#280: How does one apply to be Education Secretary?

Important Notices and News

a) As you may well have heard by now, Charlie the St Paul’s Church Dog sadly died last Sunday. He was always happy to let anyone stroke him and we are all going to miss the thump of his tail on the wooden flooring. Alice and Maurice, our thoughts and prayers are with you- anyone who has ever owned a pet knows what you’re facing up to at the moment and how hard it is to say goodbye. Thank you for sharing Charlie with us.

b) Our Tithings Groups have been a really helpful building block during the last months- now’s a good time to meet together again in real life, or invite a member of the clergy to come along and meet with you, or ask advice on how to kickstart things, or whatever. And if you would like to join a group please speak to Louise in the Office. (Tithings are the Pastoral Care system for St Paul’s and a mutual support group, in essence).

c) PCC is on Monday night- if there is anything you would like to raise about the life of the Church then do please speak to a PCC Member or Richard. Among other things on Monday night, we will be discussing choosing our Charities to support and Safeguarding, as well as how we engage with Living in Love and Faith, the CofE’s conversation around same-sex relationships. The main link is here if you want to find out more: Living in Love and Faith | The Church of England

d) Although progress on repairing the arson damage is annoyingly slow, we do now have permission to get on with making a new banner (which Pauline Wells is leading, and which anyone who would like to help is welcome to be part of) and also initial permission to commission the icon to go on the wall of the organ loft, to the left of Mary, in our prayer area. We can’t actually press Go on it yet but we are hoping to do so in early October- and Julia Stankova, the icon writer, has already bought the wood and is feeling very excited about the whole thing.

e) Here is the latest report from Bishop Hall in Madagascar- enjoy!

f) And here are the notes from the Bible Study and reflection on the Prophets, whish is happening every Tuesday evening, and is open to everyone- do come along!

Forthcoming Attractions and Services

a) Sunday morning sees services at 9.30 (St Paul’s), 10 (Woosehill) and 11 (St Nick’s). If you haven’t tried coming back to Church yet then this would be a great Sunday to try- and the Livestream will carry on at 9.30 and 10, of course.

b) Evensong is back- 6.15 pm at St Paul’s this Sunday, and every 3rd Sunday in the month. Come along, enjoy the hymns and the timeless music and then stay for refreshments as we try again to celebrate Cara’s welcome into the parish after her priesting. 4th time lucky…

c) Nicky Uthwatt’s Funeral

Nicky’s funeral will be held at Woosehill at 11am on Tuesday 21st September after which tea, coffee and cake will be served. The family will attend a cremation at 12:30 before returning to the church. If you can help with either, setting up, clearing away or make a cake please let John or Steve know on stewards@woosehillchurch.org

d) Harvest Lunch Sunday 3rd October for a 1pm start in the St Paul’s Parish Rooms.

We will be serving soup and bread and fruit crumble, please bring your own drinks.

There will be no charge but donations will be gratefully received for the three charities.  We will have the card reader in the Parish Rooms. if you have not cash with you.

So we can have an idea of how much soup and crumbles are needed please could you either email Margaret Davies on margaretanndavies@hotmail.co.uk or let Louise in the office know if you would like to come.

e) The St Frideswide Pilgrimage to Oxford is on the 16th of October ( a Saturday). If you would like to be part of it- it was great fun last time- then please speak to Richard, especially if you would be willing to help plan things. The walks are guided and vary in length between 1.5 miles and 9 miles.

Volunteers Wanted

a) The PCC want to start to use the Diocesan Giving Scheme, which is a more effective and efficient way of donating to Church. Once it is set up it more or less runs itself but we need someone to volunteer to find out how it works, explain it well to the parish and then oversee the transition from the current system to the new one. It would suit someone who wants a job with a finite time commitment. Please speak to Richard or Lyn if you would like to find out more.

b) We would still welcome more volunteers to help plan and/ or lead J-Club. Please speak to Cara or Richard to find out more and to get an application form.

And a poem to finish with, from the John Sutton collection

Tottenham Court Road

by Tyrone Lewis

At the Tottenham Court Road bus stop

just near Primark

a man in a faded blue shirt two sizes too big 

finished kissing a woman.

He then stood back and told her he loved her. 

They let their bus drive on without them.

When he said it

all she could do was stare. 

He stared back and then

her mouth turned into a smile. 

We’d discreetly started to

make a crowd around them,

growing less and less interested in buses.

Readjusting bags so we were comfortable enough

to experience this moment.

We just watched them stand there.

She stared at him like

he was her mother’s homemade cooking. 

Sunday roast.

Light on the vegetables 

but heavy on the meat.

The one her mother

used to make when she was seven 

to tell her everything was going to be okay. 

He stared at her like 

she was the first sunset he saw

at Bournemouth beach;

the night his dad told him he planned to

marry his mum

and asked for his blessing.

They looked double my age. 

He showed it more than her.

Wore clothes that used to fit him years ago. 

Wore them as a memento 

of the man he used to be. His backpack 

hung from his left shoulder, 

its weight forcing him to lean a little. 

She had no backpack anchoring her down 

but leaned with him

so she could mimic his look.

She wore jeans for comfort 

rather than fashion.

Went practical with her bag. 

Saved her style for her face. 

Decorating it with golden earrings 

that demanded to be commented on, 

at least looked at by bystanders, but

everyone else seemed too busy actively 

trying to save this as a memory.

Ignored buses as 29 and 134 

and 24 and 176 drove by.

Our days were less important 

than these two people.

I’ve never been more jealous of a man.

Wished I could wear 

his aging skin.

His brown hair

starting to grey.

Wished I could be his five-foot-nine size. 

Be as

stocky as him,

have those eyes 

in front of me. 

I’ve never been more jealous of a look.

With the ease of her 

doing it.

I don’t know how,

but Tottenham Court Road was silent. 

All of us wishing that maybe we could have

a moment like this 

for ourselves. 

For us, this was special.

For them,

this was probably just a Tuesday.

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