Seven Churches in South Oxfordshire

From the Rector: Tuesday 16th January 2024

Life on Fire

Dear friends,

Spare a thought for the people of the Reykjanes peninsular in Iceland, as the anticipated eruption has finally come to pass. You may be wondering why some volcanos are cone shaped, some explode, some have loads of gas, and some, like in this part of Iceland, just seem to crack open the earth in great fissures. The answers are quite complicated, but one significant factor is the chemical composition of the lava (molten rock) which determines whether it is sticky or runny. The former lava type can produce the (dangerous) explosive volcanoes, while the latter gives rise to the “dribbling” or “shield” types. The risk from this latter type is that the lava will simply creep for miles, consuming everything in its path. Again, full marks to the Icelandic civil protection services, in that, whilst property is being lost, no lives have been. The awesome power of the earth beneath our feet can be seen in this locally produced newsfeed.

Meanwhile, men do their best to turn the earth to ash by themselves, with hostile intent. “Privateers” are once again on the high seas, being used as projections of power by aggressive nation states, and these latter are turning social media into a battleground. Sometimes it seems as if humanity is as helpless in the face of these global conflicts as the people of Grindavik are before the forces of nature. We just can’t help ourselves.

Worship Services for Sunday 21st January

9.30am Informal Worship at St John’s Stoke Row with Mr Peter Ferguson

11am Family Service at St Peter and Paul, Checkendon with Canon Kevin Davies. An informal service, with the music group, and coffee.

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

Regular Meetings

In the face of so much uncertainty in our world, one thing we can do is to meet together and get to know one another. In addition to our Sunday worship, there is a weekly ladies Bible Study group at Checkendon on a Tuesday afternoon, and, for those who have lost a loved one, a monthly Bereavement Cafe at Woodcote. The contacts for these groups are a) Liz Lowth (683737) and b) Sue Endacott (01189843858).  If you are interested in eco-friendly flower arranging for the church at Checkendon, or learning how to do so, please get in touch with Jane Falinska (680307). To try your hand at church bell ringing, please contact David Dickens (681741). If you’d like to be involved in the care of the fabric of our wonderful churches, or the churchyards, please contact Mike Lee (Stoke Row –  681008) or Jon Hayes (Checkendon – 680346). And, lastly, St Mary’s Ipsden are hosting a “warm Wednesday” tomorrow morning in the village hall (at Ipsden) from 10.30am. Do drop in for a free coffee and a chat. Its might be a little chilly outside, but there is warmth to be found in our communities.

with every blessing to you all.

Revd Kevin Davies


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