From Father Richard's Desk

My Dear Brothers & Sisters,

The wonderful parable of the Good Samaritan is the subject of today’s gospel. I remember asking someone what the message of the parable was. The message, they said, was that we should love everyone. I suppose in the same way that Jesus came for the salvation of all.

As human beings we cannot love ‘all’ in the same way as God. We can only love some ONE. The Good Samaritan, God become man – has to express his love for mankind in as limited a way as we do. He chose to be compassionate to some ONE. Jesus came as saviour of the world, yet his earthly mission was limited to the Jews….In Christ we are called to express our love of God in a limited way. A further twist – by loving another, we make of them our brother, our sister our friend, our neighbour.

Fr. Richard
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From Father Richard's Desk

My Dear Brothers & Sisters,

There is a saying that Christians should be
IN this world, but not OF this world. A Christian outlook is different from one who does not have CHRIST in their life. St. Paul talks about being crucified to the world in order to live for Christ. The ‘WORLD’ is a way of living without reference to God or God’s Laws. It is a way of living that seeks to ignore its creator and decide for itself what is right and what is wrong: the ORIGINAL SIN OF ADAM.

To be crucified to the world, is to live in partnership with Christ in building heaven on earth.

Thy Kingdom come
Thy will be done
On earth as it is in heaven

Have a good week.
Fr. Richard

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Choose Jesus

My Dear Brothers & Sisters,

Choices, choices! So many choices! It sounds wonderful to have lots of options, lots of choices in life, but a multiplicity of choices can be unnerving and can render us indecisive. We know that in making certain choices we are saying no to other options. You may want it all, but in reality you cannot have it all.

If you choose Jesus as an option, He cannot lead you astray. Obedience to Him will never be to the detriment of those you love. That’s the real message of the gospel. TRUST ME. TRUST HIM.

Have a good week.
Fr. Richard
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From Father Richard's Desk

My Dear Brothers & Sisters,

Over a lifetime we accumulate so many things. People’s attics are full of goods that may come in useful one day.

As the goods accumulate and start taking up space needlessly the ‘goods’ that we kept for the rainy day become the ‘bads’. The ‘bads’ take ownership of space that ought not to be occupied or could be used more usefully.

It is not a bad test of renunciation to go through your goods and get rid of those ‘goods’ that have become ‘bads’.

Our spiritual lives are often reflected in our more visible daily lives. Hanging on to things that are no longer useful, or to grudges, or ways of doing things simply because we’ve always done them, is not a sign of renunciation, of traveling light, of letting the Lord dispose of us as He will.

Renunciation takes many forms. Clear out the material rubbish and then get started on the emotional and spiritual - the sacrament of reconciliation awaits.

Have a good week.
Fr. Richard
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Could it have been Royal Ascot @ St Peter's?

The scene was set for an evening of racing fun here at St Peter's Church on the longest day of 2013..

Some had risen early to clear the church and set out the course, tables and chairs and tables. Others had spent most of the day selecting their costumes for this most prestigious event in the parishes social calendar... The ladies arrived resplendent in their crafted headgear of varying shades, shapes and appearances,  Anne E however missed the mark – according to Fr Richard – and took on a "francophilian" look that might have been better appreciated at the Chasse-de-Paris. But that might have been influenced by the fact that she was given the task to procure the wine, soft drinks and cheese – which I have to say the wine was very well received be all.

The men on the other-hand had resisted the temptation to go that extra mile and adorn a sparkling waistcoat, that is with one exception that is and that will become evident later...


The volunteer bookmakers/tellers for the evening (the DiMarco Mafia) were ready and waiting to fleece all those who attend, whilst Miss Egan did her part in fiddling the odds..

The Chief Steward Meg took the floor to explain the rules... 

The racing programme involved six preliminary races where each winner would be invited back to the grand finale where the winners' winner would be decided, the betting rules and application of odds were explained and rules regarding the throwing the die for each race were explained...

There had to be money involved because everyone gave their full attention, see the photos below... Well that is apart from Lyn, that is, who relived from her normal bar duty on these events, was "regally" savouring every moment.




And so to the first race where experienced jockeys took to their steeds.... These were in reverse order left to right "nice waistcoat" Nick on No 6, Babs's friend??? on No 5, "distracted Arthur" on No 4, "pockets" Paul No 3, Hair-do-Babs on No 2 and Jolly-hat Jane on No 1...

Old hands winner Jane on No1

We missed a photo opportunity for the novices race or the old Greys... But the winners were Annette on No 6 and  Megs mum on No 4.

The next race was the Apprentice race where huddled together were the jockies  James (the only apprentice of the evening) Fiona on five, Carolyn on 4, "nice waistcoat Nick" on 3,  the other Nick on No2, and all on his lonesome John on No1.

Apprentice Winner Carolyn on No 4

The little fillies race with Helen on No6, Chris on No5, Sue on No4, Catherine No3, Julia on No 2 and ???? on No 1. After an extremely eventful race, seeing two of the contenders fall at the last furlong the four remaining horses shared the last two places and the spectators wondered will we ever see this race end.... However after what seemed like an age Helen having stalled for a while,  eventually won through by a neck to win the fillies race....
Winner Helen on No 6 very close race won by just a neck from the rest of the field.


Fr Richard judges the ladies' hats... A very difficult task with some wonderful entries...


But there had to be a winner and that was Jane's masterpiece bonnet....
Anne awards a bottle of rose - without even an hint of envy... or for that her beret

The next race Stallions with Niel on No6, Phil on No5, Paul on No4, Nick on No3, James on 2 and Fr Richard on No 1...
won by pockets Paul on No 4
Not to be outdone, the judging of the men's jazziest waistcoat was awarded to  Nick...

Seen here styling front and rear and flaunting his prize!

And so to the winners' winner race which this time was across various hurdles. The contestants Helen No6, Annette No5, Carolyn No4, Megs Mum No 3, Paul No 2, and Jane No1.  This race was hotly contested with the lead passing backward and forward at times, however a convincing lead was taken by Jane on horse No 1 flying to the front only to fall with in a furlong of the finish, even before Meg's got out of the starting blocks... Jane's early departure left the race wide open for the other jockeys following well behind.  Annette became so enthusiastic about the race that she managed to jump the hurdles without her horse.
It wasn't too long before Megs-mum exited the starting blocks with the sound of great cheers around the course, but she rolled a one and those cheers changed to laughter.  Not to be out done the dice continued to select No1 and she soon caught up with the field, taking the hurdles with easy steps....

The tension was almost nail-biting, initially favouring Carolyn on No 4 who shot to the front, but then she got held up on the miss a turn square on the final furlong. The lead passed to and fro and the field all caught up again. This all added to the excitement, but not to be put off Carolyn eventually cast the final four to take her to victory...


The evening finished with the raffle with what seemed to be an never ending supply of presents. A super fun filled evening bringing in some £458 (before the costs of wine and cheese). The proceeds will go toward the new parish Kitchen.

Many thanks to Clare, Meg, Anne E, the bookmakers and all who helped in whatever way to make this a great value fun evening.


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Polyphonica Concert

There will be a concert on 5 July by the Polyphonica Recorder Trio, which promises to be exciting. You can see the fixture on their website.

Chris
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Minister Lists

I've put up the new Minister lists. Let me know if you have any difficulty reading or accessing the document.

Chris
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From Father Richard's desk – Pentecost

My Dear Brothers & Sisters,

Isaac of Stella, a Cistercian monk and writer, when speaking to his monks asked “Often, when we go to pray in a chapel or sacred place, we seem not to find the consolation of God’s presence that we are seeking; and yet when we go about the business of the day, we can come across an experience of God in the people we meet.” He says, “A bit like Mary and the women who go in search of Jesus at the tomb, and do not find him….and coming away encounter him in the garden.”

Pentecost is the feast when we celebrate the gifts of the Holy Spirit to the people of God and the birthday of the church. The Holy Spirit helps us to recognise Christ in the hum drum of our lives and guarantees that however or whenever we search for the Lord, He will in His own time reveal Himself. Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
Fr. Richard
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Parish Council Meeting on Thursday

The Parish Council will meet on Thursday 2 May 2013, this week. Here are the Minutes from the last meeting and the Agenda for the next.

Chris

PCC Minutes 31.01.13
PCC Agenda 02.05.13
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Latest news from Churches Together in Biggleswade...

Churches Together in Biggleswade held a meeting on Tuesday 23rd April.

Forthcoming events and requests for volunteers are below.

* Monthly prayer meetings (regular church meetings to which members of other Churches in Biggleswade are especially invited).
        - 22nd May, 7:30 pm, Pentecostal Church.
        - June, New Life Church (details tba).
        - 6th July, 10am, St. Andrew's.

* Christian Aid Week, 12th-18th May 2013.
        - Joint Service, Sunday 12th May, 6pm, St. Andrew's.
        - Street collections - if anyone is interested in helping out, please contact Neil Spencer at neilhspencer@gmail.com or 07910 211824.
        - Collecting outside Asda, Saturday 18th May - St. Peter's is responsible for covering the 12pm to 1:30pm time slot. If you can help, please contact Neil Spencer at neilhspencer@gmail.com or 07910 211824.

* Biggleswade Carnival, Saturday 22nd June 2013. Churches Together in Biggleswade will be having a float and an organising commitee will meet on Thursday 2nd May, 7:30pm at Biggleswade Baptist Church. If anyone would like to represent St. Peter's at this meeting or future meetings arranging the float, please contact Neil Spencer at neilhspencer@gmail.com or 07910 211824.
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