LOVE IN THE TIME OF CORONA: Day 96

Warden’s blog, stardate 23/5/2020 (Day 96)

Hello to all my friends from St Peter’s and further afield. Here we are on Day 96; Just shy of our century! Some of you may well have been able to take advantage of the “Bubble” idea which was launched recently, and if you are, I hope it has cheered you up.

Following on from our meeting in church on the 12th June our H&S officer has been very busy producing a risk assessment for opening the building for private prayer. This was put to a PCC meeting (by Zoom) on Thursday 18th, where it was agreed. Some of the staff met in church of Friday the 19th to put in place the necessary items and procedures to allow opening for Private Prayer on the 22nd, when Revd Rachel and Curate Carol will be hosting from 2pm until 3pm. The plan is that between 2pm and 3pm on weekdays the building will be open for prayer. Anyone who wishes to come down for prayer will be most welcome, but there will only be a small number of people allowed into the building at any one time, though I don’t expect the same queues as at Primark!! We respectfully ask folk not to come down just to have a chat though, as this is not allowed, and I expect that some of our regular friends will be disappointed to find that we cannot supply them with tea! Please pray for the team that have worked hard on this and for our hosts.

The building has been looked after by Danny as usual for the last two or three weeks, as well as reciting the Lord’s Prayer for us for the Sunday service, and Alan has been into the building to look after some maintenance issues. We are in the process of improving the nave lighting with new LED bulbs and uplighters. Unfortunately, the previous ones kept failing and it was really difficult to replace the units. Revd Simon M and C were adept at the job, but Alan and I were not going up that high on ladders that overhang the balcony. The new units are more expensive but have a long life and are cheap to run. I have to say the building does look well, having seen it last Friday and the work that we carried out in Lent on the working days is still evident, so thanks to those who helped. I imagine that we may well need to have another working day before we open for services, whenever that is.

It has been a difficult time lately with the deaths, at the hands of the police, of the two black men in different parts of America, the shootings in Manchester and now the tragic events in Reading. These are challenging events to come to terms with as Christians, but we must pray for all those involved, and for the Black Lives Matter movement that has arisen out of this and that some good will come out of what is a difficult situation.

A prayer for those caught up in tragedy:

O Lord our God,
source of all goodness and love,
accept the fervent prayers of your people;
in the multitude of your mercies look with compassion
upon all who turn to you for help;
for you are gracious, O lover of souls,
and to you we give glory, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
now and for ever.
Amen.

The collect for the day, remembering Ethelreda of Ely:

Eternal God, who bestowed such grace upon your servant Etheldreda
that she gave herself wholly to the life of prayer and to the service of your true religion:
grant that we, like her,
may so live our lives on earth seeking your kingdom
that by your guiding
we may be joined to the glorious fellowship of your saints;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
Amen.

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