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Our upcoming Sunday and weekday services,
together with any ferial, festal or seasonal services are listed below:
Epiphany in the 40 Days of Christmas
The week commencing:
Sunday 20th January 2019 ~ THIRD SUNDAY OF EPIPHANY
Wednesday 23rd January 2019
8.30 am ~ Meonstoke ~ a simple said Morning Prayer service
Thursday 24th January 2019
10 am ~ Droxford ~ Said Holy Communion (CW) ~ The Conversion of Saul
Sunday 27th January ~ FOURTH SUNDAY OF EPIPHANY
Third Sunday after Epiphany
8 am ~ Corhampton ~ Holy Communion (BCP)
10:00 am ~ Meonstoke ~ Informal Family Service
10.30 am ~ Exton ~ Sung Eucharist (CW)
Tuesday 29th January 2019
8.30 am ~ Exton ~ a simple said Morning Prayer
Wednesday 30th January 2019
8.30 am ~ Meonstoke ~ a simple said Morning Prayer service
Thursday 31st January 2019
10 am ~ Droxford ~ Said Holy Communion (CW)
Rest in Peace
It is great sadness that I have to report the death of one of our dear organists, Dr Alan Hibbert, on Friday, 14th December. Alan played the organ in many churches from his boyhood and so the worship of thousands of people over the years has been lifted heavenwards by his huge contribution to church music. Alan and Jackie came to Droxford with their children over 40 years ago and quickly became active members of the community. In his professional life, Alan was an academic and a world authority in his sphere. We shall miss Alan for his cheery smile, his wit, his modesty and for a life guided by firm principles. As we pray for the repose of his soul, we also pray that God will hold the whole of Alan’s family and his many friends and former colleagues in his care.
Alan’s funeral will take place in Droxford Church on Wednesday, 16th January at 11.30 am.
It is with equal sadness that I report that the Rev’d Canon David Henley died on Monday, 10th December at 1.20 pm at home with Liz his first wife after fighting against his cancer with such courage for so long. Anthony Hulbert arrived at David’s home soon afterwards and was able to pray over him with Nicola and Liz.
David had seen all his family including the grand children over the weekend and was deeply thankful to be home and out of a very noisy hospital ward.
David was so grateful for all the cards and messages of goodwill that he received. The support and love of so many and his deep faith sustained him to the last.
David’s funeral service took place in Broad Chalke parish church on Thursday, 20th December. There will a Service of Thanksgiving on 16th February at 2.30 pm in Droxford Church. Please pray for David’s family, not least his grandchildren, and his many friends and former parishioners.
Dear friends, rest in God’s peace.
to all the couples married in the Bridge Benefice Churches in 2018
and to all those engaged to be married in 2019.
GDPR arrived on 25th May
Well Done and Thank You
Thank you to all those who contributed to, helped organise or attended our recent events:
- For all those who attended Alan’s funeral and especially the organist (John Martin), the violinist (Cathy Mathews) and the choir – the music was so uplifting.
- For all those who cleaned, decorated and arranged flowers in our four churches for Christmas
- For the CHRISTMAS TREES and the 2018 Big Christmas Thank You to everyone who helps to support our Communities and Churches! …And not least, Nell in the Corhampton and Meonstoke Post Office and Village Stores for sourcing the trees and to Becky Evans for organising the event and to all those who have decorated trees. For all those who organised, ran or supported the Exton Pre-Christmas Sale on 24th November 2018
- For all the help at the wonderfully lively ‘Messy Church’, especially to Mother Samantha and all the volunteers.
- To all those who supported Benefice Advent Service of Carols and Lessons and for the Mulled Wine and Mince Pies.
- For all the toys brought to the Benefice Toy Service & St Andrew’s patronal festival.
- For the beautiful decoration of the churches for Remembrance and huge participation in the services.
- To Mother Samantha and all those who support the ‘Light Party’ on 3rd November.
- All those who help clear the Churchyard in Droxford on 3rd November
- All those braving the elements on Saturday 13th October for the Meonstoke & Corhampton Churchyard Clear-ups and for walking in witness on the St Wilfrid Trail to East Meon
- For all those who prepared our churches for Harvest so beautifully.
From the Rector
Christmas – still?
The celebration of Christ’s incarnation at Christmas is the first great feast of the Christian year. The wonderful mystery of God’s dwelling among us in the fullness of humanity, as Emmanuel, foretold by the prophets and born of Mary, provides the material for our liturgy.
Christmas is even more than the celebration of Jesus’ birth, and neither of the great Christmas morning readings (Hebrews 1 and John 1) is taken from the infancy narratives. The task of the Christmas liturgy is to recall us, amid all the joyful customs and celebrations of Christmas, to this central truth of the Word made flesh for our salvation.
Christ’s nativity does, of course, provide the occasion for this festival of the incarnation, and has done since the end of the third century. The Christmas crib and the nativity play can both be said to descend from the tableau of Christ’s birth that Francis of Assisi arranged when he celebrated Christmas at Greccio in 1223.
The Christmas season was, and often is, celebrated for twelve days, ending with the Epiphany. We are re-learning the tradition, in which Christmas lasts for a full forty days, ending with the Feast of the Presentation on 2 February (Candlemas).
The days around 25 December are a principal holiday in the secular calendar of Britain, and commercial pressures have led to much of Christmas celebration being displaced into Advent. It is an even greater challenge to celebrate the saints of the Christmas season: Stephen, who first paid with his life for following the incarnate Lord; John, who was believed to have lived to great old age in profound meditation on the Word made flesh; and the Holy Innocents, who draw our attention to the plight of children in a world where the implications of the birth of the Christ-child are not yet manifest.
This prayer may be used on any day in the Christmas Season:
Almighty God, who wonderfully created us in your own image and yet more wonderfully restored us through your Son Jesus Christ: grant that, as he came to share our humanity, so we may share the life of his divinity; who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Meon Valley Food Bank – PLEASE HELP
Thank you so much for all your kind donations.
Follow MVFB on twitter @MeonValleyFB or at www.meonvalleyfoodbank.co.uk.
Hackney and Bishop’s Waltham Deaneries Link
For many years the Deanery has collected food and clothes for a variety of church needs in Hackney to be taken up in December. Earlier this year our friends in Hackney told us that they now have built up their local contacts including food collections in their local Waitrose and several Schools so that they no longer need distance support. They have asked us to convey their warm thanks for our help over the years. Because of this there will be no collection of food and clothes for Hackney this Autumn. We shall still be grateful for any gifts of money which can be made payable to Bishop’s Waltham Deanery and will support our seven partners including the Winter Night Shelter.