Parish Weekly Update – 15th March 2021

Dear all,

I do hope that as the days are getting even longer so are all your hopes and dreams!

Our Mothering Sunday weekend has been wonderful. So many ribbons and messages of love and things for all those who care for us.

The railings  round the yew tree look wonderful.

Chris Gardner has done us proud and there are still ribbons and daffodils just coming out of bud there so do please come in and take some.

60ish Lent and Easter bags went out this week to our CAMEO and beyond people.

They included plants, palm crosses, Easter eggs, toiletries, hot cross bun and butter and jam and leaflets and treats as well.

My thinking behind that was that we had done so much for our younger families over Half Term (I have now secured the funding for Easter from Edsential) that I was feeling a little unbalanced (!) and needed to shore up our older people as well…everyone was so pleased and happy to get them.

Thank you, Jean, for organising it all so well.

The comments I am getting from so many of you about the Sunday mornings we have in church that are live streamed, are so appreciative of all we are doing, especially Malcom and the organ music and Gail and Atie and usually one other from the choir (we can only have three at the moment, singing) and it all enhances our worship so much.

I am so loving all the preaching I am doing (preaching is my lifeblood, despite dodgy quality sometimes) at the moment, but we are all missing Mark so much. His shielding finishes on 31st March when he will be back with a vengeance….!

There were only eight people who said they preferred a 9.15 am service so, for the moment, we will stay the same at 10.00 am.

This has been discussed by the Wardens, myself and a couple of others so far, it will then go to Staff and then to the PCC when the wider picture has emerged fully.

So many strands to be woven in. But this parish is truly in good heart thus far.

The chaos for many families as a result of COVID in our community is real and tangible and overwhelming.

We are doing so much though, this last week I have, because of your generosity, been able to sort through so many problems as I am now getting direct referrals form the NHS Wellbeing Officer working with Eastham GP practices. I have a group around me I can delegate to.

ON 23rd March there is a National Day of Remembrance.

We have 80 names of people whose funerals I have done who would normally have been invited to our Memorial services. Ray Bonnard, who looks after our Bereavement Ministry, has suggested that we mark the occasion in church with names being on the screen as a rolling presentation with music and people can come and pay their own respects. They are being contacted as we speak. Thank you so much, Ray.

Our Lent Challenge this year is for MIND, the mental health charity…is much needed at the moment.

There is a collection each Sunday and Wednesday in church but you can also give on our Online giving page but mark it for MIND. Thanks everyone.

So, another week ahead.

I have no idea when I wake up what I will be faced with and, at times, I find it so sad and incomprehensible.

But God is literally just one step ahead of me.

All I need is to trust, rest in HIm, believe in his Word and rise to the challenges, and each one of you , your prayers and love and donations of any kind, are keeping me holding on.

Holy Week and Easter are now taking shape. More details next week.

My love to you all once again. I am here for you in any way and at any time

Bethxx