Lorgues with Fayence in the Var

Part of the Anglican Mission of the Diocese in Europe

Last updated 6th May 2017

      Last updated 23rd May 2020

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Sunday MAY 24th   

"That they may all be one"


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  • Sundays and Wednesday Matter


    This weeks "NIGHTCAP"

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    DOWNLOAD NIGHTCAP HERE from Wednesday Midday  but for now  listen to How Great is our God


    This weeks' NIGHTCAP "Wednesday 27th May  psalm 133,

    with Bob  and  Kim

    "How Great is our God"


    Sundays and Wednesday Matter

    Sunday May 24th    "That they may be One"


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    DOWNLOAD Service here 


    Last weeks' NIGHTCAP "Wednesday 20th May  psalm 132,

    with Helen Goldenberg

    "You are now the temple of the Spirit of God"


    Meanwhile, join our Easter Pilgrimage each day to the Ascension, see below

    Sundays and Wednesday Matter


    Last weeks "NIGHTCAP"

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    DOWNLOAD NIGHTCAP HERE 


    Last weeks' NIGHTCAP "Wednesday 20th May  psalm 132,

    with Helen Goldenberg

    "You are now the temple of the Spirit of God"


    Meanwhile, join our Easter Pilgrimage each day to the Ascension, see below

    Sundays and Wednesday Matter


    Next Service Online "NIGHTCAP"


    DOWNLOAD TODAYS SERVICE  HEREimage          

    Last weeks' Sunday Worship 17th May 

    Sowing Seeds in Athens



    Acts chapter 17 and verses 22-31 

    22 Then Paul stood in front of the Areopagus and said, “Athenians, I see how extremely religious you are in every way. 23 For as I went through the city and looked carefully at the objects of your worship, I found among them an altar with the inscription, ‘To an unknown god.’ What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. 24 

    The God who made the world and everything in it, he who is Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in shrines made by human hands, 25 nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mortals life and breath and all things. 26 From one ancestor[a] he made all nations to inhabit the whole earth, and he allotted the times of their existence and the boundaries of the places where they would live, 27 so that they would search for God[b] and perhaps grope for him and find him—though indeed he is not far from each one of us. 28 For ‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we too are his offspring.’

    29 Since we are God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the deity is like gold, or silver, or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of mortals. 30 While God has overlooked the times of human ignorance, now he commands all people everywhere to repent, 31 because he has fixed a day on which he will have the world judged in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed, and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”
    This is the word of the Lord


    Also, join our Easter Pilgrimage each day to the Ascension, see below

    Sundays and Wednesday Matter

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    Evil disturbs us. Some of the hardest parts of the gospels to understand in our generation are the miracles of deliverance. We rejoice that Jesus restores those whose lives are distorted in ways we cannot understand. But we are perplexed at the diagnosis of conditions we might now describe differently.

    Mark 5.1–20

    5 They came to the other side of the lake, to the country of the Gerasenes. And when he had stepped out of the boat, immediately a man out of the tombs with an unclean spirit met him. He lived among the tombs; and no one could restrain him any more, even with a chain; for he had often been restrained with shackles and chains, but the chains he wrenched apart, and the shackles he broke in pieces; and no one had the strength to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always howling and bruising himself with stones. When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and bowed down before him; and he shouted at the top of his voice, ‘What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, do not torment me.’ For he had said to him, ‘Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!’ Then Jesus asked him, ‘What is your name?’ He replied, ‘My name is Legion; for we are many.’ He begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. Now there on the hillside a great herd of swine was feeding; and the unclean spirits begged him, ‘Send us into the swine; let us enter them.’ So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out and entered the swine; and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the lake, and were drowned in the lake.

    The swineherds ran off and told it in the city and in the country. Then people came to see what it was that had happened. They came to Jesus and saw the demoniac sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, the very man who had had the legion; and they were afraid. Those who had seen what had happened to the demoniac and to the swine reported it. Then they began to beg Jesus to leave their neighbourhood. As he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed by demons begged him that he might be with him. But Jesus refused, and said to him, ‘Go home to your friends, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and what mercy he has shown you.’ And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed.

    The Church is called to take evil seriously. The baptism service still contains a prayer of deliverance at the signing of the cross: ‘May almighty God deliver you from the powers of darkness…and lead you in the light and obedience of Christ.’

    The prayer reflects the truth that there is a deep spiritual dimension to our lives. Evil can affect us in ways we do not realize or understand, but no situation is beyond the reach of the power and the love of Christ. Part of our calling is to bear witness to how much Jesus has done for us.

    How will you bear witness this week to your family and friends and neighbours to what Jesus has done for you?

    By your agony and trial;
    by your cross and passion;
    and by your precious death and burial;
    good Lord, deliver us.


    From the Litany

    Sometimes when people are ill, there is something wrong with body. Sometimes there is something wrong with their mind. Think about the hospitals near you. Do they help people with their bodies or their minds? Pray for the people who are ill, and the doctors and nurses who are caring for them.

    Easter Pilgrim day 32


    imageEphesians offers a picture of the Christian life as a battle. The Church encourages every Christian at their baptism to fight valiantly ‘against sin, the world and the devil’. We do battle against the evil which remains in our own lives. We do battle against the evil which is in the world. We do battle against the devil, who represents the spiritual forces of evil we cannot see.

    Read

    Ephesians 6.10-20

    Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his power. Put on the whole armour of God, so that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For our struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armour of God, so that you may be able to withstand on that evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand therefore, and fasten the belt of truth around your waist, and put on the breastplate of righteousness. As shoes for your feet put on whatever will make you ready to proclaim the gospel of peace. With all of these, take the shield of faith, with which you will be able to quench all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

    Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert and always persevere in supplication for all the saints. Pray also for me, so that when I speak, a message may be given to me to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it boldly, as I must speak.

    Reflect

    One translation of this line of the Lord’s Prayer is ‘deliver us from the evil one’. Sometimes, the evil which besets us seems not random, but to have a strategy to pull us down, accuse us or distract us.

    The daily call to resist evil is a call to courage and to take seriously the challenges of living as a disciple. Ephesians offers help here through a picture of the armour of God: the qualities of truth, righteousness, salvation, peace, faith and the scriptures which shape our inner lives.

    Pause

    Turn Ephesians 6.10-20 into a prayer and put on the whole armour of God.

    Pray

    By your ministry in word and work;
    by your mighty acts of power;
    and by your preaching of the kingdom,
    good Lord, deliver us.


    From the Litany

    Family

    Make an “Armour of God” pairs game. You will need 12 pieces of card or thick paper. Draw or paste a picture of a belt on one card, a breastplate on another, shoes, shield, helmet and sword on four more cards. On the last six cards write Truth, Righteousness, The Gospel of Peace, Faith, Salvation and The Word of God. Place the cards face down (so that you cannot see the pictures or words) and shuffle them around. Take it in turns to pick two cards. If you get a pair (e.g. shield and faith) you keep the cards. If not, put them back. The person with the most pairs wins.

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    Sunday Matters


    A Pastoral letter from the Chaplain

    imageLinked here is a Pastoral letter from the chaplain of Lorgues with Fayence the Rev Peter Massey. It reflects on our current situation as a chaplaincy both now and also looking ahead over the next weeks and months.
    Pastoral letter  March 16th 2020

    I was Just Thinking . . . . From Jack

    imageOver six years ago, Jack, a close personal friend and support, used to write for this website some articles to make us think.  He died in 2015 of Motor Neuron disease and was a great loss to this church which he was part of since it began in 20005. He had an extraordinary ministry, always on the edge of church. He was chaplain to U2 since the band was formed, and often toured with them ministering to the whole crew of over 150. Some of his articles are still relevant today and I will publish them here again from time to time.....enjoy "I was Just Thinking"
        

    "NIGHTCAP"

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    Starts this Wednesday evening   

    imageDo join us for 15 minutes each Wednesday evening to simply be still and be quiet and maybe learn a little about the amazing book of psalms.  

    You can find it here after 3.00pm   Night Cap May 6th psalm 121       ' I will lift up mine eyes to the hills"


    We don’t have to look hard in the current situation to see many evils: sickness, suffering, death and isolation. The last line of the prayer of Jesus offers this short, sharp prayer for deliverance. It is not wrong to ask God to save us from evil. To pray in this way is a sign of strength not weakness. To pray these words builds hope and resilience even in the midst of pain and disease. We cannot and do not pretend that all is right in the world. But each day we can place ourselves and those we love and the whole world under God’s protection.

    Luke 22.39–46

    39 He came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples followed him. 40 When he reached the place, he said to them, ‘Pray that you may not come into the time of trial.’ 41 Then he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, knelt down, and prayed, 42 ‘Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me; yet, not my will but yours be done.’ [[43 Then an angel from heaven appeared to him and gave him strength. 44 In his anguish he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down on the ground.]] 45 When he got up from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping because of grief, 46 and he said to them, ‘Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you may not come into the time of trial.’

    The seventh line of the Lord’s Prayer is vital. As we pray each day, ‘But deliver us from evil’, we build strength and resilience for every challenge we face, whether large or small. All too often, we give way at the first sign of opposition or difficulty.

    Jesus loves his disciples. Yet his love does not wrap us in cotton wool or take us out of a world in which we will face evil. We are called to share in God’s mission and that means being part of the great resistance.

    In Gethsemane, Jesus faces his greatest trial and prays for strength not to turn away from the cross. We, too, may face defining moments in our lives and ministries. We build our own strength for these key moments of our lives in the quiet daily disciplines of prayer, cultivating a deep resistance to evil and living against the tide.

    What have been the greatest trials and demands of your own life so far? What are they likely to be in the future?

    By the mystery of your holy incarnation;
    by your birth, childhood and obedience;
    by your baptism, fasting and temptation,
    good Lord, deliver us.


    From the Litany

    Talk about (or write or draw) some of the things that worry you or frighten you. God doesn’t promise to take away the things that make us frightened or anxious, but God does promise to always be with us. Try to learn this prayer: “God, you are with me. When I am frightened, you are with me. When I am worried, you are with me. You are always with me. Please give me your peace. Amen.”

                                                                                        

    SUNDAY SERVICES


    Though we may no longer be able to meet together on Sundays in our places of worship, this does not mean that we cannot be joined together in Spirit through the means of modern communications and social media.  Fortunately Church was never about buildings or institutions but about PEOPLE joined together through the power and presence of the Holy Spirit, and the Spirit has no limitations. So now we are going ONLINE with our worship and Sunday by Sunday we will post here on our website and on email our Sunday worship. 


    This is an exciting opportunity to reach out beyond our normal boundaries and also join together our dispersed community......we hope you will join us on Sundays at 11.00am French time for this.


    Easter Sunday    April 12th Sunday Worship

    Easter Sunday . . . . Watch the video here   

    The empty tombimage

    Luke 24 New International Version 

    Jesus Has Risen

    24 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. 2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, 3 but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. 4 While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. 5 In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? 6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 7 ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ” 8 Then they remembered his words.

    9 When they came back from the tomb, they told all these things to the Eleven and to all the others. 10 It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the others with them who told this to the apostles. 11 But they did not believe the women, because their words seemed to them like nonsense. 12 Peter, however, got up and ran to the tomb. Bending over, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he went away, wondering to himself what had happened.


    SUNDAY SERVICES

    Though we may no longer be able to meet together on Sundays in our places of worship, this does not mean that we cannot be joined together in Spirit through the means of modern communications and social media.  Fortunately Church was never about buildings or institutions but about PEOPLE joined together through the power and presence of the Holy Spirit, and the Spirit has no limitations. So now we are going ONLINE with our worship and Sunday by Sunday we will post here on our website and on email our Sunday worship. 


    This is an exciting opportunity to reach out beyond our normal boundaries and also join together our dispersed community......we hope you will join us on Sundays at 11.00am French time for this.


    Easter Sunday    April 12th Sunday Worship

    Palm Sunday . . . . Watch the video here 

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    Matthew 21:1-11 New International Version (NIV)

    Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King


    21 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me.  If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”
    This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:
    “Say to Daughter Zion,‘See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’ 
    The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road.  The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,
    “Hosanna[b] to the Son of David!”
    “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” 
    “Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
     When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”
    The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”



    I was Just Thinking . . . . From Jack

    imageI was thinking recently about the fairly familiar description of someone "coming out of the closet". I used the term with a friend and got a strange quizzical look. To him the words meant openly acknowledging one's sexuality. I meant something quite different - though I do confess enjoying leading him on a bit. I was saying to him that I had a decision to make about how much to talk freely about a particular health problem that I not shared with many people.

    So what are the meaning and nuances associated with "coming out" and "the closet"? So much has to do with personality! Some friends of mine are up front and communicate happily on Facebook and Twitter about all sorts of personal details. Others, and this I confess is the camp I am happy in, are reserved, private or even secretive about their lives.

    "Coming out" can be a wonderful escape - a prisoner released from captivity. But it can also be risky, nerve-wracking or dangerous. In some ways it can be both. Coming out about illness, for example, is an opportunity to share the burden of sickness. However, the response and reaction of others can be a serious additional burden to the sick person. I touched on this when thinking about sympathy and empathy.

    "Closets" are imprisoning, confining, punishing. On the other hand they can be secretive, secure, safe. We can be pushed into closets and we can create closets for ourselves. There are so many negatives involved - fear and guilt are probably at the core of most closets. It is interesting to see where churches and individual Christians stand in relation to enclosing their fellow men - believers and non-believers. Attitudes can revolve around judgement, disapproval, punishment rather than acceptance, forgiveness, love. The Gospel tells us that Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and called him out of the grave. Then he told the disciples to unwrap Lazarus and let him go. There is a great ministry for Christians in unwrapping those who are bound and setting them free. It is sad when Christians choose to bind and constrict those who Jesus would set free.

    As I say, I was just thinking. You may have it all sorted. If you have, can I urge you to think again, and then again  

     

  • A  Wider View

    Sacrament without boundaries: The Eucharist after Lockdown

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    Learning from Lockdown: rethinking eucharistic worship

    By the Rev Michael Graham

    For much of Christian history, eucharistic worship has been bounded by concepts of leader and location. Jesus – as an anointed leader – gathered people together in a specific location – an upper room – to impart to them food which drew them to feed on higher food: his body broken for them, his blood shed for them. In similar vein, ever since Christianity became formally instituted in the 4th Century, an anointed leader – an episcopally ordained representative of Jesus – has gathered people together in a specific location – an episcopally consecrated building – in order to preside in the distribution of bread and wine.

    Since the Reformation and earlier, there have, of course, been departures from this in non-episcopal traditions, but even in house churches the concepts of anointed leader and location prevail. Today, however, we find ourselves inhabiting not just a physical world, but a virtual one, in which location – and, to a certain extent, leader – are conceived of more broadly. Moreover, a coronavirus pandemic is upon us and is shaking all our institutions. Had the pandemic hit us as little as a decade ago, the mass virtual communication on which we now depend would not have been reliably in place. So what is God saying to his human creation, and to his Church, through the current coincidence of global pandemic and global virtual communication?

    Read full article here



    From Ebola to Haiti, here are 5 ways the Church has responded at times of national crisis

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    Over the last century, the Church has been at the forefront when natural disasters strike, supporting and comforting affected people. Tearfund’s CEO, Nigel Harris, describes the different ways Christians have responded, from Ebola to the Haiti earthquake, and says the coronavirus pandemic will be no different

    Local churches know the needs of their communities and how best to respond with the resources available to them when disasters strike. Where the need is greatest, you’ll find the church. Here are five examples from this century where we’ve seen the church going above and beyond:

    Read the full article from Premier here


    This week, 7 inspiring stories of Christians making a difference during lockdown


    The Coranavirus cab   "Florence" ?

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    How do you respond when you have so many people in your community needing to get to hospital appointments, but you need to keep to social distancing rules? Step forward the Ashburton Community Covid Response team and the ‘coronavirus cab’. The group from Devon, which includes Rt Rev Mark Rylands, an assistant bishop in the Diocese of Exeter, purchased an old black cab for £500 and is now using it to ferry elderly and vulnerable patients to and from hospital visits completely free of charge. It is thought the glass partition between driver and passenger will mean no infection can be passed on. Local people have been asked to come up with a name for the cab. As well as the inevitable ‘Cabby McCab Face’, a more serious suggestion of ‘Florence’ has been floated (after Florence Nightingale).

    This week, 7 inspiring stories of Christians making a difference during lockdown

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    Serving The Non-Digital Generation

     

    imageWhile it’s right that we celebrate how many churches have been able to move their services online, some people still don’t have computer – or even smartphone – access. Rev Ruth Frampton was determined not to lose connection with her parishes and instead launched a church service via telephone. Using a conference call facility she’s been joined by over 80 mostly elderly members of her network of churches. The 30-minute services, which include worship, readings and prayers, have received very positive feedback, with some even joining in from hospital.



    Being Church in the Community


    imageAs the country began to go into quarantine, Angela Barry was determined to ensure that the older people in her community didn’t feel alone. Along with her husband and three children, she set up a weekly free fruit and veg stall outside her house in Breightmet, Bolton, as well as delivering bags of fresh produce to those who need it most. “We were ordering some fruit and veg for ourselves and just ordered extra to put out a stall,” Angela told Premier Christianity 
     “We put it out for everyone to come and get what they needed.” Sons Joshua, 9, Ben, 7 and Isaac, 4 have been running the stall and the family says it’s created many opportunities for new relationships. Angela said, “It’s a brilliant chance for us to really show what Church is in our local community.”

    PPE and the love of Christ


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    Church makes masks, gowns to fight COVID-19 pandemic

    RIVERSIDE—Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) shortages have yielded an opportunity for one Riverside church to share the love of Christ with health care workers and emergency personnel.

    Over the past three weeks, Sandals Church has converted its in-house manufacturing facility—normally used to make furniture, signage and sermon props among other items—into a PPE production line to help battle the coronavirus pandemic.

    Working just 10 at a time to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19, church volunteers and staff have made more than 13,000 plastic gowns, 9,000 N95 masks and hundreds of plastic face shields. The PPE is packaged with a card that reads, “We’re praying for you! Provided and assembled by your friends from Sandals Church and local community volunteers.”

    “We love people,” said Ron McCoy, executive director of the Sandals Church Foundation. “We want to be a positive voice in a very hard season. We want to show people God in a very tangible way.”

    The PPE has been distributed to about two dozen health care and emergency management organizations, including hospitals, senior care facilities, rehabilitation facilities and police departments.


    Church Pastor delivers pizzas !

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    Ever since the government closed church buildings, the role of a church leader has inevitably changed. Finding himself with a little more time on his hands, Pastor Matthew Murray from Renew Church in Uttoxeter decided to take on a second job in order to raise money for his local foodbank. Pastor Murray is now a delivery driver for his local takeaway, Sergeant Peppers. He told Premier Christianity the idea “struck him like a bolt from heaven”. Not only is he using the funds for good, the opportunity has also allowed him to stay connected with his congregation. “People in our church will call up, make an order and request for me to deliver it. I get to see them for a few minutes and say, ‘I’m praying for you guys, how are you doing?’


    : 'Never Give up, Never despair'

    Queen addresses nation on VE 75th anniversary 

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    Watch again


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    imageimageBritain, Churchill marked the occasion by declaring 8 May a public holiday. People held parties, danced and sang in the streets. Huge crowds gathered in London, both on Whitehall to hear Churchill speak and outside Buckingham Palace where King George VI and the Royal Family appeared on the balcony. Day is recognised every year with street parties, community gatherings, and acknowledgement from the Armed Forces.

    The most recent significant celebrations were in 2015, when the 70th anniversary of VE Day was marked with three days of celebrations.

    The coronavirus outbreak means that there will be no street parties, parades or concerts this year, but there is plenty going on to celebrate.

    A national two minute silence will be take place at 11am, which will be broadcast on the BBC. This will give Britons the opportunity to pause and reflect, remembering the lives lost and sacrifices made in wartime.

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    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    It started in America !   

    The COVID-19 coronavirus has forced many groups to adapt and change the way they normally operate, including churches.

    imageOne behind the other, cars lined up in the parking lot of St. Ann’s Catholic Parish in Penticton, waiting for their turn to confess.

    Friday, April 10, served as the second time the Catholic Parishes of Penticton have offered drive-thru confessions, a new practice popping up in other areas of the province allowing individuals to practice their religion while social distancing.


    And it is now here in France

    imageA priest has started hearing drive-through confessions on Saturday mornings as a way of bringing spiritual comfort to people.

    Situated in a church parking area in Limoges, the “confessional” established by père David de Lestapis enables people to drive around a tent to where the priest, sitting on a chair, can hear them speak through the lowered car window. The open nature of the parking means that it is easy to check that no-one else can hear what is said.


    Something For Today from the OASIS


    The UK Blessing: Tim Hughes on when worship goes viral

    'The UK Blessing' video is set to reach . Tim Hughes, one of the worship leaders behind the project, speaks to Sam Hailes about the unexpected viral sensation


    imageThe video has had nearly one million views. What is your reaction to worship going viralIt's amazing! 'The Blessing' is a fantastic song written by a bunch of friends in America. And they've put this beautiful melody to this incredible blessing in the book of Numbers.


    There are over 65 churches involved, and they represent hundreds more. It's really just a small part of God's UK Church. Seeing them all come together to sing this over the UK - that God wants to bless people - is absolutely beautiful.

    Over the last six months, I've felt what God is doing in the Church, in terms of worship, is we're seeing the sound of his people singing. There's been lots of worship leaders that God has raised up and it's been beautiful, but I think actually the time has come when God is raising up his whole Church - the sound of his people - and not just one individual. I think this is just a little glimpse of what we're going to see much more of.At this unique and challenging time in the United Kingdom over 65 churches and movements, representing hundreds of others, have come together online to sing a blessing over our land.


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    Standing together as one, our desire is that this song will fill you with hope and encourage you. But the church is not simply singing a blessing, each day we're looking to practically be a blessing. Many of the churches included in this song have assisted with supplying over 400,000 meals to the most vulnerable and isolated in our nation since COVID-19 lockdown began. This alongside phone calls to the isolated, pharmacy delivery drops and hot meals to the NHS frontline hospital staff. Our buildings may be closed but the church is very much alive!  Virtual churches together choir

    Something For The Weekend from the OASIS

    This Saturday, Shirley and I should have been in the Royal Albert Hall for PROM PRAISE 2020.  Sadly, like everything else it was cancelled, but they are doing a Virtual Concert which we can all share online. 

                                                 Trailer for the Concert here

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    We have often shared and used their music on Sundays and many of those hymns and songs will be in this concert. So if you are interested, click on the link below which will take you to the relevant page, fill in your email, and you will be contacted shortly before the concert. I am sure it will also be available later as well.


    A Little Something For Cpt Tom from the Oasis

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        32,000,000 pounds for the N.H.S

    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    S.A.S.R.A.......What is it

    SASRA - stands for The Soldiers' & Airmen's Scripture Readers Association, read about it below

    Warren and Anna come and stay with us most years and Warren is in Christian Ministry wirh SASRA. Before their first visit we knew nothing about this important ministry but are now in touch with them all the time.imageThe Queen is their Patron, which helps underline how their work is valued,;....here is a little background to who and what they are.

    A brief look at the New Testament will show that Jesus Christ was often in touch with soldiers and was concerned for them personally and spiritually.

    Soldiers were also near Him when he died. Some remained quite unmoved by His sufferings but to the Centurion commanding the execution detail there came a great moment of spiritual insight that led to his clear confession, "This was the Son of God!".

    It is notable that the first Gentile church meeting took place in the Army quarter of another Roman Centurion, named Cornelius (Acts 10).

    imageIt remains as important now as it was then that Christians, following Jesus' example, should be concerned with the spiritual welfare of military personnel.


    HERE MORE ABOUT THEM HERE AND  

    PROJECT peace 2020 and other aspects of their work


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS


    And from Premier Christian Radio 

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    What Premier means to me

    image

    When Julie bought a car, she turned on the radio and was annoyed to realise it was tuned into Premier Praise. Not a Christian, and not remotely interested in listening to worship songs, this was the start of an amazing journey for Julie.

    For many years I was an organist and choir director in a church, but I had no faith at all. Then 20 years ago I walked away from the church, determined never to return.

    In April 2017 I changed my car and, as I set off to work on my first long journey in it, I turned on the radio. It seemed to be stuck on a station called Premier Praise. As I left the driveway, I said to my husband, Pete: “This radio’s stuck on some sort of Christian music station. I can’t think of anything worse.” Trying to change the station didn’t work; I just couldn’t get rid of it. I ended up listening to the music, prayers and Bible readings all the way from my home in Lancashire to Lincolnshire and then later on to Birmingham.

    Even though, over the following weeks, I reluctantly admitted that some of the songs weren’t too bad, I was certainly not going to be drawn into any sort of ‘religious stuff’. I told myself I didn’t need it and definitely didn’t want it. Even though I resisted, I began to find myself wondering what it would be like to be a Christian.

    Read the full article from PREMIER here

    LISTEN TO PREMIER RADIO LIVE       

    premier radio live


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    You might like to note this


    imageThis programme will be available shortly after broadcast April 26th

    "We had hoped"

    The Revd. Prof Jennifer Strawbridge and the Revd. Dr Steve Nolan explore the place of hope in times of despair. They reflect on the Road to Emmaus and how it speaks to us today.

    imageRelease date: Sunday 26th after Broadcast at 08.10

    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS


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    Daily Hope offers music, prayers and reflections as well as full worship services from the Church of England


    The Church of England has launched a free dial-in worship service to bring prayer to people's homes while churches are closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

    Daily Hope, which is available from Sunday, offers music, prayers and reflections as well as full worship services from the Church of England at the end of a telephone line.

    The national line is available 24 hours a day on 0800 804 8044.

    Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said the service has been primarily set up to support isolated Britons, especially the elderly, who have been unable to take advantage of the boom in online church services.

    The Archbishop added: "With many in our country on lockdown, it's important that we support those who are feeling lonely and isolated, whatever age they are."

    Callers to Daily Hope will hear a special greeting from the Archbishop, before being given several options to choose from such as hymns, prayers, reflections and advice.

    'Support for those feeling lonely and isolated'

    Although many churches nationwide are running services and prayer groups online, public worship remains banned under lockdown guidelines, and many older people do not have internet access.

    Daily Hope has also been set up in response to social distancing restrictions and self-isolation measures, and the accompanying loneliness which some may experience.

    According to Age UK, 49 per cent of older people view TV or a pet as their daily source of comfort and interaction.

    For some the coronavirus pandemic has ushered a reliance on technology to stay connected, but  figures state 2.5 million people aged 75 and above have never used the internet.


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    A Sydenham vicar will be running a full marathon in his clerical garb this Sunday to raise money for local families in need.

    imageOn the 26th April Reverend Edd Stock, of Holy Trinity, will be running 26.2 miles on his treadmill on the same day the London marathon was supposed to take place. 

    Ed has partnered with Lewisham Citizens - an alliance of faith, education, charity and community organisations to raise over £26,000 to support struggling households during lockdown.

    He told Premier he had been gearing up to run a marathon later in the year and wanted to do something positive to help the community.

    "I've just been doing my exercise in the morning and I was thinking: how can I raise money for these families and support these people? I thought there must be something I can do...why not buy a treadmill," he said.

    Walking in the light of God, African Childrens choir

    God still moves in mysterious ways


    BROTHER SISTER LET ME SERVE YOU!  Hymn

    It went viral on facebook  4,000.000 views, click on picture

    imageA 94-year-old care home resident has captured the hearts of the nation after bursting into tears when a carer gifted him a cushion with his late wife’s picture on it.Ken Benbow lost his wife of 71 years, Aida, just nine months ago, and has since fallen asleep next to a picture of her in a glass frame each night.

    His care worker Kia Tobin, 17, wanted to make sure the navy veteran could cuddle up to his loved one once more, so kindly presented him a cushion with a picture of Aida on it. He went on to explain that he and his wife never wanted to come to a nursing home, but as soon as they arrived at Thistleton Lodge care home in Preston, Lancashire, they loved it instantly. Benbow broke down while talking to presenters Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid, explaining that he had met his wife in Liverpool at a dance, and that they were “made for each other”.

    During the interview, which was meant to last five minutes but went on to last 20, his carer spoke about the moment she gave him the gift: “It was amazing. It was just so rewarding. It was something small that made him so happy.”The 17-year-old has recently moved into the care home amid the coronavirus pandemic to help look after the residents.The touching moment was captured on camera and posted by the care home on Facebook.

    It has since been viewed more than four million times – prompting a lot of praise for the teenager’s sweet gesture.

    .BROTHER SISTER LET ME SERVE YOU Hymn


    God moves in mysterious ways


    As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell on my face and heard a voice speaking.  Ezekial 1:28

    image

    Families across the UK have been creating these gloriously technicolour artworks for their windows or driveways to lift the spirits of those passing by.

    The trend appears to have been started by a group of mums in Bari, Italy, but Kezia Roberts, 42, from Horsforth, Leeds, was one of the first to bring this cheery idea to the UK which she has called ‘Chase the Rainbow’.

    Roberts, who previously organised art walks around her local town, was inspired to kickstart the venture in her area after hearing about the mums in Italy and thinking the rainbows were a “beautiful example of trying to bring everybody together as a community”.

    She posted the idea on Facebook and says that people in her area “didn’t need much persuading” to get on board. ”[They’re] making the kids happy and making the adults happy as well, just so they’ve got something to view when they’re doing that walk around,” image

    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    YOU'LL NEVER WALK ALONE, 

    click here and also on the picture for different photos of Tom


    imageNot this Sundays story of the Road to Emmaeus, but the remarkable expression of community response during the current crisis.

    Captain Tom Moore's charity single for the NHS has shot to number 1 on the UK iTunes chart, as the 99-year-old war veteran's fundraising total passed a whopping £22million.

    Tom's collaborated with singer Michael Ball for a version of You'll Never Walk Alone, originally recorded by Rodgers and Hammerstein in 1945 - which has become the anthem of medical staff during the pandemic.

    The heroic 99-year-old WW2 war veteran, who has raised funds for the NHS by doing 100 laps of his garden, introduces the track, saying: "Hold your head up high and don't be afraid of the dark".image

    It has narrowly pipped Vera Lynn and Katherine Jenkins rendition of the We'll Meet Again to the top spot, a track originally sung by the 103-year old for British soldiers in 1939 following the outbreak of WW2.

    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    imageTHE MIDDLE EAST broadcaster Sat-7 is ramping up the production of special programmes offering health information and addressing the spiritual questions people have about the Coronavirus pandemic.

    With Christians celebrating Easter in seclusion, Sat 7 broadcast‘Easter messages and Christian hope’ to its 25 million viewers in the Middle East and North Africa.

    In a new video, International CEO Rita El-Mounayer speaks of the specific worries many have concerning how the pandemic can be stopped in high-density cities like Cairo, in refugee camps, and in war zones like Yemen and Libya.

    After ‘God, Fear and the Coronavirus’, a televised discussion from Cairo, was watched by 160,000 people on social media alone, a weekly discussion exploring the character of God and encouraging faith over fear is being made with Christian leaders from different denominations.

    From Beirut, a new live talk show with Tony Franjieh, a well-known Lebanese TV host, is presenting meditations, testimonies and worship music, with a space for viewers to call for prayers or engage with the speakers in the studio.

    The station broadcast Easter messages from almost 30 Christian leaders in the region, and the presenters of their children’s channel have filmed messages of reassurance from their homes.


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    YOU DECIDE   FAITHFUL OR FOOLISH  ??

    Coronavirus: US pastor who said 'God is larger than this virus' and defied social distancing dies of COVID-19

    imageThe photograph shows him addressing his congregation in Richmond, Virginia, five days after state governor Ralph Northam urged people to "avoid non-essential gatherings of more than 10 people".

    He told his congregation: "I firmly believe that God is larger than this dreaded virus."

    It is unclear how long after the 22 March address he became ill with the virus but church elder Bryan Nevers announced the death during an Easter sermon, a video of which was posted on Facebook.

    Andrea Bocelli: Music For Hope - 

    Recorded Easter Sunday 2020 at the Cathedral Dormo di Milan

    imageItalian tenor Andrea Bocelli has performed a live Easter concert in the empty Duomo cathedral in Milan to promote a message of hope for Italy and the world as it confronts the coronavirus pandemic.It was streamed around the world to celebrate Easter and encourage hope.

    This might be the best half hour you spend this week.


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    NOTRE DAMES CATHEDRAL PARIS holds a small Good Friday service amid coronavirus lockdown almost a year after the fire

    Nearly a year after a massive blaze devastated the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, only seven people attended a special televised Good Friday service at the 850-year-old church.


    imageThe ceremony began Friday morning, with Paris Archbishop Michel Aupetit entering the cathedral and presenting an important relic, the Crown of Thorns of Christ, which survived the fire."A year ago, the cathedral was destroyed. Today the country is ravaged by a pandemic. There's always a message of hope, and this celebration at the heart of the cathedral will be the sign of our hope,
    imageThe 40-minute Good Friday service also featured classical musician Renaud Capuçon playing the violin. Actors Philippe Torreton and Judith Chemla, who also sang, (listen to it here) delivered readings of Christian text.                              Left,  Fire on April 15th 2019         
    imageNOTRE DAME'S golden altar cross is seen glowing among the ashes in a symbol of hope after a massive inferno ripped through the 850-year-old cathedral.  The iconic photograph was taken by one of the firemen trying to extinguish the fire.

    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    Easter isn't Cancelled,

    imageEven with the coronavirus pandemic shutting down many churches across the globe.

    That was the central message Saturday from Queen Elizabeth, who gave a two-minute address on Saturday in hopes of lifting spirits for the millions worldwide who are stuck at home due to COVID-19.

    "This year, Easter will be different for many of us, but by keeping apart we keep others safe," the Queen, who turns 94 later this month, said. "But Easter isn't canceled; indeed, we need Easter as much as ever.

    "We know that coronavirus will not overcome us. As dark as death can be — particularly for those suffering with grief — light and life are greater."

    Throughout the video, an illuminated candle is shown as the Queen is heard speaking. That candle is central to her Easter message.

    "Many religions have festivals which celebrate light overcoming darkness," she said. "Such occasions are often accompanied by the lighting of candles. They seem to speak to every culture, and appeal to people of all faiths and of none.

    States are restricting Easter gatherings amid COVID-19:  Churches and lawmakers are pushing back

    On birthdays, anniversaries and countless other days of celebration, candles help unite us, the Queen said. Easter is no different, even in quarantine.

    "As darkness falls on the Saturday before Easter day, many Christians would normally light candles together," she said. "In church, one light would pass to another spreading slowly and then more rapidly as more candles are lit. It's a way of showing how the good news of Christ's resurrection is being passed on from the first Easter by every generation until now."

    We will succeed

    Queen Elizabeth tells British people self-isolation ‘the right thing to do’   Watch here In a rare televised address the monarch praised NHS staff and car workers and told the UK “if we remain united and resolute, then we will overcome it.” Meanwhile, in France the number of people that need intensive care continued to fall even as the death toll climbed.

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    Tom Wright on being a christian during covid19

    imageThe author of over seventy books, Tom Wright, former Bishop of Durham is highly regarded in academic and theological circles and in this conversation on Premier Christian Radio helps us put what we are experiencing into context. He also helps us answer some of the fundamental  questions that, we either have for ourselves, or may even be asked of us as christians.  Make a cup of tea and invest half an hour to listen to what he has to say,.....it makes sense.. ..click on the video below to see and hear the interview.
    image


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    Chris Walley writes,


    A not so gentle reminder? 
    At this time of pandemic, we have all I imagine been monitoring how much we cough. Those of us who suffer from allergies probably find it particularly troubling because, at least around Lorgues, the Cupressus pollen is still around in quantity. 

    imageYet there is another form of coughing or throat clearing that we are all familiar with. This is where you go in to some shadowed or ill-lit room– a library or perhaps a church – with a friend or colleague and start talking, perhaps on some private or confidential matter. Suddenly, from behind a high-backed chair or from a dark corner, you hear a distinct and unmuffled quiet cough. You are being reminded that you are not alone.  

    What God is doing with this appalling pandemic is a good question, but now is not the time to pursue it in detail. Nevertheless, it is not unreasonable to suggest that one aspect is that God is not very gently reminding us that human beings are not perhaps the masters of the universe that we thought we were. You see, looking back at the world before COVID-19 it’s easy to identify an extraordinary global state of mind. Almost universally the mood was that of arrogance, a proud belief that in the 21st-century human beings were firmly in charge. Business, morality, politics: everything proceeded on the assumption that that we could dismiss the very idea of God and see human beings alone as being the master of all things. 

    This  view has been well crystallised by an Israeli academic, Yuval Noah Harari, who has written two very popular books on humanity in the 21st century. The first was Sapiens (which I found sufficiently flawed that my copy ended up on the ‘Servez-vous!’ book shelves outside the Lorgues cinema) and a successor which carries imagethe title of Homo Deus, a phrase which, almost blasphemously, translates as ‘The Human God’. According to a summary on the author’s website it expresses the view that having ‘reined in famine, plague and war’ ‘humankind will next seek immortality, boundless happiness and divine powers of creation’. 

     Ah yes. Did I hear a quiet cough from somewhere? 


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS


    The archbishop of Canterbury has said people face a choice between “pulling up the drawbridge and looking after ourselves” or turning towards others in the coming weeks as the coronavirus crisis escalates.

    imageHis message was delivered in a special church service recorded at Lambeth Palace and broadcast via Facebook, BBC Radio 4, and 39 local BBC radio stations. The Church of England has suspended public services of worship, but thousands of parishes have turned to livestreaming morning services.

    Justin Welby said: “At difficult times we have a choice. We can focus on fear, on ourselves and what we cannot do. Or we can turn to God and let God lead us into praying for the world, and let prayer flow into us, taking creative and loving action.

    “That’s what we want to do today, to remind ourselves that life carries on and that there is much to celebrate in our communities.

    “To listen to the voice of God’s caring love for us, and his encouragement to turn ourselves towards others, and how we can care for those around us, in person or virtually.”

    He added: “The temptation is to pull up the drawbridge and just look after ourselves. That’s the kind of thing that leads to panic buying, to growing fear, and to spiritual and emotional as well as physical isolation.”

    As part of a national day of prayer and action on Sunday, the C of E has urged people to place a lighted candle in their windows at 7pm. It is also asking people to “ring someone who is isolated and vulnerable; buy an extra item and place it in your local food bank, keep your night shelters open”.

    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS


    The Church of England has published five tips for tackling loneliness and isolation:

    image1)Light a candle, if safe, and pray for hope, faith and strength to keep loving and caring for each other during this time of struggle.

    2)Talk about how you feel. This may be difficult if you are self-isolating, but do use the telephone, internet, and social media. If you need to contact a counsellor this can be arranged by your GP, or via local agencies, or privately. Samaritans are there24 hours a day, every day, and it’s free to call them on 116 123.

    3)Focus on the things that you can change, not on the things you can’t.

    4)Look after yourself – physically, emotionally, spiritually. Plan in things that you enjoy at regular intervals during the day – a TV programme, a phone call, a book, a favourite dish, a game.

    5)Look after others. Even if only in small ways, but do what you can: a smile, a kind word, writing a letter or an email.

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    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    image.

    Travel for 10 Years

    Ian , Anna and Neil set up Go Provence 10 years ago.  They facilitate holidays and travel for people who need help and support.  They support people with autism, aspergers, learning disabilities and other related conditions.  and have an amazing ministry and business creating group and individual holidays all over the world. 

    http://www.goprovence.co.uk/

    Their work is an inspiration to those of us who know and who have supported them over the years and their children were baptised up in the lake near Quinson.

    They are now based up near Riaz and keep in touch with us and have sent a video to keep us all connected and let us know about family life during SOCIAL ISOLATION.   

    Link Here


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS


    A letter to the UK from Italy: this is what we know about your future

    An author in Rome describes what to expect based on her experiences of lockdown, it is frank, factual and revealing

    imageThe acclaimed Italian novelist Francesca Melandri, who has been under lockdown in Rome for almost three weeks due to the Covid-19 outbreak, has written a letter to fellow Europeans “from your future”, laying out the range of emotions people are likely to go through over the coming weeks.

    I am writing to you from Italy, which means I am writing from your future. We are now where you will be in a few days. The epidemic’s charts show us all entwined in a parallel dance.

    We are but a few steps ahead of you in the path of time, just like Wuhan was a few weeks ahead of us. We watch you as you behave just as we did. You hold the same arguments we did until a short time ago, between those who still say “it’s only a flu, why all the fuss?” and those who have already understood.

    Read the full article in the Guardian here


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    image


    Atheist Doctor In Italy Turns To God 

    A testimony by Julian Urban, 38 years old, Doctor in Lombardy

    Never in my darkest nightmares did I imagine that I would have seen and lived through what has been happening here in our hospital for the last three weeks. And the nightmare only grows; the river becomes bigger and bigger. At the beginning only a few arrived, then dozens, and then hundreds, and now we are no longer doctors, we have become mere sorters who decide who should live and who must be sent home to die, even if they are people who have paid Italian taxes for their whole life. Up until two weeks ago, my colleagues and I were atheists; this was normal because we are doctors and we have learned that science proves that God does not exist. I always laughed at my parents when they went to church.

    Nine days ago, a 75-year-old pastor came to us for medical help. He was a kind man, he had grave respiratory problems, but he had a Bible with him and it impressed us that he was reading the Bible to the people who were dying and holding their hands.

    We were all tired, discouraged doctors, psychologically and physically spent, and so we found that we were listening to him.

    Now we must admit: as human beings we have reached our limits, there is nothing more we can do, and more people are dying every single day. And we are exhausted. Two of our colleagues have died and others are infected.

    We realized that we have reached the limits of what man can do. We need God, and we have begun to ask for his help, when we have a few moments free. We speak among ourselves and we cannot believe that we who were fierce atheists are now seeking for interior peace by asking the Lord to help us to resist so that we can take care of the sick. Yesterday the 75-year old pastor died. Despite the fact that in the last three weeks we have had over 120 people die in our unit and we are all exhausted and feel destroyed, he succeeded, despite his own condition and our own difficulties, to bring us a PEACE that we no longer hoped to find.

    The pastor went to the Lord, and soon we will follow him if things continue like this.


    A Little Something For Today from the OASIS

    I See your True Colours

    Recorded under individual isolation regulations, Camden choir managed to produce virtual music.The words express the outburst of community spirit and human compassion that surely lies within us all and just needs releasing.....enjoy



    Updates from the Diocese

    Here is a video message from Bishop Robert about the Corona Virus

    imageHe speaks to us all from his office at home.  Both diocesan offices are closed but the work of the diocese carries on despite all the restrictions.

    There are about 45 countries in the diocese so his job is massive. Dealing with all the different jurisdictions alone is an huge challenge so we were indeed fortunate to have him here in Lorgues last year for our annual Ascension gathering.


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    Coronavirus: Public health advice

     

    In this column you will be able to link to the Diocesan advice page

    • Sources of official guidance, health advice, and support provided by the World Health Organisation, EU and national governments.
    • Advice covering how to wash your hands, and guides to coping with stress during the COVID-19 outbreak.
    • Links to find official public health advice provided by national governments across every country in the Diocese in Europe, and the UK. 

    The Diocese in Europe is not responsible for the content of external websites.

    Latest update: 20 March 2020






















  • News From the Vine


    image

    Court orders France to lift ban on religious services


    imageFrance's highest administrative court has ruled that the government must lift a blanket ban on meetings at places of worship imposed as part of measures to combat the coronavirus.

    After receiving complaints from several individuals and associations, the Council of State said on Monday that such a ban on freedom of worship caused "a damage that is serious and manifestly illegal".

    It told the government to lift the ban within the next eight days.

    Under France's strict lockdown, places of worship were closed but when phase 1 of the lifting of lockdown began on May 11th places of worship were allowed to to reopen - but not hold services.

     

    Virtual Ascension  2020  May 21st  

    image

    Departing and Returning : with Archdeacon Meurig.

    Needless to say our usual Ascension Celebration welcoming the Riviera Chaplaincies to Lorgues cannot take place this year as we work within the government guidelines for gatherings, but we will be celebrating online and involving as many people as possible.  imageArchdeacon Meurig is our invited guest this year, sadly he will not be with us but has recorded an Ascension Reflection for us which we can patch into our service.

    Readings and intercessions are provided by other Riviera chaplaincies and we will make the service as available as possible through the chaplains and through contact lists, so do pass this on.
    The service is also here on this website for anyone to access     ASCENSION  SERVICE 20 20                                                                               

    imageThy Kingdom Come is a global prayer movement that invites Christians around the world to pray between Ascension Day (21 May) and Pentecost (31 May) for more people to come to know Jesus.

    Praying for people to come to know the love, hope and peace found in Christ is at the heart of Thy Kingdom Come.

    Daily Prayer for Thy Kingdom Come is a great way to set up regular, daily patterns of prayer to hold these people in prayer – whether you are doing so on your own, as a household, or joining with a small group or as a church virtually.

    Download our FREE Daily Prayer app for Thy Kingdom Come app on Android and Apple
    Purchase our Daily Prayer for Thy Kingdom Come booklets in single, 10 and 50 packs

    There resource is available in a range of offline and free online formats:

    The booklet – in full-colour and complete with services, psalms and readings – is available now from Church House Publishing for just £1.99 with Free UK Delivery when you order online 

    The free app for iOS and Android – containing audio for Morning, Evening, Day and Night Prayer from the booklet for all 11 days. The app has been updated with 2020 Sunday psalms and readings and a new feature that allows you to set reminders for any or all the services at times that suit you.

    A podcast featuring all eight hours of the Daily Prayer for Thy Kingdom Come audio is also launching soon.

    Smart speaker – from Thursday 21 May (Ascension Day), you can also get Alexa and Google Home to ‘Ask the Church of England for today’s Thy Kingdom Come’ to hear a short service of Prayer During the Day (before 7pm) and Night Prayer (after 7pm) throughout the 11 days.

    Watch a special Thy Kingdom Come Pentecost Service with the Archbishop of Canterbury and a range of other contributors from 9am on Sunday 31st May


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    Justin Welby talks about when churches might re-open and  of enjoying online services in a comfortable chair 

    from Premier News


    "My takeaway is I've been able to concentrate more easily. Being an Anglican, I'm usually a bit more comfortable in my own home than I am in a pew, which is, I think, designed by some 18th century back specialist who lacked business and wanted more bad backs! 


    Full article and video interview here

    He speaks of challenges; being away from family and seeing colleagues fall ill among the biggest.

    "Unmitigated evil" is how the Archbishop refers to Covid-19, a virus which at the time of writing has taken 19,506 lives in the UK alone.

    The Anglican leader has seen its impact first hand, supporting the chaplaincy service at his local hospital. He also has concerns for how it'll hit the Global South. For all its challenges though, he believes it is creating opportunities for the Church.

    image"I think one of the big effects is there's a renewal of the sense that we all belong to Christ," he says. "John 17: 'The world will see that we're one' and I hope we can build on that."

     

    Jack Reflects on Sundays Reading from John 14


    imageI was just thinking... recently of those great debates that seem relevant to many age groups and backgrounds. On TV I watched one such discussion. It was on the old reliable of Religion versus Science. Panellists came armed with their passions, their preconceived notions, their fixed beliefs. There seemed little or no chance for anyone to be persuaded, converted or changed. Like rutting musk oxen the studio reverberated clashing heads and rock hard opinions. Even co-religionists and immovable scientists disputed with their own sympathisers. Arguments became hotter and more discordant. The panellists were going to leave the TV Station reinforced in the opinions they brought with them. Stalemate!

    I was interested to hear people on both sides of the argument starting a sentence with the words, 'I believe'. The word 'I' was pretty telling. Egos had their place in the discussion. I found myself thinking there must be a better way than reinforcing opposition. Why should religion threaten science and vice versa?

    imageMaybe the words of Jesus offer an answer. Jesus said, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life.' Religion and science both search for the way and for life. The key to both their success lies in honesty. It strikes me that scientists and theologians both fall short of being honest when they merely search for whatever will support those ideas they would like to be true rather than what proves to be true. An honest search for truth will leave both sides open to the possibility that they will discover the unexpected, the unpopular, the undesirable. It is not just a matter of endorsing their pet theories at whatever cost to truth.

    In our family we have a way of dealing with questions to which we have no answer. We add the words, 'I wonder' to the question. Therefore challenging - almost aggressive - topics become opportunities for shared wonder and not a matter of winners and losers.


    News From the Vine

    Ringing out for Peace

    image
    In association with the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers, bells in cathedrals, churches and other locations  rang out at 7pm in a collective celebration of peace. The sound of bells is deeply rooted in British culture, providing the soundtrack to historic moments – calling us to pray, to work, to arms, to celebrate and, in times of crisis, to come together. Church bells rang throughout Britain and around the world in celebration of the peace and friendships we share today.


    Just a thought as we clap every Thursday


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    Sgt Colin Shackleton, named on the above memorial in a small French Normandy Village, was my Uncle. I never knew him, his plane came down over France 18th April 1944 and the whole crew was killed.He was 21, one of the oldest in that crew and he was the Pilot..

    Of course that's my story,  and you probably have your own, because few families were untouched  by those tragic events and the suffering and loss.

    As we compare those days to what is being experienced now across the world inevitably comparisons are made and maybe through those events long ago, we can appreciate more significantly those on today's "frontline" and the losses being experienced and the trauma for NHS staff and families.  It will take a great deal of healing and hopefully we will all be more sensitive to the needs of others and that it will go beyond May 11th     Peter

    image

    Why our churches can’t go back to normal 

    Online church is here to stay, says Chris Bright, as he suggests church leaders need to think now about a post-lockdown world

    image

    In Lewis Carol’s classic novel, Through The Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There, Alice climbs up on the mantlepiece, goes through the mirror and emerges into a new world where everything is reversed.

    Sound familiar?

    Having followed much of the rest of the world and gone into lockdown, the UK - including the UK Church - has gone through the looking-glass, and entered a world that feels almost as opposite to what Alice encountered.

    Pastors across the country stopped being pastors as they knew it and immediately became online ministers. Churches that didn’t have an online presence went online overnight. Pastors who didn’t believe in livestreaming their services got their mobile phones out and joined the rest of us. Small group leaders who believed you need to be physically present in the room for real discipleship to take place suddenly started holding Zoom meetings.

    It’s not as though the Church hasn’t gone through previous looking-glasses. When the early Church met together in Jerusalem (Acts 15) they went into the new land of Gentiles being welcomed into the church. Once they went through, they couldn’t go back. When Constantine became a Christian, the Church went through another looking-glass, albeit not necessarily a positive one, but it couldn’t go back. When the printing press was invented, and William Tyndale started translating the Bible into the common tongue, the Church went through another looking-glass. It could never go back.

    Covid-19 is the Church’s looking-glass of our generation, and we can’t go back.

     Read full article FROM PREMIER here


    Good news from Notre Dames


    imageI speak with Brother Michael, our Orthodox classical guitarist monk, most days. and I am  now allowed to visit him.  There are very strict regulations and my first visit is on Tuesday so we will see how that goes.  I have asked him to bring his guitar with him as we will probably meet in the garden, suitably distanced, but I will get him to play a bit and video him and put that up here.

    He has struggled a bit with the isolation, even the dining room is closed so the residents are in their rooms most of the time, but he does have his phone, so if you would like to give him a quick ring to cheer him upand keep him going, his number  is 06 17 59 70 43.

     An interview on Premier worth listening to 

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    Amy Orr-Ewing is an evangelist and apologist with the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics. She is a regular and challenging speaker on Premier Christian Radio. In the interview above she thinks through that time-worn question,  Where is God in the Suffering and puts it into both historical and current context.Listen to the interview here


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    Ascension  2020  May 21st 

    Needless to say our usual Ascension Celebration welcoming the Riviera Chaplaincies to Lorgues cannot take place this year as we work within the government guidelines for gatherings, but we will be celebrating online and involving as many people as possible.  Archdeacon Meurig was our invited guest this year so sadly will not be with us but has agreed to record an Ascension Reflection for us which we can patch into our service.

    We are waiting for clarification on meeting here  at Arc-en-Provence, but at the moment think this is possible, and if you would like to be part of the small group that is allowed to meet, do contact me or Gillian. We would probably need to hold and record the service the day before on Wednesday 20th and then put it out online next morning, but more on the exact details later  so WATCH THIS SPACE                                                                                            

    PSHF Update from the Philippines

    Richard speaking at Arc-en-Provence
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    Every year our Harvest Collection is donated to Richard Foster's ministry and project in the Phillipines,which helps individuals set up small self-sustaining businesses to give them hope and and a living.  Richard writes to us to update us on the situation with Covid19 and his charity.



    Dear Peter,

    It was good to talk yesterday. . Here is a short update on PSHF which you might like to post on the website:

    image" I have been quite busy because we are assisting people with needs stemming from the lockdown in our project areas. Our most recent project was to assist 98 families in Bacolod with small cash amounts and detergent. Their counterpart was to bring in 5 PET bottles each for proper recycling. As for the detergent, we bought in bulk and distributed 300 gram amounts wrapped in newspaper; by so doing the recipients would not be buying detergent in sachets.

    Post lockdown, we are planning to encourage small part-time business start-ups in our project areas providing detergents, shampoos etc to sell at a discount to sachets and thus reduce plastics being burnt or going to landfills. Analyn, our loan officer in Bohol is currently conducting interviews near her home in Maribojoc to gather life style information for the purposes of preparing a business plan."


    I have photos of three of the recipient families (para 1) which I shall send by separate email. I also have a new project which I have allocated to the Lorgues Fellowship to send to you.

    Blessings to you all,

    Richardimage


    ABIDE WITH ME  

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    A reflective piece contributed by Lindsay

    sung by Audrey Assad  and a letter from Brother David SSJE

    My dear Friends,

    The coronavirus has turned our worlds upside-down. Many of us have lost our jobs, our sense of security, or our loved ones.  Our daily routines have been disrupted. The people on whom we depend are now separated from us. Some of us are suffering from isolation, while others of us have too much family or community time! We are all concerned about what this virus will mean for our futures: for our jobs or careers, our social lives, our finances, our organizations or businesses, our churches, and our happiness.

    We are finding solidarity with others around the world in our suffering, which may turn out to be a great gift if we recognize our oneness and mutual interdependence. But it is coming at a high cost.

    How do we respond to these disruptions, losses and uncertainties? Where do we turn for support and encouragement, for consolation and hope?

    In John’s gospel, Jesus speaks intimately and lovingly to his friends, knowing that he will soon be separated from them: “Abide in me as I abide in you,” he tells them (Jn 15:4). He knows that dark days are ahead. He knows their faith will be tested. He knows they will suffer. He tells them to “abide” in him.

    We can understand this “abiding” as an expression of deep commitment and intimate communion. The Greek word that is used here in the original text has a sense of toughness about it. It’s as if Jesus is saying, “Hang in there with me, and I’ll hang in there with you,” or “Stick it out with me and I’ll stick it out with you.” The word is usually translated as “abide” or “remain,” but it has this edgy quality about it.

    I believe his words here are meant to convey both solace and challenge. We can abide in him as a place of refuge and safety. His love surrounds and protects us. It holds us steady and offers a deep peace that enables us to face great challenges with courage and strength. He abides in us. We find our home in him, just as he has made his home in us. We are forever joined in love and communion. As St Paul says, “Nothing can separate us from the love of God” (Rom 8:35-39).

    But these words also offer a challenge. The purpose of this “abiding” is to make our lives fruitful. There is work to be done and Jesus tells us that we are incapable of doing this work in our own strength. For this reason we need to be joined to him and to his strength; without him we can do nothing.

    I’ve been reflecting on these two dimensions of Jesus’ call to “abide in me as I abide in you,” drawing consolation from Jesus’ nearness in these confusing times, and asking what he wants me/us to do in response to the peculiar challenges of our day. The call is to rest and to respond, to find solace and to find a sense of mission or purpose. 

    What does “abiding” mean to you? What implications does it have for you now, in these disorienting and uncertain times?

    God bless you all,

    Br. David Vryhof, SSJE
    Assistant Superior

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    The future church: not dying, not merely surviving but thriving ?

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    Chris Walley writes as he reflects on the impact of Covid19 on the local church.


    On the way ahead 
    After the critical battle of El Alamein in 1942 Winston Churchill famously observed “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.” Where exactly we are in the appalling COVID-19 pandemic is unclear but certainly people are beginning starting to think not just about the end, but what lies beyond.

    I’m in touch with people in a variety of church fellowships both in France and elsewhere and I’m beginning to hear some of the questions that are being raised about that future. First, two pieces of bad news. First, it’s difficult to see how we’re going back to what we were: the world has changed. Second, not every church is going to survive. The many churches that were already struggling with high upkeep costs and small, elderly congregations are going to face a very difficult time indeed. 

    One factor that, at the moment, is difficult to assess is whether people who have lost the habit of attending their local church will choose to return. That is made hard to predict because of the way that the present crisis has forced the creation of ‘online churches’ some of which will probably persist in some form or another beyond the present crisis. I think what we have achieved here in Lorgues at very short notice is actually quite impressive – well done Peter – but there are some churches, gifted with professionals in the technology industry, who in several continents are building a excellent and powerful online presence. If their online churches continue after the pandemic, they could present a challenge to many established ‘physical’ churches. 

    imageYou can well imagine someone saying, as they lie snug under their duvets on some cold winter Sunday, ‘why should I struggle to attend my freezing mediaeval local church when I can sit on my sofa in my dressing gown with a cup of coffee and watch a lively online service?’ It’s a good question .....READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE

    WHAT ABOUT US?

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    COVID-19 has thrust many churches onto their heels, left to grab whatever technology might keep them from stumbling into non-existence completely,communication is key

    All of a sudden, features such as on-website live-streaming, digital giving, church apps, and church management systems have become not luxury items for tech-forward churches, but safeguards for every church. If COVID-19 is the iceberg, church tech contains the lifeboats.

    However, what most churches don’t know is that the world has been setting churches up for this transition for a long time — and it would have happened, COVID-19 or not. Even though COVID-19 is at the forefront of the world's frontal lobe, we should not attribute to COVID-19 what can just as substantially be attributed to culture.

    imageTechnology is changing the way the world works. We were primed for a revolutionary change before the pandemic. Businesses have been revolutionized. Families and lifestyles have been reconceived and transformed by the iPhone. The church was one of the last remaining institutions to remain mostly unchanged.

    Like most churches we need to address the issues and questions  and not get left behind.....the digital train is leaving the station, do we want to be on board the train or left on the platform?


    How churches communicate with their congregants is transforming. 

    How visitors are using Google to find reputable churches is evolving. 

    How small groups and church events are organized and marketed is being consolidated into mobile-first models. 

    How churches raise money, automate tithing, and implement eCommerce tools into their fundraising strategies is progressing at light speed.

    What is the consequence of the technological revolution in churches?

    Don't shoot the messenger




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    I attended an online church, here’s what happened

    EVERYDAY CHURCH a London based UK church has launched an experimental ‘online congregation’. Could this be the future? Sam Hailes logged on to see what church in the digital age might look like.

    The countdown video begins, the music is turned up loud and I’m getting ready to worship God. But I’m not in London’s latest megachurch. I’m sitting in the comfort of my own home, on the sofa. Church has gone digital, and the ramifications are significant: It’s now possible to attend church in your underpants.

    Everyday Church (which has ‘real life’ congregations in Wimbledon, Kingston and Southfields) launched its online-only congregation in September. Participants visit everyday.online at 4.30pm or 6pm on a Sunday, and join in with the service.

    What happens during the service?

    Unlike some churches who livestream their services, Everyday have chosen to pre-record all their content. The online church pastor welcomes you to the church through a pre-recorded video message. Everyday church’s worship band then play songs – again you’re watching a pre-recorded video. And then a sermon is given, which needless to say, is pre-recorded.  

    read full article here to see the positives and the negatives of online church


    Pray with Whatsapp!

    Bob and Isobel Pritchatt are hosts to a prayer and bible study group at their home near Le Muy. The current Covid situation has encouraged them to text and pray together through a Whatsapp group….Isobel writes

    imageWe arrived back home in France at 6.30 am on the first of April, anything but April fools! We were in England when the shut-down began. In reality, we should have been on a cruise in the Caribbean but we were housebound with our family.  It became evident that this arrangement could not continue and that we needed to get back home to France. Asking the Le Muy group to pray for us, we set out on a 23hr journey and with the right papers, were allowed back into France.

    As organisers of the Le Muy Group within the Lorgues Church, we had planned a summer midweek programme based on Song of Songs, followed by pizzas. Clearly, the French lockdown has changed all that! The summer visitors cannot make their pilgrimage to Provence and even our permanent residents are securely locked up. Consequently, we have developed a group community through WhatsApp and are being very supportive to each other. However, the question still hangs above our comfortable prison, “What can I do?” imageYes,we can phone friends and family, watch televisions programmes that we would normally avoid or create amazing lunches out of nothing. But is that enough? From within the group it has emerged that perhaps we can be life changers. We can pray. On Thursday, the 2nd  April, everyone inside the group agreed to pray at 6 pm UK time. In James chapter 5, it says that, ‘the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective’. We prayed for those who are sick, that the Covid-19 virus would initiate a change in world values and we would be given a chance to examine our political correctness and compare it with God’s.

    We can fall into the habit of thinking that prayers are for others to say and that we just add ‘ Amen’ at the end. Yet, all who believe in Jesus Christ have access to the ear of God. And one thing we can be sure of is that His desires His people to come closer to Him through prayer.

    Let us all pray We are all invited to talk to God our Father, with whom all is possible. We now pray, as a group, every Thursday evening at 6 pm UK time. Please join us by setting aside the time and space in your own home

    Game on !!

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    Join us here online for ....Good Friday

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    Todays service can be linked from here and will also arrive on email. Come with us this afternoon on a journey of reflections as we follow Jesus from Gethsemane to Golgotha on

    The Way of the Cross 

    DOWNLOAD GOOD FRIDAY REFLECTION HERE


    To Stream or Not To Stream

    Even these chaps had to re-think the Day of Resurrection!


    imagePope Francis and Archbishop Justin were both consecrated to lead their respective christian communities in the same week, an extraordinary coincidence. Today, they both had to decide how to celebrate this special day, one in the vast emptiness of St Peter's basilica Rome, and one in his kitchen at Lambeth.imageThey both however reached out on Easter Sunday by streaming their services through the internet and it is amazing what God is doing through the web. The church of England recorded over 2,000,000 visits to virtual services in recent weeks, more than double the usual church attendance...........we are not alone.

    Forwarded from the Le Muy Whatsapp Bible Group

    NHS Surgeon asks for our Prayers. Link here or on photo

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    Pray for #NHS

    Fruit of the Spirit ???

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    Janie generously gave one of her jars of excellent marmalade to her sister who entered it into a competition.......congratulations Janie. . . . . ( ps,I've only 1 jar left! Vic )   


    It's Gonna be a New Sort of Community

    Archbishop designate of York Stephen Cottrell speaks on Songs of Praise about the impact of Covid 19 on church as we know it.


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    United in Prayer

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    Pope Francis wrote to Christian leaders asking that the wider church invoke "together the graces from Heaven" and ask "for the end of this pandemic". 

    He used his Angelus blessing on Sunday to invite all Christians together in praying the Lord's Prayer as a response to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

    The Pope asked that Christians, whatever their tradition, respond to the coronavirus pandemic "with the universality of prayer, of compassion, of tenderness".

    "Let us remain united. Let us make our closeness felt toward those persons who are the most lonely and tried," he said.   Read the full article from Christian Today here


    A.G.M's may need to be deferred

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