Seven Churches in South Oxfordshire

From the Rector: Tuesday 11th June 2024

Pray your part

Dear friends,

When it comes to election season, most of us have a fairly limited tolerance of the media’s seemingly inexhaustible supply of political introversion. “Never mind about the nation’s toenails,” we cry at the radio, “ask why the legs are missing!” Its an important season in which we have an opportunity to not just think about the big questions, but to offer our national life (legs and all) to God. The Archbishops are inviting  us to join with them in a short daily prayer and reflection over the next three weeks, as both voters, and citizens, exploring a number of different themes from a Christian persepctive. There will be printed booklets available for free in the Team churches from next Sunday, or you are able to sign up here to have the reflection emailed to your phone or computer. Each daily reading, reflection and prayer takes no more than a couple of minutes, and is a welcome antidote to the point-scoring and confrontationalism seemingly embedded in every channel. I do commend it to you.

This coming Sunday we give thanks for fathers everywhere – do join us. The family service at Checkendon comes with “added coffee” in that it will also be available before the service begins, should you wish to arrive early to chat.

Worship Services for Fathers Day – Sunday 16th June

9.30am Informal Worship at St John’s Stoke Row with Mr Brian Turner

11am Family Service for Father’s Day at St Peter and Paul, Checkendon with Canon Kevin Davies. An informal service, with the music group, and coffee from 10.45am

Nature Notes

The garden is lush, thanks to the wet winter, but everything is slow, as the sun has been noticeably absent and the temperatures well down on where they should be. Climbing beans are now planted out and established, but haven’t taken off yet, probably because of the cold. After patiently rebuilding the anti-squirrel (and anti rat) defences on the strawberry bed, the “pest of the month” award goes to the family of mice, who gaily waltzed through the cages, and in the space of a few short days created havoc, taking perhaps 25% of the early crop, before they were dealt with, at first patiently, and then, summarily. Runner up in the said pest award category goes to the blackfly, and their collaborator/farmers, the black ants, who have now discovered the broad beans and were hideously populating all the stem tops until I went around with the secateurs to take off the shoots and a few more inches. I’ve tried the “rubbing out” method of blackfly control – messy but organic, etc — but found that this is a perfect way to spread rust spot on the beans, so it is not really a usable technique. As in life, the ideal is to find a happy medium between all the various nuisances, and see if some kind of equilibrium can be found. Maybe this could apply to politics, too.

Looking ahead, for your diary, our next Team Service is to be on Sunday 30th June, 10.30am at St Mary’s Whitchurch, as we celebrate the opening of the newly inaugurated St Frideswide Pilgrimage route. The celebrant will be the Revd Dr James Leach, and the preacher the Team Rector. May the love of God be your guard, and your inspiration, on all the journeys you make.

Revd Canon Kevin

PS Please remember Revd John Blair in your prayers – he’s recovering at home after (planned) ankle surgery.


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