Ministry Letter

Rob writes... (November 2021)Rob Marsh

Where has this year gone? It seems to have disappeared at a great speed. But for many, due to the pandemic, there is much to remember.
“Lest we forget”
November is the month of remembering.
November 1st is All Saints’ Day and November 2nd, All Souls’ Day, and traditionally each year we take time around these dates to gather together and to remember those we hold dear and who have died. In St. Bart’s, we held our annual service on Sunday October 24th, with invites going out to over sixty families who have lost loved ones recently. In St. Martin’s, we traditionally hold a similar service in the New Year.

On November 11th, some of us will gather at 11am, along with children from the local schools in a short service of remembrance. To stand and pause at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month is very special. For myself, having visited the battle fields in France and Belgium, seen the many gravestones in the cemeteries and stood at the war memorial in Ypres whilst they held a service of remembrance, it means a lot to me. Having had family who served in the Falklands and Iraq, the conflict in Egypt and both the first and second world wars, I do feel that it is good that the children want to be involved and keep an awareness of what the day means.
On November 14th both churches will gather at the village war memorials to remember those who gave their lives in the service of their country. We remember not just those who died during the first and second world wars, but also those who have died in conflicts since then.

In the New Testament, the one central remembrance is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The apostle Paul exhorts us to remember what Jesus said on the night of His betrayal and arrest as He shared a final meal with His disciples.
"Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me," Christ said. "This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me" (1 Corinthians 11:24-25).
For two thousand years, the Christian church has remembered the death of Jesus by celebrating the Lord's Supper, Communion, on a regular basis. I never tire of hearing these words and this reminder in our services.

As we remember in this month, let us also never forget to look forward, forward to a time, when we will be attempting to “do” Christmas as normal as possible. A time to get together as a family, a time for carol concerts, Christingle services and so much more that helps us to remember what the true meaning of Christmas is.

God Bless Rob