BIBLE STUDY GROUP
Bible Study Group meetings resume this month and our meetings will take place on Wednesdays 12thand 26thSeptember. We meet at 2.30pm. at Oakhurst (behind Kingshott School) home of Margaret Edmonds. We will be continuing our study of The Book of Genesis. Refreshments are served after the meeting.
New members would be most welcome so do come and
join us. For further information please contact Margaret Edmonds (01462-452340) or Clare Larsen (01462-453541).
CHRISTMAS SHOE BOX APPEAL
With the summer we are having this year it seems almost impossible to speculate on which day might be the hottest. But it does seem rather ironic to be sitting here on oneof the hottest days of the year trying to write an article about Christmas! However, believe it or not, in a couple of weeks it will be time to start thinking about this year’s Christmas Shoebox Appeal.
Once again, in our benefice, we shall be supporting the Link to Hope charity in Sussex who send boxes to Romania, Moldova, The Ukraine and Bulgaria. I know that that many of you, whilst enjoying filling a box for a family/child, last year also enjoyed the opportunity of doing one specifically for an elderly person (as their needs are often rather overlooked). The other BIG plus with this scheme is that you just wrap up your box like a present once it is ready, rather than having the fiddle of covering a box and a lid separately with wrapping paper as in the past. We have already had a number of enquiries from people wanting boxes and leaflets for this year and have also already been given some lovely knitted items in anticipation.
Christine and I have been busy too over the last few months acquiring a stock of suitable shoeboxes and getting all of the necessary leaflets. To take part you will need an empty shoebox (or boxes) - ours or yours, some gifts and an instruction leaflet for each box that you intend to fill. The leaflets are very clear and helpful, so do read one through before you start. By the time this article appears boxes and leaflets will be available in each church. (Or ring Christine and Arthur Sibun on 01462-459145 if you need any help). Completed boxes should be returned to church for onward transportation. Further details and dates for deadlines etc. will be published in next month’s PAX.
Please do help us if you possibly can. Thank you.
WEDNESDAY WORSHIP SERVICE AT ST. IPPOLYTS
Our midweek Holy Communion service at St. Ippolyts has seen a significant change in attendance over the last few months for various reasons and is unsustainable in its present format. Rather than cancel it altogether, we have decided to make some changes. It will now be called Wednesday Worship as it will be either a Holy Communion service or a service of Morning Prayer depending on those attending and whether there is a priest available to celebrate Holy Communion. The time will also change from 11.00am. as it is at the present, to a new time of 10.00am.
There will be no service during the winter months, from 1stNovember until 1stMarch. The changes will come into effect from 1stNovember 2018.
In the meantime, the service will remain at 11.00am. but please do check your weekly pew sheet before attending, as the service will be cancelled if the regular attendees are unable to come. There will be NO services on 29thAugust and
5thand 12thSeptember due to holidays.
COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS
I hope you have all had a wonderful summer. We have been blessed with some lovely weather and I have really tried not to moan that I was too hot, having spent the last few months whinging about the cold and rain!! I also felt blessed when the hot weather broke and we got some refreshing rain but after a couple of days, I was back to moaning about the rain and praying for sun!! I guess that’s just how it is in England but it did provoke some thoughts about what we think of as blessings and how quickly we move on from our thankfulness and want even more.
I remember my Grandma telling me that I should ‘count my blessings’ whenever I was moany and grumpy and I think there is a lot of wisdom in her words. As a society, we are quick to moan and complain but how often do we sit back and actually think about the many positives in our lives? Perhaps if we resolved to counter every complaint with a positive then we would realise just how blessed we really are. I have decided to ‘practise what I preach’, so to speak, and now whenever I find myself moaning, I make myself remember something that I feel I’ve been blessed with - it’s quite a sobering experiment.
One of the things that I have been hugely blessed with over the summer has been the experience of overcoming a fear of mine and that blessing has gone far beyond my expectations.
So what exactly is a blessing?
A blessing is a prayer asking for God’s favour and protection and also the receiving of God’s favour and protection. We gather in church every Sunday to worship God and to ask for His blessing on ourselves, our communities and each other and we also ask God to bless the work that we do in His name. Sometimes priests are also asked to bless houses or ships, or in my particular case this August, horses!
But a blessing is a funny thing......because when we ask God to bless something or someone and trust in His promise to hear us when we ask something of Him, we often find that the blessing reverberates and rebounds and goes far further than we ever imagined.
As you may have read in the last edition of PAX, Sunday 12thAugust saw my third Horse Blessing Service in the two years since I have been here.......the first one being just two weeks after I arrived in this parish.
Having always been fearful of horses, the blessing services were a challenge but I discovered last year that horses were less scary than I had first thought and I foolishly declared that I would attempt to take the service on horseback this year!
Never one to back down from a challenge, I went along to the stables where I was patiently and gently coaxed onto the back of a beautiful cob called Ringo. I was terrified! For several weeks, I went along to the stables and each time I hoped that my fear would ease - it didn’t. I knew that Ringo could tell how scared I was, I think it was the quivering knees that gave me away, but this wonderful horse was so placid and calm that I began to learn to trust him.
Each time I got on his back I would tell him how scared I was and ask him to please be nice! I could sense the power in his muscles and I was under no illusion that I had any control over him whatsoever. If Ringo had decided to rid himself of this quivering vicar then there was nothing I could have done to stop him! It was a very humbling experience to be gifted the generous compliance and tenderness of such a powerful beast.
Anyway, the long and the short of it was that I did indeed manage to learn enough to take the Horse Blessing Service on horseback. The turnout was magnificent, with 60 people and 22 horses in attendance and over £200 raised for ‘Riding for the Disabled’. Each horse was blessed - and given a carrot of course - but the reality was that I received the biggest blessing. You see, I had simply continued with the Horse Blessing Service because it was a tradition and important to the community here but, in doing so, that blessing has rebounded and gone further than I ever imagined it could.
I, for one, have been blessed by the kindness and generosity of all the people at the stables and the many others who have encouraged me to conquer my fears, but I also know that many other people have felt blessed to be part of this whole experience. From the conversations that were had at the stables, to the people who were glad of the chance to share their passion for horses with those they met at the service. There was an acknowledgement that we can all learn something when we are prepared to step into another person’s comfort zone and out of our own and that was a blessing to everyone - not just the horses - and has led to discussions on what else we can do together.
I am still a little scared of horses but also rather sad that this experience has ended. I have certainly learned that God moves in mysterious ways and that if we just trust in Him and work together to offer ourselves to be a blessing to others, God will take that blessing and make it rebound and reverberate in ways that we can barely imagine. Thanks be to God.
With love - Ginni
Whilst Revd Ginni is on holiday we welcome Revd Don Dowling and Doug Richardson to St Ippolyts who will be taking the 08:00 and 09:15 services
Revd Ginni is on holiday until 14th September and during this period Wednesday Holy Communion is cancelled. Thank you for your understanding
Over 60 people and 22 horses attended our annual horse blessing service on 12th August. Our intrepid vicar, Ginni, conquered all her fears and conducted the service on horse back. What a magnificent sight to behold, Ginni and her trusty steed in front of 21 other horses gathered outside our church.
A big thank you to everyone that came and supported us and our heart felt thanks to Courtlands Riding stables who kindly gave Ginni riding lessons so that she could conduct this special service on horse back.
A collections was taken for our local "Riding for the Disabled" charity and a magnificent £217.70 was raised.
Well done Ginni you were brilliant.
TAKE A LOOK AT OUR GALLERY WHERE THERE ARE LOTS MORE PHOTOS!!
Sorry but Holy Communion 11:00 Wednesday 15th August 2018 is CANCELLED
Holy Communion Wednesday 8th August at 11:00 - CANCELLED
According to tradition, whatever the weather is like on St Swithin's Day – whether rainy or sunny – it will continue for the next 40 days and 40 nights.
St Swithin (or St Swithun) was an Anglo-Saxon bishop at WinchesterCathedral who died in 862. At that time Winchester was the capital of the kingdom of Wessex.
He is believed to have been a trusted counsellor of Egbert, King of the West Saxons, and educated his son Ethelwulf who appointed him bishop.
Very little is known about his life and there's hardly any mention of him in documents from the time that he lived. However he was famed for his charity and church building and was made patron saint of Winchester Cathedral about 100 years after his death.
He supposedly performed just one miracle during his lifetime - making an old lady's eggs whole again after workmen smashed them while building a church.
Swithin is derived from the Old English word for "strong" and St Swithin's symbols are raindrops and apples.
Where did the legend originate?
As he lay on his deathbed St Swithin asked to be buried outside the Old Minster in Winchester, in a lowly grave where his body would be trodden and rained on.
However more than a century later, on July 15 971, Winchestermonks moved his remains to an elaborate shrine inside the cathedral where pilgrims flocked, believing his bones to have miraculous healing properties.
But legend has it that St Swithin wasn't happy about his body being moved. On the day of the removal, ferocious and violent rain storms arrived lasting 40 days and nights which apparently represented his displeasure.
This story soon became folklore and now British people keep an eye on the weather on July 15. The superstition is expressed in the well-known rhyme.
St Swithin’s Day, if it does rain
Full forty days, it will remain
St Swithin’s Day, if it be fair
For forty days, t’will rain no more
Nothing remains of St Swithin's shrine which was destroyed during King Henry VIII's Reformation, but there's a memorial to him at Winchester Cathedral.
Other western European countries observe a similar day, dedicated to different saints.
In France, people keep watch for rain on July 19 (St Gervais' Day) and Germany's Seven Sleepers day (July 7) refers to the weather patterns over the next seven weeks.
Thanks to the Daily Telegraph