Society talks much about living in tolerance, but love
It feels wrong to write about celebration when Libya is in a state of civil war and Japan continues to experience such devastation and tragedy. The pictures that reach our TV screens are often ones of violence, destruction and chaos.
But occasionally, amidst the confusion of events, we see a couple reunited, a mother squeezing her rescued child, or a relative mourning the loss of a loved one. They all remind us that when nature forces us to taste some of the more bitter fruits of progress, we cling again to the simple and strengthening gift of love.
As Leslie Newbigin, the scholar and missionary, once said: ‘Tolerance requires no visible community to express it, but love does. The deeper and stronger the love, the more binding will be the mutual obligations to which it will lead’.
is a far greater call. Where tolerance looks on, love reaches out in service and sacrifice.
As we prepare to celebrate the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, we are not only celebrating the pomp and ceremony and joy of the occasion, we are celebrating the love that they have between them and the love that will give them strength for the future.
remember Christ in the wilderness without food, water and company, tested and tried but never separated from the strengthening love of his heavenly Father.
The same strengthening love enabled St Paul to write in prison:
‘I have learned to be content with whatever I have. I know what it is to have little and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances, I have learned the secret of being well fed and going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. I can do all things through the One who strengthens me’.
It is a celebration of the same love that we all enjoy, and perhaps easily take for granted, with those closest to us.
The church is soon to emerge from Lent, the time when we
Passiontide and Easter at St Mary’s
Sunday 17 April Palm Sunday 10.00 am Procession followed by Passion Reading
Monday 18 April to Wednesday 20 April 9.30 pm Meditation & Compline
Thursday 21 April Maundy Thursday 7.00 pm All-age Service with Communion 9.30 pm Vigil and Stripping of the Sanctuary.
Friday 22 April Good Friday 10.00 am All Age Celebration with Hot Cross Buns 2.00 pm Good Friday Service An hour at the cross
Saturday 23 April 4.30 pm Lighting the Easter Fire - Churches Together, Village Green
Sunday 24 April Easter Day 8.00 am Holy Communion 9.30 am Holy Communion 11.00 am All Age Celebration followed by short Holy Communion and Easter Egg Hunt
6.30 pm Evensong
We celebrate the fact that Prince William and Kate Middleton are to be married and at no better time than at Easter, the symbol of new life, new beginnings, and fresh hope. I hope that like St Paul they will learn the secret of contentment in all things and pray that they will experience the strengthening love that knows no bounds.
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