When Pte Curtis Welsbys friend, Jamie, died in Afghanistan just weeks before their battalion was to return to the U.K. the 20-year-old from  Manchester, turned to the Bible. Pte Welsby, from the 1 st Battalion the Mercian Regiment, carried an active service testament from 1916 in his  body armour. ‘I was upset, I was angry’, Pte Welsby recalls that time in March 2013, ‘We all had our body armour on. I noticed the Bible popping out a little bit from my pocket. I went to put it back and then I thought, No, I’m going to read it. I need something to make me feel good right now. Randomly, he found himself at Revelation and read in Chapter 21 verse 4: And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more  pain: for the former things are passed away. ‘I read it over and over again, he says, And I thought, theres nothing for Jamie to worry about now. It was exactly what I needed to read, because what happened   was so totally devastating andunexpected’. Pte Welsbys little New Testament has seen ve conicts. It first belonged to his great-great grandfather, Jay Greenwood, a teenager who fought in the First World War having lied about his age. It was passed on to his great grandfather who took it with him to the battleelds of the Second World War. It then travelled to Korea with Pte Welsbys grandfather and to Northern Ireland with his uncle. Its thin pages are worn  with use and it readily falls open both at Acts and John. But it was Revelation that spoke to Pte Welsby on his tour of Afghanistan. Arriving in  Afghanistan was scary’, he recalls. ‘When you leave Camp Bastion you realise that its real. Its you and your friends now. I kept my Bible with  me in my pocket all the time and it calmed me down. I thought that God would be looking down over me. I had a sense of Him being with me’. ‘I would pull it out and read it when we went on patrol and I had a tingling feeling go through my body every time. Anything could happen.  Nobody had a clue what would happen. But when I picked up my Bible, I felt that nothingwould happen to us. We got into reghts, but we always got out of them. All five generations of Pte Welsbys family have served in the Infantry, so it is perhaps surprising that both the Bible and men survived. ‘It means a lot to me, he says, All of my family has read it. I wish I could know what they read. But me and my granddad  were very close and we both liked exactly the same things. I reckon he had a hand in saying, Stop at that page. I reckon somehow he guided me to reading Revelation”* We know a lot about the past  ours and the history of our race. We know quite a lot about the present. But the fact is we know nothing about  what might or will happen to us even five minutes ahead. In a few seconds our life can be turned upside down. We are introduced to a stranger who eventually becomes our life partner. The doctor tells us we are pregnant – or seriously ill. We get the sack or are offered a  wonderful new job. Anything from a road trafc accident to a nancial windfall to a leak in the kitchen ceiling can change everything in an instant. So, it’s not surprising that we are puzzled by the future. The past can be cherished – memories are precious. The present is to be lived to the best of our ability. Butwhat can we do about the future? Our best laid plans are provisional, at best. No wonder soothsayers, fortune tellers and the rest have always done well. For people who believe in God there is, however, a bit of help in his Name. In Hebrew it is ‘Yahweh’ (often wrongly transcribed as ‘Jehovah). It means, more or less, I AM. God simply exists, a kind of permanent present tense. So, while we see past, present and future, He is just the Existing One. Yes, I know that sounds baffling, but it makes sense that the Creator of  everything cant be part of the time, space and matter that He created. Your Friend and Vicar Canon Phillip p.s. look at the logo for the Invictus Games! *taken from ‘Hear my Cry (Words for when there are no words) Published by Bible Society. 2014 ISBN: 978 0 -564  04923  3 P. 110  111.
PARISH OF KILLAY
The Church in Wales in the Diocese of Swansea & Brecon
St Hilary & St Martin
  PLWYF CILÂ
Copyright Parish of Killay 2018
When Pte Curtis Welsbys friend, Jamie, died in  Afghanistan just weeks before their battalion was to  return to the U.K. the 20-year-old from Manchester,  turned to the Bible. Pte Welsby, from the 1 st Battalion the Mercian Regiment, carried an active service testament from 1916 in his body armour. ‘I was upset, I was angry’, Pte Welsby recalls that  time in March 2013, ‘We all had our body armour on.  I noticed the Bible popping out a little bit from my pocket. I went to put it back and then I thought, No, I’m going to read it. I need something to make me  feel good right now. Randomly, he found himself at Revelation and read in Chapter 21 verse 4: And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and  there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the  former things are passed away. ‘I read it over and over again, he says, And I  thought, theres nothing for Jamie to worry about now. It was exactly what I needed to read, because what happened   was so totally devastating andunexpected’. Pte Welsbys little New Testament has seen ve conicts. It first belonged to his great-great grandfather, Jay Greenwood, a teenager who fought in the First World War having lied about his age. It was passed on to his great grandfather who took it with him to the battleelds of the Second World War. It  then travelled to Korea with Pte Welsbys grandfather  and to Northern Ireland with his uncle. Its thin pages are worn with use and it readily falls open both at Acts and John. But it was Revelation that spoke to Pte Welsby on his tour of Afghanistan. Arriving in  Afghanistan was scary’, he recalls. ‘When you leave  Camp Bastion you realise that its real. Its you and your friends now. I kept my Bible with me in my  pocket all the time and it calmed me down. I thought  that God would be looking down over me. I had a  sense of Him being with me’. ‘I would pull it out and read it when we went on  patrol and I had a tingling feeling go through my  body every time. Anything could happen. Nobody had  a clue what would happen. But when I picked up my Bible, I felt that nothingwould happen to us. We got  into reghts, but we always got out of them. All five  generations of Pte Welsbys family have served in the  Infantry, so it is perhaps surprising that both the  Bible and men survived. ‘It means a lot to me, he  says, All of my family has read it. I wish I could  know what they read. But me and my granddad were  very close and we both liked exactly the same things. I reckon he had a hand in saying, Stop at that page. I  reckon somehow he guided me to reading Revelation”* We know a lot about the past  ours and the history  of our race. We know quite a lot about the present.  But the fact is we know nothing about what might or will happen to us even five minutes ahead. In a few  seconds our life can be turned upside down. We are  introduced to a stranger who eventually becomes our life partner. The doctor tells us we are pregnant – or seriously ill. We get the sack or are offered a  wonderful new job. Anything from a road trafc  accident to a nancial windfall to a leak in the kitchen ceiling can change everything in an instant. So, it’s not surprising that we are puzzled by the future. The past can be cherished – memories are precious. The present is to be lived to the best of our ability. Butwhat can we do about the future? Our best laid plans are provisional, at best. No wonder soothsayers, fortune tellers and the rest have always done well. For people who believe in God there is, however, a bit of help in his Name. In Hebrew it is ‘Yahweh’ (often wrongly transcribed as ‘Jehovah). It means, more or less, I AM. God simply exists, a kind of permanent present tense. So, while we see past, present and future, He is just the Existing One. Yes, I know that sounds baffling, but it makes sense that the Creator of everything cant be part of the time, space and matter that He created. Your Friend and Vicar Canon Phillip p.s. look at the logo for the Invictus Games! *taken from ‘Hear my Cry (Words for when there are no words) Published by Bible Society. 2014 ISBN: 978 0 - 564  04923  3 P. 110  111.
PARISH OF KILLAY
The Church in Wales in the Diocese of Swansea & Brecon
St Hilary & St Martin
  PLWYF CILÂ
Copyright Parish of Killay 2018