‘Do they play cricket in heaven?’ asked an anxious vicar when given the opportunity to phone through to St Peter at the pearly gates. St Peter replied, ‘Well, the good news is yes, we do play cricket in heaven. The bad news is that you’re down to open the batting next Saturday’.

A poor joke, but I like the suggestion that cricket is a hallowed activity. I’m biased, of course, since I like nothing more than either playing or watching the sport. I’m eagerly looking forward to one of the highlights of the Teddington 800 programme this month – the cricket game between the Bishop’s XI (made up of London clergy) and a local Teddington XI (July 19th, 6pm, Teddington CC in Bushy Park).

It’s not just cricket, however, that is ‘ordained by God’. I think this can be said for all sport. Not only is it healthy for mind and body. It is also done for no other reason than the sheer enjoyment of doing it. This reminds us that we are created as humans to enjoy the world and our place in it, to enjoy our physicality and our interactions with others. Doing something recreational (be it sport, music, art or any other hobby) is an essential reminder that we are not just created to work and be productive. We are created to play, to be, to rest, and to enjoy.

We are hugely blessed in Teddington to have a multiplicity of amazing sporting activities on our doorstep. So it is fitting that our Teddington 800 theme for this month is Sport. I encourage you to come to the Town Sports Day on Sunday July 9th in Bushy Park and join in.

Best wishes

Joe Moffatt