Author Archives: Claire

Benefice Newsletter for Sunday 27th March – Fourth Sunday of Lent/Mothering Sunday


A Prayer for Ukraine
God of peace and justice,
We pray for the people of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for those who fear for tomorrow,
that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment, and compassion to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear,
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Amen.
Archbishop Justin Welby, Archbishop Stephen Cottrell

DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal – World Vision UK

A message from Bishop Martin
“The crisis in Ukraine is creating a humanitarian catastrophe, as all of us can see from the daily news reports.  Bishop Mike and I are calling on all the parishes and congregations of the Diocese this Lent to raise funds through collections, individual gifts, events, and activities, to respond to the terrible situation the people of Ukraine are facing – both in the country and as refugees.

We are very grateful to be in partnership with World Vision who will receive our donations and handle the gift aid.

Be assured that every pound goes directly to those in need. World Vision is also part of the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), whose appeal is supported by the UK Government.

We ask you to be as generous as possible, and to continue to pray fervently for the end of the military operation and for peace.

With prayers for you, and for the children and families affected by the conflict in Ukraine.”

Bishop Martin

How your donation helps

The funds you donate to this emergency appeal will support emergency response for displaced children and families in Ukraine and neighbouring countries. We will use donations in Ukraine through partners when it is possible. If this is not possible or in the unlikely event we receive more donations than we need for this emergency, the donations will be used to help displaced and refugee populations elsewhere around the world.

content.wvunited.org

You can donate by visiting the World Vision UK website here:

https://content.wvunited.org/en-gb/emergencies/ukraine-crisis-eds-ips-appeal/#donate

Aldeburgh Parish Church has pre-labelled
Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal gift envelopes into which you can put your donation, and then place into one of the donation boxes, or hand to the churchwarden,
or the treasurer

Services this Sunday for The Alde Sandlings Benefice

Aldeburgh

10.30am

6.00pm

Service of the Word

Evening Prayer

Aldringham

11.00am

Service of the Word

Friston

9.00am

Morning Prayer

Knodishall

9.00am

Morning Prayer

Next Week
Sunday 3rd April
Fifth Sunday of Lent

Collect
God of compassion, whose Son Jesus Christ, the child of Mary,
shared the life of a home in Nazareth, and on the cross drew the whole human family to himself: strengthen us in our daily living that in joy and in sorrow we may know the power of your presence to bind together and to heal; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.


First Reading
Exodus 2.1-10
Now a man from the house of Levi went and married a Levite woman. The woman conceived and bore a son; and when she saw that he was a fine baby, she hid him for three months. When she could hide him no longer she got a papyrus basket for him, and plastered it with bitumen and pitch; she put the child in it and placed it among the reeds on the bank of the river. His sister stood at a distance, to see what would happen to him. The daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the river, while her attendants walked beside the river. She saw the basket among the reeds and sent her maid to bring it. When she opened it, she saw the child. He was crying, and she took pity on him. ‘This must be one of the Hebrews’ children,’ she said. Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, ‘Shall I go and get you a nurse from the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?’ Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, ‘Yes.’ So the girl went and called the child’s mother. Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, ‘Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will give you your wages.’ So the woman took the child and nursed it. When the child grew up, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, and she took him as her son. She named him Moses, ‘because’, she said, ‘I drew him out of the water.’

Second Reading
2 Corinthians 1.3-7
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all consolation, who consoles us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to console those who are in any affliction with the consolation with which we ourselves are consoled by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are abundant for us, so also our consolation is abundant through Christ. If we are being afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation; if we are being consoled, it is for your consolation, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we are also suffering. Our hope for you is unshaken; for we know that as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our consolation.

Gospel Reading
Luke 2.33-35
And the child’s father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, ‘This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be opposed so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed—and a sword will pierce your own soul too.’

Post Communion
Loving God, as a mother feeds her children at the breast
you feed us in this sacrament with the food and drink of eternal life:
help us who have tasted your goodness
to grow in grace within the household of faith;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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Sermon preached by The Very Revd Christopher Lewis at
Aldringham 20th March 2022

Isaiah 55.1-9

The first reading has some of the most beautiful and moving passages in the Bible. It speaks of the free gift of God’s grace: ‘Come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.’ And then later in the passage, there is reference to the everlasting covenant which God offers to his people, so they should ‘Seek the Lord while he may be found’ and ‘call upon him while he is near’. There is the promise that God will pardon the wicked when they return to Him, with God explaining that He acts differently from us: ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord’.

There is, however, a test and a challenge here. Are we able to receive a free gift? It is a Lent test and requires a very great degree of clearing of the mind: not mine clearance as in land-mines, but mind clearance, which may be just about as difficult.

We have to re-educate ourselves. You know all that stuff about there being ‘no free lunches’ which we learned on our mother’s (probably actually our father’s) knee. And you know all that saying about people only appreciating what they pay for. Someone said to me the other day that we really ought to charge people to come to church….then they’d appreciate it.

You know those letters you throw away: Dear Rev Lewis, congratulations on having got to the last stage in the competition to win a ….Ford Tantrum….imagine yourself, with your partner beside you, purring along. Or that commercial operation, the ‘postcode lottery’ with its £10 per month subscription, although it is at least true that a third of that goes to charities.

Then there are the presents or the good turns that you receive, and which send you into a terrible anxiety about how on earth you will repay them, for repay them you feel you must. Otherwise, you will feel patronised or indebted and that would be terrible.

No, for this is the test. Unlike the lunches and the offers and the presents, this gift is free. And so: are you able to believe the older saying which came long before all the ‘free lunch’ business, that ‘the best things in life are free’. So, to the Lent test – not a test in the sense of an exam, but rather in the sense of a struggle: is it possible to think in God’s way and for us to receive free gifts without embarrassment, without hurt pride. ‘Come buy wine and milk without money’.

That, I think, is why Jesus uses children as examples to us all….and one reason why he commends the people whom society rejects. Why? Because they are not fussed about receiving free gifts. When I was a Vicar in a parish in Lincolnshire, homeless men used to come to our door asking for sandwiches and more: marmite sandwiches, jam – anything would do, and our children looked on with fascination and chatted.

On the subject of Vicars, there was a once a Vicar who was in the middle of the eucharist service in his church and he got up to read the Gospel. It was to have been from St Luke’s Gospel where Jesus says (Lk 6;27): ‘Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you…’ But he could not say it; he stopped in the middle: ‘bless those who….’ He had to sit down. Then a voice came from the back which said ‘Don’t worry Vicar; I find it impossible to live by it too’. And instead of the Gospel reading and the

sermon, they had a spontaneous discussion about the wonder of the Christian faith: bless those who curse you. So, once they had lost their pride, they could discuss God’s help, usually called his grace.

It is a Lent test to realise that God is not just another person only kind-of infinite. When Jesus told the parable of the workers in the vineyard – the one where the people all got the same wage, even when they started working just before the end of the day – he realised that it would be hard for people to get the point. God’s ways are different. He is not fair at all. For his love goes out to people whoever they are and it is free. It is ‘amazing grace’. And, in a sense, we are not required to pay him back. Except that he longs for us to show the same kind of unreasonable love to him and to others.

We are in the middle of an international crisis during which it is right to reach out to God and pray for the Ukrainians and indeed for the Russians. We have to recognize that many very brave Russians demonstrate against the war, interrupt a news bulletin, or are just horrified and leave their country. But we also realize that the Russian Orthodox Church (again with some exceptions) is backing the war in the form of its Patriarch Kirill – no doubt in part because the Ukraine has formed its own breakaway Orthodox Church, but also because he backs Putin, in Putin’s demands for Ukrainian surrender. Put differently, Patriarch Kirill could be labelled very clearly as among the enemy.

How then do we, as it were, forward God’s free gift of love? Remember Jesus’ saying ‘Love your enemies’ and the voice from the back of the church which said ‘Don’t worry Vicar; I find it impossible to live by too’. What God in Jesus brought was a whole new way of living: a free gift which is also a challenge. Force has to be used in some circumstances as it had to be used against Hitler. The message, however, must mean that we treat others with understanding and do not bear grudges. It did real harm to hate Germans in the 1920’s and it did no good to hate them in the 1950’s.

Jesus words were part of his bringing in a whole new kind of world: the kingdom of God on its way to being realized on earth. That led to his life-giving healing to those who were suffering and outcast, and then his death at the hands of the enemy namely the religious and political elite of his day. Lent is an appropriate time during which to reflect on that life and to pray that we may follow it as best we can. We do not look ahead too quickly to Easter as if it solves all problems. We concentrate on God’s free gift of love and grace now.
Amen

NOTICES

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Church of England Lent Reflections and
Diocese Weekly Newsletters

You might be interested to receive the daily Lent reflections from the Church of England. Here is the link to sign up to their email reflections

https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/what-we-believe
/lent-holy-week-and-easter/livelent-embracing-justice-our-lent-reflections

To keep up with weekly news from our Diocese you can sign up to receive the weekly newsletters here:
https://cofesuffolk.org/
subscribe-to-our-newsletters

Church of England and Diocese Online Worship

There are many online services you can view from the Church of England and our cathedral. Here are some links below.

Church of England website

https://www.churchofengland.org/prayer-and-worship/
church-online/weekly-online-services

Church of England Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/
thechurchofengland/

Church of England YouTube channel

https://www.youtube.com/channel/
UCLecK8GovYoaYzIgyOElKZg

St Edmundsbury Cathedral Facebook Page
https://www.facebook.com/stedscathedral

 

Lent Sessions
Will take place in the vestry of Aldeburgh church and in the home of Jill Brown, who has kindly offered to host an evening session through the Lenten period.
The dates and times are as follows:
Wednesday’s 11am, Aldeburgh church Vestry –
hosted by Rev’d James – beginning on March 2
Thursdays 7pm, Onemana, Alde House Drive, Aldeburgh, IP15 5EE hosted by Jill Brown – beginning on March 3

 

Weekly Benefice Newsletter

If you would like something added to the weekly newsletter that is relevant to the Benefice, please do let Claire know and we will do our best to include it the following week.

All requests by 4pm on Thursday please

Food Banks at the East of England Co-op

Foodbanks provide a valuable service to those in need in our communities. The Aldeburgh Co-op and Solar in Leiston are doing a grand job in collecting food donations, which are collected regularly and distributed. So please look out for the various collection baskets.

The Trussel Trust Organisation

Food banks in our network have seen an increase in the number of food parcels given out over the last year due to Coronavirus, so any donations are much appreciated. You can find out which items your local food bank is most in need of by entering your postcode here – https://www.trusselltrust.org/give-food/

Pilgrims Together on Wednesdays

The Pilgrims worship together every Wednesday.
You are all more than welcome to join them via Zoom.  
The worship starts at 6.30pm (Zoom call opens from 6.10pm) and the call is then left open after the worship time for people to catch up.   People are welcome to email pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
to receive a copy, added to our mailing list or for the Zoom links .

Saturday 2nd April Pilgrim Community Breakfast and Ramble starting at the Parrot Pub at 9.30am for Breakfast.

As before, a delicious breakfast bap and coffee / tea combo for £5 is on offer at the Parrot…definitely not to be missed, before we head out to explore local paths. Come just for breakfast and a catch-up with folk, come for just the ramble or come and enjoy both. (You don’t need to book in advance, you can decide on the morning.) To help with timing, if coming only to ramble then we generally head from The Parrot around 10.30am. Please do invite friends along.

Lunchtime Concert at Aldeburgh Parish Church

Monday 4th April at 12 noon

Following the huge success of Nadia’s concert with us in October, we welcome Nadia’s and friends, to raise more money for Save the Children.

ROBIN SOLDAN – FLUTE

NATHANIEL HARRISON – BASSOON

NADIA LASSERSON – PIANO

Trios by Bach, Beethoven & Donizetti

Admission free- a retiring collection for Save the Children

Save the Children - Community Information Centre

All welcome

Benefice Newsletter for Sunday 20th March – Third Sunday of Lent


A Prayer for Ukraine

God of peace and justice,
We pray for the people of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for those who fear for tomorrow,
that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment, and compassion to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear,
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Amen.


Archbishop Justin Welby, Archbishop Stephen Cottrell

DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal – World Vision UK

A message from Bishop Martin
“The crisis in Ukraine is creating a humanitarian catastrophe, as all of us can see from the daily news reports.  Bishop Mike and I are calling on all the parishes and congregations of the Diocese this Lent to raise funds through collections, individual gifts, events, and activities, to respond to the terrible situation the people of Ukraine are facing – both in the country and as refugees.

We are very grateful to be in partnership with World Vision who will receive our donations and handle the gift aid.

Be assured that every pound goes directly to those in need. World Vision is also part of the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), whose appeal is supported by the UK Government.

We ask you to be as generous as possible, and to continue to pray fervently for the end of the military operation and for peace.

With prayers for you, and for the children and families affected by the conflict in Ukraine.”

Bishop Martin

How your donation helps

The funds you donate to this emergency appeal will support emergency response for displaced children and families in Ukraine and neighbouring countries. We will use donations in Ukraine through partners when it is possible. If this is not possible or in the unlikely event we receive more donations than we need for this emergency, the donations will be used to help displaced and refugee populations elsewhere around the world.

content.wvunited.org

You can donate by visiting the World Vision UK website here:

https://content.wvunited.org/en-gb/emergencies/ukraine-crisis-eds-ips-appeal/#donate

Aldeburgh Parish Church has pre-labelled
Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal gift envelopes into which you can put your donation, and then place into one of the donation boxes, or hand to the churchwarden,
or the treasurer

SUPPLIES TO UKRAINE

David Jenkins of Thorpeness has been volunteering his time at
Anchor Freights warehouse in Ipswich, where they are sorting and distributing supplies to Ukraine.

At this time due to Customs restrictions food cannot be accepted but items that would be welcomed are: –

Toiletries

Nappies

Woman’s sanitary items

Warm clothing

Power Banks

Bedding

Sleeping bags

First Aid items

Wipes

Torches

David has very kindly said that he is more than happy for donations to be delivered to his home address for onward transmission. 
Please contact admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk if you would like to donate any items.

 

Services this Sunday for The Alde Sandlings Benefice

Aldeburgh

8.00am

10.30am

Holy Communion

Morning Prayer

Aldringham

11.00am

Holy Communion

Knodishall

9.00am

Holy Communion

Next Week 
Sunday 27th March
Fourth Sunday of Lent/Mothering Sunday

 

Collect
Almighty God,
whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain,
and entered not into glory before he was crucified:
mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross,
may find it none other than the way of life and peace;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

 

First Reading
Isaiah 55.1-9
Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters;
and you that have no money, come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. 
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,
and your labour for that which does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves
in rich food. Incline your ear, and come to me; listen, so that you
may live. I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David.  See, I made him a witness to the peoples, a leader and commander for the peoples. See, you shall call nations that you do not know, and nations that do not know you shall run to you, because of the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has glorified you.  Seek the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake their way, and the unrighteous their thoughts; let them return to the Lord, that he may have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. 

Second Reading
1 Corinthians 10.1-13
I do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them, and they were struck down in the wilderness. Now these things occurred as examples for us, so that we might not desire evil as they did. Do not become idolaters as some of them did; as it is written, ‘The people sat down to eat and drink, and they rose up to play.’ We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day. We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did, and were destroyed by serpents. And do not complain as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer. These things happened to them to serve as an example, and they were written down to instruct us, on whom the ends of the ages have come. So if you think you are standing, watch out that you do not fall. No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.

Gospel Reading
Luke 13.1-9
At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, ‘Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them—do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.’ Then he told this parable: ‘A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, “See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?” He replied, “Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig round it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.” ’

Post Communion
Merciful Lord, grant your people grace to withstand
the temptations of the world, the flesh and the devil,
and with pure hearts and minds to follow you, the only God;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Sermon preached by The Very Revd Christopher Lewis at
Aldeburgh 13th March 2022

Luke 13: 31-end

These are hard times, made more challenging, in a way, by the many types of media. We rightly feel strongly for the Ukrainians in their plight. And we are critical of the Russians, although one cannot help noticing that many Russians are being arrested every day for demonstrating against the attacks and some are leaving their country.

It was in Peterborough cathedral many years ago that an arsonist stacked plastic chairs and set light to them, leading to a toxic fire, the smoke from which did vast damage to the contents of that beautiful building. Next day, there was a deputation with a cheque towards the restoration. It was from the local mosque which had taken up a large collection.

My text is just a few words from the second reading today: ‘Some Pharisees came and said to Jesus…’ In spite of everything said about Pharisees, these were friendly ones, and they gave a warning about Herod’s intention to kill Jesus. Today’s Gospel from St Luke continues with Jesus’ lament over Jerusalem, the city which kills its prophets and stones those sent to it. It is the city which Jesus loves… poetically: ‘How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings’. Jesus knows that he will set his face to Jerusalem and die there.

What were the Pharisees up to? Predictably, commentators (you know what experts are like) vary in their interpretation. Some reckon that the Pharisees were indeed plain friendly and giving a warning. After all, when Jesus was young, his teachers would have been Pharisees. Then different experts say that the Pharisees were not what they seemed to be; maybe they were in league with Herod, bent on the sinister purpose of diverting Jesus from his course.

Back to the Peterborough Muslims. Were they giving a donation because they felt affection for the cathedral and the people who worshipped there – showing sorrow for the sacrilege which had happened to a holy place? Or did they have some devious purpose, deceiving the enemy into thinking they were on his side, in order to subvert the Christian faith?

Back to the Pharisees. It appears that they were a mixed bunch. They certainly tended to be legalistic, hence the use of the term ‘pharisee’ today to describe people who are self-righteous and over-formal. They had their traditions, but were much more flexible than some of the other groups at the time, Sadducees to name but one. Pharisees were more popular, more democratic, in a sense more liberal. Jesus at times pointed to their hypocrisy and legalism (along with the scribes) but then on the other hand, the Pharisees in a sense produced St Paul and Paul used his Pharisee origins to strengthen his credentials with the Jews. Paul does not seem to have thought that at all odd when he was preaching a Gospel of resurrection. After all, Pharisees believed in resurrection from the dead.

The social psychologists have a word for how we choose and treat particular groups of people; they call it reification. We generalise and reify, especially with collections of people we don’t like. Newspapers do it every day, in fact you could almost say that reification is their stock- in-trade. A more serious example is the crazy conspiracy theorists which have particular enemies. I don’t seem able to avoid a fascination for the American conspiracy movement QAnon, for they find original ways to believe the unbelievable. They reckon that their government, their media, and their financial world are all controlled by Satan-worshipping paedophiles. QAnon is an anti-semitic internet-supported phenomenon and, what is more, apparently it is growing. I find it hard to believe that 17% of Americans are QAnon believers, some of them right-wing Christians and Trump supporters.

People like Joseph McCarthy used to think that there were Communists out there somewhere, a great block of people who were the enemy. They went away or somehow disintegrated, but we quickly replaced them with terrorists and Islamists. Of course, people who bomb and destroy do exist; there are people out there who are bent on harm, and we must oppose them, much as we do Putin. But the reification happens when they are treated as a great block of people, part perhaps of an axis of evil, and the reification continues with the belief that once they are somehow eliminated, all will be well. Actually they are probably human beings who have got themselves into (or found themselves in) a particular context and then do evil things, like the gangs in West Side Story. Maybe we are creating them by the policies we pursue…and then fighting them by means of more of the same policies.

The Christian asks the question: How did Jesus behave? How, for example, did he behave towards the Pharisees? He certainly called them some rude things: whitewashed tombs and broods of vipers; blind guides. But in the Gospels the things he said were hardly the main part, for the thrust of the Gospel was action, opposing suffering and preaching love for all. Jesus turned his face to Jerusalem and faced the consequences of doing that, rather than having a quiet life in Galilee railing at his enemies.

So Jesus’ method, if one may call it that, was an active kind of love: one which stayed with the enemy, rather than distancing itself from the opposition or going separate ways. Indeed, Jesus’ way meant entering enemy-occupied territory and drawing the sting of aggression by loving behaviour. His life is not only a matter of argument and counter argument, but more a matter of being alongside friend and foe, knowing that such a move will lead to suffering……. and thereby providing a wholly new context in which life can take place: ‘Love your enemies’ (Luke 6;27). For Jesus, it led to suffering and death…..and the victory which followed was not at all of the expected kind.

Significantly, the victory did not exactly lead to the defeat of the enemy, at least in the obvious sense. Pharisees and many others no doubt went on in their normal way, until they were killed by the occupying power or died in their beds. The resurrection was theologically a defeat for the devil and all his works, but in the more humdrum world of everyday life in Jerusalem, life

went on. What changed was that Jesus had provided a whole new world, a new kind of life which was of a different order to the old life. So the boring old battle lines of reification, drawn up over this issue or that – Pharisees or Sadducees – did not really lead to victory or to defeat. They were largely irrelevant. New ground was found. The action moved elsewhere and the issues, or whatever you wish to call them, were to be seen in the light of the teaching and practice of the crucified and risen Lord. Love was to be active in a new way. The kingdom had come and was also yet to come.

The reifications which we latch onto are often deeply misleading. Of course, that does not mean that we do not work against suffering and evil, as Jesus did throughout his time on earth. There is a justification for supporting the use of force in ‘just policies’ to protect people or nations, or in a ‘just war’ like one which had to be fought against Hitler. Yet ‘love your enemies’ is an overriding principle which in part means: only do hard things to a minimum and never bear grudges. It did no good to hate Germans in the 1950’s. The world is full of human beings and their activities – to be understood and loved. Even the Pharisees were not all that they seemed to be.

Amen

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Church of England Lent Reflections and
Diocese Weekly Newsletters

You might be interested to receive the daily Lent reflections from the Church of England. Here is the link to sign up to their email reflections

https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/what-we-believe/lent-holy-week-and-easter/livelent-embracing-justice-our-lent-reflections

To keep up with weekly news from our Diocese you can sign up to receive the weekly newsletters here:
https://cofesuffolk.org/subscribe-to-our-newsletters

Church of England and Diocese Online Worship

There are many online services you can view from the Church of England and our cathedral. Here are some links below.

Church of England website

https://www.churchofengland.org/
prayer-and-worship/church-online/weekly-online-services

Church of England Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/
thechurchofengland/

Church of England YouTube channel

https://www.youtube.com/
channel/UCLecK8GovYoaYzIgyOElKZg

St Edmundsbury Cathedral Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/
stedscathedral

 

Lent Sessions
Will take place in the vestry of Aldeburgh church and in the home of Jill Brown, who has kindly offered to host an evening session through the Lenten period.
The dates and times are as follows:
Wednesday’s 11am, Aldeburgh church Vestry –
hosted by Rev’d James – beginning on March 2
Thursdays 7pm, Onemana, Alde House Drive, Aldeburgh, IP15 5EE hosted by Jill Brown – beginning on March 3

Food Banks at the East of England Co-op

Foodbanks provide a valuable service to those in need in our communities. The Aldeburgh Co-op and Solar in Leiston are doing a grand job in collecting food donations, which are collected regularly and distributed. So please look out for the various collection baskets.

The Trussel Trust Organisation

Food banks in our network have seen an increase in the number of food parcels given out over the last year due to Coronavirus, so any donations are much appreciated. You can find out which items your local food bank is most in need of by entering your postcode here – https://www.trusselltrust.org/give-food/

 

Weekly Benefice Newsletter

If you would like something added to the weekly newsletter that is relevant to the Benefice, please do let Claire know and we will do our best to include it the following week.

All requests by 4pm on Thursday please

Pilgrims Together on Wednesdays

The Pilgrims worship together every Wednesday.
You are all more than welcome to join them via Zoom.  
The worship starts at 6.30pm (Zoom call opens from 6.10pm) and the call is then left open after the worship time for people to catch up.   People are welcome to email pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
to receive a copy or be added to our mailing list, and for Zoom links.

Saturday 2nd April Pilgrim Community Breakfast and Ramble starting at the Parrot Pub at 9.30am for Breakfast.

As before, a delicious breakfast bap and coffee / tea combo for £5 is on offer at the Parrot…definitely not to be missed, before we head out to explore local paths. Come just for breakfast and a catch-up with folk, come for just the ramble or come and enjoy both. (You don’t need to book in advance, you can decide on the morning.) To help with timing, if coming only to ramble then we generally head from The Parrot around 10.30am. Please do invite friends along.

A message from Adrian Brown –
Aldeburgh Church Treasurer

Would you like to donate to our Church?

We hugely rely on regular donations to enable us to open our doors daily for people to visit and worship in our beautiful church.  Can you help, but haven’t got the cash on you?  We now have a contactless

terminal next to the sidespeople handing out service booklets so donations may be made before or after a service, or why not sign up to the Parish Giving Scheme and donate as often as you want.  

Ask a Church warden or sidesperson for more information.  
We cannot thank you enough for your donations.

 

MOTHERING SUNDAY POSIES

We will be making posies on the 26th March from 10am in the vestry, for our Mothering Sunday Service at Aldeburgh. Do come along and help if you can spare the time.

If you can spare any greenery, please do leave it in the west porch before the 26th. Thank you

Lunchtime Concert at Aldeburgh Parish Church

Monday 4th April at 12 noon

Following the huge success of Nadia’s concert with us in October, we welcome Nadia’s and friends, to raise more money for Save the Children.

ROBIN SOLDAN – FLUTE

NATHANIEL HARRISON – BASSOON

NADIA LASSERSON – PIANO

Trios by Bach, Beethoven & Donizetti

Admission free- a retiring collection for Save the Children

Save the Children - Community Information Centre

All welcome

Benefice Newsletter for Sunday 13th March – Second Sunday of Lent


A Prayer for Ukraine
God of peace and justice,
We pray for the people of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for those who fear for tomorrow,
that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment, and compassion to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear,
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Amen.

Archbishop Justin Welby, Archbishop Stephen Cottrell

 

DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal – World Vision UK


A message from Bishop Martin
“The crisis in Ukraine is creating a humanitarian catastrophe, as all of us can see from the daily news reports.  Bishop Mike and I are calling on all the parishes and congregations of the Diocese this Lent to raise funds through collections, individual gifts, events, and activities, to respond to the terrible situation the people of Ukraine are facing – both in the country and as refugees.

We are very grateful to be in partnership with World Vision who will receive our donations and handle the gift aid.

Be assured that every pound goes directly to those in need. World Vision is also part of the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), whose appeal is supported by the UK Government.

We ask you to be as generous as possible, and to continue to pray fervently for the end of the military operation and for peace.

With prayers for you, and for the children and families affected by the conflict in Ukraine.”

Bishop Martin

How your donation helps

The funds you donate to this emergency appeal will support emergency response for displaced children and families in Ukraine and neighbouring countries. We will use donations in Ukraine through partners when it is possible. If this is not possible or in the unlikely event we receive more donations than we need for this emergency, the donations will be used to help displaced and refugee populations elsewhere around the world.

content.wvunited.org

You can donate by visiting the World Vision UK website here:

https://content.wvunited.org/en-gb/emergencies/ukraine-crisis-eds-ips-appeal/#donate

Aldeburgh Parish Church has pre-labelled
Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal gift envelopes into which you can put your donation, and then place into one of the donation boxes, or hand to the churchwarden,
or the treasurer

SUPPLIES TO UKRAINE
David Jenkins of Thorpeness has been volunteering his time at
Anchor Freights warehouse in Ipswich, where they are sorting and distributing supplies to Ukraine.

At this time due to Customs restrictions food cannot be accepted but items that would be welcomed are: –

Toiletries

Nappies

Woman’s sanitary items

Warm clothing

Power Banks

Bedding

Sleeping bags

First Aid items

Wipes

Torches

David has very kindly said that he is more than happy for donations to be delivered to his home address for onward transmission. 
Please contact admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk if you would like to donate items.

 

Services this Sunday for The Alde Sandlings Benefice

Aldeburgh

10.30am

Holy Communion

Aldringham

11.00am

Service of the Word

Friston

9.00am

CANCELLED

Knodishall

9.00am

Morning Prayer

 

Collect
Almighty God, you show to those who are in error the light of your truth,
that they may return to the way of righteousness:
grant to all those who are admitted into the fellowship of Christ’s religion,
that they may reject those things that are contrary to their profession,
and follow all such things as are agreeable to the same;
through our Lord Jesus Christ, who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
Genesis 15.1-12, 17-18
After these things the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, ‘Do not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.’ But Abram said, ‘O Lord God, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?’ And Abram said, ‘You have given me no offspring, and so a slave born in my house is to be my heir.’ But the word of the Lord came to him, ‘This man shall not be your heir; no one but your very own issue shall be your heir.’ He brought him outside and said, ‘Look towards heaven and count the stars, if you are able to count them.’ Then he said to him, ‘So shall your descendants be.’  And he believed the Lord; and the Lord reckoned it to him as righteousness. Then he said to him, ‘I am the Lord who brought you from Ur of the Chaldeans, to give you this land to possess.’ But he said, ‘O Lord God, how am I to know that I shall possess it?’ He said to him, ‘Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtle-dove, and a young pigeon.’ He brought him all these and cut them in two, laying each half over against the other; but he did not cut the birds in two. And when birds of prey came down on the carcasses, Abram drove them away. As the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram, and a deep and terrifying darkness descended upon him. When the sun had gone down and it was dark, a smoking fire-pot and a flaming torch passed between these pieces. On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, ‘To your descendants I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates’.

Second Reading
Philippians 3.17-4.1
Brothers and sisters, join in imitating me, and observe those who live according to the example you have in us.  For many live as enemies of the cross of Christ; I have often told you of them, and now I tell you even with tears. Their end is destruction; their god is the belly; and their glory is in their shame; their minds are set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven, and it is from there that we are expecting a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. He will transform the body of our humiliation so that it may be conformed to the body of his glory, by the power that also enables him to make all things subject to himself. Therefore, my brothers and sisters, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, my beloved.

Gospel Reading
Luke 13.31-end
At that very hour some Pharisees came and said to him, ‘Get away from here, for Herod wants to kill you.’ He said to them, ‘Go and tell that fox for me, “Listen, I am casting out demons and performing cures today and tomorrow, and on the third day I finish my work. Yet today, tomorrow, and the next day I must be on my way, because it is impossible for a prophet to be killed away from Jerusalem.” Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing! See, your house is left to you. And I tell you, you will not see me until the time comes when you say, “Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord.”

Post Communion
Almighty God, you see that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves: keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Sermon preached by The Revd James Marston at
Knodishall 6th March 2022

Luke 4.1-13

May I speak in the name of the living God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

According to the website wiki.how to do anything, under coping with temptation it has the following recommendations.

Distract yourself with a healthier activity.

Tell yourself you’ll indulge your craving in 15 mins, then delay it longer.
Visualize yourself resisting the temptation to increase your resolve

All of these are, of course, and I speak as one who loves temptation, boring, dull and not much fun.

We all love to indulge ourselves, don’t we? Not only am I in an Odyssean battle with my attempts to stop smoking, I have a little blue sports car which I certainly don’t need but rather like the attention it draws.

Even our 18th century friend Canon Woodforde enjoyed the temptations of a fine table. On a day in Lent 1778 Woodforde spent the day fishing with friends before dining on stewed carp, a filet of veal and roasted ham followed by some mince pies and tarts, before spending the rest of the evening gambling and losing four schillings and six pence and not getting home until half past nine o’clock.

The next day, according to his diary, he brewed some strong beer and got his two large pigs “amazingly drunk” so much, so they were unable to walk for two days, and he was able to slit their ears without noticing.

An observation that made me wonder if Canon Woodforde ever had time to fit in doing the benefice rota let alone a PCC meeting.

Resisting the things, we like but aren’t always good for us; resisting temptation is, for all of us, something of a Sisyphean task.

And in today’s gospel reading even Jesus, the son of the most high God, has the same battle. Tempted in the wilderness by the devil with food, and by earthly power and glory, Jesus is human after all.

How Jesus deals with temptation shows us the way. He turns to God and the devil leaves him alone until another day.

Indeed, Jesus responds with quotations drawn from the Old Testament that show awareness of the true source of life and identity (he knows that life is more than food), his reliance on God (the one worthy of true worship and service), and his understanding of God’s character (not one to be tested)

Jesus’ responses are rooted in an underlying narrative that he is dependent on God rather than self for life, glory, and identity.

Lent is, of course, our time to turn to God. We use this time in our tradition to deepen our relationship with Him as we live through and echo the forty days of wilderness that Jesus endured.

Lent is heralded by Ash Wednesday, which we marked this week, in which we promise to turn away from sin and turn towards Christ. And Lent ends with Maundy Thursday when we remember the last supper and focus on the forgiveness and reconciliation of the Eucharist.

At this time of examination and deepening of our faith, my challenge to you is not to rely on yourself and your own means to resist the temptations and inducements that draw you away from God – whatever they may be – but to consciously try to rely just a little bit more on God.

Turn to Him in your wilderness, turn to Him when you need help to make the right decision, turn to Him in all things. Because therein lies the path to holiness we, as Christians and as followers of Jesus, are all compelled to seek.

Amen

Next Week
Sunday 20th March
Third Sunday of Lent

 

NOTICES

Church of England Lent Reflections and
Diocese Weekly Newsletters

You might be interested to receive the daily Lent reflections from the Church of England. Here is the link to sign up to their email reflections

https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/
what-we-believe/lent-holy-week-and-easter
/livelent-embracing-justice-our-lent-reflections

To keep up with weekly news from our Diocese you can sign up to receive the weekly newsletters here:
https://cofesuffolk.org/subscribe-to-our-newsletters

 

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MOTHERING SUNDAY POSIES

We will be making posies on the 26th March from 10am in the vestry, for our Mothering Sunday Service at Aldeburgh. Do come along and help if you can spare the time.
If you can spare any greenery, please do leave it in the west porch before the 26th. Thank you

Church of England and Diocese Online Worship 

There are many online services you can view from the Church of England and our cathedral. Here are some links below.

Church of England website

https://www.churchofengland.org/
prayer-and-worship/church-online/
weekly-online-services

Church of England Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/
thechurchofengland/

Church of England YouTube channel

https://www.youtube.com/

channel/UCLecK8GovYoaYzIgyOElKZg

St Edmundsbury Cathedral Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/
stedscathedral

Food Banks at the East of England Co-op

Foodbanks provide a valuable service to those in need in our communities. The Aldeburgh Co-op and Solar in Leiston are doing a grand job in collecting food donations, which are collected regularly and distributed. So please look out for the various collection baskets.

The Trussel Trust Organisation

Food banks in our network have seen an increase in the number of food parcels given out over the last year due to Coronavirus, so any donations are much appreciated. You can find out which items your local food bank is most in need of by entering your postcode here – https://www.trusselltrust.org/give-food/

 

Weekly Benefice Newsletter 

If you would like something added to the weekly newsletter that is relevant to the Benefice, please do let Claire know and we will do our best to include it the following week.

All requests by 4pm on Thursday please

Pilgrims Together on Wednesdays 

The Pilgrims worship together every Wednesday.
You are all more than welcome to join them via Zoom.  
The worship starts at 6.30pm (Zoom call opens from 6.10pm) and the call is then left open after the worship time for people to catch up.   People are welcome to email pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
to receive a copy or be added to our mailing list.

Friday 18th March 6.30pm Aldeburgh Parish Hall F2F Pilgrims

We will be gathering for f2f worship followed by a time of fellowship.  We are very excited, almost 2 years to the day (it was 4th March 2020 when we last gathered together inside).

Worship material will all be provided so there is nothing to print off.

We will place chairs a safe distance apart and the hall will be well ventilated.
Please do wear a mask if you feel more comfortable with that.

Following our time of worship, we will also have a time of sharing fellowship and food: You may bring your own plate of food for yourself. We will bring the usual bread cheese / jam fare should you wish to have a bite from that selection. Teas and coffees should you wish…

If you need a lift, please do say…that can be organised!

Lunchtime Concert at Aldeburgh Parish Church

Monday 4th April at 12 noon

Following the huge success of Nadia’s concert with us in October, we welcome Nadia’s and friends, to raise more money for Save the Children.

ROBIN SOLDAN – FLUTE

NATHANIEL HARRISON – BASSOON

NADIA LASSERSON – PIANO

Trios by Bach, Beethoven & Donizetti

Admission free- a retiring collection for Save the Children

Save the Children - Community Information Centre

All welcome

Aldeburgh Youth Club Returns

As we emerge from the Covid restrictions we have had to follow during the past two years, we look forward to a time when we can meet up again and get back to hobbies, activities, and clubs.  The first Monday would be May 9th, due to the various Bank Holidays. We will be meeting from 7 to 9pm at the Fairfield Centre. We are delighted to be able to welcome youngsters aged 10 to 14 years. We would welcome volunteers to help us with our programme of activities, so, if YOU are interested and enjoy the company of young people, please get in touch with me, at :-admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk

Fran Smith, Lay Elder, Aldeburgh Parish Church

Benefice Newsletter for Sunday 6th March – First Sunday of Lent


A Prayer for Ukraine

God of peace and justice,
We pray for the people of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for those who fear for tomorrow,
that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment, and compassion to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear,
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Amen.
Archbishop Justin Welby, Archbishop Stephen Cottrell

Red Cross – Ukraine Crisis Appeal
The collection for this Sunday’s 10.30am service at Aldeburgh will be donated to the Red Cross Charity.

Here is their pledge on the Red Cross website:
People are losing their homes and lives; families are being separated. Essential services, like water and healthcare, are under threat.    Please donate today if you can.

The people caught up in this conflict must be supported and protected.
Even before recent developments, this eight-year conflict has hit people daily on all levels. It’s brought suffering, death, injury, and separation from loved ones, as well as the huge mental toll of ongoing violence and insecurity.

Further escalation could worsen an already appalling humanitarian situation and wreak havoc on more lives.
Your donation could help someone affected get:
Food, water, first aid, medicines, warm clothes & shelter

If you would like to contribute to the collection, please contact admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk and we will advise how you can donate.

Services this Sunday for The Alde Sandlings Benefice

Aldeburgh

8.00am

Holy Communion

 

10.30am

Service of the Word

Aldringham

11.00am

Holy Communion

Knodishall

9.00am

Holy Communion

Collect
Almighty God, whose Son Jesus Christ fasted forty days in the wilderness,
and was tempted as we are, yet without sin:
give us grace to discipline ourselves in obedience to your Spirit;
and, as you know our weakness, so may we know your power to save;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.


First Reading
Deuteronomy 26.1-11
When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance to possess, and you possess it, and settle in it, you shall take some of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you harvest from the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name. You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time, and say to him, ‘Today I declare to the Lord your God that I have come into the land that the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.’ When the priest takes the basket from your hand and sets it down before the altar of the Lord your God, you shall make this response before the Lord your God: ‘A wandering Aramean was my ancestor; he went down into Egypt and lived there as an alien, few in number, and there he became a great nation, mighty and populous. When the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, by imposing hard labour on us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors; the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. The Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders; and he brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. So now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground that you, O Lord, have given me.’ You shall set it down before the Lord your God and bow down before the Lord your God. Then you, together with the Levites and the aliens who reside among you, shall celebrate with all the bounty that the Lord your God has given to you and to your house.

Second Reading
Romans 10.8b-13
But what does it say? ‘The word is near you, on your lips and in your heart’ (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For one believes with the heart and so is justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved. The scripture says, ‘No one who believes in him will be put to shame.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and is generous to all who call on him. For, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’

Gospel Reading
Luke 4.1-13
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing at all during those days, and when they were over, he was famished. The devil said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become a loaf of bread.’ Jesus answered him, ‘It is written, “One does not live by bread alone.”  Then the devil led him up and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And the devil said to him, ‘To you I will give their glory and all this authority; for it has been given over to me, and I give it to anyone I please. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.’ Jesus answered him, ‘It is written, “Worship the Lord your God,
and serve only him.” Then the devil took him to Jerusalem, and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written, “He will command his angels concerning you, to protect you”, and “On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.” ’ Jesus answered him, ‘It is said, “Do not put the Lord your God to the test.” ’When the devil had finished every test, he departed from him until an opportune time. 

Post Communion
Lord God, you have renewed us with the living bread from heaven;
by it you nourish our faith, increase our hope,
and strengthen our love: teach us always to hunger for him who is the true and living bread, and enable us to live by every word that proceeds from out of your mouth; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Sermon preached by The Revd James Marston at
Aldeburgh 27th February 2022

Luke 9.28-36

May I speak in the name of the living God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit

“And his clothes became dazzling white”

Not only have we got a dazzling white Jesus, but we’ve got an account of an event taking place high up on a mountain, involving Moses and Elijah – both characters from ancient history, a bright cloud and then, to cap it all, a mysterious voice telling people to listen. No wonder the disciples kept quiet.

Yesterday afternoon I saw five wedding couples – as you might imagine we have something of a glut of matrimonials this year.

And after asking questions about each special day which all include flowers and bells and hymns, I must admit that like St Peter and his companions I did feel somewhat weighed down with sleep.

However, meeting these couples was quite good fun. Indulging my inquisitive streak I got to hear and ask about all the various receptions planned, I was appraised of a review of the quality of the food at a number of venues across east Suffolk, and I got to know in advance what cars the brides might be arriving in, as well as asking the strange questions demanded by the church of England – “what is your father’s rank or profession” and “what is your condition?” – a question which usually raises an eyebrow as it sounds like I’m asking if the bride is pregnant.

I suspect some of this energetic activity on my part was to avoid writing a sermon. Because our reading today begs the obvious and challenging question – what on earth is going on in this bizarre story? It is a question that can’t really be answered that easily.

This event, we’ve just heard about, is known as the Transfiguration, is not just in the gospel according to Luke either. It appears in Mark’s and Matthew’s accounts and the second letter of Peter, so try as we might, we can’t ignore it by avoidance tactics.

Nonetheless this theophany – a theological word which means a visible manifestation to humankind of God – has quite a bit for us to think about.

Obviously, the transfiguration is a supernatural event that Luke is recording is something that defies explanation. It is a mystery, a concept that we, as Christians, are not unused to as part and parcel of faith. It is ok not to have all the answers.

But what we can say is that the transfiguration is a turning point. A moment in which Jesus’ ministry of teaching, healing, and preaching, looks forward to Jerusalem, the shame of the cross and the glory of the resurrection – indeed as a foretaste of Jesus’ shining light as the son of God, the transfiguration is a cautionary tale – that the message and glory of Jesus can only be understood in relation to the death and resurrection of Christ. Liturgically it is of course a harbinger of what is to come in Holy Week – as we come together to think and pray about the last supper, crucifixion and resurrection on Easter Sunday.

The traditional interpretation of the appearance of Moses and Elijah points towards the claim that Christ is the fulfilment of the law – Moses – and the fulfilment of the prophets – Elijah. That Jesus is a fulfilment of all that God has promised and that Jesus life on earth accomplishes this promise.

The transfiguration not only looks forward to the final act of Jesus’ salvific action but also to his past – expressly his baptism, for at Jesus’ baptism the same voice says a very similar thing “This is my son, the beloved, with him I am well pleased: listen to Him.”

The transfiguration also refers to water – through this reference to baptism – and to light – Jesus is dazzling, and the cloud is bright and His face shining like the sun – and water and light, as we heard just a week or two ago are the two primal elements, we find in the creation stories. Indeed, the water and the light motifs are like a constant signpost to the divine through the Holy Scriptures.

This event, this transfiguration, is also a moment of revelation. A reminder to us in this troublous world, that Jesus is here, Jesus is divine and that we have no need to fear.

Our worshipping community is in something of a state of limbo, we are waiting for a new incumbent – a period in which we are asked to pause and reflect and not to do too much yet also to keep going, to keep the faith, it is a challenge we are facing together.

But I think the transfiguration, for all its meanings and mystery, is also, at its root a timeless and repeated invitation to follow Christ, to keep the faith and to keep going and to never lose sight of the hope and wider perspective Jesus offers.

In this event we see Jesus in his glory, in his dazzling white, revealed as the living God, in a moment of illumination. The story of redemption, of Calvary, of troubles ahead, has yet to be worked out. Yet the transfiguration assures us that the ultimate victory of the cross and resurrection, the ultimate victory of light, the ultimate victory of God, is secured.

I have no spiritual challenge, no little task, no thought to think about for you this week, but I thought it might be a good idea to remind you that I, and other clergy, are here living among you and alongside you as a presence in your community. My door is open to you and my prayers are with you. And across our benefice our church communities are all keeping going as best we can.

A final thought: As Christians in this place and in these days, we can, at least hold on to the fact that whatever happened on that high mountain on that strange day we are left with hope, a hope that can make all the difference, a hope that can keep us going in our own times of uncertainty, a hope in God, that can we can rely on and a hope that ultimately transforms and transfigures our own lives.

Amen

Church of England Lent Reflections and
Diocese Weekly Newsletters

You might be interested to receive the daily Lent reflections from the Church of England. Here is the link to sign up to their email reflections

https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/
what-we-believe/lent-holy-week-and-easter/livelent-embracing-justice-our-lent-reflections

To keep up with weekly news from our Diocese you can sign up to receive the weekly newsletters here:
https://cofesuffolk.org/subscribe-to-our-newsletters

Next Week
Sunday 13th March
Second Sunday of Lent

 

NOTICES

Church of England and Diocese Online Worship

There are many online services you can view from the Church of England and our cathedral. Here are some links below.

Church of England website

https://www.churchofengland.org/
prayer-and-worship/church-online/weekly-online-services

Church of England Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/
thechurchofengland/

Church of England YouTube channel

https://www.youtube.com/
channel/UCLecK8GovYoaYzIgyOElKZg

St Edmundsbury Cathedral Facebook Page
https://www.facebook.com/
stedscathedral

 

Lent Sessions
Will take place in the vestry of Aldeburgh church and in the home of Jill Brown, who has kindly offered to host an evening session through the Lenten period.
The dates and times are as follows:
Wednesday’s 11am, Aldeburgh church Vestry –
hosted by Rev’d James – beginning on March 2
Thursdays 7pm, Onemana, Alde House Drive, Aldeburgh, IP15 5EE hosted by Jill Brown – beginning on March 3

Food Banks at the East of England Co-op

Foodbanks provide a valuable service to those in need in our communities. The Aldeburgh Co-op and Solar in Leiston are doing a grand job in collecting food donations, which are collected regularly and distributed. So please look out for the various collection baskets.

The Trussel Trust Organisation

Food banks in our network have seen an increase in the number of food parcels given out over the last year due to Coronavirus, so any donations are much appreciated. You can find out which items your local food bank is most in need of by entering your postcode here – https://www.trusselltrust.org/give-food/

 

Weekly Benefice Newsletter

If you would like something added to the weekly newsletter that is relevant to the Benefice, please do let Claire know and we will do our best to include it the following week.

All requests by 4pm on Thursday please

Pilgrims Together on Wednesdays

The Pilgrims worship together every Wednesday.
You are all more than welcome to join them via Zoom.  
The worship starts at 6.30pm (Zoom call opens from 6.10pm) and the call is then left open after the worship time for people to catch up.   People are welcome to email pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
to receive a copy or be added to our mailing list.

Friday 18th March 6.30pm Aldeburgh Parish Hall F2F Pilgrims

We will be gathering for f2f worship followed by a time of fellowship.  We are very excited, almost 2 years to the day (it was 4th March 2020 when we last gathered together inside).

Worship material will all be provided so there is nothing to print off.

We will place chairs a safe distance apart and the hall will be well ventilated. Please do wear a mask if you feel more comfortable with that.

Following our time of worship, we will also have a time of sharing fellowship and food: You may bring your own plate of food for yourself. We will bring the usual bread cheese / jam fare should you wish to have a bite from that selection. Teas and coffees should you wish…

If you need a lift, please do say…that can be organised!

pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 

A message from Adrian Brown –
Aldeburgh Church Treasurer

Would you like to donate to our Church?

We hugely rely on regular donations to enable us to open our doors daily for people to visit and worship in our beautiful church.  Can you help, but haven’t got the cash on you?  We now have a contactless

terminal next to the sidespeople handing out service booklets so donations may be made before or after a service, or why not sign up to the Parish Giving Scheme and donate as often as you want.  

Ask a Church warden or sidesperson for more information.  
We cannot thank you enough for your donations.

Lunchtime Concert at Aldeburgh Parish Church

Monday 4th April at 12 noon

Following the huge success of Nadia’s concert with us in October, we welcome Nadia’s and friends, to raise more money for Save the Children.

ROBIN SOLDAN – FLUTE

NATHANIEL HARRISON – BASSOON

NADIA LASSERSON – PIANO

Trios by Bach, Beethoven & Donizetti

Admission free- a retiring collection for Save the Children

Save the Children - Community Information Centre

All welcome

Aldeburgh Youth Club Returns

As we emerge from the Covid restrictions we have had to follow during the past two years, we look forward to a time when we can meet up again and get back to hobbies, activities, and clubs. We will all be responsible for our own health and well-being from now on. It has been a very difficult time for many people, and we are thinking especially of the youngsters, as our Youth Club had to stop meeting two years ago. We are planning to start Youth Club meetings again in the school summer term, after Easter, when we will be able to have the windows open and the doors to the garden open at the Fairfield centre, weather permitting, thus limiting the chances of infection from Covid.
The first Monday would be May 9th, due to the various Bank Holidays. We will be meeting from 7 to 9pm at the Fairfield Centre. We are delighted to be able to welcome youngsters aged 10 to 14 years. It will be a new start for all of us. We would welcome volunteers to help us with our programme of activities, so, if YOU are interested and enjoy the company of young people, please get in touch with me, at :-admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk

We have a meeting for staff and volunteers on Monday 7th March at 7pm at the Fairfield Centre, if you would like to be part of the team, do come along. We need ideas and plans for the future.
Fran Smith, Lay Elder, Aldeburgh Parish Church

Benefice Newsletter for Sunday 27th February – Sunday next before Lent

A Prayer for Ukraine

God of peace and justice,
We pray for the people of Ukraine today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for those who fear for tomorrow,
that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment, and compassion to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear,
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.
Amen.


Archbishop Justin Welby, Archbishop Stephen Cottrell

 

Services this Sunday for The Alde Sandlings Benefice

Aldeburgh

10.30am

Holy Communion

 

6.00pm

Evening Prayer

Aldringham

11.00am

Morning Prayer

Friston

9.00am

Morning Prayer

Knodishall

9.00am

Morning Prayer

 

Message from Revd James Marston

Dear All,

As we approach Easter – a time for our worshiping community to come together in prayer and in celebration – we first mark the 40 days of Lent – a period in which we remember Jesus’ 40 days in the wilderness fasting and praying.

Lent is also a time we observe in order to come closer to God through prayer, study, devotional practices and other spiritual disciplines.

As part of our Lent offering in the benefice we will be offering a fairly gentle study and discussion course based on the passion of Jesus Christ according to St Mark.

This will take place in the vestry of Aldeburgh church and in the home of Jill Brown, who has kindly offered to host an evening session through the Lenten period.

The dates and times are as follows:

Wednesday’s 11am, Aldeburgh church Vestry –
hosted by Rev’d James – beginning on March 2

Thursdays 7pm, Onemana, Alde House Drive, Aldeburgh, IP15 5EE –
hosted by Jill Brown – beginning on March 3

These sessions are open to all in the benefice and are also an opportunity to get to know one another a bit better and reform friendships. I’m hoping they’ll be quite fun and relaxed as we study together. Do bring a bible and turn up as you wish.

In the meantime, we mark the beginning of lent with a Holy Communion service with ashing at Aldeburgh Church at 10am on March 2. As our church elder Julian Worster is providing the ash please put any Palm Sunday crosses you might have in his letterbox at 41, Alde Drive, Aldeburgh if you can.

James

 

Collect
Almighty Father,
whose Son was revealed in majesty
before he suffered death upon the cross:
give us grace to perceive his glory,
that we may be strengthened to suffer with him
and be changed into his likeness, from glory to glory;
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
Exodus 34.29-end
Moses came down from Mount Sinai. As he came down from the mountain with the two tablets of the covenant in his hand, Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone because he had been talking with God. When Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, the skin of his face was shining, and they were afraid to come near him. But Moses called to them; and Aaron and all the leaders of the congregation returned to him, and Moses spoke with them. Afterwards all the Israelites came near, and he gave them in commandment all that the Lord had spoken with him on Mount Sinai. When Moses had finished speaking with them, he put a veil on his face; but whenever Moses went in before the Lord to speak with him, he would take the veil off, until he came out; and when he came out, and told the Israelites what he had been commanded, the Israelites would see the face of Moses, that the skin of his face was shining; and Moses would put the veil on his face again, until he went in to speak with him.

Second Reading
2 Corinthians 3.12-4.2
Since, then, we have such a hope, we act with great boldness, not like Moses, who put a veil over his face to keep the people of Israel from gazing at the end of the glory that was being set aside. But their minds were hardened. Indeed, to this very day, when they hear the reading of the old covenant, that same veil is still there, since only in Christ is it set aside. Indeed, to this very day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their minds; but when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And all of us, with unveiled faces, seeing the glory of the Lord as though reflected in a mirror, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord, the Spirit. Therefore, since it is by God’s mercy that we are engaged in this ministry, we do not lose heart. We have renounced the shameful things that one hides; we refuse to practise cunning or to falsify God’s word; but by the open statement of the truth we commend ourselves to the conscience of everyone in the sight of God.

Gospel Reading
Luke 9.28-36
Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter, John, and James, went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him. They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.  Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, ‘Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah’—not knowing what he said. While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, ‘This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!’ When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.

 

Post Communion
Holy God, we see your glory in the face of Jesus Christ:
may we who are partakers at his table
reflect his life in word and deed,
that all the world may know his power to change and save.
This we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Next Week
Sunday 6th March
First Sunday of Lent

 

Sermon preached by The Revd James Marston at
Aldeburgh 20th February 2022

Luke 8: 22-25

May I speak in the name of the living God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

As some of you know I am a fan of the poet John Betjeman. I’ve quoted him before and find his craftsmanship with words, though not currently fashionable among the intelligentsia, comforting and often apposite.

Indeed, last night as I rode out Storm Eunice in the rectory – and I’m sure you’ll be unsurprised to know I took the precaution of putting my little blue car safely in the garage – I came across his poem “Blame it on the vicar”

Betjeman writes

When things go wrong it’s rather tame
To find we are ourselves to blame,
It gets the trouble over quicker
To go and blame things on the Vicar.

Betjeman goes on

The Vicar should be all pretence
And never, never give offence.
To preach on Sunday is his task
And lend his mower when we ask
And in his car to give us lifts
And when we quarrel, heal the rifts.
And when we’re rude he should be meek
And always turn the other cheek.
He should be neat and nicely dressed
With polished shoes and trousers pressed.

I make no comment though I have to admit to being rather amused by Sir John’s insight.

Of course, in his other church poems Betjeman speaks eloquently of primroses in churchyards, the mysterious godhead as well as the glowing coals of the faithful in their accustomed pews.

Betjeman may not be cutting edge by 21st century standards but his poetry still strikes a powerful chord, still holds a mirror up to the human condition, still inspires and makes us think, still reminds us who we are.


Today’s gospel reading from Luke, so apt following yesterday’s storm, reminds us too of a few universal truths.

Firstly, that God commands the winds and waves. That creation itself, the world around us, is in God’s hands and it is he who has dominion not us. That it was God who created the heavens and the earth around us is a powerful statement of our faith.

Indeed, this revelation also, perhaps, points us away from our overinflated sense of self, especially when we consider at any length our own tiny place in creation.

Secondly, this passage reminds us who Jesus is. God incarnate and among us. The story of the calming of the storm comes amid a series of healings and miracles that all point towards who Jesus is – something extraordinary and something new.

Indeed, this passage comes straight after an incident in which Jesus’s family turn up to see him and Jesus, informed of their presence announces: “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”

As well as a reminder that faith is a way of living and something we do rather than simply saying we have, this extraordinary statement about mother and brothers highlights a distinct break with the past, as well as reminding us that the claim of God on Jesus’ life was absolute, as it must be for us as we follow Him.

Finally, it seems to me, this incident reminds us that there is no half measures with faith. When we face danger or difficult times – which we all do from time to time – our initial reaction is often to try to solve the problem ourselves. Just like the disciples on the lake we turn to God when things go wrong rather than when they are going right.

We all too often call out for help and throw ourselves on the mercy of God when we come to the end of our own resources and when there’s nothing else that will help.

The calming of the storm questions the presence of faith in our lives – do we trust Him or don’t we? And if we do trust in God then we are not at the mercy of the storm.

My challenge to you this week is not to rush back to your bookshelves looking for reassurance from John Betjeman or to simply pay lip service to your faith, but to consider, as we approach lent, where you are on your journey.

Are you committed to your faith? Is your faith active or a little bit stuck? What do you need to do to develop your faith? How might you trust in God more deeply, and love him more nearly, day by day.

Let us pray

Almighty and eternal God, by your Holy Spirit you have revealed to us the gospel of your Son, Christ Jesus. Awaken our hearts that we may sincerely receive your Word.

Lead us to fear you and daily grow in faith, help us along the journey, be with us through the storms of life, guide us as we learn and deepen our love for you.

We ask this through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one true God, now and forever.

Amen

Church of England and Diocese Online Worship 

There are many online services you can view from the Church of England and our cathedral. Here are some links below.

Church of England website

https://www.churchofengland.org/prayer-and-worship/
church-online/weekly-online-services

Church of England Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/
thechurchofengland/

Church of England YouTube channel

https://www.youtube.com/
channel/UCLecK8GovYoaYzIgyOElKZg

St Edmundsbury Cathedral Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/stedscathedral


St Andrew’s Church Invites You
Pancakes at the Pub
Shrove Tuesday 1st March at The Dolphin
from 3.15pm

David (at The Dolphin) and his wonderful team invite you to
come to their pancake kitchen. There will be lots and
lots of different fillings for you to fill your pancakes.
So do come along and get ready for Lent by having a lot
of fun, and most probably plenty of mess along the way.
The perfect opportunity to simply being together. 
Come and join in the pancake-ing
ALL ages from littlest to oldies
with various other activities for the children.


Proceeds to St Andrew’s Church

World Day of Prayer
You are warmly invited to join the churches of Aldeburgh on Friday 4th March 2022 – 11am, to celebrate the World Day of Prayer.  This year we are praying for England, Wales & Northern Ireland.  As well as the usual Friday morning Service, followed by a free soup & bread lunch. We are also planning to have “WDP for Kids”, a Messy Church type activity, on Saturday 5th March – 10am for families and children. 
Do make a note of these in your diaries! These will be both held at Aldeburgh Parish Church and the Church Hall. Can you help on the day? To register the children, look after the craft activities, and help with refreshments?  If you would be willing to come and get involved in any capacity, please email admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk and we will put you in touch.

Weekly Benefice Newsletter
If you would like something added to the weekly newsletter that is relevant to the Benefice, please do let Claire know and we will do our best to include it the following week.

All requests by 4pm on Thursday please

Food Banks at the East of England Co-op

Foodbanks provide a valuable service to those in need in our communities. The Aldeburgh Co-op and Solar in Leiston are doing a grand job in collecting food donations, which are collected regularly and distributed. So please look out for the various collection baskets.

The Trussel Trust Organisation

Food banks in our network have seen an increase in the number of food parcels given out over the last year due to Coronavirus, so any donations are much appreciated. You can find out which items your local food bank is most in need of by entering your postcode here – https://www.trusselltrust.org/give-food/

Pilgrims Together on Wednesdays

The Pilgrims worship together every Wednesday.
You are all more than welcome to join them via Zoom.  
The worship starts at 6.30pm (Zoom call opens from 6.10pm) and the call is then left open after the worship time for people to catch up.   People are welcome to email pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
to receive a copy or be added to our mailing list.


Saturday 26th February – Zoom Pilgrim Fun Quiz 7pm
Just for fun from the comfort of your own armchair

Contact the Pilgrims for the links etc pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 


Saturday 5th March  Pilgrim Community Breakfast and Ramble starting at the Parrot Pub at 9.30am for Breakfast.

As you are also aware Storm Eunice prevented us from meeting f2f last Friday. We will try again on Friday 18th March and Friday 22nd April. So, we look forward to and pray ahead to Friday 18th March as our first indoor Pilgrims worship since the first Covid lockdown rather than last Friday!! More information to follow nearer the time.

Benefice Newsletter for Sunday 20th February – Second Sunday before Lent

Services this Sunday for The Alde Sandlings Benefice

Aldeburgh

8.00am
10.30am

Holy Communion
Morning Prayer

Aldringham

11.00am

Holy Communion

Knodishall

9.00am

Holy Communion

 

Message from Revd James Marston

Dear Everyone,
As we continue to pray for a new priest, our period of pause and reflection continues as well. Yet alongside this our churches continue to adjust to the relaxation of restrictions as we move towards spring. 

With this in mind please note the following: 

Communion 
Following discussions with my fellow priests, from March onwards we will be administering the sacrament from the communion rail, communion wine from the common cup will be offered to those that wish to receive it.  The Church of England’s policy of no intinction – dipping the bread into the communion chalice – remains in place and is unlikely to change.  
Bread only remains a valid option for those still nervous about the common cup.  There is no pressure to take communion.  

Masks 
Just to clarify mask wearing is optional in church services.  

Lent 
We are planning to study and reflect on the passion of the Christ according to St Mark in our Lent course, details to follow.  

Regards

James 

Collect
Almighty God,
you have created the heavens and the earth
and made us in your own image:
teach us to discern your hand in all your works
and your likeness in all your children;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who with you and the Holy Spirit reigns supreme over all things,
now and for ever.

First Reading
Genesis 2.4b-9, 15-end
These are the generations of the heavens and the earth when they were created. In the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens, when no plant of the field was yet in the earth and no herb of the field had yet sprung up—for the Lord God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was no one to till the ground; but a stream would rise from the earth, and water the whole face of the ground— then the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and the man became a living being. And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed. Out of the ground the Lord God made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food, the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, ‘You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall die.’ Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper as his partner.’ So out of the ground the Lord God formed every animal of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper as his partner. So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; then he took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said, ‘This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; this one shall be called Woman, for out of Man this one was taken.’ 
Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and clings to his wife, and they become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked, and were not ashamed.

Second Reading
Revelation 4
After this I looked, and there in heaven a door stood open! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, ‘Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.’ At once I was in the spirit, and there in heaven stood a throne, with one seated on the throne! And the one seated there looks like jasper and cornelian, and around the throne is a rainbow that looks like an emerald. Around the throne are twenty-four thrones, and seated on the thrones are twenty-four elders, dressed in white robes, with golden crowns on their heads. Coming from the throne are flashes of lightning, and rumblings and peals of thunder, and in front of the throne burn seven flaming torches, which are the seven spirits of God; and in front of the throne there is something like a sea of glass, like crystal. Around the throne, and on each side of the throne, are four living creatures, full of eyes in front and behind: the first living creature like a lion, the second living creature like an ox, the third living creature with a face like a human face, and the fourth living creature like a flying eagle. And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all around and inside. Day and night without ceasing they sing,
‘Holy, holy, holy, the Lord God the Almighty, who was and is and is to come.’  And whenever the living creatures give glory and honour and thanks to the one who is seated on the throne, who lives for ever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall before the one who is seated on the throne and worship the one who lives for ever and ever; they cast their crowns before the throne, singing, ‘You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honour and power, for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.’

 

Gospel Reading
Luke 8.22-25
One day he got into a boat with his disciples, and he said to them, ‘Let us go across to the other side of the lake.’ So they put out, and while they were sailing he fell asleep. A gale swept down on the lake, and the boat was filling with water, and they were in danger. They went to him and woke him up, shouting, ‘Master, Master, we are perishing!’ And he woke up and rebuked the wind and the raging waves; they ceased, and there was a calm. He said to them, ‘Where is your faith?’ They were afraid and amazed, and said to one another, ‘Who then is this, that he commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him?’

Post Communion
God our creator, by your gift
the tree of life was set at the heart of the earthly paradise,
and the bread of life at the heart of your Church:
may we who have been nourished at your table on earth
be transformed by the glory of the Saviour’s cross
and enjoy the delights of eternity;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Next Week
Sunday 27th February
Sunday next before Lent

 

Sermon preached by The Revd Sheila Murray at
Friston 13th February 2022

Jeremiah 17:5-10 1 Cor 15:12-20 Luke 6:17-26 Proper 2 13.2.22

Woe betide you! This is a phrase which is very rarely used nowadays, if at all. But when I was younger, and I suspect for some of you sitting here today, it was used quite a lot at school. Our Headmistress used to stand in front of us all in Assembly, with her glasses perched on the end of her nose, she looked down on us all, as we sat crossed legged on the splintery floor, and wagging her finger she would say very quietly “Woe betide you if…..” it could be something along the lines of woe betide you if you have not revised for your exams; woe betide you if you are ever seen pushing another child over or out of the way in a queue; or woe betide you if you are rude to a member of staff and so on. And what woes would betide us? Writing lines, litter picking, milk bottle duties, detention, or the worst phoning your parents summoning them to her study. I often thought our parents were more scared of her than we were! And why did she threaten us with her “woes” – because she had standards, school rules, and she expected us all to live to those standards when we were on the school premises.

And here in today’s gospel reading we also have standards, standards Jesus expected and still expects his followers to follow, standards of conduct which contrast with worldly standards or values. These verses are called the Beatitudes, from the Latin meaning blessing. We are more used to hearing or reading the Beatitudes from Matthew’s Gospel as part of Christ’s Sermon on the Mount. Some say that this is Luke’s version of that event, others say that he preached a similar message on many different occasions. Whichever is the case, Christ’s message is very similar.

The Bishop of Ripon, Dr Helen-Ann Hartley says this: “This gospel passage comes from Luke’s sermon on the plain, which takes its name from the level place on which Jesus stood. In Matthew’s Gospel this appears as the Sermon on the Mount and is much longer. The context for Luke’s presentation of Jesus’ teachings is important. Jesus, who has spent the previous night in prayer before choosing his disciples, now addresses them, but in the hearing of a great crowd.” Bishop Helen-Ann goes on to say “The Beatitudes are meant for everyone, not just the chosen few. If we weep and are hated, well we are blessed; if we are rich or full, well that’s bad news; if we laugh or if people speak good of us, that won’t do either. But is it as stark or black or white as this? Surely laughter is a good thing.”

Luke’s Gospel is rich with the imagery of roles reversed; Luke is saying something about the gospel message that is deeply unsettling and challenging. He is not saying that the differences between rich and poor, happy, and sad will be eradicated; he is saying that everyone, whatever their state in life, will find their lives turned upside down by the power of a gospel proclaimed by God who became incarnate, one of us, in the powerlessness of a baby, and who picked as his closest companions a group of ordinary men and women.

So when Jesus blesses the poor and hungry, the sorrowful and the ridiculed, he isn’t saying that we should all aspire to poverty, hunger, sorrow, or being verbally abused. He is saying that God is present with us, even when the world has abandoned us, that God loves us, even when everyone else hates us.

Woe to them! Jesus’ agenda is designed to shock; nothing less will jolt devious hearts into thinking straight about what really matters.

 

When Jesus announces woe to those who are rich, to those who eat well, and to those who enjoy fame and admiration from people, he isn’t saying that wealth, good food, and popularity are bad things. He is saying that when we are focused on satisfying our own appetites, we have turned our attention away from God, and our self-centeredness will be our spiritual doom.

And it’s not just about physical things, I think Christ is also saying it relates to our emotional and spiritual lives too.

When we seek God, we feel the pain and sorrow God feels for people who are hurting. How did you feel when you heard the news a few weeks ago at the loss of lives when one of the many inflatable boats sank in the

Channel packed to the gills with asylum seekers including children?
How did you feel when you heard the details of the poor young boy Arthur who was killed after being tortured time and time again by his Step Mother? I wonder if any of you saw a programme on the BBC a couple of weeks ago on the anniversary of the Holocaust, when 7 survivors had their portraits painted commissioned by Prince Charles to go into Buckingham Palace Gallery, but each survivor told some of their awful stories and what happened to them and their families, how did you feel hearing of their terrible plight?

We need to stand up to injustice. We affirm that every human being is worthy of love in God’s sight. And God wants every person on earth to know him and love him.

Amen

 

NOTICES

World Day of Prayer
You are warmly invited to join the churches of Aldeburgh on Friday 4th March 2022 – 11am, to celebrate the World Day of Prayer.  This year we are praying for England, Wales & Northern Ireland.  As well as the usual Friday morning Service, followed by a free soup & bread lunch. We are also planning to have “WDP for Kids”, a Messy Church type activity, on Saturday 5th March – 10am for families and children. 
Do make a note of these in your diaries! These will be both held at Aldeburgh Parish Church and the Church Hall. Can you help on the day? To register the children, look after the craft activities, and help with refreshments?  If you would be willing to come and get involved in any capacity, please email admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk and we will put you in touch.

 

Weekly Benefice Newsletter

If you would like something added to the weekly newsletter that is relevant to the Benefice, please do let Claire know and we will do our best to include it the following week.

All requests by 4pm on Thursday please

Food Banks at the East of England Co-op

Foodbanks provide a valuable service to those in need in our communities. The Aldeburgh Co-op and Solar in Leiston are doing a grand job in collecting food donations, which are collected regularly and distributed. So please look out for the various collection baskets.

The Trussel Trust Organisation

Food banks in our network have seen an increase in the number of food parcels given out over the last year due to Coronavirus, so any donations are much appreciated. You can find out which items your local food bank is most in need of by entering your postcode here – https://www.trusselltrust.org/give-food/

Pilgrims Together on Wednesdays

The Pilgrims worship together every Wednesday.
You are all more than welcome to join them via Zoom.  
The worship starts at 6.30pm (Zoom call opens from 6.10pm) and the call is then left open after the worship time for people to catch up.   People are welcome to email pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
to receive a copy or be added to our mailing list.

Saturday 26th February – Zoom Pilgrim Fun Quiz 7pm
Just for fun from the comfort of your own armchair…Please email Sue and Richard if you can provide a round: pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
Saturday 5th March  Pilgrim Community Breakfast and Ramble starting at the Parrot Pub at 9.30am for Breakfast.

A message from Adrian Brown –
Aldeburgh Church Treasurer

Would you like to donate to our Church?

We hugely rely on regular donations to enable us to open our doors daily for people to visit and worship in our beautiful church.  Can you help, but haven’t got the cash on you?  We now have a contactless terminal next to the sidespeople handing out service booklets so donations may be made before or after a service, or why not sign up to the Parish Giving Scheme and donate as often as you want.  

Ask a Church warden or sidesperson for more information.  
We cannot thank you enough for your donations.

 

✟ Church of England and Diocese Online Worship

There are many online services you can view from the Church of England and our cathedral. Here are some links below.

Church of England website

https://www.churchofengland.org/
prayer-and-worship/church-online/weekly-online-services

Church of England Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/
thechurchofengland/

Church of England YouTube channel

https://www.youtube.com/
channel/UCLecK8GovYoaYzIgyOElKZg

St Edmundsbury Cathedral Facebook Page

https://www.facebook.com
/stedscathedral

Benefice Newsletter for Sunday 13th February – Third Sunday before Lent

Services this Sunday for The Alde Sandlings Benefice

Aldeburgh

10.30am

Holy Communion

Aldringham

Friston

11.00am

9.00am

Service of The Word

Holy Communion

Knodishall

9.00am

Morning Prayer

Collect
Almighty God, who alone can bring order
to the unruly wills and passions of sinful humanity:
give your people grace so to love what you command
and to desire what you promise,
that, among the many changes of this world,
our hearts may surely there be fixed
where true joys are to be found;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever

First Reading
Jeremiah 17.5-10
Thus says the Lord: Cursed are those who trust in mere mortals
and make mere flesh their strength, whose hearts turn away from the Lord. They shall be like a shrub in the desert and shall not see
when relief comes. They shall live in the parched places of the wilderness,
in an uninhabited salt land.  Blessed are those who trust in the Lord,
whose trust is the Lord.  They shall be like a tree planted by water,
sending out its roots by the stream. It shall not fear when heat comes,
and its leaves shall stay green; in the year of drought, it is not anxious,
and it does not cease to bear fruit.  The heart is devious above all else;
it is perverse who can understand it?  I the Lord test the mind and search the heart, to give to all according to their ways, according to the fruit of their doings. 

Second Reading
1 Corinthians 15.12-20
Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; and if Christ has not been raised, then our proclamation has been in vain, and your faith has been in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified of God that he raised Christ—whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised. If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile, and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have died in Christ have perished. If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied. But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have died.

Gospel Reading
Luke 6.17-26
He came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea, Jerusalem, and the coast of Tyre and Sidon. They had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases; and those who were troubled with unclean spirits were cured. And all in the crowd were trying to touch him, for power came out from him and healed all of them. Then he looked up at his disciples and said: ‘Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. ‘Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you will be filled.
‘Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. ‘Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice on that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets.  ‘But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation. ‘Woe to you who are full now, for you will be hungry.
‘Woe to you who are laughing now, for you will mourn and weep. ‘Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets.

Post Communion
Merciful Father,
who gave Jesus Christ to be for us the bread of life,
that those who come to him should never hunger:
draw us to the Lord in faith and love,
that we may eat and drink with him
at his table in the kingdom,
where he is alive and reigns, now and for ever.

 

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BANK HOLIDAY & STAFF TRAINING CLOSURE DATES

The surgery will be closed for staff training on Wednesday 09.03.22 from 13.00.

When the surgery is closed please call NHS 111

Peninsula Practice Patient Experience Survey

Healthwatch Suffolk (HWS) is working with Peninsula Practice and the Patient Participation Group to evaluate the support and services provided by the practice.

Now, as a patient at the practice, we would like to hear about your views and experiences again to see what’s working well and what could be improved.

This information will help Peninsula Practice develop future plans to provide the best healthcare possible for you.

How to take part [Online]

The survey will be open until the 18st March 2022. You can complete the survey by going to: https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/
s/PeninsulaPractice2022/

The survey should take around 10 minutes to complete.

Paper copy surveys should be returned via freepost to: Freepost HEALTHWATCHSUFFOLK

This survey is also available in Easy Read. Please call the practice on 01394 411641 to request an Easy Read version. www.thepeninsulapractice.co.uk

 

 

Sermon preached by The Revd Mark Booth at
Aldeburgh 6th February 2022

OT Isaiah 6.1-8 ~ Isaiah’s Vision of God
NT Luke 5.1-11 ~ Jesus calls his First Disciples 

Our lessons today provide us with:

  • two examples of religious experience: VISION & CALL;
  • two contexts for that experience: place of WORSHIP & place of WORK;
  • two reactions, or consequent stages in the journey of faith: CONVICTION of sin & COMMITTMENT of life.

Isaiah’s VISION of God and Christ’s CALL of Peter and the first disciples illustrate for us how compelling and life-changing Christian experience can be.

Alas, they may also leave us with a sense of OBLIGATION that we also have to experience such a vision and such a call, in such terms, in similar dramatic form, if we are to be ‘proper Christians’.

Biblical passages such as these may leave us with a sense of FRUSTRATION & DISAPPOINTMENT that such experience seems beyond the grasp or ordinary, everyday folk like you and me. As if it is reserved for ‘high-flyers’, for the ‘better class’ of believer, for the specially ‘gifted’.

May I dare to reassure you: such things are not matters of human DESERVING or MERIT. They are not the ENTITLEMENT of a few. Rather, they are of God’s GRACE & LOVE.

These things are certainly no justification for that predatory preaching which seeks to pressure people into believing. The Christian life is surely not about what God wants FROM us, but what God wants FOR us. The call to faith is about OFFER, not DEMAND. Conversion and commitment to Christ is about INVITATION, not COMPULSION. The life of faith and discipleship, of following Jesus, is about God’s Holy Spirit BECKONING us, not BULLYING us, bringing us along with Him, not breaking us down.

Coming from the fish and chip end of the business as I do, I trust I may be forgiven for having a vision of God rather less exalted than that of Isaiah. I sometimes think that my vision of God is of a white, male, English, Methodist, who wears a beard and sandals, reads the Guardian and lives on a cloud suspended two miles above Aldeburgh . . .

No doubt your vision of God will be refracted by the material of your life and be just as personal, just as idiosyncratic. All our visions of God will be illumined by our joint experience of God’s revelation, by our common human needs and by the unique particularities and peculiarities of our experience of Creation, of Church and of Community.

What is your vision of God?

How did it, does it, come to you?

What difference does it make to your faith and life?

What difference does it make to your view of the Church, of Society, of our way of living and being together, of our politics, of our world order?

Think about your vision . . .

Talk about it . . .

Write about it . . .

Represent it in your art, your craft, your labour, your profession, your toil, your everyday tasks . . .

Dwell on it . . .

Examine it . . .

Look more closely at it . . .

Listen more carefully . . .

Reflect on what you see and hear . . .

Consider what you make of it . . .

Ask yourself about it . . .

Ask yourself what it means to you, what it means for you . . . ?

What did it mean for Peter, James, and John to have such a vision of God in Christ, to actually see God, not in all his holiness, high and lifted up – in the place of worship – God in all his divine glory – but God entered into our human condition – in the place of work? What did it mean for those first disciples to see God in the mundane actuality of their ordinary, everyday, lived experience, in their place of work, with all its constraints and opportunities? What did it mean for them to encounter God in their harsh reality, in their same old same old, and then, in difference, in change, in amazement and in wonder . . . ?

For both the Old Testament Isaiah and the New Testament Peter, James and John – and for so many others in the life of the early Church and ever since – their vision, their experience of God – however high and lifted up, however ‘low’ and simply present – led to a sense of call and to a response to that call which meant their leaving their nets behind them, following the way, the truth, the life of Jesus, in the power of his Holy Spirit, and going on, as reported later in the New Testament, to turn the world upside down.

Now, I do not mean to denigrate or diminish the possibility today of people experiencing such visions and calls marked by such drama, immediacy, and power.

I do, however want to assert, and proclaim that for many, maybe for most, of us:

  • A mere glimpse may be enough, a flickering adjustment in perception, one of those changes or chances of this fleeting world . . . One such small, not necessarily earth-shattering, event, may be sufficient to alter our view, to deepen our grasp of the reality of God and ourselves . . .
  • A whisper may be all it takes – a door slightly ajar, a crossroads, a path seldom or never before taken – to bring about difference, to take us in a new direction, to open up new ways of being, new fields of service, new depths of love and faith . . .

Vision and call may be part of God’s revelation and purpose for each one of us, not only in the apparently supernatural, but in a host of simple ways.

God reveals his saving love and transforming will for us, not only in the place of worship, but also in the place of work; not only on the Road to Damascus (or even the Highway to Hell); but on the High Street, in the ‘fast track’, in the slow lane, on the long and winding road, along the dusty path, the old railway line, the beach, or the track around the marshes

God makes himself known to us mostly in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, in the movement of his Holy Spirit, blowing where and when he wills.

God envisions us and calls us however God wills: in signs and wonders; in word and sacrament; in the ordinary, everyday, gradual unfolding of life and faith; and in our growing awareness and perception – step by step, little by little, bit by bit; all by his grace and love alone and to the glory of his name. Amen.

 

NOTICES

World Day of Prayer
You are warmly invited to join the churches of Aldeburgh on Friday 4th March 2022 – 11am, to celebrate the World Day of Prayer.  This year we are praying for England, Wales & Northern Ireland.  As well as the usual Friday morning Service, followed by a free soup & bread lunch. We are also planning to have “WDP for Kids”, a Messy Church type activity, on Saturday 5th March – 10am for families and children. 
Do make a note of these in your diaries! These will be both held at Aldeburgh Parish Church and the Church Hall. Can you help on the day? To register the children, look after the craft activities, and help with refreshments?  If you would be willing to come and get involved in any capacity, please email admin@aldeburghparishchurch.org.uk and we will put you in touch.

 

Weekly Benefice Newsletter

If you would like something added to the weekly newsletter that is relevant to the Benefice, please do let Claire know and we will do our best to include it the following week.

All requests by 4pm on Thursday please

Bell Ringers at Aldeburgh Parish Church
Six ringers drawn from the Monday evening practice band were pleased to ring a quarter peal for the 70th anniversary of the accession of H.M. Queen Elizabeth II last Sunday afternoon. It is also hoped to attempt a full commemorative peal this coming Sunday afternoon with a band of ringers drawn from across the diocese.

Food Banks at the East of England Co-op

Foodbanks provide a valuable service to those in need in our communities. The Aldeburgh Co-op and Solar in Leiston are doing a grand job in collecting food donations, which are collected regularly and distributed. So please look out for the various collection baskets.

The Trussel Trust Organisation

Food banks in our network have seen an increase in the number of food parcels given out over the last year due to Coronavirus, so any donations are much appreciated. You can find out which items your local food bank is most in need of by entering your postcode here – https://www.trusselltrust.org/give-food/

Looking for something to read?

No doubt you have seen our beautiful library of books in our Visitors Corner. Please could we encourage you to take one home to read and perhaps tell us what it meant to you. We hope to put a few out in the Bible slots in the pews which you are very welcome to take home to read otherwise please leave them in situ. Thank you

Jill Brown

Pilgrims Together on Wednesdays

The Pilgrims worship together every Wednesday.
You are all more than welcome to join them via Zoom.  
The worship starts at 6.30pm (Zoom call opens from 6.10pm) and the call is then left open after the worship time for people to catch up.   People are welcome to email pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com 
to receive a copy or be added to our mailing list.

Friday 18th February 6.30pm Aldeburgh Parish Hall

A potential long hoped and prayed for return to a face to face Pilgrim Worship and shared supper gathering. More details to follow..

Saturday 26th February online Zoom Pilgrim Fun Quiz from 7pm (please note change of date)

Just for fun from the comfort of your own armchair…Please email Sue and Richard if you can provide a round:
 pilgrimstogether473@gmail.com

A message from Adrian Brown –
Aldeburgh Church Treasurer

Would you like to donate to our Church?

We hugely rely on regular donations to enable us to open our doors daily for people to visit and worship in our beautiful church.  Can you help, but haven’t got the cash on you?  We now have a contactless terminal next to the sidespeople handing out service booklets so donations may be made before or after a service, or why not sign up to the Parish Giving Scheme and donate as often as you want.   Ask a Church warden or sidesperson for more information.  
We cannot thank you enough for your donations.

✟ Church of England and Diocese Online Worship

There are many online services you can view from the Church of England and our cathedral. Here are some links below.

Church of England website

https://www.churchofengland.org/
prayer-and-worship/church-online/weekly-online-services

Church of England Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/
thechurchofengland/

Church of England YouTube channel

https://www.youtube.com/
channel/UCLecK8GovYoaYzIgyOElKZg

St Edmundsbury Cathedral Facebook Page

https://www.facebook.com/stedscathedral

Next Week

Sunday 20th February

Second Sunday before Lent