16 August 2020 – Tenth Sunday after Trinity

WELCOME
We hope that the weather is now more to your liking, especially the temperature. The early days of last week were apparently the hottest since 1961.  Stuart doesn’t remember that, he was living in Germany at that time, maybe it wasn’t so hot there? Jane doesn’t remember it either, as she was very young in the summer of 1961! Stuart does remember the cold at the beginning of 1963 though. It was his first term away at prep school, in short trousers.
 
I was wondering about what is said in the Bible about weather, and remembered Matthew 16: He answered them, ‘When it is evening, you say, “It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.” And in the morning, “It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.” You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. The origin of the saying Red sky at night
 
Today’s Gospel reading is two separate parts. The parable in the first part, and the miracle in the second. Bishop Colin’s reflection features the parable, and the picture above represents the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table that the dogs eat, as the woman says before the miracle.
 
A good thing that happened this week is the safe arrival of the baby grand piano we have been given. It is a Challon, and is in the chancel. Thanks to everyone who contributed towards the removal costs.
 
Saturday is the 75th anniversary of VJ Day. Bellringers around the UK commemorated the surrender of Japan in the Second World War whilst observing social distancing. In Windsor, St Andrews, St Johns and the Curfew Tower all rang their tenor bells 75 times just after 11:00.
 
Hoping you have a good week.
 
May God bless you all
Stuart & Jane
Welcome in the name of Christ. God’s grace, mercy and peace be with you.
and also with you.
 
Faithful one, whose word is life.
Come with saving power
to free our praise,
inspire our prayer
and shape our lives
for the kingdom of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.
 
COLLECT

Let your merciful ears, O Lord,
be open to the prayers of your humble servants;
and that they may obtain their petitions
make them to ask such things as shall please you;
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.

READINGS

Isaiah 56.1, 6-8

1 Thus says the Lord:
   Maintain justice, and do what is right,
for soon my salvation will come,
   and my deliverance be revealed.

6 And the foreigners who join themselves to the Lord,
   to minister to him, to love the name of the Lord,
   and to be his servants,
all who keep the sabbath, and do not profane it,
   and hold fast my covenant—
7 these I will bring to my holy mountain,
   and make them joyful in my house of prayer;
their burnt-offerings and their sacrifices
   will be accepted on my altar;
for my house shall be called a house of prayer
   for all peoples.
8 Thus says the Lord God,
   who gathers the outcasts of Israel,
I will gather others to them
   besides those already gathered.

This is the word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Psalm 67

1  God be gracious to us and bless us •
   and make his face to shine upon us,
2  That your way may be known upon earth, •
   your saving power among all nations.
3  Let the peoples praise you, O God; •
   let all the peoples praise you.
4  O let the nations rejoice and be glad, •
   for you will judge the peoples righteously
      and govern the nations upon earth.
5  Let the peoples praise you, O God; •
   let all the peoples praise you.
6  Then shall the earth bring forth her increase, •
   and God, our own God, will bless us.
7  God will bless us, •
   and all the ends of the earth shall fear him.

Romans 11.1-2a, 29-32

1 I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. 2 God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. Do you not know what the scripture says of Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel? 29 for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. 30 Just as you were once disobedient to God but have now received mercy because of their disobedience, 31 so they have now been disobedient in order that, by the mercy shown to you, they too may now receive mercy. 32 For God has imprisoned all in disobedience so that he may be merciful to all.

This is the word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Gospel Reading

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew.
Glory to you, O Lord.

Matthew 15.[10-20] 21-28

[ 10 Then he called the crowd to him and said to them, ‘Listen and understand: 11 it is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but it is what comes out of the mouth that defiles.’ 12 Then the disciples approached and said to him, ‘Do you know that the Pharisees took offence when they heard what you said?’ 13 He answered, ‘Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. 14 Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. And if one blind person guides another, both will fall into a pit.’ 15 But Peter said to him, ‘Explain this parable to us.’ 16 Then he said, ‘Are you also still without understanding? 17 Do you not see that whatever goes into the mouth enters the stomach, and goes out into the sewer? 18 But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this is what defiles. 19 For out of the heart come evil intentions, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. 20 These are what defile a person, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile.’]

21 Jesus left that place and went away to the district of Tyre and Sidon. 22 Just then a Canaanite woman from that region came out and started shouting, ‘Have mercy on me, Lord, Son of David; my daughter is tormented by a demon.’ 23 But he did not answer her at all. And his disciples came and urged him, saying, ‘Send her away, for she keeps shouting after us.’ 24 He answered, ‘I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.’ 25 But she came and knelt before him, saying, ‘Lord, help me.’ 26 He answered, ‘It is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs.’ 27 She said, ‘Yes, Lord, yet even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.’ 28 Then Jesus answered her, ‘Woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish.’ And her daughter was healed instantly.

This is the Gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.

GOSPEL REFLECTION – Bishop Colin Fletcher
Trinity 10  Matthew 15: 10 – 28
 
Slavery and the Slave Trade have been much in the news in recent weeks.  But ask the question, when were they declared illegal or abolished and you get a surprisingly wide group of answers.  As early as 1315 Louis X, King of France, decreed that any slave setting foot on French ground should be freed.  But for their colonies it was a very different matter.  This country’s history too was marred, as events in Bristol and elsewhere have reminded us, by our dependence on the Atlantic Slave Trade.  The latter was abolished in 1807 but slavery remained legal in most of the British Empire until 1833.
 
It was in 1948 that the UN’s General Assembly declared that slavery and the slave trade shall be abolished in all their forms. Yet today it is estimated that some 27 million people are still enslaved in one way and another.
 
All of which makes me ask the question, how long does it take people to take on board radical changes to their beliefs and behaviour?
 
For the Early Church two of their most contentious issues were the food laws of Judaism and the place of Gentiles as believers. To be a proper Christian – the equivalent of a fully-fledged proselyte in Judaism – did you need to obey the Old Testament’s food laws and be circumcised if you were male? Or what?
 
These things were very hotly debated by those first believers, as you can see by reading Luke’s account of the Council of Jerusalem in Acts 15 and it’s no accident, I suspect, that Matthew draws attention to them by placing the incidents recorded in today’s Gospel reading so close together.
 
For what Jesus is doing is, in effect, to abolish his contemporaries’ reliance on the food laws in the pursuit of religious purity – and to commend a Gentile woman, not because of her obedience to the law, but because of her faith.  In other words, he was subverting two of the key planks of the religion he had been taught from his mother’s knee and was replacing it with his own new order.
 
So how long did it take those first Christians to internalise and make explicit what he was saying and practising implicitly here?  And the answer is – a good number of years.
 
I’ve already mentioned the Council of Jerusalem – an event that was triggered by what some of the leaders of the Church in Jerusalem considered to be the outrageous behaviour of Peter in baptising Cornelius and his household, eating with them, and not requiring them to be circumcised.
 
Its judgement, of course, went part way to the full acceptance of Gentiles but its advice still included, importantly for maintaining unity, teaching on the food laws.
 
Peter himself would drift back from what he had come to practise in sharing fellowship with Gentiles – and Paul would oppose him to his face.  Paul too, whether in Galatia or Philippi would encounter strong opposition from the ‘circumcision party’.
 
And so the arguments raged with each side claiming good biblical precedents for what they were teaching – as, of course, did the many slave owners of subsequent generations.
 
And we look back now and perhaps we are tempted to say to ourselves – How could they have been so blind that they could not see the consequences of what Jesus had said and taught – and what the Holy Spirit had revealed?
 
But before issuing that sort or judgement I’m always reminded that when we point the finger at someone there are always three others pointing back at ourselves.
 
What, I ask myself now and again, what will be the questions subsequent generations ask of us framed by the overarching one ‘How could they have believed or taught or practised that?’
 
Amen

PRAYERS  – Stuart
 
Let us pray, for the Church and for the world, and let us thank God for his goodness. 
 
As you have given your people the gift of faith, make that faith powerful as a witness to your love. Let your Church be constant in prayer, never doubting your power to save. And we pray for the Church, and all Bishops and Priests, throughout the world. We pray especially for our Archbishops Justin and Stephen. And in our area, we pray for Bishop Stephen, Bishop Olivia, Bishop Colin, Revd Rosie, and Canon Brian. We pray for all decision makers in the Church.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer
 
Gather into your fold the lost sheep of this world, the unbelievers, the hard of heart. Hear those who desire to know you but cannot speak their need. We pray for all those who work for peace, negotiators and world leaders.  We pray for all the countries of the world in a state of war; we pray especially today for Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Nigeria, Sudan, and South Sudan.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer
 
Guide and guard our families and all others with whom we share our lives. Bless the homes where there is sickness or any other trouble. And in our local community, we pray for everyone in Clewer, Dedworth, and in Windsor.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer
 
Bring healing to children who are ill or in pain. Comfort and strengthen parents who are anxious for their children. Give peace to all unquiet minds and troubled spirits.
And we also pray for all who have asked for our prayers, those whose needs we know, and those known to God alone.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer
 
[The Departed] Give peace to the dead who had no peace in their dying. Have compassion on those who died without faith, that they too may receive your mercy. And with confidence in the love of Christ who died for sinners, we commend the souls recently departed this life, and those whose anniversaries fall at this time.
Rest eternal grant unto them O Lord,
and let light perpetual shine upon them.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer
 
We join our prayers with those of our Lady, St Andrew, St Agnes, and all the Saints, as we commend ourselves, one another, and those we have prayed for, to your unfailing love.
Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ.  Blessing

Go forth into the world in peace,
be of good courage,
hold fast that which is good,
render to no one evil for evil,
strengthen the fainthearted,
support the weak, help the afflicted,
honour everyone,
love and serve the Lord,
rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit,
and the blessing of God almighty, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit be with you always.
Amen

SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER AT 10.30am
 
This Sunday’s service in Church is Morning Prayer for all the Church Family.
The order of service will be available in Church, or may be downloaded here
The service will be recorded, and should be uploaded later in the day.
Details of arrangements below

MP Readings
Psalm 67
Matthew 15 (10-20) 21-28
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SUNDAY COFFEE ZOOM AT 11.30am

After you have attended Church, or watched or listened to this Sunday’s online service of your choice, we invite you to join us for a chat over coffee via Zoom at 11.30 for about half an hour.

We will resend the meeting details later. 

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SUNDAY EVENING PRAYER AT 5.00pm

BCP evening prayer will continue this Sunday at 5pm via a Zoom link. We will send out the order of service, and the readings, later.

EP Readings
Psalm 90
2 Kings 4.1-37
Acts 16.1-15

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EVENING PRAYER DURING THE WEEK

We are continuing to hold Evening Prayer meetings every Tuesday and Thursday at 1700 (5.00pm).

The liturgy is Common Worship in contemporary language.
The best way to follow along is using the Church of England’s Daily Prayer App.
It can be downloaded from the Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store.
 
We will resend the meeting details later.

OXFORD DIOCESE CHURCH AT HOME

16 August 2020 10am – watch online
 
Live-streamed and ‘as live’ worship is available for everyone across the Diocese of Oxford, these services complement the prayers, meditations and worship offered by local churches. Our principal Diocesan services take place at 10 am each Sunday, except during August.
 
Church at home during August
 
Follow the link below for churches which will be welcoming our regular Church at Home congregation for worship during August. A range of family, all-age, modern and traditional services are available. For those unable to access a church service online, dial 0800 804 8044 for daily hymns, reflections and prayers.
 
Wherever you are, however you join in, you are most welcome.
 
https://www.oxford.anglican.org/coronavirus-covid-19/livestream
 
Reflections for a Church in Lockdown
Episodes are available to listen to now, or download it wherever you get your podcasts (search ‘My extraordinary family’)
https://blogs.oxford.anglican.org/podcast
 
PLEASE PRAY FOR

The suffering: Blake, Sam, Reuben, Margaret, David, Don, Karl, Hugh, Sarah, Elsie, Lesley, Joanna, Miriam, Refugees, Prisoners, the Homeless and those who mourn.
 
The departed: those recently departed this life, and those whose anniversaries fall at this time.
 
Community prayers: Clewer Green School, the head teacher Martin Tinsley and all the pupils, staff and governors now taking a well earned summer break. For all our Care Homes, for the safety of residents and staff.
 
Parish Cycle of Prayer: Please pray for all who live or work in Shirley Avenue, Rutherford Close, West Crescent, East Crescent, Hatch Lane, and Firs Avenue.
 
Anglican Cycle of Prayer: Please pray for the Scottish Episcopal Church. Please pray also for the Churches in Okigwe (Nigeria), Okigwe North (Nigeria), Okigwe South (Nigeria), Kebbi (Nigeria), Okinawa (Japan), Bukuru (Nigeria), Oklahoma (The Episcopal Church), Bunbury (Australia), Okrika (Nigeria), Bungoma (Kenya), Oleh (Nigeria), Bunyoro-Kitara (Uganda), Kentucky (The Episcopal Church), Kericho (Kenya), and Khartoum (Sudan).
 
Please continue to pray for and support your neighbours and families in any way you can whilst keeping yourself safe.

NOTICES

Please be patient as we implement the recommendations to ensure everyone’s safety.  Please note that in the event that all available pews are taken, we may not allow any more people into Church, as we must not exceed our maximum capacity, for everyone’s’ safety.
 
The advice from the Church of England and Oxford Diocese is that we must all wear face coverings in Church, unless we have an exemption. However, this does not apply to worship leaders, who do not have to wear face coverings when leading worship.
 
The one way system we used for Private Prayer is no longer in place, and all three aisles are in use.
 
On entering the Church, please use the available hand sanitiser.
 
We need to record who is attending Church for NHS Test and Trace, so will be keeping a log. A data protection (GDPR) statement is available.
 
Please find a pew marked with the green Available Pew sign. One person, or one household/bubble per pew.
 
If you would like to light a candle, please do so one by one. Take an unlit candle from the top of the candle stand, light it and then put it back.
 
We will not be taking a collection during the service, your envelopes may be left in the brass collection plate as you leave.
 
After the service, please leave the building promptly, keeping social distancing at all times.
                                      
On leaving the Church, please use the hand sanitiser again.
A short video showing the changes recently implemented
PARISH MAILING LIST

If you know of anyone who would like to receive the Pews News by email, please ask them to email office@clewerparish.org to be added to the list. We currently have 89 subscribers.
We are still waiting to hear from you and share your stories. Please email them to rector@clewerparish.org or office@clewerparish.org

Church Finances – message from Andrew
Now Sunday services have resumed, you can put your envelopes in the collection plate in Church on the table outside the bell tower, or if you come to private prayer, on Wednesday.
Or you might like to consider continuing your regular giving by paying directly to our bank account, the details of which are:
HSBC Bank, High Street, Windsor
Sort Code: 40-47-37
Account number: 11373366  Account name: PCC St Andrews Church
 
Symbols of hope and happiness – I would like to set you all a creative challenge. How about knitting or crocheting symbols of hope and happiness, flowers, hearts, crosses, doves etc. Any colours and shape. Then when we are able to gather, we can join them all together to make an altar frontal or a banner, in celebration of faith, hope and love. Let me know if you’d like to join in. Revd Rosie
Pictures can be posted to the St Andrews Facebook Page
https://www.facebook.com/standrewsclewer

Piano Appeal – St Andrews has been gifted a baby grand piano. Thank you to everyone who contributed towards the cost of moving it, it is now in the chancel.
Windsor Foodshare – are now putting boxes in various locations in the area for donations. They welcome all non-perishable foods. Details on their Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/windsorfoodshare/
Trevor Morgan’s Fundraising for a school in Kenya
Trevor has asked us to remind you that he is still collecting banknotes and coins, from any country, any age. The need for funds in the school in Nakuru, Kenya is even greater as a result of the pandemic and like here, the school has had to close, and children are struggling. Trevor is happy to collect coins and notes from anyone.
Please email the Parish Office – office@clewerparish.org – if you can help.
 
Psalm Resource
Robert, our organist, has sent us a link to a YouTube video of Psalms being sung by Guildford Cathedral Choir, directed by Barry Rose, during services at Guildford Cathedral and elsewhere, 1961-1974. It is many hours in length, and there is a key to which psalms are where in the recording in the first comment on the video. Click ‘Read more’ to expand the comment.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9uHfqSnU94
You might find that it helps to reflect and relax in these times. Thanks to Robert.

WEST WINDSOR HUB

A PROVISION FOR THE LOCAL COMMUNITY – A SUPPORT HELP-LINE CONNECTING YOU TO RESOURCES AND ASSISTANCE OR A FRIENDLY CHAT OVER THE PHONE

If you have help from family or friends we encourage you to continue to accept help from them as usual.  If any of your circumstances change and you need help from outside these support groups then please contact us to let us know. If you are having difficulties we advise you to call the HUB number above and we’ll arrange help for you.

More information:
https://allsaintschurchdedworth.com
https://www.facebook.com/groups/WestWindsorHub
 
CONTACTS
The Parish Office is now closed.
Sharon (our administrator) is currently on furlough.
 
Out of hours office number: 07490 094261
Email:  office@clewerparish.org   –  Stuart will pick up any emails

Revd Rosie Webb: rector@clewerparish.org
Tel: 01753  852334
 
Parish website: www.standrewsclewer.org
 
Churchwarden: Stuart Cockman
 
 Pastoral helpline number: 07946 590223

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