Sunday 20 April 2014

Easter at Hatcliffe

I offered our neighbouring parishes to cover an Easter 11.00 (after our 9.30 at Bradley) and it was to Hatcliffe that I was sent, which was a new church for me.

The inside of the north wall betrays the past demolition of a north aisle even more clearly than the same feature at Bradley...

... while from the outside it almost appears that a north door (and lancet window above?) was inserted in the infill wall when the aisle was demolished and then filled in itself.

I enjoyed some of the quasi-industrial features as much as the north wall and the beautiful eighteenth century chalice and paten I used including this alternative source of hot air for the service...

... and this slightly less well kept but apparently equally effective water feature.

Wednesday 9 April 2014

Church growth (2)

Still not insightful or rantful (or, more strictly, publishably rantful), but here at least is what it looked like arriving at St Nicolas’ for Matins yesterday.

Shortly after the service we heard Leither Taylor had died during the night in St Andrew’s Hospice - expected news which brought that strange combination of deep sorrow and relief, regret and thanksgiving.  A member of St Michael’s congregation for over forty years, she was a woman of determination and of multiple kindnesses.

I mentioned last week a decade of twelve newly confirmed adult members of St Michael's, eight of whom had been present there the previous Sunday.  I now set alongside that the knowledge of Leither among at least a dozen any eight of whom we might have expected to see there on any particular Sunday ten years ago.  We give thanks on every remembrance of them.

Thursday 3 April 2014

Church growth

The view of and through the young weeping ash in St Michael's churchyard early yesterday.

I have no particular insight or rant to add to the pictures this week.

I enjoyed Tony Benn's reported advice 'never to wrestle with a chimney-sweep'.

The revised proposed legislation to enable women to be ordained as Bishops came to our Diocesan Synod at the weekend; substantial time has been set aside for the debate but an initial show of hands for potential speakers revealed nobody really wanted to talk further (two clergy from the same deanery did graciously about the other with whom they disagreed); in common with the half of the dioceses which have already voted, there was then substantial agreement.  The cumulative totals across the dioceses are now 1107 in favour and 143 against.

Two new members of St Michael's were confirmed last night; a dozen adults (with an average age of 65) have been confirmed from the church over the last ten years, eight of whom were among the fifty worshippers there on Sunday morning.