The Parishioner Dec 2021- Jan 2022

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THE PARISHIONER Christmas 2021 and New Year 2022


DECEMBER LETTER It is a beautiful frosty and sunny morning as I write to you but I imagine that very few people enjoy this time of year when daylight is in such short supply. It gets dark increasingly early and it’s easy to get caught out – forgetting your bike doesn’t have lights or you haven’t reset the auto-timer to account for the change. One thing I do love though is to walk past houses where lights are on but curtains not yet drawn. Call me nosey if you like but it isn’t that!! …. I love to peep inside and see families together, children just home from school, dogs giving an excited greeting, TV on in many cases – life in all its fulness. Of course, there are other houses still in darkness, maybe a lonely person waiting for their carer to arrive, maybe long days at work mean the house won’t be occupied for many hours. Light is important for us all – we are recommended to take extra vitamin D in the winter and many people suffer from SAD {Seasonal affected disorder] when depression sets in due to lack of healing sunlight. Yes, light is healing – it lifts our spirits to have a sunny day, we have birthday cake candles, Christmas tree lights, fireworks – all ways of celebrating with light. Many thousands of years ago the Jews were living in darkness. They had lost their way, they’d lost their connection to God so God sent the prophet Isaiah with this amazing prophecy of hope: Isaiah 9:2,6 ‘The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness- on them light has shined. For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests on his shoulders; he is named Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace’. Jesus is that light, he proclaimed ‘I am the light of the world; those who follow me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life’ [John 8:12]. This powerful and uplifting message is part of what we are preparing for this Advent as Christmas approaches. However, Jesus didn’t stop there, he passed that gift to us [Matt 5:14,16] ‘You are the 2


light of the world …. Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and give glory to your Father in heaven’. Nationally & internationally, many people during this past year have shown that they can be a light in the darkness as we continue to struggle with covid. Locally, we have very sadly had to say Goodbye to some dear friends who have been a light in all our lives. May the darkness of grief be lessened as we remember the way they lit up our days. As we put up our decorations or see them in various places this Advent, let us ask ourselves how we can be more of a light to those around us -in our homes, schools, colleges and workplaces. We do hope you will join us at some of the services this Christmas [see church website]. There is still time to take part in offering hospitality to Mary & Joseph [beautifully carved figures from the crib] as they travel round the parish in the Posada tradition. We wish you all a happy, peaceful and holy Christmas and everything good in the New Year.

Elisabeth

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IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Church of England takes abuse very seriously, and every church now has a meaningful Safeguarding Policy. At the moment the church as a whole is trying to ensure that every case of historic abuse has been properly dealt with. I am required to advise the Diocese of any and all allegations concerning anyone in any position of authority in the church, whenever they occurred. Every piece of information will be treated sympathetically and taken seriously. Please do let me know, or in my absence please inform Richard Peters, churchwarden and safeguarding officer safeguarding@ockhamchurch.org.uk . We want to ensure that every member is safe, treated with respect, and protected from harm. Revd Renos Pittarides Area Dean and Rector of East Horsley

01483 283713

FOODBANK The Cobham Food Bank still needs our support, both by our donations, and by giving out vouchers. The need for the Foodbank is as great as ever and donations can be made at both All Saints’ and Downside as well as Costa Coffee, Sainsburys and Waitrose in Cobham. Donations must be non-perishable.

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CHURCHES TOGETHER in HORSLEY and OCKHAM Intercessory Prayers DECEMBER 2021. Heavenly Father, we pray that your love will be at the heart of each home this Christmas to create an oasis of peace and harmony whatever the situation. Please help those besieged by ongoing troubles and anxiety caused by Covid 19 and grant them your Grace to turn to YOU and face the future with resilience and hope. May we all encourage a move away from our ‘consumer culture’ to the real CELEBRATION of your Birth! Amen

JANUARY 2022. Dear Lord, during the approaching Week of Unity in our Churches, we pray for an increasing tolerance and will to come closer together as Christians. May we be open and willing to learn from each other and be a force of good and encouragement in our neighbourhood and beyond, in order to show the World that YOU ALONE are at the centre of all our lives and worship. Amen

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PARISH TEAM Revd. Elisabeth Burke (01932 863886) Email: elisabethb@ntlworld.com LLM Lay Reader: Mrs. Clare Bevan (01483 479963) Church Wardens Mrs. Sally Pound (01392 400189) Mr. Richard Peters (01483 568837) Don’t forget to keep up to date with everything happening in our Parish by clicking on www.ockhamchurch.org.uk St Michael’s Chapel, Downside is available for hire for meetings and other events at very reasonable rates. Contact David Pappin (01932 863020) or email dfpappin@gmail.com

Please send articles for the next edition by the 19th of the month preceding publication to jacksoa1@me.com

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FORTHCOMING SERVICES Sunday 5th December 9.00 am St Michael’s 10.30 am All Saints’

2nd Sunday of Advent Songs of Praise Family Service with Cranmore Choir

Sunday 12th December 9.00 am St Michael’s 10.30 am All Saints’

3rd Sunday of Advent Holy Communion Holy Communion (with Pebbles )

Sunday 19th December St Michael’s 10.30 am All Saints’

4th Sunday of Avent No service Carol Service

Christmas Eve 10.00pm All Saints’

Christmas Eve Communion

Christmas Day 9.00 am St Michael’s Christmas Communion 10.30 am All Saints’ Christmas Day Family Service Sunday 26th December First Sunday of Christmas 10.30am St Martin’s, East Horsley – a short service for Boxing Day Sunday 2nd January 9.00 am St Michael’s 10.30 am All Saints’

Epiphany Songs of Praise Family Service

Sunday 9th January 9.00 am St Michael’s 10.30 am All Saints’

The Baptism of Christ Holy Communion Holy Communion (with Pebbles)

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Sunday 16th January 9.00 am St Michael’s 10.30 am All Saints’

2nd Sunday after Epiphany Sunday Worship Sunday Worship (with Pebbles)

Sunday 23rdh January 9.00 am St Michael’s 10.30 am All Saints’

3rd Sunday after Epiphany Holy Communion Holy Communion (no Pebbles)

Sunday 30th January 4th Sunday after Epiphany 9.00 am St Michael’s Holy Communion 10.30 am Group Ministry Service, place to be advised (no Pebbles)

PEBBLES children’s church takes place on the second and third Sundays of the month. Family Service is usually on the first Sunday, There will be no Pebbles on the fourth Sunday. Where there is a fifth Sunday we will usually join with East and West Horsley for a Group Ministry Service. Coffee and Tea is served after all Sunday services at All Saint’s and after Songs of Praise on the first Sunday of the month at St Michael’s Chapel.

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The Posada – December 2021 A Journey through Ockham, Hatchford and Downside and nearby areas this Christmas...

Originating in Hispanic countries to celebrate the nativity story, Posada is a Spanish word meaning “inn” and it is a re-enactment of the search by Jesus’s two parents, Joseph and Mary, as they travelled from house to house asking for a room for the night and telling people about the coming birth of Jesus. It is a chance for us to have Mary and Joseph (but not their donkey!) in our homes in the run up to Christmas, to help us remember the real meaning of Christmas – the special birth of Jesus. (On Christmas Eve those taking part would visit their local chapel to re-enact the nativity and place figures of Mary and Joseph in the nativity scene.) During Advent, Mary and Joseph ‘travel round’ the parish, visiting a different family or place every night. The overnight stay is a great opportunity to reflect upon the true meaning of Advent.

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Will you be a host to Mary and Joseph for a night this year? All you need to do is choose a night that will suit you to ‘host’ Mary & Joseph and fill in the relevant details on our Journey itinerary. The previous host will make arrangements to bring the figures to your place at a time to suit both of you. On the day you receive Mary & Joseph you can do whatever you like. Some people open the “inn” and provide a welcome drink for the tired travelers. Others might hand over Mary and Jesus at the door. The next day you need to take Mary and Joseph to the next host on the Journey rota at a mutually convenient time. On Sundays we do the “handover” in church at the 10:30 am service, so other members of the congregation can join in.

Name: Postcode (to aid Mary & Joseph’s sat/‘star’ nav!): Street address: Contact email address and phone number: Date to RECEIVE Mary and Joseph into your home (remember to keep the next afternoon/evening free for them to travel, as needed!):

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Baptisms: 4th November Freddie Jack MOSELEY 7th November Oscar Lee AXTON

Wedding: 6th November Sophie HOBSON and James BUNTING

Funeral: 30th November Lisa FORREST

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WINTERSHALL - EXPERIENCE THE CHRISTMAS STORY IN A NEW WAY

If you haven’t been to see the Nativity Journey at Wintershall (near Bramley) it is something not to be missed. Walk with Mary, Joseph and the donkey on the winding, steep road to Bethlehem. Register for the census and journey with other travellers, Roman soldiers and shepherds as you enter the stable to watch the miracle unfold. The Nativity Journey is an unforgettable experience, bringing the true meaning of Christmas to life for the whole family. The very first Nativity reenaction at WIntershall was in 1989. Now their professional productions, with casts of hundreds, are seen by tens of thousands.

Book your tickets to one of the sell-out 90-minute performances and enrich your experience of Christmas forever. Tea, coffee and cakes will be available before and after the show on 18th, 19th and 20th December. Parental guidance advised for under 5s.

You can book your tickets online at: www.wintershall.org.uk/nativity-play

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REMEMBRANCE POPPY COLLECTION The total raised by the Poppy appeal for the Royal British Legion in Ockham this year was the splendid total of £1,200.98. including £52.90 from the collection box in All Saints’. Very many thanks to all who contributed. Imogen Jamieson

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AND THERE WERE SHEPHERDS… Luke’s story of the birth of Jesus is brilliantly told – the angel’s visit to Mary to tell her she would be mother of the long-promised Messiah, the old priest in the Temple told by another angel that his wife would have a son to be called ‘John’, who would prepare the people of Israel for that event, and then Mary and Joseph making the 60 mile journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem, as required by the Roman census. When they got there, no room at the inn, and they settled instead for a convenient stable, where Mary gave birth to a boy child. Suddenly, Luke changes the tone. ‘And there were shepherds …’ – that’s what he actually wrote, just like that. ‘And there were shepherds’, doing exactly what shepherds do, looking after their flocks by night. But this night was different: yet another angelic message – a call to abandon their sheep and go into Bethlehem to see the baby Messiah. They were given directions and a ‘sign’ to identify Him. He would be lying in a feeding trough. Well, at least they would recognise that. And why the shepherds, in this glorious story of our salvation? Because the event needed witnesses, and the chosen witnesses would be this bunch of scruffy, smelly shepherds straight from the sheep-pen. Nothing could speak more eloquently of God’s purpose than that. This was not a Saviour for the strong, rich and powerful, but for everybody. The carpenter and his wife guarded the Saviour of the world, and the very first witnesses were not kings or priests but a handful of shabby shepherds.

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