We extend a very warm welcome to Rev’d Malcolm Hickox, the new minister at Fulwood Methodist Church. We pray God’s Blessing on his ministry and on his wife Christine and their family and hope they will soon feel at very much at home in Fulwood.
PRESTON GUILD 2012
At the time of writing, the main events of the Guild are still some days away but by publication day we will be in the midst of them.
On Sunday 2nd September we are delighted that Rev’d Elizabeth Caswell (representing the Moderator of General Assembly) is taking our morning service prior to attending the afternoon Guild Ecumenical Service in the marquee on Avenham Park. During the afternoon service she and Rev’d Richard Church (Moderator of NW Synod) will be taking part and the usual suspects will be joining the choir. If you haven’t already got tickets and still have time to get to the Park by 2:30, you may be able to get a spare seat. If you haven’t quite got time for that, watch out for the BBC or ITV news later in the day as it will be featured then and there will also be a DVD of the service on sale in a few weeks.
Monday 3rd will see the culmination of over 12 months planning and preparation for the Churches procession. Several of our congregation have worked with members of St Clare’s Roman Catholic Church making banners and other props to decorate our float and open-top bus depicting “I am the Bread of Life”. Although there is a roof on the float, for the benefit of those on the top deck of the bus, walking or spectating, keep praying for dry weather in the afternoon (and for the other events during the week).
Our thanks go to all those who have helped to make the banners and props and also to those who have contributed to the cost of the materials for the float.
Margery, Jean, Kerry & Duncan.
Pam Leaver, Ron Henery’s eldest daughter, who many will know from her regular visits to church with her father, has contributed the following article to The Park School Old Girls’ Association Preston Guild – Reminiscences of Previous Guilds. Many of you may find it interesting:
“My sister Kathryn is returning for the Guild week from Tasmania where she has settled with her husband on a small holding and where she is a consultant to the Autistic service. I now live in Manchester and have retired from being a GP for the last 5 years. We will be attending the Guild Court as members of the Guild Merchant. Our grandfather, James Henery was Mayor of Preston in 1956 and was granted the gift of membership of the Guild Merchant at this time. This honour is handed down the male line but in the 1992 Guild the honour was extended to the female line also. Our father, Ron Henery, who is now at the time of writing, 92 years old and still lives independently in his bungalow in Ribbleton, expects to attend the Guild Court and to parade in the procession although he has told me that he doesn’t think he will be walking. He hopes he might get an official car!!!!
My memory of the 1972 Guild was the fly by of Concorde over Avenham Park. My father, as a tool maker and later in the office, worked on Concorde for British Aerospace and so this event was especially memorable.”
Pam Leaver ( nee Henery)
The right to hold a Guild Merchant was conferred by King Henry II upon the Burgesses of Preston in a charter of 1179; the associated Preston Guild is a civic celebration held every 20 years and 2012 is another Guild year. It is the only Guild still celebrated in the UK and as such is unique and this is the first since the granting of city status to Preston in 2002.
MEMORIES OF PRESTON GUILDS
I recently travelled to Blackpool with Kath Cross from Westbury Gardens URC, Blackburn. We had both been appointed Companions to help Marton United Reformed Church in producing their Pastorate Review. On the journey we got chatting about Preston Guild and in particular how the Church Processions I have taken part in had changed. She has since asked me to write a piece for her church Magazine. Perhaps you will find it of interest
My recollections of my first Preston Guild in 1952 are a bit hazy. I had just started at the Grammar School. Along with girls from the Park School we took part in the Schools Pageant on Avenham Park. My part was a peasant, dressed in a simple tunic and no shoes playing games involving a lance and a padded shield at the end of a horizontal pole . You had to strike the shield and then run or the other end swung round and hit you on the back of the head. The senior boys and girls were finely dressed as lords and ladies celebrating previous Preston Guilds.
In 1952 there were three separate Church Processions – Anglican, Roman Catholic and Free Churches – morning and afternoon on one day and the afternoon on another. In the Free Church procession St Margaret’s Presbyterian Church portrayed the life of St Margaret and I remember walking as a member of the Boys Brigade.
The Church Processions in 1972 were again three in number. In 1968 our Presbyterian Church had united with Garstang Road Congregation Church (four years before the formation of the URC) so our large banner had had a new title added. I remember helping to carry it and at times struggling with cross winds on Fishergate. The theme for the Free Church procession was “Who is my neighbour?” Lots of the Sunday School children, including my own two, all suitably dressed-up for the occasion, rode on our float and probably contravened most of today’s health and safety regulations!
By 1992, the Churches Together in Fulwood and Broughton had been formed and there were only two Church Processions. Each contained churches of all denominations, divided only on a geographical basis. Most churches walked separately with their own banner, although the Fulwood & Broughton churches were linked by the theme “Forward Together in Faith” starting as separate groups wearing different colours and gradually mingling behind a specially made joint banner. My unforgettable memory of the Ecumenical Service in Avenham Park was joining together with over 7000 people, accompanied by Graham Kendrick, singing “Shine Jesus Shine” with the rain coming down like stair-rods – an occasion I recall every time we sing this frequently-chosen hymn.
For the 2012 Guild, there is just one church procession. Churches Together in Fulwood & Broughton have chosen to present the “I am“ sayings of Jesus and to do this with pairs of churches working together on individual sayings. For nearly two years we have been planning with our neighbours St Clare’s Roman Catholic Church. Our float will present “I am the Bread of Life” – starting with sheaves of corn from the field, showing bread making, bread being eaten as our daily food and as our spiritual food on the altar and communion table of our two traditions.
It has been a delight to plan and work together with friends from another denomination. We have had many meetings and several workshop sessions making equipment for the float and producing “I am the Bread of Life” banners to decorate the float and to surround the umbrellas (hopefully sunshades!) that those travelling on our open-topped bus will carry. Both will proclaim that Jesus Christ is the Bread of Life.
Our hope is that, as a legacy of Preston Guild 2012, the friendships formed will continue to grow and that there will be other opportunities for pairs or groups of churches to find other projects where we can work together for the benefit of the people of our city.
Smiling is infectious, you catch it like the flu;
When someone smiled at me today, I started smiling too.
I passed around the corner, and someone saw my grin;
When he smiled I realized, I’d passed it on to him.
I thought about that smile, then I realized its worth;
A single smile just like mine, could travel round the earth.
So, if you feel a smile begin, don’t leave it undetected;
Let’s start an epidemic quick, and get the world infected!
Thanks to Beaconsfield URC
Lectionary Readings September & October 2012
2nd Songs of Songs 2: 8 – 13; Psalm 45: 1 – 2, 6 – 9 or Deuteronomy 4: 1 – 2, 6 – 9; Psalm 15; James 1: 17 – 27; St Mark 7: 1 – 8, 14 – 15, 21 – 23
9th Proverbs 22: 1 – 2, 8 – 9, 22 – 23; Psalm 125 or Isaiah 35: 4 – 7a; Psalm 146; James 2: 1 – 10, (11 – 13), 14 – 17; St Mark 7: 24 – 37
16th Proverbs 1: 20 – 33; Psalm 19 or Isaiah 50: 4 – 9a; Psalm 116: 1 – 9; James 3: 1 – 12; St Mark 8: 27 – 38
23rd Proverbs 31: 10 – 31; Psalm 1 or Jeremiah 11: 18 – 20; Psalm 54; James 3: 13 – 4: 3, 7 – 8a; St Mark 9: 30 – 37
30th Esther 7: 1 – 6, 9 – 10, 9: 20 – 22; Psalm 124 or Numbers 11: 4 – 6, 10 – 16, 24 – 29; Psalm 19: 7 – 14; James 5: 13 – 20; St Mark 9: 38 – 50
7th Job 1: 1; 2: 1 – 10; Psalm 26 or Genesis 2: 18 – 24; Psalm 8; Hebrews 1: 1 – 4; 2: 5 – 12; St Mark 10: 2 – 16
14th Job 23: 1 – 9, 16 – 17; Psalm 22: 1 – 15 or Amos 5: 6 – 7, 10 – 15; Psalm 90: 12 – 17; Hebrews 4: 12 – 16; St Mark 10: 17 – 31
21st Job 38: 1 – 7, (34 – 41); Psalm 104: 1 – 9, 24, 35c or Isaiah 53: 4 – 12; Psalm 91: 9 – 16; Hebrews 5: 1 – 10; St Mark 10: 35 – 45
28th Job 42: 1 – 6, 10 – 17; Psalm 34: 1 – 8, (19 – 22) or Jeremiah 31: 7 – 9; Psalm 126; Hebrews 7: 23 – 28; St Mark 10: 46 – 52
1st All Saints Day Isaiah 25: 6 – 9; Psalm 24; Revelation 7: 9 -17; St John 11: 32 – 44
4th Ruth 1: 1 – 18; Psalm 146 or Deuteronomy 6: 1 – 9; Psalm 119: 1 – 8; Hebrews 9: 11 – 14; St Mark 12: 28 – 34
‘But where shall wisdom be found?
And where is the place of understanding?
…… And he said to humankind,
“Truly, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom;
and to depart from evil is understanding.”
(NRSV Job 28: 12,28)
Quiz for Christian Aid
We are holding a Quiz in aid of Christian Aid on Friday 5th October starting promptly at 7:30pm. Teams of 4 have been invited from other churches and we would like at least one team from our church. Admission by donation to Christian Aid. There will also be a Fair Trade stall.
THE WINDERMERE CENTRE
Your roving Reporter has just come back from an event at the Windermere Centre for Church contacts. The programme up to next June has now been published and it contains more courses than any previous years. Obviously some of them are Biblical or spiritual based but if you find these a bit daunting there are plenty of leisure courses such as card-making, painting, digital photography or walking around the Lake District. If you want to know more about the courses, have a look at the programme on the notice board or ask Margery for a leaflet. Information can also be found on the website at http://windermere.urc.org.uk.
The Windermere Centre was set up by the URC just over 25 years ago as a training & resource centre but it isn’t just for URC members – the courses are open to anyone, whether or not they are a member of a church. It offers good food (special diets catered for), en-suite rooms including two with facilities for people with disabilities, no single supplements and a warm welcome. When space allows, rooms are available to book for B&B via www.booking.com.
Why not try it out – it’s only an hour away by car.
COME & SING 30 JUL – 2 AUG 2012
After a year’s absence, the Come & Sing Course was back in full voice under the capable leadership of Martyn Smith, the organist at Burnley URC. About two dozen singers from numerous churches thoroughly enjoyed three full days singing a wide variety of mostly new (to us) hymns and songs. We were blessed with a marvellous accompanist, John Chantery from Ascot, who was a personal friend of Andrew Wood, the Head of Operational Services at Windermere
THE SMALLER BEATITUTES
Blessed are those who can laugh at themselves: they will have no end of fun.
Blessed are those who can tell a mountain from a molehill: they will be saved a lot of bother.
Blessed are those who know how to relax without looking for excuses: they are on the way to becoming wise.
Blessed are those who know when to be quiet and listen: they will learn a lot of new things.
Blessed are those who are sane enough not to take themselves too seriously: they will be valued by those about them.
Happy are you if you can take small things seriously and face serious things calmly: you will go far in life.
Happy are you if you can appreciate a smile and forget a frown: you will walk on the sunny side of the street.
Happy are you if you can be kind in understanding the attitudes of others: you may be taken for a fool, but this is the price of charity.
Happy are you if you know when to hold your tongue and smile: the Gospel has begun to seep into your heart.
Blessed are they who think before acting and pray before thinking: they will avoid may blunders.
Blessed are those you recognise the Lord in all whom they meet: the light of truth shines in their lives. They have found true wisdom.
On Thursday, 13th September, our speaker will be Helen McKinnell, who will speak about her visit to Sierre Leone and her time spent working in a hospital.This will complement the talk that John Spencer gave some time ago on the work of the Methodist Church in Sierre Leone.
Our October meeting on Thursday 11th will be a Hot Pot Supper and simple Table Top Games evening.
CHURCHES TOGETHER IN FULWOOD & BROUGHTON
Annual Pilgrimage. This year, a special Guild Pilgrimage (mostly by coach) to Preston Churches including St Walburge’s, Lune Street Methodist, St George’s Lune Street, St Wilfrids and St John’s Broughton. We will attend Evensong at St John’s followed by an evening meal at “Dog & Partridge” Chipping. Cost £22.00 (including coach and meal)
AN OLD GAELIC BLESSING
May the road rise up to meet you,
may the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
the rains fall soft upon your fields,
and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of his hand.
BEWARE THE SPELLCHECKER….
Eye have a spelling chequer
It came with my pea sea
It plainly marques four my review
Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.
Eye strike a quay and type a word
And weight four it two say
Weather eye am wrong or write
It shows me straight aweigh.
As soon as a mist ache is maid
It nose bee fore two long
And I can put the error rite
Its rare lea ever wrong.
Eye have run this poem threw it
I am shore your pleased two no
My spellings perfect awl the weight
My chequer tolled me sew.
Thanks to Park URC
TEN WISE SAYINGS
- Prayer is not a “spare wheel” that you pull out when in trouble: it is a “steering wheel” that directs us in the right path throughout life.
- Do you know why a car’s windshield is so large and the rear view mirror is so small? Because our past is not as important as our future. So, look ahead and move on.
- Friendship is like a book – it takes a few seconds to burn, but it takes years to write.
- All things in life are temporary. If going well – enjoy it – they will not last forever. If going wrong, don’t worry, they won’t last forever either.
- Old friends are like Gold! New friends are Diamonds! If you get a Diamond, don’t forget the Gold. Because to hold a Diamond, you always need a base of Gold.
- Often when we lose hope and think this is the end, God smiles from above and says, “Relax, it’s just a bend, not the end!”
- When God solves your problems, you have faith in His abilities; when God doesn’t solve your problems He has faith in your abilities.
- A blind person asked St. Anthony: “Can there be anything worse than losing eye sight?” He replied: “Yes, losing your vision.”
- When you pray for others, God listens to you and blesses them; and sometimes, when you are safe and happy, remember that someone has prayed for you.
- Worrying does not take away tomorrow’s troubles: it takes away today’s peace.
(I think this article came from one of Rev’d David Spence’s churches)
THE POWER OF GOD’S LOVE
A bridge needed to be built across a large, busy river so divers were sent to explore the river bed. The divers discovered a wreck of a large old sailing ship buried in the deep mud just where one of the bridge’s main piers needed to be built. They used ropes and powerful tugs, but no matter what they did, the wreck would not budge.
Then an engineer had an idea: the river rises and falls with the tide twice a day so why not use the power of the whole ocean to lift the wreck? At low tide ropes were fastened to lots of barges and then they waited. As the barges rose on the ingoing tide so the ropes tightened and pulled. And slowly, the wreck was eased out of the mud. Nothing could resist the power of the rising water.
And so it is with the love of God. Nothing can resist its power or stand against it. When we would give up and say ‘It is impossible’, God’s love is bigger than any ocean and He changes what we believe is unchangeable.
A REFLECTION FOR OUR TIMES
Money can buy medicine, but it cannot buy health,
It can buy a house but not a home,
It can buy companionship but not friendship,
It can buy entertainment but not happiness,
It can buy food but not appetite,
It can buy a bed but not sleep,
It can buy a cross but not a Saviour,
It can buy a good life but not eternal life.
Thanks to Altrincham URC