Church of England Diocese of Leeds Settle

1. Newsletter (January 2019)

Newsletter for January 2019 from the Editor

Dear Friends - Happy New Year 2019

By the time we meet together at 10a.m. in St. Alkelda’s on Sunday, January 6th, for our first-Sunday-of-the-month Shared Holy Communion, New Year will have come & gone and Christmas will be over – it’s official!! At least it is in the churches’ calendar because on January 6th, we celebrate the Epiphany, concentrating on the Wise Men / Kings / Magi.

Matthew is the only gospel writer to include their involvement in the events surrounding Jesus’ birth but does not tell us that there were 3 such people, nor that they followed the star, at least not until they got to Jerusalem.

In many countries, much is made of this festival with parades & present giving and the making & eating of a special Kings’ Cake, containing a bean or small figurine representing the Christ child.

There is a Blessing, used especially at Nativity Services, in which it talks about the persistence of the Wise Men: they did not stop searching after discovering that Jesus was not born in a royal palace, which is what they expected. Equally, they were prepared to change their plans when warned by God that it would be dangerous to return to Herod. Dangerous for whom, I wonder?

If you have been following the CofE’s “Follow The Star” series of 12 reflections from Christmas to Epiphany, you will have had the opportunity to think about these events from 2,000 years ago. But what about today and us, as we enter 2019 looking for a new vicar? What are our expectations? What will this person look like? Where will this person lead us? Are we ready to change our requirements and plans if God is showing us that such a change is of Him? Big questions to ask, big decisions to make! May we always be open and ready to hear God’s voice, in one or more of the numerous ways in which He speaks to us.

So, do not be afraid, for I AM with you; do not be dismayed, for I AM your God!” Isaiah 41, v10.

The 3-Parishes Diary is attached below.  This has full details of our services and events this month.

Newsletter_for_January_2019, PDF