Dates for Your Diary from Rev. Jo

The next Spiritual book club will take place in November. There will be two sessions, Monday 12th November at 11:00 and Thursday 15th November at 20:00. Both sessions will be at St Mary’s Church Beaminster. You only need to attend one session. We will be reading and discussing Fruitfulness on the Frontline by Mark Greene which is a practical guide to how we live out our faith every day.

Messy Church continues Saturday 10th November at 16:00 at St Mary’s Beaminster. Do join us to explore a bible story in creative and messy ways.

Join us on Saturday 24th November, 10:00-12:00 at St Mary’s Beaminster to paint pebbles in preparation for the Christmas Crib service and outreach. All ages welcome. Bring a black sharpie if you have one and an apron. More details on the website.

Christmas outreach – a date for your diaries. Join us in the Square, Beaminster on Saturday 22nd December from 10:00 to sing carols, share coffee and sweets, and to offer an opportunity for prayer. Come and bless Beaminster.

Saturday morning prayer breakfast. Last month I described our Thursday evening prayer as part of the Community of the Annunciation. We also meet regularly on a Saturday morning at St Mary’s Beaminster. We gather at 9:00 with coffee and croissants and share how God has renewed our hope that week. Next, we read the bible passages set for Sunday and discuss them together. Then we have a time of silent prayer, a time of praying out loud and conclude our time together with the collect and Lord’s Prayer. It is a great way to start the weekend and helps us connect more deeply into the bible passages for the Sunday services. All are welcome to join us any Saturday.

Following a fascinating week of philosophy and theology at St George’s House Windsor I wanted to pose some questions we were discussing. Is there such a thing as “the common good” and “the public sphere”? How might we define them? How should we as Christians act in response to the common good and public sphere? I would be interested in hearing your thoughts.

A Way of Life

As part of our prayer community, The Community of the Annunciation, we share a common way of life. This way of life is a framework for our spiritual development, not a set of rules to live by. As Simon Reed suggests in his book Creating Community: Ancient ways for modern churches “A Way of Life is simply an external structure which surrounds and supports our life in God.”

We are invited to use the ten different headings to reflect on our own spiritual journey and what our aims or challenges might be. The ten headings are focused as questions. They are:

How are we seeking to grow in knowledge?

How do we experience companionship on our spiritual journey?

What are our personal rhythms of prayer, work and rest?

What are our guiding principles of money and possessions?

What steps do we take to care for the environment?

How do we help others find healing?

What do we do to enable the Holy Spirit to guide us?

How doe we support others through prayer?

How do we show welcome and hospitality to other people?

How do we help others find faith in Jesus?

These headings give us food for thought in our own lives and in the life of our church communities too. Over the next few months I will write a reflection on each heading once a week and invite you to post your suggestions and comments via our Facebook page.

If you want to know more do get hold of a copy of Simon’s book via the Sarum Bookshop.

Click here to download the Our Way of Life proforma.

Wedding Bells at Mountjoy

On Tuesday 15th May Mountjoy School celebrated the Royal Wedding with an entire day devoted to wedding festivities. We were invited to conduct the wedding in a celebration at school in the afternoon.

I went down, in borrowed cope from the Beaminster vestment cupboard, to pretend to be the Archbishop of Canterbury for the day. The bride and groom were wonderful led in by a carriage of wheelchairs adorned with foam woggle horses. A ring bearer carried the pipe cleaner ring and the bride was attended by a matron of honour, the groom by his best man.

We promised to support the bride and groom with enthusiastic cries of “we will”, vows were read and prayers were said, both for all who had participated in the wedding day and for Harry and Meghan on their special day this coming Saturday.

Mr and Mrs Mountjoy were greeted with great enthusiasm and a disco reception followed with decorated cup cakes.  All in all a must enjoyable wedding celebration. Thank you Mountjoy for inviting me.

Visit the Mountjoy School Website.

Preparing for Pentecost

We will be celebrating Pentecost in a couple of weeks time both in church services and together at our Pentecost Praise afternoon. Do join us from 2pm on Sunday 20th May at St Mary’s Beaminster for all kinds of fun and games.

This afternoon, our youth group will reflect on Acts 2 and ponder where they see the Holy Spirit at work in their lives. Perhaps you might like to do the same today if you have five minutes?

Read Acts 2. Take a moment to think about the Holy Spirit in your life. Do you feel her presence with you? How does the Holy Spirit help you understand the world and tell God’s story? How would you like the Holy Spirit to help you this week?

Come Holy Spirit, set our hearts on fire, inspire us, lead us, empower us, comfort us. Amen

Thy Kingdom Come 2018

In 2016 the Archbishops of York and Canterbury invited us to take part in a prayer initiative called Thy Kingdom Come during the time between Ascension and Pentecost. The aim was to pray for more people to come to know Jesus. The prayer initiative continues and is now an international and ecumenical call to prayer. The organisers hope that ‘during the 11 days of Thy Kingdom Come, everyone who participates will deepen their friendship with Jesus, bring other to know Jesus or know him better, and come to know that every aspect of their life is the stuff of prayer.’

In the Beaminster Team we know first hand the power of prayer. Everything new that we have set up over the last six years has been discerned, begun, and sustained through prayer. Prayer is about listening to God and seeking his vision for our life together. We have noticed that when we make prayer a priority then we find it easier to tune into what God is leading us to do. When we don’t pray as much then we felt less sure we were doing the right thing. Prayer enables us to flourish; both as individuals and as communities of faith.

As people of faith we want others to know the same joy and fullness of life with God that we experience. Praying for people to come to know God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit is at the heart of our calling as disciples. God hears our prayer. We know that new people have come to Messy Church, to Walk in Wednesday, to be confirmed and baptised. New people are involved in Sunday worship. New people belong to the Community of the Annunciation. I know that people have returned to God or have come to know him for the first time or have drawn deeper into relationship with him through the prayer and activities of the Beaminster Team. God is at work here and we pray that we will see more growth, more commitment and increased flourishing.

You can be involved by committing to pray for people to come to know Jesus Christ. Pray at home or together in church. Perhaps think of five friends who you would like to pray for everyday during Thy Kingdom Come? You can join us between 10th and 20th May at worship, prayer events and at our beacon event on Sunday 20th May, 2-5pm at St Mary’s Beaminster where we will be offering a Pentecost Fun afternoon including games, activities, worship, prayer, BBQ, and hopefully a bouncy castle in church.

You can read more about Thy Kingdom Come on its taking part web page and stay tuned here on our site for more information about the forthcoming events. You can also follow Thy Kingdom Come on Twitter.

Heavenly Father, we pray that your Kingdom will come and your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Amen

With every blessing, Jo