Newsletter 17th December
As you read this, I will be taking the funeral of one of my oldest and very best friends in Bury St Edmunds. It was one of the most poignant moments of my life when he asked a couple of weeks before he died, knowing that the operation he was about to undergo was extremely risky, whether I would be prepared to do this. At times like this, one is inevitably reminded of all the happy times we have shared, the family celebrations, big birthdays, children’s weddings etc. Until recently (as you know) we had only ever lived in Coventry, whereas he and his wife had lived in Coventry, Preston, Bracknell, Bedford and Cambridge. We travelled far and wide to keep up with him, As well as being very close friends, we had worked together on two separate occasions. Although the memories now are all of the good times, I do recall that our relationship hasn’t been without its difficult moments. There have been times when I have recognized that if I wanted the friendship to survive, we would need to have some honest and painful conversations. We would need to seek each other’s forgiveness and be ready to forgive in return.
Sometimes, it can seem so much easier to walk away and find a new friend who seems less like hard work. I am so glad that I didn’t do this. St Paul says in Colossians chapter 3: “forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues, put on Love” This is by no means easy. But I promise you it is worth it.
Carol Singing at the Crown & Sceptre
We will be carol singing outside the Crown & Sceptre in Minsterley on Weds Dec 22nd at 7.15 p.m. for 20 minutes followed by mulled wine and mince pies. Please let Greg know if you are able to support this important community building event.
The funeral of Dorothy Hulton-Harrop, a long-time resident of Habberley, will take place on Thurs 23rd Dec at 2.30 at St Mary’s. The funeral of John Hinton will take place at the crematorium on Thurs Jan 6th at 2 p.m. Please remember their families in your prayers at this sad time.
Please do come along to one of our crib services on Christmas Eve, either 2 p.m. at Minsterley or 3.30 at Pontesbury. The production is entitled “Strictly Come Bethlehem” and is designed with both adults and children in mind.
Christmas Tree Festival
St George’s annual Tree Festival was a wonderful occasion. Many thanks to all those who worked so hard to lay on such a spectacular display.
Shrewsbury Brass Band
Are giving a Christmas concert at St George’s this Saturday at 7.30 p.m., their first in two years. Tickets (which include refreshments) are available on the door at £10 each.
Minsterley has now purchased 40 new bibles for church. These will be dedicated on Sunday. If you want a personal dedication in a copy that you have sponsored, please let Barbara know immediately.
If anyone knows anyone who would like a free Christmas dinner on Christmas Day delivered to their door, please let Greg know immediately. Do check with the individual that s/he would be happy to receive this.
There will be no services in the group on Boxing Day, although it is a Sunday. Greg and Fran will be on holiday until Jan 2nd, when there will be the usual range of first Sunday services.
Calendar for the Week
Sat 18th Shrewsbury Brass Band at St George’s at 7.30 p.m.
Sun 19th Carols at Hope Church at 9 a.m.
Carol Service at Holy Trinity Minsterley at 10.30
Holy Communion at Pontesbury at 10.30 p.m.
Christingle at Shelve Church at 4 p.m.
Pontesbury Carols by Candlelight at 6.30 p.m.
Mon 20th Stiperstones Brass Band Carol Concert at HTM at 7 p.m.
Weds 22nd Church Café (Christmas edition) at Minsterley 10-12
Carols at Sceptre & Crown at 7.15
Thurs 23rd Funeral of Dorothy Hulton-Harrop at Habberley at 2.30 p.m.
Xmas Eve Crib Services at 2 p.m. (Minsterley) and 3.30 p.m. (Pontesbury)
Habberley Carol Service at 5 p.m.
Carols on the Green at Pontesbury at 6 p.m.
Midnight Communion at 11.30 p.m. at St George’s
Xmas Day Holy Communion at Snailbeach at 9 a.m.
Holy Communion at Shelve at 9 a.m.
Group Service at Pontesbury at 10.30 a.m.
Sun 26th No services.