All Saints Parish Newsletter 27th November 2015
“People will faint from fear and foreboding of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.”
Those words from the gospel for Advent Sunday (Luke 21.25-36) have a starkly contemporary sound. They echo the reaction of many to recent events. There is a sense of fear and foreboding at the horrific and cruel violence of IS – first in Syria and Iraq, and now much nearer to home.
That terror has driven huge numbers into exile, which scholars suggest was the situation our passage from Jeremiah (33.14-16), was addressing. It seems to have been inserted by a later editorial hand into what Luther called “The Book of Comfort.” These words speak to those already experiencing the exile and the destruction of hope after the fall of Jerusalem of which the prophet had warned.
It is a message of hope and of comfort, speaking not simply of the restoration of the royal house of David, but of a righteous ruler who will “execute justice and righteousness in the land” and who will bear the name: “The Lord is our righteousness.” These are words the Church would come to apply to Jesus.
Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians is probably the earliest Christian document we possess. Sunday’s extract (3.9-13) breathes a pastor’s affection for his people. He prays earnestly for them, night and day. He longs to return to them; not just to see them again, but to carry on the task of instructing them in the faith.
The letter suggests an imminent expectation of the Lord’s return, which 2000 years later we do not feel. But what Paul prays for them as they wait remains just as important for us: that they should “increase and abound in love for one another and for all,” just as he abounds in love for them, and that their hearts might be strengthened in holiness.
One of the values of praying the Psalter in the Church’s daily liturgy is that it allows us to express in prayer the range of human emotions. Psalm 25, which we sing at mass on Sunday, is one of the “psalms of lament” which express deep personal or communal grief to God. But it does more than just complain: it also meditates on God’s goodness, in which the psalmist trusts and finds hope. It is because of God’s goodness and mercy that the psalmist feels able to lament.
Like Paul, it also speaks of instruction:
Make me know your ways, O Lord;
teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me,
Good and upright is the Lord;
therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
and teaches the humble his way.
This is about more than the imparting of facts about God. It is training in a way of life which expresses itself in that mutual love of which Paul speaks. It engenders hope in dark times when the temptation is to despair of both God and humankind. The future we hope for, in which justice will roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream, reaches out to our present. It gives us a vision of what to work for in the here and now as we pray for the coming of the kingdom. That hope is not as a wistful longing but an active force which encourages us to be “alert at all times,” to the signs not just of Christ’s coming at the end of all things, but his coming to us, his presence with us, day by day.
Jesus says to us:
Be on your guard so that your hearts are not weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of this life…..Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.
A priest preparing for his first Advent in a new parish told me the other day of having to insist that the Christmas trees not be installed in the church before Advent Sunday! The forward creep of the festival of consumption that has appropriated the name of Christmas makes it difficult, even for those not given to dissipation and drunkenness, to focus on the more sombre purple ethos of Advent, but we and the world need that more than we need “Black Friday.”
Yours in Christ,
Fr Alan Moses
Vicar, All Saints Margaret Street
Area Dean of Westminster & St Marylebone
Please pray for those who have asked for our prayers: Asia Bibi, John Bradshaw, Fr Allan Buick, Peter Burbidge, James Cary-Elwes, Ian Coull, Dennis Davis, Mark Dougly, Kate Down, David Fettke, Jonty Gordon, Gaby Grace, Lewis Harvey, Gwyneth Hopkins, Pat Hunt, Alice Jullien, Andrew Laird, Tom Leader, Elizabeth Livingstone, Christine Loffty, Sister Martha (SMNC Tanzania), Joseph Musah, Miriam Nelson, Gordon Orme, Fr David Paton, David Pearce, Father Gerald Reddington, Canon John Rees, Nick Russell, Jock Scott, Stella Skinner and Helen, Rose Stephens, Judy Stewart, Buzz Stokes, Christine van Dyck, Jo Vincent, Canon Geoffrey White and Joy Wright.
For the recently departed: Prebendary John Gaskell (High Mass of Requiem held at All Saints on Friday 27 November at 6.30pm), Kenneth Sheath, Ian Hunter, Joan Foster (Funeral was held on Wednesday 25 November at 1.30pm All Saints Tilford), Mah, Wrenne Atkinson, Margaret Bowie and Geoff Dell.
Remember past priests, benefactors, friends, and all whose year’s mind occurs this week including: John Clough (former Chorister), Walter Ward (Priest), Archibald Ward (Priest), Florence Edwards, Emily West, Katherine O’Neil, Margaret Rodger, Douglas Lawson, Kenneth Armstrong, Pamela Freer, Mary Skelton, Mary Burton and Florence Duggan.
HIGH MASS OF REQUIEM for PREBENDARY JOHN GASKELL – TONIGHT
Friday 27 November at 6.30pm. Preacher: Fr Victor Stock. Mass setting – Duruflé. Refreshments will be served afterwards in Church.
WORSHIP THIS SUNDAY 29 NOVEMBER – FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT
Litany in Procession and HIGH MASS, 11am
Preacher: Father Julian Browning
Missa di cappella – Lotti
People, look East – anon
There is Sunday Lunch service and Chris Self and Jan Fielden are the chefs. Tickets are £5 on sale in the Parish Shop before and after Mass.
ADVENT SEQUENCE OF READINGS & MUSIC by candlelight 6pm.
Please do bring some friends to this event, which marks the start of Advent, and see the newly re-lit Church.
WORSHIP NEXT SUNDAY 6 DECEMBER – SECOND SUNDAY OF ADVENT
HIGH MASS, 11am
Preacher: Fr Michael Bowie
Mass in four parts – Byrd
Hosanna to the Son of David – Gibbons
CHORAL EVENSONG & BENEDICTION, 6pm
Preacher: Fr Julian Browning
Short Service – Weelkes
Ecce virgo concipiet – Byrd
There is Sunday Lunch service and Patrick Hartley and Rebecca Hirst are the chefs. Tickets are £5 on sale in the Parish Shop before and after Mass.
CHURCH ARMY HOSTEL CHRISTMAS APPEAL
The Hostel for Homeless Women has asked for donations by Thursday 10 December (for delivery on Friday 11 December) of small practical and personal items that can be given as presents. They particularly need: Socks, blankets, bubble bath, soaps, scarves, perfume and chocolates. These items do not need to be wrapped. Please drop off your donations in the Parish Office (Mon – Fri 9 – 5), give to Janet Drake or Chris Self on Sundays or (if no one is in the Parish Office) leave them for collection in the basket in the Baptistery. Thank you!
Donations of mince pies to help towards our hospitality at the various Church carol services would be appreciated. Could any contributions of mince pies please be given to the Parish Office (please phone first to check someone will be in – T: 020 7 636 1788) during the week or give to Janet Drake/Chris Self by Sunday 13 December.
CALLING ALL WOULD-BE CAROL SINGERS!
Thursday 17 December 2015, 6.30pm for 6.45 – 7.30pm – All Saints is carol singing in Oxford Street once again and we need cheerful singers to make a joyful & pleasant sound. Please join us (meet in the Parish Office at 6.30pm) to sing and collect for two homeless charity projects in London – West London Day Centre and the Church Army Hostel for Homeless Women in Marylebone. Wrap up warmly! Mulled wine and mince pies to thank you afterwards in the Vicarage. For further information, speak to Janet Drake and let her or the Parish Office know if you can come and be part of the merry band.
Last weekend the Church of England launched a cinema advert and online resources entitled #JustPray featuring Christians from all walks of life each praying a line of the Lord’s prayer.
The 60-second advert includes weight lifters, a police officer, a commuter, refugees in a support centre, school children, a mourner at a graveside, a festival goer and the Archbishop of Canterbury.
The advert can be found on JustPray.uk which is a “new website to promote the renewal of prayer in a digital age”. There are extra material and films on what prayer is and how to pray and the site also provides a ‘live prayer’ feed of prayers being prayed across the globe via Twitter, Instagram and Vine, using the hashtag #JustPray. Anyone can send a prayer using the ‘add your prayer’ button on the website, which can be used and viewed by anyone 24 hours a day.
Monday 30 November – The Vicar is preaching at St Paul’s Cathedral for St Andrew’s Day.
Monday 30 November 2015, 7pm (following 6.30pm Low Mass) – there is a PCC Meeting in the Parish Room.
WALSINGHAM PARISH PILGRIMAGE 2016
All Saints’ thirteenth annual pilgrimage to the shrine at Walsingham will take place from Friday 15 to Monday 18 July 2016 after breakfast. Following the successful 2015 trial of extending the Pilgrimage time by staying on until Monday morning, we are repeating that formula next year. If you are interested (or would like to find out more) please speak to Jean Castledine at Church or contact Ross Buchanan on 020 7221 1312 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Because of the Shrine’s limited capacity and booking arrangements, those who would like to attend in 2016 will need to pay a non-refundable deposit of £10 to the Parish Administrator, Dee Prior, by the end of November 2015 to reserve a place on the Pilgrimage. A further £20 deposit will be required by Sunday 10 April 2016. Cash or cheques (made payable to All Saints PCC).
The December Parish Paper is available in Church from Sunday 29 November and is also on the website. The front cover features a photograph of the cherry-picker in use in the nave to focus the last of the lights to complete the new lighting scheme for the Church – which was in time for Christ the King. The lighting settings are now as originally intended, providing the full benefit and flexibility from the considerable time and money invested.
DECEMBER ALL SAINTS’ EVENTS for your DIARIES
CHRISTMAS POETRY TEA, Sunday 6 December 3pm, at Pamela’s. All welcome. Please bring Poetry or Prose on the subject of ‘Home’. To accept, or to request Pamela’s address, please speak to Pamela or Sandra in the courtyard or ring Sandra on 020 7637 8456 leaving your name and phone number. Cost £6 in aid of the All Saints Restoration Appeal.
WALSINGHAM CELL VISIT – DECEMBER 2015 – TO NOTRE DAME DE FRANCE (French Church off Leicester Square) – the All Saints Walsingham Cell plans a visit on Wednesday 9 December, 7pm to Evensong with a Talk on the history of the Church by Fr Kevin Mowbray followed by drinks. A fine modern ecclesiastical space with renowned Lady Chapel by Jean Cocteau and other historic and contemporary works of art, including a painting of Joan of Arc and a sculpture representing Our Lady of Mercy above the entrance welcoming visitors as they walk in from the street – Leicester Place. The sculptor was a famous French artist Georges-Laurent Saupique (1889-1961) who was head of the restoration work of Reims cathedral. All welcome.
Sunday 13 December – PARISH CHRISTMAS LUNCH
This is the final parish lunch of 2015. Tom Leman has kindly offered to provide a full Christmas lunch for the occasion. Tickets at a special price of £7, will include a glass of wine, and will be on sale in the Parish shop before and after Mass on the day (subject to availability).
Thursday 15 December 6.30pm to 9pm – CHRISTMAS CHARITY CONCERT in aid of Worldwide Cancer Research – Season’s Greetings. Christmas Carol Concert with the All Saints Choir and special guest mezzo-soprano WCR charity ambassador Deborah Humble. Tickets £20 or £50 for a family ticket at: worldwidecancerresearch.org/fundraising/event/carol-service. After the service you are invited to stay and enjoy mulled wine and mince pies with the trustees of and the scientists funded by WCR.
CAROL SINGING IN THE PARISH, Thursday 17 December, 6.30pm – Assemble at All Saints (Parish Office – via the door to the right of the church courtyard). All are welcome to come along and sing. Collection for the West London Day Centre & the Church Army Hostel for Homeless Women in Marylebone.
LUNCHTIME CAROL SERVICE, Friday 18 December, 12.30pm. Mince pies and mulled wine served afterwards. Do join us in a lunchbreak or before or after Christmas shopping!
CANDLE-LIT FESTIVAL OF NINE LESSONS and CAROLS – Monday 21 December 2015, 6pm. Followed by mince pies and mulled wine. All welcome – please bring some friends
CHRISTMAS EVE Midnight Mass & Blessing of the Crib, Thursday 24 December 11pm. Missa Sancti Nicolai – Haydn
Friday 25 December 11am – CHRISTMAS DAY High Mass with Spatzenmesse – Mozart.
Please see the noticeboard in Church where other events may be advertised as space is limited in the Newsletter.
EVENTS ELSEWHERE IN NOVEMBER
Friday 27 November 3 – 8pm & Saturday 28 November 10am – 4pm – CHURCH OF the ANNUNCIATION, MARBLE ARCH – ‘ALL THE FUN OF THE CHRISTMAS FAIR’ 2015. Last year (the first fair, run at St Cyprian’s) was a huge success, receiving lots of comments about how stylish it was – including from the Homes and Antiques Magazine and being voted in the top 10 UK Christmas markets by ‘I love Markets’. This year, with St Cyprian’s undergoing renovation, the event has transferred to the Annunciation, so everyone is invited to join them there to meet the best exhibitors of 2014 with a host of new ones. Live music, Christmas-themed demonstrations, refreshments and a candlelit evening gala with a glass of wine while browsing the goodies on sale.
ALL SAINTS MISSION ACTIVITIES
ONGOING SUPPORT for HOMELESS PEOPLE through:
MARYLEBONE PROJECT run by the CHURCH ARMY – A Day Centre, Residential and Transitional accommodation provider, re-settlement project and Educational and Training Unit for women. The Emergency Bed Unit – for which we have for some years helped to provide the funds for one of the 4 beds –offers a safe haven and refuge for women escaping domestic violence, financial crisis, sexual exploitation and mental health issues.
Year Round Support – we also support the Marylebone Resettlement Project with non-perishable food and toiletries or household necessities like cutlery or bed linen/blankets.
Thank you to everyone who contributes food and household essentials via the basket in Church or handed in to the Parish Office – we made a substantial delivery to the Project in the first half of September and immediately fresh supplies came in and have continued to build since then. Thank you! Please continue to donate these so we can help more people in need as the cold weather begins.
Day-to-day Support – we respond to the needs of homeless people who visit the church, providing luncheon vouchers for the West London Day Centre for rough sleepers who apply to the office and allowing a few individuals, who need a place to shelter or sleep during the day, to rest in the back of the church. We have created an information resource for Church Watchers, giving useful advice to homeless and vulnerable people seeking particular support or services. In the face of a rising tide of homelessness in London, please help us fund and support people in need through our Mission activities.
Want to help someone sleeping rough but don’t know how?
Call Streetlink on 0300 500 0914 and they will get a visit from the local Street Team who can put them in contact with the services they may need.
FURTHER COMMUNICATIONS OR ASSISTANCE FROM ALL SAINTS MARGARET STREET:-
* If you would like to encourage others to take an interest in All Saints/keep up with what is happening here, please forward this email on to them, or to people you would like to invite to services or tell them about our websitewww.allsaintsmargaretstreet.org.uk, which has a full colour 360 virtual tour for viewing the wonderfully restored interior of the Church – seewww.allsaintsmargaretstreet.org.uk/history/virtualtour – before a visit or if unable to travel.
* If you know of others (near or far) who would like to receive this regular update on what’s happening at All Saints please encourage them to sign up for the email on the All Saints website – see the tab News & Events> Weekly Newsletter.
* If you would like prayers offered at All Saints, please email the Parish Administrator Mrs Dee Prior at: email@example.com. Or make use of the prayer request facility on the website at: www.allsaintsmargaretstreet.org.uk/prayer.
DAILY SERVICES AT ALL SAINTS
On major weekday feasts, High Mass is sung at 6.30pm
SUNDAYS in Church
Low Mass 6.30pm (Saturday), 8am and 5.15pm. Morning Prayer 10.20am
HIGH MASS AND SERMON, 11am and
CHORAL EVENSONG, SERMON and BENEDICTION, 6pm.
MONDAY – FRIDAY
Morning Prayer 7.30am
Low Mass – 8am, 1.10pm and 6.30pm
Evening Prayer 6pm
(Except Bank Holidays – 12 noon Mass only)
Morning Prayer 7.30am
Low Mass – 12 noon and 6.30pm (First Mass of Sunday)
Evening Prayer 6pm
A priest is available for confessions/counsel Monday – Friday from 12.30-1pm and at 5.30pm Monday – Saturday, or by appointment. (Special arrangements apply in Lent and for Holy Week.)