Sunday, July 05, 2020

Sunday worship and other news...

Dear friends
The links to our worship this week are below.
Best wishes
Anne Le Bas

SUNDAY WORSHIP July 5 : Trinity 4

Morning Worship Podcast        Morning Worship Service sheet       Morning hymn words
Evensong Podcast                    Evensong Service sheet                    Evensong hymn Words

Seal Church Zoom meetings this week:

Zoffee – Sunday chat at 11 am email for the link

Wednesday Zoom Church – Wed  at 11 am Twenty minutes of informal worship with our friends at Lavender Fields. Everyone is welcome.
email for the link.

Zoom Children’s Choir -
Wed at 5pm
Thurs at  4pm
please contact for the link. Any children are welcome for 30 minutes of fun songs.

Zoom Adult Choir – Wednesday 7.15 Contact for the link.

Zoom home groups and Friday Group – email for the links.

Trinity 4

Today’s sermon ponders the words of Jesus “Come to me, all you who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest”.

This weekend has seen a great deal of change in the world around us, with many businesses, pubs and restaurants opening up, and change can be very wearying. Churches can now open for worship again, but we are proceeding very cautiously, with a short service in church at 10 am, basically identical to our morning worship podcast - except that we can’t sing hymns, and, of course, it will be hedged around with all sorts of restrictions about where people can sit, hand sanitising, social distancing and so on. I am expecting that most people, and certainly those who are vulnerable because of their age or underlying heath conditions will prefer to stay at home. As we only have room for 35 people, there won’t be room for everyone anyway, and it will be “first come, first served”. It has been a lot of work – and quite a bit of worry – sorting out all the details that go with public worship at the moment, but I know that there are some folk, especially those who can’t easily access the internet, for whom it will be important to worship in the building. We will think about adding Holy Communion and Evensong when we are able to, but it may not be until mid-August. We will continue to produce podcasts for as long as we need to, and these weekly newsletters too.

It is all very wearying, though, for all of us as we contemplate another change in our patterns of life, even if it is a positive one, and I know that many people are feeling exhausted by the emotional strain of these past months, and contemplating the future too.  
  • What causes you to feel “weary and heavy laden?
  • Do you need to cut yourself some slack?
  • Jesus tells us to “come to him” when we are weary and burdened. How do you do that in your daily life?
All Age Ideas and Resources

Talk with your children about what makes them, and you, feel weary.
When Jesus talked about those who carried “heavy burdens” what do they think he meant?
What does it feel like to carry heavy burdens, and what helps us when we do?

Roots on the web family worship

Rochester Diocese all age worship sheet

Adult reflection links
Prayer of the week

Be present, O merciful God,
and protect us through the silent hours of this night,
so that we who are wearied
by the changes and chances of this fleeting world,
may rest upon your eternal changelessness;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

This very ancient prayer is part of the order of prayer for the service of Compline, or Night Prayer, which ends the day. It comes from the Leonine Sacramentary, a collection of prayers which dates from at least the seventh century, and possibly much earlier, as it is named after Pope Leo 1  (440-61). It is wonderfully comforting  prayer, which reminds us that whatever “changes and chances” we are going through, God’s love is still the same, and always will be. If you are feeling weary, or wake in the middle of the night, this is the prayer for you!

I heard the voice of Jesus say

This by Horatius Bonar  written in 1846, draws from a number of stories in the Gospel including the meeting of Jesus with a Samaritan woman at a well in John 4, but also to the Gospel set for today, in which Jesus says “Come to me all who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest”. The tune, Kingsfold, to which it is often sung is  a very ancient folk tune arranged by Ralph Vaughan Williams. The picture is by Giovanni Brina

1 I heard the voice of Jesus say,
"Come unto me and rest;
lay down, O weary one, lay down
your head upon my breast."
I came to Jesus as I was,
weary and worn and sad;
I found in him a resting place,
and he has made me glad.

2 I heard the voice of Jesus say,
"Behold, I freely give
the living water; thirsty one,
stoop down and drink, and live."
I came to Jesus, and I drank
of that life-giving stream;
my thirst was quenched, my soul revived,
and now I live in him.

3 I heard the voice of Jesus say,
"I am this dark world's Light;
look unto me, your morn shall rise,
and all your days be bright."
I looked to Jesus and I found
in him my Star, my Sun;
and in that light of life I'll walk,
'til trav'ling days are done.

 Horatius Bonar 1808 –1889
 Resuming public worship 

From this Sunday morning there will be a short service (not Holy Communion) at 10 am each week. We will add in Communion and Evensong when we feel we can safely manage them.
There will some quite strict restrictions on our worship, however, to comply with government guidance.

Those who are vulnerable for any reason are STRONGLY ADVISED to continue worshiping at home with our audio podcasts (see below), and others may wish to as well. There is a 
video explaining what to expect here (script here)  and a summary here.

There will be single use service sheets in church, but 
you can also download one here and bring it with you if you prefer. The contact tracing form will also be provided, but you can download one here.

The church will continue to be open for private prayer between about 9.30 and 5pm each day.

Our podcasts of morning and evening worship, which will continue to be produced for as long as we can't all be together, are above. Check back here on Sunday morning from 8.00 am onwards for the links.

You can find out more in the video below.
And finally...
With churches having very limited spaces on offer in the new dispensation because of the social distancing rules, some priests are getting themselves very organised… I am glad to be sticking to the “first come, first served” method myself, but if we still need to do all this by Christmas, I may have to take a leaf out of this chaps book… Thanks to several of you who sent me this, evidently wondering whether I might need the idea!
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