Church of the Holy Cross Uckfield
Sunday 1st December 5.30 pm Advent Carol Service
Sunday 8th December 4.30 pm Festival of Christmas Trees Service
Sunday 15th December 10.00 am Open Doors All Age Christingle Service
Sunday 22nd December 5.30 pm Nine Lessons and Carols
Christmas Eve 4.00 pm Crib Service 11.30 pm Midnight Mass
Christmas Day 8.00 am Eucharist for Christmas Day 10.00 am Parish Eucharist for Christmas
St.Michael & All Angels Little Horsted
Christmas Eve 10.00 pm Midnight Mass
Christmas Day 10.00 am Family Christmas Eucharist
St.Margaret of Antioch Isfield
Sunday 15th December 6.00 pm Carol Service
Christmas Eve 11.30 pm Midnight Mass
Christmas Day 10.00 am Family Christmas Eucharist
Open Doors Services November and December
Changes to the day and date of Services
Sunday 3rd November at 10.00am
Sunday 15th December at 10.00am
“Remember, Remember The Fifth of November
Gunpowder, Treason & Plot:
I see no reason why Gunpowder Treason
Should Ever Be Forgot”
November is a month of remembering.
Bonfire season is well under way by now, with the Lewes Bonfire coming up on the 5th, casting back to events over 400 hundred years ago, to the Gunpowder Plot of 1605.
Then on 10th November we have Remembrance Sunday, when we remember the dead of two World Wars and of all the conflicts since. We will also remember the women and men of the Armed Forces of our own day, giving thanks for them and praying for their safety.
On All Saints’ Day, this year celebrated on 3rd November, we will remember all the generations of the Faithful who have witnessed to the presence of God in the world for the last two thousand years, proclaiming his constant Love and Redemption.
And, more personally on All Souls’ Day 2nd November, we will be commemorating our own dead and the dead of our church communities, giving thanks for their lives and, in our own hearts, lifting them up into God’s loving presence.
All this “Remembering!”
Looking at the word, “re-membering”, it means “putting the members back together”, and that is actually what we are doing: making our history, our stories, our past live again in the present moment. We touch base with where we have come from so we can move on and face the future.
In our central act of worship every Sunday, in the Eucharist, we do the same. “Do this in Remembrance of Me” says Jesus, and so we do. We take the bread and take the wine and, by saying “this is My Body….this is My Blood…”, we enact the story of the past – the Life, Death and Resurrection of Jesus the Christ – and bring it into the present moment, the here and the now, so that He is in our midst, amongst us. The term for this in Greek (if you are still reading this you are welcome to glaze over!) is “Anamnesis” which means “remembering”, but in the concrete sense of touching base with the past, of touching base with God in His process of Salvation, so that we can know Him in the present moment, so that we then journey with Him into the future.
Bonfire, Remembrance, All Saints & All Souls: all caught up in the power and transforming presence of the Eucharist.
Remember, Remember indeed…..
Love, Fr. John
In October we can notice many changes in Nature. The weather is often unsettled. The days are noticeably shorter and cooler, the leaves on the trees of old England are changing colour and thinning out. Insects are getting scarcer and many are being caught by the seasonal abundance of Arachnids, such as the orb web spiders.
Birds such as willow warblers and swallows are migrating away from us to their summer quarters; many more, such as wheatears and pied flycatchers are passing through on migration to Africa. Other birds such as Brent geese, teal, pochard and pintail ducks plus many species of waders such as dunlin, grey plover and curlew are arriving from their Arctic and eastern breeding grounds to spend the winter on English estuaries and waterways. Mammals, like us, are preparing for the cold winter by storing food, growing thicker pelts and putting on weight by feeding on Autumn’s season of plenty. Some of these such as bats, hedgehogs and dormice will hibernate for months. Others, such as foxes, badgers, squirrels and mice will simply feed up and spend more time sleeping and foraging for food. The badger females are likely to mate and be pregnant in October and will suspend embryo development for a while until late December. The badger embryos take 49 days to develop leading to births (about 3 per female) underground in February.
The reptiles such as our common lizards, slow worms, grass snakes and adders have slowed down so much, in the coolness of Autumn, that they are compelled to hibernate in a secure cavity underground somewhere. Reptiles, insects, spiders and other invertebrates are poikilothermic or cold blooded, which means that their body temperature is not internally regulated like ours, our mammal relatives and birds. Likewise, the amphibians such as frogs, toads and newts. These too will slow down with the falling temperature and find somewhere damp and free from frost to hibernate until early Spring.
We humans do not have to mow the lawn so frequently, because the grass has no need to grow very much in the Autumn. We get tired easily, our skin may go paler and we wear more and warmer clothes. Our diet may also change with fewer salads and more hot soups.
Dr Martyn Stenning
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Contact for more information: Sarah Widdowson
The Church Times Diary July 2019
I recently heard a talk by the Historian and Television Presenter Bettany Hughes, and very good it was too. At one point she was talking about myths and history: and off the cuff she remarked that in the opinion of some neuroscientists, we can’t as individuals have a future thought without accessing a memory. In other words, in our minds the past not only roots the present but in a concrete way embodies the possibilities of the future. This resonated with me, especially in terms of prayer life.
Prayers – particularly repetitive, formal things like Morning Prayer, Evening Prayer and the psalms – accrete layers of meaning when we recite them, which spark off associations and memories, which in turn can speak to where we are in the present. They are like a palimpsest - a thing of lost strata and accretions.
A palimpsest is primarily a medieval or older manuscript with writing and illustrations which are later scrapped off for re-use for other layers of writing: so layers are built up, with older text sometimes showing through like lost memories. But my favourite palimpsest is actually an ancient fresco, in Santa Maria Antica in Rome which I saw when I was on sabbatical three years ago. Originally part of a guard room and temple complex built and decorated by the Emperor Hadrian at the foot of the Palatine Hill, it was in the 5th century turned into a church, and over the next three centuries another five or so layers of paint were built up before the church was lost in an earthquake in 847 A.D. The Palimpsest Wall, as it is called, is a beautiful but uncanny thing, an image of the Virgin Mary shown as Queen of Heaven (the oldest example of this image in existence ) looming out of the painted strata like a spectral Byzantine Empress, lost in time. In a similar way fragments of texts, scripture and liturgy float in and out of focus as we pray, the past making its claim on, and giving form to, the present.