Diary of forthcoming events
FORTHCOMING PARISH EVENTS
PCC MEETING Monday 7th September 2020. St Martin’s Church. 7.45pm.
Annual Vestry & Parochial Church Meeting (APCM, aka AGM) is planned for Monday 19th October 7.30pm; again in St Martin’s in case ECCH is not possible.
NEWS AND UPDATES
ONLINE SERVICES It was lovely to stream our service from St. Philip & St. Etheldreda on Sunday, despite the efforts of a gremlin to foil us again. This time I am confident we have discovered the issue and sorted things out. This Sunday 27th can be viewed in the usual way on the St. Mary webpage or via this link https://youtu.be/eC-vVunJs6Y and the service sheet can be downloaded from this link https://www.stmarysandstagnesnewmarket.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/27th-September-2020_TRINITY_XVI.pdf . Wednesday 30th September will be a Harvest Theme Evening Prayer https://youtu.be/HhxGehnAaRs Service sheet will be available on St. Mary web page soon. Sunday 4th October a live stream from St. Mary Harvest Service is planned. https://youtu.be/Pxy-kolMyhg Wednesday October 7th will be Harvest Hymn Singing on the telephone only WhyPay Number; 03300945940 Room number24456910# pin 7760#. Requests for your favourite Harvest Hymn to Christine Shand please If you are not on our SMENN WhatsApp group and would like to be please contact me. Revd Cheryl Belding
HARVEST FESTIVAL AT ST MARTIN Sunday October 4th at 11.00am. Church decoration will be simple; perhaps those who normally donate fruit, vegetables, and tinned produce would instead like to make a cash donation to Open Door Foodbank to assist their purchasing at this time of increased poverty. Please make cheques payable to Exning PCC or cash to me. Thank you. Gill Nicholson
SILENCE…..is golden ran the song, so how has it been on my silent retreat in Northumberland this past week? A retreat is simply defined as taking one step back with Christ, so that we might move forward better with him. It’s a military metaphor of course (“beating a retreat”) but helpfully is about strategy and tactics of finding the in-dwelling Christ, and advancing more meaningfully and missionally with him. Remarkably, many people have never been on any form of retreat (and there are a few kinds, this one is an Ignatian IGR or individually guided retreat ), and it falls into the same ‘tray’ as those who think that monasteries and convents are only RC (the fact is there are many which are veritably Anglican!), and those who think spiritual direction is for the very devout and holy (whereas the opposite is the case). So the spiritual exercises of St Ignatius, founder of the Jesuits (whoever didn’t see Jeremy Irons in the 1980’s film The Mission?!) are not the sole purview of the RC Church and also sit comfortably along many other spiritualities – Celtic, Benedictine, Franciscan, Dominican, Quaker and so on. So, why silence? Praying is an unending pursuit of the Presence, in which silence is the place of the Presence, and at its heart is God. God’s presence cannot be conjured up or even constrained, but if we wait upon him….a waiting that might mean asking, seeking, knocking, or just waiting, in faith, hope and love, we shall see what is given us to see. Moses never saw the face of God, but he learnt his ways…..of love, justice and self-emptying, and we see him in our neighbours, who need our caring and our prayers. In much of Isaiah silence and hope appear to be specially linked; silence needs to be lived through with patience and quiet persistence, so that hope can flourish. We might sense that we need to do this alone, yet we know that we are also called together, in a meaningful outward expression of fellowship (koinonia), and sometimes our organised structures often do not meet, hence small groupwork in parishes, in which silence (as particularly in the Quakers/Society of Friends) can be the binding factor. A PCC is a small group too, tasked with managing the parish, but which (often in very small parishes) can be such a group too, a leadership that prays comfortably together. Bishop Mike’s encouragement in this area, making meetings more prayerful, is certainly apposite. The discipline and depth of silence help us to come into a new living relationship with the silent, unknown shapes of God, the God who speaks through silences, and a new awareness of being part of the Communion of Saints. Perhaps in our regular, corporate worship we could bid more silence?, and give the congregation confidence by so bidding that we have not simply lost our place! So, a turning in love together to that which unites us – the presence of God. In our Christian lives we can be more concerned with power and knowledge than with love and trust, too impersonal about what lies outside ourselves, resulting in a lack of spontaneity and inability to step into relationship with the Living God. By way of conclusion to this huge subject, try this…..part of ‘Seeking Wholeness’ from ‘The Face of Love’ by Fr Gilbert Shaw…….. Look well, O soul, upon yourself, lest spiritual ambition should mislead and blind you to your essential task – to wait in quietness: to knock and persevere in humble faith. Knock, knock in love, nor fail to keep your place before the door, that when Christ wills – and not before- he may open
RIDE & STRIDE Following on from notices here for the last two weeks, last Saturday (always the 2nd Saturday in September) was the annual Suffolk Historic Churches Trust (SHCT) ‘Ride & Stride’ Day. This year we were (again) blessed by beautiful weather, & I write now to please seek retrospective sponsorship for my efforts for the church of your choosing. 50% of what is raised goes to such designated churches, & 50% to SHCT to enable grant-aiding of particular projects as requested by parishes who pay the modest annual subscription. For the record, I walked & drove to 6 churches in our Mildenhall Deanery, & two of us cycled over 34 miles round another 14 parishes in the Thingoe & Lavenham Deaneries. Your £sponsorship can be by church/parish, or a lump sum; thank you either way ????. For ease at this point, please could you hand/post/letterbox me cash or a cheque payable to SHCT, & if willing to Gift Aid it please let me have your postcode. (The earlier on-line methodology outlined over the last two weeks will also work if you find that easier/preferable). Let’s hope that by next year’s Ride & Stride (September 11th 2021) our churches will again all be open & tenanted, to welcome riders & striders. Blessings, Mark
ANNUAL MEETING ELECTIONS Application forms for nominations as churchwarden (2 posts), deanery synod reps (2), PCC members (4), pro-wardens for St Philips and St Etheldreda (2) and deputy church wardens for St Martins (2) are now available at the back of St Martins Church. As St P and E is currently still closed, if anyone from that end of the parish wishes to make nominations they can either email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) to request that I send them a relevant file to print out or alternatively, apart from for the post of churchwarden, nominations can be made at the annual meeting. Please give completed application forms to me. Thank you. John Pascall
SMENN PROGRESS – AN UPDATE The Revd John Hardy writes: The next meeting of the Shared Ministry in Exning and North Newmarket (SMENN) working group will be on Tuesday 29th September at 7 pm, venue to be confirmed. Hopefully, this will be a face-to-face meeting, in person and not by Zoom, which is not my preferred context for a reflective meeting of this kind. In attendance will – all being well – the archdeacon of Sudbury, Dr David Jenkins, also Canon Mike Booker, all the way from Hemingford Abbots. Mike, another old boy of Hills Road Sixth Form College and thoroughly committed to church and community life in Cambridgeshire, is the bishop of Ely’s ‘Change Officer with Responsibility for Market Towns’. A bit of background might be helpful here. As a key part of its 2025 strategy, the diocese of Ely has decided to make a major investment to encourage its market towns, with a view to enabling churches to flourish and be active partners in changing their towns for the better. The first step in this has been to appoint Mike Booker as Bishop's Change Officer, with a brief to work with clergy and congregations to transform both churches and communities in small towns across the diocese. For more, please go to: https://www.elydiocese.org/church-in-action/changing-market-towns/changing-market-towns . Mike works from the life-changing experience, invaluable for us, of bringing together no fewer than 4 benefices and 11 parishes in west Cambridgeshire to form what is now known, quite inspiringly, as the Lordsbridge Team Ministry. The website (lordsbridge.org): ‘Currently, there are thirteen or more worshipping communities in this network: eleven worship in ancient parish churches, one is becoming a Fresh Expression of Church meeting in a village hall, one is a loose community of young people, and there are other opportunities.’ The purpose of our SMENN workshop meeting on 29th September will be to build on the helpful conversation local clergy enjoyed with Canon Booker and Archdeacon David on 22nd June, and explore the feasibility of now backing a definite proposal for unification of the benefices, prior to an open PCC meeting to be held subsequently (perhaps before the end of 2020). In preparation, PCC members from the three PCCs in Exning and North Newmarket have been invited to complete an ‘Appreciative Inquiry’-type questionnaire, asking in particular:
• Based on what your experience of sharing so far, what do you DREAM for when you think about the future of the benefices? What would the PCC hope for the future mission of their churches and congregations?
• How would you like to see the SMENN working group DEVELOP its thinking and planning in the light of what you have discovered and dreamt about?
• What might you DO to achieve the Dreams listed above in baby steps – small practical steps which ensure that (a) future vision in the parish is shared and owned, and (b) mission, evangelism and outreach are part of your parish’s day to day life?
• What are you now wanting to DO as a result of the SMENN trial to date?
• What can your PCC bring as a distinctive gift to a United Benefice - a unique contribution to life in the two benefices as a whole?
• Are you ready to ‘TAKE YOUR NEXT STEP’ and dare to welcome life within a united benefice of Exning and North Newmarket?
If you, the reader, have a view on any of these questions, please have word with any member of your local PCC, or with one of the clergy. It will not go unheeded. Thank you very much. JOHN HARDY
FR MAX will be licensed as priest-in-charge of Haverhill St Mary the Virgin with Withersfield St Mary the Virgin on Monday 14 September, Holy Cross Day. We wish him, Charlotte and baby Cynthia, Godspeed and all the very best
ADDITIONAL PRAYER LIST In addition to existing mechanisms for the listing of people who need our prayers in the WEN, there is now a monthly sheet on a clipboard at the back of church which can refreshed at any time, but which is begun afresh at the month-end to ensure it is up-to-date. This is for anybody coming into church to make use of, and for those leading the intercessions to refer to….. there are three boxes/categories: Health & Well-being, The Faithful Departed, Thanksgivings for… Please do avail yourselves of its availability. Love and prayers. MARK
OFFERINGS TO THE CHURCH VIA STANDING ORDER . Here are the details if you would like to set up a regular payment through your bank to the parish. If you wish to gift aid your payments, please let me know & I will send a gift aid statement to you if you haven’t already done one.
Account Number: 44358318
Sort Code: 60-15-47
Account Name: Exning PCC
Please put your name as reference
A NOTICE FROM TONY WHITE: NEWMARKET FOODBANK Thankfully we are doing pretty well for donations at present - but there are some shortages: Small jars instant coffee; Small packs of 'normal' tea; Small packs of sugar; Small washing powder; Custard; Tinned rice pudding; Pot noodles and similar; Ketchup and brown sauce. We now have plenty of milk, including whole milk, for the time being. We also have plenty of pasta, baked beans. Thank you for your continued support. TONY WHITE
LANDWADE EVENSONGS 2020 Dear Colleagues, A 'heads-up' regarding the preachers for summer evensongs, 3pm, at Landwade chapel of ease:
September 27 (Harvest Sunday): Mr David Ball, licensed reader from the Lark and Lee benefice.
ECO-CHURCH We get our church office paper from The Green Stationery Company, a small family run business based in Bath. They provide good quality white & coloured paper at a decent price. I received a message from them today & thought I’d share it with you – many businesses will suffer because of the pandemic. Let’s hope this one survives.
“We all know humanity has been putting immense pressure on the environment from unsustainable activity. The result in the last few months, has been floods, fires, locust devastation and now the arrival of a lethal virus. We need to change our business and economic behaviour. The Green Stationery Company has been working for 30 years putting the environment first and profits and growth second. Please support us by continuing to place your online orders. With best wishes for the future and please keep safe.”
A ROCHA is the Christian organisation that we supported last year. This is a message from them.
“We hope and pray that you and your families are keeping safe and well during these challenging times. Around the world, A Rocha teams are being impacted, as are each of you. The importance of biodiversity conservation, and related issues such as access to clean water, is clearer than ever. A Rocha is feeling the effects in various ways: from suspended fieldwork and reduced guest income, to confinements, funding questions and temporary staff dismissals. Uncertainties over the duration and ultimate scale of the crisis make it difficult to plan and many are seeing unforeseen knock-on effects. In Peru, community members are unable to look after the tree saplings planted as part of the reforestation programme. In India, staff are confined to the centre where they are living and working together. And at Karioi in New Zealand, the team is unable to carry out their usual predator control work. We join them in praying that all the work done to date will be enough to keep the returning Grey Faced Petrels or Oi safe as they find their lifelong mate and breed. Through it all, we are thankful for the resilience of the teams and that we are part of a family that cares for and supports each other. Please pray for the immediate and long-term impacts on all the A Rocha projects and for the safety of the staff and volunteers”
A Rocha UK CEO, Andy Atkins, comments on the critical window of opportunity to ‘build back better’ from the pandemic No sane person would have wished Covid-19 on the world. But among the glimpses of a silver lining that have been observed as a side effect of major industrial countries ‘locking down’, has been the sharp fall in greenhouse gas emissions, more space for nature, and cleaner air for people and nature to breathe as air pollution has fallen. Even these small comforts however are in danger of being lost if governments and people do not move very fast to ‘build back better’. The world is at a moment of acute risk and opportunity. In mid-June the respected International Energy Agency (IEA) published a report in which it suggested that we have only about 6 months to ensure that economic recovery funds are invested in a green recovery – and avoid them being invested in fossil fuel and carbon-intensive industries instead. If the latter happens, says the EIA, there is little possibility of avoiding runaway climate change. We must reduce global carbon emissions steeply this decade to do so; but investment decisions taken in the next few months will lock us into energy production and consumption patterns for decades to come. So, with governments planning to commit an estimated $9 trillion (£7.18tn) to rebooting economies in the months ahead, there is the earth to play for. The British government has made some encouraging announcements, but its actions so far – including negotiating bale-out loans to fossil fuel companies and airlines – have not inspired confidence. Yet the wider benefits of going green are multiple. Take job creation. Analysis by the IEA suggests that investing in green industries, such as retrofitting buildings for energy efficiency, or rolling out wind and solar power plants, would create far more jobs than the same investment in old high carbon sectors. Civil society is responding at all levels. On 1 June, 200 business leaders including those from such diverse companies as Aviva insurance, the Church of England Pensions Board, Burger King and Yorkshire Water, sent a joint letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson urging the government to invest in a low carbon recovery. Then on 14th June, leaders of 56 charities from the Climate Coalition, including A Rocha UK, released an open letter to the government calling for a green and fair recovery. Environment and health campaign groups have joined forces to launch the Build Back Better campaign for individuals. And a coalition of Christian charities and denominations, chaired by A Rocha UK, announced the Climate Sunday initiative for churches. What is now needed is widespread backing by the public at large and leaders of all sectors, including the Church. It is difficult for any individual, organisation, government, or country to focus productively on too many things at once. But amidst the disorientation, grief and national trauma of the current pandemic, we must also grasp the intensely urgent opportunity to rescue our future – for people and nature. Two important opportunities to do so are approaching: 1: On 30 June the Climate Coalition is organising The Time Is Now virtual lobby for climate, nature and people. https://arocha.org.uk/the-time-is-now/ 2: Register your interest in your church participating in the unique Climate Sunday initiative, which is to begin in September. www.climatesunday.org