Readings for Week 16 in Year 1
Monday: Exodus 14:5-18; Psalm 114; Matthew 12:38-42
Tuesday: Exodus 14:21-15:1; Psalm 114; Matthew 12:46-50
Wednesday: Exodus 16:1-5, 9-15; Psalm 78:18-29; Matthew 13:1-9
Thursday: Song of Solomon 3:1-4; Psalm 42:1-8; John 20:1,2,11-18
Friday: Exodus 20:1-17; Psalm 19:7-10; Matthew 13:18-23
Saturday: Exodus 24:3-8; Psalm 50:1-15; Matthew 13:24-30
Let us do the sad news first: the permission to sing in church was conditional on infection rate remaining fewer than 50 per 100k. on a weekly average. As you know, the infection rate with the delta variant has zoomed upwards and is currently well over 130 per 100k. safety first must always be the route we follow so until the rate drops NO SINGING is allowed. The organ can still be played, so there will be music.
Happier news – the Church in Wales guidelines now published re-affirm that tea and coffee is allowed after service on socially distanced tables of six. Otherwise, for the time being, the regulations remain the same – please sign in or use the app when you come to church and seat, as we have been doing for the last year, in a responsible and socially-distanced way.
A reminder that the contemplative prayer group meets this coming Tuesday – details from Fr Geoff.
This Sunday’s readings begin with a warning to shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of the Lord’s pasture, a warning I and my colleagues have taken to heart. The gospel is a tale of Jesus reaching out to those he describes as the sheep without a shepherd, a reminder not just to the clergy but to all of us of our duty of care and responsibility for others. As in previous weeks, Mark couples this with a reminder of Jesus as Healer – the Jesus who comes to make us whole. ‘He revives my soul and guides me along right pathways for his name’s sake.’
Follow the shepherd!
The Good Shepherd
When so much shepherding has gone so wrong,
So many pastors hopelessly astray,
The weak so often preyed on by the strong,
So many bruised and broken on the way,
The very name of shepherd seems besmeared,
The fold and flock themselves are torn in half,
The lambs we left to face all we have feared
Are caught between the wasters and the wolf.
Good Shepherd now your flock has need of you,
One finds the fold and ninety-nine are lost
Out in the darkness and the icy dew,
And no one knows how long this night will last.
Restore us; call us back to you by name,
And by your life laid down, redeem our shame.