Church of England Diocese of Bristol St. Martin Knowle

A message from Rev Becky Waring... 13th November

13 Nov 2020, 6 p.m.
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Dear sisters and brothers

Apparently today, 13 November 2020, is World Kindness Day, a day to particularly focus on small acts of kindness, or showing appreciation, or reaching out to others. Others have noticed that as today is Friday 13th in the year 2020 it might be the most challenging day of all!

I'm thankful that as Christians we don't need to be given a day to remind us to be kind, nor do we believe in the bad luck superstition that is attached to a particular date. We hope, don't we, that we live our lives generously and graciously, and that we recognise times of blessing and of challenge as the very nature of life. Indeed in Psalm 23, which was the Psalm of the day on Wednesday, St Martin's day, the Psalmist speaks of the green pastures and the valley of the shadow of death. We know the stuff of life.

We reflected this week, in celebrating the feast of St Martin on Wednesday, on what it would be like to live with an approach to engage in "small great things", where we might join in with expressing God's love in ways that may not be recognised or celebrated, or even noticed, but where we know we are responding to a message of love that is for each of us, and for God's world. Maybe this is a small act of kindness, maybe it's holding our tongue when we might feel a tendency to join in with something negative, maybe it's offering eye contact and a smile when out for a walk, in the attempt to show real human contact in a time when we are again locked down and for many, locked in.

A great act, which is small and mighty, is to pray. At the start of this second lockdown, the Archbishops called on all of us who profess a faith to pray, and to specifically do this for our Nation at 6pm each day. You will have seen details of this in last week's email. Every day at 6pm, as an encouragement and to spread the message, we are posting a prayer on our Facebook page. We are also trying to encourage a season of prayer by providing a spiritual resource to support you at home. With simple liturgy for Morning, Evening and Night prayer, scripture and psalm suggestions, and points of reference to join in with worship on the radio, television or on social media, we hope this will enable you to pray and feel connected spiritually to the corporate body of Christ. The resource will be emailed electronically on Monday, and there are also paper copies available if you would like

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to receive it. Please contact Chris Dursley if you would like a paper, rather than electronic, copy.

We are also sending out an audio prayer every Thursday for you to join in with at any point during your day. At 5 minutes in length, you may like to listen and pray during your lunch break, as you walk, or even just before you go to sleep.
Finally, from Monday 23rd November, we will hold a service of Morning Prayer on zoom at 9am, for anyone who would like to join in. Details for this are to follow, but please speak to either me or Laura if you'd like to find out more.

However, wherever or whenever you pray, let's continue to be people of prayer: for our nation, for our community, for our loved ones, even for ourselves. Not because one specific day has been allocated, or to prevent 'bad luck', but because it's the very nature of our relationship with God.

I continue to pray for you and for our community.

With love in Christ, Becky