Let me share with you Malcom Guite’s poem, ‘I am the Vine’, which stimulates reflection around our Gospel reading for this Sunday, 2nd May:
John 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
How might it feel to be part of the vine?
Not just to see the vineyard from afar
Or even pluck the clusters, press the wine,
But to be grafted in, to feel the stir
Of inward sap that rises from our root,
Himself deep planted in the ground of Love,
To feel a leaf unfold a tender shoot,
As tendrils curled unfurl, as branches give
A little to the swelling of the grape,
In gradual perfection, round and full,
To bear within oneself the joy and hope
Of God’s good vintage, till it’s ripe and whole.
What might it mean to bide and to abide
In such rich love as makes the poor heart glad?
I have reflected on that Gospel reading in a video on YouTube, thinking particularly how life closely united to Jesus in prayer, Bible study and serving the poor, moves us inexorably away from approaching others always with suspicion, which is corrosive of trust, and leads us, instead, deeper into hope. That hope is founded in the victory of Jesus over death in His Resurrection. You can access this video by this link: FIFTH SUNDAY OF EASTER REFELCTIONS
Lucinda has recorded some intercessions in our garden for this weekend, and they can be found through this link: FIFTH SUNDAY OF EASTER INTERCESSIONS
We shall both be sharing with you in person on Sunday at the St Peter’s 10am Communion Service.
At 10am at St Augustin’s The Rev’d Steve Parselle will welcome you.
At 10.45 am at St Stephen’s The Rev’d David Lund will preside and preach.
Next Sunday, 9th May, the Sixth Sunday of Easter, Lucinda will preach, whilst I preside, at St Peter’s at 10am.
The Rev’d Dr Chris Steed will preside and preach at 10am at St Augustin’s
The Rev’d David Lund will preside and preach at 10.45 am at St Stephen’s.
At 6.30 pm The Rev’d Dr Chris Steed will lead Sacred Space, a short online service of a contemporary approach to the Church’s traditional Night Prayers, Compline. All are welcome. Follow this zoom link:
I shall keep you updated as we gradually settle into the relaxation of Covid 19 precautions as part of the national Recovery Roadmap. 17th May is the next date when there are some very welcome relaxations – so, watch this space.
Enjoy the week!