The Rector's Letter
Each month the Rector writes an article for the Parish Magazine
October - to download a copy click here
The Rector Writes
I always associate October with Harvest. This is partly because I grew up in a village where most people worked on the land and so I have fond memories of Harvest Festivals and Harvest suppers in the village hall. Even though very few people in our village are now employed in agriculture, Harvest remains and important and popular festival.
Also Harvest is when we especially think of those who are poor in our own country or in other parts of the world. It is difficult for us to imagine what it feels like to be hungry or to walk miles to get some clean water.
Every tear The Bishop of St Albans lunches A Harvest appeal focusing on one country in the developing world.
This year he is inviting us to raise money for “Lighting up Tanzania”. He writes” Imagine if, when you flicked on a light switch nothing happened.
For many people in Tanzania, when access to electricity is scarce, households cannot function easily after dark., families struggle with everyday chores, their children suffer poor performance in school and without electricity all basic services, water, heating , education are hindered”
Lighting up Tanzania seeks to bring electricity in the form of solar panels to around 350 households in the rural area of Singida, Tanzania. These will make a huge difference . Presently people rely on paraffin style heaters (Kerosene) lamps in the evening, which have caused many serious burn injuries and their cooking is done on fire wood or charcoal creating high levels of smoke too.
This lack of electricity was brought home to me when I was in Sudan in 2011. As soon as it got dark all we could do was to go to bed. There was no opportunity to read no television and no internet. It felt as if we were living in the middle ages!!. Jesus came to give us “life” not just existence and so this means life in all its fullness of which electricity pays a vital role.
One family who have already installed solar panels in their home in Tanzania are experiencing the benefits and realise what a difference it has made to their quality of life
But of course we also want to remember those who are trapped in poverty nearer to home and also do not experience fullness of life as they struggle to find enough money for food.
So at Harvest we support people less fortunate than ourselves in two ways.
We do this in two
We take gifts of tinned and dried food to the Prebend Street Day centre in Bedford to support their work among the homeless and rootless.
We also give money we raise to Bishop Alan’s Harvest appeal.
So we hope that
you will be able to join us as we raise money and give food at harvest
The Harvest supper and quiz is on Saturday 5th October at 7pm
Tickets £10 to include a hot supper
The Harvest Festival is on Sunday 6th October
· 9.30am Family service(gifts of tins and dried goods most welcome)
· 6pm Harvest Festival evensong
If you cannot join us but would like to make a donation of goods or money please drop it round to the Rectory and mark the envelope “Bishop’s Harvest appeal”
In addition each year we are most grateful to Maulden School and Tudor Court Nursery for their generous support for our Harvest appeal.
Traditionally it is called Harvest Thanksgiving and as we thank God for all that we have received we want to share our abundance with those less fortunate than ourselves.
With all good wishes