Pastoral Letter - 5th September 2020

Dear Friend from Bridport United, Uploders Methodist or Hope and Radipole United Reformed Churches.

 

I have returned from a lovely, if wet, week away.  As with so much of this year, a quite different holiday from that originally envisaged, since the week was supposed to have been spent with four generations of noisy Clarks under one roof.  Suffice it to say that just Sue and I on a Devon sheep farm in the middle of nowhere was considerably quieter! 

But once again I return to find the world is different again from the one I left. 

 

The school holidays have ended and many of our temporary holidaying residents have returned, like I have, to their homes.  I am particularly mindful of those many schoolchildren returning to classrooms for the first time since March, plus Teachers having to wrestle with new challenges and guidelines as they seek to keep themselves and their charges as safe as possible, and once again I am humbled by the flexibility and adaptability of we humans in the face of a new and ever-changing landscape, recognising that, imperfect as we are, we are indeed beautifully and wonderfully made by our even more beautiful and wonderful creator God !

On Tuesday evening I joined an evening Welcome service via Zoom where it was a delight to greet our new Ministers, Revs John Yarrien and Ruth Lownsbrough, and I felt very encouraged as we begin this new chapter in our church lives.

Thus, recharged and refreshed, I return to my desk delightfully full of hope in the face of what will undoubtedly be an Autumn and Winter of continuing battles to achieve some sort of normality.

And a part of that return will include the recommencement of 10:30am live services at the Bridport United Church, this week led by me and will include an act of sharing Communion - something that we have not been able to share together for so long it may almost feel like being for the first time?  To be honest, I have yet to work out the mechanics of doing that safely but I promise you I shall do my utmost to make it as special and as safe as possible!

Again I am aware that by no means all of us will feel able to join together on Sunday, which is why across the Circuit and Pastorate we will continue to offer alternative service options

Every blessing from your Minister,

Peter

 

So - your options this week, which like so much is having a bit of a change:

With live services on offer in some of our Circuit and Synod churches, we are going to mix things up a bit and offer a range of styles over time. 
 
1)  This week’s Video offering will be a recording of last Sunday’s Service at United Church Dorchester, led by the Rev'd John Walker.  Here’s the link:

 

2)  The Audio Service from the URC Daily Devotions Team explores the theme of Climate Sunday and is led by the Revs Mike Shrubsole and David Coleman.

   Hymns include

   George Condor’s All Things Praise Thee Lord Most High,

   F S Pierpoint’s For the Beauty of the Earth,

   Keith and Kirstyn Getty’s Creation Sings the Father’s Song, and finally

   Fr. Ernest Sand’s Sing of the Lord’s Goodness

The service will be sent out, as normal, at 9.45 on Sunday morning for a 10am start. To find this broadcast go to www.urc.org.uk then find the link to the Daily Devotions and click the Service option :
As always the service will be sent out in time for a 10am start but you can listen at any point after that.