you return your palm crosses in order that they may be
consumed by fire and the resulting ash used in our worship
on Ash Wednesday, 14 February. A receptacle has been left
out for this purpose in church and in the foyer of the
Lent 2018 begins on 14 February. There are two Eucharists
with Imposition of Ashes: said in the parish centre at
9.30am, and sung in church at 7.30pm. Please make every
effort to present yourself at God's altar on this 'Holy Day
of Obligation', and begin Lent as you mean to go on -
First Sunday of Lent
The Parish Mass this day will include an extended
penitential rite, featuring the Litany sung in procession.
Stations of the Cross
As in previous years, we will be combining with our Roman
Catholic brothers and sisters for Stations of the Cross.
These take place as follows on Fridays at 7.30pm. There are
few better ways to observe Lent than to reflect on the final
hours of our Saviour's early life.
Lent Course 2018
year's Lent Course is entitled 'The Joy of the Gospel', and
is written by Paula Gooder. The Course arises out of a
document of the same name written by Pope Francis. Paula
Gooder, a member of the Anglican-Roman Catholic
International Commission, was invited by the committee to
produce a study course that would help Anglicans and
Christians of other traditions, as well as Catholics, engage
with the rich themes of the text. Paul's work opens up Pope
Francis' words, which have been welcomed by the Archbishop
of Canterbury, for a whole range of christians.
There are five sessions in church on Wednesdays at 7.30pm of
approximately one hour's duration:
The joy of the Gospel
Saying yes and saying no
Proclaiming the Gospel
Making the Kingdom present in our world
The cost of
the book 'The Joy of the Gospel' is £7.99, and contains a
sixth session, Filled with the Spirit. Please sign
the sheet provided in church and in the parish centre to
obtain your copy.
Mothering Sunday (11 March)
Please note that the 9.00am Mass with homily will be for the
Fourth Sunday of Lent. At 10.15am, children attending the
All Age Mass for Mothering Sunday will be given a posy of
flowers to present to their mothers. The service will be
followed by Cafe Guides' refreshments in the Parish Centre.
Evensong is at 5.30pm in Quire.
On Passion Sunday, 18 March 2018 at 5.30pm, the choir will
lead a devotional performance of John Stainer’s beloved
oratorio, The Crucifixion: A Meditation on the Sacred
Passion of the Holy Redeemer. This work is no stranger
to St Matthew’s; it has been sung on numerous occasions
since its premiere in 1887.
The Crucifixion is scored for tenor and baritone soloists,
choir and organ. It was dedicated to Stainer’s pupil and
friend William Hodge, Organist & Choirmaster at Marylebone
Parish Church in London, where the cantata was first
performed. In composing The Crucifixion, Stainer’s
intention was to provide a Passiontide cantata written in a
musical language and on a scale that would put it within the
scope of most parish church choirs. Its structure is
modelled on the scheme of choruses, chorales, recitatives
and arias of Bach’s St Matthew Passion. The Rev
William Sparrow-Simpson, Succentor & Librarian of St Paul’s
Cathedral, compiled the libretto, drawing on the Gospel
accounts for the narrative elements of the story and writing
the texts of the choruses, arias and hymns himself.
Our soloists will be
Ronan Busfield (tenor) and
D’Souza (baritone), both accomplished opera and oratorio
singers in their own right. As is custom, the congregation
will be invited to take part in the five memorable hymns. If
you would like to sing the choruses with the choir, please
email Don Kennedy at
Donkennedy@f2s.com for details. All are welcome.
A retiring collection will be taken to defer the costs of
Four books titles for Lent
published by SPCK
"SPCK was delighted to publish four very different Lent
books, which offer four inspirational and reflective ways to
prepare for this distinctive season of the church's year.
However you like to engage with God on your journey, we hope
we've got a book for you for Lent 2018.
Our little selection of Lent books contains something for
everyone - with Lent Talks being a
particularly exciting partnership with BBC Radio 4.
Gathering talks from the best of Lenten broadcasting, this
short book contains contributions from Alexander McCall
Smith, Ann Widdecombe, Bonnie Greer, Giles Fraser, James
Runcie and Nick Baines. As Christian Morgan, Head of Radio,
BBC Religion and Ethics, writes in her foreword; "The words
of these Lent talks offer a kind of nourishment. This book
is a feast for the contemporary soul." We hope that this
book will be of particular interest to those on the edges of
faith, or looking for a fresh way to approach Easter.
From Sister Wendy Beckett, author with SPCK of Sister
Wendy's Bible Treasury, comes The Art of Lent.
Suitable for individual or group use, this book explores the
season of the Cross with an artistic spirituality. Each day
features a different painting, beautifully presented, and
with a daily reflection by Sister Wendy.
The Reverend Doctor Megan Daffern, Chaplain at Jesus
College, Oxford, has written a beautiful book focused on the
Psalms. Songs of the Spirit is a readable,
accessible and wise guide to the season, featuring a psalm a
day for Lent and Easter. John Pritchard calls this book
'Illuminating and spiritually rich'. For those looking to
dig deeper into the Bible, this is the perfect book.
Our final Lent book for 2018 is James McCaffrey's The
Way of the Carmelites. This prayer journey through
Lent represents a distinctly Catholic view of the Lenten
experience. Sarah Maitland, author of A Book of Silence,
called this 'useful and beautiful'. For those wanting a
traditional and prayerful way toward the Easter weekend,
this is the perfect book."
If you would like any or all of these books, ranging
between £5 - £10 depending on the number required, they may
be ordered via the Parish Office using the sign-up sheet
provided in church and in the parish centre.
The Little Book Of Lent is an indispensable
collection of readings from some of the most celebrated
modern-day spiritual writers with passages specially
selected for each of the forty days of Lent. These carefully
chosen insights come from men and women, lay and ordained,
across the denominational spectrum, and their wisdom is
combined with both a suggested scripture passage, and a
prayer to make your own. The book is published by Collins
and is priced £4.99.
Preparing for Easter - Fifty Devotional Readings
from C S Lewis: A selection of classic works from the
beloved and bestselling author C S Lewis, brought together
in one special devotional for readers to contemplate the
grand miracle of Jesus' resurrection. "I find I am
constantly realising that I owe many of my most basic
convictions about the Christian faith to Lewis'
imagination." Rowan Williams
In time for Holy Week, all weekday services will revert to
church from Wednesday 21 March. I would like to take this
opportunity to thank all those who have made our winter
arrangements in the Parish Centre work, those who have taken
on additional tasks, and coped with inevitable, and
sometimes unworshipful, disruption. Your efforts and
forbearance are much appreciated.
Holy Week is the most important time of the Christian year.
The way in which we keep these days has long been a strength
within our parish. The liturgical provision expresses not
only the most fundamental Christian memories and the
climactic events of our Saviour's passion, death and
resurrection, but also lays out the treasures and rich
insights of a catholic Anglican understanding and
expression. This is a time not to be missed when we recall
who and what we are as the baptised people of God. This is
our opportunity to do all we can to ensure that our Easter
joy is genuine. For posters showing details of all Holy Week
and Easter Services, please go to our Special Services
Coming Up page.
Please note that Fr Nicholas will be available in the Lady
Chapel at the following times:
Monday of Holy Week (26 March)
Wednesday of Holy Week (28 March)
Penitents are asked to come and go quietly via the north
door facing Collingwood Road, and wait in the middle of the
nave, well away from the Chapel, until the coast is clear.
All others are respectfully asked
NOT TO ENTER
CHURCH AT THESE TIMES!
As ever, we need twelve willing participants to submit to
having a foot washed during the Maundy Thursday evening
liturgy. This re-enactment of what Jesus did is an example
of humble service. It would be great to have some new faces,
or more accurately, feet in the mix. Please sign the sheet
provided in church.
All-Night Watch (29-30
The Watch with Jesus at the Garden of Gethsemane begins
directly after the Liturgy of the Last Supper at c.9.00pm
and continues until Morning Prayer at 9.00am on Good Friday.
We aim to have at least two people keeping the Watch at all
times, and entry will be via the north door. During the
'small' hours of the night, and for reasons of security, the
door will be secured and it will be necessary to knock.
Please sign the sheet provided in church.
Stations of the Cross
for All Ages
This service takes place on Good Friday, 30 March, at
10.30am. There will be a series of readings and activities
based on the Stations culminating in a visit to the Calvary
cross in the garden outside. Our time together will be
followed by refreshments in the parish centre. Further
details in due course.
On Holy Saturday, 31 March, following Morning Prayer at
9.00am, we invite you to help us make ready our spiritual
home for the coming festival. Please wear old clothes and
come ready to give us your best until approximately midday,
or for as long as you are able.