Today is the first Sunday after Trinity - and we are now in Ordinary Time (numbered weeks) and the church turns green as we continue work our way through the life of Jesus mostly from the Gospel of Matthew this year. If you haven’t already you might like to take some time to read all the way through the Gospel of Matthew - about 2.5 hours I am told! - I have never timed it. (By reading the Gospel just in small portions as we do in church, we may not be able to grasp a particular evangelist’s unique way of proclaiming his message.)
For Families: You might enjoy "A guest edition of Messy Church for Messy Times” (with junk modelling and cooking!). Bishop Alan, Bishops Richard and Michael and the Archdeacons, took part in Messy Church online and you can see the results here.
The Alban Pilgrimage Eucharist takes place from St Albans Cathedral at 10am on Sunday, 21st June, a day before St Alban's Day. It can be accessed from St Albans Cathedral's YouTube page. Many parishes have already expressed an interest in making this service their morning worship that day. Orders of Service will be available on the cathedral website https://www.stalbanscathedral.org/live-streaming-at-st-albans-cathedral
Parish Priest, Broadcaster and former Communard, The Revd Richard Coles will preach and churches from around the world that have links to Alban will participate.
Sunday 21st June is Fathers’ Day
We will take that opportunity to centre our worship on God the Father or the Fatherhood of God.
Opening of the Church
Please note that we are making plans for limited opening of the Church now and will soon be telling everyone when the Church will be available for Private Prayer in line with Government and Church Guidelines. (Opening will be limited at first due to the need to meet safety requirements for everyone - visitors and cleaners etc)
I am sure we are all hoping and praying for the time when we can safely throw the doors open daily once again. In the meantime please do let us know if you need prayers, or if there is anything else we can do for you.
Be safe, keep well,
God bless you
And have a good week everyone.
This morning we celebrate Jesus’ Ascension and then turn again towards Pentecost. And I believe that the invitation to each of us individually, and together as church, is still to prepare and to ask to receive the Holy Spirit again and more…
You might like to know that Bishop Richard was pleased to join us for “Listen in Worship” - for the Sermon and James and Miriam’s singing last Sunday!
At the moment we are also invited by the Archbishop of Canterbury and our Bishops to be part of Thy Kingdom Come 2020.
“Join the global wave of prayer calling all Christians to pray between Ascension and Pentecost for more people to come to know the love and peace of Jesus Christ. May 21st - May 31st 2020”
Praying for people to come to know the love, hope and peace found in Christ is at the heart of Thy Kingdom Come. Could you hold these people in prayer - including them in your morning and evening prayers? Or quite simply, could you commit to saying the Lord’s Prayer at a particular time each day… praying “Thy Kingdom come on earth as it is in Heaven”.
Do remember that there are Zoom meetings for our usual Community Cafes on Tuesdays at 10.30 so that we can socialise as usual. If you would like to be sent an invitation / the link please let me know.
I am sure we are all hoping and praying for the time when we can safely throw the doors open once again. In the meantime please do let us know if you need prayers, or if there is anything else we can do for you.
Be safe, keep well
God bless you, and have a good week.
As we begin now to turn towards Ascension Day (Thursday 21st May) and then towards Pentecost - in our Gospel reading today Jesus promises the gift of the Holy Spirit. And I believe that the invitation to each of us individually, and together as church, is to prepare and to ask to receive the Holy Spirit again and more…
St Michael and All Angels Church Shefford are proud to feature in this VE 75 Day Commemoration Video by Karen Brammer Photography & Digital Art on behalf of the Shefford Town Council. You will recognise some of the contributors to this!
It has been a great honour to be asked to compile this video to commemorate VE75 Day on the 8th May 2020 for Shefford Town Council. It was quite a challenge putting this together as I am in the extremely vulnerable shielding group so have had to go to some great lengths to interview people, obtain images, video and also go through my extensive photo library, all whilst unable to leave my own home.
I am so grateful to all who have contributed and taken part as the success of completing this would not of been possible without their help and willingness to take part. Thanks extend to @SheffordTownCouncil, Paul Mackin, Ken Pollard, Audrey White, St Michael and All Angels Church Shefford, Shefford History Group, Shefford Lower School, Imperial War Museum London Jewish Children's Museum
This video and images were compiled by Karen Brammer, a photographer based in Shefford, Bedfordshire, for Shefford Town Council to commemorate VE 75 Day on the 8th May 2020, to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II in Europe on the 8th May 1945. This video contains images, audio, text and interviews; credit and acknowledgement have been within the video itself.
This video has been compiled during COVID-19 lockdown. It has taken a lot of effort to get a lot of the content of this video due to people self-isolating, social distancing and all the logistics that entailed as a result of this. In just a 2 week period, Karen who compiled the video has managed to contact different people in Shefford and further afield to obtain images, interviews, videos, music, edit and restore damaged photos, go through her extensive library of photos to include in the video.
Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, it has taken longer to collate information from people, some of which didn't arrive until Sunday. Karen spent a lot of time on Monday scanning, editing and restoring images and video clips etc.... finding appropriate music to accompany the visual images. Karen finished the video yesterday ready to go live today.
This short video has been released prior to VE Day to invite the community of Shefford and our surrounding neighbours to join us in the toast, bearing in mind the social distancing rules, to those who gave so much for us. We hope that you will come out into your gardens and join us in the toast at 3pm on Friday, May 8th.
We will add some more images to the video following the VE Day events. So, send us your pictures and video clips so that they can be added to show our community on the day.Click here to watch the Shefford VE75 video!
It recently came to my attention that Frank Bond, a long-standing member of our congregation, neighbour and friend wrote the 'Prayer for Deliverance' below and shared it with some of our neighbours on Easter Sunday morning.
He sent me a copy last night with permission to publish it on the website; please feel free to share it with family and friends.
PRAYER FOR DELIVERANCE.
Most Holy Father,
On this Blessed, beautiful, Easter Day
we are praying for deliverance from
Covid-19, Coronavirus, for ourselves,
our relatives and friends in Shefford,
the United Kingdom and indeed
everyone throughout this world.
Particularly we seek protection for those
caring for all who are sick at this time,
whatever their involvement might be.
Protection for them in their place of work.
Guidance for the Government to take
appropriate and necessary decisions,
consideration of everyone to observe rules
for protection of themselves and others.
Patience of all to face future uncertainty
with courage, determination, perseverance.
Help for those in need and awareness
of any in difficulty. Forbearance for
all who are suffering, or in doubt or fear.
Sympathy and understanding at all levels.
Pleasure in remote contact with others.
Support for all industry and commerce
that our economy may recover.
Knowledge that You are still with us,
and will always keep vigil over us.
FH Bond, Sunday, 12 April 2020
Source: Stephen Lines; Webmaster
Watch last year's Easter day performance of the joyous sermon of Hippolytus!
And in case you didn't get it all (quite a bit of traffic noise, sorry), here's a transcript:
Pascal Sermon - HIPPOLYTUS of Rome
Are you God's friend and lover? rejoice in this glorious feast of feasts!
Are you God's servant, knowing God's wishes? be glad with your Master, share his rejoicing!
Are you worn down with the labour of fasting? now is your payday!
Have you been working since early morning? you will be paid fair and square.
Have you been here since the third hour? you can be thankful, you will be pleased.
If you came at the sixth hour, come up without fear, you will lose nothing.
Did you linger till the ninth hour? come forward without hesitation.
Even if you came at the eleventh hour? have no fear; it is not too late.
God is a generous employer, treating the last to come as he treats the first arrival.
God gives to the one and gives to the other: honours the deed and praises the intention.
Join, then, all of you, join in our Master's rejoicing.
You who were the first to come, you who came after, come now and collect your wages.
Rich and poor, sing and dance together.
You that are hard on yourselves, you that are easy, celebrate this day.
You that have fasted and you that have not, make merry today.
The meal is ready: come and enjoy it. The calf is a fat one: you will not go away hungry. There's hospitality for all, and to spare.
No more apologizing for your poverty: the kingdom belongs to us all.
No more bewailing your failings: forgiveness has come from the grave.
No more fears of your dying: the death of our Saviour has freed us from fear.
Death played the Master: but He has mastered death
Isaiah knew this would happen, and he cried: "Death was angered when it met you in the pit."
It was angered, for it was defeated.
It was angered, for it was mocked.
It was angered, for it was abolished.
It was angered, for it was overthrown.
It was angered, for it was bound in chains.
Death swallowed a body, and met God face to face.
It took earth and encountered heaven.
It took what is seen and fell upon the unseen.
O Death, where is your sting? O Grave, where is your victory?
Christ is risen and you are overthrown.
Christ is risen and evil has fallen.
Christ is risen and the angels rejoice.
Christ is risen and life reigns.
Christ is risen and not one dead remains in the tomb.
Christ is risen indeed from the dead, the first of all who had fallen asleep.
Glory and power to him for ever and ever!
Christ is risen! HE IS RISEN INDEED!
Christ is risen! HE IS RISEN INDEED!
Christ is risen! HE IS RISEN INDEED!
Video: Stephen Lines
Date: Easter Sunday, 12 April 2020
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