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Rector's View - March 2010

Dear friends,

Lent Course

There is still the opportunity to join our Lent Course, which is entitled: "When I survey … Christ's Cross and ours". We shall meet on Monday 22nd February and on Mondays 1st, 8th, 15th and 22nd March at 7.30pm in the Benefice Hall. Everyone is very welcome.

The course booklet, written by The Rev'd Dr John Pridmore, includes questions aimed at provoking wide-ranging discussion. Each group member needs a course booklet, which costs £3. This is the only expense involved in this five session course. An interesting feature of this course is that there is an accompanying CD, in which distinguished Christian speakers give some input into each session. The participants on the course CD are John Bell, General Sir Richard Dannatt and Dr Christina Baxter. Dr David Hope introduces the course and Colin Morris provides the Closing Reflection at the end of each session.

There will also be the opportunity to chat informally over tea or coffee. Please consider joining us, if you are able to.

Mothering Sunday

Mothering Sunday, this year, falls on 14th March. We will be celebrating the day with a service for the whole Benefice at St. Mary's, Lidgate at 10.00am. All Christians have the opportunity to give thanks for our mother the Church, which loves us and nurtures us and cares for us from birth to death. It is also, of course, an opportunity to give thanks for, and to, our own mothers and to show our appreciation for all that they do for us. For those of us who have lost our mothers it is an opportunity to say thank you for all that they have done for us, and to pray that God will care for them and look after them, as they looked after us, and to pray that through God's mercy we may be re-united with them one day. As part of the service, flowers will be blessed and given to all the ladies present. If you are free, why not join us?

Holy Week and Easter

Palm Sunday, this year, falls on 28th March. There will be a Benefice service at Wickhambrook, beginning with a procession with Palm Crosses from the Benefice Hall at 10.00am.

The service for Maundy Thursday, 1st April, will take place at 7.00pm at Stansfield. This will be followed by the Watch of the Passion for one hour. People gather, for as long or short a time as they wish, to remember, in prayer, the agony of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane on the eve of his brutal death for our sakes.

Good Friday services, on 2nd April, begin with the Churches Together United Walk of Witness, with readings, prayers and hymns, setting out from the URC at 10.00am and walking together to the Methodist Church. Then there are two devotional services later in the day - "An Hour at the Cross" at Denston at 2.00pm and then "Stations of the Cross" at Lidgate at 6.00pm.

On Easter Eve, 3rd April, we gather at Wickhambrook, where we celebrate the Easter Vigil starting at 8.00pm. This is a service rich in symbolism and drama, as we rejoice that Jesus has burst from the tomb. We start with a new fire in the darkness of the churchyard to bless the Paschal Candle, and then we enter the Candlelit church, before we build up to the blaze of the church lights, which herald the Resurrection.

Easter Day, 4th April, is the Sunday of Sundays. We joyfully celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord and Saviour, and the new life which he brings to us. The Benefice shares in the glory of the Risen Christ with a Eucharist at Ousden at 10.00am. An evening service will be held at Stradishall, beginning at 6.00pm.

Everyone is most welcome to attend any or all of our services.

With every blessing for a holy and joyful Easter,

Stephen

Rev'd Stephen Abbott

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Last Modified Friday 08 June 2012