Ramblings from the Rectory ...
Our granddaughter who lives in Buckinghamshire is going to be confirmed this September, on the 24 of the month, and her Mum asked me if I knew of a suitable book that might help her.
I do have one by Margaret Withers and I eventually found it. It's called, 'Welcome to the Lord's Table.' So I shall take it to her so that she can borrow
But it started me thinking as to how we welcome people to the Lord's table and in fact how welcoming are we as churches to the communities that we serve? There are many ways in which the church can be there for the community in offering Sunday services so people have the opportunity to regularly worship together, but also in being available for weddings and baptisms and funerals, etc.
But there may be many more things that you can think of where the church could be more available to the community...and so if you have an idea, I would love you to share it with me.
Liz Hall gave us such an idea last year in that she told us all about the Bishop's walk that took place 160 years ago, this year, and so we celebrated this event in June...please see the separate article about this. But it gave us a reason to get together as a community with the village and the school and the church, and an enjoyable day was had by all who were involved in this.
So do let me know if you have an idea that you think might help us to come together more for the good of the community.
Jesus talks about community when he talks about the Body of Christ. [See 1 Page 3 Corinthians, chapter 12.] We are told that each of us has a unique gift to give and that each one of us can play our part in building up the body. The ear can only do what the ear can do, but it is just as important as the eye, which can only do what the eye can do. Everyone can be important in helping a community to grow.
And if you are someone who doesn't go out very much, you may say, what can I do? But your prayers could be the best thing that you can give.
Please pray for our school, for our churches, for our Messy Church initiative and for all who live in our villages and at the Enham Trust.
Prayer has been our special focus this year in 2017, and we would welcome any of you to please help us by praying for our whole community here in Smannell and Enham and Little London. You could also pray for all the parishes of the Pastrow Benifice, as we try to grow more united as a team, including the villages of Hurstbourne Tarrent, Vernham Dean, Linkenholt and Faccombe.
One particular event for your prayers in August please, would be our Summer Holiday Messy Church event in Hatherden Church on the 8 August, from 10.30 to 12.30. Do join us if you are a family with children, or if you would like to come and help, you would also be most welcome. But your prayers would be especially appreciated too please. Thank you.
Whatever you get up to in this holiday month of August, whether you are away or at home, I pray that this will be a month of blessings for you and that you will enjoy some rest and recuperation, and time simply to be.
Rev. Val Gagen