Letter to parishioners, 14 August 2020

Friday, 14 August 2020

Dear Friends in Christ,

As we approach the third Sunday in August, I am delighted to say that our new Covid-compliant pattern of services is established.  Services have taken place in both Corby Glen and Irnham and have been well attended.  I know that it feels strange to have to ‘book’ your place at a service, but many have already got into the swing of doing this.  As the emails and phone calls have come in during this week, I can already see a rise in the numbers wishing to attend.  This is great news and encourages me to look forward with greater optimism. 

Having established a simple pattern of weekly services I have started thinking about the times that lie ahead.  The general feeling is that the current situation could go on for many months and so it is important that we do not forget that we are approaching landmark moments in the year.  The first of these will be our celebration of Harvest.  In our rural communities Harvest carries a much greater significance than it is often afforded in more urban areas of the country.  For us it is about celebrating and giving thanks for God’s bounty in the environment in which we live out our daily lives.  It is also about giving thanks for the skill and dedication of all who work in the agricultural industry. 

This year we will not be able to have large gatherings in our churches or take part in village lunches or suppers.  However, it is vital that we do gather in thanks and praise.  To this end, I will be conducting two outdoor Harvest Festival services.  The first will be at 4pm on Sunday, 13th September in Irnham, and the second will be at 4pm on Sunday, 20th September in Corby Glen.  Although these services are still a month away, I wanted to give you enough notice to clear your diaries and make sure that we can celebrate this great moment in the agricultural and the ecclesiastical year in a spirit of community joy and thanksgiving.

As well as bringing you news of how we will be celebrating Harvest this year I wanted to remind you that our website is still very much alive.  There are many who are not able to join us in public worship for whom this remains an essential link to the life of their churches.  As well as tuning in yourselves, please encourage others to join us for the Daily Prayers, Sunday Worship, Sermons and Reflections that are available through

This week I would also like to ask for your prayers.  So many of the couples who were due to be married in 2020 have seen their plans disrupted in an unprecedented way.  Please hold them in your prayers.  But, I would also ask your prayers for Kieran and Hannah who will be married in St Andrew’s Church, Irnham on 15th August.  Despite all the problems and obstacles they still want to take that great step of becoming man and wife and, so, I ask you to pray for them and their life together in the years to come.

Finally, could I remind you to email me or phone me if you would like to attend our Sunday services.  This week they are at 9am and 10.30am in St John’s Church, Corby Glen.  I look forward to seeing you there.

With every blessing to you all,

Revd Stephen