Today Father Martin was officiating at St. James, Clacton so Father Mervyn celebrated and preached. Although we did not keep the anniversary of 9/11 formally, the hymns, the Gospel with the Parable of the Unforgiving Steward were strangely appropriate. During the Intercessions we remembered those who were still suffering as a result of 9/11 and all those who had died.
In his sermon Father Mervyn related how Corrie ten Boom a Dutch woman, the author of the well known book “No Hiding Place had been incarcerated by the Nazis together with her sister Betsie who had died as a result of her ill-treatment. Corrie survived and was released and after the war toured Europe and the United States talking and lecturing mainly in churches. It was at one of these meetings that she saw in the congregation one of her former guards at the concentration camp at Ravensbruck.
After the meeting, she stood outside the church she saw her former guard, walking towards her, beaming with delight; he thanked her for her message saying how pleased he had been to hear her say that through Jesus all our sins are forgiven The he stretched out his hand to shake hers. She drew back; what was she to do?
She had often spoken to others about the need to forgive, now found herself in a position where it seemed impossible for her to do so. She tried to respond to his smile, tried to raise her hand to his, but was unable to do so. And then she breathed a silent prayer: "Lord, I can't forgive; give me your forgiveness." And something quite extraordinary happened: she felt empowered to take his hand in hers and as she did so, experienced love for this man who had once treated her and her sister so appallingly.
Father Mervyn pointed out that today’s Gospel in effect challenged us to forgive: to forgive those who had carried out the dreadful events of 9/11; to forgive those who had carried out other terrorist attacks and, of course, to forgive those who offended us. And to do so not once or twice but seventy time seven.
BUILDINGS COMMITTEE 12th NOVEMBER
The Committee will meet following the 7.30 p.m.Mass according to the Book of Common Prayer in the Lady Chapel at approx. 8.00 p.m.
THE SACRAMENT OF CONFIRMATION
Please keep Katherine, Mark, Sky, Aaron and Billy in your prayers as the prepare for their Confirmation. Katherine will be Confirmed at St. Edward’s Church on Sunday 18th September. The other candidates will be confirmed at St. Augustine’s on Sunday 25th September at 6.39 p.m.
We will be celebrating Harvest Festival at the Parish Mass at 10.00 a.m. on Sunday 25th September.
This year the HARVEST SUPPER will be on Saturday 1st October. 7.00 p.m. for 7.30 p.m.
Choice of Tomato or Onion Soup
Bangers and Mash with Baked Beans (Gravy optional)
Fruit Pie or Apple Crumble with either custard, cream or ice cream.
TICKETS ARE NOW AVAILABLE AT £5 adults £3 children under 11