ASK – Passiontide

Vicar’s Blog ~ March 29th 2020 ASK – Passiontide Dear friends, This weekend it is Passion Sunday – the Fifth Sunday of Lent, which falls between the respite of Mothering Sunday and the beginning of the agonies and ecstasies of Holy Week. There is little respite for us, hunkered in our bunkers. I do hope and pray that everyone is … Read More

Distance yourselves and stay close to God…

ASK for help poster

Vicar’s Blog ~ 18 March 2020 ‘Distance yourselves and stay close to God…’ Dear friends, Distance yourselves and stay close to God… It was not my plan to write daily, but then plans are not quite where we are at at the moment! I’ve been writing this on and off all day, and things change from one hour to the … Read More

Vicar’s blog Coronavirus Special

Vicar’s Blog ~ Coronavirus Special 16 March 2020 Dear beloved friends, This is a time of anxiety and uncertainty, we all know. I am writing, firstly to assure you of support and prayer and love. Some people are self-isolating, or are simply a bit worried, or indeed are not worried! In any event and wherever you stand in the field … Read More

The God of Abraham Praise

Angels at Mamre, Trinity by Rublev Lent 2 2020 ~ The God of Abraham Praise Genesis 12.1–4a; Romans 4.1–5,13–17; John 3.1–17 On the wall behind me, in the inset by the window are two figures, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus. We often forget that they are there, because we think of our artworks as portraying the angels on one side … Read More

Vicar’s blog March 2020

Dear friends, By now you will probably have heard our news, announced on 23rd February, that after 17 years as Vicar of St Mary Magdalene’s, I have accepted the invitation from the Crown to take up the post of Canon Chancellor of Rochester Cathedral. Such a decision and all it entails yields a mixture of emotions for us all, inevitably, … Read More

Magazine February 2020

2020 Ash Wednesday magazine

This year’s Lent Book is by David Walker, Bishop of Manchester, who writes: ‘Again and again, as I have sought to look into both the scriptures and my own life, I have heard in the silence the one who assures me, ever more strongly, ‘You are mine’. My hope and prayer is that you who read it will hear something … Read More

Vicar’s Blog February 2020

Dear Friends, Perhaps you saw the harrowing and shaming couple of programmes about Bishop Peter Ball and his high crimes and misdemeanours on television recently. They were not happy watching by any means, and it may only be small comfort to know that nowadays any appointment of any clergyman or woman is also accompanied by rigorous safeguarding checks and compliances. … Read More

The Character, Chemistry and Competence of Calling

Matthew 4:12-23 I wonder what the job description of a disciple would have been? Nowadays, if you want to appoint someone, whether they be a teacher, receptionist or vicar, there are job descriptions, person descriptions, contracts, terms and conditions, statements of particulars and all that kind of paraphernalia. You’ll be pleased to know, if you saw that harrowing and shaming … Read More

The Baptism of Christ 2020

Matthew 3.13-17 Happy Christmas! You think it’s all over?! The Pantomime season may be over – oh no it’s not – oh yes it is… But Christmas is not. The eastern Churches have only just celebrated Christmas this week – on January 6th – and we still have four weeks to go. Don’t sigh – for now the fun begins. … Read More

Magazine January 2020

2020-01 The Caught Moment Art Evening

Dear Friends, I hope you had a good Christmas and a happy new year. Thank you for all the cards we received. It was a good Christmas in Church too, attendances at the Christmas services were up, as was the generosity from congregations, and indeed so too was the amount of money we raised for external charities, mostly Crisis at … Read More

Christmas Eve 2019: The Father is Born

Somewhere at home you have probably got your Birth Certificate. It might be buried in a drawer, kept safe, or it might be lost in the mists of time! Someone else might even have it. In any event, everyone has a birth certificate issued when their birth is registered with the state in the days after their birth. This has … Read More

Nine Lessons and Carols 2019

O Lord, grant that what we sing with our lips, we may believe in our hearts, and what we believe in our hearts, we may show forth in our lives. Amen. You have probably noticed that at this time of year there is a very perceptible crescendo of carol singing as we approach Christmas Day. Radio stations have their sonic … Read More

Advent 4 2019

Do you remember the Blue Peter Advent Crown? Every year the long-running children’s programme used to show the nation’s children how to make an advent crown, a decoration for the season, fashioned out of coat hangers and tinsel. The candle holders were made out of bottle tops, and the tinsel wrapped around it. Simple.  Simple but deadly! I don’t think … Read More

Advent Sunday 2019

Romans 13:11-end – Matthew 24:36-44 It’s always difficult on a train not to overhear people’s conversations, even if one can only hear one side of it. On Wednesday while on a train I sat opposite someone who took a phone call from someone claiming to be a policeman, who was ringing to ask this person about someone called Bethany her … Read More

All Souls 2019 ~ Marking the end

Revelation 20:11-12; 21:1-8 When someone dies, one of the many realities that strike at the soul is the paperwork that is issued by civic authorities – the death certificate. It is a stark document, perfunctory and precise, stating simply that someone has died and that it is now official. It is also a necessary document, for without it funeral arrangements … Read More

All Saints Day 2019

Many years ago I recall seeing an article in a newspaper that had a graphic of a railway carriage seating plan, with passengers of various shapes and sizes, and above each seat was a price. The purpose of the illustration was to show that each person in the carriage had paid a different price for their ticket, even though they … Read More

Trinity 18 2019 ~ John Henry Newman

2 Tim 3:14-4:5 – Luke 18:1-8 How do you pray? – How do you pray? According to an official Church of England press release this week, Church of England prayer apps were used more than five million times over the last year as a record number of people sought Christian contemplation and reflection online. Apps allowing users to pray the … Read More

Jackie’s Harvest Farewell

All the food you have brought – thank you so much. It is all going to the North Enfield Foodbank. Imagine mixing it all together – opening all those tins and packets and putting it in one great food mixer/processor. It would be terrible. And each item on its own is fine, but one tin of beans doesn’t add up to, … Read More

Magazine October 2019

2019 Harvest

When we commemorated the end of the First World War last November we looked back at the parish magazines from 100 years earlier to see what people were saying at the time – particularly what the vicar wrote in the magazine and other parish records. Since then I’ve been very aware that what one writes now is not just for … Read More

Vicar’s Blog October 2019

When we commemorated the end of the First World War last November we looked back at the parish magazines from 100 years earlier to see what people were saying at the time – particularly what the vicar wrote in the magazine and other parish records. Since then I’ve been very aware that what one writes now is not just for … Read More