LAMP Group Reflection
Our culture tends to think of waiting as a waste. We feel a need to use our time profitably. Many of us need to be doing something – now, always. I bought a very thought provoking and inspiring book recently titled “Those who wait”. Amusingly, it was out of stock when I ordered it and I had to wait nearly three months for it to arrive. But it was most definitely worth the wait. It is written by a lady called Tanya Marlow who suffers from ME and spends the majority of her life in bed, waiting to see if she will recover even a little, but meanwhile conducting a fabulous online and written ministry from bed.
Tanya acknowledges that little waits are bad enough. In the doctor’s surgery waiting for your name to be called, anxiously wondering if you have missed it. Waiting for a bus or train, some of us filling in time fiddling with our phones, distractedly checking emails or Facebook.
Long waits, where you don’t know the outcome or the length of the likely wait are exhausting. And she talks about her own stages of waiting for any signs of recovery, sometimes like an irritated adult, sometimes like a pre-school child “are we nearly there yet?”, often she waits with peace and resignation, sometimes even with hope?” In her book she writes about four Bible heroes (Sarah, Isaiah, John the Baptist and Mary). What she does is try to imagine how each of those characters were thinking and feeling as they wrestled with waiting (Sarah who felt life was unfulfilled as she waited so many years for God’s promise of a son to be realised, Isaiah as he continually passed God’s warnings of coming doom to the Israelites, but was ignored). But in those waiting experiences and that discomfort they did find God there.
And for that very reason, Tanya urges us to put down some of the distractions in our lives and lean into the discomfort of waiting, rather than trying to obscure it. She urges us to develop our ability to wait peacefully and quietly for however long. To make space. In that space perhaps God will speak and give direction. Perhaps there will be silence. The important thing is making space to hear.
The Apostle, Paul, helped a man in Macedonia by taking the Gospel to Macedonia but he had a lengthy wait before he could do so (Acts 16:6-12a). In itself this is an important reminder that the Holy Spirit often guides as much by closing doors (forcing us to stop doing something) as He does by opening them.
Sharing the gospel is ultimately the greatest help we could give to anyone too. And there has been much talk of the pandemic increasing church numbers around the world and its further potential to do so. But, where we do feel encouraged to share the Gospel, we need to ensure the time is right for each individual person we share it with. We too need the Holy Spirit to open doors. As for Paul, this may mean waiting, making the space to listen, and acting where we do feel called to do so.
This is an excerpt from the talk given by Louise Cook at the church service held on Zoom on 18 October 2020.
During the interregnum the church is here for you For enquiries about weddings, baptisms or funerals, or for any other pastoral need, please contact the Churchwardens: Maddi Forrester 714903, or Sheila Watts 07703 279165.
Improvements to the Church Building
Hand rails are currently being installed at the Chancel steps, on the ramp leading to the toilet door, and also on the pulpit steps. This will make the Church much safer and easier to use for services and other events. They are being made from oak and brass, which will sympathetically blend with the church furnishings. We must thank the Friends of All Saints and two private donors for making this essential work possible.
All Saints’ regularly supports the MK Food Bank, the Tearfund, and Crisis at Christmas. Various charities are also supported at the monthly Thursday lunches.
All Saints’ has an enthusiastic small choir, who lead the singing at Sunday Services. Choir members enjoy joining the Royal School of Church Music for some of their ‘Come and Sing’ events. The Choir is supported by the "Emberton Occasionals" at Weddings and special Services. For further details please contact Hilary Proud via the Rector.
There is an active band of bell ringers, who ring All Saints’ 6 bells before Services, and also practice on a Tuesday night 7.45 – 9.00pm. New recruits are very welcome. Please see the Bell Ringers’ page on this website, or contact Sheila Watts 07703 279165 for more information.
The Children’s Church meets in the Institute on the 2nd Sunday each month at 11.00am under the leadership of Maddi Forrester and Judith Taylor. See the photographs for some of their activities, and please contact Maddi Forrester, 01234 714903, for more details.
The Homegroup meets on alternate Monday evenings to discuss various aspects of the Christian message. The group includes people from other parishes, and new members are always welcome. Please contact Judith Taylor on 01234 240690 to find out more.
Friends of All Saints’
All Saints’ is supported by the Friends’ group (FOAS), who are a registered charity. They work with the Parochial Church Council to preserve and protect the fabric of the Church and Churchyard and to raise funds to assist with improvements to make the building suitable for use by the community for a wide variety of activities. Please see the FOAS page on this website.
A Brief History of the Church
It is believed that the building was constructed between 1340-1410. It is in the ‘Decorated Gothic’ style. Work began on the Chancel, with its magnificent east window and progressed through to the building of the tower. During this period, England was at war with France and the Black Death killed thousands of the population resulting in a shortage of skilled masons. This led to wages and prices soaring, which explains why the decoration becomes plainer on the west side of the Church.
Unusually we have a portrait in brass of Reverend John Morden, who was the priest when the Church was completed. His brass records that he gave two bells, one of which had the inscription ‘In Multis Annis Resonet Campana Joannis’ (John’s bell shall sound for many a year).
An interesting ‘rumour’, for which there is some corroborative evidence is that the remains of Sir Everard Digby, hung, drawn and quartered for his part in the Gunpowder Plot, lies buried in the Chancel.
By the mid 19th Century, the Church was in danger of falling down. Very extensive restoration work was undertaken by the Reverend Campbell Hulton - many of his relations and descendants gave generously to the scheme and are commemorated in the mural tablets and windows which are such a dominant feature of the Church interior. Restoration and improvements continue to this day, with the recent addition of cloakroom and kitchen, as we strive to bring the building into the 21st Century.
Rector: Post currently vacant
Churchwardens: Maddi Forrester, Cedar House, High Street, Emberton, MK46 5JB. 07769 923787
Sheila Watts, 28 Gravel Walk, Emberton, MK46 5JA. 07703 279165
Parochial Church Council Secretary: Janet Gamlen 01234 711729
PCC Treasurer: Warwick Clarke 01234 713174
PCC Members: Louise Cook, Candy Godber, Bill Moody, Hilary Proud, Libby Wemyss
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