This Month's Message

Harpley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Life is my Message." Mahatma Gandhi

Reverend Judith Pollard
Team Vicar                                                                               

 

 

 

 

OCTOBER  2017.

No one could fail to be moved by the floral tributes to Diana, Princess of Wales attached recently to the gates of Sandringham marking the 20th anniversary of her tragic death, nor the quiet dignity of Harry and William as they spoke of their mother and her legacy. The national outpouring of grief seems undiminished by the passing years.  The spirit of Diana lives on in her children and grand-children - and in the continuing work of the charities she founded or with which she was associated: charities for the homeless, those suffering with HIV/Aids, victims of war and notably the clearing and future banning of landmines, to name but a few. We honour her memory and her legacy.

At the end of this month we celebrate the Christian festivals of All Saints and All Souls, often linked together in popular understanding as Hallowe’en – which actually means the day before or ‘eve’ of the Feast of All Hallows. The word ‘hallow’ is another word for holy, which can refer to a person - a saint! –or to an object, as in the last Harry Potter book.   In the Lord’s Prayer we say: “Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed by your name.”  

Together with Remembrance Sunday these two days form the short season of Remembrance-tide. Hallowe’en is a well-embedded date in the calendar, especially with local farmers who grow the magnificent pumpkins for us to create pumpkin lanterns; and to find ever more ingenious ways of cooking the delicious orange flesh in soups and pies. (Trick or treat was imported from America.)

This time of year is also known as a ‘thin place’, where earth and heaven come together more closely than usual - and this may have given rise to some of the myths and legends about “ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggetty beasties” which abound in the tradition and folk-lore of the British Isles. 

On the Feast of All Hallows we remember all Christian saints and martyrs, both well-known and   less known; on the following day, All Souls, we give thanks for the lives of people we have known personally: those who gave us life, who nurtured us in faith or reflected for us in some way the love of Jesus Christ: the faithful departed, whom we mourn. St. Paul calls all Christian believers ‘saints’ -and I would agree with him.

There will be special services in our group of churches where we will be commemorating our loved ones who have gone before us;  and remembering the families and friends of those whose funerals have been conducted during the past year. In recognition of this we light candles: this earthly life is not the end, we have the hope offered to us through Jesus Christ, the promise of eternal life, by the grace of God.

In conclusion, it just remains for me to say: “Go forth into the world in peace: be of good courage, hold fast to that which is good; render to no one evil for evil, support the weak, help the afflicted, honour everyone, love and serve the Lord.  Amen. “  

With my continuing prayers,

Reverend Judith.


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