Soul food - 27th March

Dear friends,

What a week! I was quite nervous delivering my first ever Lent talk last Wednesday – once in the morning at the Methodist church and again in St. Peter’s – but everything went well. There was a good crowd at both talks and some very complimentary comments. I was asked to make the talk on “Sacramental spirituality” available to people more widely so I have put it on my Blog. Just click here.

Then on Friday night we had the second installment of the RMC Dinner club. Seventy-five of us enjoyed a wonderful evening at the golf club and Karen entertained with her after dinner talk. As it transpired we also got to celebrate Vicki Robinson’s birthday! A very enjoyable evening.

The happy throng!

We have a new Director of Music at St. Peter’s!

Stephen Tanner came to interview on Monday and he and the interview panel agreed that this seems to be the right thing at the right time for both parties. Stephen will take his first choir practice this Friday evening and is also available to play for us this Sunday morning. A man of huge experience, being assistant organist at Exeter Cathedral, and Director of music at Exeter cathedral school  (he taught Chris Martin of Coldplay fame), he directs choirs with an international reputation. “Isca voices” have performed both at Notre Dame in Paris and St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. We are happy to welcome Stephen to the Raleigh Mission community.

Last Sunday

I was in the villages. I spoke about Grace, “cheap grace” and the fact that Grace costs a lot but that cost is borne completely by God. If you’d like to read what I said just click here;

Next Sunday is Mothering Sunday

I will be at St. Peter’s and Karen will be in the villages this Sunday. The readings set for that day within the Anglican church are as follows;

Exodus 2: 1-10. Moses as a baby cast adrift in the Papyrus basket and found by Pharaoh’s daughter is a testament to the mothering instinct no matter who is the actual biological mother.  

Colossians 3: 12-17. How Christians of either sex are required to live. The qualities listed might be regarded by some as typically feminine qualities and seen by some as being signs of weakness. But to have the capacity to act differently and yet choose to be humble, and forgiving requires great strength and is characteristic of Jesus himself.

Luke 2: 33-35. The pain of seeing your children suffer in any way is characteristic also of both mothers and fathers, but the maternal link tends to mean that the pain finds greater traction in women.

RMC Away day – 6th April. 10am – 4pm

This will take place at All Saints church in Sidmouth. There is parking available around the church. The reasons for this day are to build relationships across the RMC, to try and discern what GOD wants us to do here and will include teaching on the purpose of the church ending with a celebration Eucharist. Bring your own packed lunch. Signup sheets are in each of the churches.

Lent talks

In a late change to the programme the speaker today (the 27th) is the Methodist minister Wayne Grewcock and he will be speaking on the social justice tradition of Christian spirituality. 10.30 at Temple and 7.30 at St. Peter’s. The Lent lunch will be at the church on the Green.

East Budleigh’s got talent!

This Saturday 30th March. There are two performances – one at 2.30 and just in case you couldn’t believe what you saw, another one at 7.30pm. Both in the church Hall. I am singing in a Barbershop octet and there a is a stunning array of talent on view. Ticket includes tea and cake from 1pm and cheese and juice from 6pm. Organised by the friends of All Saints church. Tickets £6 adults and £4 children (Discount for members of the “Friends”)

The Lighter side!

The inflatable boy joke from the vicar of Dibley;

Thought for the day

Any new venture can be daunting. We are starting an occasional service for St. Peter’s school in church this mothering Sunday afternoon at 3pm. Will anyone turn up? Will it go well? The proof of the pudding is in the eating. I don’t know what happened between the church and the school prior to my arrival on the scene but fair to say that the relationship was quite strained. What we are trying to do now is build bridges between us. There is so much goodwill and in Steve Hitchcock they have an exceptional headteacher leading a great team of people. There are so many unknowns that I am tempted to agree with an artist friend in Gainford who has sadly now died. She gave me a painting which is in my study and on it she painted these words;

“The certainty of misery is generally preferred to the misery of uncertainty”

Which sums up one aspect of a person’s unwillingness to accept change or reach out and try something new. I look at that picture and try and push through the boundaries that we erect to limit our horizons even though the “misery of uncertainty” sometimes weighs me down.

The Prayer for Today

Heavenly Father,

Give us peace of mind,

And work through our worries to achieve your purposes,

Assure us of your comforting presence every step of the way,

Bless our endeavours and even when we fall short,

Use our failures also to further your kingdom.


Love and peace,


St Peter's C of E Primary School

Moor Lane, Budleigh Salterton, Devon EX9 6QF

01395 443167

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