This week’s online services are available. This time from three places.
You can go to the “Online Services” section of this website, click on the link for 10th May and then on the text under the small video picture. Then click on the larger picture of the video to watch.
You can download the usual quality versions from this website (right click, and choose “Download as…” or “Save as…” : Communion Family Service
Or you can view the videos in Youtube at: Communion – https://youtu.be/5jviFRRQYYk Family service – https://youtu.be/yKVsLTZTfZY Youtube allows me to post larger quality versions which you can watch on more devices like Apple TV, but there are sometimes problems because of the songs (I do have the licences to show them, but Youtube doesn’t know that).
As you know, we have had to pause production of the Villages magazine for the next few months. However, there is still news we wish to share around the villages, so we will be producing an A4 newsletter every few weeks. The first one is available via the “Villages Magazine” link above. Do feel free to download, print and share as you wish; we are trying to make sure that those without internet or social media access are also informed about what is going on.
The Sunday service will shortly be online to watch.
A couple of comments. First, it is just one service this week, and I wasn’t able to get too much child-friendly material for the topic that I could use (for copyright reasons). So I have also posted a link to a child-friendly version of the Gospel story if you want it.
Secondly, at the end of the service, there is a brief pause, and then another 8 minutes or so of sermon. Please feel free to stop before this if you wish, it is just some extra material that felt too long for the service, but which some might want to watch as well.
The services for this Sunday are now online to watch online in the “Online Services” section. If you want to download them to watch offline (or because your internet is slow), then right click (or press and hold your finger down for a couple of seconds if you have a tablet like an iPad) on the links below and choose to download the files. You can also left click on the links below, but the videos might be a little small.
First, a big thank you for all the kind comments about the services. I’m afraid I couldn’t write back to all of them this week because there were so many and I was on holiday. But I did read them and am very grateful.
Linda has provided this week’s service – another first for us. It’s available as usual in the Online Services section as a Morning Worship service. Or you can download it as usual here.
At Easter in 2005 whilst I was at Easter School in Salisbury as part of my Ordination training, I was privileged to hear the first airing of a new Oratorio entitled 'The Resurrection' by Simon McEnery; Words by Jeremy Davies.This is part of that work; the words I find deeply meaningful each Easter as I read them again.Easter Morning
Alone in the garden of Eden, God spent himself crafting a race
Yearning for some selfless creature, to show in reflection, his grace.
Where justice and peace flowed like rivers, compassion like fruit on the trees
He made his companions just like him,Like lovers he wanted to please.
But right at the heart of creation God purposely fashioned a flaw
Deliberately giving free choices to creatures demanding yet more.
The outcome of such trusting goodness might have drawn love in return
But pride lit the tinder of evil and God watched his universe burn.
But God who is love does not waver, he will not abandon his own
He follows them to the far country, though lonely, they’re never alone.
His love like a mantle enfolds them, he brings them home time and again.
He died on a cross on a Friday, enduring humanity’s pain.
And then in a garden on Sunday when the world again started to turn
God walks in the cool of the morning and waits for his children’s return.
He wonders if they will recall him, remember him after this time;
His hands, feet and side deeply wounded, his face still disfigured with grime
And then like the dawn of creation a loved one returns to the scene;
She seeks for the grave of her Master to weep where his body has been.
He murmurs her name like the dew drops, she turns to him, falls at his feet
Her love is the one thing he’s longed for, it heralds the cycle complete.
Though the garden of Eden’s grown over with tumbleweed, bramble and briar
The gardener returns as he promised, the phoenix is raised from the fire.
The embers return to cold ashes; a new fire now bursts into flame
A new Alleluia is sounded. For Jesus, old Adam’s new name
I’m sorry that I won’t be able to sort out a service for tonight to remember the Last Supper. There are plenty of services around which I hope you feel able to make use of.
However, Linda has put together a meditation (download here) which you could use tomorrow either on a walk or in your home, to help us think about the love of God which took Jesus to the cross. It would be great if you could join us in this.
The cross will be up on Cherhill Down between Good Friday and Easter Sunday. Please use it to help you reflect, but it is not intended as a gathering point. If it is on or near a walk you would normally make, please do pause and think, but only briefly and by yourselves. Please do not make a special trip to visit it – it does not count as an essential trip. I hope that many of you can see it from near where you are, and that it helps you to know it is there.
THESE ARE THE DAYS OF ELIJAH As I was sat social distancing, on the top of a hill recently, (my dog was much more than 2 metres away from me!!) there was a sense of warmth, beauty and calmness in this crazy time that we are living…….yet there were no sounds except the song of the birds; no aeroplanes in the sky; no sound of traffic, no people passing by. A quiet eeriness, and a feeling that although the world was at a standstill, God was still here.
Because the world was at a standstill, I could hear God more clearly. God was still God. He was still here even though nobody else was …….we are being stripped bare but God was still here and he was showing himself through his creation
And then the words came into my head: “Here on this earth these are the days of Corona” then straightaway, ‘These are the days of Elijah’ I took out my phone, the only link with human kind I had for an hour and a half, (my children say I should always carry it!) and found the song:
These are the days of Elijah Declaring the word of the Lord, And these are the days of Your servant, Moses Righteousness being restored
These are the days of great trials Of famine and darkness and sword Still we are the voice in the desert crying Prepare ye the way of the Lord !
Behold He comes, riding on the clouds Shining like the sun, at the trumpet’s call Lift your voice, (it’s) the year of Jubilee Out of Zion’s hill, salvation comes
And these are the days of Ezekiel The dry bones becoming as flesh; And these are the days of Your servant David Rebuilding a temple of praise
And these are the days of the harvest Oh, the fields are as white in Your world And we are the labourers in Your vineyard Declaring the word of the Lord!
This time now, more evidently than ever for me, is for Righteousness to be restored; for us as Christians to be those voices in the desert bringing a cry of hope and salvation and rebuilding a Temple of praise, not particularly in our churches, for we cannot do that at the moment but in peoples’ lives, in our communities and ultimately in the world. Linda Dytham March 2020