It is a year ago today that All Along the Watchtower was launched, and I want to thank those of you who have been here from the start, and all those of you who are regular readers.
It began as an outlet for some thoughts of mine on my faith at a time of trial, and those who were here at the start, as well as the ‘regulars’ have some idea what that was. I don’t want this to be another Oscar list of all those to whom I am grateful – that can be seen in the blogroll and the list of contributors. But all those from the ‘gallant click’ (you know who you are) have a place in my heart, because you helped give me the courage to do this (no, I’m not blaming you for this 🙂 )
As I had no idea what I was doing or how long I would do it (still don’t), I would have been surprised if I’d been told that in a year there would be over 760 posts with more than 62,000 views and in excess of 15,000 comments. It was Neo coined the description of me as the ‘Chatelaine’, and of late that is a very accurate one, as I have been here more in the breach than the observance; but I am very happy to be that for the little community gathered here. One of my earliest (and kindest) followers has found himself unable to be here because this looks like an ecumenical group; I respect him for a decision which saddens me, because it seems to me that is no bad thing.
We go here all the way from very Traditionalist Catholics, through to Anglicans and out to the far edges of Evangelical Protestantism. We lack an Orthodox voice (although Chalcedon is a convert from Orthodoxy), but, as Struans was kind enough to say on Sunday: ‘This blog is a marvellous community – almost a local church in it’s own right.’
That, if it needed one, is its justification.
I have been blessed with this community and by its presence, and want to thank each and every one of you. I am honoured that 200 of you want to follow what goes on here.
Across this year my life has changed beyond all recognition, but what has remained constant and grown are the good things, and the bad ones have been burned away, not without some pain, but decisively. Amongst the good things is this place and your companionship. So thank you, all of you.
My faith is at the centre of my life, but as an individual in one church, it is easy enough to become set in one’s ways and for one’s thinking to fossilise. This blog was an attempt to think about my faith in a way which allowed me to interact with other Christians and to share their perspectives as much as it was to allow me to share mine. I am painfully aware that compared to some of you, I am both under-educated and under-prepared for such discussions, but I feel less so on both counts thanks to your posts and comments.