From the Sanctuary
Harvest, quite rightly, has been a celebration of God’s blessings and goodness to us. It is a time, with gratitude, to take stock of that with which we have been provided; to appreciate, with awe and wonder, the beauty (and chaos) of creation – which helps us to appreciate the ability, and mystery, of the Creator more than perhaps we did before. God’s fingerprint is on all of creation – even us! Just What/Who is it that can ‘bring about’ such magnificence – yet is able to live in intimate relationship with us, so much so that we matter, and are valued and supported (whether we realise it or not)? It is beyond expression and comprehension – yet S/He isn’t. S/He is able to be ‘felt’, glimpsed, is tangible, and knowable – but not definable and able to be captured totally. Wow!
Harvest, too, is a time to reflect on the fact that growth in Creation is often enabled by offering the right conditions (water, sunlight, temperature, terrain). The same is true for us. If we are offered the right conditions of being loved, respected, being relationally-met and valued, we can grow towards our Divine potential – ‘to become’ who we are meant to be. However, as in nature, our growth is often enhanced when we add a moderate amount of manure! Too much manure kills nature, as it can do us. Often we think of our ‘mistakes’ and ‘regrets’ as things that we wish hadn’t happened (‘If I could turn the clock back…’ ‘If I had my time again…’). Yet, that manure often offers immeasurable quality to our lives, once we can get, and see, beyond the destructiveness. Those damaging experiences motivate some: to help others; to offer a quality of relationship to others that was never given to them; to set up organisations that support; to offer a quality of empathy to fellow ‘strugglers’ – all of which enriches the lives of those that they encounter, enhances their life, and brings about a better quality of existence for humankind. It is the notion of ‘the wounded healer’.
So, at this time of Harvest, may we see life through a lens of appreciation for ALL that we experience, and have experienced. May we put down our burdens of guilt and self-condemnation, and see ourselves – with awe and wonder – as part of God’s creation; and see our experiences as ‘interesting’, as something to learn from, and as the base from which we can be Christ in the world. May we learn to see value in our ‘manure’, and see ourselves as having grown from it towards fulfilling our Divine-potential.
Wishing you every blessing,
The high point of this month’s events will be the Congregation Council Meeting which will, for the first time, be held on Zoom on Sunday, 18th at 6pm. We realise that not everyone will be able to join with us but if you have a “smart” phone, able to connect to the Internet, then you should be able to download the application. We hope that as many of you as possible will take part. One of the items on the agenda is the vote for a new church committee member and if you feel that you would like to be considered, would you please let Br Peter know by 5pm on 11th October AT THE VERY LATEST. Nominations during the meeting will not be possible. Anonymous voting is possible so we should know which candidate(s) has/have been successful (in the event of a tie).
A new report compiled by the Child Poverty Action Group and the Church of England has found that the Coronavirus has left low-income families struggling with a significant deterioration in living standards and high stress levels. It is all the more important, therefore, that our Food Hamper Project carries on their good work in feeding the needy in our local community. Thank you for your generous Harvest donations which will be so gratefully used by Christine’s team in the coming weeks and months.
Did you know that most churches who used digital channels during lockdown, in order to keep in touch with their congregations, found that their favourite platform was Zoom? A recent survey by Ecclesiastical found that Zoom was used by 78%; Skype by 12%, and other platforms, including WhatsApp, by 8%. Nearly one third of churches who used digital channels have also reported an increased attendance at their virtual services. That has led to some 38% of churches saying that they would continue to use digital channels, even now that churches are physically open again.
What’s on in October
|Morning Worship with
Holy Communion led by
|Church Committee meeting via Zoom
|Moravian Women’s Association meeting
|Lancashire District Conference
Congregation Council meeting via Zoom
|Morning Worship led by Br Peter
|Morning Worship led by Sr Susan Flint
Please note that the above arrangements may be cancelled due to changes in lockdown procedures. This website will provide information on any alterations.