• April News From The Clergy

    April News From The Clergy

    25 Mar 2019 • From the Clergy

    The Mince Pies and Christmas cakes were hardly off the supermarket shelves before their place was taken by Hot Cross Buns and chocolate eggs. Enter the word “Easter” into Google Images and you have to scroll through 39 pictures of eggs, rabbits and chicks before you reach the first one of a cross. One is all you get before a return to the other images and you have to scroll through another 15 before you find a picture of Christ and even then He shares the space with a rabbit!

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  • March News From The Clergy

    March News From The Clergy

    1 Mar 2019 • From the Clergy

    At the 1993 Conservative Party Conference in Blackpool, John Major launched what became one of the most widely-derided and satirised campaigns of modern times: ‘Back to Basics’. To be fair, the Prime Minister’s words were wilfully misinterpreted by the media; as he himself would observe years later, it was an example of how soundbites taken out of context can be misleading.

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  • February News From the Clergy

    February News From the Clergy

    1 Feb 2019 • From the Clergy

    Mental health issues have, over recent months, become a hot topic. There is a new openness and a reduction in the perceived stigma attached to acknowledging mental health problems.
    February 4th – 10th 2019 has been designated children’s mental health week and so this is a good time for us to consider this matter and to ask, in particular: What is the Christian response to mental health issues? The immediate and short answer is of course, exactly the same as the Christian response to any form of human suffering: To meet it with compassion, with prayer and, where possible, with the appropriate practical action.

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  • January News From The Clergy

    January News From The Clergy

    31 Dec 2018 • From the Clergy

    From Robert Jones, Archdeacon of Worcester

    We live in tumultuous political times, so much so that many people are literally switching off from TV and radio news. It does indeed seem that megaphone diplomacy, which, of course, is no diplomacy at all, is playing a bigger part in our public discourse. We must not have a false sense that history automatically gets better as we learn to live better, when it is clear that human sinfulness can mess things up just as effectively today as it ever did.

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  • December News From The Clergy

    December News From The Clergy

    28 Nov 2018 • From the Clergy

    “Luise has already bagged Good King Wenceslas” was the message I received from Graham when he told me that St Stephen is the theme for this month’s magazine. Out of the window, then, went my first idea!
    So what does that leave me? St Stephen: the first Christian martyr, whose story is told in chapters six and seven of Acts, where he is described as “A man full of faith and the Holy Spirit.”

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  • November News From The Clergy

    November News From The Clergy

    26 Oct 2018 • From the Clergy

    “When you go home, tell them of us, and say
    For your tomorrow, we gave our today!”

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  • October News From the Clergy

    October News From the Clergy

    1 Oct 2018 • From the Clergy

    In the age of the tablet and the e-book, my uncompromising adherence to bound paper is something of an oddity. On the London Underground, as I turn the pages of my book, I am normally surrounded by people reading on Kindles or doing something on their phones, occasionally sneaking confused glances at this interloper with a suspicious, non-technological object. At Amsterdam Airport recently, another man of about my age and I were the only two people waiting for our flight reading books; everyone else - from small children to an elderly man in a wheelchair - was absorbed in something electronic......

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  • September News From the Clergy

    September News From the Clergy

    29 Aug 2018 • From the Clergy

    ‘I believe in angels/ Something good in everything I see.’
    ‘I sit and wait/ Does an angel contemplate my fate?’
    ‘I’m no angel, but please don’t think that I won’t try and try.’
    ‘Heaven must be missin’ an angel/ Missin’ one angel, child/ ‘Cause you’re here with me right now.’
    ‘Baby, you’re my angel/ Come and save me tonight.’....................

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  • July and August News from the Clergy

    25 Jun 2018 • From the Clergy

    On July 22nd the Church celebrates the Feast of Mary Magdalene, possibly one of the best-known figures of the New Testament; but what, in fact, do we really know about her? Also known as Mary of Magdala, and probably from the town of that name, by the Sea of Galilee, Mary Magdalene has become famous as the prototype of the reformed prostitute and a principal witness of the resurrection. Portrayed by several classical artists in various stages of undress, she has become a somewhat notorious figure, presented by some as the lover of Christ and even as the wife he married after “coming to” in the tomb and escaping to lead a full and natural life. Leaving aside these later myths, the first part of this claim to fame is also very insecure......

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  • June News from the Clergy

    29 May 2018 • From the Clergy

    As a curate, I was on the governing body of one of the local primary schools and chaired the teaching and learning committee. We were reviewing the Year 6 SATs papers, which newly included a test on Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPAG). It was the only time the deputy head ever let me near that particular paper, following my detailed rant against it, but he failed to regain control of it before I came across a question on fronted adverbials. I realised that I had no idea what a fronted adverbial was. Surely, I reasoned, if I had worked through various degrees and learned (to some extent) several foreign languages, never needing to know about fronted adverbials, this fell into the category of advanced linguistics rather than essential grammar?.....

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