You are herePewsheet Archive / January 2020

January 2020


30th January 2020

The Parish Churches of

St Michael & St Wulfad, Stone, with

St Saviour Aston by Stone

 

CANDLEMAS

 

The date of Candlemas is established by the date set for the Nativity of Jesus, for it comes forty days afterwards. Under Mosaic law as found in the Torah, a mother who had given birth to a boy was considered unclean for seven days; moreover she was to remain for three and thirty days "in the blood of her purification." Candlemas therefore corresponds to the day on which Mary, according to Jewish law, should have attended a ceremony of ritual purification (Leviticus 12:2–8). The Gospel of Luke 2:22–39 relates that Mary was purified according to the religious law, followed by Jesus' presentation in the Jerusalem temple, and this explains the formal names given to the festival, as well as its falling 40 days after the Nativity.

In the Roman Catholic Church, the day is known as the "Presentation of the Lord" and as the "Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary.”  In the Eastern Orthodox Church and Greek Catholic Churches, it is known as the "Feast of the Presentation of our Lord, God, and Saviour Jesus Christ in the Temple" or as "The Meeting of Our Lord, God and Saviour Jesus Christ".

In the churches of the Anglican Communion, it is known by various names, including: The Presentation of Our Lord Jesus Christ in The Temple (Candlemas), The Presentation of Christ in the Temple, and The Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

It is known as the Presentation of Our Lord in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod observes 2 February as The Purification of Mary and the Presentation of Our Lord.  "Candlemas" is a northern European name for the festival because there had long been a procession with lighted candles at the mass on this day, reflecting Simeon's proclamation of "a light for revelation to the Gentiles", which, in turn, echoes Isaiah 49:6 in the second of the “servant of the Lord” oracles.

 

Ian Cardinal

Hymns for today

                        Aston                          Stone

            426                              426

            Ps24                            118

                        118                              148

542                              527/542

148                              552

 

Please pray for the sick in the benefice:

Mary Townsend,  Elsie Richardson, Vera Tomkinson, Neil & Pat Wynne, Gary Kelsall, John Richardson, Peter Bowler,  Catherine Ritchie,  Graham Baker,  James Astle, Miles Brain,  John & Ann Shuttleworth,  Evelyn Cotterill, Margaret Wright, Gren Deakin, Margaret Bott, Molly Wright, Norman Latham, Joyce Crowther,

 

And for the departed:

John Owen, Veronica Cooper, Ken Johnson

 

Remembering their families and friends at this time

This week:

Tuesday 4th 11.45am – 1pm Drop Inn café – St Michael’s hall

            7pm St Michael’s school governors – Ev & Strat meeting

Thursday 5th 10.30am Holy Communion – St M&W

            2pm Deanery Standing Committee – 11 Farrier Close

 

SUNDAY SCHOOLcontinues this Sunday in the vestry of St Michael & St Wulfad’s church. Do keep the leaders and children in your prayers and pray for its success

 

WEDDING FAIRSunday 23rd February – from 11am till 3pm.  Margaret Moss and Christine Connolly have a list of help they need over the weekend. Please do whatever you can!

There will be no 10.45am Service that day. Opportunities to take communion will be as usual at 8am and 9.15am that day

 

LADIES OUTING:  Wednesday March 11th 12.30pm, lunch at Amerton Farm. Please see Steph in order to book your place and get information

 

MARCH 1ST GOLF CLUB LUNCH, hosted by Aston Church Social Committee. – cost £17.40. Tickets available from all members

26th January 2020

The Parish Churches of

St Michael & St Wulfad, Stone, with

St Saviour Aston by Stone

 

 

LADIES OUTING:  Wednesday March 11th 12.30pm, lunch at Amerton Farm. Please see Steph in order to book your place and get information

 

“..immediately they left the boat and their Father and followed him”  It all sounds glamorous and slick, doesn’t it? I’m sure it can’t have been as bald as it sounds in this week’s gospel! You could imagine Zebedee following his sons and shouting “Come back here – your mother wants you home for your tea!” otherwise. There are those who recognise that last week’s reading of John’s gospel, where they have already met Jesus with John the Baptist is not necessarily contrary to this week’s account. Maybe James and John had already been preparing for this day

I said glamorous, because there are those who ache for the “top jobs” even in churches. They imagine that to be the street preacher, Bishop (or even Rector) is a nice easy task where there is a lot of glory. Believe me they are mistaken! More importantly still, this is not necessarily what vocation is all about! When Bishop Michael set us his direction of travel as “Discipleship, Vocation and Evangelism” he was very clear that the Vocation element was not about calling a lot more people to be Priests and Deacons. It may be for some, but for most of God’s people, Vocation is much more about learning to serve God where he has already put us. In other words, for every James and John that are called to live a nomadic life, preaching the gospel, there are many who are called to stay mending the nets and telling their fellow fishermen about the good news of God’s love for them.

So the question is – where is God calling you today? Sometimes it’s an easy path, chiming with our own desires – but sometimes it can be the very reverse. How many times have I found myself in situations that I feel I cannot cope with? By the Grace of God, we are still standing!

Let’s seek God’s purpose for our live and his Church in these two parishes today.

 

Hymns for today

                        Aston                          Stone

            82                                70

            500                              113

                        531                              531

341/404                       341/404

513                              394

 

Please pray for the sick in the benefice:

Mary Townsend,  Elsie Richardson, Vera Tomkinson, Neil & Pat Wynne, Gary Kelsall, John Richardson, Peter Bowler,  Catherine Ritchie,  Graham Baker,  James Astle, Miles Brain,  John & Ann Shuttleworth,  Evelyn Cotterill, Margaret Wright, Gren Deakin, Margaret Bott, Molly Wright, Norman Latham, Joyce Crowther,

 

And for the departed:

Jeff Smith, John Owen, Veronica Cooper, Ken Johnson

Remembering their families and friends at this time

This week:

Monday 27th 7.30pm Stone PCC meeting - Church

Tuesday 28th 11.45am – 1pm Drop Inn café – St Michael’s hall

Wednesday 29th 2pm – 4pm Craft Café – St Saviour’s

Thursday 30th 10.30am Holy Communion – St M&W

 

SUNDAY SCHOOLcontinues this Sunday in the vestry of St Michael & St Wulfad’s church. Do keep the leaders and children in your prayers and pray for its success

 

WEDDING FAIRSunday 23rd February – from 11am till 3pm.  What can you do to help and encourage this event? Please contact Margaret Moss or Chris Connolly

There will be no 10.45am Service that day. Opportunities to take communion will be as usual at 8am and 9.15am that day

 

THE NEXT CRAFT CAFEat St Saviour's Church will be on Wednesday 29 January from 2-4pm. We will be making silk painted cards. Refreshments and craft materials are provided, please let Revd Alison know if you are coming along, alison.hudson4@gmail.com or 07725 467246

19th January 2020

The Parish Churches of

St Michael & St Wulfad, Stone, with

St Saviour Aston by Stone

 

THE NEXT CRAFT CAFEat St Saviour's Church will be on Wednesday 29 January from 2-4pm. We will be making silk painted cards. Refreshments and craft materials are provided, please let Revd Alison know if you are coming along, alison.hudson4@gmail.com or 07725 467246

 

† Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us! †

 

            And so we sing, Sunday by Sunday, “Lamb of God you take away the sin of the world” – like so many things, we take the roots of our worship for granted, so maybe it’s time to think about what the words might mean

            I suspect we all know what happened at the end of the ten plagues of Egypt: with the last plague, Pharaoh is finally seen to change his mind and to let the people go. But the last plague is seen with the celebration of the Passover:- the people eat a choice lamb that is roasted for them. They are to sleep in their clothes and to be prepared to leave Egypt. And the blood of the lamb marks each of their houses, so that the visitation of God on the Egyptians shall not come upon them

            Animal sacrifice is alien to us: it’s something we barely understand in our nice, tidy civilisation. The point of the lamb is that it is an expensive offering, however: in a subsistence economy, each animal is the difference between success and failure, life and death. Worship of God is therefore an extravagant business – we cannot offer to God something that is shoddy or second rate

            John the Baptist calls Jesus the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world in this week’s gospel. In doing so, he recognises that things are rather reversed in the New Testament. Instead of our worship costing us the earth, God chooses to risk his own Son in order to gather his people about him and call them home

            Perhaps the only thing left to say is to remind us of the last verse of that tremendous Christmas carol: What shall I give him, poor as I am?  The final words remind us that the only possible response to such love is Yet what I can I give him – give my heart!

 

Ian Cardinal

Hymns for today

                        Aston                          Stone

            174                              122

            71                                53

                        41                                21 (Carol sheet)

127/10                        342/10

532                              532

 

Please pray for the sick in the benefice:

Mary Townsend,  Elsie Richardson, Vera Tomkinson, Neil & Pat Wynne, Gary Kelsall, John Richardson, Peter Bowler,  Catherine Ritchie,  Graham Baker,  James Astle, Miles Brain,  John & Ann Shuttleworth,  Evelyn Cotterill, Margaret Wright, Gren Deakin, Margaret Bott, Molly Wright, Norman Latham, Joyce Crowther, Veronica Cooper

 

And for the departed:

George Wright, Norman Goodwin, Jeff Smith, John Owen

 

Remembering their families and friends at this time

This week:

Tuesday 21st 11am Funeral of Jeff Smith at St Saviour’s

11.45am – 1pm Drop Inn café – St Michael’s hall

Wednesday 22nd 7.30pm Aston PCC Meeting - Church

Thursday 16th 10.30am Holy Communion – St M&W

 

SUNDAY SCHOOLcontinues this Sunday in the vestry of St Michael & St Wulfad’s church. Do keep the leaders and children in your prayers and pray for its success

 

WEDDING FAIRSunday 23rd February – from 11am till 3pm. Local businesses will be involved in displaying their wares and services in St Michael & St Wulfad’s Church.

For us as congregations, this is a wonderful opportunity to promote the idea of Christian marriage – not just a pretty venue, but a time to ask God’s blessing on relationships, to think about hopes and promises for the future.

We will need people to welcome them on the day, to provide refreshments and information about what each of our churches can offer

Do have a word with Margaret Moss or Christine Connolly about what help you might be able to offer

Service pattern at St Michael & St Wulfad’s will be very different that day. Keep an eye open for details

12th January 2020

The Parish Churches of

St Michael & St Wulfad, Stone, with

St Saviour Aston by Stone

 

“I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins….”Something we say every Sunday, and sometimes on days in between. It is, of course, the latest version of the Nicene Creed, a statement of faith, evolved down the centuries, keeping (most) Christians to a single statement of faith that is regarded as normative

But what do we mean by “one baptism”? Many of us were tiny when we were baptised – apparently I was 3 months old and screamed all the way through mine – look what happened to me! Some Christians still claim this not to be a valid baptism – that only a professing and believing adult can commit themselves in this way

The history is, of course, rather more complicated than that. The Hebrews of old had no truck with this kind of thinking. Every male Jew was admitted into a special relationship with God and their community, 8 days after they were born, when they were circumcised and named. It seems very likely that the first Christians simply followed that practice. When a leader of a household became a Christian and was baptised, every member of that household was admitted to God’s promise as well – slaves, men and women and even tiny children. It wasn’t just about whether or not they could state belief – it was about a God who called everyone into a Covenant with him. We see echoes of this early in the New Testament

Baptism is about God’s promise to us. It’s about It’s about admitting us into a fellowship with the Lord Jesus Christ. It is symbolic of death and resurrection – and is part of the seal of the Holy Spirit, as promised to us

This Sunday’s readings are devoted to the account of Jesus’s baptism. Our Eastern Orthodox brothers and sisters are fond of reminding us that this is deeply Trinitarian: all three elements of the Godhead are there and active, Father Son and Holy Spirit. As we continue in our ministry of baptism in our churches, may we see and know that wonderful God who welcomes us into his family, active amongst us today

Ian Cardinal

Hymns for today

                        Aston                          Stone

            113                              113

            75                                75

                        451                              209

491/367                       287/367

394                              71

 

Please pray for the sick in the benefice:

Mary Townsend,  Elsie Richardson, Vera Tomkinson, Neil & Pat Wynne, Gary Kelsall, John Richardson, Peter Bowler,  Catherine Ritchie,  Graham Baker,  James Astle, Miles Brain,  John & Ann Shuttleworth,  Evelyn Cotterill, Margaret Wright, Gren Deakin, Margaret Bott, Molly Wright, Norman Latham, Joyce Crowther

 

And for the departed:

George Wright, Norman Goodwin, Jeff Smith, Phyllis Hunter

 

Remembering their families and friends at this time

This week:

Tuesday 14th 11.45am – 1pm Drop Inn café – St Michael’s hall

Thursday 16th 10.30am Holy Communion – St M&W

 

SUNDAY SCHOOLcontinues this Sunday in the vestry of St Michael & St Wulfad’s church. Do keep the leaders and children in your prayers and pray for its success

 

WEDDING FAIRSunday 23rd February – from 11am till 3pm. Local businesses will be involved in displaying their wares and services in St Michael & St Wulfad’s Church.

For us as congregations, this is a wonderful opportunity to promote the idea of Christian marriage – not just a pretty venue, but a time to ask God’s blessing on relationships, to think about hopes and promises for the future.

We will need people to welcome them on the day, to provide refreshments and information about what each of our churches can offer

Do have a word with Margaret Moss or Christine Connolly about what help you might be able to offer

Service pattern at St Michael & St Wulfad’s will be very different that day. Keep an eye open for details

5th January 2020

The Parish Churches of

St Michael & St Wulfad, Stone, with

St Saviour Aston by Stone

Happy New Year

Happy New Year

May we all have a vision now and then

Of a world where every neighbour is a friend

So sang ABBA in 1980, of course (was it really 40 years ago?)  It’s a lovely sentiment – may the New year bring new things, better times and a world with fewer problems – where “every neighbour is a friend”

But sadly, these years have not brought that any nearer. In North Korea the leader, Kim Jong Un threatens us all with restarting his nuclear arms program. In the Yemen, children are starving on a scale that is almost unseen – and not for any natural disaster, but for an ongoing civil war. In our own country, there was a horrible incident just down the road from us, where a mobility scooter in Cannock was struck, and its occupant killed, by a hit and run driver on New Year’s Eve. No, the world has not really progressed at all

This Sunday, the Church is celebrating Epiphany – the arrival of the Magi, with their symbolic gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. But the meaning of the story is not in details of camels, ruthless Kings in Jerusalem or anything else. St Matthew’s Gospel is relating something far more important – how pagan astrologers could come and see the Christ child and simply bend the knee. They represent all the other religions of the world taking one look at what God has done in the Lord Jesus and then realised how superior he is to any understanding of their own! The same thing is done in those early pictures of the Manger scene, where an Ox and an Ass stand by: they don’t so much reprint the animals in the stable as the other Eastern religions coming to worship at the crib!

So Happy New Year. But a New Year not with vague hopes of a better future, but of a humankind that comes together to recognise that its Creator has come to us in an unique way in Jesus. As we come to a unity in him, may we find the true way where “every neighbour is a friend”

Ian Cardinal

Hymns for today

                        Aston                          Stone

            71                                451

            Ps72 vs 1-9                  118

                        113                              sheet

514                              542/41

394                              394

 

Please pray for the sick in the benefice:

Mary Townsend,  Elsie Richardson, Vera Tomkinson, Neil & Pat Wynne, Gary Kelsall, John Richardson, Peter Bowler,  Catherine Ritchie,  Graham Baker,  James Astle, Miles Brain,  John & Ann Shuttleworth,  Evelyn Cotterill, Margaret Wright, Gren Deakin, Margaret Bott, Molly Wright, Norman Latham, Michael Richardson, Joyce Crowther

 

And for the departed:

George Wright, Norman Goodwin, Jeff Smith, Phyllis Hunter

Remembering their families and friends at this time

This week:

Tuesday 7th NO DROP INN café – Christmas break

Thursday 9th 9.30am Holy Communion – The Moorings

10.30am Holy Communion – St M&W

 

SUNDAY 5TH January 4pm Healing and meditation service at St M&W – all welcome. This will be with a Taize flavour this month

 

Apologies to all members of Aston PCCWe should have met on Wednesday, but the Rector is due at a meeting for Heads and Chairs of school Governors. Date to be re-arranged

 

A NEW SUNDAY SCHOOLbegins this Sunday in the vestry of St Michael & St Wulfad’s church. Do keep the leaders and children in your prayers and Pray for its success

 

A Happy and blessed New Year to you all