‘then Thank the Lord, O thank the Lord, for all his love’

As we celebrate the Harvest, the season of looking to the past at seeds we have scattered and to the future in what we reap and gather, we have so much to be thankful for, from the sun to the rain, from family to friends, weddings, baptisms, lives well lived, people we have loved but see no longer.

Birdham have already celebrated all that God has given at a full to bursting joyful service. West Wittering will be giving thanks for God’s bounty on the 7th October, and Itchenor will follow the next week, on the 14th (having recovered from their Harvest Supper on Monday 1st).

However, I have a special reason to be thankful at this time, and that is because of what happened two weeks ago, on Friday 14th September. On that day I was blessed to be licenced as Associate Vicar to serve the people of Birdham, Itchenor and West Wittering, at a service to celebrate Holy Cross.

It was an amazing, joy-filled evening, surrounded by friends from the Benefice and beyond, supported by those who have walked with me for the past 6 years of training, and serenaded by those who have given me such fun and friendship for the past year in ‘Hymns N Everything!’ (Oh, and of course special thanks to my sister, assignment proof reader and chauffeur for the evening – she really is the wind beneath my wings!).

With apologies to the Four Seasons, because it really was ‘O what a night’, the night might have ‘ended much too soon’, but I am looking forward to continuing to serve you all, working with the Rector, the Ministry and Leadership Teams, and getting to know you all even better, as we spread the good news of the kingdom, and have some fun along the way. (Oh, and don’t forget I am around on Fridays and Saturdays for a coffee, for lunch, or just for a chat! If you’re not careful I may just turn up!)

I hope you will forgive me if I sign off a little formally – but it is such a privilege to be able to say…
Revd. Sarah – Associate Vicar

Almighty and everlasting God, increase in us your fit of faith that, forsaking what lies behind and reaching out to that which is before, we may run the way of your commandments and win the crown of everlasting joy; 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.  Amen

We continue to pray for:
Clemmie, Peter Barnett, Michael Palmer, Charlotte Megenney, Ken Stanhope and Guy Solan

And those who have recently died and their loved ones:
Beryl Francis,  Brian O’Brien and Charles McDowall

If you know of anyone who needs our prayers or would appreciate a visit, please let the Rector or the Parish Administrator know.

Should you wish to contact the Rector his mobile number is 07538 11579.

Services for this weekend
8.00 BCP Holy Communion at West Wittering and Itchenor

At the main service at Birdham (9.30am) Jim Mould’s sermon theme will be “An inconvenient truth”. At West Wittering (10.00) Bruce Holben’s sermon theme will be “Mean spirit or generous heart? Your choice!”.  At Itchenor (11.00) Ben Harvey’s sermon theme will be “Actions speak louder than words”.

There will be Evensong at 6.00 at West Wittering and Susan Monks’ sermon theme will be ‘Hills and Valleys’

The Ministry Team are only too happy to talk through aspects of their Sermon.

Sunday 30th September – Trinity 18
Numbers 11. 4-6, 10-16, 24-29; James 5. 13-20; Mark 9. 38-50
1 Corinthians 1. 4-8; Matthew 22. 34-end
Exodus 24; Matthew 9. 1-8

Sunday 7th October – Trinity 19
Genesis 2. 18-24; Hebrews 1. 1-4; 2. 5-12; Mark 10. 2-18
Ephesians 4. 17-32; Matthew 9. 1-8
Joshua 3. 7-17; Matthew 10. 1-22