Making God's Love Known In Windsor
As of 5 Jan 2021, Windsor is now under Tier 5 COVID restrictions (lockdown), however, communal services are still permitted in places of worship. Sunday services will still be conducted at 10 a.m. every Sunday, but we understand that you may not be able to join us in person and warmly invite you to join us virtually. To attend by Zoom, please contact us for a link, or watch the live stream on Facebook.
Our Epiphany service on 3 Jan 2021 was recorded and you can watch it on YouTube.
Evening prayer Monday to Friday 6 p.m. and Night prayer Sunday 9 p.m. will be live streamed from our Facebook page.
I have fond memories of my mother, an English teacher, standing at the kitchen sink, hands in soapy dishwater looking out at the garden to the fields beyond lost in thought. When my sister or I noisily broke into her reverie she would sometimes recite the words of a poem by W.H. Davies, "What is this life if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare".
For many people 2020 has been a year when there has been more time to stand and stare than they may have wanted or wished for. For many people it has been a time when it has been necessary to call upon inner reserves of strength in order to cope with long days alone. Of course, there has been a tremendous growth in our collective online and web-based skills but nevertheless the loss of human contact has for many of us been a very challenging part of our current situation.
But having time to stand and stare has been a positive too. Having time to watch the seasons change, to appreciate birds and butterflies and flowers growing in unexpected places or simply to sit still has been for many a blessing.
In the busy-ness of Christmas, finding time to stand and stare does not necessarily come easily. However hard we try, it is difficult not to get caught up in the frenzy of present buying, food shopping, card writing and tree decorating. And suddenly it is over and the New Year is upon us again and we all try to get back to normal. This year the normal we get back to may still feel very abnormal.
When the Magi arrive at the place where the star stops and find the Christ child with his mother Mary, before they leave their gifts, they kneel down and pay homage. They kneel and stare. This Christmas take time yourself to enter into the familiar story of our Lord’s birth. Read the words afresh. Enter into the stable, stand with the shepherds, pay homage with the wise men and ponder with Mary the mystery of the incarnation. Emmanuel means God with us. Take time to step aside from the “doing” of Christmas and take time to “be”. Stand, stare and experience the love of Christ that you might be strengthened to face whatever 2021 brings with it.
May I take this opportunity to wish you all a blessed Christmas and peaceful and safe New Year.
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’). Due to COVID19, services do not currently finish with coffee or sherry, but we hope to restart these when possible. 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 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 (outside of COVID-19), 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.
We are committed to safeguarding children, young people, and vulnerable adults. The parochial church council has adopted the Church of England’s policies and best practice on safeguarding which may be found on the Church of England’s website. Our Parish Safeguarding Representative is Laura Betteridge and she may be contacted at church or by email.