& Castle Square URC
Minister: Rev. Dr Phil Wall
Tel: 01443 300345 Mob: 07855090360
Admin email: firstname.lastname@example.org
18th April 2021
Our Zoom service today is being led by Phil who assures us that he had enjoyable week off and spent time relaxing as he discovered new places to visit!
Phil has many things planned between now and Pentecost when we will celebrate the birth of the church. We have five weeks to see what surprises Phil will have for us!
Schools have now completed their first week of full-time face-to-face education, universities are slowly planning for students to come together in person, all shops have re-opened and we can now travel to England!
Life is slowly improving, but many are understandably apprehensive, it will take time, we are urged to be cautious, some are eager to return to normal, but we must remember that many have yet to receive their vaccination.
Church Family and Pastoral News
We include this in the news sheet to inform our prayers.
- Many will have heard that David Marshman passed away peacefully on Monday. David became part of the fellowship at St David’s in 2009 when The Graig PCW closed and he was an Elder of Presbytery. David was a valued member of Cantorion, a small man with a powerful voice, especially when we were singing well known welsh hymns, he would repeat the last verse! He enriched our congregation and will be sadly missed. We keep Doreen and the family in our prayers as they adjust to life without him and prepare for his funeral.
- Bernice, in although not in good health, still has a sense of humour, which is a joy to see,
- John Davies spent a night in the Royal last week but is now back home. We keep him and Jean in our prayers.
- We keep Hilary Grinter in our thoughts as she has been feeling under par recently, but is now on the up!
- We think of Valerie Henson and Sue Salmon as they adjust to their new surroundings in residential care.
- We remember those who have doctor’s appointments or are waiting for results of tests.
- St David’s Elders have their monthly meeting this afternoon, among other things they will be looking at the responses to the transition of returning to gathered worship.
Rhiannon has been selected as a winner in a poetry competition via her school! Her poem ‘In my dreams’ will be published in an anthology entitled ‘Imagine -Voices from the UK’, a copy of which will remain in the National Archives of the British Library for ever.
Vena was able to visit her daughter in London recently which really cheered her up!
Viviane was able to enjoy the company of her daughter and family for a couple of days as they were able to visit her.
Hilary Goodfellow is delighted to share the news that she is to be a Great Grandmother.
We received a phone call last Monday from Caroline expressing her thanks to all who sent her cards and gifts on the occasion of her ‘special’ birthday on 9th April – her sister was able to visit her and she had a lovely day.
Sheila has written to say: ‘My son is making a good but slow recovery and I would like to thank everyone who has thought about me and my family and prayed for us. Thank you all so much.’
Birthdays this week
Birthday’s this week that we are aware of are Today Julie Evans and Gareth Cooke, Thursday 22nd Cerys and Friday 23rd Anne Coles. We wish you all a Very Happy Birthday, Penblwydd Hapus Iawn!
If you know of anybody celebrating special wedding anniversaries, birthdays etc please let me know and we can help them celebrate! I am still taking orders for cards, so, if anyone would like a handmade card, please contact me. Colleen
You may or may not know this!
The Duke of Edinburgh a man of private faith, used his role to bring together different faith groups. He founded St George’s House in 1966 as a forum for civil society faith groups and others to debate significant issues.
For many years he presented the Templeton Prize, which recognised outstanding religious and spiritual leadership. He organised an interfaith dialogue between Jews, Christians and Muslims in 1984, and he built on this by founding the Alliance of Religions and Conservation in 1995 to mobilise the great faiths to work on environmental challenges. He had the foresight to see that their moral teachings, and 80% of the world’s population, could be part of the solution to social problems.
The above passage is written by Zaki Cooper, trustee, Council of Christians and Jews to show the impact fully and wide-ranging work that Prince Phillip did.
Something to make you smile
Prince Phillip, the no- nonsense man, once said of sermons that go on too long: ” The mind cannot absorb what the backside cannot endure”
Thanks to Marilyn Leach for both items.
Phil’s 40th Birthday Plans!
Since Marcia included my impending decrepitude in the printed version of the newsletter last week, a few kind folk have mentioned getting me a gift to commemorate by 40th Birthday [11th May]! Whilst not expecting anything, the best gift you could give me would be to support a Christian Aid fundraising adventure that I will be attempting next month. Combining love of the Welsh countryside with a commitment to Christian Aid, I aim to climb the Welsh 3 Peaks (Snowdon, Cader Idris & Pen-y-fan) in 24 hours on May 15th. Details of how you can support me in this can be found at the following link. Diolch yn fawr! https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Phil-is-old?utm_source=Sharethis&utm_medium=fundraising&utm_content=Phil-is-old&utm_campaign=pfp-email&utm_term=57cbdafac8b24a328abd6412b30a3307
In Phil’s words – Welcome back after a break for Holy Week and those incredible Stations of the Cross, and a break after Easter, I hope you used it wisely, I certainly did. I had a few days away with a friend and their dog. We got to walk the Talybont canal, went to Carreg Cennen Castle, it was beautiful like a fairytale castle, and we even got Sunkissed on the Gower as we walked through sunshine and sleet – crazy weather!
But now I’m back and on Monday evening we had our last Double Vision discussion evening of the current run –with Llywelyn ap Gwilym and our very own Ray Vincent leading our discussions about patriotism… we were talking about the perils, pitfalls and positives of patriotism and nationalism, (if there’s any difference) what they mean and what our response is to those ideals as Christians.
A lot of different views were shared, some of it was quite challenging as we wrestled with the fact that whether we have a dark future ahead as pockets of fascism could be glimpsed across Europe and the UK, Parts of it were positive as we were thinking about how we might enable Wales, the UK and the world to be more prosperous and fair, sustainable and kind.
There was a lot of thinking about what will a post-covid society look like? It reminded me about one of my very first reflections back in March when I remember thinking how the initial lockdown might be compared to that of sabbath, to rest, reflection, renewal…how some good could come out of a difficult time. But 12 months on we might have different views.
In the shadow of the Second World War, as the spirit of despair and division hovered over Europe, these soggy islands chose hope over fear, compassion for others over self-interest, life over death, as the age of healthcare for all was born. Thanks, in no small part, to the passion and persistence of Aneurin Bevan, who simply wanted to share the wisdom of his local miners’ self-run health service with the rest of the country – to ‘Tredegarize’ the UK
About the same time the British and Irish churches decided they wanted to come together to help refugees following the Second World War. Eventually that group became Christian Aid which continues and celebrates its 75th anniversary this year. Since its early days Christian Aid has campaigned and collected, prayed and partnered with local organizations across the world in their aim to end poverty and injustice worldwide.
So for our challenge, our invitation is to start thinking about how we can raise awareness and or money for Christian Aid, we’ve got ideas up our sleeves and services on our minds, plus Christian Aid ones. we’ll come back to that, but for now we encourage you to start thinking ….are there 75 things you could do to raise money or awareness for CA
Perhaps walk 75 100 steps; take 75 photographs; bake 75 cakes; crochet 75 hearts to sell, do 75 Sudoku’s or word searches etc. You could do things in groups, like 75 laps of the park! We encourage you to think about what you could do to raise awareness or money for Christian Aid this year as we end with a Christian Aid Prayer
you loved the world into life.
Forgive us when our dreams of the future
are shaped by anything other than glimpses of a kingdom
of justice, peace and an end to poverty.
you taught us to speak out for what is right.
Make us content with nothing less than a world
that is transformed into the shape of love,
where poverty shall be no more.
Breath of God,
let there be abundant life.
Inspire us with the vision of poverty over,
and give us the faith, courage and will to make it happen.
A Thought for the Week
Keep your feet on the ground, but let your heart soar as high as it will.
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