The Parish of Freshford, Limpley Stoke and Hinton Charterhouse
November has arrived, kind of snuck up on us, hence the reason this letter is a little late. Sorry for the delay but here goes… October was a busy month in the Rectory and in the parish but it had some highlights, especially in our welcoming Freshford Church School into St Peter’s for their Harvest. Between the gifts from pre-school, school and members of the congregation more than two loads of gifts were taken to the Hub in Bradford-on-Avon, as well as a sizable gift of money for their debt advice service. It is so good to give generously as we enjoy all that we have.
Generosity is an interesting though sometime difficult topic. What constitutes generosity? March 12, see Jesus bring a poor widow to the attention of his disciples:
‘42 But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents.
43 Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. 44 They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.”’
Is this generosity? You might say it is foolishness as we are told the widow gave all she had to live on! So often we assume our generosity is in parting with relatively small gifts of food and other items at harvest time, which we may well not use ourselves anyway. Or to give a donation of money to help a ‘worthy cause’. But this does not stack up very well against the example Jesus highlighted. I am guessing the widow was not destitute but this was her pilgrimage to the Temple and on such an auspicious occasion and to a generous God, it seemed right to her to give all she had.
Difficult for us to get our head around, yet in our Good News (Gospel) we see even more abundant generosity than this. It is, of course, found in the life and death of Jesus, not just giving all he had to live on but also his very life so that we might find peace and life in the fullest sense. Released from spiritual poverty to gain the incomprehendable riches of our inheritance as children of God.
November is not many people’s favourite month but it still gives us that sense that, yet again, we have enough! Winter is rapidly approaching and with it the glimpses of Christmas celebrations! This is likely to be my last Christmas as a working minister – so ask me next year what I am going to be doing over Christmas – my answer will be different.
So what is the pattern of our services in November?
11th November (Remembrance day)
11.00am short service of remembrance at St John’s, Hinton Charterhouse, by the war memorial in church.
12th Remembrance Sunday
10.30am Remembrance service at St Peter’s Freshford with member of the Royal British Legion.
4.00pm short service of remembrance at St Mary, Limpley Stoke
10.30am Morning service at St Mary’s, Limpley Stoke and
4.00pm Family Focus – preparing for Christmas – in St John, Hinton
10.30am Morning communion in St Peter’s, Freshford
10.30am Morning Service at St Peter’s, Freshford
Wednesday Mornings 8.30am at the Old Bakery.
Please join us as we pray for the parish. Pam Southam
Midweek Holy Communion service *
At St Peter’s Church, Freshford on Wednesday 29th November
* This will be an informal service using more traditional language and pre-consecrated bread and wine. The service will last for approximately 30 minutes.
Wednesday afternoons – Tea, cake & chat
Please do come and join us in the Old Bakery on Wednesday afternoons from 2.30 – 4.30 for tea, coffee, cake and chat. Everyone is very welcome.
Ladies Wednesday walking group
Hi everyone, here are the dates for walking into January 2024.
8th November, 6th December and 10th January 2024. You will notice that there are a few 5-week gaps between walks. The 6th of December will be our Christmas walk, more about this nearer the time…
List of contacts
Rectorymike@gmail.com Tel 01225 723570 (Day off Friday!)
Churchwardens St Peter’s, Freshford
Roland Birchby email@example.com Tel: 01225 723432
Debbie Ashcroft firstname.lastname@example.org
Steve Ashcroft email@example.com
Churchwarden St John’s, Hinton Charterhouse
Karen Roberts-Wray (Grattage) firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 01225 729364
Churchwardens St Mary’s, Limpley Stoke
Kathy Tucker Kathltucker.email@example.com Tel: 07883 301500
Richard Hutchinson contact tba
Debs Jones firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 01225 720347