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Tetbury Advertiser/News from St Marys’: November 2021

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Tetbury Advertiser/News from St Marys’: November 2021

Lest we forget.

These words – now so treasured – come from a refrain in a poem written by Rudyard Kipling, “Recessional”. I love the way this poem – or hymn – talks about the time when “the tumult and the shouting die” and we allow silence to fall, to honour and to remember.

It will be a privilege to share in our remembering, both at the 11am two-minute silence on Thursday 11th November, and then on Remembrance Sunday. This year, loving concern to keep everyone safe means we will again hold the Remembrance Service at the War Memorial at 2.30pm on Sunday 14th November. We are delighted that there are no restrictions on attending, so everyone is invited as we share in the traditional service, led by Tetbury Area Churches together. After two years, it will be so moving to sing together those much-loved hymns: “Eternal Father, strong to Tave”, “Jerusalem”, “O God our help in ages past” and then, of course, The National Anthem.

And, at St Marys’ Church, those words “Lest we forget” have a special significance this year. You may have noticed that they are carved on the steps as you enter the church. The re-designed entrance was completed in 2018, and dedicated to the fallen as part of the Centenary Commemoration of the end of the Great War. So it remembers not only those Tetbury men who fell in the two World Wars but would provide a permanent commemoration to the fallen of all wars.

And we are delighted to say that this entrance has just made the front page! The photo shown here is on the front page of the Church of England’s new national guidelines on providing equal access to church buildings. The aim of this guidance is to ensure that when a church says “all are welcome”, it really means it! We understand that we can only use the language of inclusivity when everybody can access our buildings and our activities. We hope that our re-designed main entrance does just that – and I love the way the design is like open arms, welcoming all.
So, we are very proud to be held up as an example of this hospitality, which is at the heart of our faith. And our huge thanks goes to the then Churchwarden, Keith Essam, whose leadership and inspiration made it possible. Thank you to Keith and his team.

We look forward to welcoming you, perhaps to Sunday Services at 8.30am and 10am every week, in person or online (see our website for details of live streaming); or making a date with services and events through December for Advent and Christmas. More to following in the December edition of our wonderful “Tetbury Advertiser”.

And I’ll leave you with the words of the opening prayer of our traditional Remembrance Sunday service:

O Lord, our maker and our strength, from whose love in Christ we can never be parted either by death or defeat: May our remembrance this day deepen our sorrow for the loss and wastes of war, make us more grateful to those who courageously gave their lives to defend this land and commonwealth; and may all who bear the scars and memories of conflicts, past and present, know your healing love for the sake of Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace. Amen.

God be with you through this time of remembering.

With love and prayers, Poppy (The Revd Poppy Hughes, Parish Priest)

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