We are fast approaching Sunday 5 September, I have called it Back to Church Sunday, I might well have named it Reset Sunday. I hope from the 5 September we can begin to re-chart a way forward for our church, ourselves as members of the Body of Christ and our relationship with the community. It will be good to see Children’s Church back and meeting again in September. So much has changed, we might have very different priorities as individuals and as families, I hope as a church community, we can adapt and if necessary change. Bear with us and if possible give us you advice and ideas. If there are new people in church this Sunday do please make them feel welcome. I hope you will try and make this Sunday a priority, it will be good to see the church full again.
Our Sunday worship will return to something like its pre-pandemic self and the church will become a little less austere and I hope feel a little more welcoming, leaflets, information notes and flyers will again grace our tables. Even the pew runners will return to the pews so I hope seating will become a little more comfortable. For the present we will continue the practice of offering communion in one kind only, but we will do so at the High Altar rail
The virus is still with us and sadly once again growing. Obviously, with the benefit of vaccination, hospitalisations and deaths are thankfully much reduced, yet this virus still packs a nasty punch and we need to remain vigilant. Social distancing is important, I hope you understand, face masks however are a matter for your own decision, I know how difficult it is to sing wearing them. I found this prayer to be prayed when putting on a face mask, it comes from the Episcopal Church in the US I hope you find it useful.
“We bless you and we praise you, Lord Christ, for commanding us to love one another. Let this mask be a sign of your love, and let my behaviour be filled with love for my neighbour. Amen”
I am looking forward to greeting you on Sunday at either the 8.00am and 10.30am Parish mass and our 6.00pm songs of praise.
No doubt many of you will have been following the news from Afghanistan and wondering how any of us might be able to support the refugees. Many national charities have been making special appeals for funds and you might well have contributed to them already. In the borough of Hounslow there is a local organisation, the Afghan and Central Asian Association, based in Feltham, which has been offering practical support to refugees coming to this borough. In Chiswick there have already been collections of specific items requested by this organisation and the next one will be this Sunday at the First Anniversary of the Chiswick Flower Market. Further down in this bulletin there is a list of specific items requested and I encourage you to support them. If anyone attending the 10.30 Mass on Sunday morning would like to donate any items for the refugees, but can’t make it to the Flower Market collection point, please do bring them along and give them to me after Mass and I will ensure they are taken along.
Events in Afghanistan have tended to deflect attention from the dreadful earthquake in Haiti, where so many have also lost homes and livelihoods. I suggest our prayers should include them, together with those from many other countries still trying to rebuild their lives following floods, drought and forest fires.
With every blessing