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April News 2022

13 April 2022

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Reflection from the Rectory
We are not far off from Easter Sunday and all the joy of the resurrection. Our Churches will welcome more worshippers, there will be flowers and Easter eggs, hymns of Joy and triumph as we celebrate Christ’s triumph over death. This allows us to see and understand again the deepest truth of a life with God which is greater than death because it is fuelled by a passionate love of a creator for his creation. It is always a joy to enter again into that deepest of truths that the human heart so easily forgets in the struggles of life.
But there is a journey to the Garden of Resurrection where Mary Magdalen meets the risen Christ. It begins on Palm Sunday, passes through the upper room on Maundy Thursday, Stands by the Cross on Good Friday, is lost in the silent shock during Holy Saturday before it arrives at Easter Sunday.
This journey is enacted beautifully in the church in the services of Holy Week. They offer us an opportunity, after all the Lentern preparations, to arrive with Mary early in the garden on that first day of the week with our hearts in the right attitude. To jump straight into Easter Sunday without the upper room or the agony of the cross is a little like going on a journey through the most magnificent landscapes and choosing to keep our eyes closed until we reach the final destination. We may get to where we are going but we miss so much wonder in our lack of attentiveness to the journey.
This year I invite you all to travel Holy Week more intentionally, to share in all the beautiful
services on offer, to meet and be fed with Jesus in the upper room and to stand at the foot of the cross to share its pain and scandalous message of love. To jump from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday is to miss some of the most important parts of the landscape, which reveal to us the true depth of God’s love.
After two years of a very limited opportunity to experience Holy Week I encourage everyone to journey fully with Jesus, to embrace Holy Week more intentionally. To allow each service to lead you more deeply on the Jesus journey to discover the God who calls your name in love so that on Easter Sunday morning, when we stand with Mary in the garden our hearts can burst our in the full glory of Easter joy.
My love to you all, Chris

‘The Toast Rack’ – next dates
The toast rack is held at St Michael’s. on the first and third Saturdays of each month, from 10 -12 noon. coffee and tea are served, with toast, and biscuits. The April dates are 2nd and 16th, and the May dates are 7th and 21st. Everyone is welcome to meet and chat, No charge is made, but any donations are always welcome.

News from the Diocese Living in Love and Faith The Revd Canon Sharon Potter, our Diocesan Advocate for Living in Love and Faith (LLF) encouraged Synod members to take part in the programme for LLF. The hope is for people in Church of England churches across the country to use the LLF resources to study and pray together. The new resource offers church-wide learning together, listening to one another, and listening to God as part of discerning a way forward for the Church of England in relation to matters of identity, sexuality, relationships and marriage. If you would like to take part please: 1. Register on the Living in Love and Faith Learning Hub to access all the resources. 2. Explore the full range of resources available and if you are a leader in a church, you may like to consider running a group, or using the materials as part of a Lent course. There is also material available designed specifically with young people in mind. 3. Respond Once you’ve explored the materials or been part of an LLF group, complete the online questionnaire or consider responding creatively to make your contribution to discerning what God is saying to the Church. The survey responses must be in by 30 April 2022 but you can send in a written or creative response after this date. To view Sharon's presentation watch her on YouTube here. Any queries please email: The Revd Canon Sharon Potter or telephone 01284 828599 or 07825 086063