Magazine February 2021

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Parish Magazine ~ February 2021

Due to the Coronavirus ‘Lockdown’ of March 2020 onwards, the Parish magazine is published mainly online and only a few copies printed for archival purposes.

Our Curate, The Rev'd Maureen Lunn, have been writing by email to members of the congregation, and the content appears here.

ASK: Feast of the Epiphany

"Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews?"

Dear friends,

friends old and new, Happy New Year. A greeting that is given more in hope than in the now. We have the promise of a vaccine that is already being rolled out but also the new variant of COVID that has proved to be more infectious. We must not let our guard down now. Please keep following the rules, "Hands Face Space" Bishop Sarah has made it clear that the Church must not be the source of cases that overwhelms our NHS.

We have the Morning Star to lead us into 2021 and the precious gift of the Christ child, who came to be our saviour. Let us all renew our efforts to live for him, loving God and our neighbour.

So keep doing what we can to stay safe and keep well.

Mo


Ask The Baptism of Christ

“You are my Son: the beloved”

Dear friends,

friends old and new, we are entering a very worrying time. The AstroZenica vaccine is beginning it’s rollout, joining the Pfizer vaccine, and many more of our older friends will begin a slightly more open life. But we also see the worries of parents and teachers who are not confident about their children's education. The rates of transmission of the virus increase. What can we do? What we must do is to follow the rules and pray. Pray for all those affected, all our care workers and front line staff, and trust in the beloved Son.

May we all stay safe and well until we can meet and worship together again.

Mo.


ASK: The Second Sunday of Epiphhany

“Speak Lord, your servant is listening.”

1Samuel 3: 1-10

Dear friends,

friends old and new, it seems that most of us are listening and staying home to stay safe. But so many more than in the spring are not. I was shocked the other day to see an Underground Platform absolutely rammed with commuters wearing very few masks. The result will be evident in the weeks ahead.

Please make a special effort to pray this week for all who work in the NHS and all who work to support them. Many other people have volunteered to become vaccinators, helping all of us to begin the recovery we look forward to.

Are we listening, listening to God and our neighbour that is? There are lots of people who are struggling with isolation, anxiety and depression, so I urge you to keep in touch with others even if only to listen and then to pray.

Keep safe and well dear friends.

Mo


ASK: The Third Sunday of Epiphhany

“Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage of the Lamb.” John2:1-11

Dear friends,

friends old and new, I am astonished to hear that groups of people are standing outside hospitals protesting that covid-19 is a hoax. They do this in the face of our NHS staff as they go in and out, to and from the most exhausting shifts of their lives. There are others who are targeting vulnerable communities to persuade them the vaccine is dangerous and a ploy of the government to control the people with micro chips. I hope that you will join me in letting others know  these people are not only mistaken but are really dangerous. “TAKE THE VACCINE” I cannot wait for mine. It is the way to a new normal, because we will have to live with corona viruses just as we do with measles.

Enough of wagging the finger. Today we turn our minds to the heavenly banquet that awaits us. In the past, when I explained to young Brownies that our Eucharist was a party, several asked why the people didn't look happy. Just a thought, will we be filled with joy when we can gather at his table again? I know that I will be.

Love and prayers from

Mo


ASK: Candlemas

“Lord now let your servant depart in peace.” Mark 1:21-28

Dear friends,

friends old and new we have come to the end of the Christmas season. It is time now to take down any decorations you may still have up. We look forward from now to Easter with a "miserable" Lent. Miserable was a term used by my sending church vicar and I suspect that many of us are feeling pretty miserable at the moment. I have had three difficult conversations this week with bereaved friends, none due to covid, and we all mourn the loss of our friend Jayne Buckland. Where is our God in all this? I point you back to what Archbishop Justine had to say in his interview on the BBC Breakfast news this week. God is right here, in the midst of us and I would add right up to his ankles in our frustration and pain. On Wednesday we remembered the Holocaust Memorial day and the appauling loss of life in WW2. I hope the suggestion of a Covid Memorial Day comes to fruition, when we can remember the appauling worldwide loss of life during the pandemic. May I add an encouragement to everyone to take the vaccine when it is offered and encourage others to do the same. There is nothing in the vaccine to harm you, to change you or cause anything other than to keep you safe.

Stay safe and well.

Mo

From the Parish Registers

The Bells 2020

Because of Covid-19, 2020 has been a wash out where bellringing is concerned.

From March 2020 when it all started, try as we may, all bellringing throughout world (I think) was cancelled.

We did on occasions ring 4, as long as we kept a 2m distance, unless you were from the same household, like Jill and David, Janet and me. Janet couldn’t ring anyway, because of a injured shoulder.

David and Jill have managed to turn the “bells over” just to keep the mechanism moveable.

Some of us have turned to “The Ringing Room” A computer orchestrated virtual ringing chamber, where we meet weekly via video link and ring rounds, and methods by the touch of a key and seeing the sally go up and down and hear a peal of bells, from 6 to 12, good fun!

Peter R

Events for 2021

For the time being all regular church and home based events: Coffee Mornings, Fellowship, Lunchtime Concerts and Bible Study are, regrettably, cancelled. We aim to be hosting a monthly social evening via Zoom. Please check the weekly email for more information.

Jayne Buckland

It is with sadness that I have to let you know that Jayne Buckland has passed peacefully Tuesday afternoon (26 Jan) after a long battle with Leukaemia, her daughter and niece beside her. Jayne will be remembered in our prayers. She will also be remembered for the next two weeks at in the live service at Rochester Cathedral which is available on their Facebook page.

Here is Isabelle’s post from Facebook:

Hi everyone this is Isabelle, Jayne’s daughter.

I’m sorry to say Jayne passed peacefully away on Tuesday afternoon. Thank you so much for your thoughts and prayers, they mean so much to me and my family. I also know my mum was so thankful for your support through her illness.

We have set up a tribute fund in aid of Macmillan in memory of my mum. We’re so thankful for all the care they gave her. If you would like to donate here is the link:

https://tributefunds.macmillan.org.uk/In-Memory/Jayne-Buckland?fbclid=IwAR0DBHf4fHbvJg_mn_pFlNwkkbK5MHVOkrctvWqKvaZpKDkbLdVdEZyD5qE