Sunday, July 31, 2016

Don't give up!

Sunday 31st July 2016
Although the plastering and electrical work inside St Cuthbert's Bellingham has stopped us from using the church building on weekdays this month, we don't let anything prevent us from worshipping each Sunday morning.  A hard-working band cleared the east end yesterday and early this morning I delivered all the things needed for the service which have been stored in the rectory.  Twenty people joined in morning worship and chatted over coffee and biscuits before the churchwarden locked up again.  (Meanwhile the clergy drove off to St Cuthbert's Elsdon for a less conventional service in more normal surroundings attended by another thirty people.)
     Taking time out together for an hour of resting and listening to God is the perfect antidote to over-activity, sleepless nights and busy-busy-busy!

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Simonburn fete

Saturday 30th July 2016
The approach to Simonburn Green in the year of the Queen's 90th birthday

I didn't score, but it was the first time I've kicked a football since I was banned from playing at Greenhaugh First School several years ago: the entry in the County Educational Committee accident book read "Susan Ramsaran, aged 62, fell in the school playground playing football..."  What's more, the activity was part of the after-school club which is the modern equivalent of Sunday School.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Good to be home

Saturday 23rd July 2016
A hot morning above Bellingham but about ten degrees below the heat that we left in the south of England
Baptism/christening seems to be the "flavour of the week":  after two visits to prepare families for tomorrow's baptisms, I met someone who asked how to set about arranging a christening for her two children and herself.  (Perhaps also a wedding?)  Then home to answer a phone message about booking a baby's christening, a cheerful two years after we had the wedding.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Something for everyone

Saturday 9th July 2016
 A great cross-section of ages at St Cuthbert's Church fair
and a good family feel.  [See more pictures on Events page.]

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Another anniversary

Monday 4th July 2016
Indie's birthday breakfast (two today)

Electrical work started inside St Cuthbert's Bellingham today, as outside we flew the flag given to us by St Paul's Church in Bellingham U.S.A.  We fly it on 25th January for the feast day of St Paul, and on 4th July for American Independence Day  --  this being her birthday is how Indie came to be named "Independent Star".

St Thomas's Day

Sunday 3rd July 2016
A red altar frontal in church symbolising the death of a martyr: St Thomas died for his Christian faith  --  as Christians still do today in some parts of the world.  The disciple who has been called "doubting Thomas" was a courageous, loyal and honest man. We remembered the Gospel account of Thomas's recognising the Risen Christ today on his feast day, 3rd July, exactly twenty three years after I was ordained to the priesthood. On that day I read the Gospel in Canterbury Cathedral; today I did so in St Cuthbert's Bellingham and in All Saints Corsenside at the baptism of a child whose second name is Thomas.
     Red was appropriately symbolic in the evening for our Commemoration of the Battle of the Somme with the dreadful loss of so many Northumberland Fusiliers and others from the North Tyne and Rede valleys