Newsletter 21stJune

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Sunday 21st June

We’re going to open on Monday!

We’re delighted to announce that starting from this coming Monday, 22nd June, the Church will be open for private prayer from 4pm to 6pm every day. The PCC have met and agreed a way that this can be achieved properly, meeting all the guidelines set by the government and the Church of England.

There’ll be at least two people on duty at all times to welcome and assist people, and if you’d like to join the rota for that, just click here to reply to this email and we’ll take it from there.

We’ve chosen those times as the contractors renovating the Church organ or the toilet will have finished for the day by then; and we’ll review everything after a couple of weeks. We hope to welcome many people – the faithful, the grateful and the curious – and also hope you will encourage lots of people to visit us. It will be a joy to see you soon!

 

Sunday worship

Meanwhile, our Sunday services will continue on Zoom until the Government allows Churches to open for worship. Many have found it helpful to be taking part in a relaxed setting, and that seeing everyone’s faces makes it much more of a shared worship experience. It’s good that we can even sing as well as pray, hear God’s word and listen to a talk. Join us this Sunday; we’ll be ‘open’ in good time for the service to start at 10:15am. The numbers are the same – 250-589-2419, password 2820.

 

Sunday is also Father’s Day

So what better day could there be to worship our Heavenly Father, the loving God who loves no-one more than you. Nothing pleases him more than to know that you love Him and want to spend time with Him. And if there’s a father in your life – honour him too. Give him one day off from the cooking, washing and ironing!

No afternoon Tea this week

As the Church will be open from 4pm to 6pm on Wednesday, there won’t be Afternoon Tea on Zoom. But you might instead decide to pop up to Church and spend some quality time in the real presence of God. And here’s another opportunity for fellowship, on Thursday afternoons and evenings……..

 

‘Open the Bible’ on Thursdays

Do you have an hour to spare during the week, and would you like to spend time online, studying the Bible? Have you ever wondered why there are four Gospels – wouldn’t one be enough? The Sermon on the Mount… what was Jesus really getting at? What was it like for Christians in the years after Jesus’ ascension? Or what is the big question in your head right now?

John us on Zoom this Thursday at 2:30m and/or 7:30pm (we’ll be there both times) for an informal get-together to chat through what’s important about the world’s most important book. Be boosted by the power of the Bible!

 

Young At Heart

Our Young at Heart Club, for everyone over 50, is looking for people to take over the running of the club. Jenny and Diana, the current leaders, have decided not to continue (claiming they’re not getting any younger!). Contact either Diana 01206 756119 or Jenny 07741 411367 to know more about the Club. Obviously, it would be difficult to carry on if there are no leaders!

 

Faith at Home

Faith at Home is a Church of England website, with lots of resources for parents, families and leaders to help children and young people express their faith when there’s no Church or youth group to attend! Give it a try here!

 

 

Hayward’s Hope

Sarah, Tim & family’s videos, posted online every Sunday at 9:30am, continue to be an inspiration. Brighten your day – any day – as you listen to their encouraging words. The focus of their mission for Jesus is the new development to the north of Myland – Severalls and Chesterwell – but the whole Church’s heart for mission will be encouraged by their words and actions. Visit their YouTube channel here.

 

And finally…. A reflection, by Rt Revd Peter Hill, Acting Bishop of Chelmsford

Gospel waves of compassion

All of us have thrown a large stone into a pond and watched as the initial splash pushes concentric waves out evenly in all directions. The bigger the stone, or number of stones, the bigger the disturbance on and below the surface, as blockages are removed, and stagnation is remedied.

In the last months, the fearful waves of COVID-19 have engulfed and disturbed the nation and planet. More recently the horrendous murder of George Floyd has rightly raised waves of passion and anger and enhanced the Black Lives Matter movement. Though it has been hidden below the surface recently, we will soon enough part company with the European Community, for better or worse, with further ensuing political & economic waves.

These disturbing waves of fear, righteous anger and economic uncertainty will remain for some long while yet. I don’t think we can underestimate the potential poverty, mental health and general social distress that will yet arise as we emerge into a new society, which will be marked out by economic hardship, significant unemployment and other yet unknown debris.

So, what is our response? We must hang in there with the compassion of Jesus. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. (Matthew 9:36). Our Lord’s response was shaped by total compassion and he sent his first disciples out with that same intent. Though for different reasons, the Palestine of Jesus’ day was equally distressed. In fact our translation does not do justice to the original meaning. Harassed and helpless translates more fully as plundered, mangled and prostrate -flat out!

It was with that deep compassion that Jesus sent his disciples out to heal communities and he sent them locally to the lost sheep of the House of Israel (Matthew 10:5ff). We too are called to have Christ-like compassion for a harassed and helpless world close at hand in our communities. From many churches up and down the country we have seen numerous Gospel waves of compassion recently, but more still will be needed. There are hundreds who need Christ and the care of Christian compassion in your area in these emergent weeks to come. Each one of us and each member of our congregations can make a difference to someone or some situation close by.

It is your calling and mine to teach and lead in a new wave of compassionate response. Such a compassion should come too from our bowels, our spiritual guts, and by the Spirit of God! It is a wave effect that serves the community and gathers others with it as it spreads out from the people of God. As we begin to open our doors physically, just a little, in the coming days, let us remember that Church is not Church unless it is going out into the world.

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Yours in His name,

Ray, Hazel, Sarah, John, Lesley, Jill, Sarah