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Letter to Parishioners 24th February 2021

February 23 - March 31

THE PARISH OF ST NICHOLAS, MIDDLETON 

 

FATHER WILLIAM MARSTON, M.A., VICAR

—————————————————————-

THE VICARAGE,

106, ELMER ROAD,

MIDDLETON ON SEA,

WEST SUSSEX,

PO22 6LJ

 

01243 586348   07835994225   w.marston@btinternet.com

 

Wednesday 24th February 2021

 

Dear Parishioner,

It looks as if things are improving, in terms of COVID. It’s amazing to think that a year ago, we were on the brink of a huge change for all of us.

Whilst some people have been able to return recently to worshipping at St Nicholas, I fully understand that it is not possible for some of you to do so at the moment, and we keep you in our prayers at Church.

I have been enormously touched by the expressions of good will at the announcement of my retirement on Sunday 23rd May 2021. I have very much enjoyed my twenty three and a half years here, with the great privilege of seeking to serve in an ancient parish such as ours, which has evolved and changed most interestingly over literally a millennium.

For those of you who cannot yet come back to Church, these are the Readings for March, which you might like to follow at, or near to the times, of the Services:

 

Wednesday 3rd March

8.00 a.m.   Jeremiah 18.18-20   Matthew 20.17-28

Thursday 4th  

          10.00 a.m.  Jeremiah 17.5-10   Luke 16. 9-31

 

SUNDAY 7th    THE THIRD SUNDAY OF LENT

          8.00/10.00 a.m.  Exodus 20. 1-17   1 Corinthians 1. 18-25   John 2. 13-22

 

Wednesday 10th

8.00 a.m.   Deuteronomy 4. 1, 5-9   Matthew 5. 17-19

Thursday 11th  

          10.00 a.m.  Jeremiah 7. 23-28   Luke 11. 14-23

 

SUNDAY 14th    

THE FOURTH SUNDAY OF LENT/MOTHERING SUNDAY

          8.00/10.00 a.m.  Exodus 2. 1-10   Colossians 3. 12-17   John 19. 25-27

 

Wednesday 17th  ST PATRICK, Bishop, Missionary, Patron of Ireland, c.460

8.00 a.m.  Isaiah 49. 8-15   John 5. 17-30

Thursday 18th  St Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem, Teacher, 386

          10.00 a.m.  Exodus 32. 7-14     John 5. 31-47

 

SUNDAY 21ST    

THE FIFTH SUNDAY OF LENT/START OF PASSIONTIDE

          8.00/10.00 a.m.  Jeremiah 31.31-34    Hebrews 5. 5-10   John 12. 20-33

 

Wednesday 24th Oscar Romero, Archbishop of San Salvador, Martyr, 1980

8.00 a.m.   Daniel 3. 14-20, 24-25   John 8. 31-42

Thursday 25th 

THE ANNUNCIATION OF OUR LORD TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY  

          10.00 a.m.  Isaiah 7. 10-14   Luke 1.26-38

 

SUNDAY 28th   PALM SUNDAY/THE START OF HOLY WEEK

          8.00/10.00 a.m.  Mark 11.1-11   Philippians 2. 5-11   Mark 15.1-39

 

I hope that you are finding the little book-let “Live Lent” helpful.

You might like to telephone someone you know, to discuss your thoughts. Also, for those of you with access to the internet, if you search for the web-site of the Diocese of Chichester, you will find further resources for keeping Lent.

We always have a Charity for Lent, and Heather Kirk writes now of this year’s one, which I am very grateful to her and Gerbera LeFort for spear-heading:

“Many thanks to everyone who has contributed to the Bags of Education. So far with donations of money and goods I have enough to fill 6 bags but I also have enough money donated (with gift aid) to hopefully fill another half dozen so watch this space!

If you have access to the internet and want to know about where the bags will be going to look under ‘Bags of Education-Door of Hope’.

Thank you again for all your love and generosity, 

Heather Kirk.”

 

Many thanks, too, to Susan Dakic for this poem, whose author is unknown. As you’ll see, it is ingenious in its’ ending, and I hope that it will appeal to dog-lovers and others alike:

“When God made the Earth and sky,

The flowers and the trees,

He then made all the animals,

And all the birds and bees.

And when his work was finished,

Not one was quite the same,

He said, “I’ll walk this earth of mine,

And give each one a name.”

And so he traveled land and sea

And everywhere he went,

A little creature followed him,

Until its strength was spent.

When all were named upon the earth,

And in the sky and sea,

The little creature said, “Dear Lord,

There’s not one left for me.”

The Father sniffed and softly said,

“I’ve left you ’til the end.

I’ve turned my own name back to front,

And called you Dog, my friend!””

Even though I am retiring in three months’ time, before then, do feel free to contact me, whether to say a prayer together, or to discuss a serious matter, or simply to have a chat.

With my good wishes, and prayers,

Fr William.

 

 

 

Details

Start:
February 23
End:
March 31