12th May 2019

Looking forward to next week, which starts with Collective Worship at St Faith’s CE Infant & Nursery School on the work of Christian Aid & how joining hands acts as a sign of friendship & community, & by showing this friendship & support through our words & actions to our global neighbours this Christian Aid Week helps to make a difference in their lives.

Hope to see you at the concert on Thursday when I play my French Horn with the Lincolnshire Fire & Rescue Band.

Have a good week, Revd Julie

5th May 2019

On Tuesday, I was changing ‘water into wine’ as I visited St Faith’s CE Infant & Nursery school for Collective Worship which was good fun as I told the story of Jesus at the Wedding of Cana. This was followed by a mock baptism (for a doll named Rosy) when year 1 came to visit me in the church to find out about baptism.

On Wednesday, in the beautiful sunshine, I cycled to Newark & back to attend the police conference on Wellbeing in my role as volunteer police chaplain. The topic was about helping ourselves to remain healthy in a stressed environment. It was very interesting – it was looking at pro-activity rather than having to wait to react to when things go wrong.

Have a good week, God bless, Revd Julie

28th April 2019

Next week is our Christian Aid Service at St Faith’s, please do come along and support this most important cause.

I started back to work full-time this week on Thursday & my first event was the opening of the ‘Peace Garden’ at St Faith’s CE Infant & Nursery School. The Peace Garden is a lovely place for the pupils of the school to be able to go to sit quietly & to reflect on things. Not all children have a garden so to some this place is very special for them. Bishop Nicholas blessed the peace garden & the service ended with a Chinese poem which talked about peace needing to be in our hearts before we can have peace anywhere else. The choir sang & the Collective Worship Council (2 pupils from each year group) led the whole event which was held outside despite the impending rain; although it was a touch cold, we were, in fact, blessed with the sun at one point. Janet Whitehead (now the school’s Bishop’s visitor), along with the chair of governor’s & a representative from local radio were also present.

On Friday, I took the funeral for Joan Eatch, who died at the age of 93 last month. She was a long term member of our St Faith’s, particularly of the Wednesday morning service. It was sad to say goodbye, but we can rest in the knowledge of God’s promise of his eternal Kingdom. May she rest in peace and rise in glory.

Finally, today is the last day for Kate to be with us. She joined us as an observer as she considers her vocation. I want to thank her on behalf of St Faith’s as she has been much more than an observer and really helped out despite my not being around to support her. Please join me in wishing her many blessing with God’s call on her life.

Have a good week, God bless, Revd Julie

21st April 2019

Holy week, starting last Sunday with a celebration on Palm Sunday of Jesus’ ride into Jerusalem on a donkey, was followed that afternoon by a quiet service of reflection, Stations of the Cross, prayerfully considering Jesus’ journey from meeting with Pilate to the cross. Maundy Thursday marked the Last Supper & Jesus’ washing of disciples feet, followed by Good Friday’s service remembering Jesus’ time on the cross. The quiet Saturday Easter vigil being more of a rowdy Scouts sleepover as they watched a film. It’s a delight to be able to welcome the beavers, cubs & scouts into church for the sleepover. They make the fire for the Dawn service, where a new Easter candle is marked & lit reminding us of Christ as the Light of the World, they help to lead the service & cook us an English breakfast!

Holy week is about the journey of walking with Jesus through the final tragic & torturous moments of His life. Easter day is the celebration that follows as Jesus rises from the dead taking away the pain & sorrow. Jesus went through this to bring us new life, bringing us closer to God. Remember when scoffing a hot cross bun or sinking those chocolate Easter eggs, the biggest gift of all is the one that God gave us this day through the resurrection of His son. Don’t forget to share God’s love & this gift with everyone.

God bless you this Easter, Revd Julie

7th April 2019

At the beginning of the week I was in St Faith & St Martin CE Junior School for Collective Worship; the topic: If God created the world, why are there natural disasters? With chocolate buttons, a bit about free will (good/ bad decisions) and thinking about climate change – we were able to think about humanity’s impact on the world.

This week has been the final week of the school term & so the children have been learning all about Easter & celebrating it with their end of school services this week. Both schools had hot cross buns as refreshments afterwards. Thanks to everyone who helped with the buttering of the buns & with the refreshments themselves.

Last week we had a collection at our Sunday service for the DEC disaster fund for those affected by Cyclone Idai. Thank you to everyone who contributed.

Looking forward, next Sunday is Palm Sunday so there will be a procession from the church hall at 10.30am, please do join us if you can. The service itself will start in the church about 10.35am for those who want to go straight there.

In the afternoon, the final Lent prayer session will be Stations of the Cross. Stations of the Cross is about prayerfully following the last steps Jesus took to the Cross through a series of stations set round the church; we embark on a journey praying at each station.

Don’t forget the ‘History of the West End‘exhibition either at the university of Lincoln next Saturday or St Faith’s church hall on the Sunday.

Have a good week, God bless, Revd Julie

31st March 2019

Just a brief note to remind you that we will be collecting for the Disaster appeal following the Cyclone Idai in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe today. The DEC only put together an appeal in times of true crisis: Cyclone Idai killed at least 750 people with 2.5 million in need of help of water, food, shelter with the risk of disease, especially cholera. The collection will be on the table at the back of church. God bless, Reverend Julie

24th March 2019

On Tuesday it was the Diocesan Headteachers/governors conference organised for church schools. The conference had a specific focus looking at the effect poverty has on pupils as well an update on the new RE curriculum & Ofsted/ SIAMS frameworks. ON Wednesday, I welcomed the Verger’s Guild to St Faith’s, with a potted history of St Faith’s. Thanks to Paul Paynton who arranged this.

I don’t know about you, but I have been moved by the devastation of Cyclone IDAI and especially the images that show the intense flooding and suffering of the people of Mozambique. The Disasters Emergency Committee is an organisation that only comes together at times of disaster bringing together 14 leading UK charities & local agencies, has launched an appeal to help victims in Mozambique, Malawi & Zimbabwe. They strive to provide effective & swift humanitarian assistance; alongside medication, shelter, & food is urgently needed.

Next week there will be a collection in aid of the appeal.

Please pray for them this week, God bless, Revd Julie

17 March 2019

This week, I have been into both schools: St Faith’s Infant for Collective worship on Tuesday on Jesus’ parable about the sower, followed by a visit to St Faith & St Martin CE Juniors who had an Ofsted inspection. As one of the governors, I was asked to attend an interview with the inspector as part of the representation of the work of the governors at the school. Governance is an important of how schools are run & the governors work together with the Head teacher to achieve the best for every pupil.

I attended a course later in the week on Collective Worship as part of the Joy Foundation’s work with the Christianity deanery i.e. the church’ deanery. This course was to help leaders of Collective Worship in the schools to improve our skills. Their next course is on story telling which I am hoping to attend too.

I undertook the first part of my safeguarding training. Safeguarding children & vulnerable adults is everyone’s responsibility & the parish takes safeguarding very seriously. I invite you to be familiar with the noticeboards in church or the hall which tell you what to do if you have any concerns…

Lastly, a word about finances of the church bearing in the mid to be able to cover the church’s expenses as well as trying to pay at least 50% our parish share. This is reminder that we have introduced the ‘Parish Giving Scheme’ as a regular way of donating to St Faith’s. If you have not seen any information about this, then there are packs at the back of church that covers this. If you have had a pack & not read yet, may I encourage you to do so. If you have any questions, please talk to Pete Hill or myself.

God bless. Revd Julie

10th March 2019

First of all a massive thank you for everyone who helped out at the pancake party on Shrove Tuesday because it was massively busy. It was a huge success – it was full on for an hour and a half. Thanks initially to Sue as she must have cooked about 90 pancakes; thanks to Natasha, Helen D, Bob and Jake who helped in the kitchen & to the Mothers’ Union: Caroline, Gill & Jill as they handled the craft activities. It was such a success this year as the parents of the beavers stayed & joined in this year, making it a great family occasion. I did my bit in finishing off the pancakes: about 7 in total!!

This followed on from another fantastic event which was last Sunday’s family service where Bishop Nicholas Chamberlain blessed the flags of our scout group: 7th Scouts, Lincoln. The church was full of beavers, cubs, scouts, explorers, leaders and parents in addition to our own congregation all designing flags. By working together, these flags were then put together to form 2 large flags that had contributions right from the very young to the (very) old. Just fab!! The scout group are next with us in church for their sleepover & the Easter Dawn service (6.30am start) with breakfast – not to be missed; it’s very moving as the young people help to lead this most important service of the year.

Lastly, I am running a series of Sunday evening sessions looking at prayer, specifically prayer that involves silence. Each session will roughly involve ‘ an introduction to the prayer/ type of prayer being looked at, a period of silence, followed by a short liturgy (closing prayers). It will start at 5pm & finish no later than 5.45pm. This week, I will look at how the practice of Lectio Divina can help in our prayer.

God bless, Revd Julie

3rd March 2019

Firstly I would like to welcome all beavers, cub, scouts and their leaders and supporters of 7th Lincoln Scout group. It is such a privilege to welcome you all for a service of blessing your flags today. This service is about celebrating all that is good about scouting, working together whilst reminding us of the ideals set out in their Promise & Law.

I would also like to welcome too, Bishop Nicholas (Bishop of Grantham), who will be providing us with our talk this morning and blessing the flags for us. This is the 1st time Bishop Nicholas visits us at St Faith’s & we are really pleased he agreed to come and be involved in this very special service today.

Thank you to youth club members for planting the bulbs which are now flowering by the church door & to the church member who donated the money to buy them. Thanks also to the beavers who joined in to make the garden look lovely by planting some bulbs in the garden too. Please do admire them on your way out as the bulbs are now growing.

Lent begins this week with the ‘Pancake Party’ on Shrove Tues (5.30pm-7pm). Come along & join us in the hall with the beavers, as we tuck into pancakes with different toppings to go with them (my favourite is lemon & sugar, although Nutella with banana is a close 2nd). There will be a craft too! Following on from the party where we ‘traditionally’ empty the cupboard of luxury things for Lent, we mark the start of Lent with our Ash Wednesday services (6 Mar: 9.15am & 7.30pm). If you are a regular, you should have received a Lent reflection book on ‘The Beatitudes’; if you are not a regular & would like one, please ask. Our Lent course begins on Wed 13 March for 5 weeks based on the film ‘I Daniel Blake’ (books available from Helen D). Then, all you need to do know is decide on what you give up &/or take on for Lent! God bless you, Revd Julie