- East Sussex
Parish Events and Notices 2018
Please visit the "Past Parish Events, News and Thanks" page if you wish to see details and photos of older events.
GIVING DURING LENT. We have a tradition in our parish to have retiring collections at each of our services during Lent for a worthy cause. We will maintain this in 2018. If you have any ideas for a charity that we might support this year please let the Rector know, with some supporting information, by Thursday 8 February.
LENT STUDY GROUPS. We will meet throughout Lent for study and reflection and will follow the Diocese Lent Course: Inspiring Vision. We will meet for an hour each week in the Church Hall from 7.30-8.30pm, usually on Wednesday evenings-14th, 21st, 28th February, 7th and 21st March. The PCC meets on Wednesday 14 March, so for that week the study group will meet on Thursday 15 March. Watch this space for more details.
ASH WEDNESDAY - THE MARK OF THE CROSS. The first day of Lent is Ash Wednesday, which this year will be on 14 February. On that day we have a tradition of making the mark of a cross on our foreheads during our worship (which will be a Eucharist for all the parish at 10.30 in St Mary’s). Early in the morning the Rector will be at Buxted Station offering to mark a cross on the foreheads of our hardy commuters as they start their day. To be able to do this we will need ash - and we make this by burning the palm crosses that we distributed last year on Palm Sunday. For the next two Sundays there will be a basket at the back of each of our three churches. If you want your last year’s cross to be burned bring it to church and leave it in one of the baskets. The Rector will do the rest!
GETTING OURSELVES READY FOR LENT
It is time to start thinking about Lent. This year Ash Wednesday is on February 14. This means that we have Valentine’s Day and the first day of Lent coinciding! Everybody approaches Lent in a different way. For some of us, there will be no changes at all; for others, a totally different lifestyle with an emphasis on praying, fasting, and giving. Maybe we pray more than usual, or we pray with different emphases. We might eat smaller or fewer meals or give up a favourite food or drink. Alternatively, we might give more of our resources or give them specifically to special works of mercy during Lent. These are all outward signs of response to the season of Lent. However, for any or indeed all of them to have merit then it is vital that we understand why we are doing whatever we might decide to do. What does this mean-what needs to happen within us so that we can practise with more integrity and intention whatever we are doing on the outside?
In reality, there are plenty of possibilities for actions and practices during Lent; coming up with ideas usually is not the problem. But we shouldn’t do anything simply for the sake of doing it (or even worse to be seen to be doing it), even if it’s a good thing. It’s good to have a plan for doing. It’s even better to have a plan for being. There are many different possibilities for how we might be this year during Lent:
- ·More quiet and thoughtful;
- ·More open to God’s wishes;
- ·Better able to sit with people who need our time and company;
- ·More attentive to what we are reading, whether in church or at home by ourselves;
- ·More compassionate toward our own fears and failings;
- ·More courageous about using the gifts God has given each of us.
These are simply a list of possibilities, they are not in any order of importance, neither is the list by any means complete. What is right for each of us will be unique to us, and unique even to 2018. Every year, our situation will be different and so how we might respond will be different also. However, I do encourage you all to think carefully about what might be right for us to do (or not do) throughout Lent this year. Here are some ideas to help us identify a good approach to Lent this year in the days prior to Lent.
-Ask God, every day, “What does my soul need?” Just ask, and wait quietly. Because we’re very good at fooling ourselves about how we’re doing, it might take several days of praying this question before we’re truly open and humble enough to know the answer.
-Ask God, every day, “What about my life makes you happy?” Yes, when God looks at your life, some parts of it—perhaps many aspects of it—bring joy to God’s heart. Think of how people close to you make you happy. God is in relationship with you, which means that your sins grieve God’s heart, but also that your growth and love and freedom and kindness bring joy to God of. Stick with this little prayer and keep listening.
-Tell God, and yourself, every day, “I want to be open to the graces of this Lenten season.” Maybe we are not as open and willing as we would like to be or think we should be. We can always open our lives a bit more, let go of more stuff, listen better, and do more quickly and passionately what we know helps nurture God’s kingdom on earth.
This last possibility confirms that keeping a “good Lent” does not necessarily mean not doing some thing(s) for 40 days and 40 nights. It may mean the converse - actually doing some things that we usually do not have the time or confidence to do. Most important of all, please do think about how you might approach Lent this year. If you would like to discuss it with me, then just let me know. I would be delighted to spend time with you.
Click here to view Year of Prayer 2018 document
The parish walking group met again on Wednesday 31 January and enjoyed a very interesting walk around Buxted Park before finishing with coffee and chat in the Rectory. We managed to avoid the wettest parts and were rewarded with the sight of a pair of herons. We will meet next on Wednesday 21 February at 10.30 outside St Mark’s church in Hadlow Down. Everybody is welcome to join us, we walk for around an hour and then finish with coffee and a chat.
If you would like to take part or to get more information please email Fr John or telephone 01825 733103
CHILDREN’S CHOIR. The Children’s Choir resumed on Tuesday 12 September. We meet every Tuesday during school term times for one hour from 16.00 at the Rectory, Church Road, Buxted. New and old members aged from 6-11 years are welcome. There is no charge and the aim is to have fun through singing. For more information contact her by clicking on Ella or telephoning 01825 733103