Words from the Curate
I am sure Happy New Year is still appropriate even though with all the news in recent time on COViD, it does not feel like a happy one and hope seems to be fading with each passing day.
Coming to the end of last year especially with the news of the vaccine, there was such hope in the air, although the well discerning ones amongst us might have seen the lockdown (or is it tier 4) lurking, not me, I didn’t. The lockdown though necessary, based on what experts are saying, is not welcomed. For me it has meant delaying getting to know parishioners better.
It is very challenging recognising people when all you’ve ever seen is them with a facemask. Going to visit or inviting people over is not an option. I was very humbled with the Christmas cards we received, but sadden because for one or two of the cards I do not know the sender – even though one lives on our street. No thanks to Corona Virus.
One of my life-long reflection is – “what do we do in prayers?” Life-long, because when I think I have the answer, then another answer is revealed to me. In the gospel of today we come across Nathanael, a-straight-shooter, who says it as he sees it. When Philip told him about Jesus of Nazareth; he answered; can anything good come out of Nazareth? It is interesting that Jesus did not condemn him for such a way of thinking or speaking about a whole town or group of people. Nathanael was very true to his feelings and at the end he had the revelation (Epiphany) and went to address Jesus as Rabbi, the Son of God. This has given me another answer to what we do in prayer – we tell it to God as we feel!
Prayers give us opportunity to tell it all to God exactly how we feel. And, yes, for me it has been challenging but thanking God for the gift of science, we now have the vaccine and it is coming into Burnham by next week, as I read in the NHW email. Although I might be lower on the pecking order for receiving the vaccine, I am hopeful that with more people receiving it, the lockdown restrictions will be gradually eased.
Happy New year.
Bible study from a Vicar who believes in Christ’s body here on earth, who enjoys to play and pray, laugh and cry, love and learn together in faith.
Read Acts of the Apostles Chapter 25
Read it through once and reflect with the questions, what did you hear, see, say and do?
Sometimes when we pray and wait for God to act, part of the answer is that God is indeed going to act, but God will do so through our taking proper human responsibility in the matter.
Rather like the joke of the man who asked God is he could win the lottery, and God saying first buy a ticket.
There are times when the answer is, the Lord will fight for you, and you only have to keep still. (Exodus 14:14). Other times it is, be strong and very courageous for you shall put this people in possession of the land I swore to give them. (Joshua 1:6)
Discerning and discovering which one is used in which circumstance is hard for Christians and Christian leaders.
At this point in Paul’s life, he has been promised by God through his sense of vocation and has been promised by Jesus through a vision that he will get to Rome. Paul himself has to take responsibility, at one level, for making this happen.
In your experience how have you discerned when to keep still and allow God to act, and when have you taken the initiative and taken action?
Looking back would you have done anything differently?
Looking at Festus what kind of person do you think he is?
In Festus report to Agrippa, what is the main point about Christianity that he mentions?
Festus summary of what happens to Paul, shows us how the Christian faith appears to a pagan.
How is Paul’s case explained to Agrippa from Festus’ point of view?
Bernice was Herod Agrippa the second’s sister, and rumours were rife that their relationship was incestuous.
What do you see in Paul’s character at this time?
We will continue to meet on Zoom. If you would like to join us, please contact or Reverend Janet
We would like to offer support to our parishioners. Although we will not be able to have face-to-face contact , we can still offer offer pastoral care, prayer and practical help- shopping, prescriptions etc.
We are trying to stay in touch with all those who left their information, however we do not have everyone’s details.
Please send you email and /or telephone number to or contact the vicar or the churchwardens
Reverend Janet 07856 047960
Pam Rogers 07800 801388
Pete Lewis 07956 304633
A prayer for all those affected by Coronavirus
Keep us, good Lord, under the shadow of your mercy.
Sustain and support the anxious,
be with those who care for the sick,
and lift up all who are brought low;
that we may find comfort knowing that nothing can separate us from your love
in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen
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