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2 December 2018 3 p.m. Christingle Service.
Family-friendly service for Christingle. All are welcome!
Sunday 16 December. 10 a.m. Sung Eucharist.
Christmas Eve 24 December 3 p.m. Crib Service.
Christmas Eve 24 December 11:30 p.m. Midnight Mass.
Christmas Day 25 December 10 a.m. All Age Eucharist.
St Stephen's Day 26 December 10 a.m. Said Eucharist.
Sunday 20 January 10 a.m. Patronal Mass for St Stephen & St Agnes.
Sunday 10 a.m. Sung Eucharist. Common Worship (1 hour).
Sunday 10 a.m. All Age Eucharist. First Sunday of the month (1 hour).
Tuesday 9:30 a.m. Eucharist. (No Tuesday service in August)
Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. –John 12. 24.
Ainsley and Kate have now moved to new challenges and both take up their future roles this month. We give grateful thanks for them both, and especially for Ainsley’s long ministry in Windsor and pray too for their families in pastures new. Remember too, Margaret Bird’s tireless ministry in this town as we wish her well in her retirement.
As we move into a time of vacancy I am reminded of a lovely story I once heard in a sermon given by a priest who was retiring.
It was about a nanny whose task it was to look after a family of children. The work involved taking them out and about in a busy town. She frequently chided he children by repeating the expression, “Remember Lot’s wife, now keep up!” She seemed completely oblivious to the fact that it was highly unlikely that the poor, small children had any idea of why they were being told to remember Lot’s wife!
Those who remember their Old Testament Bible stories will, unlike those poor children, know the fate of Lot’s wife. In Genesis 19, God decrees the judgement of Sodom and Gomorrah because of the evil in those two cities. Lot appeals to the angels who appear, saying that he is a good and godly man with a wife and family. Even though he is told to leave because the destruction of the cities is imminent, he lingers. Eventually he and his family leave but with these words of the angels ringing in their ears, “Flee for your life: do not look back or stop anywhere on the plain: flee to the hills, or else you will be consumed!” Alas for Lot’s wife she looked back and was turned to a pillar of salt!.
As we continue to serve God and the people of the New Windsor Team we clearly need to look forward not back. No threatening pillars of salt here, but simply the challenge that our three parishes offer!
One of the things that we can do in this time of Vacancy is to celebrate and value all the gifts that people have and are offering, often quietly and unseen in all our churches. We should not take each other’s efforts for granted, especially when people may be taking on extra commitments because they see the need.
I, and I am sure all the other clergy helping to ‘keep the show on the road so to speak’ , would encourage you to use the opportunity to speak to our Churchwardens about your thoughts for the future needs of the Team. Use the times that Rev. June is offering to talk and pray with other members of our congregations and keep the channels of communication open, particularly across our four churches.
It is especially important for everyone to remember that we are in a Team of churches that want to reach out into society and include all those people who feel drawn to God, through our doors. Our ministry of welcome and pastoral care is valued by those who, only occasionally cross our thresholds.
So, as we move forward into high summer, a time of holidays and revitalisation let us pray giving thanks for the past but looking firmly to the future. Don’t forget, ‘Remember Lot’s wife!” Keep looking forward.
We thank you for the three Parishes of our Team,
for their homes and businesses, busy streets,
communities and meeting places,
and for all those who live, work, play and worship here.
Now we ask you to raise up for us a new priest to serve you and lead us:
one who will come among us, be like our patron saints, as a faithful companion and a healer,
able to listen but also to challenge, ready to learn as well as to teach;
a friend of yours who will quickly become our friend too.
Give us above all someone who will work tirelessly alongside us,
to proclaim afresh in our time and place
the Good News of your overflowing love
for everyone in Jesus Christ our Lord,
in whose Name we pray.
Father John Quick
Come join us!
You are welcome to join us at St Stephen and St Agnes, regardless of race or gender or sexuality. We are part of the Church of England and our worship style is modern catholic: this means the service uses contemporary English, but still has ritual and incense (‘smells and bells’). Services finish with Fairtrade tea and coffee, or a glass of sherry if that is what you prefer. There is a Fairtrade stall selling a variety of goods from Traidcraft (chocolate, biscuits, tea, coffee, rice, Christmas cards later in the year, etc.)
There is a Sunday School at the 10 a.m. service. There are areas in the church that make it easy for parents with prams or people in wheelchairs to join the worship. Our congregation age ranges from babies to 98-year-olds. On the first Sunday of the month, we have a family service with home-baked cakes. Study and discussion groups are available throughout the year with special courses run during Advent and Lent.