Welcome to St Vigor’s Church, Stratton on the Fosse and St John’s Church, Chilcompton.
Weekend of 4th-5th April 2020
We have had a busy week coming to terms with the lockdown regulations and working out how we can worship at home and serve our community. The Parish Council have generously invited me to their meetings (three times a week) and we have joined forces with them to offer help to those in need of assistance in the village. They are doing a super job of marshalling volunteers and co ordinating a response to those who ask for help. It is good that we should work together, I think. We have also given our stock of protective gloves to Fosse House Nursing Home to help them as they care for vulnerable adults in our benefice.
Do pray for our school who are doing a magnificent job in difficult circumstances. The staff are working on a rota basis to feed children who have free school meals and offer care to those who are part of the family of key-workers in the community. Attendance varies day to day but they have been working with up to 30 children daily this week. In our weekly chat and emails, I have been sharing faith-based resources with Mr Chorley to help the children explore both the Easter Story and activities to help the children explore how a person of faith might reflect on our current circumstances. Although in good spirits, he tells me that they have been asked to remain open over the Easter Holiday to care for these children, which will be quite a challenge. Do hold the staff in your prayers.
I am delighted to share with you an invitation to join together for Morning Prayer via Zoom on Palm Sunday (5th April) and on Easter Morning (12th April), both at 10.30am. The service sheet for Palm Sunday can be found here. A recording of the sermon will be available via the link toward the bottom of this letter before the service. If you would like to join us on Zoom and worship together, simply click on the link detailed below. It would be good to do this on Saturday some time, to give yourself time to familiarise yourself with the set up. When you return to it on Sunday morning, at the appropriate time you will be added to the meeting. I am hoping it will be as simple as it sounds and might open up new horizons for us to worship together in weeks to come.
To join Palm Sunday's Zoom meeting, click here. Please enter the following details when requested:
Meeting ID: 814 328 055
You can try clicking on the link above at any time before the meeting starts, as that may help you if Zoom is new to you. It will simply show that the meeting has not started yet, and you can leave. Your browser may ask you to download and run Zoom if it is unable to connect directly, and this may work better for you anyway. In either case, you will not be required to either sign in or register with Zoom to simply join a meeting. You can click here for a bit more information on Zoom. If you scroll down a bit to the section headed "Joining the meeting or webinar" there is a very short video clip to watch on the subject.
A new invitation will be generated for Easter Sunday and will be communicated next week.
Please do ask for help if you feel you need it: we are all in the process of working out how we can make the most of technology in these challenging days. Thank you once again for the gracious way in which you have all been mindful of caring for one another: do keep it up!
Wishing you every blessing. I am hopeful of seeing you on Sunday morning.
Sunday 5th, Palm Sunday
Morning Service, 10:30am
The readings were from Mathew 21: 1-11 and 1 Thessalonians 5: 1-12
If you were not able to join with us on Zoom, you can still listen to Esther's sermon, below, as you follow the service sheet.
Coming soon,.. details for our Easter Service.
Sermons from previous Sundays are available via SoundCloud below.
Pandemic by Lynn Ungar
What if you thought of it
as the Jews consider the Sabbath—
the most sacred of times?
Cease from travel.
Cease from buying and selling.
Give up, just for now,
on trying to make the world
different than it is.
Sing. Pray. Touch only those
to whom you commit your life.
And when your body has become still,
reach out with your heart.
Know that we are connected
in ways that are terrifying and beautiful.
(You could hardly deny it now.)
Know that our lives
are in one another’s hands.
(Surely, that has come clear.)
Do not reach out your hands.
Reach out your heart.
Reach out your words.
Reach out all the tendrils
of compassion that move, invisibly,
where we cannot touch.
Promise this world your love–
for better or for worse,
in sickness and in health,
so long as we all shall live.
–Lynn Ungar 11/3/20
We pray for all those who are suffering because of the coronavirus, may they know your healing power.
When we are afraid for ourselves and our loved ones, give us your strength and courage.
When we feel alone and isolated, reassure us with a sense of your presence.
Give wisdom to those in authority and may our community work together for the good of all.
We give thanks for those who care for others and ask you to bless them in all they do.
We ask this in the name of Jesus, healer and physician.
Prayer Request & Help Desk
Are you feeling isolated and anxious because of the coronavirus?
We want to assure you that the church community remembers and prays for those who are in any kind of need.
If you would like support please fill in the form below and we will get back in touch soon.