Newsletter – 29 March 2020

Benefice of Padstow & Trevone, St Merryn, & St Issey with Little Petherick

During this extraordinary time, with our churches locked and public worship suspended, we thought our congregations might appreciate a emailed letter with the prayers and readings for the Sunday and a short devotional piece, as a way of keeping us together and sharing any thoughts we may have.

Sunday 29th March (Have you set your clocks an hour forward?)

The fifth Sunday of Lent – (Passion Sunday in the Church of England)

Collect

Most merciful God,

who by the death and resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ

delivered and saved the world:

grant that by faith in him who suffered on the cross

we may triumph in the power of his victory;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

Readings

Ezekiel 37. 1-14          The valley of the dry bones

Romans 8. 6-11          “To set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace”

John 11.-45                 The raising of Lazarus

In the first reading the prophet Ezekiel has a vision: he sees a large valley strewn with dry bones; there were very many of them “and they were very dry”

God says to him, “Can these bones live?” Ezekiel replies (appropriately enough!) “God only knows!” But in the vision the bones come to life and are filled with breath. In Hebrew the same word means “breath” and “spirit”.  There is a double meaning here – for Ezekiel and through him, for us.

Ezekiel and many of his fellow Jews were in exile in Babylon following the capture and destruction of Jerusalem and the reduction of the Kingdom of Judea to a minor province of the Babylonian Empire. It seemed to him and to his most of his fellow countrymen that God had deserted them, and they had no more future than a pile of old bones. But the vision proved him and them wrong: the Jews came back from exile and showed that faith in God was not tied to one nation or place and that he could be worshipped anywhere and by anyone.

So in these difficult and sometimes frightening times we need to keep that vision in mind; we can worship God in our homes if we can’t get to church, and the Church will arise stronger and more united after these times are past.   The way in which our communities  working together to support each other is a heartening sign, and we, as a congregation, are playing our part in that, as we should, for Jesus said “I came not to be served, but to serve”, and that is our calling as well.

The Post Communion prayer puts it very well:

Lord Jesus Christ,

you have taught us

that what we do for the least of our brothers and sisters

we do also for you:

give us the will to be the servant of others

as you were the servant of all,

and gave up your life and died for us,

but are alive and reign, now and for ever.

Intercessions

SUNDAY 29th March  5TH SUNDAY OF LENT (Passiontide begins) – SATURDAY 4TH APRIL

Churches Together Prayer List:  Our NHS workers, all emergency services keyworkers,

all countrywide volunteers.

Our whole community & Benefice

ANGLICAN COMMUNION: The Anglican Communion and Archbishop Justin Welby.

DIOCESE OF TRURO: Bishop Philip, Archdeacons Paul and Audrey, Dean Roger Bush and all members of the senior staff team.  Praying for the new Bishop designate of St Germans Revd Hugh Nelson.

DEANERY OF PYDAR: Clergy and people.  Rural Dean Chris McQuillen-Wright.

PARISH: Our United Benefice.  Give thanks for the ministries of our retired Clergy and our Lay Worship leaders in all our parishes. We give thanks for the ministry of our Curate Revd Fiona in this Parish and Benefice.  Pray for our Benefice now in Transition

OUR COUNTRY The Royal Family. All involved in the “Brexit” negotiations.

THE WORLD 

We pray for the peace of the world. An end to violence, bloodshed and terrorism.  Displaced peoples in our world.  All affected by natural disasters.  Give thanks for the work of all relief Agencies and emergency services.  All those affected worldwide by the Corona Virus.

FOR THE SICK: – For all who are undergoing tests; those who are waiting, for or who have

recently under-gone surgery; those anxious for loved ones.