UNITED REFORMED CHURCH
News from St Andrew’s
Craig’s letter of 15 October
Revd Craig Bowman
This Sunday we shall be celebrating harvest. It will be yet another strange occasion with a limited display, fewer people present and we will not be singing the traditional harvest hymns (although we will be able to listen to them).
In the film, Shenandoah, the great James Stewart plays the part of a farmer who faithfully works his land and supports his family. He is not a very religious man, but his wife is. He promises her as she lies on her deathbed that he will continue the custom of saying table grace before each meal. And so, every day he would pray this prayer: Lord, we came here and cleared the trees. We took out the stones, and we broke the sod. We prepared the fields and sowed the seed. We tended the crops and fought pestilence and weathered the storms and drought, but we thank you anyway. Amen.
In these pandemic times we are determined to come and give thanks at harvest, not out of a sense of duty like the thanks offered by James Stewart’s character, but because we are genuinely grateful for the gifts of this world with which God blesses us and through which he sustains us. And we will bring gifts as a symbol of our gratitude and a way of sharing the blessing with others.
Our gifts will support the Sutton Women’s Refuge and we are grateful for all who have already contributed. If you still wish to make a contribution but are not able to be in church on Sunday a cash donation can be given by clicking on the ‘Donate’ button on the church website and selecting ‘Harvest Offering’, or by sending a cheque to the church office. jenni|Jenni Dickinson is happy to drive to any of you to pick up donations from your home and will deliver them to the refuge after our service on 18th October.
As usual this service will be available from 10.30am on Sunday 18th October by calling 020 3870 2810 or through the church website. And, of course, those of you joining in from your homes will be able to sing the hymns - please sing out your thanks.
Every time we eat a meal, remind us of your presence.
Every time we drink, remind us of your blessings.
Every time we see a need, give us a sense of sharing.
Every time we enjoy your creation, fill us with thanks and praise,
so that when we gather again next harvest-time we shall know that you have sustained us,
and we have lived and given ourselves for you. Amen
Posted on 15 Oct 2020