Pastoral Letter - 20th November 2020
Dear Friends, HELP! One of the children recently reminded me how little time there now is between now and Christmas! Also, some of my Instagram contacts have already posted pictures of their recently beautifully decorated Christmas trees! Perhaps this is because we all need a little light shining into the darkness of our lives at the moment, a little tinsel to disguise the trauma, a little hope to counteract the horrors of how Covid 19 is disfiguring the world, affecting our health, our home life, our job security, our economic wellbeing, our social interaction and our church going. Jerry Herman, in his celebrated Broadway musical "Mame", has the lead character, who has fallen on bad times and who decides that she needs to celebrate Christmas early, sing: "For we need a little Christmas/Right this very moment/It hasn’t snowed a single flurry/But Santa dear, we’re in a hurry." In all that has been happening since Christmas 2019, so many of us have wanted the presence of Jesus Christ to warm the cold, harsh landscape and climate we are inhabiting, His peace to flow into areas of pain and His compassion to be felt in experiences of confusion. The child I had been speaking to had just been preparing her letter to Father Christmas, telling him all that she required for her Christmas holiday and new year to be as enjoyable as she wished it to be. For others of us, I wonder if we should, instead of listing material things which would make life more enjoyable for us, write to the one who was and is to come into the world as Saviour and ask, for the sake of others we care about and the world of which we are part, as well as for our own sake, for those other things which we need, that life would become happier, healthier, less exploitative, more secure, more equal, more compassionate and safer for us all. As we prepare for Stir Up Sunday this coming weekend and celebrate Christ the King, may I ask you to give some thought to two or three things which you would ask of Christ this Christmas: for yourself, for those you care about and for the world. Please then write to me with those thoughts by Monday 7th December, so that I can use your ideas to compile a Christmas Prayer to the Infant Christ, which we can use together over Christmas. I look forward to hearing from you. With blessings and best wishes from your priest and friend. Jeff ***
Please join us this coming Sunday for our Zoom Service at 9.30am as we celebrate CHRIST THE KING.
The Gospel is Matthew Chapter 25 verses 31-46. Our Collect:
Eternal Father, Whose Son Jesus Christ ascended to the Throne of Heaven, That He might rule over all as Lord and King: Keep the Church in the unity of the Spirit And in the bond of peace And bring the whole created order To worship at His feet. For He lives and reigns with you And the Holy Spirit One God, now and for ever.
AMEN. Prayer for Stir Up Sunday:
Stir up, O Lord, The wills of your faithful people That they, plenteously bringing forth The fruit of good works May by you be plenteously rewarded. This we ask through Jesus Christ Our Lord Who lives and reigns with you And the Holy Spirit One God, now and for ever.