OCTOBER 7th – THE NEW AVON VALLEY PARTNERSHIP COMES INTO BEING

All are welcome to attend any or all of these Services.

On October 7th there will be a day of Celebration of Ministry as the two new Benefices (Groups of Parishes) which comprise the New Forest North Group Ministry are brought into being.

The New Forest North Group Ministry.

 The Benefice of Ringwood with Ellingham & Harbridge and St Leonards & St Ives.

 The Benefice of Fordingbridge and Hyde and Breamore and Hale with Woodgreen (The Avon Valley Partnership).

 A CELEBRATION OF MINISTRY THROUGHOUT THE DAY

 SATURDAY OCTOBER 7th, 2017

 From 8.30, Breakfast at All Saints’, St Leonards & St Ives, BH24 2LS, followed by…

9.15, Holy Communion with the Archdeacon of Bournemouth, as we pray for the new Benefices and the events of the day.

 11.00, Induction by the Bishop of Winchester of the Revd Matthew Trick as Vicar, and the Licensing of the Revd Ian Whitham as Associate Minister, and the inauguration of the new Benefice of Ringwood with Ellingham & Harbridge and St Leonards & St Ives at the Church of Ss Peter & Paul, Ringwood, BH24 1AW, followed by refreshments.

 2.00, Licensing by the Archdeacon of Bournemouth of the Revd Nicky Davies as Associate Priest in the Avon Valley Partnership,with special responsibility for the Parish of Breamore, at the Church of St Mary, Breamore, SP6 2DF, followed by drinks

 4.00, Induction by the Archdeacon of Bournemouth of the Revd Canon Gary Philbrick as Rector, and the Licensing of the Revd Rachel Noël as Assistant Curate, and the inauguration of the new Benefice of Fordingbridge and Hyde and Breamore and Hale with Woodgreen (The Avon Valley Partnership),at the Church of the Holy Ascension, Hyde, SP6 2QJ, followed by Tea.

 

TOMORROW SHALL BE MY DANCING DAY

A traditional carol used in a Sermon by Canon Gary Philbrick on July 9th – the sermon text will be posted below.

1.  Tomorrow shall be my dancing day;
I would my true love did so chance
To see the legend of my play,
To call my true love to my dance;

Chorus:  Sing, oh! my love, oh! my love, my love, my love,
This have I done for my true love.

2.  Then was I born of a virgin pure,
Of her I took fleshly substance
Thus was I knit to man’s nature
To call my true love to my dance.

3.  In a manger laid, and wrapped I was
So very poor, this was my chance
Between an ox and a silly poor ass
To call my true love to my dance.

4.  Then afterwards baptized I was;
The Holy Ghost on me did glance,
My Father’s voice heard I from above,
To call my true love to my dance.

5.  Into the desert I was led,
Where I fasted without substance;
The Devil bade me make stones my bread,
To have me break my true love’s dance.

6.  The Jews on me they made great suit,
And with me made great variance,
Because they loved darkness rather than light,
To call my true love to my dance.

7.  For thirty pence Judas me sold,
His covetousness for to advance:
Mark whom I kiss, the same do hold!
The same is he shall lead the dance.

8.  Before Pilate the Jews me brought,
Where Barabbas had deliverance;
They scourged me and set me at nought,
Judged me to die to lead the dance.

9.  Then on the cross hanged I was,
Where a spear my heart did glance;
There issued forth both water and blood,
To call my true love to my dance.

10  Then down to hell I took my way
For my true love’s deliverance,
And rose again on the third day,
Up to my true love and the dance.

11.  Then up to heaven I did ascend,
Where now I dwell in sure substance
On the right hand of God, that man
May come unto the general dance.

 

DROUGHT IN KINKIIZI DIOCESE – request for help

Dear All in Christchurch Deanery:

We’ve had distressing news of the continuing drought in Kinkiizi, Uganda – see pictures overleaf and the message from the Diocesan Secretary below.

People have been very generous with the Hymnathon recently, and Gill Tybjerg from the Deanery will be taking some extra money from Deanery funds specifically for the drought with her when she goes next month.

However, if anyone would like to make an extra donation, we would need to know by Monday, July 3rd, so that she can take it with her on Friday 7th.

Please also remember Kinkiizi Diocese in your prayers.

Canon Gary Philbrick, Area Dean

From the Diocesan Secretary of Kinkiizi Diocese:

To all our development partners and well wishers

Christian love and greetings from the Diocese of Kinkiizi in Kanungu District, Uganda, East Africa to all our development partners and well wishers.

We thank you for your continued support for our Ministry to God’s people.

We are writing to bring to your kind attention the adverse effect that the prolonged drought has seriously caused to our people in Uganda and Kanungu District in particular some people have already started dying as a result of hunger. We fear that if nothing is done urgently, many more people are going to die. Schools may not operate up to the scheduled time of second term because of lack of food.

There are very many families affected but we would like to provide support to the most needy families with beans, posho and rice.

Each of these items is estimated at the cost of Ugx 3,000= (Three thousand shillings only) per kilogram today. We do not know what the cost will be tomorrow as it is changing every other day. As a church, we feel we cannot sit back while our people are facing this great challenge.

We will appreciate any kind of support towards our efforts to mitigate this challenge facing us today.

We have attached photos showing the extent of the effect of the drought on our crops.

We thank you for your positive response to our appeal.

Yours in Christ’s service.

Rev.Can.Bernard Bagaba

Diocesan  Secretary. Diocese of Kinkiizi

www.kinkiizidiocese.com

Our sufficiency comes from God (2Cor.3:5)

THE DROUGHT IN KANUNGU DISTRICT, KINKIIZI, UGANDA

BORN IN SONG -Trinity 1, June 18th, 2017

A Sermon preach by Canon Gary Philbrick at St Mary’s Fordingbridge on the First Sunday after Trinity, Music Sunday, and at a joint Service with Fordingbridge and Sandleheath Methodist Churches.

‘As you go, proclaim the good news, “The kingdom of heaven has come near” ’ [Matt 10:7]. 

We have entered the season of Trinity, that part of the Church’s Year known as ‘Ordinary Time’, which stretches from Trinity Sunday to All Saints’ Sunday at the beginning of November – something over a third of the year.  The liturgical colour is green – green for growth – and our readings follow through pretty sequentially – we concentrate mainly on Romans and Philippians for the first readings, and then hear Gospel Readings from Matthew right the way through until the end of October.

In his famous poem, After Trinity, John Meade Falkner puts it like this:

We have done with dogma and divinity,
Easter and Whitsun past,
The long, long Sundays after Trinity
Are with us at last;
The passionless Sundays after Trinity,
Neither feast-day nor fast.

But I don’t think he’s entirely right.  Trinity is certainly a ‘long, long season’ – and by the time we get to Trinity 19 in October it’s difficult to remember what number we are up to.  But surely, it shouldn’t be ‘passionless’.  It should a time of steady growth, of exploration, of thinking about new ideas, of moving forwards in our relationship with God.

The very name can do this season something of a dis-service.  We live in a culture where ‘ordinary’ is often seen as something substandard, mundane or mediocre – on a par with satisfactory: it’s okay, but nothing to write home about.  In fact, the term Ordinary here comes from the Latin word ordinalis, which refers to numbers in a series, ordinal numbers, and stems from the Latin word ordo, from which we get the English word order.  So, Ordinary Time is the ordered life of the Church—the period in which we live our lives neither in fasting (as Advent and Lent) nor in feasting, (as in Christmas and Easter).

Ordinary time provides the opportunity to dwell on all that we have celebrated in the last six months and ask, ‘What was that all about?’, and ‘What difference does it make to our lives and to our world?’  Ordinary Time is not so much dull as necessary.  After six months of a full and often intensive liturgical calendar, Ordinary Time provides contrast, variety and relief.  Just as the disciples couldn’t stay on the mountaintop with Christ after the Transfiguration, but had to come back down to the everyday world below, so we need Ordinary Time to provide a sense of balance in our lives – we need both routine and excitement, the everyday and the adventure, stress and ease, nights in as well as nights out.  There would be no rainbow without the rain, no extraordinary without the ordinary.  Both are valid and both are vital in our development as disciples.

So, it’s very good that we are worshipping together, Fordingbridge and Sandleheath Methodists, along with those from the congregation here, celebrating our life in Christ together.  And it’s actually rather long overdue.

I’m not sure when we last worshipped together as Anglicans and Methodists in Fordingbridge – we do it all the time in Sandleheath, of course.  Not only are we very near neighbours here, but also the Methodist Church and the Church of England are in Covenant with each other.  It was signed in 2003, and amongst many other things, we have covenanted: ‘to realise more deeply our common life and mission and to share the distinctive contributions of our traditions, taking steps to bring about closer collaboration in all areas of witness and service in our needy world’ [An Anglican-Methodist Covenant, 2003, Commitment 2].

And the Final Report on the Covenanting Process, from October 2014, begins, ‘An Anglican Methodist Covenant between the Church of England and the Methodist Church of Great Britain was signed in November 2003.  It established a new relationship between those churches, based on mutual affirmations and commitments to grow together in mission and holiness and make the unity of Christ’s Church visible between them’ [See both documents at http://www.anglican-methodist.org.uk/]. You can easily find both reports by searching for Anglican-Methodist Covenant – they make interesting and thought-provoking reading.

So, as Anna and Rachel and I have met from time-to-time to discuss our working together, it seemed like a good idea to take some practical steps to develop the already good relationships we have between the three Churches gathered here this morning.

And how appropriate the Gospel Reading for today is.  Mathew 9:35 – ‘Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and curing every disease and every sickness.’  And Matthew 10:1 – ‘Then Jesus summoned his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to cure every disease and every sickness.’  Jesus proclaimed the Kingdom of God, and then instructed his disciples to imitate him, and sent them out to do it – and we are his disciples.  ‘As you go, proclaim the good news, “The kingdom of heaven has come near” ’ [Matt 10:7].

And it’s not a Methodist Kingdom we are proclaiming; it’s not a Church of England or even an Anglican Kingdom; it’s the Good News that the Kingdom of God has come near.  It’s very easy for us to become so immersed in our own comfortable, little bubbles, that we forget that the rest of the world is out there, and in dire need of God’s love.  We get so set in our ways, so comfortable with our traditions, so concerned that things should stay the way we like them, that we forget that we are called to ‘proclaim the good news, “The kingdom of heaven has come near” ’.

We forget, as Tim Dearborn has written, that ‘It is not the Church of God that has a mission in the world, but the God of mission who has a Church in the world’ [Beyond Duty: A Passion for Christ, a Heart for Mission by Tim Dearborn, p. 2].

‘As you go, proclaim the good news, “The kingdom of heaven has come near” ’.

And it’s also very appropriate that we should happen to be gathering on Music Sunday – as music is one of the important facets of worship in both of our Church traditions.  Music Sunday is promoted by the Royal School of Church Music – for whom Tim, one of our Directors of Music, works – and is to celebrate and reflect on the gift of music in worship, as well as to remember the work that the RSCM does in supporting music across the Churches and across the world.

At the Offertory, we’re going to be singing a hymn from the Methodist Hymn Book, Singing the Faith, called ‘Born in Song’.  I’m pretty certain that it’s going to be new for us here, and I have a feeling that it may not be used all that much in the Methodist Church either – which is shame, because it’s a great hymn, with wonderful words and a soaring tune, both by Brian Hoare, a Methodist hymn writer and composer.

Born in song!

         God’s people have always been singing.

Born in song!  Hearts and voices raised.

So today we worship together;

God alone is worthy to be praised [V. 1].

It was on a train journey from London to Chesterfield in 1979 that the Revd Brian Hoare wrote this hymn.  Inspired by the opening sentence of the preface to the 1933 Methodist Hymn Book (“Methodism was born in song”), Brian traces the connection between worshipping together and the task of spreading the Gospel story: verse 5 begins. ‘Tell the world! All power to Jesus is given… Spread the word, that all may receive him; every tongue confess and sing his praise.’

At the time, Brian was serving on the committee producing Hymns & Psalms, the predecessor to Singing the Faith.  He was also on the staff of Cliff College, an Evangelical Bible College in Derbyshire.  From his home nearby he could see, up on the hills of the Peak District, one of England’s finest stately homes, Chatsworth House, from which the hymn’s tune takes its name.  Brian says, ‘The melody includes some big ‘jumps’ or ‘octave leaps’, which are symbolic of the huge fountain in the historic house’s grounds.

Both the words and the music of “Born in Song!” were written in a couple of hours on the train.

Music is a powerful way expressing of our faith, of drawing others into the journey of faith, and of strengthening ourselves to go out into the world in faith.

It’s great to worship together this morning – but where will it lead us ‘As we go to proclaim the good news, “The kingdom of heaven has come near” ’?

It’s great to sing together, but will our singing equip us better to live the faith in our daily lives that we proclaim in our worship on Sundays?

It’s great to break bread and share wine together, but will that lead to service in the world, to love of our neighbour, to care for those in distress, to reaching out together to serve our local community and wider world?

Questions we all need to take seriously if we are to be God’s people in the world.

The hymn, ‘Born in Song’, will finish with the triumphant words:

Then the end!

        Christ Jesus shall reign in his glory.

Then the end of all earthly days.

Yet above the song will continue;

All his people still shall sing his praise [V. 6].

Let it be so.  AMEN.

 

CHOOSE LOVE! – A Sermon at the Twinning Service on the Sunday after Ascension, May 28th, 2017

By Canon Gary Philbrick

(A Service for the 35th Anniversary of the Vimoutiers/Fordingbridge Twinning – See Sermon in French below)

Acts 1:6-14, John 17:1-11

May the words I speak and the words you hear be God’s alone, Au nom du Père et du Fils et du Saint-Esprit.  AMEN.

Gary, Louis (Junior Mayor of Vimoutiers) and Malcolm (Mayor of Fordingbridge) after the Service.

This time between Ascension Day last Thursday and Pentecost next Sunday is a time of waiting on the renewal of the Holy Spirit.  In the first chapter of Acts, which the Junior Mayor of Vimoutiers read for us a few moments ago, just before Jesus was lifted up into the heavens, he said to his Disciples, ‘You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and … to the ends of the earth’.

The Holy, Creating, Life-Giving, Sustaining Spirit, which has been there since before the universe was created, is still at work in the Church, in individual Christians, and in the world.  The Spirit which brings life, which works for peace, and which fulfils Jesus’ prayer at the end of the Gospel reading which our own Mayor of Fordingbridge read for us, ‘That they may be one, as we are one’.

So, during these days, we continue to pray ‘Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your people, and kindle in us the fire of your love’.

This year, these 10 days have an added intensity, as we have been asked by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York to pray ‘Thy Kingdom Come’, to pray for growth, in worship and service in the Church, to pray for our family and friends, to pray for our nation and our world.  Through the power of God’s Holy Spirit, we pray ‘Thy Kingdom Come’.  If you search for ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ you will find a wealth of material to explore different ways of praying, and we have copies of the Prayer Booklet on the table by the door.  And on Wednesday, at the 10.00 Communion, we will be praying for and with our partner Diocese of Kinkiizi in Uganda, with whom we have such a special link.  Everyone is encouraged to make some space in these days, and to try new ways of praying.

And there is much to pray about.

We are in the middle of a General Election, and we need to pray for good government for this country, to pray for all those standing for election, and for ourselves as the electorate.  And on Tuesday we’ll have the opportunity to hear what the candidates have to say when they come here for ‘Election Question Time’.

And in France, they are between the Presidential Election this month and the Legislative Elections next month.

And we are just beginning negotiations to leave the European Union, with many economic and relational uncertainties – what effect will it have on us, and on our European neighbours?

On Friday we heard of the terrible attack, part of a pattern in recent months, on Coptic Christians in Egypt.  Christians form about 10% of the population of Egypt, a sizeable minority, and the Coptic Orthodox Church, one of the family of Orthodox Churches of the East, is a very ancient and venerable Church.  It is one of the six denominations which has a place in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, the site of both the Crucifixion and the Resurrection.  And, in fact, one of their chapels is a tiny one at the back of the empty tomb.

On Friday, a group from the Church was on a pilgrimage to the Monastery of St Samuel the Confessor, 85 miles south of Cairo, when their bus came under fire.  Way out in the desert, a group of Gunmen wearing military uniforms attacked the convoy with machine guns before fleeing across the sands in 4X4 vehicles.  At least 28 were killed, and another 25 injured.

And last Monday, there was the dreadful attack on the Manchester Arena, with horrific tales of injuries and deaths, especially of so many young people – who were clearly deliberately targeted.  22 dead, and 66 still in hospital, many of them critical.

I’ll come back to this in a moment, but all that I’ve said is a backdrop to why I think that anything which helps us to look outwards, to form links with other communities, here and across the world, must be a good thing.

For the past 35 years, the Fordingbridge and Vimoutiers Twinning Associations have worked to develop and maintain friendships between our two towns.  I’ve looked at Dennis Bailey’s video, produced in 2002 to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Twinning, and it has some wonderful images of friendship and partnership over those twenty years.  And I’m sure those involved in the Twinning will have many memories of the fifteen years since then.

The work of the Holy Spirit is to bring people together, and the Twinning Associations have done that very successfully for the past 35 years, and we want to thank them for that and wish them well for the next 35 years.

In the wake of the Manchester attack, there was a Vigil in Albert Square in the middle of the city on Tuesday evening.  Thousands of people gathered to mourn, to express solidarity, to thank the emergency services, and to remember those who had died.

Tony Walsh, the Manchester-based poet, also known as Longfella, read a remarkable poem, which seemed to encapsulate the feelings of all those who had gathered, and really spoke of the sense of community which was evident in Manchester in the aftermath of the attack.

The poem ended, ‘Always remember, never forget, forever Manchester’, and then, almost as an afterthought, he added perhaps the most important words of all, ‘Choose love’.

Choose love.

The Bishop of Manchester, speaking on the radio a few days later, on Ascension Day, picked up on those words, and I’ve quoted them in Partners this week.

The Bishop said: ‘Tony Walsh, ended the verses he read at Tuesday’s Vigil with a loud cry of ‘Choose love, Manchester’.  Amen to that.  In the face of evil, choose love, Manchester; choose love, Britain; choose love, humanity’.

Choose love.

That’s a choice we can all make in the face of adversity, and in our everyday lives.

It’s the choice we make as we serve our family, neighbours and friends.  It’s the choice the Twinning Associations make as they draw our communities together.  It’s the choice we are urged to make by the Archbishops as we pray ‘Thy Kingdom Come’.

And any authentic prayer for God to come into our lives has to be a prayer to choose love.  Any prayer for the gift of the Holy Spirit is a prayer to choose love.

Choose love, Fordingbridge; choose love, Vimoutiers; let us all choose love.  

I’ll end with the Prayer for ‘Thy Kingdom Come’

Almighty God,
your ascended Son has sent us into the world
to preach the good news of your kingdom:
inspire us with your Spirit
and fill our hearts with the fire of your love,
that all who hear your Word
may be drawn to you,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  AMEN.

La HOMILIE: CHOISIS L’AMOUR – Canon Gary Philbrick, Priest-in-Charge

28 / V / 17, Ascension 1, 10,30 Fordingbridge

(Service pour le 35e anniversaire du jumelage de Vimoutiers) 

Une traduction de google – excusez-vous pour toute erreur!

Actes 1: 6-14, Jean 17: 1-11

Que les mots que je parle et les mots que vous entendez soient les seuls de Dieu, Au nom du Père et du Fils et du Saint-Esprit. AMEN.

Cette fois, entre le jour de l’Ascension jeudi dernier et la Pentecôte du dimanche prochain, c’est un moment d’attente pour le renouvellement du Saint-Esprit. Dans le premier chapitre des Actes, que le maire junior de Vimoutiers nous a lus il y a quelques instants, juste avant que Jésus ne soit élevé dans les cieux, il a dit à ses disciples: “Vous recevrez le pouvoir lorsque le Saint-Esprit vous sera venu ; Et vous serez mes témoins à Jérusalem, et … aux extrémités de la terre ».

L’Esprit Saint, Créatif, Vivant et Soutenant, qui existe depuis l’origine de l’univers, est toujours au travail dans l’Église, dans les chrétiens individuels et dans le monde. L’Esprit qui apporte la vie, qui travaille pour la paix, et qui remplit la prière de Jésus à la fin de la lecture de l’Évangile que notre maire de Fordingbridge a lue pour nous: «Qu’ils soient un seul, comme nous sommes un».

Alors, ces jours-ci, nous continuons à prier: «Venez, Saint-Esprit, remplissez les cœurs de votre peuple et allumez en nous le feu de votre amour».

Cette année, ces 10 jours ont une intensité supplémentaire, comme nous l’ont demandé les Archevêques de Canterbury et York pour prier «Thy Kingdom Come», prier pour la croissance, le culte et le service dans l’Église, prier pour notre famille et Amis, prier pour notre nation et notre monde. Par le pouvoir du Saint-Esprit de Dieu, nous prions: «ton Royaume vient». Si vous recherchez «Thy Kingdom Come», vous trouverez de nombreux matériaux pour explorer différentes façons de prier, et nous avons des copies du livret de prière sur la table par la porte. Et mercredi, lors de la Communion 10h00, nous prions pour et avec notre partenaire Diocèse de Kinkiizi en Ouganda, avec qui nous avons un lien spécial. Tout le monde est encouragé à faire de l’espace en ces jours et à essayer de nouvelles façons de prier.

Et il y a beaucoup de choses à prier.

Nous sommes au milieu d’une élection générale, et nous devons prier pour un bon gouvernement pour ce pays, prier pour tous ceux qui sont éligibles et pour nous-mêmes en tant qu’électorat. Et mardi, nous aurons l’occasion d’entendre ce que les candidats doivent dire lorsqu’ils viennent ici pour «Heure des questions électorales».

Et en France, ils se situent entre les élections présidentielles ce mois-ci et les élections législatives le mois prochain.

Et nous commençons tout juste des négociations pour quitter l’Union européenne, avec de nombreuses incertitudes économiques et relationnelles – quel effet aura-t-il sur nous et sur nos voisins européens?

Vendredi, nous avons entendu parler de la terrible attaque, une partie du modèle de ces derniers mois, sur les chrétiens coptes en Egypte. Les chrétiens forment environ 10% de la population d’Égypte, une minorité importante, et l’Église copte orthodoxe, une des familles d’églises orthodoxes de l’est, est une église très ancienne et vénérable. C’est l’une des six dénominations qui a une place dans l’église du Saint-Sépulcre à Jérusalem, site de la crucifixion et de la résurrection. Et, en fait, une de leurs chapelles est une petite à l’arrière de la tombe vide.

Vendredi, un groupe de l’Église était en pèlerinage au monastère de Saint-Samuel, le Confesseur, à 85 milles au sud du Caire, lorsque leur bus a été incendié. Dans le désert, un groupe d’hommes armés portant des uniformes militaires a attaqué le convoi avec des mitrailleuses avant de fuir à travers les sables des véhicules 4X4. Au moins 28 ont été tués et 25 autres blessés.

Et le lundi dernier, il y a eu une terrible attaque contre le Manchester Arena, avec des histoires horribles de blessures et de décès, en particulier de tant de jeunes – qui étaient clairement ciblés. 22 morts et 66 encore à l’hôpital, dont beaucoup sont critiques.

Je reviendrai dans un instant, mais tout ce que j’ai dit est une toile de fond pour savoir pourquoi tout ce qui nous aide à regarder vers l’extérieur, pour former des liens avec d’autres communautés, ici et à travers le monde, doit être un bonne chose.

Au cours des 35 dernières années, les associations de jumelage Fordingbridge et Vimoutiers ont travaillé à développer et à maintenir des amitiés entre nos deux villes. J’ai regardé la vidéo de Dennis Bailey, produite en 2002 pour célébrer le 20ème anniversaire du jumelage, et il a des images merveilleuses d’amitié et de partenariat au cours de ces vingt ans. Et je suis sûr que les personnes impliquées dans le jumelage auront beaucoup de souvenirs des quinze ans qui ont suivi.

Le travail de l’Esprit Saint est de rassembler les gens, et les associations de jumelage l’ont fait avec succès depuis 35 ans, et nous voulons les remercier pour cela et leur souhaiter une bonne chance pour les 35 prochaines années.

À la suite de l’attaque de Manchester, il y avait une veille à Albert Square au milieu de la ville mardi soir. Des milliers de personnes se sont réunies pour pleurer, exprimer leur solidarité, remercier les services d’urgence et se souvenir de ceux qui sont morts.

ony Walsh, le poète basé à Manchester, également connu sous le nom de Longfella, a lu un poème remarquable, qui semblait encapsuler les sentiments de tous ceux qui s’étaient rassemblés et parlait vraiment du sens de la communauté qui était évident à Manchester à la suite de la attaque.

Le poème a fini: «Rappelez-vous toujours, n’oubliez jamais, pour toujours Manchester», puis, presque comme une réflexion ultérieure, il a ajouté peut-être les mots les plus importants de tous, «Choisir l’amour».

Choisis l’amour.  L’évêque de Manchester, qui parlait à la radio quelques jours plus tard, le jour de l’Ascension, a repris ces mots, et je les ai cités dans Partners cette semaine.  L’évêque a déclaré: «Tony Walsh, a mis fin aux vers qu’il a lus à la vigile de mardi avec un fort cri de« Choose love, Manchester ». Amen à cela. En face du mal, choisissez l’amour, Manchester; Choisissez l’amour, la Grande-Bretagne; Choisissez l’amour, l’humanité ».

Choisis l’amour.  C’est un choix que nous pouvons tous faire face à l’adversité et dans notre vie quotidienne.

C’est le choix que nous faisons lorsque nous servons notre famille, nos voisins et nos amis. C’est le choix que font les associations de jumelage en rassemblant nos communautés. C’est le choix que nous demandons de faire par les archevêques alors que nous prions «Thy Kingdom Come».

Et toute prière authentique pour que Dieu vienne dans nos vies doit être une prière pour choisir l’amour. Toute prière pour le don du Saint-Esprit est une prière pour choisir l’amour.

Choisissez l’amour, Fordingbridge; Choisissez l’amour, Vimoutiers; Laissons tous choisir l’amour.

Je terminerai avec la prière pour ‘Thy Kingdom Come’

Dieu Tout-Puissant, Votre fils monté nous a envoyé dans le monde Pour prêcher la bonne nouvelle de votre royaume: Nous inspirez votre Esprit Et remplissez nos cœurs du feu de votre amour, Que tous ceux qui entendent ta Parole Peut-être attiré par vous, Par Jésus-Christ notre Seigneur. AMEN.