The letter from the Minister is on the "From the Manse" page
LET GOD BE APOSTROPHIC TO YOU
Rarely does English punctuation appear as a topic on the news. A few weeks ago Radio 4 featured the story of a man who, at the dead of night, ventured out to correct punctuation on shop signs and in other public places. Where apostrophes were wrongly placed he covered them and where omitted he inserted them. When asked if he might have been prosecuted for criminal damage, he denied causing any. He even brought his own ladders so as not to mark walls. By carefully matching size and colour and using harmless plastic and adhesive, many did not notice the changes he made. Apparently the law didn’t intervene and his eccentric behaviour was tolerated.
Language separates humankind from the rest of the animal creation. We take this wonderful faculty for granted. Its use gives us great opportunities for good or ill. It has been said of the novelist, George Eliot, that the shape and texture of her writing conveyed more than could be revealed in any other way. There is great beauty in language which we should treasure. When, for easy speaking, we say, for example, ‘St John’s’, we refer to a single person, ‘St John, his Church.’ The apostrophe gently reminds us of what is missing. The word itself comes from a foreign language where apostrepho means reject or turn away.
There is a parable here for us all. As the apostrophe indicates what is missing in our sentences, God will show us what is missing in our lives. If we would be ‘entire and whole and perfect’ (MHB 900).we must pray in Wesley’s thought, ‘Lord, I am blind; be my sight. Lord, I am weak; be my might.’
Look up Ephesians 1 vv 17 & 18
SWANTON ABBOTT WESLEYAN REFORM UNION CHAPEL
On May 20th Swanton Abbott Chapel played host to the East Anglia District Wesley Historical Society.
Wesleyan Reformers date their origin back to 1849, when expulsions from Wesleyan Methodism followed a long period of agitation for reform. Since then they have maintained their witness as a separate body among the Free Churches/
Chair of the District Rev. Julian Pursehouse led the opening devotions of the meeting with Prayer and a reading from Acts 11: 1- 18.
Following a historical overview of Wesleyan Reform from Norma Virgoe, Pastor Peter Mitchell gave a very interesting talk on the history of the Chapel. It was opened in 1867 next door to a Primitive Methodist Chapel, and there was also a Swedish Chapel in the village. By 1936 the only surviving Chapel was the Wesleyan one.
In 1994 Peter was invited to join the list of visiting preachers and became Pastor in 2012.
In 2011 the powers that be decided that the Chapel was no longer viable. Thanks to Peter’s determination, supported by a small but enthusiastic congregation it has remained open. A generous grant was given from the Union and this, added to the Chapel’s own reserves funded a £58,000 renovation. The restored Chapel now has disabled access and toilets, plus a new kitchen and lounge area.
We were given a very warm welcome and served a delicious tea by the loyal folk at this beautiful little Chapel and I would urge anyone visiting the North Walsham area to pay them a visit.
Church leaders champion the dragons' lair
Church leaders joined with politicians, conservationists and families to mark the opening of A Rocha UK’s Foxearth Meadows – Britain’s only nature reserve managed primarily for dragonflies.
More than 300 people attended the event on 13th May. It started with more than 150 local residents cutting a 100-metre-long ‘eco-ribbon’ to launch what has been described as a ‘perfect’ place for nature. They all took part in a packed one-day programme.
‘What a fantastic way to do a ribbon-cutting ceremony,’ said Braintree parliamentary candidate James Cleverly. ‘Never before have I seen community engage like this in the opening of a site for wildlife.’ Foxearth Meadows Nature Reserve is on the Essex-Suffolk border.
Other guests included – North Hinckford Team Vicar Rev Margaret King, Sudbury Methodist minister Rev John Boardman (pictured above), Sudbury Deputy Town Mayor Sue Ayres and Braintree District Council’s Deputy Leader Wendy Schmitt. It was Wendy who described the 11-acre site as ‘perfect’ after a previous visit there.
Extract from the A Rocha News for June
You and your food
At harvest festivals, Christians often remember with thanks those who labour to produce the food on which we depend. We often don’t go on to consider the way the food we consume impacts on the lives of humans, animals, and the earth. If Christians worship the good creator of a good creation and look forward to the whole creation being released from its bondage (Romans 8.21), we should consider how what we eat affects God’s creation.
Many churches recognise that those who work to produce food often get a bad deal and choose to serve fair-trade tea, coffee, sugar, and other goods in response. This can be a problem close to home as well. UK farmers have protested at being pressured by supermarkets to accept prices that don’t make their work viable. Globally,70 per cent of agricultural land is used to raise animals, and they are fed one-third of all the cereals we grow. Reducing meat, dairy and egg consumption would make a significant contribution to human food and water security, as well as benefitting human health. Buying direct from farmers helps make local food production viable.
Farming is becoming more intensive. Most chickens raised for meat live only 35 days in vast warehouses without access to daylight. Most pigs spend their lives indoors, and increasing numbers of dairy cattle are not given access to grass. Old Testament law required farmers to show consideration for their cattle (eg Exodus 20.8–11, 22.30; Deuteronomy 25.4), yet most farm animals are now not able to express behaviours that are natural to them. Choosing animal products from higher welfare systems is an important recognition of their status as fellow creatures of God.
The fertiliser spill-off from intensive arable farming changes the nutrients in rivers, causing significant environmental damage. Greenhouse gas emissions from transporting food and from the growing numbers of animals raised for meat make a substantial contribution to climate change. Choosing locally produced food and reducing meat and dairy consumption lowers the environmental impact of our food choices.
Taken from A Rocha News for June
SHCT Bike Ride on 9th September
A date for your diary ! The Bike Ride for the Suffolk Historic Churches Trust will be held on Saturday 9th September this year. Local organisers will be Brian and Clare Mortimer. We would be grateful for your help and support for this valuable cause."
MESSY CHURCH – DANIEL IN THE LION’S DEN
Messy Church. A title that brings varied pictures and expectations to the mind. Aimed for the young, when you come to Messy Church you will find adults enjoying and taking part as much as the children. Each session has a theme. This time the theme was Daniel in the Lions’ Den. All crafts, games and activities are themed to this subject.
Crafts and games were set up for the children to enjoy. One of the favourite tables is the icing and creating of a lion's face on a fairy cake Then perhaps to the Lion coconut shy with beanbags. How many can you knock down? The lions are decorated tins hanging from a line.. Your score is recorded. A peaceful time sitting creating prayer cards and hands are on another table. Then perhaps onto a table where lion masks are being created. Elsewhere a challenge is being set to catch the lions and put them in the den. Various soft toy "lions" have to be hooked and placed in the den. Again your score is recorded. For those who enjoy art there are pictures to colour and a large wall frieze of Daniel and the lions being made. A lion's clay head plaque can test the pottery skills. All the activities have cards on show explaining the connection with Daniel's story. An hour of these activities leads to a fifteen minute service in the Church with prayer, songs, slides and a mini drama acted out by the children on the theme. Then the children and adults along with helpers sit down to a simple meal. At the end of the meal prizes are given for the various scored activities.
A lively and inspiring time had by all and the various creations taken home to ponder and enjoy.
Outreach by Community Worker
We continue to be more than happy with the work Emma Smy is doing for us at St John’s.
Tea and Tots continues to thrive. TGIF members are still having after school fun and a few still come to Open house early Friday afternoons but unfortunately we have had to call time on “Who let the Dads out”.
Emma has always been keen to have a Dementia Friendly Session and last Saturday to support their Cupcake Day and raise money for the Alzheimer's Association we held our launch morning.
We had generous support in the making of cup cakes; the display looked amazing. We had a variety of games around the room and plenty of coffee tea and squash. It would have been good to have had more people with us but we managed to raise about £85 for the Association.
Our NEW Saturday morning club will be known as Footprints , an apt title to reflect the need to be alongside members every step of the way. The aim is to have activities for all but hoping it will allow carers to have a chance to sit, enjoy a drink and chat to others. It will be held between 10am – 12 noon.
We also plan to run a holiday club for children from 10.00-12.00 every day during the week beginning August 21st.
As always we could do with more volunteer helpers at all our sessions as the lack of helpers sometimes leads to Emma having to restrict some of the activities she has planned. She is never short of ideas but our lack of numbers is restricting the work we could do and putting a strain on those who do come to help. Could you spend two hours once a month to go on our rota? It would be a great help if you could. If you are able to help on any Friday or Saturday please let our Community Worker, Emma Smy, know – just pop a note of the date(s) you are available and a contact telephone number or email address into her pigeon hole or let Beverly Richardson or Gill Phillips know.
It would also be helpful if we could have donations of prizes – preferably without an expiry date – for some of the planned activities, such as bingo. If you cannot help on a Saturday but would like to help this initiative by donating prizes, please give any donations to Beverly or Gill.
The Glemsford Facebook page has been up and running for a month now, and lots of people have viewed the various posts and photos.
If you have a Facebook account please go to our page by searching for Glemsford Methodist Church. Once you have found us if you tick "like" at the top you will receive our regular updates.
Anyone can post on the page so feel free to comment or post relevant information.
Tree and woodland bodies agree principles for Charter for Trees, Woods and People
In November 1217, two years after Magna Carta was sealed by King John, his heir Henry III sealed the Charter of the Forest. The aim of this document was to protect the rights of free men to access and use the Royal Forests. The Charter of the Forest provides a window to a time in history when access to woods was integral to daily life. Being denied access for grazing livestock, collecting firewood and foraging for food was a real concern for the people of the 13th century.
Today, at a time when England may have tipped into deforestation with more trees being cut down than planted for the first time in 40 years, it is essential we act now as a nation to protect the future of trees and woods for people for generations to come.
From community woods across the UK, street trees in our cities, timber in our houses, to many ancient trees and woods with historical and cultural connections, trees and woods play an important part in our lives, but more woods are under threat than ever before.
Whereas the historic Charter of the Forest in 1217 was signed by the King to grant rights to his subjects, the new Tree Charter will draw its strength from people power, with signatures from hundreds of thousands of people from across the UK
The coalition of environmental, social and industry bodies has published what it calls the charter's ten key principles, based on consultation with the public.
The list has been drawn up from more than 50,000 stories submitted by members of the public, including woodland owners via a survey last year by environmental charity Sylva Foundation.
It has been agreed by a coalition of more than 70 cross-sector UK organisations, which are asking the public to sign the Tree Charter which will be launched later this year.
The main themes and aims of the charter will be:
- Nature - thriving habitats for diverse species
- Planting for the future
- Arts & Heritage - celebrating the cultural impacts of trees
- Utility & Livelihoods - a thriving forestry sector that delivers for the UK
- Better Protection for important trees and woods
- Planning - enhancing new developments with trees
- Health & Wellbeing - understanding and using the natural health benefits of trees
- Access to trees for everyone
- Coping with Threats to woods and trees through good management
- Environment - strengthening landscapes with woods and trees.
Sylva Foundation chief executive Gabriel Hemery said: "The Tree Charter is a vehicle for us all to reflect for a moment about what trees mean to us individually, and thanks to the engagement with tens of thousands of people across the UK it will provide a clarion call for society to do better in protecting and enhancing our trees and forests."
Woodland Trust chief executive Beccy Speight said: "Today, our nation’s woods and trees are facing unprecedented pressures from development, pests and diseases and climate change. They risk being neglected, undervalued and forgotten.
"Now is the time to create a new Tree Charter, which recognises the importance of trees in our society, celebrates their enormous contribution to our lives, and acts now so that future generations can benefit from them too."
The final Charter is intended to "provide guidance and inspiration" for policy and practice, while laying out the responsibilities to, and benefits from, woods and trees for Government, businesses, communities and individuals.
It will be officially launched on 6 November 2017, the 800th anniversary of the historic 1217 Charter of the Forest, signed by Henry III and granting commoners access to royal lands.
If you would like to sign this charter, please add your signature to the sheet in the Link and I will send it on to the Tree Charter Team.
Money never stays with me; it would burn if it did. I throw it out of my hands as soon as possible, lest it should find a way into my heart.
On Saturday July 22nd, Jan Turner is masterminding a Greek meal for us as a fundraising event to cover some costs which will be incurred for St John’s Family Fair. The menu will be as follows:-
Flat Bread and Tahini Dip will be on the tables.
Kleftico- Lamb cooked slowly with lemon, garlic and potatoes.
Meat Balls in tomato sauce.
Stuffed vine leaves.
Stuffed peppers- vegetarian option.
Pistachio ice cream
Numbers will be limited to 40, so please book the date now and sign up as soon as the notice goes up in the Link. The cost will be on that notice.
BEAT THE STREET
I really enjoyed the walk I attended on 13th May in Sudbury, organized beautifully by Sudbury churches together. There was coffee on arrival, then two helpers with high-viz jackets to lead us on the walk, then a welcome from each of the churches we visited.
As a result of visiting St Gregory’s, I found out about an organ concert to raise funds for the church organ. The organist was going to be Stephen Cleobury, from King’s College Cambridge. I enjoyed the concert: it was an inspiring event and very well attended. I hope St Gregory’s fund for organ repairs has now swelled its
So, thank you so much for a wonderful FREE Saturday morning.
A highlight for me was the brief and very welcoming visit to the Quaker Meeting House. Later on that day, I went to Gainsborough’s House for a FREE Open Day.
Wow! Sudbury, you are mighty in your cultural impact and very warm in your welcome. Many, many thanks.
Email from someone who took part in the “Beat the Street” walk which started and ended at St John’s
The annual garden party will be held at the home of Paul and Jane Martland, Inglebrook,Borley, CO107AE. - on Wednesday 9th. August.
There will be entertaining games, stalls and tea and cakes. Barclays will match £for£ up to £750. If you require a lift please speak to a steward.
Please start saving brick a brac, books and bottles which we will collect from you or the Church at the beginning of August.
Friends and neighbours are very welcome and we hope for a sunny afternoon!
Jane and Paul Martland
The deadline for the September Herald
is Sunday 20th August
Please email any contribution to either Tricia Campbell - firstname.lastname@example.org or Gill Phillips - gillian.phillips @gmx.co.uk - or leave it in the tray in the Link.
Minister Rev John Boardman 01787 372738
Senior Steward Sue Rampling 01787 377441
Lettings Secretary Andrew Clare 01787 372705
Church Office 01787 373185
Church website: www.stjohns-sudbury.co.uk
Church email address: email@example.com
Thank you Vi, for polishing brasses
Silverware too, and the glasses,
Hoovering carpet along the aisle,
Dusting and sweeping – there’s no denial –
You’ve kept St John’s beautifully clean
A cleaner so careful has ne’er been seen
We’ll not let a week go by
Without being grateful to wonderful Vi!
God bless you, Vi
With all our love - Rev John and everyone at St John’s Methodist Church