Magazine February 2017

Bingo night with Fish and Chips

Parish Magazine ~ February 2017

The Rev'd Dr Gordon Giles

For the first time in quite a while, Lent does not start in February. So we have a ‘green’ month – liturgical green at least, and a good period of time to draw breath between the Christmas season and the coming penitential season. ‘Lent’ actually means ‘Spring’, and this coming year it really will be high Spring by the time we enter Holy Week and Easter.

So, with a whole month (well a short month of course as February is!) before us, what to do with it? Well, if your New Year resolutions have gone the way of all flesh by now, and you are yet to consider what to give up, or do about Lent, maybe February should be a green month in another sense of the word! As Donald Trump takes office on the other side of the Atlantic, giving concern to all sorts of ethnic, political and social groups worldwide, we might also recall that his professed attitude to global warming, conservation and fossil fuel use is not exactly ‘conservative’!

Closer to home, what are we doing about doing our bit? Kermit the frog famously sang ‘it’s not easy being green’, but maybe it’s not that hard either!

In Church, of course, we have moved over to LED light bulbs. Perhaps you have done the same. Perhaps you are thinking about how much of your weekly shop you throw away; or about reusing those plastic bags; or getting one of those energy meters that show you the internal outworkings of your energy bills. There’s lots of little things we can do, and do do. Notice that this month this Magazine does not have in it some of the information we print every single month unchanged. Keep the insert for use each month!

Two questions often get asked: 1) what difference does my little bit make – what’s the point when big companies are ruining the planet without our help? 2) Why should we care about the planet anyway? The second question should hardly need asking when we remember that we are God’s creatures placed on earth to ‘rule’ and care for it. It is part of the human purpose to care for the environment, so wilful involvement in its destruction is a sin. This answer to the second question makes the first question redundant doesn’t it? Because we are not just ‘doing our bit’, but rather are simply doing what we are called to do.

Through media manipulation and global agenda-setting as well as an individualistic, ‘me first’, ‘pick and choose your ideology’ climate, the basics of these questions (and answers) are often clouded in the self-serving smog generated by large corporations who spend fortunes on telling us what to believe rather than in helping to us to truly think about what might be true. We are moving into an age that some big thinkers are now calling ‘post-truth’. The strands of reality that connect what we read in the papers, or even see around us, to what matters, to what is good and, yes, true are being severed, deliberately and systematically. This means that not only is there a lot of nonsense being talked about in relation to faith, religion and politics, but there is also a lot of misinformation, exaggeration and manipulation going on when it comes to science, medicine and economics. The patina of respectability of all three of these latter disciplines is being eroded in the causes of entertainment, sentimentality and opinion. The last bastions of rigorous thinking, clarity and honesty have enemies at their gates, and their weapon of choice is the new, slimy five pound note.

Top scientists say that their work is pilloried and misrepresented by the mass media, who do not listen carefully enough to understand what needs to be communicated. Science is so widely misunderstood and caricatured. Schools are surreptitiously teaching that religion and science are diametrically opposed and you can’t ‘believe in’ both: you must choose between them, and, of course ‘science’ is the one to put your trust in. This appals as many scientists as it does sensible Christians. Meanwhile the healthcare of our population has become a political and financial football to be kicked about in parliament and the press, and the blame game goes on and on. More people read the Daily Mail than do the New Scientist, more read The Sun than The Economist, more read The Guardian than the Church Times. Yet, if you do not want to be told what to think and believe and do, you should avoid the former of these pairings, and if you want to understand what is really going on, then have a look at the latter. Most people don’t of course, and that is their choice. Choice, is after all, what drives everything these days, so it is no surprise it drives our minds too.

You may think this is all philosophical claptrap from someone who studied it too much. That might be true (but how would we know?!). But on the other hand, the most powerful country in the world has just popped into power a man who embodies, and says this kind of thing I’m beginning to get a bit worried about. So it can’t all be wrong, can it?


From the Parish Registers

If anyone is celebrating a birthday or anniversary and wishes to take up the elements please inform the churchwardens.

Regular Weekly Events

Sunday8:00 amHoly Communion
10:00 amEucharist (Second Sunday in month Family Service)
6:30 pmEvensong (or other ‘special’ service)
Please see the Google calendar for any further information regarding Sunday Services
Monday10:00 amMattins (BCP)
Tuesday7:45-9:00 pmBell Ringing Practice
Wednesday8:30 pmDrama Group
Thursday10:30 amHoly Communion (BCP)
7:30 pmChoir Practice

Lunchtime Recitals

Nathalie Beswick played the piano at the January concert. She was new to us, but very professional. Nathalie presented an attractive programme of 19th and early 20th century music. At 12:30 pm on Wednesday 8 February our own Vicar, Gordon, will play the flute with our friend Roddy Elmer at the piano. They have played together for a few years now and always present an interesting and enjoyable programme. Do come along if you are able and perhaps enjoy a ploughman’s lunch afterward.

Eleanor Pritchard

12:30 pm - 1:00 pm
Retiring Collection
Ploughman’s Lunch £3.50, if required, in the Choir Vestry afterwards

Concert Programme For 2017

8th February Gordon Giles & Roddy Elmer ~ Flute & Piano

8th March Enfield Grammar School ~ Jazz Group

12th April Sandra Sinclair ~ Viola

10th May The Anern String Trio

14th June Margaret Green and Roddy Elmer ~ voice and piano

12th July Catherine Leonard ~ piano

August No Concert

13th September Susannah Knight, Michael Lovejoy and Roddy Elmer
(oboe, violin and piano)

11th October Serafini Trio

8th November Olive Murray ~ voice

13th December Michael and Marion Smith ~ Organ & Piano

Date For Your Diary

Our next organ fund raising Coffee Morning will be held on Tuesday 21 February and will be hosted by Gill and David Bird - do please come and support them as this is the first time they will have held such a morning and are really looking forward to seeing lots of you there. Although this year’s rota is complete (see listing) I am always on the lookout for new venues!! Thanks as always for all the support you give to these events.

Rita Barker


A group have been meeting at my home every two or three weeks to enjoy coffee or tea and then play recorders. We meet on Mondays from 11 am to 12 noon and it is a friendly and relaxed group. Perhaps you played the recorder at school or have never played before but fancy trying now, if so have a word with me.

Eleanor Pritchard

News From the Home Group

Now where were we? Ah yes “Find Your Voice” at Saint Mellitus College... President of the college and Bishop of Kensington, The Right Rev’d Dr Graham Tomlin delivered the third instalment “The Problem Of Evil”. In this thought provoking session we regarded the question “Why does God allow suffering in his world?” And were encouraged to consider how we might respond should it arise in conversation.

This perceptive enquiry raised four options for evaluation; Free Will? The greater good? Determinism? and The Kingdom of Darkness?

After debating the strengths and weaknesses of each we were led on to “The Parable of the Sower” in Matthew 13:24-30. From which we were given these “Markers for a Christian understanding of evil”: Creation is originally good. Evil comes from an enemy. Evil and goodness are intertwined. Nonetheless they are different. They will one day be separated and evil will be no more.

During the course of this weighty topic I particularly liked the quote from David Bentley Hart:

For, after all, if it is from Christ that we are to learn how God relates himself to sin, suffering, evil and death, it would seem that he provides us little evidence of anything other than a regal, relentless and miraculous enmity; sin he forgives, suffering he heals, evil he casts out and death he conquers. And absolutely nowhere does Christ act as if any of these things are part of the eternal work or purposes of God.”

I also enjoyed the evenings conclusion to this topic: “The church is a place for”; Lament. Resistance. Transformation. Solidarity and Hope.

To be included in our forthcoming line up:

First Monday of the month: Listening Prayer.
Second: BBC’s “Jesus: The Complete Story”; a series of three one hour episodes “Recreating ancient Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Nazareth with computer generated imagery, the film makers seek to discover how Christ lived and died.” Originally aired on the Discovery Channel in 2001, narrated by Tom Hodgkins.
Third: Graham Tomlin’s book “The Provocative Church”, studying one of its ten chapters.
Fourth: Film Night; February 27th “It’s A Wonderful Life”.

Where the months of May, July and October have Five Mondays, activities, socials, outings and further inclusions will be announced.

The following poem “Now the Work of Christmas Begins” composed by Howard Thurman (1899-1981), an African-American theologian, educator, and civil rights leader, seems appropriate especially at Candlemas...

When the song of the angels is stilled,
when the star in the sky is gone,
when the kings and princes are home,
when the shepherds are back with their flocks,
the work of Christmas begins:
to find the lost,
to heal the broken,
to feed the hungry,
to release the prisoner,
to rebuild the nations,
to bring peace among the people,
to make music in the heart.

Please find an inspiring video of this poem at:

God bless. Love

Laura, Ken and Dawn Cope.

Coffee Dates for your diary - 2017

Here is the rota for the monthly coffee mornings all Tuesdays except 20th November which is a Monday

February 21 ~ Gill & David Bird

March 21 ~ Eleanor Pritchard

April 18 ~ Alison Reeve

May 16 ~ June Carr

June 20 ~ Carol & Peter Lamb

July 18 ~ Maureen & Keith Rew

August 15 ~ Laura & Ken Cope

September 19 ~ Gordon & Jessica Giles

October 17 ~ Betty Buck

November 20* ~ Janet & Keith Whelpdale

December 19 ~ Rita Barker

* Please note this is a Monday

Magazine Stapling Rota 2017

5 March 2017
Ken and Laura Cope, Gill Bird

2 April 2017
Peter and Carol Lamb, Eleanor Pritchard

30 April 2017
Ken and Laura Cope, Gill Bird

4 June 2017
Vic Harrington, Pam Hagan, Helen Clarke

29 July 2017
Ju(Yezi) Lan Zhen, Fal Hayes

26 August 2017
Ken & Laura Cope, Gill Bird

23 September 2017
Peter & Carol Lamb, Eleanor Pritchard

21 October 2017
Vic Harrington, Pam Hagan, Helen Clarke

If you know of any lady or gentleman who would be able to help with stapling or if you are unable to keep the above dates please contact either Michael or Janet Dixon or Janet Whelpdale.

January Coffee Morning

Many thanks to all who came and generously supported the first coffee morning of the New Year at our house. The sun shone, the coffee and chat flowed, and quantities of cake were consumed. We raised £184 which, after tax rebate, will be £218 towards the Organ Restoration Fund. Again, thanks to all. For those who requested one of the cake recipes at our coffee morning, here it is:

Moist Pineapple Cake

4-ozs margarine
12-ozs mixed dried fruit (or just sultanas)
8-ozs soft light brown sugar
1 level teaspoon mixed spice
1 level teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 x 15-oz tin crushed pineapple (approx.425 g)
(or use pineapple chunks or slices and crush in blender)
8-ozs self-raising flour
2 eggs, size 3

Put marg, fruit, sugar, spice and bicarb into large saucepan. Add pineapple. Heat slowly until boiling – stir well. Boil steadily for 3 minutes and then allow to become quite cold. Pre-heat oven to Gas 4: 350F: 180C.

Add flour and beaten eggs. Spoon mixture into lined 8-inch tin and bake for one-and-a-half to one-and-three-quarters hours. Allow cake to cool before turning out.

Kate and Bob Bissett

Fellowship Programme – 2017

February 15th - Richard, our Oak Hill Student

March 15th - An update on the New Build for Noah’s Ark

April 19th - Speaker to be arranged

May 17th - Padwick and Ball (a collection for Cancer Research)

June 21 - Speaker to be arranged

July 19th - Summer Lunch

September 20th - Gordon Giles

October 18th - Jackie Fish with Speaker to be arranged

November 15th - Speaker to be arranged

December 20th - Christmas Lunch

Ash Wednesday 2017