Parish Magazine ~ September 2018
30, The Ridgeway
It’s five years now since Archbishop Justin Welby declared what the press decided to call the ‘war on Wonga’. You probably remember – Wonga were in the habit of advertising short-term unsecured loans with their 2 little old people saying in their cartoony way that this was the solution to all their problems. Ironic that they were shortsighted, and if you had been to the opticians recently and peered closely at the small print at the bottom of the TV screen for the right fraction of a second you would have spotted that the interest was a mere 5900 per cent. I say ‘mere’, because it is still the case that an unauthorised bank overdraft from a High Street bank can cost even more. Which is not to say Wonga was cheap – far from it – but more importantly, it was enabling folk to get short-term loans which they had little chance of repaying. Wonga – and others like them were raking it in – a barely legal version of loan-sharking.
Archbishop Justin called them on it, and has subsequently written a book called Dethroning Mammon: Making Money Serve Grace. In it he makes three claims or pleas:
- Firstly that the UK outside Europe must not be built to a design drawn up by Mammon – that is to say – materialism is not the solution to the challenges we face.
- Secondly, Mammon (the personification of the rule of society by financial power) – Mammon needs to be dethroned, because Mammon is a deceiver.
- And Thirdly, how we structure society in the future must be shaped by something other than Mammon.
A society that lives by money will die by it, to coin a phrase. Or as Archbishop Justin puts it: “The regeneration of our position in Europe, or elsewhere must be one that starts with the authority of Christ, not mere calculation of dubious material advantage.”
And we know he is basically right – we know that living your life simply in search of more dosh is pretty soul-destroying. For Mammon is a soul-destroyer – a drainer of life. Wonga have experienced downturns in profits every one of the last five years, and more folk are more aware of the thin ice that so many of us skate on. Half the population have less than £100 in savings and a third cannot cope if an unexpected £300 bill comes in. If this is incomprehensible to you, consider yourself lucky. Universal Credit is being rolled out, and whatever the politics of it are, it is going to cause all sorts of confusion and transitional difficulty as people’s financial circumstances change. No-one will be better off – and why should they be – but most people’s financial circumstances will change, and adapting will be awkward and painful, and an unfortunate consequence for some will be the necessity to go into debt. Others go into debt anyway – the new phenomenon of funeral poverty is rearing its head – a funeral is not an optional luxury – and of course comes at the worst possible time – that is when someone dies. With the average price of a funeral just over £4000 now – and note that in London it is double what it is elsewhere, which affects the average – given that half the population don’t have £100 to hand, so many people are turning to lenders to pay for a loved one’s funeral.
In Enfield, the average cost of a funeral is £6141. This, you are probably not amused to know, makes our Borough the second most expensive place to die in the country. It is a fantasy to simply assume that the estate pays for the funeral – that is only true if there is an estate. Thousands of people die every year bequeathing only debt. And of course, if there really is no-one to pick up the tab the Council will provide a no-frills low cost public health funeral, which means of course that as ratepayers we are paying.
Money – the food of Mammon – is not Manna. It doesn’t fall from the sky. And there simply isn’t enough of it, and what there is is not spread evenly or accessibly on the ground. The Wonga business reminds us that it is absolutely true that the poorer you are, the more expensive it is to borrow. Only rich people can access low interest rates. The former finance minister of Greece, Yanis Varoufakis has written on this and points out the blindingly obvious fact that when hard times come, heavy-handed institutional and self-protective responses crush the poor.
Jesus had a heart for the poor – may we do so too.
From the Parish Registers
12 August 2018
Jason Kemika Mbakwe and Aminah Safiya le Fleurier
If anyone is celebrating a birthday or anniversary and wishes to take up the elements please inform the churchwardens.
For a PDF file of the Parish Magazine for this month please click here.
Regular Weekly Events
|Sunday||8:00 am||Holy Communion|
|10:00 am||Eucharist (Second Sunday in month Family Service)|
|6:30 pm||Evensong (or other ‘special’ service)|
|Please see the Google calendar for any further information regarding Sunday Services|
|Monday||10:00 am||Mattins (BCP)|
|6:00 pm||Home group|
|Tuesday||7:45-9:00 pm||Bell Ringing Practice|
|Wednesday||8:30 pm||Drama Group|
|Thursday||10:30 am||Holy Communion (BCP)|
|7:30 pm||Choir Practice|
I can’t see over the top of the hill but I know what to find there.
That clearing in the forest.
Will be a cleaning of our minds.
Restful Launde Abbey
Bringing peace and tranquility
I will sit in its meadows.
The sheep will call quietly,
the swallows swoop perfectly,
busy insects hover silently.
Where yellow and brown stones
of history, give timeless welcome.
I ‘ll walk in the garden of crosses
and in the Labyrinth of prayer.
Ahead, I see friends. Nearly there.
Jayne Buckland 7th Aug. ‘18
The Parish Concert is at
5 o’clock on
Saturday 22 September
not a week later as previously advertised. Do please offer your services for just five minutes and support this event. Tea will be available afterwards.Eleanor Pritchard
Coffee Morning dates
18th September ~ Bernard Quinn
29th October ~ Gordon Giles Please note this is a Monday and not on the usual week.
20th November ~ Maureen and Keith Rew
18th December ~ Rita Barker
Coffee mornings commence at 10:45 am.
News from the Home Group
Returning from the garden at the beginning of this hot summer, arms heavily laden with another load of freshly laundered dry washing. I was stopped in my tracks by a loud overhead bang, and a bundle of blue feathers cascading down through the air, hitting the concrete in front of me with a thud! Wings all splayed out, I was saddened to see the juvenile Blue tit laying near my feet, having collided with an upstairs window pane. Putting myself between it and the intense and potentially damaging heat of the sun, I prayed for it’s recovery as I shaded the forlorn creature.
Calling Dawn to firstly pick “Aura” (her Chihuahua) up, before she had the opportunity to become inquisitive, and come outside to assist. We carefully arranged a garden chair into position to take over providing shade, unwilling to move the little bird for concern about it’s injuries. Completing my errand and putting the dry washing down inside, I followed Dawn’s suggestion to search the internet for practical advice on how to further aid our tiny charge. Helpful information regarding a stunned and or concussed Blue tit, from the British Wildlife Helpline suggested “Arnica” dissolved in cooled boiled water, administered with a small artists’ paintbrush to the edge of the beak. “The liquid will help with re-hydration and the medication will help with the shock and bruising from the fall”. Thankfully I do keep such things around.
However, rather than waiting for boiled water to cool I considered spring water, quickly followed by an even better thought of blessed water, I keep a bottle of that too! Though I haven’t had the time for my brushes to see paint or canvas since getting married, redundant apart from being used for cleaning purposes, it was a pleasure to put an unused one to such good use. By this time I was happy to see that the tiny bird had gathered it’s wings, although sitting it was swaying about. As it received the fluid, I was struck by the privilege of being so close to this wild bird, though not the circumstances. It definitely appeared to respond well to the few drops I’d gently administered. Moving further away to continue a watchful vigil, before my eyes I witnessed it progressively steadying and recovering. Until I was caught by surprise when it shortly flew past my head onto the nearby garden fence. After just a minute or two there it took flight again, disappearing into neighbouring trees. Well I thanked and praised God for this pretty little birds rescue, and such rewarding encouragement!
Many thanks to you too for your prayers for my mother-in-law Grace!
Following a telephone conversation with her on Sunday July 1st, Ken was very concerned as he suspected she’d suffered a stroke. As Ken’s unfortunately suffered two himself in the past, we’re acquainted with the symptoms. We prayed for Grace and then asked Gordon, Jackie and Mo for prayer support too, numerous friends agreed to pray as well. The long and the short of it; Grace was taken to hospital by ambulance, initially in A&E at PRUH Orpington, Kent. Then onto a stroke ward the next day. The stroke effected a loss of movement on her left side, she’s left handed, and greatly impaired her speech. Some improvement was quickly visible, and within a few days both the speech therapist and physiotherapist were pleased with how her recovery was progressing. Grace spent the remainder of her time there in a smaller more comfortable ward, with three other ladies, before being returned home on July 27th. As part of her ongoing care the NHS have supplied her with a hospital bed, attendance by a nurse morning and evening, and a daily physiotherapist. Such experienced care and medical attention, that I’m so appreciative and grateful that Grace has been able to receive through our NHS.
Unlike the Blue tit, we’re not expecting Grace to take flight! However her favourable recovery illustrates, I believe, the benefit of covering one’s situations and circumstances in prayer. Like covering the little bird with shade, prayer changes the outcome. Well I thank and praise God for my mother-in-law’s rescue, and such rewarding encouragement!
Film Night on 24th: “The Prince Of Egypt” (postponed from July 30th, details in July’s Parish Mag…).
God bless. Love
Laura, Ken and Dawn Cope
North Enfield Food Bank
Week by week we make regular donations to the North Enfield Food Bank and obviously their needs and requirement change with the passage of time. Below please find details of their latest requirements:
Urgently needed items:Tinned tomatoes, tinned meat, tinned fruit, tinned vegetables, tinned meat soup, tinned spaghetti / spaghetti hoops, instant mash, instant noodles / noodles, savoury snacks – crisps / popcorn / crackers, chocolate / snack bars, biscuits, tinned puddings, rice pudding, custard, shampoo/conditioner, shower gel, toilet roll, washing powder.
We’ve got plenty of:
Beans, pasta, cereal, beans/pulses (kidney, black-eyed peas and lentils) tea and sugar.
Fellowship News and Programme for 2018
September 19th Church Warden, Catherine, will talk to us about her Mental Health Nursing career.
October 17th Songs of Praise but with a twist.
November 21st Dot Anderson will give us a demonstration of a flower arrangement.
December 19th We will be celebrating with our usual Christmas Lunch at at the Enfield Golf Club, 12.30pm for 1pm.
A short reminder that the Bush Hill Park Recorder Ensemble will play at the lunch time concert at 12.30 pm on Wednesday 12 September. The St Mary Magdalene Recorder Group will also play. Do come along for some live music.
12:30 pm - 1:00 pm
Ploughman’s Lunch £3.50, if required, in the Choir Vestry afterwards
Do come along if you are free. Ploughman’s lunch with hot soup will be available afterwards at the very reasonable price of £3.50.
Concert Programme For 2018
12th September Bush Hill Recorder Consort
10th October Serafini Trio
14th November Michael and Marion Smith ~ organ and piano
12th December Carols from The Cambridge Carol Book
MagazineItems for the October 2018 edition to the editor by Sunday 16 September, please. Documents should be in Microsoft Word or plain text. Please use the magazine section of the pigeon-holes or you can email:
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.
Stapling Rota 2018
29 September 2018
Vic Harrington, Pam Hagan, Helen Clarke
27 October 2018
Ju (Yezi) Len Zhen, Val Hayes, Shivane Woodger
24 November 2018
Ju(yezi) Lan Zhen, Shivane
5 January 2019
Ken Cope, Gill Bird
26 January 2019
Peter Lamb, Carol Lamb
23 February 2019
Eleanor Pritchard, Helen Clarke
30 March 2019
Ken Cope, Gill Bird
(10.00 am Saturday Morning in the Church or earlier as arranged)