Author Archives: bettyevans2010

Pentecost 17 September 27th 2020

Beloved in Christ

This week we break away from the teachings of the Pentecost season, to celebrate harvest!

It is necessary to halt our life journey to gather to say thank you to God for the abundance of the earth.  We have moved so far from co-existence and co-operation between nature and humankind, yet this vulnerable living earth has continued to hold us, keep us and sustain us.  After just passing the autumn equinox on the 22nd, Tuesday, we look on a wonderful harvest.  I have never lived so close to the farmland before, its produce growing alongside our paths, the harvest, the bales of hay, fresh ploughing and seeding.  Thank you Lord for awakening us to your bounty, the changes, as a good season has yielded its harvest, and that there are good prospects for the next season.

Of course, our liturgical colours echo this green season, and we have much for which to be thankful and grateful.  In our prayers, let us enumerate our blessings, and in community for their faithfulness and positivity.  I endeavour to, like you, keep close to all the churches in our two villages, and share the desire to live together, and explore ways of deepening our bonds.  I ask for your prayers please. I am delighted that St Mary’s and St Margaret’s cross-pollinate so much and within their respective communities, sharing our spiritual harvest with others.

I urge you to look at your own harvest in this past year.  How have you changed, allowed God to breath newly into you, heal you, comfort you, restore you? It is my first harvest here, and it was hard not to seek to be part of the flower arrangers and helpers.  I am trying to ‘be’ not ‘do’! Tomorrow, I will share and I feel excited at the prospect. Harvest time, in the midst of bounty and beauty, is a good time to consider your life, and what your lifetime harvest brings in, how you are serving others as part of your covenant with God, as his chosen one in a chosen community, and of faith.  It has been a time of poignant memory for me, and bit by bit each part has been a coloured growth of my own harvest.  A lifetime is a short season, and you, I and God have more seasons to share. 

Tomorrow awaits and we will take lots of pictures to share with you, if you cannot be at church.

Regarding church matters, I attach the latest in the guidelines for Covid safety. I think we are doing our best to keep safe, but do read, especially the part about sanitising before and after taking communion.  I see a number of us are bringing our own sanitisers which is easier than using the positioned ones in church.

file:///C:/Users/User/Downloads/Message%20on%20behalf%20of%20the%20College%20of%20Bishops%20(24.09.20).pdf

file:///C:/Users/User/Downloads/Revised%20Phase%203%20Guidance%20(Version%205%20-%2024.9.2020)%20(marked%20up).pdf

file:///C:/Users/User/Downloads/Revised%20Pastoral%20Guidelines%20for%20Phase%203%20(Version%204%20-%2024.09.20)%20(highlighted).pdf

file:///C:/Users/User/AppData/Local/Temp/%7B17B2B1A2-50A2-4777-90F7-AD0BF5579720%7D/Frequently%20Asked%20Questions%20for%20Phase%203%20(Version%204%20-%2024.09.20)%20(highlighted).pdf

Here are the readings:

READINGS

Deuteronomy 8: 7 – 18

Psalm 65

2 Corinthians 9: 6 – 15

Luke 12: 16 – 30

You might like to look up and sing some of the harvest hymns:

105, 128#, 291#, 290

And now, some poetry, to let you adventure into a new or familiar time, and glorify God! They are selected by Ann Bridges, for your pleasure.  You might like to use some of the words for your prayer:

1. A Thanksgiving to God

Tis Thou that crownst my glittering hearth 

         With guiltless mirth; 

And givst me wassail-bowls to drink, 

         Spiced to the brink. 

Lord, tis Thy plenty-dropping hand 

         That feeds my land; 

And givst me, for my bushel sown, 

         Twice ten for one; 

Thou makst my teeming hen to lay 

         Her egg each day; 

Besides my healthful ewes to bear 

         Me twins each year; 

The while the conduits of my kine 

         Run cream, for wine. 

All these, and better, Thou dost send 

         Me, to this end, 

That I should render, for my part, 

         A thankful heart, 

Which, fired with incense, I resign, 

         As wholly Thine; 

But the acceptance, that must be, 

         My Christ, by Thee. 

Robert Herrick

 2. The Harvest

Sun on the mountain,

Shade in the valley,

Sun, like a gold sword

Plucked from the scabbard,

Striking the wheat-fields,

Splendid and lusty,

Close-standing, full-headed,

Toppling with plenty.

Shade, like a shield,

Kindly and ample,

Sweeping the wheat-fields

Darkening and tossing.

Acres of gold wheat

Stir in the sunshine,

Rounding the hill-top,

Crested with plenty,

Filling the valley,

Brim with abundance,

Laden with odours

Of peace and of plenty,

Soft comes the wind

From the ranks of the wheat-field,

Bearing a promise 

Of harvest and sickle-time,

And wagons of bread,

Slow-laden and lumbering

Through the gateways of cities.

Duncan Campbell Scott

3. Tis sweet, when fields are ringing

With the merry crickets singing,

Oft to mark with curious eye

If the vine-trees time be nigh:

Here is now the fruit whose birth

Cost some throes to Mother Earth.

Sweet it is, too, to be telling,

How the luscious figs are swelling;

Then to riot without measure

In the rich, nectareous treasure,

While our grateful voices chime,–

Happy season! blessed time. 

Aristophanes

Thank you to each of you for your non-perishables, for your steadfastness, the time preparing the loveliness, and for a beautiful leaflet!

God bless! Be thankful! Keep joyful and share, so that others might benefit from your kindness.

Kathy Barrable

07554 805 359

Pentecost 16 September 20th 2020

Beloved in Christ
Grace and peace to you in our Lord Jesus Christ!
I pray that you are coping within the spots of resurgence of Covid, and finding that the ‘Rule of 6’ (people and 2 households) is not frustrating you too much. From what I hear from the PrimeMinister, we should be very cautious as we expect to enter a possible wave of Covid. Let us pray together for safety, and awareness of the needs of others. Let us pray too for the development of a vaccine before winter sets in. I know we are finding this time a challenge, and please know that you are prayed for by name.
I am very proud of our community, and the caution you are exercising, yet coming to church and being in communion together. For those of you shielding at home, it has been a great privilege to visit you and receive your loving hospitality. The weather has been fine enough to be able to sit outside!
Newport today is scented with the whiff of manure, so farmers are preparing for winter crops already, as they plow their fields again after the summer harvest. It is a privilege to have the country so close to us that we are a part of seasonal movement, and encounter some of the dear little animals along the way: I speak of toads, hedgehogs and squirrels, and the birds chattering away in their language of uninhibited cheerfulness. I believe that there are otters in Tayview estate! (I have
spent a lifetime of hide and seek elusiveness with them and look forward to an encounter!)

So of course we look forward to HARVEST FESTIVAL next Sunday. I hear whispers of plans and organising for the occasion, and I look forward to sharing it all with you!

Understanding Christians in Fowler's Stages of Faith | Faith on the Fringe

This week we will be looking at the readings in the framework of James Fowler’s 6 stages of faith development. I have found it very interesting to look at this model once again and in the light of the week’s readings, after many years of studenthood, and apply those stages to Jonah, running from God, railing against God, and witnessing God’s compassion for and love of the people of Nineveh,
outsiders to the Hebrew faith. How many examples do we not have of Jesus
healing and addressinSamaritans, travelling itheir country, welcominthe outsiders, those whare reviled and outcast? Iis a salutary lesson for us. The gospel parable of the
landlord who pays those who might not have worked as long and hard as those faithful ones reminds me of the Prodigal Son, whose elder brother adopts much of the same attitude. I thought that you might like to look at your own faith path through a refreshing although challenging new lens today. See how your life’s religious path has been, whether you yearn to break out of a stale pattern of thinking and into a broader faith, or whether you know others who have moved along and a step up. It might be that lockdown has made you slip backwards, in the isolation and frustration which affects us so keenly. I also know that outsiders imagine that the Christian doctrine has either hurt them or put them off entering the main doors of the church. I do know, from Jesus, that every soul on this earth yearns for a spiritual connection, and we who have that can learn from them as to how to share it. Enjoy the exercise!


The readings are: Jonah 3: 10 – 4: 11; Psalm 145: 1 – 8; Philippians1: 21 – 30; Matthew 20: 1 – 16
Hymns are:
St Mary’s: 224 Lead us heavenly father lead us….1,2,3; 233 O thou who camest from
above…1,3,4;104# Holy, holy, holy, holy…1,4,5;91# Great is thy faithfulness… 1,2,3
St Margaret’s:1. Be thou my vision 70; 2. Lord, thy word abideth 420; Holy, holy, holy 286 Great is thy faithfulness


Collect: Almighty God, you have created the heavens and the earth, and ourselves in your image. Teach us to discern your hand in all your works and to serve you with reverence and thanksgiving; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.


OUR ZOOM meeting on Wednesday at 8 will look at Fowler’s model in more depth. Hope to see you there. Otherwise, let us share what you think?
Remember that the online service from the SCE is on from 11am on Sundays and the Service of the Word on Thursday evening.
May the Lord bless you and keep you
May the Lord make his face to shine upon you
And give you peace
Kathy Barrable
0755 503 859

Pentecost 15 September 13th 2020

Sisters and brothers in Christ
I trust this week has been a good one for you? I have done a little visiting and phoning, and it seems as if the Covid implications are bothering many of us, as it breaks out further and the way in which the government sees fit to isolate areas and also impose restrictions. We are perhaps forced to accept that it is here as part of our lives and that the future will be enmeshed in its implications. However, we are satisfied that our churches are doing whatever is necessary to safeguard us appropriately, and thank you for being so vigilant and aware. Be assured that you are being prayed for, and that I am willing to come to you whenever you wish.I attach two items of interest1. Last Sunday’s sermon, e-news and Zoom meeting included references to icons, and here is a video of a service in which icons are used as a refreshing way of praying. https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83445702981?pwd=YnE2c2xxREcrVm80bUhhSkZKN04rQT09

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This classical Greek Orthodox icon of the Trinity invites the viewer, YOU, to take a seat and join them, spending time considering how you are part of the Divine Dance (the title Richard Rohr gives to his book). 2. The second attachment includes a structure of us, as church, within the circles of Area Council, and of the Diocese. It is good to see how all the functioning parts of our church interrelate: buildings, investments, monies, and mission fit into the greater whole, also to know that the Bishop and Diocese are there as an integral part of our good functioning and spiritual wellbeing. 
Zoom seems to be part of our lives now and I am sure it or other ways of videoconferencing will become permanent parts of our engagements; sharing and mulling over initiatives, decision-making and in healthy exchange. I urge you to find a way of using Zoom: we are here to help and encourage us to do so.
This week I am including two more regular items: 1. Hymns.  Our tradition is so very intertwined with music and words which are so meaningful to us as Episcopalians, with a very distinctive repertoire. I have included the first line so that you can look them up on youtube, and sing along, or even use the lyrics as prayers.  As you know our congregations are taking all books used at church, home with them. Should you like a hymn book, do ask us and we can bring one to you, or arrange to fetch a copy from church.

HYMNS: 198. Ye holy angels bright….

#114 I bind myself today…..  or 72 Bind us together, Lord….

115. Dear Lord and father of mankind… 

169 The church of God a kingdom is.

 2.The Collect. It is comforting to be praying with Episcopalians world wide on the theme of the collects and be aware of the way they surround the readings of the day in prayer.

COLLECT: Guard your church O Lord.

With your perpetual mercy: and since without your aid we lose our way,

Draw us always, by your help, away from harm,

And steer us towards salvation;

Through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives with you,

In the unity of the Holy Spirit,

Amen

3.  READINGS Genesis 50: 15 – 21. Psalm 103: 8 – 13. Romans 14: 1 – 12.   Matthew 18: 21 – 35

The theme is around forgiveness, and we will look at the ongoing need for personal, societal, historical and cultural awareness

of this ongoing need. Perhaps you would like to look at some wondrous examples of the freedom which emanates from, and 

continues throughout our lives through forgiveness. I share some other more recent examples of peoples who have

exemplified this spirit: Etty Hillesum,Thich Nhat Hanh, Desmond Tutu. Should you wish to look up these people, you

will enter a most inspiring and comforting world seen through another’s eyes.

This is, with so many activities curtailed, a perfect time for deeper reflection.

Once again, your sharing of your experience will be wonderful, whether as we worship together, visit, or use the 

tools of  writing.

God bless in all you do. May your life be tinged with the deepening colours nature is revealing in this end of summer

and early autumn season.

Kathy Barrable

07552 503859

Pentecost 14 September 6th 2020

Beloved in Christ

We have journeyed through 13 weeks of the ‘green’ season of Pentecost.  It is a wonderful phase of learning, of studying scripture and seeing the radical new life Jesus offers us.  Green represents growth, and each of us have grown wiser and stronger in our faith, within the circle of loving ecclesia, the body of the church.  Whether you have been following us from home or within church, we hope you have felt included in our journey. 

Lockdown, even further back,from its inception on March 23rd brought on new, alarming and uncomfortable changes in our lives, which in turn have forced every one of us to re-evaluate and – appreciate simple goodness at home. 

On the 27th we will celebrate Harvest Festival, and this might be an outward and visible sign of an inner and invisible journey in which we now harvest the fruits of our personal season of growth. One of the loveliest memories of harvest is that it is gathered and shared with the needy in the community. I thank you for God too, for the harvest of memories of the many wonderful meetings in our homes, within those safe spaces, as we started both a new relationship and phase in our church history.

Jesus, this week, speaks of relationship, of loving and helping one another to the point of playing a vital role in a personal crisis, or around whatever makes one feel and outsider to the community: he shows ‘church’ as holding a people of extraordinary resilience, wisdom, compassion and in that sacred space, providing a safe space to for confidentiality and response to a personal cry for help.


I believe that is what our church is doing right now: providing human resources to assist others in whatever way is demanded, in the time of Covid crisis. We certainly have experienced changes to meet restrictions, but we hope that the worship and teaching has been nourishing and vitalising.  May we continue to mirror the wonderful qualities our Saviour offers us once again in this week’s readings.

We are urged to dialogue with God in thanksgiving, and with contrite hearts, yearning to be re-filled and re-aligned and re-guided into the light.  We are, Romans reminds us, people of light.

Let us seek it together, and help one another find it! We all enter dark patches, and depend on each other to lead us gently into brighter places. I am so grateful that we do have one another, and our bright spaces of worship, and that slowly, others are coming to join us.

If you are unable to get to church, and would like to receive communion and a chat at home, please let us know.

The online Sunday Eucharist is ongoing, and I am sure many of us are enjoying our bishops’ exposition of the Word, encouragement and sacred Joy. There is also a Thursday evening online Service of the Word, which is an inspiring and comforting mid-week service.

Here are the readings:

Ezekiel 33: 7 – 11

Psalm 119: 33 to 40

Romans 13: 8 to 14

Matthew 18: 15 to 20


With every blessing

Kathy Barrable

07552 503859