Letter from The Rector

Rector’s Letter

The Revd. Esther Smith
The Revd. Esther Smith

Weekend of 17th / 18th April, 2021
Third Sunday of Easter
Luke 24 v 36b-48

Dear Friends,

This Saturday it is with sadness that we will mark the funeral of HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. The bell at St John’s will toll 99 times at midday as a mark of respect and the church itself will be open from midday to 2pm for anyone who wishes to do so, to spend a moment or two in silent, private prayer. Covid-safe restrictions will apply and seats will be cleaned after every visitor.

To avoid the risk of infection we will not hold a Book of Remembrance, but rather as the Palace suggests, we invite anyone who wishes to do so to follow this link and add their condolences to the digital version on the National C of E Website.

Notwithstanding this sad event, the gradual emergence of society from the 3rd National Lockdown seems to be proceeding well and infection rates are once again low in our area. Locally we pray for our neighbouring pubs, cafes, shops and businesses who are finding covid-safe ways of re engaging in trade.

Many of our congregation have had not one but two doses of a vaccine and I am delighted that the PCCs agree that it is time for us to prepare to re-open our churches for worship in person. Services in Person will therefore begin again to celebrate Pentecost on 23rd May, in line with Stage 3 of the Government advice. Covid safe restrictions will apply (as they did before Christmas) until the Government indicates that we are safe to remove them. Please help us to keep each other safe by remaining socially distant and wearing a mask. If you prefer not to venture out just yet, you will be able to join the service via Zoom from St John’s.

This second week of the school Easter holiday has seen lots of families enjoying our Easter Trail in Chilcompton and Lottie sent us this lovely picture of herself and Alfie enjoying the fun.

Please hold all of our young people (and their teachers) in your prayers as they return to school, college and university next week. Our older young people have had a particularly challenging and uncertain academic year. It would be good to pray that they would know God’s love, strength and peace as they enter into exam season and bring to conclusion another academic year.

Our Service of the Word this weekend continues our look at the very first Easter. Peter preaches.

I will look forward to seeing everyone who can join us.

Every blessing,