Dear member of the All Saints family,
As you may have been aware, the 10:45 service on Sunday was recorded before the news that the Duke of Edinburgh had passed away last Friday. I have included below the message that John Chester said at the 9 AM service on Sunday which includes a call for prayer this week ahead of the funeral on Saturday.
I’m sure there are many like me who were surprised to learn of the many varied areas in which the Duke had contributed, in addition to the well-known Duke of Edinburgh awards. These included wildlife, design and engineering and being the first president of Bafta. The most striking message for me, however, was that his faith had been a foundation for him, and that he gave up a very promising career in the navy as he supported the Queen for more than 70 years, making the most of the life that God had given him. A lifetime of humble service which is an inspiration for us all.
We are reaching an exciting stage with the selection process for the new vicar. The deadline for applications closes this week, and the shortlisting of candidates will follow shortly. Please pray for the Archdeacon Mike Gilbertson, our Simeon’s Trustee Revd Canon Helen Edwards and our Parish Representatives Julie Tynegate and Andy Creeth as they carry this out looking forward to interview date of May 18th.
Our Annual Parochial Church Meeting will take place on April 28th by Zoom call. Two sets of elections will take place, one for the Churchwardens for a one-year appointment, and the other for lay members of the Parochial Church Council for a three-year term of service. Please send nominations to Alex Lewis – Alex.Lewis@allsaints.church. Other business includes reviewing the reports on the activities of the PCC, the church accounts, the goods, fabric and ornaments of the church and Safeguarding. You will have received these reports last week in the Statutory Annual Report. Do look through these, much work has gone into the preparation and the activities described in the reports. There are more details of the meeting in the notices.
Homegroups start studies in 1 Peter this week with the message of ‘Living in Hope’. The studies align with the current sermon series. As Anita Benson, who oversees our groups, says, ‘Homegroups are a great way to learn more about Jesus and how to live for Him in a relaxed and supportive context’. If you would like to join a homegroup which are meeting online at the moment, please contact Anita via the church office.
Finally, something to look forward to! The church leadership is working towards restarting in-person 10:45 services on May 16th to align with the next set of easing of lockdown restrictions on May 17th. The services will be live-streamed, to enable everyone to join either in person or online. There is much to sort out in how we will manage given the restrictions but watch this space…
With best wishes and prayers for God’s blessing,
Andy Creeth and John Chester, Churchwardens
9am Service on Sunday 11th April 2021
Statement Following the Death of HRH Prince Philip
Already many tributes worldwide have been paid to Prince Philip following his death on Friday. The Church of England is doing similarly and we at All Saints as a worshipping community want to add tributes of our own.
Prince Philip has been a great example in many ways but as is often the case his true worth as a husband, parent and consort of the monarch may only be fully seen and appropriately recognised with the passage of time. His hard work and various initiatives have enriched the lives of many.
Our nation has been very blessed having a monarch and consort who have stood together whatever the situation and we can thank God for blessing us through them. It is so easy to fail to recognise the blessings down the years that have resulted from the faithful service to the nation and Commonwealth given by the Queen and Prince Philip.
There will be little opportunity for All Saints to do anything collectively in the next week and before the funeral so can we all, as individuals, in twos or threes or in Zoom or Skype type gatherings remember with thanksgiving before God the life of Prince Philip and pray for the Queen, the Royal family, the Government and nation. Can we also pray that, at this time of mourning in what is still Eastertime, many will call to mind that Jesus’s life of sacrifice, his death and resurrection has for them far reaching consequences beyond this life and turn to him.
May the Lord bless you as you pray.