It’s August and hopefully for some a time to rest. School holidays have begun and for us at church we try not to hold any meetings this month! I am taking some leave myself and have some alternative arrangements in place at the beginning of this month as I am not the only one taking some time off. So we have been invited to share a service of traditional Matins or BCP Morning Prayer, with the congregation of St Margaret’s Church Ockley slightly earlier than some are used to at 9.30am. This will be a lovely opportunity to share with our friends there and I know they are looking forward to welcoming everybody. Consequently the published Café Church from the July calendar has been postponed till the beginning of September when I promise it will take place. For those of you who have never been to this type of service, Café Church is a slightly different experience in that we begin in our Café area with coffee provided by Coffee Real along with croissants and other goodies. We have a ‘menu’ for the day instead of an order of service, which gives our guests a small topic to discuss at their tables plus there is always a newspaper or two to browse through and something to occupy the children. Halfway through we have an informal time of reflection and worship. It is always a very special time, it is very informal and perfect for those who have not been to church in a while or ever!
I can also very much recommend the St Margaret’s service of Matins which I led for them recently during their time of vacancy. This was very much a new experience for me as I had not led Matins before. It has become a bit of a rarity in the Church of England these days but as many of you know it deserves some revisiting. So do visit St Margaret’s and enjoy their beautiful church and support them during this time of re-organisation.
So we have lots to look forward to this month in our village don’t we. The Capel Show is nearly here and will be as ever a great occasion. Do come and visit us among the stalls where we will be selling – yes you guessed it – popcorn! All proceeds as ever for the Boundary Wall fund. Our church art group St John’s Artists will be close by this year for the first time selling general cards all by our own artists. Those of you who enjoyed our Christmas cards last year will be pleased I hope to see some more of our endeavours.
We also have three baptisms this month where we will be able to welcome more families and their friends through our doors. These are always very happy occasions. Sadly during July we said farewell to some older friends in the community too, as we hosted three services of thanksgiving for the lives of Michael Wadey, Duncan Jennings and Bill Parkhurst respectively. Despite the sadness of saying goodbye, for all of these special men we heard the most wonderful tributes and readings, sung our hearts out and celebrated their distinguished lives and the love and support they in their lifetime gave to others was inspirational. The church was full with their family and friends on each occasion.
And of course we also had two beautiful weddings to celebrate as well for Sami and Ian one week, followed by William and Jade the next. Our church was continually filled to the brim with flowers in July and all in all it was quite a month and all in God’s precious name, a God who is there with us in our joys and our sorrows, at work and at play and also when we are at rest too!
With my love and prayers