DAY 76: Tuesday 2 June
BE STILL AND KNOW
Good morning all
Yesterday I received the LINK newsletter from Falcon Lodge Methodist Church which for the first time came via email rather than the usual printed copy which we leave at the Chapel for anyone to read.
From reading their news it was sad to learn of the recent death of Maisie Vernon who was a member of the Methodist Church but was also involved over the years with the Chapel through Ladies Hour, Holiday at Home, minibus trips and occasionally joining with us on a Sunday morning.
Maisie had been unwell for some time suffering with dementia and a couple of years ago moved from Lingard House in Walmley to a Care Home. She was taken to Walsall Manor hospital in May where she died from advanced dementia and Covid-19.
I have taken the liberty of ‘borrowing’ today’s thoughts from the Methodist LINK newsletter -
THOUGHTS ON THE LOCKDOWN – by Giles Wheeler
In fairness, I’ve quite enjoyed this time – the slower pace of life, not having meetings where objectives, business needs and ideas of how we are going to achieve them are continually discussed.
So what have I been doing with my time? Physically, I’ve been spending more time in the garden, seeing how many walks can be done from home on paths that I’ve have never been down before – and taking the opportunity to visit a few church members on foot – please accept my apologies if I haven’t spoken to you / visited you during this period. From a mental side I’ve been trying to keep my brain active by doing crosswords and ‘Killer Sudokos’ – I’ve found out that the number 45 is key to solving these!
That’s the physical and mental side of things – so what about the spiritual side?
In times of quiet, I often remember the verse from Psalm 46 v10 – Be still and know that I am God.
The Good News version says ‘Stop Fighting and know that I am God’, which doesn’t quite resonate with me – but may well resonate with many others as we have just passed the 75th Anniversary of VE Day, when those words would have been more appropriate than ever.
I’ve also enjoyed a number of online services, not only from our District but from further afield and from other denominations. Not all of these have ‘hit the spot’, but it has been good to see how other Christians have been worshipping in these challenging times.
I’m writing this just after Ascension Day, and if we think about the events that followed the Ascension we come to Pentecost – the coming of the Holy Spirit. This was accompanied by a great wind (and I can tell you that the wind is howling at the moment!) and looking at my computer for reference, the first time the phrase ‘Wind of Change’ was used was 60 years ago by the then Prime Minister, Harold MacMillan, about the political situation in South Africa.
When Church services resume in the flesh, and they will, I think we will have to acknowledge that there will be a change and things will be different. We will probably have to self-distance in church, which will mean a different seating arrangement and there will be those who will still be self-isolating due to medical instruction, meaning significantly smaller congregations. We know that services can’t restart until we get direction from the Government as to the way ahead.
Until then, Church, the body of the people is carrying on. ‘Church Without Walls’, is one of the phrases you may have heard mentioned in recent times. Never more so has this been appropriate as we are unable to worship as usual in our Church as we support one another with phone calls, deliveries, food banks etc. This seems like a modern day response to what happened at the first Pentecost.
So in conclusion, thank you for adapting as best you can to these strange times. I know from speaking to some of you, it hasn’t been easy – especially if you have had limited contact with the outside world. Please try to draw strength from the verse I shared earlier – Be Still and Know that I am God.
Here’s a Chapel Hymnalong to singalong >>> BE STILL AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD
We don’t have any updates on Vera or Sheila but we have heard that Chris Brookes is going to venture out this week - very carefully!
We did hear that Neil was queuing at Sainsburys last week and a member of staff came up to him and said “you look like an elderly person – follow me into the store”. (What’s the secret Neil so that we can jump the queue too?)
MAKE YOU SMILE:
A school teacher injured his back and had to wear a plaster cast around the upper part of his body.
It fitted under his shirt and was not noticeable at all.
On the first day of term, still wearing the plaster cast under his shirt, he found himself assigned to the toughest students in the school.
He walked confidently into the rowdy classroom, he opened the window as wide as possible and then busied himself with desk work.
When a strong breeze made his tie flap, he took the desk stapler and stapled the tie to his chest.
Discipline was never a problem from that day forth!