Chapter 175 [Day 361]: Sunday 14 March
Good morning to you all and a happy Mother’s Day to all you mums and grandmas. If you received flowers then you can give thanks for the beauty of God’s creation. If you received loads of chocolates, then perhaps the Lord’s Prayer would be more appropriate …… lead us not into temptation …..
Exactly one year ago today we held the last ‘normal’ (with singing, Communion etc) Sunday service at the Chapel. Two days later on the Tuesday we had our Coffee Morning but with significantly reduced numbers attending and that was the last time we were to use the Chapel building for just over 6 months. At the end of September, we re-opened the doors for restricted Sunday worship but just 5 weeks later were forced to close down again until December when we managed another 3 Sunday mornings. Since then the building has remained closed but we are hopeful of being able to meet together once again (albeit under restricted conditions) in the near future.
During the 16th century, people returned to their local mother churches for a service held on Laetare Sunday, or Mid-Lent Sunday. In this context, one's mother church was either the church where one was baptized, the local parish church, or the nearest cathedral (the latter being the mother church of all the parish churches in a diocese). Anyone who did this was commonly said to have gone 'mothering', a term first recorded in 1644. In later times, Mothering Sunday became a day when domestic servants were given a day off to visit their mother church, usually with their own mothers and other family members.
In modern times Mothering Sunday, or Mother’s Day, is the time when we show our thanks, gratitude and love to our mothers by visiting, sending cards or giving a gift. We appreciate how it was our mother who was probably the major influence in our early life and from our mother we learned so much that shaped what we would eventually become in adulthood. It was the mothers who created the society we grew up in by shaping our lives, habits and disciplines into our teenage. We not only owe a personal debt of gratitude to our own mothers and grandmothers, but our nation too must acknowledge the pivotal ways in which mothers shaped our nation. Sadly, in today’s society, bringing up children is too often considered to be the responsibility and duty of others.
Three days ago, we learned of the death of international evangelist Luis Palau who died of cancer at the age of 86. Over many years Luis had preached to tens of thousands across the world. His parents were significant influences in his early life growing up on the outskirts of Buenos Aires and in an 11 minute recorded extract, Luis reads from his autobiography relating how his beloved mother, a devout Catholic, discovered the peace with God she had been searching for >>> https://falconlodgechapel.sermon.net/21757498
Our tradition for Mothering Sunday at the Chapel over many years has been a service created and led by different mothers from the Chapel and culminating with every mother and grandmother attending being presented with flowers. Sadly we were not able to do that in 2020 nor this year but I hope the video service for today will remind you of those previous happy occasions.
Some of you will know or heard of local Christian composer and musician Roger Jones and I believe some of you have actually sung in his choir. Back in July 2010, I invited Roger with some of his band to lead our ‘Garden Praise’ event at Middleton Hall. Recently Roger and his team composed a new song ‘Engraved upon my heart’ based on verses from Isaiah 49 where God likens his love for his people with a mother’s love for her child. Being topically relevant for Mothering Sunday our service video begins with that song. >>> https://falconlodgechapel.sermon.net/21756264
Enjoy this Mother’s Day and Karen will be back with more of her musings on Wednesday