Sunday, August 29, 2021

Sunday worship podcast link and other news : August 29


Dear friends

Join us for worship online, on the phone or in the building today.

with best wishes
Anne Le Bas

Worship podcast        Order of service
You can also access this podcast by phoning 01732 928061

In the church building
10 am   Holy Communion
4pm      Outdoor Church in the churchyard (weather permitting)
6.30pm Evensong

During the week
Wednesday@10 am Good Book Club in the church hall
                       2 pm  Funeral: The Revd. Keith Blackburn (places limited so booking essential if you would like to come - please see below) 
Friday 9.30 am Morning Prayer in Church 

Trinity 13
James 1.17-end, Mark 7.1-8, 14-15, 21-23, 

Today's readings are both, in their different ways, about how we can know ourselves and love ourselves as God loves us. 
The Letter of James was written by an early Christian leader, possibly one of Jesus' own brothers, who became the leader of the church in Jerusalem, though this is disputed. He urges people to look at themselves as God looks at them, in the light of his love. 
In the Gospel, Jesus urges his hearers not to simply "play act" their faith. It is not about looking good on the outside, simply doing the things which were traditionally thought to be signs of purity and respectability, but about letting God change our hearts. 

Narcissus by Caravaggio. A beautiful young man stares at his own reflection in a still pool of water.The picture on the right is by Caravaggio, and its subject is the Greek legend of Narcissus, a beautiful youth who saw his own reflection in a pool of water - the only kind of mirror many people would ever encounter - and promptly fell in love with himself. He couldn't tear himself away from his reflection, and eventually died still gazing at himself. In his place, the flower which bears his name sprung up - narcissus being the botanical name for the daffodil. 
Caravaggio's picture might help us to think about what we feel when we look at ourselves, and how we feel about the whole business of self-reflection. Do we regard it as dangerous "navel-gazing", encouraging the "narcissism" which Narcissus embodied, or is it something which can be useful to us. How do we make sure that we are looking at ourselves with the eyes of God, neither judging ourselves too harshly nor overlooking the things which need our attention? 


  • Look in a mirror and try to draw what you see. 
  • Write under your self-portrait "God loves me".
  • Talk about what it feels like when you know that people love you.
The stories of the week which I will be including here each week, will also feature in our Wednesday @10 sessions. These will alternate between Good Book Club (1st Wed in church hall), Zoom Church (2nd, 4th & 5th Weds online), and Lavender Fields Communion (3rd Wed), but you are welcome to follow along whether you can join us in person on Wednesdays or not.

This month we’ll be looking at a selection of stories suggested for the season of “Creationtide” running up to harvest (Oct 10)
We start with Genesis 1, one of several accounts of Creation in the Bible. It was not meant to be a scientific account of the beginning of the world, but rather a meditation on what kind of creator we believe in and about his creation.
  • What do you notice about this story?
  • What do you think it tells us about how we should live?
More resources for Creationtide can be found here.
Keith Blackburn's funeral will take place in Seal Church on Wednesday Sept 1 at 2pm. Numbers will be limited in order to make the service as Covid-safe as possible. If you would like to attend, please contact me, preferably by email, to let me know and I will add you to the list if there is still room. 
SEAL CHOIR will be starting to rehearse again on Wed Sept 8th  at 7.30 pm in church. As we rebuild the choir after Covid we are keen to encourage any new members to come and join us. You don’t have to be a brilliant singer, or have any prior knowledge of music to join in – we welcome all comers and will help you learn to read music if that is something you struggle with. We also welcome those who can’t commit themselves regularly, but might be able to help out for special services. Please contact Philip Le Bas to find out more.
THE CHILDREN’S CHOIR will also be restarting its new term on Wed Sept 8th, at 5pm in the church hall.
PEWS FOR SALEChurch pews
As the Tea Station now occupies the area where the Children’s Chapel was, we are removing the pews in the North Aisle to re-establish a “pray and play” area there. This means we have some six-foot pews for sale! (We will be able to put folding chairs in the area if we need extra seating for special services.) If you would like to make an offer for one, we are asking £325 (or nearest offer) for each pew. Please contact Sally Thompson to find out more. They are being snapped up fast, so don’t delay if you want your little piece of Seal Church!

We will be holding our scarecrow festival again this year, from mid- September to mid-October. It isn’t a competition, just a bit of community fun, and the more scarecrows we have the better!  If you have nowhere to display your scarecrow in the village, we can find you a space! Please contact Marion Gilchrist or  me if you want to know more.
 If you are going to display a scarecrow, please let Marion know where he or she will be residing for the month (or part of it). She will then circulate a list so that people can do a village walk and spot them all!
The annual “Ride and Stride” in support of Kent’s historic churches (including our own) will be taking place on Saturday 11 Sept. A group will be doing a short walk to Kemsing Church, led by Andrew and Lise Michaelides, and there may be the possibility that I will lead a longer walk, continuing to Wrotham and Borough Green, and then returning by public transport (or your own private arrangements for lifts) if there is a demand. If you would like to join us on either the short or the long walk please let me know.


There will be a history walk around Seal on September 26th. These guided walks, by local historian, David Williams, are very interesting. There are just a few spaces left on this walk, so if you would like to join in  and learn the history of some of our village buildings, please let Marion Gilchrist know soon. The cost is just £5 per head, but numbers are limited for safety reasons.

Those of you that have already booked, will be contacted by the end of next week with starting venues, timings, etc.

Revd Canon Anne Le Bas
Would you like us to pray for you?
Email your prayer requests to:
Your email will be read by Anne Le Bas and Kevin Bright, the Vicar and Reader of Seal Church who will hold you in their prayers. Please tell us if you would like us to contact you.

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