Hard to believe that it was six years ago this week that I came to serve in the Benefice. I had a tough interview with six (!) interviewers plus an increasingly exasperated Archdeacon…
I remember one of the questions only too well: ‘Can you work with women?’ I think it was a veiled question about women clergy and, as such, was not a question permitted at interview – the Benefice had already had to agree whether or not they could accept the ministry of female clergy. My answer was frank and honest. I have always worked with women and many were my line managers – as well as big sisters!
As a church we have depended for generations on the ministrations of women. How many men do you see doing the flowers in church or serving coffee after the service? Yes, so many of those activities which meet the human needs of the church family are met by women alone and we are all indebted.
Recently a new initiative for children’s work in West Wittering was brought to me and I couldn’t help but notice the following ‘I would also need to gather a team of ladies from St P & P’…. What about the men? Come on!
If the Old Testament reading is given this Sunday you’ll hear the story of God making women out of the bone of man. It’s a great moment of story- telling and its meanings are many and much misrepresented (and mostly by men!). I couldn’t resist sharing this with you with well-meant humour but also in thanksgiving and respect for the women who have sustained the life of the church and nurtured my life of faith and my service in this Benefice…
Faithful Lord, whose steadfast love never ceases and whose mercies never come to an end: grant us the grace to trust you and to receive the gifts of your love, new every morning. Amen
We continue to pray for:
Clemmie, Peter Barnett, Michael Palmer, Charlotte Megenney, and Guy Solan
And those who have recently died and their loved ones:
Beryl Francis, Brian O’Brien, Charles McDowall and Ken Stanhope
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 011579.
Services for this weekend
8.00 BCP Holy Communion at West Wittering and Itchenor
At the main service at Birdham (9.30am) Eric Eyre’s sermon theme will be “For Better Or Worse”. At West Wittering (10.00) Jonathan Swindells’ sermon theme will be “Doughnuts – how many is too may?”. At Itchenor (9.00) the theme for Little Nick’s will be a Godly Play Story about a journey through the desert.
There will be Evensong at 6.00 at West Wittering.
The Ministry Team are only too happy to talk through aspects of their Sermon.
Sunday 7th October – Trinity 19
West Wittering Harvest Festival
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
Sunday 14th October – Trinity 20
Itchenor Harvest Festival
Amos 5. 6-7, 10-15; Hebrews 4. 12-16; Mark 10. 17-31
Proverbs 9. 1-6; Matthew 22. 1-14
Joshua 5. 13- 6.20; Matthew 11. 20-30