Shepton Beauchamp

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Michael's Message - April 2008

An occasional letter from the Vicar, letting you know what’s happening in our village church.

March has been a full and fun month with lots of activities and services leading up to Easter.

Mothering Sunday saw lots of people of all ages come along to church to celebrate all that Mothers do for us: and it wasn’t just children bringing Mum along. Many older people amongst the congregation came to remember their mums who have passed on or, where there were people who have not had particularly good relationships, this was a time to forgive, forget and move on. Lead by Joan Kennedy, this was a gentle and relaxed service for everyone.

Palm Sunday ….. what can I say ….. not the most traditional service I’ve ever lead but, with the help of Father Mark (a RN Chaplain) and some donkeys, the church was full of people and filled with happiness, laughter and fun. Remembering Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem at the start of Holy Week, we re-enacted his journey on the back of a donkey by processing around the church with two of Sarah Bucks rescue donkeys, everyone carrying palm crosses or waving palm branches. Then back inside for a very meaningful sermon by Fr Mark and his two lovely young assistants (!!) and an act of Communion.

Holy Week: as an addition to our usual weekly assemblies in school, Joan devised a daily re-enactment of the story of Jesus’ last days for the children from the school and playgroup, and a number of parents turned up each day as well. Each day Joan told part of the Gospel Story whilst the senior children acted the part of the characters and the younger ones joined in as the crowds and spectators. You could see the seriousness in the children’s faces, but they went away with much more understanding of what actually went on and how difficult it must have been for all involved in the original story.

When What & Who - April @ St. Michaels

6th April

10.00am Family Service with Joan Kennedy

Thirty minutes of worship, music and stories, designed for those young of heart or of years (or both!) All ages catered for in this relaxed and gentle service.

6th & 27th April

11.15am Sung Mass with the Vicar

This style of this service harks back to mediaeval times but died out during after the Civil War when the Puritans implemented a very austere form of worship and living. It was brought back to our village by Father Stuckey-Coles in the middle of the nineteenth century when the Oxford Movement revived this style of worship to reflect the hope and glory of Heaven in our praise and worship of God. A reverent and respectful service, but with a hint of humour and a focus on the practical realities of life as reflected in Our Lord’s word and mission.

13th April

11.15am Sung Mass with Rev’d Nigel Whinney

Same style of worship as above; Nigel brings with him, a lifetime of experience as a Pilot in the Fleet Air Arm, as Seaman in small ships and as a Commanding Officer in operational area. He leads worship with a gentle authority and a quiet confidence and focuses on making this service meaningful to the modern world.

20th April

10.00 Family Eucharist with the Vicar

Jesus shared the Last Supper with his friends and the Family Eucharist is the means by we offer his sacrament to our village. Different in style from the Sung Mass, this is the service for all who are confident in their faith, exploring or questioning. Jesus invites you to his supper: come & find out what it means to you.

Fr. Geoff

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