I hope everyone is keeping well and safe.
This Sunday see’s us celebrating The Presentation of Christ at the Temple (a few days late, any excuse to keep the Christmas party going!). This marks 40 days after Christ was born when Mary and Joseph took the Baby Jesus to the Temple according to Jewish law and custom and there offered the appointed sacrifices to God. This feast brings to a close our long season of celebrating the incarnation. The feast is also known as Candlemass and traditionally we would have blessed the years supply of candles, reminding ourselves of how we must now carry out the work of Christ bringing light to our communities and our world. It is a bold statement of intent, as we seek to reconstruct and rebuild after the last 2 years of pandemic, will be taking this to heart as we seek to Grow Faith, Bring Hope and Demonstrate Love in a myriad of different ways over the coming year.
On Tuesday the clergy across the Diocese gathered on Zoom for Synod. We had 3 very inspiring speakers speaking of our mission and how to reach out into our communities to share our faith. One of the speakers was reflecting on life and was saying how if we watch a good film, or go out for a good meal somewhere, we can’t wait to share it with others, telling them excitedly how they should go and watch the film or try the new restaurant themselves. But when it comes to our faith we are quite shy, and rather reluctant to invite others and share the good news we have in our lives of faith. I wonder why that is?
We have got coming up some things to help us think through who we might invite, how we might invite them and what we might invite them to…
During Lent itself we will be running the LyCig course (Leading your Church into growth). This course will be held on Zoom on Monday nights at 7pm beginning on the 7th of March. This course is designed to help us think through in our churches how we go about inviting people and what we invite them to so that we can share the faith that means so much to us all. For it to work we need at least a few people from each of our churches to come along so please do make an effort to come and ask others in your church to join. If you want to know more about it then just ask any of the clergy or give me a ring.
You will have seen in our diary that during Holy Week we have a lot of events to help us live our faith as we follow the story of the most important time in our church year.
On Palm Sunday we will cross the threshold into Holy Week with the procession of palms from Llanbedr, Llanrhydd and Llanfair, all meeting up on the square for the Passion Gospel before proceeding to Llanfwrog for our Holy Eucharist. This presents a great opportunity to witness to our faith to others and also a good event to invite people who might be on the edge of the church.
As we continue through Holy Week we have something every day to which we can invite people –
Monday 7pm Cedar Supper in Llangynhafal, re-enacting the passover supper which tells the story of faith from the Old Testament as Jesus would have done.
Tuesday 10am – 4pm Holy Week Pilgrimage, Starting from Llanynys at 10am we will follow the narrative of Holy Week from Jesus’ entrance to Jerusalem up to the Last Supper on Maundy Thursday as we walk to Llanychan and then on to Llangynhafal.
Wednesday 2pm The Passion Narratives in St Peter’s Ruthin. This is a dramatical performance of poetic narratives of some of the eyewitnesses to the Passion story written by the Poet Colin Price, interspersed with classical musical.
Maundy Thursday 10.30am St Asaph Cathedral Chrism Eucharist
6pm in Llanynys, Liturgy of the Last Supper and Watch in the Garden of Gethsemane
7pm in Llanarmon Liturgy of the Last Supper
7pm St Peter’s Ruthin Liturgy of the Last Supper
8pm Llanbedr DC Liturgy of the Last Supper (in the Church) followed by the Watch in the Garden of Gethsemane until midnight (people are free to come and go during this time as they are able)
1pm St Peter’s Ruthin
2pm Llanbedr DC
2pm Llanfair DC
10am Morning Prayer and Reflection at the Old Church in Llanbedr DC
8pm Mission Area Easter Vigil and 1st Mass of Easter in Llanfair DC
Please do make a note of these dates and over the coming weeks maybe think of 4 or 5 people to pray for and invite to join you at one or two events over Holy Week.
There’s no shying away from the fact that if we want a church in the future there is some hard work ahead of us, but there are plenty of green shoots as we move into spring and as I think of all the things we are doing and are going to do I’m filled with hope for the future and it is thank to all of you faithfully week by week being the body of Christ in this place and the prayers you offer which are the heartbeat of all we do.
Mission Area Leader of Dyffryn Clwyd www.DyffrynClwyd.Co.Uk