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St George’s Church, Great Bromley

Newsletter

Holy Week and Easter 2021

Dear Friends

Welcome back to church!

Lt Bentley was first off the blocks; last Sunday they had an inspiring congregational evensong with solo singers.

Gt Bromley starts again at 10.30am on Palm Sunday, 28th March: congregation welcome. See below for our full programme of Holy Week and Easter services.

APCM
The annual election of churchwardens, and the parochial meeting (APCM) took place on Zoom on 21st March. Thank you to all who attended. Jenny Nicholls and Gregory Frostick were elected as churchwardens and Henry Fairley, Yvonne Cobbold, Rosemary Heaney, Michael Scargill, Graeme Bruce, and Guy Everington were elected to the Parochial Church Council. There is no Deanery Synod representative but Gregory was appointed Deanery Secretary last year so in effect we have a rep.

The meeting thanked Marion Bromfield, who has retired from the PCC, for her long service as Treasurer to the PCC. Also to Guy for taking on this role. Thanks were also given to Leonie Henderson and to Janet Jolley who stepped down from the PCC this year. The meeting accepted the Report and Financial Statements for 2020. With the generosity of our members and supporters the PCC managed to break even financially in 2020 despite the difficulties of lockdown. If you would like a copy of the report or financial statements please let us now by email, or pick up a copy in church.

With thanks to our Area Dean for offering us her Easter message below. Best wishes

Gregory and Jenny

Churchwardens

From The Revd Liz Barnes

Area Dean of Harwich

The Hope of Easter

‘Christ is risen!’

‘He is risen indeed!’

‘Alleluia’

That ringing Easter acclamation echoes round our churches each Sunday of the Easter season every year and it still brings the same joy, excitement and wonder that seized the very first disciples.

As it turned out, that first Easter Day was to be for the early disciples the most memorable day of their lives. Soon after daybreak they heard that the tomb was empty; they heard that Jesus had already appeared to Mary Magdalene. The message of the resurrection sends Mary Magdalene running from the empty tomb in amazement, it brings peace to the apostles cowering behind locked doors, it drives Thomas to his knees uttering the words ‘My Lord and my God!’

Thomas has gone down in history as the doubter; the one who would not believe what the others told him; the realist, the pragmatist, who wanted proof for himself. And he maintains this attitude for a whole week. A week! A week is a long time – in religion as well as in politics.

Thomas goes from one end of the spectrum to the other. Thomas the doubter becomes Thomas the believer. The final irony is that the disciple who doubted the most, is the one who believes the most. “My Lord, and my God” is the deepest statement of belief in any of the gospels.

The event of the resurrection of Jesus is totally beyond our powers of explanation through which God speaks to us. Whatever happened at the tomb on that first Easter morning means that life will triumph over death, and that hope is the true posture of the human spirit.

The resurrection of Jesus is the greatest life-giving and life-enhancing sign of all, and Easter is a message of life, of the ultimate triumph of God’s loving purposes which gives us the key to the meaning of life, the universe and everything.

If, as the high of Easter fades from our minds, we begin to wonder about the reality, the veracity, of it all, If, you sometimes find it hard to believe the events of the first Easter, if you ever have moments of doubt – take heart from Thomas.

What Jesus said to Thomas – and what he says to us as well – is that it is ok to have doubts. That doubts are, in a sense, part of the process of coming to faith.

The prayer “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief”, is the prayer of many Thomases.

May we all have minds open to the possibility that Easter was no ancient legend of someone being brought to life again, but the supreme miracle in which, as C S Lewis put it, ‘God leaned against the flywheel of history and reversed its direction’.

With love and prayers

Revd Liz

Tuesday 23rd March ~ Day of Reflection

A minute’s silence was kept at St George’s at noon. The bell was tolled and then the Chair of the Parish Council lit a candle to reflect on our collective loss over the past year.

Thursday 25th March ~ Lady Day

On Youtube from Little Bromley Church

The Feast of the Annunciation will be celebrated at St Mary’s Church, Lt Bromley: a contemplative, said Holy Communion according to the Book of Common Prayer.

This is our last Youtube service without congregation and can be seen on Youtube from 11am on Thursday 25th March, or any time after that.

Here is the Annunciation scene from the Stone window at Gt Bromley.

Services for Palm Sunday and Holy Week

Congregation welcome to all services

Palm Sunday March 28th ~ Procession with donkey and Eucharist at 10.30am. (Remember that the clocks go forward this weekend.)

Holy Week March 29th-30th-31st ~ Morning Prayer at 10.00am each day at Little Bromley Church

Maundy Thursday 1st April ~ Eucharist of the Last Supper at 7.00pm

Good Friday 2nd April ~ at Little Bentley Church at 11.00am

Easter Day 4th April ~ Parish Eucharist at 10.30am

Service details for April

These are shown on the website along with the services at Little Bentley and Lawford. Here is the link.

Marsabit ‘Five Talents’ Lent Appeal

Help to give direct hope to our partner diocese in Kenya.

We have raised over £200 so far and are collecting cheques (or cash) to make a donation from St George’s but you can also donate directly.

Please drop off donations to Jenny or email us to arrange collection from you.

Thank you for your support

Foodbank Appeal

Thanks to all those who have supported our collections for the foodbank. You can place items in the foodbank baskets at the Manningtree Co-op, deliver to Foundry Court by arrangement, or get in touch with us to collect if you have several items. There is a link to the Manningtree Foodbank from the image below.

Manningtree and District Foodbank

Stations of the Cross

bowed head of Christ

Easter Lilies

As usual we will be buying lilies to add to the Easter flowers in St George’s. If you would like to contribute to the liles fund, perhaps in memory of a family member or friend, please contact Jenny.

Music for Holy Week

From St Paul’s Cathedral with music by Sir John Goss:

O Saviour of the World, who by thy Cross and precious blood has redeemed us.

Goss’ “O Saviour of the world”: St Paul’s Cathedral 1991 (John Scott)

Music for Easter

Cai Thomas, one of the finest boy trebles of our time sings Mozart's Laudate Dominum, Psalm 117.

O praise the Lord, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people. For his merciful kindness is ever more and more towards us: and the truth of the Lord endureth for ever. Praise ye the Lord.

Welsh boy treble Cai Thomas sings Laudate Dominum | from the recording studio

This Joyful Eastertide - an old Dutch carol. Here it is from Kampen in the Netherlands, accompanied by the great Sietze de Vries.

This joyful Eastertide - Kampen Boys Choir - Sietze de Vries, orgel

…and some Easter dances to accompany your Easter egg!

Laurens de Man - Drie dansen van Tielman Susato - Bovenkerk Kampen

Art

‘Reflections of Lockdown’ Exhibition: Harwich Festival has arranged a ‘Reflections’ exhibition online with some wonderful local photographs.

Reflections of Lockdown photographic exhibition by Harwich Festival

Sacred Places

Lockdown has made many people realise how much they valued their churches - the sacred places in our communities.

When the communist dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu bulldozed much of Bucharest, the historic capital, people did not allow all their churches to be destroyed. Here are some pictures of what they did with 12 of the churches; they moved them!

Moving Romanian churches to save them.

Here’s a tonic for those of you missing visits to France and also missing the sound of St George’s bells. We will have to wait till May before our bells can ring again.

Ringing the bells: Church towers and steeples in south-western France

Poetry

This poem was featured in one of our Lent Discussion Groups. We liked it very much.

The Dawning by George Herbert

Awake sad heart, whom sorrow ever drowns;

Take up thine eyes, which feed on earth;

Unfold thy forehead gather’d into frowns:

Thy Saviour comes, and with him mirth:

Awake, awake;

And with a thankfull heart his comforts take.

But thou dost still lament, and pine, and crie;

And feel his death, but not his victorie.

Arise sad heart; if thou dost not withstand,

Christ’s resurrection thine may be:

Do not by hanging down break from the hand,

Which as it riseth, raiseth thee:

Arise, Arise;

And with his buriall-linen drie thine eyes:

Christ left his grave-clothes, that we might, when grief

Draws tears, or bloud, not want an handkerchief.

Giving to St George’s

Thank you all for your support which is invaluable to the continuing work of the church. If you would like to help, please see the Donation details on the website.

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