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Weekly Sheet 12 December 2021

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Readings for Advent week 3

Monday:              Numbers 24. 2-7, 15-17a; Psalm 25. 4-10 Matthew 21. 23-27
Tuesday:              Zephaniah 3. 1,2,9-13; Psalm 34. 1-8, 15-22 Matthew 21. 28-32
Wednesday:      Isaiah 45. 5-8, 18-25; Psalm 85. 8-13 Luke 7. 19-23
Thursday:            Isaiah 54. 1-10; Psalm 30 Luke 7. 24-30
Friday:                  Genesis 49. 2, 8-10; Psalm 72. 1-8 Matthew 1. 1-7, 17
Saturday:             Jeremiah 23. 5-8; Psalm 72. 11-20 Matthew 1. 18-25

All can be found here

Greetings:
Two weeks to go! I hope you are all better prepared than me – I tend to be very last-minute and hope my good lady takes care of everything.

There is a contrast in this week’s readings. We start with joy and hope – ‘Rejoice in Lord always’ says St Paul ‘the peace of God which passes all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus’. ‘With joy will I draw water from the wells of salvation’ says the Psalmist. ‘Sing aloud O daughter Zion . . .I will restore your fortunes before your eyes’ we hear in Zephaniah. God promises good to us and for us.

Saint John the Baptist is, typically perhaps, less ebullient. – John said to the crowd who came out to him ‘You brood of vipers. Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?’ – essentially telling the crowd (and us) not to pretend that we have no part to play in this, that all is done for us and promised to us. He calls the people of Israel to look at how they live and how they behave – no more extortion, no more grasping for self, no more hoarding (pandemic words?). The passage, once he has proclaimed the coming of the Saviour who will gather the wheat but burn the chaff, end ‘with many other exhortations he proclaimed the good news to the people.’

The good news is the coming of the Messiah – the exhortation is that we must play an active part in our salvation, not resting content with where we are but always seeking out how better we can go out to ‘love and serve the Lord’, as we asked to do at the end of the service. God, again, treating us as adults and asking us to make right choices in his service.

Mr Drakeford has, again, issued a timely reminder and asked us to modify our behaviour – those of us who frequent pubs and dining places at least. The new variant not, so far, in Porthcawl, does provide another risk but it seems that the precautions we already have in place are sufficient for the time being – to quote Corporal Jones: ‘Don’t panic!’

Please complete & return your Electoral Roll forms, ready for the new Ministry Area – it would be a great help to have these soon.

There are blanks in each church.

Take care and stay safe:
Every blessing,
Fr Philip