with a flea in their ears? I’ve come across people who would do precisely that. People with clear and definite answers as to how to deal with ‘those sort’ – along the lines of ‘they’re all idle scroungers – who need to get a job and stand on their own two feet!’

I’m sure some are scroungers – and I’m sure I’ve been ripped off sometimes. But should harshness be the default response to those in need? What if your £5 managed to keep someone from dying of cold? What if you hadn’t given it? How certain are you that your response would be the appropriate one? How do you decide what’s right and what’s wrong? Does anybody know? Answers on a postcard, please!

Tony Windross, the vicar of Pevensey

We welcome Father Tony Windross, the new ‘vicar of Pevensey’, to the pages of the Journal. His work as an author writer is marked. The Thoughtful Guide to Faith (2003) received interesting reviews. John Shelby “Jack” Spong, a retired American bishop of the Episcopal Church and a liberal Christian theologian, said this book will escape the walls of the church and be debated everywhere.

Edition 18, Saturday 26 May: The Pevensey Bay Journal, now available in local newsagents, priced 40pence. The paper is also available as a full digital download on subscription, 10 issues at £6.50, delivered direct to your desktop on the day of publication.