Welcome

Welcome to the Atlantic Coast Cluster web site 

We are living in strange times, and we are permitted to open our churches for private prayer and worship.
The Churchwardens are working hard to ensure that the churches will be safe places for people to visit.

Currently there are no Sunday Services being held in the cluster, one line services are aviable, via zoom or on the audio page of this site.   

If you wish to obtain the zoom link for Sunday worship please email atlanticcoastcluster@btinternet.com  

if you know of someone who has not got internet access then the daily service can be
accessed by phoning 01872 308750 it is charged as local call,
the service will start after a moments pause, please share this with those you know who may like this.  

I will contine to post things that I have found helpful below as well as the Sunday Reflection

above is a photo the blessing which is in my hall, the celtic blessing,
produced by the wonderful calligraphy artist, Tess Cooling

Useful links

From the Times - Ways to Improve your Mood

A 3 minute meditation 
Singing out loud or joining a virtual choir
A kitchen disco - 35 minutes of dancing
Drawing for 45 minutes
Take a hot bath - May be more beneficial than exercise for people with depression
Gardening - 20 minutes of gardening can reduce stress and boost cognitive function
Deep sleep  - 7 hours at least 3 times a week
A 20 second hug - if you’re lucky enough to live with someone or some creature that can provide it.
One to one phone calls. (Happier people have more meaningful conversations with much less small talk)

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Reflection for 8th Sunday after Trinity
(you can listen to this reflection as part of the Service of the Word for 8th Sunday after Trinity found on the Audio page of this site) 

Reflection

The Lectionary year B which we are currently in, focuses on Mark’s Gospel and as it is the shortest of all the gospels therefore we also use the Gospel of John, to bulk out the reading both in quantity and some would say theological content.  So today we have John’s take on Jesus feeding of the multitude and walking on water, and they are in fact the two stories that were missing from last week’s slightly disjointed gospel reading from Mark.

The problem for me, is that these stories are familiar. I rather expect you have all heard them numerous times before so even before I speak, there is an accepted belief and truth about these stories, your personal belief and truth.  You will have a view on them, your perspective is set, whatever lens you use to examine these stories with and thorough is one you are comfortable and familiar with.  So what new can I add? Little I expect, but anyway here goes.

Clearly our lovely lectionary planners, prefer the John retelling of these stories than the Mark, so what is that about? Especially as the Mark is much more straightforward.  The John has far higher Christology, that is, there is far more about the divine nature of Christ within it.  It draws on stories from the Old Testament, to show that Jesus, is God’s anointed.   So clearly there is something about the nature of the divine as lived out by Christ in this message today.

John’s retelling of the feeding of the 5000 resonates with the story of Elisha feeding God’s people with 20 loaves and fresh ears of corn, and how there was plenty left over.  John makes it clear that Jesus in blessing the food, is acting as the head of the household, as head of God’s people in that place.  He is now to be seen as God’s      chosen, leading the people.  The tradition in Jewish households was that the head would bless the food at the start of the meal and that at the end of the meal, when all are satisfied, any remains bigger than an olive would be collected.  So, when in our   story 12 basketfuls are collected, the message is that there was more than sufficient for all to eat and have their fill and then there was one basket of food for each of the tribes of Israel, all the tribes of God’s people are provided for, none are left out.   There was an abundance, after all were satisfied, no one was left wanting.

John is saying that in this miracle, the miraculous power and richness of the Lord’s blessing in and by Jesus excels and outstrips any in the Old Testament miracle and that the promises offered through and by Jesus are greater and more abundant than the covenant made with the people of God before.  Behold God is doing a new, wonderous and abundant thing, now it springs forth, do you not perceive it, to use the words of the Old Testament prophet Isaiah.

Sadly, many don’t, get the new thing, either then or now.  Many did not see the new thing, the God whom they knew, would not do something like this or through this.  Many later got caught up in the nature of the story.  It is not possible for all those  people to be fed.  It’s not true, there must have been more food! There cannot be that much left over! But the point of the story, is not if the miracle happened or not.  It is about the wonder and abundant love of God for his creation.  For all his creation.  It is about how Jesus reacts to the needs of those around him, it is about how he saw the need and met it.  He drew near to those there and           knowing their needs and met them, it is about the divinity in and with Jesus.

And what for us, well we are called to be Christ to those around us.  To hold the Christ light, to do as he did.   To notice the needs of those around us, to care for them and try with whatever resources we have, to share, and then, we too will find that there is sufficient for all.  Sadly, all to often, we want to keep what we have, and even strive to get more and more but sadly in doing so, we ignore those who have little, and fail to notice that we have been blessed with more than we need.

So my prayer, is we will be attentive to the needs of those around us and where we can share our abundance with others and learn to be Christ to those we meet.

Amen

 

 

 

 

St Cubertus by Sue Parkington
Written about her favourite church.   
Photo taken from happier times when the church was open

“Tis closed”, the old man said,

“Locked and cold within”, 

‘Why’s that?’I asked

‘I can’t make sense of thee’.

“Tis the virus; and the Bishops,

So they say, 

They’m scared we might get sick.

 I’m only ninety three”

‘Let’s chat outside a while’ I said,

Though raining heavily. 

“No good”, he said, then added,

“Just come along with me,

‘Tis cosy in the south porch,

And sheltered from the breeze”.

And so we shared our crib there, 

Saffron bun and mug of tea.

Keeping social distancing!

A friend and company.

 

 

Precious Life   (An Acrostic for Easter Time 2020) by Liz Cleves 

Perhaps we are listening, and

Remembering what is dear to us

Each of us recollecting Spring times, and the promise of nature bringing its gifts

Conscious too that the beautiful Earth is suffering from our ‘overload’.

In the morning I listen to the robin and the wren guarding my garden, and

Out early I see the mighty sun lift over the horizon

Unfettered and free in it’s course.

Softly I give thanks for all in my care and all that I receive.

 

Let me give thanks

In every way let me treasure my life and all that is dear to me

Fearing only fear itself and

Enjoying all while I may.