The Parish of
From the vicar
This year the month of May is blessed with the feast of Pentecost when the gift of the Holy Spirit to the first Christians is celebrated. Sometimes this feast is referred to, with considerable justification, as the birthday of the Church. It is an occasion for much joy and also prayer for the life and work of the Church in the world.
The word ‘church’ has many uses in English and this sometimes leads to confusion so it is worth spending a moment thinking about the ways in which it is used.
The primary biblical meaning of the word is descriptive. It is translated from the Greek ‘ecclesia’ and means variously an assembly of Christians, a gathering for worship or a local community (2 Corinthians 1: 1). The pre-Christian meaning would simply have been ‘an assembly of citizens’.
Sometimes the word means the equivalent of ‘the household of God’ whether it is referring to a local church or to Christians generally (Acts 15: 22).
The word may be used to describe the Church as an earthly institution, either as a denominational grouping of Christians such as the Church of England or as an object of study in sociology or another discipline.
The word can have a transcendent meaning when used to describe Christians as members of the Body of Christ, militant here on earth and triumphant in heaven. Such usage expresses the unity of Christians in Christ Jesus whilst anticipating their perfection in him (Hebrews 2: 12).
Commonly in English the word is used to describe the building in which Christians meet for worship.
It might therefore be possible to write the following sentence as an illustration.
‘As a member of the Church of England I intend to go to church to worship with other members of the church gathered in spirit with other churches around the world that together we might be the Church of Jesus Christ to the glory of God.’
That may be a little forced, but it serves to emphasise the point that the word ‘church’ has many uses, the meaning of which need to be determined from the context. If in doubt, just sing a hymn about it!
The Church of God a kingdom is,
Where Christ in power doth reign;
Where spirits yearn till, seen in bliss,
Their Lord shall come again.
St Peter’s Spring Fair and Plant Sale
Saturday 5thMay from 2.00pm to 4.30pm in the Parish Hall.
Delicious cream teas, a plant stall, a cake stall, home-made bread,
games, ‘This and That’ and a raffle.
This year the Spring Fair will be the major fundraising exercise for the benefit of the charities which we support regularly at St. Peter’s, especially those working with the persecuted and the disadvantaged.
Please do your best to support the event in whatever way you can.
Pray for our ministry to those who celebrate baptisms, weddings and funerals at St. Peter’s.
From the diary
Wednesday 2nd May, 10.00am Mothers’ Union Corporate Communion (SS Philip & James)
Saturday 5th May, 2.00pm Spring Fair
The Ascension of the Lord
8.00pm Mass with hymns (Book of Common Prayer)
Wednesday 16th May, 10.00am Said Mass (St. Matthias, Apostle)
8.00pm Parochial Church Council in the Parish Hall
8.00am Said Mass (Book of Common Prayer) 9.30am Parish Mass (Modern rite)
Holy Hour for the May Devotion
Tuesday 22ndMay, 8.00pm
8.00am Said Mass (Book of Common Prayer) 9.30am Parish Mass (Book of Common Prayer)
The Red Trust, Bushey: suggested donations for the Foodbank
We make up bags of different sizes so we need small, medium and large in all the foods listed.