Seven Churches in South Oxfordshire

From the Rector: Tuesday 5th March 2024

Celebrating Motherhood

Dear friends,

When I was a young curate, in Yorkshire, there was only one person in the church that Ian, my training vicar, was afraid of. This was Olive, the chairwoman of the Otley branch of the Mother’s Union. Ian’s nervousness was rather puzzling to me, for Olive was the sweetest, kindest lady you ever might wish to meet, a million miles away from the terrifying “Norah Batty” stereotype of ferocious Yorkshire women. I once asked Ian why it was that, if he saw Olive coming, he would determinedly cross the road, or, if in church would disappear into the vestry with an air of intense purpose. “Ah, lad,” he sighed. “She can get things out of me that the Gestapo couldn’t. She just has this way of asking, and I can’t say no.”

Olive had a purpose – which was to care for her little band of mothers and support them, and she went about it with determination, but won her battles with kindness and love. What drove her was the understanding of the vital role that mothers play in any healthy society, and that, if children are to be well cared for and nurtured, then this starts with education, support and encouragement for mothers. She didn’t mind bothering Ian, or anyone else, for this goal. Because it was important.

The Mother’s Union, started by Mary Sumner in 1876 is now a global Christian Charity with over four million members. It does particularly important work in Africa and other developing countries, supporting women, children, and family life.  Join us this Sunday as we give thanks to God for mothers across the world, and celebrate the blessings of “our mother the Church” on this mid point Sunday of Lent.

Worship Services for Mothering Sunday 10th March

9.30am Morning Prayer at St John’s Stoke Row with Mr Peter Ferguson

11am Holy Communion for Mothering Sunday  at St Peter and Paul, Checkendon with Canon Kevin Davies, and seasonal refreshments.

Midweek zoom service: Wednesday Evensong at 5.00pm  410 935 129

also for your diary: Checkendon Church Easter Working Party Sat 23rd March 10am -12noon. Please come and help with a pre-Easter spring clean!

Services for Holy Week and Easter now on the website, and a Church Near You.

Flowers for everyone

This stunning display was seen a few years ago in Checkendon Church – wonderful spring colour, shape, depth, texture. A real explosion of beauty, for us all to share. Thank the Lord for all his gifts in creation, and for the skills he gives us to share in his creative work. What will you do with all this love, today?         With every blessing, Revd Kevin.


One Comment

  1. I love the story about Olive. My mother was in the Mothers’ Union for over 50 years, latterly as a lone member as the meetings were getting too far away. She would have loved this story too.

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