Seven Churches in South Oxfordshire

From the Rector: Tuesday 20th July

Dear friends,

Enjoy the sunshine. Enjoy the end of the school year. Don’t worry about your life. (Matt 6:25) Be content with what you have. (Phil 4:11) Don’t worry about tomorrow. (Matt 6:34) The New Testament is full of wisdom, and hope. Why not add it to your summer reading list ? If you are lucky enough to be going away, do remember your covid safety rules; fresh air, distance, hand washing. Masks indoors are no longer obligatory, but I would suggest they are advisable in confined and unventilated public spaces.

This Sunday sees Checkendon Church’s annual meeting at 9am in the church, for reports and elections. There are a number of vacancies on the church council; please register your interest with churchwardens Bruce Potter or Jane Sheppard. Also this coming Sunday our last zoom service before the August recess is a Songs of Praise at 11am, featuring music from all our contributors over the last 16 months. Details below.

Sunday Services in August are a 9am short said service in Checkendon church, or a 9.30 short service at St John’s Stoke Row. Those who’d prefer a zoom option are welcome to join with the St Leonard’s congregation at 10am. The zoom number for this service is 227 415 0550 and it stays the same each week. No passcode is required. On August 29th there is an open air Team service at St Leonard’s at 10.30am; there will be no services offered elsewhere on that day.

Worship for Sunday 25th July

9am Short said service at Checkendon Church, led by Revd Kevin Davies. Please wear your mask, and remember social distancing is still advised. No need to book.

9.30am Communion Service at St John’s Stoke Row, led by Revd Angela Linton. Please wear your mask, and remember social distancing is still advised. No need to book.

11am Songs of Praise (via zoom) with Revd Kevin. 636 645 195 and passcode 000162.  A family friendly service, with music from all our contributors of the last 16 months!

It is absolutely OK to pass these details onto friends and family, who are very welcome to join us. Other service options can be found on the Langtree Team Ministry Churches website.

You can support Checkendon church and  Stoke Row churches via dedicated and secure online card donation pages. Just click on the link. If you’ve not tried this way to make a donation, please give it a go. It is very secure.

Freedom is a matter of the Spirit.

Paul’s letter to the Galatians is an extended appeal to the church in Galatia not to surrender their new found freedom in Christ. They had converted from a legalistic form of Judaism, and some in the church were trying to compel new, non-Jewish, converts to be circumcised…before they could be baptised. No! says Paul. In Christ, all those old ways can be set aside. What matters is the conversion of the heart, by the gift of the Spirit. This sets the Christian free, and gives everyone a level playing field before God. All the old barriers, all the old hindrances and discriminations are done away with. This freedom is not however a freedom for self gratification or indulgence. It is a freedom for mutual service in love.

We could apply this message very well to our own time; our new freedoms in law are not to be seen as simply mechanisms for our own pleasures (holidays? parties? mass events?) but as giving each one of us new and better avenues for caring. Have a look at Galatians 5:1-26. And don’t forget, that in this heat, you can pop into church and cool off – try it and see!

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.

Revd Kevin



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