Wednesday, 26 August 2020

WEB MAGAZINE - November

November Rector's Pages:


Remembrance Service - Sunday 8th November


We are lucky that the war memorials in our villages stand in churches or churchyards, because this means that any “Act of Remembrance” is also classed as an act of “Public Worship” and therefore the coronavirus restrictions that apply, are those for a “Place of Worship”.  


In a nutshell this means that there are no limits on numbers BUT we must observe the following rules:

1.   Wear a mask/face covering (unless unable to do so for medical reasons).

2.   Keep a 2 metre distance between individuals or bubbles.

3.   Use hand sanitiser or wash hands regularly.

4.   Don’t attend if you feel unwell or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19.


All the Acts of Remembrance locally will therefore be held outside the churches.  PLEASE respect the rules and help us keep each other safe.


This year - because we have been unable to hold services and celebrations for the anniversaries of VE and VJ Day - there will be readings to mark these historic events, just as we recently did for the end of WW1 and D’Day, and the length of the service will be reduced.


Please bring deckchairs and wrap up warm.


THE UNKNOWN WARRIOR


On November 7th, 1920, in strictest secrecy, four unidentified British bodies were exhumed from temporary battlefield cemeteries at Ypres, Arras, the Asine and the Somme. None of the soldiers who did the digging were told why. The bodies were taken by field ambulance to GHQ at St-Pol-Sur-Ter Noise. There the bodies were draped with the union flag. Sentries were posted and Brigadier-General Wyatt and a Colonel Gell selected one body at random. A French honour guard was selected and stood by the coffin overnight. On the morning of the 8th, a specially designed coffin made of oak from the grounds of Hampton Court was brought and the unknown warrior placed inside. On top was placed a crusaders sword and a shield on which was inscribed 'a British Warrior who fell in the GREAT WAR 1914-1918 for king and country'.


On The 9th of November, the unknown warrior was taken by horse-drawn carriage through guards of honour and the sound of tolling bells and bugle calls to the quayside. There it was saluted by Marechal Foche and loaded onto HMS Verdun bound for Dover..... the coffin stood on the deck covered in wreaths and surrounded by the French honour guard.


On arrival at Dover, the unknown warrior was greeted with a 19 gun salute, normally only reserved for field marshals. He then traveled by special train to Victoria Station London.  He stayed there overnight and on the morning of the 11th of November, he was taken to Westminster Abbey. 


The idea of the unknown warrior was thought of by a Padre called David Railton who had served at the front during the great war and it was the union flag he used as an altar cloth at the front, that had been draped over the coffin. It was his intention that all relatives of the 517,773 combatants whose bodies had not been identified could believe that the unknown warrior could very well be their lost husband, father, brother or son.... 


Every year on the 11th of November we remember the unknown warrior ....


At the going down of the sun, and in the morning, 

We will remember them.


O God of truth and justice, we hold before you those whose memory we cherish, and those whose names we will never know. Help us to lift our eyes above the torment of this broken world, and grant us dignity as we pray for those who wish us harm.  As we honour the past, may we put our faith in your future; for you are the source of life and hope, now and for ever.   Amen.



From the Church Records:


23rd September   Grace Light, 84 years; ashes interred at Shepton Beauchamp church.

25th September   Vera Ramage, 88 years: buried with her beloved husband Doug, at Barrington Church.

7th October         “Terry” Blaxall, 78 years: ashes interred at Barrington Church.

14th October         Della Thorne, 91 years young: buried with her late husband Cyril, in Barrington church, the village where she lived her entire life; truly a Barrington girl.





TAKE TIME

Take time to be still, to look, to hear and to see God in creation. Think of new ways of being church to your neighbours. New ways of reaching out by picking up the phone and saying hello are you alright do you need help, are you coping.


God of healing, surround us with your love,

as together we negotiate the complexities of coronavirus.

Guide us all as we seek to support one another. 

Help us to be attentive to the lonely, the isolated, 

the fearful and those who are ill.

Mindful of the geographical isolation of many rural communities, 

we pray for everyone involved in the effective provision of food, 

medical supplies and pastoral care.

In the name of Jesus Christ, who walks alongside us in our difficulties.  Amen







LOVED AND LOST

Shepton Beauchamp 8th November at 5.30pm

and

Chillington 15th November at 4.30pm


Most of us have loved someone who has died, and from the earliest times the Christian Church recognised the grief and pain that this brings.   It has also understood that the opportunity to remember those we have loved and lost, is an important part of the grieving process.   So each year we hold a simple, quiet, candle-lit service were we can remember our loved ones and, if you would like, theirs names can be read out and you can light a candle in their memory.

Please bring a torch.






Saying Goodbye, (part of the Mariposa Trust) are coming back to Devon in November with two Baby loss remembrance and support services (part of a Nationwide chain of events). Due to Covid-19 this is not our traditional service but we are happy to be able to bring a service to bereaved parents in your area.


The Mariposa Trust’s core objective is to support people who have lost babies at any stage of pregnancy, at birth, or in infancy. It was founded in 2012, by Zoe and Andy Clark-Coates, who saw a critical lack of support for people like them, who had gone through baby loss. With over 258,000 babies being lost yearly in the UK alone, the charity needed to be able to offer not only a comprehensive package of befriending and support but also national baby loss remembrance services (called Saying Goodbye Services), for people to join together and remember the children they had lost. 5 years on, over 130 services have taken place at Cathedrals and Minsters across the UK, US, and France, and 2020 will see services across England, Wales, and Scotland, Covid-19 permitting.


On the 7th November at 11.30am, in Exeter Cathedral, Exeter

and 11th November 7pm in St Andrew's Minster, Plymouth

we will be hosting one of our Saying Goodbye Services.


Places are free but should be booked online via https://www.sayinggoodbye.org/sgmbep-20-booking-page/ to guarantee a space, as services are strictly 40 maximum per service.


So who is the service for?   Anyone who has either personally lost a baby at any stage of pregnancy, at birth, or in early years, or who has been affected by a family members or friends' loss.  Whether the loss was recent or 80 years ago, everyone is welcome to attend. We have also extended the services, and gladly welcome anyone who is grieving the fact that they haven't had children. This may be due to circumstance, infertility or for other reasons - but all are welcome. Babies and children are also invited to come with their family, as the Saying Goodbye service is truly a family event for all.


We know that as 1 in 4 women suffer miscarriage and baby loss, you will have contact with a significant number of people who have either personally suffered baby loss, or who have a partner or family member that has.



Villages websites:


BARRINGTON - barringtonvillage.btck.co.uk

DOWLISH WAKE - dowliswake.com

KINGSTONE - kingstoneparish.org

STOCKLINCH - stocklinch.org.uk 

SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP - sheptonbeauchamp.org.uk


Thinking Outside the Box (Creative Thinking)

  In a small Italian town, hundreds of years ago, a small business owner owed a large sum of money to a loan-shark. The loan-shark was a very old, unattractive looking who just so happened to fancy the business owner’s daughter.

  He decided to offer the businessman a deal that would completely wipe out the debt he owed him. However, the catch was that we would only wipe out the debt if he could marry the businessman’s daughter.  Needless to say, this proposal was met with a look of disgust.

  The loan-shark said that he would place two pebbles into a bag, one white and one black. The daughter would then have to reach into the bag and pick out a pebble. If it was black, the debt would be wiped, but the loan-shark would then marry her. If it was white, the debt would also be wiped, but the daughter wouldn’t have to marry the loan-shark.

  Standing on a pebble-strewn path in the businessman’s garden, the loan-shark bent over and picked up two pebbles.  Whilst he was picking them up, the daughter noticed that he’d picked up two black pebbles and placed them both into the bag. He then asked the daughter to reach into the bag and pick one.  The daughter naturally had three choices as to what she could have done:

  1. Refuse to pick a pebble from the bag.
  2. Take both pebbles out of the bag and expose the loan-shark for cheating.
  3. Pick a pebble from the bag fully well knowing it was black and sacrifice herself for her father’s freedom.

  She drew out a pebble from the bag, and before looking at it ‘accidentally’ dropped it into the midst of the other pebbles. She said to the loan-shark;


“O how clumsy of me, never mind.  If you look into the bag for the one that is left, you will be able to tell which pebble I picked”. 

  The pebble left in the bag is obviously black, and seeing that loan-shark didn’t want to be exposed, he had to play along as if the pebble the daughter dropped was white, and clear her father’s debt.

 

Moral of the story:

It’s always possible to overcome a tough situation through outside the box thinking, and not give in to the only options you think you have to pick from.







October Rector’s Pages: 


The Window Story - A Bible Illustration 


   A window can be that through which we see the openness beyond or it can remind us of a prison with self as the centre. Sometimes lessons "sting" or as many say - "step on our toes!"  In reality these hard lessons can lead to a newness and refreshing in our lives and help us see the beauty beyond.


  A young couple moved into a new neighbourhood. The next morning while they are eating breakfast, the young woman saw her neighbour hanging the washing outside.

  "That laundry is not very clean," she said. "She doesn't know how to wash correctly. Perhaps she needs better detergent.” Her husband looked on, but remained silent. Every time her neighbour would hang her washing to dry, the young woman would make the same comments.

 

  About one month later, the woman was surprised to see the nice clean laundry on the line and said to her husband, "Look, she has learned how to wash properly. I wonder who taught her this?"

  

The husband said, "I got up early this morning and cleaned our windows.”


And so it is with life. What we see when watching others depends on the purity of the window through which we look.


  The lesson from the window story is obvious, before we judge others while looking out of the window, let us look in a mirror first and clean our own windows.


  Jesus taught about this in His Sermon on the Mount:

“Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye."  Matthew 7:1-5



This and That......


With the continuing revision of Covid restrictions I thought it would be useful just to re-iterate what we can do in our village churches.


Weddings, baptisms, funerals; these can and do go ahead, but the main restriction is on numbers, because the “two metre rule” has to be in place.  The maximum allowed is thirty however, a lot of our little churches can’t seat that many safely, and particularly for funerals, where the funeral director and bearers have to be included, the actual number of mourners is often only a handful. 


For this reason we try to do funerals outside - at the graveside (which is very traditional anyway and can easily accommodate thirty folk) or in the road outside the deceased’s house.  With careful management, these can be really respectful; recently I conducted one where the hearse was walked up the street to the house and the coffin was taken from the car and placed on a bier covered with flowers.  The family stood together on the drive and took part in the service, reading and giving short eulogies.  Friends and neighbours stood on their own doorstep and joined in.  At the end the hearse was again walked down the street until out of sight.


Weddings and baptisms can also be managed in a respectful way, with careful thought being given to seating plans, “bubbles” and distance.  A few weeks ago I conducted three weddings where we carefully and safely managed to get everyone invited into some really small churches!  The strange atmosphere and the determination to carry on as “normal” adds to the fun and makes them memorable - for the right reasons!


Sunday Services - acts of public worship in church, have a slightly different set of restrictions.  Here the limit on numbers is determined by how many can be seated, socially distanced.  You will notice the tables later in the magazine that from 11th  October church services are pretty much back to what they’re in early March, and all of them are open for private prayer at least once a week.


Things may change as the national picture changes and we will of course do our best to keep you informed.



TAKE TIME

Take time to be still, to look, to hear and to see God in creation. Think of new ways of being church to your neighbours. New ways of reaching out by picking up the phone and saying hello are you alright do you need help, are you coping.


God of healing, surround us with your love,

as together we negotiate the complexities of coronavirus.

Guide us all as we seek to support one another. 

Help us to be attentive to the lonely, the isolated, 

the fearful and those who are ill.

Mindful of the geographical isolation of many rural communities, 

we pray for everyone involved in the effective provision of food, 

medical supplies and pastoral care.

In the name of Jesus Christ, who walks alongside us in our difficulties.  Amen



From the Church Records:


5th September    Mia Wootten, holy baptism at Barrington Church

12th September  Sarah Lucas and William Mack, joined in holy matrimony at Puckington Church.

12th September  Wilfred Bond, holy baptism at Chillington Church



Classic misprints from around the world

From the Tilshead Newsletter; God is good. The vicar is better.

Local High School Dropouts Cut In Half.

Astronaut Takes Blame For Gas In Spacecraft.

New Study Of Obesity Looks For Larger Test Group.

Cold Wave Linked To Temperatures.

Next weekend's Fasting & Prayer Conference in Whitby includes all meals.

Fifth Sinday is Lent.

Sunday morning sermon: 'Jesus Walks on the Water.'

Sunday evening sermon: 'Searching for Jesus.'

Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands.

Remember in prayer the many who are sick of our community. Smile at someone it is hard to love. Say "Hell" to someone who doesn't care much about you.

Don't let worry kill you off- let the Church help.

Miss Charlene Mason sang 'I will not pass this way again,' giving obvious pleasure to the congregation.

For those of you who have children and don't know it, we have a nursery downstairs.

Next Thursday there will be tryouts for the choir. They need all the help they can get.

Irving Benson and Jessie Carter were married on October 24 in the church. So ends a friendship that began in their school days.

At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be 'What Is Hell?' Come early and listen to our choir practice.

Eight new choir robes are currently needed due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones.

Sign-up sheet for anyone wishing to be water-baptised on the table in the foyer.

Please place your donation in the envelope along with the deceased person you want remembered.

The church will host an evening of fine dining, super entertainment and gracious hostility.



Thinking Outside the Box (Creative Thinking)

  In a small Italian town, hundreds of years ago, a small business owner owed a large sum of money to a loan-shark. The loan-shark was a very old, unattractive looking who just so happened to fancy the business owner’s daughter.

  He decided to offer the businessman a deal that would completely wipe out the debt he owed him. However, the catch was that we would only wipe out the debt if he could marry the businessman’s daughter.  Needless to say, this proposal was met with a look of disgust.

  The loan-shark said that he would place two pebbles into a bag, one white and one black. The daughter would then have to reach into the bag and pick out a pebble. If it was black, the debt would be wiped, but the loan-shark would then marry her. If it was white, the debt would also be wiped, but the daughter wouldn’t have to marry the loan-shark.

  Standing on a pebble-strewn path in the businessman’s garden, the loan-shark bent over and picked up two pebbles.  Whilst he was picking them up, the daughter noticed that he’d picked up two black pebbles and placed them both into the bag. He then asked the daughter to reach into the bag and pick one.  The daughter naturally had three choices as to what she could have done:

  1. Refuse to pick a pebble from the bag.
  2. Take both pebbles out of the bag and expose the loan-shark for cheating.
  3. Pick a pebble from the bag fully well knowing it was black and sacrifice herself for her father’s freedom.

  She drew out a pebble from the bag, and before looking at it ‘accidentally’ dropped it into the midst of the other pebbles. She said to the loan-shark;


“O how clumsy of me, never mind.  If you look into the bag for the one that is left, you will be able to tell which pebble I picked”. 

  The pebble left in the bag is obviously black, and seeing that loan-shark didn’t want to be exposed, he had to play along as if the pebble the daughter dropped was white, and clear her father’s debt.

 

Moral of the story:

It’s always possible to overcome a tough situation through outside the box thinking, and not give in to the only options you think you have to pick from.



Villages websites:


BARRINGTON - barringtonvillage.btck.co.uk

DOWLISH WAKE - dowliswake.com

KINGSTONE - kingstoneparish.org

STOCKLINCH - stocklinch.org.uk 

SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP - sheptonbeauchamp.org.uk



FOR SHEPTON 


THE SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP CHARITY


Is a collection of charities for the benefit of residents of Shepton Beauchamp; some of the charities are several hundred years old. Any resident can apply ...


The Over 70's Christmas Box is a small payment, paid in early December, to help with the cost of Christmas and is payable to residents who are 70 years old or over and have lived in the village for 3 years or more.


If you are not yet receiving the Christmas Box and would like too, please call Richard on 01460 240604 to have your name added to the list (before 25th October please)to: The Clerk, Greystones, Middle Street, Shepton Beauchamp TA19 0LB





September Rector’s Pages: 

Prayer for beginners 4 – ‘Helps’ to prayer

  The last article was about a more reflective approach to prayer, and mentioned giving yourself time to rest into stillness. Not everyone finds that easy! This time here are a few suggestions of things that might help.


A place

  If you can find the right place that will help. Some folk have the privilege of praying regularly in church, where the atmosphere of shared prayer does make things easier! You may need to find a more personal place. Many people find that (for the deliberate time of prayer you set aside) it helps to have a regular place to pray in. It should be somewhere as quiet as possible, and with a chair on which you can sit comfortably but without danger of falling asleep! You can also buy prayer stools which some people find helpful.

  If your ‘prayer place’ can have somewhere to rest your Bible, and space for a candle and perhaps a cross, an icon, flower or something else to look at, that would be great.


A time

  Disciplined prayer does need time set apart, and most people find it helpful (when it’s possible) to have a regular time of day in which to pray. Find your own best time – it may depend on your own rhythms (whether you’re most awake in the mornings or the evenings) or your family or work circumstances. If there are others in the house, agree with them when you can have a few minutes undisturbed. Don’t try to set aside too long a time. You’ll find it harder to keep to, and probably a struggle to use well if you do manage – to begin with, at least.


A focus

  Looking at something, or perhaps listening to music, can be helpful especially as we settle in to prayer; a mentioned a candle, cross or other things to look at. Many people find that lighting a candle helps to mark out a ‘special’ time, and that looking at its flame while thinking of Christ, the light of the world, helps us to be still and at peace. An icon is a particular kind of spiritual painting, representing Jesus, God or one of the saints and symbolising their presence with us. A cross reminds us of God’s love for us in Jesus; something natural is another good possibility to help us to think and pray.

  Another thing which often helps is something to do. To use the beads of a rosary can be a good way of concentrating, and you don’t need to use the traditional Roman Catholic prayer, the ‘Hail Mary’ if you’re not comfortable with it. If you’d like to explore prayer with a rosary, or other prayer beads, ask (your Vicar or mother Priest) for a bit of advice.


A friend

  You may or may not find it helpful to pray with someone else. You don’t need to talk – you can pray side by side in silence if that’s more helpful. But it may well help to have a friend to whom you can at least talk about prayer and about how God is at work in your life. Why not make it an early part of your prayer to ask God to bring you together with the right person to support one another in this?

  Hopefully there has been something in these four articles that helps you to develop your own prayer and your friendship with God.



TAKE TIME

  Take time to be still, to look, to hear and to see God in creation. Think of new ways of being church to your neighbours. New ways of reaching out by picking up the phone and saying hello are you alright do you need help, are you coping.


God of healing, surround us with your love,

as together we negotiate the complexities of coronavirus.

Guide us all as we seek to support one another. 

Help us to be attentive to the lonely, the isolated, 

the fearful and those who are ill.

Mindful of the geographical isolation of many rural communities, 

we pray for everyone involved in the effective provision of food, 

medical supplies and pastoral care.

In the name of Jesus Christ, who walks alongside us in our difficulties.  Amen



From the Church Records:

11th August 2020   Peter DUNCAN Crossland, a native of Barrington, 81 years; ashes interred near his ancestors at Barrington church.



Villages websites:

BARRINGTON - barringtonvillage.btck.co.uk

DOWLISH WAKE - dowliswake.com

KINGSTONE - kingstoneparish.org

STOCKLINCH - stocklinch.org.uk 

SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP - sheptonbeauchamp.org.uk





A rabbit walks into the pub and says to the barman: “Can I have a Pussers Rum, and a ham, egg and cheese toastie please?”

  The barman is amazed, but gives the rabbit a Pussers Rum and a ham, egg and cheese toastie. The rabbit drinks the rum and eats the toastie. He then leaves.

  The following night the rabbit returns and again asks for a Pussers Rum, and  a ham, egg and cheese toastie. The barman, now intrigued by the rabbit and the extra drinkers in the pub, (because word gets round), gives the rabbit the rum and the toastie. The rabbit consumes them and leaves.

  The next night, the pub is packed with drinkers. In walks the rabbit and says, ‘A Pussers Rum and a ham, egg and cheese toastie, please barman.’ The crowd is hushed as the barman gives the rabbit his rum and toastie, and then they burst into applause as the rabbit wolfs them down.

  The next night there is standing room only in the pub. Coaches have been laid on for the crowds of patrons attending. The barman is making more money in one week than he did all last year. In walks the rabbit and says, ‘A Pussers Rum and a ham, egg and cheese toastie, please barman’. The barman says, ‘I’m sorry rabbit, old mate, old mucker, but we are right out of  ham, egg and cheese toasties.’.

  The rabbit looks aghast. The crowd has quietened to almost a whisper, when the barman clears his throat nervously and says, ‘We do have a very nice cheese and onion Toastie.’ The rabbit looks him in the eye and says, ‘Are you sure I will like it?’ The masses’ bated breath is ear shatteringly silent.

  The barman, with a roguish smile says, ‘Do you think that I would let down one of my best friends. I know you’ll love it.’ ‘Ok’, says the rabbit, ‘I’ll have a Pussers Rum and a cheese and onion toastie.’  The pub erupts with glee as the rabbit downs the rum and guzzles the toastie. He then waves to the crowd and leaves….


....NEVER TO RETURN!!!!!!


  One year later, in the now impoverished pub, the barman, (who has only served 4 drinks tonight, 3 of which were his), calls time. When he is cleaning down the now empty bar, he sees a small white form, floating above the bar.  

  The barman says, ‘Who are you?’, to which he is answered, ‘I am the ghost of the rabbit that used to frequent your public house.’

  The barman says, ‘I remember you. You made me famous. You would come in every night and have a Pussers Rum and a ham, egg and cheese toastie. Masses came to see you and this place was famous.’  The rabbit says, ‘Yes I know.’

  The barman said, ‘I remember, on your last night we didn’t have any and a ham, egg and cheese toasties. You had a cheese and onion one instead.’  

The rabbit said, ‘Yes, you promised me that I would love it.’


The barman said, ‘You never came back, what happened?’


‘I DIED’, said the rabbit.


‘NO!’ said the barman. ‘What from?’


After a short pause. The rabbit said…


‘Mixin-me-toasties.



Hidden Voices Somerset 

  Would you be interested in volunteering for a new local project supporting victims of Modern Slavery and exploitation? We are looking for a range of volunteers to help victims of modern slavery and exploitation in Somerset. Initially the main work will be supporting people in the first seven days after referral, but we will also work longer term with many of the victims.


  Hidden Voices Somerset (HVS) is a local response to Modern Slavery and all forms of exploitation.  Our primary focus is building asset-based community resilience through grassroots local groups - already established in Sedgemoor, Minehead and Chard, who themselves  are training new church and community groups, businesses and schools using clear and consistent Apps, tools and resources provided by The Clewer Initiative, to identify and report modern slavery and exploitation.


  Official figures show 62 victims across Somerset applied for statutory support through the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) in the year to March 2020. Analysis of National figures indicate that 90-95% of victims do not wish to enter the NRM when offered the opportunity to do so, indicating a potential existence of 900 current victims across Somerset.


  HVS has developed relationships with voluntary and statutory organisations, and after cross-agency consultation are running a six month pilot (1st October 2020 – 31st March 2021) Victim Support project for victims and those at risk. The project will be carried out in partnership with The Clewer Initiative (the national Church of England’s anti-slavery programme) and the National Victim Support Helpline.


The project has two key elements: Provision of Victim Support and building of an effective, self-sustaining Anti-Slavery Network across Somerset.


Volunteers are needed to enable provision of Victim Support



If you are interested in these roles or other work by HVS please contact: allie.white@bathwells.anglican.org Tel: 01749 588904


Please Note: The initial training will be on 10th September and 24th September 7pm, via Zoom and on Saturday 3rd October as a socially distance training in Bridgwater (venue to be confirmed). Safe recruitment procedures will be followed and attending the training does not guarantee that a volunteer placement will be offered.




FOR BARRINGTON 


In Memory of Rhona Hogg


Having originated in the North of England, Rhona became a primary school teacher and taught in Abingdon for many years. She had a passion for showing ponies in her younger years and whilst in Oxfordshire she often won prizes at national shows.  She was also an accomplished pianist and later loved playing the organ. Dogs and gardening also featured but were not taken quite as seriously.


Married to the late Maurice, she was a wonderful mother to Lizzie and Charlotte and loved her six grandchildren.  On retirement she and Maurice moved to Somerset nearly twenty years ago.  She finally settled in Barrington where she lived an incredibly happy new life with her beloved Tony, friends and Lola.  She enjoyed helping with village and church activities, and we will miss the smile that she always brought with her.


A celebration of her life will be arranged at St Mary’s Church in due course where we hope to raise the roof in an appropriately musical goodbye




FOR SHEPTON 


THE SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP CHARITY


Is a collection of charities for the benefit of residents of Shepton Beauchamp; some of the charities are several hundred years old. Any resident can apply for one of two main grants….


1. Are you a student going on to higher education(University) or perhaps you are doing an apprenticeship?


If so you could be entitled to a grant from Shepton Beauchamp Charity.


If you have lived in the village for 3 years or more and have not received the grant before, please apply in writing by the 30th September 2020 to: The Clerk, Greystones, Middle Street, Shepton Beauchamp TA19 0LB


2. The Over 70's Christmas Box is a small payment, paid in early December, to help with the cost of Christmas and is payable to residents who are 70 years old or over and have lived in the village for 3 years or more.


If you are not yet receiving the Christmas Box and would like too, please call Richard on 01460 240604 to have your name added to the list (before 25th October please).

Sunday, 2 August 2020

WEB MAGAZINE - August

Rector’s Pages: 


Prayer for beginners 3 – Listening to God

  We’ve talked in the last couple of articles about the side of prayer that’s to do with our speaking to God. Prayer is meant to be a conversation, though, and it’s good to spend time listening as well as talking. That’s not a bad thing to remember for any relationship, with God or with the important people in your life.


Starting with the Bible

  One of the most reliable ways to listen to God is through careful and prayerful reading of the Bible. Christians believe that this is God’s word – not dictated by him, but inspired by him and written by human authors over a period of more than a thousand years.

  For now I’m concerned with using the Bible as part of your prayers. One thing to do first is to get a good translation to read. In church we use the New Revised Standard Version. You might like this or the New International Version, but some others are easier to read. If you don’t have a Bible you’re comfortable reading, do ask for advice or call in to a specialist Christian bookshop and ask them to explain the differences between different translations. You’ll also find that you can buy Bibles with all kinds of ‘extras’  (notes, maps, indexes etc.), but the most important thing is that the text is accurate and readable.

   Then you need to decide which bits to read. It’s better for this kind of reading to concentrate on a short passage. You could use the readings we hear in Church on Sunday – if you’re able to get to Church they’re printed on a sheet, or you can buy a booklet called a Lectionary which will tell you what they are (again, ask at a Christian bookshop, or ask me for a list of readings). You could decide you’d like to read through a book of the Bible (I suggest starting with one of the gospels). In this case, you might like to make sure that your Bible has section headings added to the text, and read one of them at a time.

A good way to begin, though, is with one of the many series of Bible reading notes which you can get (yes, Christian bookshop again!).  Look through a few and decide which one is going to suit you best. These notes will suggest a Bible passage, and give you some background, a few thoughts on it and often a prayer or suggestion for something you can do. One of Bishop Tom Wright’s books on ‘the Bible for everyone’ would give you the same sort of material.


Getting going

  However you choose a passage, set aside a few minutes to read and pray with it. First sit comfortably and let yourself rest. Then pray that God will help you to hear what he wants to say, and read the passage slowly and carefully. Try to be aware of your thoughts and feelings as you read it. Take a moment just to let it sink in, and to think about what it says.

  If you’re using notes, now is the time to read them, and give yourself a bit more time to absorb what they tell you or suggest to you. (You don’t have to agree with them!) Try to decide what God wants you to do and to pray as a result of the passage, and ask his help to do it.

  Now turn to the part of your prayer which is about speaking (see the last couple of articles) and let what you’ve read shape what you pray.  Keep going with it, and before long you’ll be amazed at how much of the Bible you come to understand, and at how God helps you to pray as a result.





TAKE TIME

Take time to be still, to look, to hear and to see God in creation. Think of new ways of being church to your neighbours. New ways of reaching out by picking up the phone and saying hello are you alright do you need help, are you coping.


God of healing,

Surround us with your love 

as together we negotiate the complexities of coronavirus.

Guide us all as we seek to support one another. 

Help us to be attentive to the lonely, the isolated, 

the fearful and those who are ill.

Mindful of the geographical isolation of many rural communities, 

we pray for everyone involved in the effective provision of food, 

medical supplies and pastoral care.

In the name of Jesus Christ, who walks alongside us in our difficulties.

Amen






Villages websites:


BARRINGTON - barringtonvillage.btck.co.uk

DOWLISH WAKE - dowliswake.com

KINGSTONE - kingstoneparish.org

STOCKLINCH - stocklinch.org.uk 

SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP - sheptonbeauchamp.org.uk





Selected proofreading mistakes from large-circulation newspapers

Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says

Miners Refuse to Work After Death

War Dims Hope for Peace

Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges

Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge

Kids Make Nutritious Snacks

Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead

 

From Bramshaw, Landford and Plaitford Church notices

A talk on drugs will be given at the next Mothers' Union meeting. This will be followed by a bring and buy sale.


Don't miss the Young Wives' Victorian Evening next month. It will be a fun night and some of the women will wear clothes.

 

Parish of Harnham Magazine

We are delighted to announce that the youth group has raised almost £500 for drug abuse.


Correction: The following typo appeared in our last bulletin: 'Lunch will be gin at 12:15.' Please correct to read '12 noon.'


Any church member over 18 is welcome on our new lay ministry programme. It requires minimal training and time: just six weekly classes of about 200 hours each Tuesday night.


The Seniors group will have a picnic on Saturday. Each person is asked to bring a friend, a vegetable, and a sweet, all in a covered dish.


Remember the church jumble sale. We have a gents three-speed bicycle, also two ladies for sale, in good running order.

 

St Thomas Ensbury Park Parish Magazine

Bertha Belch, a missionary, will be speaking tonight at Calvary Memorial Church. Come and hear Bertha Belch all the way from Africa.


Next Sunday's preacher can be found hanging on the notice board in the porch.


We are pleased to note that there has been a change of mind by the Housing Department regarding the name for the new Housing complex for the elderly. 'St Peter's Close' did seem somewhat inappropriate.

Saturday, 30 May 2020

WEB MAGAZINE - July



Rector’s Pages for July: 

HURRAY FOR THE WEB MAGAZINE!
 The Association for Church Editors is pleased to tell us that the Web Magazine has been awarded a Certificate of Achievement in the 2020 competition for magazines using black and white printing, and they have sent the editors a certificate for this. This means that our magazine reached a high standard. We would normally present this as a framed certificate during the AGM, but obviously we are unable to do that this year.  Well done to the Web editorial team!



PRAYER FOR BEGINNERS - Part 2 - Praying for the world
  One of the sides of prayer that we’re often most comfortable thinking about is that of prayer for other people. The traditional name for this is intercession and it’s a vital part of our life as Christians. In the Lord’s Prayer we pray for the world first, and only then for our own needs; this isn’t a bad pattern to keep to in all of our prayers.

What happens when we pray?
  The short answer is that we don’t really know! We know that prayer isn’t meant to be some kind of magic we work on God to make him do what we want. At the same time, Jesus told us several times that we should be persistent and disciplined in praying, to keep going when prayers don’t seem to be answered.
  Perhaps the best way to see it is that prayer is how God somehow allows us to share in his work in the world. When we can’t affect a situation in any other way, we can still share in what God is doing through others. When we have the opportunity to help someone or to make a difference ourselves, then we seek God’s help and strength to do so, trusting that his work through us will somehow lead to more than we would achieve by our own efforts alone.
Often this has as much to do with allowing God to shape our thoughts as it does with ‘getting our prayers right’ in the first place. St Paul in his letter to the Romans says that God the Holy Spirit actually prays to God the Father from within us. When we don’t know what to pray (or even what to think) about a situation, God can take over and include us in his conversation with himself! Prayer for others can be a wonderful but challenging experience if we listen to ourselves and to God as we pray.

How can we pray?
  It’s good to be specific in your prayer, and to stick at it. It might help to have a list of people and situations that you’ll pray for, and refer to it regularly. If there are many things on your prayer list, don’t try to rush through them all every time. Part of this prayer is to concentrate on what you’re bringing to mind and to God, and rushing through things tends to feel a bit like a shopping list! It’s probably better to spread things over a few days or a week – though there may be a few people or situations you’ll want to pray for every day.  There are other parts to prayer, but one way or another it’s good to let yourself be still for a few minutes. First ask the Holy Spirit to help you to pray. You might read a bit of the Bible or use the prayer from the weekly Service at Home leaflets to help yourself to come closer to God. Then just use your list or whatever else is on your mind to ask God to do what’s right and best in each situation – even if what’s best isn’t actually what you yourself would want.
  You don’t need elegant words, or even any words at all – bringing together your focussed concern for others and your trust in God (however weak that feels!) is what matters.

Ideas for prayer
  Start with what matters most to you, whether people, parts of the world or any kind of issue. The more it matters to you, the easier it’ll be to keep praying.
  Then use the news! Whether you read a paper, watch TV news or listen to the radio, take a note (at least mentally!) of anything you’d like to pray for. You could even get into the habit, if it’s quiet when the news is on, of praying as you read, listen or watch. It may affect the way you think about the world.
   Most Christian charities and mission agencies are happy to provide monthly or quarterly prayer lists, to let you know about some of the areas in which they work, and to help to focus your prayers. Contact any you already support by giving, and ask to receive these if you don’t already.

A couple of warnings and an encouragement
  First, don’t be surprised if the answers that come to your prayers aren’t always the answers you would like. God does answer prayer, but not always with a straightforward ‘yes’. Sometimes his answer can be the gift of strength to accept a different situation from the one we would have chosen.
  Second, look out. If you’re praying for a person or a situation, God may challenge you to do something else about it. Be ready to find that you’re meant to be part of the answer to your own prayer!
  Lastly, do talk to others. We all keep learning, and advice from how someone else has found they can pray, may be very useful.


TAKE TIME
Take time to be still, to look, to hear and to see God in creation. Think of new ways of being church to your neighbours. New ways of reaching out by picking up the phone and saying hello are you alright do you need help, are you coping.

God of healing,
Surround us with your love 
as together we negotiate the complexities of coronavirus.
Guide us all as we seek to support one another. 
Help us to be attentive to the lonely, the isolated, 
the fearful and those who are ill.
Mindful of the geographical isolation of many rural communities, 
we pray for everyone involved in the effective provision of food, 
medical supplies and pastoral care.
In the name of Jesus Christ, who walks alongside us in our difficulties.
Amen



THINKING ANGLICANS - An article By Rev’d Gerry Reilly

I hope that the time after coronavirus will be one where the church will begin to see itself as a sign of the presence of God in our community, loving, serving, blessing all in the community irrespective of age, sex, means. Ministry means service, being alongside, suffering with, not offering answers to questions people haven't asked, but encouraging them to ask questions of themselves, their society, their church, and their God. Clergy are primarily disciples, deacons, servants, not functionaries or hierarchy.

People are asking for respect, love, acceptance, a listening ear, real deep healing, and that is what we need to train our ordinands in, not purveyors of gimmicks or easy answers, which make us feel superior and them inferior. 

Jesus made people feel better about themselves, eg.the Samaritan woman, the demon-possessed man who lived in the grave-yards, the blind man in the temple, the sinner-woman who anointed Jesus' feet, etc. The only disgruntled people were the ones who had all the answers and thought they were right and that God must be on their side.
And Jesus did not do away from the synagogues or even the temple; he simply alerted us to their right use.  We need the people at the top to give us the right example: maybe an inversion of the pyramid.


LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL!
We know that many of you have missed being able to go into the church and so we are pleased to announce that we are starting on the road to properly   re-opening our church buildings.

From Monday 15th June some of our churches were open for individual prayer only, by any member of the public.  We are not allowed to hold public acts of worship just yet.

Opening up is welcome but it does create some practical issues and those will shape exactly how/when we open. Of chief concern is keeping everyone safe by making sure that the church does not itself become a cause of transmitting the infection. So the arrangements we put in place are necessarily a balance between opening as much as possible for people and the necessary precautions to keep those who do come in safe.

That balance point is determined by the necessity for cleaning and our capacity to carry it out. The more the church is open, the more cleaning is needed and the shorter the down time to do it in. And then there is the question of who will do the cleaning. Some of our churches will try and manage this on a daily basis; others will try opening one or two days a week; others just one day; some are not able to manage this at all.  The advice we have been given is that preventative cleaning is not necessary if we allow 72 hours between times that the church is open.

SO PLEASE when you visit the church, please observe the usual social distancing rules, use the hand sanitisers, and some churches may restrict the areas that you can access. Please remember that this is for everyone’s safety and to try to prevent the possibility of the virus being spread further. 

There will of course be cleaning, but you should be aware that surfaces such as door handles and seats may not have been cleaned since the previous member of the public came into contact with them.  For this reason we ask that you make use of the hand sanitiser in the church porch before entering and after leaving the church.  No one from the church can be present to monitor things, so we are asking you to STAY ALERT and CONTROL THE VIRUS, please.

This is a first step towards restoring services and we will update you as and when restrictions are further eased.

Rev’d Geoff Wade, Rector/Area Dean     
01460 240 228      gw@winsmoor.plus.com



THEFTS OF LEAD FROM CHURCH ROOFS - LATEST NEWS

Three men have been charged in connection with a series of lead thefts from churches across Somerset.

In a joint investigation with Lincolnshire Police, the three men have been charged with conspiracy to steal between August 2018 and March 2020. The charge partly relates to 11 offences of theft from churches in our force area

Paul Buica, aged 25, of George Street, Birmingham; Constantine Motescu, aged 31, of Sutton Hill, Telford and Laurentiu Sucea, aged 37, also of George Street, Birmingham, will next appear before Lincoln Magistrates’ Court on 11 June.

The thefts connected with this charge in the Somerset area are:

• Church of St Mary, Chesterblade, between 21-28 August 2019
• Church of St Edward King and Martyr, Goathurst, Bridgwater, between 18-19 December 2019
• Church of the Holy Cross, Middlezoy, Bridgwater, between 11-12 February 2020
• St Mary’s Church, Glastonbury, between 14-15 February 2019
• St Mary’s Church, Barrington, Ilminster, between 18-19 February 2020
• St Peter’s Church, Ilton, Ilminster, between 20-21 February 2020
• St Giles’ Church, Bradford on Tone, Taunton, between 26-27 February 2020
• Church of St Andrew and St Mary, Pitminster, between 27-28 February 2020
• St John the Baptist Church, Wellington, between 28-29 February 2020
• St Peter and St Paul’s Church, South Petherton, between 4-5 March 2020
• Church of St Andrew and St Mary, Pitminster, on 9 March 2020


Villages websites:

BARRINGTON - barringtonvillage.btck.co.uk
DOWLISH WAKE - dowliswake.com
KINGSTONE - kingstoneparish.org
STOCKLINCH - stocklinch.org.uk 
SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP - sheptonbeauchamp.org.uk




June's Web Articles




Dear Parishioner:
   
  I hope you are not too confused by the government changes to the coronavirus restrictions which came into effect in the middle of May!  You may be aware that there have been some very minor changes (and they are very minor) to the rules over our closed and locked churches, which in a nutshell means that they are still closed and locked to almost everyone (including me!), except for one or two people who can go inside to check on the building, to say a prayer, etc.  Otherwise, I’m afraid they are still closed and locked to almost all of us.   
  Whilst this is a terrible situation to be in, the government and national church leadership are gravely concerned about the virus re-emerging as restrictions are lifted, which would take us back to where we were in March!  Additionally there has been a very low infection rate in Somerset (and Cornwall) and the authorities aren’t sure whether this is because we are mainly rural and therefore good at social distancing, or if we are still to see the peak of infections and deaths.
  We are probably looking at quite a lengthy period before we are able to go back to public worship in the way we used to do.
  So for the time being, it’s business as has become normal for our churches, but as soon as anything changes, I’ll let you know.

Stay safe and well.  

Yours sincerely,

Geoff   


God of healing,
Surround us with your love 
as together we negotiate the complexities of coronavirus.
Guide us all as we seek to support one another. 
Help us to be attentive to the lonely, the isolated, 
the fearful and those who are ill.
Mindful of the geographical isolation of many rural communities, 
we pray for everyone involved in the effective provision of food, 
medical supplies and pastoral care.
In the name of Jesus Christ, who walks alongside us in our difficulties.
Amen.


PENTECOST - WHIT SUNDAY - 31st May
   Pentecost is the day that the church was born. Christ was crucified, rose again, spent thirty days with His disciples, then ascended to heaven. Pentecost immediately followed. For two millennia, Christians have been celebrating the church’s birthday with joy and exuberance. Pentecost Sunday takes place 40 days after Easter Sunday. Originally, Pentecost was a Jewish holiday what was held 50 days after Passover as one of the major Jewish feasts. This is how it all began..

Background of Pentecost Sunday
  Believed to be the oldest feast in the Church, the story of Pentecost dates back to the first century A.D. The feast of Pentecost coincided with the Jewish Feast of Weeks, which occurs 50 days after the Passover (Deuteronomy 16:10). According to Jewish tradition, the Ten Commandments were given to Moses 50 days after the first Passover, which freed the Hebrews from their bondage in Egypt. As the Hebrews settled into Canaan, the feast became a time to honour the Lord for blessing the fruits of their labours. 
  At the time of Jesus, the festival focused on rabbinical law and traditions. Since this Jewish holiday took place at the same time of the Pentecost, many Jewish Christians appropriated its celebration into their Christian commemoration of the coming of the Spirit.

Story of Pentecost
   In John 14:16-18 Jesus tells His disciples that the Holy Spirit would come after Him:  “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you for ever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you. ‘I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you.’ “ 
  The Book of Acts provides us with the starting details and events that took place to bring the church into being.  40 days after Jesus’ death and resurrection, and 10 days after Jesus ascended into heaven, the promise of the Holy Spirit came to be.  120 disciples who had been praying together for 10 days, and then:
  “When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.”  (Acts 2.1-4)
  These events are what started the church. Crowds came to investigate what was going on and Peter spoke to them about Jesus saying:
  “Repent, and be baptised every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to him. (Acts 2:38-39) 
  From the crowds, 3,000 realized the truth of Peter’s words and became followers of Jesus. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit came and resulted in tongues, prophecy, miracles, salvations, and the birth of countless churches, worldwide.

Villages websites:

BARRINGTON - barringtonvillage.btck.co.uk
DOWLISH WAKE - dowliswake.com
KINGSTONE - kingstoneparish.org
STOCKLINCH - stocklinch.org.uk 
SHEPTON BEAUCHAMP - sheptonbeauchamp.org.uk



From the Church Registers

4th May  Joyce Brice, 85 years; one of the last residents of Barrington to be born and live their whole life in the village.  A graveside funeral service with a few of her nearest and dearest, at Barrington Church.



Prayer for beginners: Part 1 (And we’re all beginners...)

   Prayer is a basic part of life as a Christian.  We pray in church, at home, together, on our own.  We offer thanks to God, ask his forgiveness when we get things wrong, pray for people we care about and much more.  Often we pray ‘on the spur of the moment’, responding to situations as we meet them. Choosing to pray in a disciplined way, though, is a step further in life with God.
  There are lots of patterns of prayer which we can use, and I’ll try to write a bit about some of them over the coming months.  One thing is vital if you’re going to build a pattern of prayer – time.  It doesn’t need to be a lot, but you need to set aside at least a few minutes regularly, and to make yourself do it – even if that means leaving some other things undone for the moment.
  Get yourself comfortable, and don’t feel that you need to rush straight into praying.  Often it helps to spend a few moments being still and breathing deeply to let your mind slow down a bit.
  Then comes the praying part.  If you’re trying to get started in this, why not use the prayer Jesus taught us?  It’s both a wonderful prayer in itself and a great pattern for our own prayers.

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.  
And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

  From early on in the church, it’s been recommended that we stop to pray this prayer at least three times a day – on rising, at mid-day and in the evening. Try praying it slowly and thoughtfully this way for a few days.
  Then take a bit longer, and perhaps once a day, stop after each line to think and pray about the kind if things the prayer mentions.  So after ‘Our Father in heaven’ just take a moment to think about God – what do you believe he is like? Ask him to help you to know.  After ‘Hallowed be your Name’, think of three things to praise and thank God about. Think through what each line of the prayer means, and spend a few moments praying about those things.
Try this for a week, and see how you feel about prayer then!





SUNDAY SERVICES IN CHURCH

  The Archbishop’s of Canterbury and York have decreed that there will be no public worship in Church of England Churches until further notice.  All our churches are closed and there are no services within their walls.

  A weekly service sheet is sent out by the Rector every Friday morning, which has readings, prayers, and a short reflection; the idea behind this is that we can all join together in prayer on Sunday (or throughout the week!), using the same material.  Though we cannot meet physically, we can do so spiritually.  “The Lord is here; his spirit is with us”