Candlemas Bells

Revd Liz Richardson

Well I hope this letter finds you well?! January was a really nasty winter month for those pesky winter germs, coughs, and all sorts, as well as the cold weather. As we come into February I am sure we will be encouraged by the growth of the early flowering spring bulbs and blossoms. February for us at church looks to be quite a busy month. The season of Lent is early this year beginning with Ash Wednesday on the 14th of this month and of course it is also Valentine’s Day! This year we are invited for a special service of Holy Communion with what is called the Imposition of Ashes (you get a lovely black mark on your forehead!) at St Peter’s Church Newdigate. Then we will be running a Lent Course this year called ‘Be Still’. The course is about prayer and explains how we don’t necessarily have to be physically still in order for our hearts to be still and how even in the midst of a full, busy life, we can all spend quiet time with God. I am really looking forward to doing this course! Each of the five sessions takes about an hour and includes a video session with teaching, some group discussion, plenty of tea and cake of course, and lots of take away resources. We are planning to run the course on Monday evenings and Tuesday afternoons. As I write the venue is not decided, as if possible it would be good to meet in a warm space!! Please do join us. There is a sign up sheet inside church.
We are concentrating quite a lot on prayer and how to pray at the moment. We are offering a Parish Quiet Day on prayer and if you would like more information on that please pop into church and see the leaflet or contact me. All are welcome! As well as plenty of spiritual food on offer this month in your parish churches, there will also be soup, bread and cheese to warm you up on these cold February days. These are always popular and will take place in Capel Church. The heating will be on and any donations for the lunches will be given to support the Bishop of Guildford’s Lent Appeal this year. So we begin the month with our annual Christingle service in aid of the Children’s Society which we always hold on the Sunday nearest to what is called Candlemas in the Church Calendar. It is also called the Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple, when Mary and Joseph take the infant Jesus to the temple at Jerusalem. There he is revealed as the light of the people of Israel. Hence it is good fun to make our Christingles and light them to once again remind ourselves that Jesus is the light of the world. Did you know that snowdrops are known as Candlemas Bells because they often bloom early in the year?!
With my love and prayers as ever

Post expires at 3:33pm on Thursday January 23rd, 2025