From the Vicar Rev Paul

Dear Friends
As I looked out of my study window the other day, I noticed we had snowdrops in our lawn.  This of course is one of the joys of living somewhere new and seeing what comes up in the garden as the year goes on.  Of course it is also an indication of the changing weather we are having – snowdrops before the middle of January!
I’ve always admired the pluck and determination of the snowdrop – willing and keen to push through frozen ground to be one of the first harbingers of spring.  By the end of February I’m sure we’ll have daffodils as well! 
Unlike the snowdrops, Easter is late this year, meaning that the whole of February will be “ordinary time” for the church – that space between Christmas/Epiphany and Lent.  Ordinary in this sense refers not to the “commonplace or everyday” but to “measured time” between major festivals of the church… it’s the same place we get ordinal numbers from.  However, while the “Ordinary Time” might not be rooted in the everyday, the vast majority of our life is made of up the everyday, of work, home life, simple pleasures and routines – only punctuated by the occasional holiday (or “holy day”!) or family occasion or anniversary.  It is in the ordinary that we make most of our decisions, face our biggest challenges and that many of us meet God.  Trying to recapture the joy of the ordinary is a good antedote to our consumerist society, determined that we wish our lives away or at least spend as much of it away as we can!
At St Michaels we have been involved in planning what the next few years might look like in our church and our group of churches.  Some of this will involve trying to support people in their everyday, Monday – Saturday lives as well as on Sundays.  And to bless and celebrate this process, Richard Frith, Bishop of Hereford will lead our group communion service at St Mary’s Marden on 17th February at 10am.  All are welcome to this service – please do come if you would like to!
Another development at St Michaels has been an ongoing revamp of the children’s area.  There is no better way to celebrate the ordinary by watching children play, seeing them use their imagination and take in the world around them.  Children (and their parents) are welcome at all our services, it would be great to see you there.
In the meantime, think of the plucky snowdrop – like God’s love it is irrepressible and determined.  May the Lord bless you richly this February.


St Michaels and All Angels Church Services

Services During February
Sunday 3rd Feb.        6.00pm           Evensong(*)
Sunday 10th Feb.     9.30am          Holy Communion(*)
Sunday 17th Feb.     10.00am       Group Communion Service at Marden Church
                                                                                                 With the Bishop of Hereford
Sunday 24th Feb.     9.30am          Holy Communion
                                            6.00pm           Evensong
(*) Denotes service when incense will be used