Today the Church remembers Augustine of Canterbury, who arrived in England in 597AD as a missionary from Rome with the objective to re-evangelize the English Church. He converted King Ethelbert to the Christian faith. Further to ordination as a Bishop, Augustine returned to England and became the first Archbishop of Canterbury.
Augustine’s mission was particularly important because as much as it was about ‘re-evangelizing’ it was also about establishing a sense of ‘church’; of a togetherness of Christian people; hence the importance of the conversion of the monarch.
Christianity was already very much present. It had arrived by way of the Roman occupation that had ended 200 years before, and Celtic Christianity was starting to grow in northern and western parts. St Columba had arrived in Iona (Scotland) in 563, and quickly established a monastery there, which would go on to become hugely influential on Christianity in the years to come.
‘Church’ will mean subtly different things to many of us, but whatever that is, the common core is a sense of shared faith – a togetherness. Augustine brought with him what was radical and modern for the day, but would now be seen as incredibly traditional! But it wasn’t all new language, it was a renewal – fresh thinking – building upon foundations that to greater and lesser degrees were already there.
Spend some time over the coming days in reflection and see if you can identify what the seeds of faith in you might look like – what form do they take? What are your foundations of faith? Taking those, what could be built upon them? What is your story?
A prayer for Augustine of Canterbury:
O Lord our God,
who by your Son Jesus Christ called your servant Augustine
to preach the Gospel to the English people:
We pray that all whom you call and send may do your will,
bide your time, and see your glory;
through the same Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen
It was wonderful to celebrate Pentecost with you at St John’s last Sunday. I am really looking forward to praying through the words of the Spirit with you. More to come!
Sunday 30rd May (Trinity Sunday):
8am: St John’s, Tatworth. Holy Communion. Rev Terri.
10am: St Stephen’s, Winsham. Holy Communion. Rev Philip
6:30pm: St Michael’s, Chaffcombe. Evensong. Rev Judith
Thursday 27th May – 7:30pm TEZ.
Looking at the Pentecost through Icons.
Meeting ID: 851 5624 4352
Sunday 30th May
A recorded service for Trinity will be available online from Sunday morning at https://twoshires.wordpress.com
A schedule of services for June, July and August was approved with the Churchwardens yesterday and I will circulate those very shortly. They will also be available at https://twoshires.wordpress.com/serviceinfo
ANNUAL PAROCHIAL CHURCH MEETINGS (APCM)
The remaining APCM’s in the Benefice are on the following dates and times:
27th May: 11am St Michael’s Chaffcombe
Once all the APCM’s have been completed I will circulate a compiled list of elected church officers.
We pray for those we know who are sick, and those we don’t know, including those we are asked to pray by name for:
Hannah Knott; Rob Allen; Lynne and Bruce Applegarth; Phyllis Baker; Margaret Bandy; Sue Bennett; Sue Cheese; Terry Conway; Nick Frankau; David Goodwill; Mike Heywood; Joy Howard; Ann Jarvis; Frank & Celia Long; Peter McHugh; Diana Rowlands; Ann Ricketts; Jim Tucker; Rosemary Walley; Rosemary Walton; Vivien Wheaton; Alan Wills, Anna Woodward; Pamala Young; Milly granddaughter of Jane & Alan Rudkin; Gillian Muggeridge; Chris Gould; Brian Griffiths; Peter Hathway; Dorothy Down; Max Woehrle; Michael Mutch; Kelvin Yendell; Winnie Barge; Izzie Luty-Wells; Tracy; Mary Butler.
We remember all those whom we love but see no longer, and pray for all those bereaved. We remember June Ball, Terry Ward and Kenneth ‘Ringo’ Gough.
Please also pray for the following couples as they prepare for marriage in the next 3 months:
Charlotte Down & Nick Hawker
Lindsay Blackshaw & James Spurdle
Ashleigh Chislett & Keiren Pope
Julie Hampshire & Chris Bingley
Thomas Palmer & Lisa Bicknell
Carl Sheehan & Karen Boyland
SCRIPTURE FOR THE WEEK – TRINITY SUNDAY
3 Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2 He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.”
3 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.”
4 “How can someone be born when they are old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely they cannot enter a second time into their mother’s womb to be born!”
5 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”
9 “How can this be?” Nicodemus asked.
10 “You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things? 11 Very truly I tell you, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. 12 I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? 13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
The Collect for Weekdays after Pentecost:
O Lord, from whom all good things come:
grant to us your humble servants,
that by your holy inspiration
we may think those things that are good,
and by your merciful guiding may perform the same;
through our Lord Jesus Christ,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.