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Sunday, 24 June 2018
Father Roger was still int he driving seat today as we celebrated the birth of St John the Baptist.  Father Roger told us that until recently, his day was celebrated in the week, not on Sunday, but we now recognise the importance of John the Baptist. His birthday is also Midsummer day, one of the legal quarter days, the others being Michaelmas, Christmas and Lady Day.  Jesus' birth is celebrated because he grew up to be a special person, also so did John. Zachariah his father was a descendant of Aaron and so he was a born to be a priest. He worked int he temple.  He and his wife Elizabeth were elderly and childless.  Israel had been occupied for centuries, waiting for the Messiah.  They had not even had a good prophet for centuries. Zachariah was then allowed to burn incense in the temple, a once in a lifetime occurrence and whilst he was fulfilling this, Gabriel comes to him and tells him that he will have a son, a prophet who will precede the Messiah. He is struck dumb by the news.  When the pregnant Elizabeth meets the pregnant Mary, the unborn John greets the unborn Jesus. Prophets had called Jews to the right path, they had a sense of calling and duty, although this was not a job wanted or sort for.  Elijah had to appear again to herald the coming of the Messiah.  John spoke out against Herod and the excesses of him and his family and got beheaded for it. John, because of his heritage, could have had a comfortable life working in the temple, but instead he listened to God and lived in the desert, an uncomfortable and tough life.  But John was more than a prophet.  He brought baptism to the Jews, not a christian baptism, but he rallied people to behave themselves, repent before judgement and prepare for the new times coming.  John's baptism was a new thing for the Jews. In ritual bathing, you immersed yourself, but John immersed other people. Anything we do for God is not forced, it is our choice. God's spirit works in his church, but it not confined to Christian people, for anyone of any faith or no faith can try to take humanity forward in love.

The Sunday school have also been busy. Below is their work on Pentecost.

Today they were learning about the fishing boats being buffeted on the sea of Galilee and made their own boats which they sailed in a tank of water.

Friday, 22 June 2018
Father Stephen is still away so Father Roger took the service today.  His sermon reflected that the readings today were congenial to those who grow things.  There are many horticultural images in the bible, sowing, pruning, grafting and harvesting. Seeds can be incredibly small like specks of dust, so gathering them can be tricky as can sowing them, so one is very happy if they grow. When Jesus chose his 12 apostles, they seemed a rather unlikely bunch, but were very successful.  They worked hard, antisocial hours as most were fishermen and these were good attributes for the apostles.

Matthew was a tax collector, Thomas questioned things, Judas was a Jewish nationalist who wanted to expel the Romans.  So the apostles were a mixed bunch much like our cabinet 2000 years later. We must let God further his kingdom through us, unlikely as it may seem. Parents can only sow seeds of Jesus in their children and try and nurture them, but other people will also help move things onward. Outcomes are not always in our hands. 

Certainty can mean a lack of faith.  If we know for certain, then there is no room for faith. We sow for God as best we can.

Stall holders are welcoming things for their stalls for the forthcoming Summer Fete.  Details in the magazine and church porch.

We are also looking for donations towards the silhouettes to commemorate the end of the First World War.  Details also in the church porch.
Monday, 11 June 2018
This morning our Eucharist was celebrated by Father Roger, as Father Stephen is away. We had a lovely summer morning, with sunshine and the church yard looking beautiful as we came into Church.
The Choir sang 'Lord for they Tender Mercy's Sake' setting by Farrant ed. Greening as the anthem.
There was coffee after the service.
The Fete is fast approaching, Stall holders are ready to recieve your donations, Jars, bottles, clothes for the boutique, all welcome! This year the Fete is on the 28th of July, and we hope to see you all there!!

Sunday, 3 June 2018
This is our Rogation walk Sunday.  We tour the locale around the church and ask God's blessing for the fruits of the earth.  As Father Stephen pointed out, Rogation is from the Latin, Rogare meaning to ask or ask for. God was kind to us and we had a beautiful morning to wander around and Joanna treated us to the piano instead of the organ.

Service Times

First Sunday in the Month:
08:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Family Service

Second Sunday in the Month
08:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Parish Eucharist

Third Sunday in the Month
08:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Sung Matins

Fourth Sunday in the Month
08:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Parish Eucharist

Variations can be found in the Parish Magazine or the Calendar at the bottom of this page.

Useful links

Here are some links to resources you may find helpful:

  1. St Mary's Facebook page
  2. Chichester Cathedral will be live streaming services. For the Eucharist and order of service Click here before 10:00am Sunday and follow the instructions.
  3. The BBC Daily Service is available here.
  4. Prayer for today.
  5. The C of E youtube channel.
  6. Hearing You is a new phone help line launched by the Diocese of Chichester in partnership with Together in Sussex in response to the impact that Covid 19 has had on Just about the whole community. It aims to provide pastoral support and a listening ear to the recently bereaved and people directly affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
  7. COVID-19 advice from the Diocese of Chichester here.

Please note that St Mary's are not responsible for the contents of external links

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