Despite the fact that we know that Good Friday is not the end of the story, I find the journey to Calvary during Holy Week painful and deeply moving. I have tried to explain it to myself. Is it that I question where were all those people that Jesus helped and healed, and all those who, only days before, had strewed his path with palms and cried “Hosanna to the King”, as he entered Jerusalem? Or is it that I wonder what I would have done, had I been there? It is too easy to say I would have stood up for Jesus. We would all say that, wouldn’t we? Peter swore to die with him, but, as we know, Peter denied him 3 times, as Jesus predicted he would. Judas, one of those who had been closely with him throughout his ministry, betrayed him, as Jesus said he would. In fact, all the disciples, we are told, ran away and left Jesus to his fate – to be taunted and tortured by a cruel militia; to be tried by Pontius Pilate, the Roman Procurator, who could find no fault with him, yet still bowed to the wishes of the religious leaders who had brought false charges against him, wanting his death; even when offered a last chance to save him, the crowd cried “Crucify him!” Then, as the Saviour of the World hung on the cross, he was taunted by those who suggested he should save himself, if indeed he was who he said he was. It took a hardened Roman centurion, charged with the unenviable task of carrying out the barbaric crucifixion, on seeing the way that Jesus died, to say, “Truly, this man was the Son of God”. Over the years, as I have reflected, I have come to realise that every single one of the participants in the Easter story had an essential part to play, and, without any one of them, including Judas, the story could not have unfolded as it did. And every one of them, and indeed us, is the beneficiary of Jesus’ words from the cross – “Father, forgive them; they don’t know what they are doing”. It is a hard lesson to take; but we know already that, after the agony and suffering of Good Friday comes the promise of hope on Easter Sunday; on Easter morning we can exclaim triumphantly with the women who went to his tomb and found it empty, “The Lord is risen; Jesus is alive”. Alleluia! I wish you all a very happy Easter and all the hope that Easter brings.
Julie, our parish administrator, is now on holiday until Monday 12th April. Any urgent queries should be addressed to one of the churchwardens – phone numbers provided at the end of the bulletin.
There will be no bulletins next week and the next will be on Monday 12th April.
Programme for Holy Week
1st April – Maundy Thursday recorded service online at 7pm.
2nd April – Good Friday Children’s Service in church at 10am.
2nd April – At the Cross recorded reflection online at 2pm.
4th April – Easter Sunday Parish Communion at 10am in church and online.
4th April – Easter Sunday service at St Andy’s at St Oswald’s Church at 3.30pm.
The PCC has agreed that the church can re-open for live worship on Easter Sunday. There will also be a Children’s Service on Good Friday at 10am. The church will also open for private prayer on Thursdays from April 8th.
Due to limited seating, places may be reserved by contacting Julie on a first come, first served basis. As before, we urge you if you have an invitation not to forget and if you are suddenly unable to attend to let us know at the earliest possible moment. Face masks continue to be required. If you see anyone not wearing a face mask, it is because they have medical exemption. We are not allowing any other exception. It is imperative the rules are strictly adhered to. This means gelling hands immediately upon arrival, taking your pew straight away as directed by the steward including whether to sit by the wall or the aisle; not moving from your place at any point during the service; and leaving promptly afterwards.
Please note that seats for Easter Sunday and Good Friday Children’s Service are now fully booked.
If you wish to book a seat for Sunday services from 11th April onwards please contact Julie on 07756 918847 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Cleaning the Church
As we are opening the church again from Easter Day, our thoughts are turning back to cleaning the building. Currently, we have a very small team who are on the rota to clean once a week. The team is Phil and Denise Davies, Diane Wilson, Becky Crowe and I who clean on a voluntary basis. Ideally, we would like to add some more volunteers to help us.
It normally takes a couple of hours to clean the church and side room (we are not cleaning upstairs currently) to make sure it is ready for a service on Sunday.
Cleaning of the building is important at the moment, not just to show visitors that the church is cared for, but also as part of the arrangements to allow us to open the church safely. Would you be able to help? If so, please email me at email@example.com
Thank you, Nick Tooby
Do you have any digital photos of church events with groups of people on them i.e. people at The Strawberry Tea’s or other social type events, that we can use in the Parish Profile? I’m looking for photo’s not including Greg and/or Fran please. If you have can you send them to me urgently via email or some other electronic means at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you, Nick.
The date of the church’s annual meeting has been set for Monday 17th May at 7.30pm via zoom. The access codes to join the meeting will be available nearer the time.
The APCM will elect churchwardens and PCC members. If you are an existing PCC member, would you please let Julie know if you are willing to stand next year by 10th May or if you are interested in standing, please let the one of the churchwardens know.
Children’s Society Boxes
it’s that time of year, so if you have a money collection box can you either leave it in church please, or contact me to collect it. I will not be able to personally collect the boxes till mid-April. Thank you for your support and a special thank you to Jackie Lynch who has stood down this year as the Children Society parish representative. Nick Tooby.
In Coventry the number of infections has reduced but numbers are now levelling off. The vaccine roll out continues and anyone aged over 50 who has not yet had the first dose of vaccination are encouraged to book an appointment by calling your GP, 119 or through NHS website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/
The first stage of the Government’s Road Map began this week with people able to meet outside within the rule of six or two households (see guidelines below). The advice from Coventry City Public Health is that it is still important to keep to the rules about social distancing, even if you have had one or both doses of your vaccination.
As of the 29th March guidelines have changed and you are able to;
- Meet in outdoors spaces in a group of up to 6 people OR 2 households (this can also be in private gardens). However, you should continue to social distance when doing this and not mix indoors.
- Outdoor sports facilities can open, like tennis or basketball courts, golf courses and open air swimming pools, and people will be able to take part in formally organised outdoor sports. Parent and child groups can take place outdoors in public spaces.
- Clinically extremely vulnerable people in England are no longer advised to shield from 1 April 2021, but are advised to continue taking extra precautions such as keeping social interactions low and shopping at quieter times of the day.
- See link for poster; https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/974017/COVID-19_Roadmap_Posters_Step1_web.pdf
- More details on guidelines; https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-response-spring-2021/covid-19-response-spring-2021-summary
Phil’s Leaving Service
Sunday the 25th April will be Phil’s last service at St Andy’s. The service will also be in person at St Oswald’s, but if you are interested in attending that one please let Julie know on email@example.com. We will also be streaming the service on Facebook for those that can’t attend.
Phil Richardson’s Leaving
As you probably know our Curate, Phil Richardson, will be leaving us at the end of April. If you would like to contribute to a leaving gift for Phil please use the following link.
Alternatively, if you would prefer to make a cash donation please pass this to either of the churchwardens, Nick Tooby and Becky Crowe, or the parish administrator, Julie Crow.
Phil’s last service at St Andy’s is on 25th April and 18th April at St Andrew’s. It would be good to get any donations to us by the week before at the latest (18th April). Any ideas for a gift are welcome!
Youth Wellbeing Course
St Andrew’s is running a 6-week course on youth wellbeing for ages 8-14 on Wednesdays 6pm-7pm via zoom. Starting April 21st. For more information contact Emma on firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are looking to safer recruit volunteers for our Youth work. If you feel you could help with either the Drama Club, Rock Solid or the Youth Wellbeing course then please get in touch with Emma at email@example.com
Building Our Faith
Following completion of our Lent series our Wednesday evening Bible study will be taking a break over the Easter period. We restart on Wednesday 28th April at 7.30pm on zoom. All are welcome to join us, Sue Masters.
Have you ever thought about joining a book club, been a member of one in the past or thought that’s not for me? Is now the time to think about being part of St. Andrew’s book club?
We set up the book club two years ago and although interrupted briefly by Covid have continued to meet over zoom. Some members have recently left the area and so we are relaunching and looking to encourage more people to join.
Our next meeting is on Tuesday 8th June at 7.30pm on zoom (We hope to resume in person meetings at a later date). The book we have chosen is The Shack by William P Young. This is a novel published in 2008 and is a story of how a grief-stricken man’s encounter with God changes his life forever. You may have read it before but we felt it was worth revisiting.
We would love more people to join with us to read and discuss the book. If you have any questions please contact Sue Masters on 07958 322026.
To donate to Central foodbank, Sue Barnes is coordinating this so please contact her to drop off food at her house. Contact Sue at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are unable to give food you can also donate online here: https://www.trusselltrust.org/rddonate-checkout/
Sunday Coffee Gathering
The access codes for the 11.15am Sunday gathering are available from the churchwardens.
I still have many 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles and a few 500-piece puzzles which are available for anyone to loan. If you would like one (or more) please contact Julie on 07756 918847 or email@example.com. If you are unable to collect a jigsaw please give me a call and I can arrange for one to be delivered to you. Please note that jigsaws will be available until the end of April.
To Beryl Cooper whose birthday is this Saturday and to Graham Shelton who celebrates his birthday on Easter Sunday.
Please pray for John Shelton who is now home from hospital but has a long recovery ahead.
Please also pray for St Andrew’s as work continues to take place in the process of finding a new vicar.
Do send Julie your favourite bible verses or hymn verses, names for prayer and any birthdays, celebrations or articles for inclusion in the bulletin. Julie can be contacted on 07756 918847 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Parish Administrator: Julie Crow – 07756 918847
Churchwardens: Nick Tooby – 07951 925772 or Becky Crowe – 07875 552518