News from Water Stratford

Rogation 20th May - People were still in celebratory Royal Wedding mood as we met the following day for our Rogation Walk, this year also a Whitsun Walk as it fell on the Feast of Pentecost, the coming of the Holy Spirit.  As the previous day for the wedding, perfect warm weather made the English landscape in late spring look wonderful.  Starting in the churchyard, we made our way via the paddock for a gentle stroll around Martin and Di's idyllic garden, stopping at various points for an appropriate reading and prayer.  Part of the route was lined with may trees covered in white blossom, like a bridal path, and after the walk we were treated to drinks of lemon or elderflower in an echo of the Royal Wedding cake.  Many thanks to Di and Martin for their hospitality, to Mike and Di for planning the route, and to Revd Liz for a service which combined Rogation, important to us here in Water Stratford, with a day important to the Church everywhere, by adding the Pentecost Collect and a sonnet by the priest and poet (and rock musician and chaplain to our son's college!) Malcolm Guite.  The whole occasion put me in mind of a sonnet by another priest and poet, Gerard Manley Hopkins, which starts, 'The world is charged with the grandeur of God' and ends, 'Because the Holy Ghost over the bent / World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings'. 

Lammas 'Bread and Beer' 15th July- Our first (in living memory at least) Lammas service will complete the cycle of agricultural services which started with Plough Sunday, then Rogation, followed by Lammas marking the beginning of the harvest and Harvest Festival its culmination.  Lammas celebrates the first harvest of wheat and barley, hence the theme of Bread and Beer. So it would be great if anyone could bring some home-baked bread or home-brewed beer along to the service, or a bottle of their favourite brew.  Of course everyone is very welcome at this revival of an old tradition, whether or not they bring bread or beer!

Church Service and Rota- There will be a Lammas ('Bread and Beer') service at 11.15am on Sunday 15th July. Miriam will arrange flowers and Pam and Deborah will clean.

Sara Edwards

 


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