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St Marks Heyside
March 2018

Thursday 1st March 2018 19:30Stations of the Cross in St Marks - CANCELLED
Friday 2nd March 2018 14:00Womens World Day of Prayer Service - CANCELLED
Sunday 4th March 2018 09:00Thought for todayJames' introduction to todays readings.

Introduction



In today’s Gospel we hear John's account of Jesus 'cleansing' the Temple in Jerusalem. He saw the money changers, and then the buying and selling of animals for sacrifice a corruption of true worship. The trading cheated and exploited the poor and made a few people unjustly rich. Jesus action infuriated the religious leaders, who held Temple worship 'close to their hearts'. That blinded them to the new and full way that God was at work in Jesus. This action, and many others threatened the leaders' power and status. To protect themselves they conspired to break the sixth commandment,'You shall not murder'.



Reflections



It is easy to condemn the religious leaders of Jesus' day. But can you identify with them and feel empathy for them? Here are some thoughts to wrestle with this Lent.

We all hold people and things 'close to our hearts' But ask, do they make me deaf, blind and closed to the presence and way of Christ?

If we are honest, we all act in our own self interest to a greater or lesser degree. Jesus on the cross sets us an extremely hard example to follow - self giving, loving action for the good of all. Do I, could i follow this way?

Jesus' teachings and behaviours ask us to make changes in our actions, thoughts and words. The religious leaders were not prepared to change. There will be changes we have definitely no wish or intention to make. But Jesus always stands before us gently calling us to follow him. Can I soften my heart and grow in my desire to embrace and strive to follow his whole way?

10:30Sunday Morning Eucharist at 1030am
Tuesday 6th March 2018 09:30Morning Communion Service
19:30Lent Course - Les MiserablesIn St Mark's Chapel

A brief overview.
Dear Friends

I have recently watched the DVD of Les Miserables, to make preparation for our forthcoming Lent Course at St Mark’s. Itis a fine film with characters, setting and a story thatraise many important questions about life.

Like the rest of us, the charactersand the society of which they are flawed:corrupt with greed, dishonesty, apathy, oppression and injustice.Many struggle in abject poverty bringing the worst of humanity but also the best. Questions about the nature of grace, mercy, repentance, forgiveness and redemption are opened for serious thought. The need fora society of justice and mercy, the rule of law, equality of opportunity, and social care for all to thrive is presented, but no definite answer offered. We are left with much to think about that will stimulate worthwhile conversation to bring a deeper faith, more whole people, a more God centred society.

The two main characters help us to grasp the importance and difficulties of finding possible answers to the issues raised.

Javert’s life’s work is to bring bad people to justice and punishment; there should be no mercy, forgiveness and new starts for anyone. Javerthas never broken the law, and sees no need for him to be forgiven. Jean once stole a loaf of bread to feed his hungry family. Javert is determined that Valjean must go back to prison for life. Jesus broke the law of his people, in order to keep a higher law, the law of love. He gave his life to bring mercy, forgiveness and a fresh starts to all who repent, whatever their sin, and however frequent it is. Many people, like Javert struggle with Jesus’ way, including Christians. It is easy for us to condemn others, and be puffed up with pride if self righteousness. We can hear these views expressed every day, read them in papers and if were are honest, find them in our own hearts in passing judgement on others. Javert is never really alive and free, imprisoned by his lack of love and self knowledge.

Valjean feels he has done wrong and can never be fully forgiven. He believes his life must be spent doing good, in response tothe kindness and mercy the Bishop gave him, but remains beset by guilt, the debt can never be repaid. He fails to see his goodness.He too is imprisoned by guilt and his inability to receive forgiveness and the fullness of love. There is something of Valjean in us all, find forgiveness hard to receive, and blind to the good in us.

Both Javert and Valjean ideas show some of distortions of Christianity, from medieval Christians who continually punished themselves for their sins as Valjean, to 21st century fundamentalists whose rigid moral teaching condemns others to eternal damnation. One final thought, does Valjean finally accept forgiveness and redemption as he dies? He is beckoned by the bishop and Fantine, to whom Valjean had been so kind, and as she died, promised to care for herdaughter.

As Lent progresses, and Holy Week draws near, I pray that in our internal and external conversations, and in all our Lenten activities, God will lead us deeper into the depths of his mercy, forgiveness and fresh starts, now and for eternity. This is a free, unearned gift he offers all, even those who have committed the most dreadful of crimes.

May God feed and grow you this Lent and fill you with Easter joy and life

James
Wednesday 7th March 2018 13:00Jelly Tots - Mums and Toddlers groupEvery Wednesday - everyone welcome
Thursday 8th March 2018 19:30Stations of the Cross in St Marks
Friday 9th March 2018 00:00Experience Easter with Blackshaw Lane School Year 3
Sunday 11th March 2018 Mothering Sunday
09:00Thought for todayJames' introduction to todays readings.

Introduction

What are the qualities of true human beauty? Looks, figure, strength, speed, elegance, slimness, muscles???
St Paul lists some rather different ones in our first reading: ‘compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, patience, supportiveness,forgiving, loving, peaceful,thankful, wise, joyful, serving God in evening that they do.

All of these qualities are difficult, costly, and take out time, talents, effort, and sometimes bring hurt, in body and mind. Our Gospel Reading makes this clear in Simeon’s words to Mary, ‘a sword shall pierce you own heart too’. Her underlying beauty was displayed in her mothering of Jesus, its costliness in all that happened to Jesus, the grief of a mother.

Reflection
Just how beautiful are we in these eternal qualities? Be thankful for the opportunities in your life that you have been given to mother others. Ask, what am I doing this Lent to become more beautiful and grow in my mothering? Ask, how can I support others who are suffering from the costliness of mothering, people near and far, known and unknown?

Be thankful for the people who have mothered you. Reflect on how costly that would have been for them. Think too, and bethankful for those who mother you now. Be thankful for the mothering you have received from others.
10:20CLCGB Parade Sunday
10:30Sunday Morning Eucharist at 1030am
Tuesday 13th March 2018 09:30Morning Communion Service
19:30Lent Course - Les MiserablesIn St Mark's Chapel

A brief overview.
Dear Friends

I have recently watched the DVD of Les Miserables, to make preparation for our forthcoming Lent Course at St Mark’s. Itis a fine film with characters, setting and a story thatraise many important questions about life.

Like the rest of us, the charactersand the society of which they are flawed:corrupt with greed, dishonesty, apathy, oppression and injustice.Many struggle in abject poverty bringing the worst of humanity but also the best. Questions about the nature of grace, mercy, repentance, forgiveness and redemption are opened for serious thought. The need fora society of justice and mercy, the rule of law, equality of opportunity, and social care for all to thrive is presented, but no definite answer offered. We are left with much to think about that will stimulate worthwhile conversation to bring a deeper faith, more whole people, a more God centred society.

The two main characters help us to grasp the importance and difficulties of finding possible answers to the issues raised.

Javert’s life’s work is to bring bad people to justice and punishment; there should be no mercy, forgiveness and new starts for anyone. Javerthas never broken the law, and sees no need for him to be forgiven. Jean once stole a loaf of bread to feed his hungry family. Javert is determined that Valjean must go back to prison for life. Jesus broke the law of his people, in order to keep a higher law, the law of love. He gave his life to bring mercy, forgiveness and a fresh starts to all who repent, whatever their sin, and however frequent it is. Many people, like Javert struggle with Jesus’ way, including Christians. It is easy for us to condemn others, and be puffed up with pride if self righteousness. We can hear these views expressed every day, read them in papers and if were are honest, find them in our own hearts in passing judgement on others. Javert is never really alive and free, imprisoned by his lack of love and self knowledge.

Valjean feels he has done wrong and can never be fully forgiven. He believes his life must be spent doing good, in response tothe kindness and mercy the Bishop gave him, but remains beset by guilt, the debt can never be repaid. He fails to see his goodness.He too is imprisoned by guilt and his inability to receive forgiveness and the fullness of love. There is something of Valjean in us all, find forgiveness hard to receive, and blind to the good in us.

Both Javert and Valjean ideas show some of distortions of Christianity, from medieval Christians who continually punished themselves for their sins as Valjean, to 21st century fundamentalists whose rigid moral teaching condemns others to eternal damnation. One final thought, does Valjean finally accept forgiveness and redemption as he dies? He is beckoned by the bishop and Fantine, to whom Valjean had been so kind, and as she died, promised to care for herdaughter.

As Lent progresses, and Holy Week draws near, I pray that in our internal and external conversations, and in all our Lenten activities, God will lead us deeper into the depths of his mercy, forgiveness and fresh starts, now and for eternity. This is a free, unearned gift he offers all, even those who have committed the most dreadful of crimes.

May God feed and grow you this Lent and fill you with Easter joy and life

James
Wednesday 14th March 2018 13:00Jelly Tots - Mums and Toddlers groupEvery Wednesday - everyone welcome
Thursday 15th March 2018 19:30Stations of the Cross in St Marks
Sunday 18th March 2018 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
09:00Thought for todayJames' introduction to todays readings.

Introduction

On the face of it Christianity is not attractive. In worldly terms, it offers nothing, and asks for all.

In our Gospel Reading we hear Jesus wrestling with the cost to him – the total pain and depths of suffering that he must go through. He calls all of us to follow that same path, with no apparent reward. In the letter to the Hebrews we hear Jesus’ Way reiterated - submission, sacrifice, suffering…

And to add to its apparent unattractiveness, Christians have chosen the cross, an instrument of tortuous execution, to be our most important symbol.

BUT in our first reading the prophet Jeremiah foresees a time when humanity is freed to be whole, complete, real people, to live out what it means to be made in the image and likeness of God; Jesus' way of sacrificial love is the way to life and fruitfulness.

Reflection

Ask yourself:

What do I find attractive about the way of Christ, the way of the cross?

What do I find unattractive about the way of Christ, the way of the cross?

Am I giving my life back to God like a seed buried in the soil to die and bear fruit that will last?

Look back over this past week, give thanks for the love filled sacrifices you have made and thank God for those opportunities to follow Christ’s way.

How would you explain to another why you choose to follow this way?

10:30Sunday Morning Eucharist at 1030am
Monday 19th March 2018 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
Tuesday 20th March 2018 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
09:30Morning Communion Service
19:30Lent Course - Les MiserablesIn St Mark's Chapel

A brief overview.
Dear Friends

I have recently watched the DVD of Les Miserables, to make preparation for our forthcoming Lent Course at St Mark’s. Itis a fine film with characters, setting and a story thatraise many important questions about life.

Like the rest of us, the charactersand the society of which they are flawed:corrupt with greed, dishonesty, apathy, oppression and injustice.Many struggle in abject poverty bringing the worst of humanity but also the best. Questions about the nature of grace, mercy, repentance, forgiveness and redemption are opened for serious thought. The need fora society of justice and mercy, the rule of law, equality of opportunity, and social care for all to thrive is presented, but no definite answer offered. We are left with much to think about that will stimulate worthwhile conversation to bring a deeper faith, more whole people, a more God centred society.

The two main characters help us to grasp the importance and difficulties of finding possible answers to the issues raised.

Javert’s life’s work is to bring bad people to justice and punishment; there should be no mercy, forgiveness and new starts for anyone. Javerthas never broken the law, and sees no need for him to be forgiven. Jean once stole a loaf of bread to feed his hungry family. Javert is determined that Valjean must go back to prison for life. Jesus broke the law of his people, in order to keep a higher law, the law of love. He gave his life to bring mercy, forgiveness and a fresh starts to all who repent, whatever their sin, and however frequent it is. Many people, like Javert struggle with Jesus’ way, including Christians. It is easy for us to condemn others, and be puffed up with pride if self righteousness. We can hear these views expressed every day, read them in papers and if were are honest, find them in our own hearts in passing judgement on others. Javert is never really alive and free, imprisoned by his lack of love and self knowledge.

Valjean feels he has done wrong and can never be fully forgiven. He believes his life must be spent doing good, in response tothe kindness and mercy the Bishop gave him, but remains beset by guilt, the debt can never be repaid. He fails to see his goodness.He too is imprisoned by guilt and his inability to receive forgiveness and the fullness of love. There is something of Valjean in us all, find forgiveness hard to receive, and blind to the good in us.

Both Javert and Valjean ideas show some of distortions of Christianity, from medieval Christians who continually punished themselves for their sins as Valjean, to 21st century fundamentalists whose rigid moral teaching condemns others to eternal damnation. One final thought, does Valjean finally accept forgiveness and redemption as he dies? He is beckoned by the bishop and Fantine, to whom Valjean had been so kind, and as she died, promised to care for herdaughter.

As Lent progresses, and Holy Week draws near, I pray that in our internal and external conversations, and in all our Lenten activities, God will lead us deeper into the depths of his mercy, forgiveness and fresh starts, now and for eternity. This is a free, unearned gift he offers all, even those who have committed the most dreadful of crimes.

May God feed and grow you this Lent and fill you with Easter joy and life

James
Wednesday 21st March 2018 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
13:00Jelly Tots - Mums and Toddlers groupEvery Wednesday - everyone welcome
Thursday 22nd March 2018 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
19:30Stations of the Cross in St Marks
Friday 23rd March 2018 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
18:00Brigade Closes for Easter
Saturday 24th March 2018 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
Sunday 25th March 2018 Palm Sunday
 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
09:00Thought for todayJames' introduction to todays readings.

Introduction
Today marks the start of our annual journey with Jesus through the most important week ever. Our service starts with the commemoration of his entrance into Jerusalem on a donkey, by which Jesus proclaimed himself as servant King of love and peace.
Later we will hear Mark’s account of Jesus Passion and death. In the story we hear how Jesus longs longs to be released from the cross, yet his desire to submit to his Father’s will. It is a terrifying ordeal where he faces unfashionable physical and emotional pain, even theutter abandonment by friends and Heavenly Father. Within the utter darkness are glimmers of light, in his loyal friends and in his loving commitment to his Father and all creation. May our service today move us and deepen our love for, and submission to Jesus.

Communion Reflection to use during the Administration of Holy Communion or/and at home.

Think about the disappointments that Jesus faced:
He came to his own and his own knew him not;
friends who betrayed, denied, and ran away from him;
People filled with mocking, hatred, venom, who treated him as a thing, expendable;
And in such a barrage of hate, his total love of God for all…
Feel the warmth, the life of such love in our singing and prayers, our listening and hearing, our handshakes and fellowship, our eating of bread and drinking of wine.
Pray that we, the whole Church will be filled with that same love for his world and all that he has made.
10:30Sunday Morning Eucharist at 1030am
13:30Family Yoga
16:00Messy Church
Monday 26th March 2018 Holy Week
 This was our Experience Easter displays See the pictures from when Blackshaw Lane School, Year 3 students visited Church for an Easter Experience.
19:30Holy Week Eucharist at St Anne's
Tuesday 27th March 2018 Holy Week
09:30Morning Communion Service
19:30Lent Course - Les MiserablesIn St Mark's Chapel

A brief overview.
Dear Friends

I have recently watched the DVD of Les Miserables, to make preparation for our forthcoming Lent Course at St Mark’s. Itis a fine film with characters, setting and a story thatraise many important questions about life.

Like the rest of us, the charactersand the society of which they are flawed:corrupt with greed, dishonesty, apathy, oppression and injustice.Many struggle in abject poverty bringing the worst of humanity but also the best. Questions about the nature of grace, mercy, repentance, forgiveness and redemption are opened for serious thought. The need fora society of justice and mercy, the rule of law, equality of opportunity, and social care for all to thrive is presented, but no definite answer offered. We are left with much to think about that will stimulate worthwhile conversation to bring a deeper faith, more whole people, a more God centred society.

The two main characters help us to grasp the importance and difficulties of finding possible answers to the issues raised.

Javert’s life’s work is to bring bad people to justice and punishment; there should be no mercy, forgiveness and new starts for anyone. Javerthas never broken the law, and sees no need for him to be forgiven. Jean once stole a loaf of bread to feed his hungry family. Javert is determined that Valjean must go back to prison for life. Jesus broke the law of his people, in order to keep a higher law, the law of love. He gave his life to bring mercy, forgiveness and a fresh starts to all who repent, whatever their sin, and however frequent it is. Many people, like Javert struggle with Jesus’ way, including Christians. It is easy for us to condemn others, and be puffed up with pride if self righteousness. We can hear these views expressed every day, read them in papers and if were are honest, find them in our own hearts in passing judgement on others. Javert is never really alive and free, imprisoned by his lack of love and self knowledge.

Valjean feels he has done wrong and can never be fully forgiven. He believes his life must be spent doing good, in response tothe kindness and mercy the Bishop gave him, but remains beset by guilt, the debt can never be repaid. He fails to see his goodness.He too is imprisoned by guilt and his inability to receive forgiveness and the fullness of love. There is something of Valjean in us all, find forgiveness hard to receive, and blind to the good in us.

Both Javert and Valjean ideas show some of distortions of Christianity, from medieval Christians who continually punished themselves for their sins as Valjean, to 21st century fundamentalists whose rigid moral teaching condemns others to eternal damnation. One final thought, does Valjean finally accept forgiveness and redemption as he dies? He is beckoned by the bishop and Fantine, to whom Valjean had been so kind, and as she died, promised to care for herdaughter.

As Lent progresses, and Holy Week draws near, I pray that in our internal and external conversations, and in all our Lenten activities, God will lead us deeper into the depths of his mercy, forgiveness and fresh starts, now and for eternity. This is a free, unearned gift he offers all, even those who have committed the most dreadful of crimes.

May God feed and grow you this Lent and fill you with Easter joy and life

James
Wednesday 28th March 2018 Holy Week
13:00Jelly Tots - Mums and Toddlers groupEvery Wednesday - everyone welcome
19:00Passover Meal at St Anne'sJoin us to experience a Passover meal, please sign up at the back of Church for catering purposes.
Thursday 29th March 2018 Holy Week
19:30Maundy Thursday Service at St Mark's
Friday 30th March 2018 Good Friday
10:00Craft Morning at St Anne'sYoung children need to be accompanied.
10:30Good Friday Service at St Mark's
12:00Ecumenical Service in Royton Precinct
Saturday 31st March 2018 00:00This was our Maundy Thursday Vigil