From the Rectory May 2021

As you know we shall be producing three editions of the Benefice News, the first of which appears later in the year. A more substantial Bulletin will now appear on the last Sunday of each month, offering news and the next month's diary. I am grateful to Sally and Elizabeth for producing this first edition.

As I write, a pair of swans are preparing for parenthood on the pond next to the Rectory. Their nest has taken shape over the weeks, the pen busily collecting feathers and twigs; she now perches expectantly... Just over the fence from them buds are bursting forth, the garden heralding new life and potential. Following further easing of the lockdown and greater opportunities for reunions, shopping and outdoor hospitality, we can feel optimistic, though we need to heed the warnings to be cautious.

Philip Baxter officially resigned as Director of Music in March 2020, and during the last year it has proved impossible to sustain a choir. Church and community choirs have been unable to sing together. In the wake of these imposed restrictions, it seemed sensible to disband our choir and to look forward to new leadership. I know you would want to join me in thanking the choir for their commitment and service. Having placed the advert for a Director of Music, I am pleased to say that I have already received some response.

The Easter season lasts some fifty days - forty days will lead us to Ascension Day - and culminates, on the fiftieth day, in the feast of Pentecost. Throughout the Easter season the Paschal Candle continues to occupy a prominent place in church, symbolising Christ's risen presence with us. On the Sundays of Easter, we discover in our readings from 'Acts of the Apostles' how the early Christians lived in the power of the resurrection, how the fledgling church began to find its feet; and we learn what faith in the resurrected Christ can do.

We look forward, with the cob and pen, to what gifts the future will bring us...

With my love and prayers.

Fr John.