Pastoral Letter 1

Now on YouTube: Palm Sunday Service

From our Minister: Rev Peter Clarke:

Dear Bridport United Church or Uploders Chapel Friend,
 

Week two of significant restrictions to our movements and, from the feedback I have received so far, most folks seem to be managing OK.  It is frustrating and very different from normality but, somehow we seem to be getting through?

Services - Attached to this email, as promised is both this weeks service from the United Reformed Church Daily Devotions Team, this week led by the Rev'd Andy Braunston, whose brain child Daily Devotions is.  Also attached is the service offered by our own Dorset South and West Circuit Team, with this week’s service led by Rev'd Brenda Stephenson.  

If you are on the electronic distribution system, as last week, you have a range of addition options:  

  1. As last week, if you visit the URC website, https://urc.org.uk and click the Daily Devotions link, from 10am onwards at the latest on Sunday there will be a link to an audio version of the same service so you can hear Andy’s prayers and sermon and sing along with the hymns.
  2. Again, as last week, is via the Dorset South and West Circuit website - https://www.dsw.church  Look for the link that will appear for a service tomorrow put together by Peter and Debs Brazier, which will display on YouTube - so you get visuals too!  The sermon this week will be by me.  This is a first for me as I have never video-recorded an address.  I just hope you will not be put off by the messy bookcases behind me!
  3. I will aim to send some additional Holy Week resources in due course.

There are of course other online options you may find - and maybe let me know so I can share with others?  Also let’s use email to keep in touch, to let me know how you are and if you need anything?  If you have anything you would like to share with the church folk, let me know and I’ll post it next time?

Originality Corner - Normally we distribute Palm Crosses this week, which for those receiving a hard copy service we have included.  We can’t do that electronically so how about you seeing if you can produce a cross that will be your Palm Cross? 

Soul Space - You may remember that we have been approached to initiate a rather exciting development in the life of the United Church, flowing from the fact that the review by our friends in the Bridport Anglican Team had suggested a reduction in the number of Xalt services to one a month.  The Xalt Team approached us and, with the blessing of St. Mary’s, we have agreed to seek to continue a twice-monthly offering of more contemporary worship, which we’re thinking of calling ‘Soul Space.’  In some ways the outbreak of Covid-19 has somewhat complicated this development but it has also given us time to think and plan what we can offer and how we can do this?

A small planning group has already met (once face to face and once this week via the conferencing software Zoom - how 21st Century are we now?) and are planning to offer additional online offerings.  Hopefully a Holy Week service and also an Easter Sunday one, to add to the other options outlined above.  Watch this space, friends, these are interesting and exciting times it seems!

This might be the strangest Holy Week of our lives but it will not go unmarked and we shall share and worship together … even though apart?

Blessings and prayers 

Peter