We hope you have had a good week this week? The days are lengthening with hours of sunshine and bright light which is so encouraging.. although the wind has been rather chilly! Nigel and I went for 'refreshing' walk across the fields today and loved seeing the new leaves, and catkins on the trees with blossom emerging on a few trees. A farmer was out ploughing his field and the sheep in another field gave us a rather curious look as we stopped to chat to them.. no sign of lambs in their field yet, but I was delighted to see young lambs in a field on my way back from Chalgrave the other day. Spring is clearly on the way.
This week has been busy, with the re-scheduling of weddings and also starting to organise baptisms (how wonderful!) Sadly, some wedding couples are re-arranging dates for the second or third time but we hope that this time, their dates will be safe and their weddings will be very special occasions. We are also actively considering how and when we can practically return to church for Sunday services. We are hoping that each church will be open for services on Palm Sunday and for Easter Sunday but this will be confirmed as all becomes clear.
Toddington will host a 9.30am service next Sunday for Mothering Sunday and Chalgrave will host a 9.30am service the following week, in addition to the usual Harlington 9.30am service.
This Sunday the services are as follows:
The Recorded service - kindly recorded by the Quintet Readers: Robert Johns, Jon Denman and Stephen Farmer this week - to give us a breather so we could focus on this week's funeral services. We offer our grateful thanks to them and also to Nicholas for providing much of the music this week.
The Recorded service can be accessed on the link below or via church Facebook page. https://www.harlingtonchurch.org/worship-services-2/this-sundays-service
Service in Church:
Morning Worship 7th March at 9.30am Harlington Church
Online services via live zoom link:
11am Quintet Morning worship by zoom. All welcome. Zoom access link available on poster attached.
6pm 'The Upper Room' worship with time of singing, Lent reflections and prayers. All Welcome. Zoom access link available from Rev'd Linda.
Other key Services and events this week:
The Lent Course: session 2 of God's Story, Our Story: Tuesday evening at 7.30pm by zoom: Access link available from Rev'd Linda.
Harlington Morning Service 10.00am on Wednesday 10th March 2021 by zoom: Access link available from Rev'd Linda.
Information about other events will be circulated as appropriate.. but Nigel and I will not be offering Afternoon Teas this week, and I (Linda) am easing back from mid-week zoom and screen commitments this week, to give my eyes a rest.. and to remind myself that I am part-time really (Nigel and I haven't taken a day off for months). So this week, I am going to take opportunity to ease away from the computer screen and take heed of some words by St Anselm, shared to clergy by Bishop Alan in his Ash Wednesday letter, and again last week:
“Come now … flee for a while from your tasks, hide yourself for a little space from the turmoil of your thoughts. Come, cast aside your burdensome cares, and put aside your laborious pursuits. For a little while, give your time to God, and rest in him. Enter into the chamber of your mind, shut out all things save God and whatever may aid you in seeking God; and having barred the door of your chamber, seek him.”
Other news and prayers:
We hold Revd Stephen Williams in our prayers following this announcement from Bishop Richard on Thursday:
Revd Stephen Williams – Retirement
After thirty-five years as Vicar of Harlington, before which he was Curate at St Paul’s Bedford, Steve is to retire on Tuesday 6th April, 2021. Over the years Steve has been at the heart of village life to which he has brought ministry, leadership, service, teaching and a love of history.
We thank him for this ministry in Harlington and the wider Diocese and wish him well for all that lies ahead as he moves to Herefordshire.
I commend Steve to your prayers as he moves on.
We also hold in our prayers those whose funerals have taken place this week, and their families who grieve:
Patricia Sutton - Toddington, Marian Barton - Toddington, Gerald Gordon - Toddington and Jim Rose - Harlington
We hold you all in our prayers this week and especially our schools as the children return on Monday.
May life treat you well. May you be encouraged. Stay safe and well and we look forward to seeing you soon.
Linda and Nigel