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12 December 2021
This morning we reach the third Sunday in Advent called Gaudate Sunday, Gaudate is the Latin for rejoice, and this third Sunday in Advent the solomn mood lightens a little, the candle colour for this Sunday is pink, and today we look ahead to the coming of the Christ Child, and his herald, John the Baptist.

This morning we had extra cause for rejoicing because we were joined by Bishop Martin, who celebrated the Eucharist with us, Father Roger was also with us and read the Gospel. Bishop Martin welcomed us all to 'Rosy' Sunday, and spoke in his homily about this lifting of mood as we look towards Christmas, and how we need to look at our Christian responsibilities, in our personal lives, our community and national lives and our relationship to the whole world, to prepare for the second coming of the Prince of Peace. 

The Choir sang 'This is the Record of John,' by Orlando Gibbons (1583-1621) based on the text of St John's Gospel in the Geneva Bible. Dr Hilary Platts sang the solo accompanied by our Musical Director, Mrs Joanna Chivers with the chorus sung by the rest of the choir.

The Sunday School young people joined us for communion, and after the service they held their Christmas Sale in aid of their chosen charities in the rooms. 

Bishop Martin joined us for a coffee at the sale before wishing us all a Happy Christmas as he left. 

At the end of our service Bishop Martin told us that the Diocese was actively looking for the right person to be our Priest, and that we were very much in the mind and prayers of himself and the Arch Deacon. He also told the children of his visit to the home of Saint Nicholas the origin of Santa Claus, in southern Italy, and that presents are important to receive but also to give, that we give Jesus our love and hearts as a present on his birthday.  

Next Sunday, the 10 am service will be Matins, and at 6pm we will have our service of 9 lessons and carols.

 Philippians 4:4-7

A reading from the letter of Paul to the Philippians.

Rejoice in the Lord always; 
again I will say, Rejoice.

Let your gentleness be known to everyone. 
The Lord is near. 

Do not worry about anything, 
but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving 
let your requests be made known to God. 

And the peace of God, 
which surpasses all understanding, 
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Luke 3:7-18

Hear the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.

John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, 
“You brood of vipers! 
Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 

Bear fruits worthy of repentance. 
Do not begin to say to yourselves, 
‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’; 
for I tell you, 
God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. 

Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; 
every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down 
and thrown into the fire.”

And the crowds asked him, 
“What then should we do?” 

In reply he said to them, 
“Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; 
and whoever has food must do likewise.” 

Even tax collectors came to be baptized, 
and they asked him, 
“Teacher, what should we do?” 

He said to them, 
“Collect no more than the amount prescribed for you.” 

Soldiers also asked him, 
“And we, what should we do?” 
He said to them, 
“Do not extort money from anyone by threats or false accusation, 
and be satisfied with your wages.”

As the people were filled with expectation, 
and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, 
whether he might be the Messiah,

John answered all of them by saying, 
“I baptize you with water; 
but one who is more powerful than I is coming; 
I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. 
He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 

His winnowing fork is in his hand, 
to clear his threshing floor
and to gather the wheat into his granary; 
but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”

So, with many other exhortations, 
he proclaimed the good news to the people.

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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