From the Associate Vicar…

Clergy

Trinity Sunday is upon us. A final Sunday of wearing white before we enter the weeks of green as we move into “Ordinary Time”.

To set the tone for the next twenty odd weeks of the Church’s year we are invited to engage in the many ways God interacts with us – the many ways in which we experience God. God as giver of life, God who sustains us, God who transforms us!

Plenty of food for thought for the next few weeks.

This year, the next few weeks aren’t quite so ordinary for our parish. Steve will be ordained priest next week on Wednesday and will celebrate his first Eucharist on Thursday at St Nicholas’. We wish him well for this exciting week and next step in his ministry.

Next Sunday we will also be celebrating St Barnabas’ Patronal Festival with a Parish Eucharist. It’s a special one as well – 60 years of serving the community in Pound Hill. At the service we will conclude our anniversary appeal and give thanks for the many gifts we have received. There is still time to pledge – up until the service – if you haven’t done so already. Cheques should be made out to Worth PCC. Please also join us for the Big Lunch after the service to which we would like you to also invite your neighbours to share in our celebrations.

Hopefully we can gain in confidence that in God we find a place where we are able to flourish. A confidence worth sharing with those we meet.

James

Pewsheet for 24th May 2015 – Pentecost

Pewsheets

Click here to see this week’s pewsheet.

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The Rector Writes…

Clergy

The feast day of St Matthias, whom we hear about in the first reading today, falls on 14th May.  This year it was displaced a day (transferred in liturgical parlance) because that day was Ascension Day (a gold star for those that noticed the mis-spelling on the posters last week!) – Thursday last week.

Ascension Day is one of the nine “principal feasts” in the Church’s calendar and is the only one that can’t be moved to a Sunday which means that, given the pressures of work etc, it is often not observed as fully as the others (although the Roman Catholic Church has transferred it to a Sunday for just that reason).  We celebrated the feast in a service of Eucharist with hymns at St Nicholas.  The Day marks a crucial element in our Christian story as it celebrates Jesus being with his Father, at his right hand, making intercession for us.  In Christopher Wordsworth’s phrase, “man with God is on the throne”.

It falls 40 days after Easter and there used to be a practice in some places of extinguishing the Paschal (Easter) candle in the service on that day.  Common Worship, however, makes it clear that it is Pentecost (next Sunday) that marks the end of the great 50 days of Eastertide.  It is after Pentecost that we turn to ‘ordinary time’ (and take green as the liturgical colour).  The nine days between Ascension and Pentecost have a particular character of prayer and preparation to celebrate the outpouring of the Spirit – preparing us in our own day (and way and place) to be open to the power of that same Spirit.  This week please pray especially for the launch of the Diocesan Strategy next Sunday, in which we shall all share.

Anthony

Pewsheet for 10th May 2015

Pewsheets

Click here to see this week’s pewsheet.

Tip: If this, or any other, PDF document opens at too large a size, here’s what you do:

  1. Open Adobe Reader, for example, by opening a *.pdf document you have on your computer.
  2. From the Edit menu, click Preferences.
  3. With Page Display selected in the left hand list of Categories, on the right hand side of the window, choose a Page Layout and Zoom level that suits you, for example Single Page and Fit Page as shown here:Preferences
  4. Now any time you open a PDF, it will open at this zoom level.

The Curate Writes…

Clergy

From Sunday when Shirley and Mark (who were both baptised) and Caroline and Sam were all confirmed by Bishop Mark at a moving ceremony at Worth Abbey to the events of the General Election on Thursday, it has been quite a week in many ways.
I believe that our readings today offer an insight into both.

In the reading from Acts, Peter realises that the Holy Spirit is being poured out to everyone and our Gospel reading tells us of a love that loves one another in the sacrificial and abundant way of Jesus Christ.
It is this pouring out of the gift of the Holy Spirit that Shirley, Mark, Caroline and Sam experienced on Sunday as Bishop Mark placed his hands on their heads. It is the receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit, that is open to all that then prompts us, and gives us strength to love one another just as Jesus loved us.

As a New Home Group met in Maidenbower Vicarage this week for the first time, as the Pilgrim Course and Confirmation Group merged, both Liz and I could feel that love for one another as we celebrated the events of Sunday. This love also prompts some brave individuals to express that love for one another by seeking to serve as Members of Parliament.

As I write we have just learnt that Henry Smith has been re-elected as our MP. In his service for Crawley, Henry will be making sacrifices as he continues to serve us and we must uphold him and his family in prayer. We must also pray for those who offered to serve but were unsuccessful and who must now discern their futures. We think especially of Noreen and Geoff’s son, Chris.

Steve

The Rector Writes…

Clergy

Alleluia! Christ is Risen.

This Sunday is one bursting with activity – like the vine branches in our gospel reading bearing much fruit. It is a joy to be welcoming Bishop Geoffrey back to the 9.45 service at St Nicholas and for Canon Christine as his deacon for that service. Her recent installation as a Canon of Chichester recognises the contribution she has made to ecumenism and theological education.

Their visit reminds us of the way in which we, both as individuals and as a Christian community in this place and time, are branches connected with others and abiding in the one true vine. We are each called to bear fruit but also to rejoice in the fruit borne by other branches. As the Nic’s congregation gathers for the monthly all-age worship service at St Nicholas this morning we give thanks for the life that congregation draws from the Messy Church initiative at St Barnabas – and rejoice at the plans developing to have Nic’s on another Sunday in the month too and start a new Messy Church service in Maidenbower.

They’re the kind of examples of our common life that featured in the encouraging visit Archdeacon Fiona made to the parish last week as part of the review of ministry in Crawley and Horsham. The gospel reading also reminds us that fruit-bearing branches need to be pruned in order to stay healthy – something that applies in each of our spiritual lives as well as our common life. No one said it was easy! But, again, we can see the fruit in occasions like this afternoon’s baptisms & confirmations at Worth Abbey (by Bishop Mark) do, please, pray for the 16 candidates and   especially the 12 candidates prepared by Steve and myself.

Anthony