#273: The Legendary Bus to Petts Wood (Google tells me)

(Flowers at Ormesby Hall, Cleveland)

Hello again- welcome back to anyone who has been gadding around, congratulations to everyone who received hard-earned exam results this week, ‘and breathe’ to Secondary School staff who have been waiting so long for this week, and have a great time to those who are packing to go away. Here is the news…

Ideas and thoughts

If you have any thoughts on how to make people feel more comfortable in our Churches, or if there is anything we can change or finesse to make it possible for you to come back to Church in person, then please speak to a Warden or a member of the Clergy.

We would like some people to offer to receive the St Paul’s prayer list each Friday so that more people can pray through it and pray for the people named outside our main services since prayer is so much the heart of everything we do- can you email Louise if you would be willing to go on the email list she is putting together? Thanks.

Tithings Groups are the centre of pastoral care and mutual support at St Paul’s- has yours met recently? Are you in? if not, let Louise know in the office and she will put you in touch with a group which has a space and which will suit you perfectly.

Help! Does anyone know where the Coffee and Chat puzzle carrier has gone? They need it and miss it. Thanks. Amnesty in place, no questions asked…

This Sunday

This Sunday St Paul’s and St Nick’s are keeping the feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Gospel reading is the Magnificat from Luke 1.46-55- do please read it through a few times before the service to get it into your bloodstream and to start you getting excited about it. The hymns at St Paul’s are all chosen for the festival- some of them are not immediately hummable but they are all either easy to pick up or set to well-known tunes you will definitely be able to whistle. And please remember that the seats at the back of St Paul’s are for those who want/need to continue to socially distance so do please respect people’s preferences.

Volunteers needed

As things return to some level of routine it is a really good moment to think about offering to help out with some of the things that are starting up again. If you would like to find out more about any of those, or if you would to offer time without knowing precisely which area you want to get involved with, then do speak to a member of the clergy, who would be delighted to chat to you. For example,

outdoors, helping to maintain the Churchyard, either on a Saturday with the rest of the team or on any day of the week to fit in with your other commitments

volunteering as a School Governor, especially at St Paul’s or St Cecilia’s (the new School opening in September 2022 on Matthew’s Green Road)- you need to be comfortable in meetings and committed to education and the community

mentoring students in local Secondary Schools with Soulscape, who will offer training and support

or why not volunteer to do a bit more around the things you are already doing- like being a sidesperson, or helping to serve coffee, or doing a reading or leading the prayers or helping with J-Club or being a server or joining the choir or…. the opportunities are myriad and rich and exciting!

A poem for the weekend, from John Sutton

Praying

by Mary Oliver

It doesn’t have to be

the blue iris, it could be

weeds in a vacant lot, or a few

small stones; just

pay attention, then patch

a few words together and don’t try

to make them elaborate, this isn’t

a contest but the doorway

into thanks, and a silence in which

another voice may speak.

A joke for the weekend

I was very excited to tell my friends that I had completed the skylight in my flat.

They were all delighted for me- in fact, the only people who weren’t were the people who live on the floor above me.

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