The Rector's Letter
Each month the Rector writes an article for the Parish Magazine
To download a copy Click Here for April
I am writing this letter towards the end of my two and a half months Study leave. It has been good to catch up with reading, administration and also to take time out of parish life to think and reflect.
Also I have enjoyed walking along the Greensand Ridge walk and trekking in Northern Cyprus. I find walking gives me space to think and pray as well as other physical benefits too.
However the highlight of my tame away from the parish was my trip to Ethiopia. It is a fascinating country no least because it has never been colonised. I was surprised to learn that they use the Julian calendar and so Ethiopia is seven years behind the rest of the world. . They have twelve months of 30days and an additional thirteenth month with 5 or 6 days.
They also tell the time differently too. As Ethiopia is so near to the Equator daylight is pretty consistent throughout the year many Ethiopians us a 12 hour clock with one cycle from Dawn to Dusk and the other from Dusk to Dawn.
The economy of the country is also behind much of the world .With regard
To religion they are also proud that little has changed over the centuries.
There is a tradition that after the Queen of Sheba visited King Solomon she
Bore a son. He became the first King in the Ethiopian Dynasty of which
Hailie Salassie was the last.
There is another important tradition that the lost Ark of the Covenant is
now housed in a Church in Axum. .As it is guarded day and night by a priest
it can neither be proved nor disproved. Whatever the truth this helps to
explain why Ethiopian Orthodoxy places a heavy emphasis on the Old
Testament. So shoes have to be removed on entering a Church as Moses
removed his shoes when he met with God at the burning bush (Exodus 3)
Women have to wear scarves to cover their hair in accordance with St
Paul’s teaching (I Corinthians 11)
The Church traces its origins right back to the New Testament. There were
From Ethiopia present on the Day of Pentecost and we know that Philip
Baptised an Ethiopian Treasurer whom he met on the road to Gaza.
Although Christianity came to England later than Ethiopia we too have a
long tradition of which we are proud.
However over the years attendance at regular worship has declined and
many small village churches are under threat of closure.
Of course we recognise that life is busy and with Sunday sport and Sunday
Shopping there is a danger that we will become a secular nation.
That is why we believe it is important for the church to be open every day
for Prayer and quiet reflection. We also have a variety of services so that there is something to suit everyone.
We have seen an increase in the number of people attending Christmas,
Easter, Harvest and other important Festivals as well as our monthly Family
Se we hope that you will always feel welcome to join us.
As Christians believe that it is important to come to church or there is a
danger that we can squeeze God out of our lives. God
Easter is the most important Festival in the Christian Calendar as we
celebrate the joy of the resurrection
We have services throughout Holy Week.
There is an Agape Communion on Maundy Thursday, The Walk of
Witness son Good Friday in the morning and “The Last Hour “at 2pm
On Easter Day there is a Dawn service as well as services of Holy
Communion and Sung Communion too.
Even though Christianity was brought to England later than to Ethiopia we
like them are proud of our heritage.
With all good wishes