All posts by Peter Wells

Prayer Cycle for May

No. 101                                           May 2021

This month our special focus is on St Pauls, St Nicholas Embroolk and Woosehill

Please pray for:

Rector:                                   Reverend Richard Lamey
Associate Priests:           Reverend Jane Kraft and Reverend Judi Hattaway
Assistant Curate:           Reverend Cara Smart
Woosehill Methodist Minister:   Reverend Soba Sinnathamby
Methodist Lay Preacher: Doreen Murgatroyd
Parish Administrator:        Louise Cole
Churchwardens (St Paul’s): Peter Wells, David Ruddock
Pro-Wardens (St Nick’s): Liz Gallagher and Fiona Albinson
Woosehill Stewards:          John Hoskins and Steve Lewis
PCC Treasurer:                      Lyn Austen
PCC Secretary:                      Lesley Ruddock
Woosehill Council Secretary: Emma Wells
Woosehill Treasurer:          Lynne Paine

At St Pauls and St Nicholas, please pray for:

  • All those who are preparing for their baptisms, for the welcome they will receive and for their lifelong journey with Christ.
  • Those who are getting married this year, for the couples whose weddings have been postponed and for those who are newly engaged.  We pray that their lives may be filled with love for each other, those around them and for God.
  • Wisdom and discernment as we listen to God and one another when working out how best to serve the community as we emerge from lockdown.
  • For all who minister and worship across the parish, that there will be moments of rest and relaxation after this past year.
  • All who are grieving the loss of a loved one or have not been able to attend funerals of those they mourn, that they will know God’s comfort.

At Woosehill, please pray for:

  • Those leading us at this difficult socially distanced time.
  • Ourselves as we remember some things we used to do before the lockdowns which may not come back and other things we need to start doing or do differently in response to the needs of community and the congregation.
  • The staff & stewards who are committed to spending the time between March and August, together with members of the congregation, to position ourselves ready for the Autumn and for new opportunities which are all around us,
  • Rediscovery of our purpose and our joy, reminding ourselves what is special about worshipping at Woosehill and being part of an LEP.
  • The process of managing the transition from where we are now back to a more relaxed and more familiar world.

In the Deanery, please pray for:

  • The recruitment of a new Family Worker at St Michael’s, Sandhurst and for Angela Harper as she moves away.
  • All our parishes as we celebrate Ascension Day and Pentecost.

God our Father

For the Spirit of Peace
that calms our mind
and stills our life,
we give you thanks.
For the Spirit of Love
that touches hearts
and reaches out,
we give you thanks.
For the Spirit of Joy
that lifts our soul
and gives us faith
we give you thanks.
For the Spirit of Power,
that gift of grace
for this your church,
we give you thanks.

Prayer Cycle for April

No. 100 April 2021

This month our special focus is on Wokingham All Saints.

Please pray for:

Rector: Reverend Canon David Hodgson

Associate Priest: Reverend Hannah Higginson (on maternity leave)

Honorary Priest: Reverend Colin James

Authorised Lay Preacher: John Boylan

Churchwardens: Clive Charlton, Alun James

PCC Treasurer: Anne King

Parish Administrator & PCC Secretary: Jane Hodgson

In the Parish, please pray for:

  • For all who worship at All Saints Church
  • The Spaceforall project to revitalise the church building and provide a community space.
  • Mission and outreach in the new housing estates in the parish
  • Becky Medlicott preparing for ordination in the summer coming to All Saints as a curate-in-training.
  • Chrispen Gumbs ordinand in training on placement at All Saints.

In the Deanery, please pray for:

  • All our churches and especially those which have been worshipping online as they begin to open up again for worship in church.
  • Our keeping of Good Friday.
  • Our celebration of Easter Day.
  • St Pauls and Woosehill Churches as they return to in-person worship for Holy Week, and for all of the conversations around which activities to re-start and when to re-start them – that we will be guided by the Spirit to know what to pick up and which new opportunities and moments we should pursue.
  • Those who have been most badly affected by the last 12 months, giving thanks for those who have been so selfless and generous during these last weeks.
  • Woosehill Church, a long established. single congregation Local Ecumenical Partnership in the Parish of St Paul, Wokingham where 2021 is going to be a time of change, adjustment and reflection for every part of society and every Church. Woosehill has seen a change in ordained leadership, some people have moved away over the last 18 months and others have changed their Church. We have committed to undertaking a thorough review of our activities over the coming months and ask your prayers during this process.
  • St John the Baptist Crowthorne as we return to worship in Church on Easter Sunday, but also for all those who will miss the videoed services.

In our country, our leaders and ourselves:

  • For wisdom for our leaders as they continue to plan and monitor the easing of restriction
  • That we will all behave responsibly to stop the spread of the virus.
  • Giving thanks for the continuing role out of the vaccine and all that it means to each of us in our community life.
  • Continuing to remember all those who have lost their lives as a result of Covid 19 and those who mourn their loss

In the world please pray:

  • For those working on new vaccines and those refining the existing vaccines particularly as the virus mutates.

When everything was dark
and it seemed that the sun would never shine again,
your love broke through.

Your love was too strong
too wide,
too deep
for death to hold.

The sparks cast by your love
dance and spread
and burst forth
with resurrection light.

by the Revd Michaela Youngson.

Prayer Cycle for March

No. 99 March 2021

This month we continue with our focus on all Parishes in the Deanery as we begin to emerge from our third Lockdown.

In our Deanery, please pray for:

  • All our Churches, our clergy, and people
  • Our keeping of the season of Lent
  • Lent groups for our fellowship and our learning as we study together virtually.
  • Mothering Sunday Services in whatever form they take.
  • Palm Sunday Services
  • Holy week services as we prepare to celebrate Easter Day.

In our communities, please pray for:

  • Our keeping to the plan for our progress out of Lockdown and that we will continue to respect sensible rules to keep us all safe.
  • The recovery of all the NHS staff who are worn out having worked so tirelessly in hospitals and in the community over the past year.

In the wider world we pray:

  • That the wealthier countries will make supplies of the COVID-19 vaccine more available to the poorer countries

We give thanks for:

  • The role out of the vaccines and for the efficient way the services have worked together, and the protection it is giving us.
  • The numbers of people applying to train as nurses, inspired by what they have seen of the NHS during the Pandemic,
  • Signs of spring all around us in the snowdrops, crocuses, daffodils and the song of the birds.

Ever present God,
be with us in our isolation,
be close to us in our distancing,
be healing to us in our sickness,
be light in our darkness,
be wisdom in our confusion,
be all that is familiar when all is unfamiliar,
that when the doors re-open
we may with the zeal of Pentecost
inhabit our communities.
and speak of your goodness.
to an emerging world.
For Jesus’ sake. AmenVery Rev’d Andrew Nunn

Prayer Cycle for January

No 97 January 2021

This month our special focus is on the Parish of Winnersh, St Mary the Virgin and St Catherine Bearwood.

Please pray for:         

Interim Priest in Charge                                     Rev’d James Warren
Priest with PTO:                                                      Rev’d Clifford Smith
Church Warden                                                       Debbie Brunt
Assistant Church Warden – St Mary’s        Anne Warner
Assistant Church Warden – St Catherine’s Joanne Brown
PCC Secretary:                                                        Alison Vacher
Parish Administrator                                            Samantha Robson-Hurst
PCC Treasurer                                                         Derek Manning

In the Parish, please pray:

  • For all involved in the ‘ Next Steps ‘ process of the Parish engagement in discerning ways to better resource and sustain ministry and mission in the future; working towards July 2021 when James Warren will have completed his 3year period of Interim Ministry. 
  • That God’s blessing will rest on the planning committee for the celebrations.in April 2021 to mark 175 years since the consecration of St Catherine’s and for all those who we hope will attend

In the Deanery, please pray for:

  • Our Churches and our worship and fellowship whether we are able to continue worshiping in our Church buildings or on-line through live streaming, video or sound cloud.
  • Those with technical skills who continue to provide these online services and resources.
  • All meetings, business and social held on Zoom or other on-line resources.
  • All who feel side-lined because they do not have the technological knowledge or resources to engage in this way.

In the wider community, please pray:

  • That we will all act responsibly obeying the rules whether we are in Tier 4 or Lockdown.
  • For the lonely that we will keep in contact with them so that they know they are not forgotten
  • For the effects of the pandemic on all our lives, our NHS and the financial state of the country.
  • For all sick with the Covid 19 virus and for those caring for them in hospital or at home.
  • And give thanks for the vaccine and all who have to organise and administer its role out.
  • About the effects of Brexit on our trade and movement round Europe.
  • For those we miss who have died in the past year, that they may Rest in Peace. and Rise in Glory

God our Father, when the earth shakes and the nations are in uproar,
speak, and let the storm be still, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Prayer Cycle for December

No. 96 December 2020

In our Deanery let us give thanks:

  • That we shall be able to hold Christmas services in Church.
  • For those with technical skills who continue to provide online services and resources.

In our Churches please pray for:

  • Advent Online’, that it may bless all who engage with the resources made available in many ways and find the daily offerings enriching and helpful in deepening our faith.
  • The message of hope that is Christmas, will be an encouragement to all.
  • All those attending Services whether in Church and those continuing to feel safer watching online or listening to recordings
  • The families who are staying away from Church for fear of spreading the virus to older members of the congregation.
  • All Christingle, Crib Services and Nativity plays in Church and online throughout the Deanery; that the sense of joy, sparkle and wonder may be felt and special memories made.
  • Services of Nine Lessons and Carols
  • Midnight Mass and Christmas Day Services
  • Continued creativity even though many of us are tired and weary with all we have had to cope with in the last months.
  • Fun activities including the Arborfield Christmas Mince Pie Evening on 3 December on Zoom
  • The fun and fellowship of the Zoom Coffee and chat sessions
  • Hardship funds and Food banks seeking to give assistance to those most in need at this time
  • All who have been bereaved this year, especially for those who are anxious about their first Christmas alone. That they may know your comforting presence holding them safe and steady.

In our country please pray for:

  • All in government and all scientists seeking for a way through the pandemic.
  • Ourselves that as restrictions are eased over Christmas, we will behave responsibly and continue to observe social distancing and all other measures for the protection of all.
  • And give thanks for positive news of vaccines to protect us from the virus.

Lord of heaven and earth,
as Jesus taught his disciples to be persistent in prayer,
give us patience and courage never to lose hope,
but always to bring our prayers before you,
though Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
From Daily Prayer SSF

Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives
and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
The Collect for Advent Sunday

Lord Jesus Christ, your birth at Bethlehem
draws us to kneel in wonder at heaven touching earth:
accept our heartfelt praise
as we worship you,
our Saviour and our eternal God.
The Collect for Christmas Day

Prayer Cycle for November

No.95 November 2020

This month our special focus is on the Parish of Wargrave with Knowl Hill

Please pray for:
Vicar:                                      Rev’d John Cook
Curates:                                 Rev’d Hugh Barne and Rev’d Steve Turville
Lay Minister:                         Andy Ferguson
Church Wardens:                Peter Mayes and Ian Matthews
Administration Manager:    Lucy Bowley
Communications Manager: Rosalyn Lane Heath

In the Parish please pray for:    

  • Wisdom and Godliness as we navigate these uncertain times faithfully, making the most of every opportunity
  • Our planning for a creative approach in our outreach into the community this Christmas that Jesus will be made known and people drawn to him in obedience and faith.
  • Planning for changes to the service pattern from the 1st November alongside restarting our Sunday Club, that this will encourage families to return to Sunday worship

In the Deanery please pray for:

  • The Parish of Winnersh  – St Mary the Virgin and St Catherines for wisdom and discernment for those in Archdeaconry, Deanery and Parish roles discussing the future of ministry when Rev’d James Warren (Interim Priest In Charge) moves on in 2021 – that the most appropriate structures and resources may be employed in a time of national crisis.
  • Woosehill Church –two Steward/Wardens elected at the recent AGM and that two people will volunteer to share the work with them.
  • Services for All Souls as we remember and celebrate the lives of those who have died.
  • Remembrance Sunday as we are unable to meet together for this service, that we will still be able to mark the day to honour those who gave their lives in wars and conflicts.
  • Those who are not physically able to get to Church and those who work hard on the technical side of things to make sure that they are still included and part of our Church community.
  • Those who are isolated and alone and having to cope week after week without their normal clubs and groups.
  • All in education, especially those in senior leadership facing impossible decisions.
  • Teachers in school and lecturers in colleges and universities working under pressures and limitations.

In our nation and the wider church please pray for:

  • In Oxford Diocese, Slough as it moves into Tier Two restrictions on Saturday 24th October.
  • Archbishop Stephen Cottrell as he takes up his post in York at such a difficult time.
  • Politicians, scientists and health professionals and all who are seeking to bring the Covid Pandemic under control.
  • Those working on vaccines and all volunteers testing these vaccines.

Prayer Cycle for October

No. 94 October 2020

EAB9YJ St Andrew’s Church, High Street, Sonning-On-Thames, Berkshire, England, United Kingdom

This month our special focus is on the Parish of Sonning, Charvil and Sonning Eye

Please pray for:

Vicar:                                      Rev’d Jamie Taylor
Associate Vicar:                   Revd Kate Wakeman Toogood
Youth Minister:                     Chris West
LLM:                                       Bob Peters
Church Wardens:                Perry Mills, Stuart Bowman
Deputy Wardens:                 Molly Woodly, Sue Peters, Mark Jordan
Administrator and Sec:    Hilary Rennie
Treasurer:                              Richard Moore

In the Parish please pray for:

  • The Sunday Services now at 930am and all who come to worship
  • The youth and children’s ministry leaders as we seek to restore and rebuild after the Covid lockdown
  • all the members of our pensioners’ lunch club ‘Rendezvous’, unable to meet together since March

In the Deanery please pray for:

  • All Churches as we have re-opened for public worship and private prayer
  • Those responsible for making our Churches safe places to worship
  • The ongoing safety and co-ordination of our socially distanced services in our church building.
  • Those unable to attend that they may still be able to connect with and feel a valued part of our congregation.
  • All children, young people and those working in schools, colleges and universities as lecturers, teachers and support staff that they will be protected.
  • For the children and families in the deanery, as our churches restart activities, and continue to make children welcome in new and different ways, and for wisdom and discernment as we work out the best way to support and encourage the faith of our young people.
  • For all who have being ordained deacon at this time in the Oxford Diocese, particularly for Cara Smart, ordained deacon on 26th September and for all at St Paul’s Wokingham, St Nicholas and Woosehill, where Cara will serve her curacy.
  • For Rev’d Soba Sinnathamby, welcomed as the new Methodist minister to the circuit and to Woosehill Church, and for our ongoing and close relationship with the Methodist Churches and the enrichment that brings to our faith.

Nationally, please pray for:

  • The government as they are forced to introduce stricter measures to bring the spread of the virus under control.

Prayer in as we travel on:

            Lord Jesus Christ, light of this world, thank you for the hope you have given us.
Help us to give our worries to you and, above all, to trust in your unfailing love.
For you have promised us “Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.”
Almighty God, our protector, let us trust in you to carry us through this time of uncertainty.
Jesus, hear our cries as we mourn those who’ve lost.
Whatever tomorrow may bring, we will praise your name. 

Amen.

Prayer Cycle for September

No. 93 September 2020

This month we continue to pray for all the churches, schools, and communities in our deanery.

Please pray for:

  • The churches in our deanery, our Area Dean, all clergy, ministry teams and those responsible for making our churches safe for worship
  • The simpler form which our services now take and for those who mourn the loss of singing.
  • Those who find the wearing of face masks during worship difficult and uncomfortable.
  • Churches where the size and structure of the building makes it difficult to accommodate more than a small number of people for worship at a social distance, that solutions will be found.
  • Sides people and Welcome teams responsible for making sure that social distancing is observed in church and that we will courteously observe the rules.
  • Those responsible for cleaning the churches after services and other activities..
  • Business and social meetings which have to continue to be held on Zoom.
  • Our children and young people whose Sunday Schools and Youth Groups may have been disrupted during Lockdown.
  • Wisdom to discern ways in which we can continue to reach out to those outside our usual worshipping community who joined us in our video and live-streamed services,
  • Those still shielding and feeling sad because they feel so isolated.
  • All who still do not feel safe to return to church attendance, that they will still be able to access services streamed, videoed or recorded.
  • Those who are still ill or with the viral aftermath of Covid 19, facing long weeks of limitation and exhaustion.
  • Our schools as they reopen,
  • Head teachers with responsibility for making decisions to keep everyone feeling safe and secure.
  • Teachers who may feel anxious and vulnerable in the classroom
  • Pupils of all ages, that they will understand the need for social distancing and will observe the instructions they are given for their safety.
  • Pupils in years 10 – 13 as they prepare for exams and catch up on lessons missed during lockdown.
  • Young people as they prepare for work or to go to university.
  • Finchampstead and California in the continuing exercise to finalise the Parish Profile and start the appointment process for a new incumbent.

Please give thanks for:

  • The beauty of the natural world around us
  • The patience and understanding shown by so many people over the last months.

In the wider world please continue to pray for:

  • The world leaders, that the advice they receive may lead them to make the right decisions to bring the spread of the Corona virus under control.
  • Those in leadership in our country, the Government, all our MPs and local politicians and for the scientists and other advisors.
  • Those working to develop a reliable vaccine and those volunteering to test the vaccine.. 

An alternative Collect for the Tenth Sunday after Trinity in Daily Prayer SSF.

“Lord of heaven and earth,
as Jesus taught his disciples to be persistent in prayer,
give us patience and courage never to lose hope,
but always to bring our prayers before you;

though Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Prayer Cycle for August

No. 92 August 2020

This month we continue to pray for all the churches and communities in our deanery as following the easing of restrictions we are able to re-open our Churches for public worship and are able to move around more freely.

Please pray for:

  • The individual churches in our deanery, our Area Dean, all clergy, ministry teams and PCCs.
  • The teams of people who have given many hours carrying out risk assessments in preparation for us to resume worship in church, so that everything can be done safely and reverently in these new circumstances.
  • Churches where the size and structure of the building makes it difficult to accommodate more than a small number of people for worship at a social distance, that solutions will be found.
  • Welcome teams responsible for making sure that social distancing is observed in church.
  • Those responsible for cleaning the churches after services.
  • Those who will not feel safe to return to church attendance and will miss services being streamed or videoed.
  • Business and social meetings which have to continue to be held on Zoom.
  • Our children and young people whose Sunday Schools and Youth Groups may have been disrupted during Lockdown.
  • Wisdom to discern ways in which we can continue to reach out to those outside our usual worshipping community who joined us in our video and live-streamed services,
  • A continuing sensitivity to the needs of all around us, particularly all carers and those living alone.
  • Those who are still ill or with the viral aftermath of Covid 19, facing long weeks of limitation and exhaustion.
  • Cara Smart and her family as they move to Emmbrook as she joins the staff team at St Paul’s Wokingham and for her preparation to be ordained deacon in September.
  • Julie and David Ramsbottom as they retire to Oxfordshire.
  • Our use this autumn of the document ‘EMERGING FROM CORONAVIRUS – A tool to aid reflection’.

Please give thanks:

  • That there can now be weddings and baptisms in Church once more – that those special days will be blessed and joyous.
  • For the patience and understanding shown by so many people over the last months.

In the wider world please continue to pray for:

  • The world leaders, that the advice they receive may lead them to make the right decisions to bring the spread of the Corona virus under control.
  • Those in leadership in our country, the Government, all our MPs and local politicians and for the scientists and other advisors.

All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing be well. 
Julian of Norwich

Prayer Cycle for July

No. 91 July 2020

This month we continue to focus is on the world, the church, and our communities as we adjust to changes in our lives brought about by the Corona Pandemic 

Please pray for:

  • The world leaders, that the advice they receive may lead them to make the right decisions to bring the spread of the Corona virus under control.
  • Those in leadership in our country, the Government, all our MPs and local politicians and for the scientists and other advisors.
  • All those who are sick with the virus and those recovering especially those with serious post Covid fatigue, that they will regain their health and strength.
  • Those grieving, particularly for those who were not able to say goodbye to a loved one face to face and hand to hand
  • Medical and nursing staff continuing to work sacrificially, in hospitals, nursing and care homes and local surgeries.
  • Those looking for fresh ways of treating the virus to reduce its impact.
  • Scientists working on vaccines and for those involved in the testing for safety and effectiveness.
  • All key workers, pharmacists, home carers, teachers, childcare providers, shop workers, delivery drivers, and all involved in keeping those of us at home safe and supported. That they will be kept safe and well and that we show them our appreciation.
  • Those people who are still uncertain about going outside, and all those who long to go outside but are obliged to stay at home for their own safety and the safety of those they are shielding.
  • That in these difficult times we might be a people who are sensitive to needs of all around us, particularly all carers and those living alone, that as we serve our local community we will always be looking for ways to share with others the love we share in Jesus
  • The many who have lost their employment and business opportunities due to the virus and those who fear that they may do so in the coming weeks,
  • The Churches in our Deanery, Bishop: Olivia Graham, Area Dean: Richard Lamey. the ministry teams and congregations as our churches start to open up for private prayer and some public worship and for all working to make sure that all is done to ensure the safety of those attending.
  • That we will listen to the voice and will of God in this crisis and respond to the new things we have discovered in these last months with courage, compassion and prayer.
  • Give thanks for the expertise and creativity for all who are contributing to video and streamed of services and meetings and for those keeping us in touch through newsletters and e-mails.
  • That way will be found to continue to use the technology so that people who do not feel confident to return to worship in church because of age or health issues can still be included.
  • Wisdom to discern ways in which we can continue to reach out to those outside our usual worshipping community who have joined us in our video and live-streamed services,
  • For those members of our churches are not able to use technology, that they will still receive pastoral care and not be forgotten.
  • Schools as they re-open, pupils, teachers and support staff.
  • All young people who have been missing out on school for the past three months, especially those who should have taken exams this summer and those who will be working towards important exams next year.
  • Parents home schooling their children.
  • David Wails, James Furlong, Joe Richie Bennett – victims of the Forbury Gardens stabbing – may they rest in peace,
  • The Holt school and all staff, students and counsellors following the stabbing of the much respected and loved teacher James Furlong.  

Give thanks for:

  • The beauty of the world around us.
  • The freedom to spend time in our gardens and parks and the countryside on our walks.

Ever present God,
be with us in our isolation,
be close to us in our distancing,
be healing to us in our sickness,
be light in our darkness,
be wisdom in our confusion,
be all that is familiar when all is unfamiliar,
that when the doors reopen
we may with the zeal of Pentecost
inhabit our communities
and speak of your goodness
to an emerging world.
For Jesus’ sake. Amen

            Very Rev’d Andrew Nunn

Let Nothing Disturb You

Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.

St. Teresa of Avila

All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing be well. 

                                                                                                Julian of Norwich