Pentecost - 31st May 2020
As the 'Great Sunday' season comes to an end I hope you all have a blessed and
It is strange (to say the least) to have been absent from our churches for two of the major feasts of the Christian year, but however we feel about being outside the buildings we still worship and if you are feeling the loss and that 'Small it is, in this poor sort, to enrol Thee', please also remember that 'e'en eternity's too short to extol Thee.' (with thanks to George Herbert). As Jesus said, 'God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.’ (John 4:24) - something we can do anywhere. May we all be filled with the Holy Spirit!
Worship from the benefice is available here and a service for Pentecost will be available from 8.30am on Sunday. There are lots of other online services available (here's a list from just this diocese!), including from the Diocese of Oxford and national HQ!
If you are in contact with people who are not online, please do pass on the numbers for the initiatives from the central Church of England and the Diocese of Oxford:
'Daily Hope' offers music, prayers and reflections as well as full worship services from the Church of England at the end of a telephone line on 0800 804 8044 (further details can be found here.)
The Oxford Diocese line for those unable to watch services online is reached via 01865 920930 and, once connected, dial 0 for the full version of the service, or dial 1 for a short version. However - PLEASE NOTE - this line is not free, standard call rates apply. Please remember there will be a few seconds of silence before the service starts.
If you do use some form of online worship, the diocese have asked if you could spare a few minutes just afterwards to complete a short survey. If you could, please follow this link.
Also included in this week's mailing - along with the Weekly Sheet - we have a sermon. Sourced by Douglas, the sermon is derived from two sermons preached by Archbishop Michael Ramsey in Canterbury Cathedral on the Feasts of Pentecost in 1963 and 1973; also from his book ‘The Holy Spirit’, published in 1977.
The Diocese are also providing lots of resources and help, much of which is highlighted in their weekly news mailing, available here.
I am still hoping to broaden the input to our worship. If any of you can help and would be willing to record bits of a service - preferably video but audio would be fine - and then email them to me then I will do the editing. There is a lot to include for Trinity Sunday next week, so if you can offer a reading or a prayer, please let me know (email@example.com) - it will feel more like benefice worship if more are involved in leading parts of it as we haven had in our worship week in, week out.
Please do still encourage others to keep in touch with what is going on by signing up to these updates – just cut and paste the link to them in an email:
Very importantly, if there are any people who you know would like a hard copy of this then please print it off for them or let me know, and I’ll take care of it (whilst keeping physically distant!)
Finally, a final call for those interested in a Bible Study via the Zoom video conferencing website/app to contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) so we know whether this might be of interest.
For now, as always, all the best, God bless, and keep safe
31st May 2020
A Sermon for