Happy Easter! Alleluia, Christ is risen! As these weeks of Easter unfold and we find ourselves still in isolation, strong emotions will simmer and surface for us. We can feel a bit helpless and perhaps even less confident than we did before as we remain disconnected from family and community.
Our minds can become overwhelmed by the ceaseless chatter of our own worries, what we take in from news reports and on top of that the anxieties of others.
I woke up with the birds this morning around 5am and my mind was immediately awhir, so I asked God to ease my head of all this unhelpful noise, especially as Iíve been having some migraines which I didnít want to return! These were the words that immediately flooded into my mind (along with the tune to this worship song)
Jesus, be the centre,
be my source be my light, Jesus.
Be the fire in my heart,
be the wind in these sails,
be the reason that I live
Thatís all it had taken to bring a positive mantra into my mind, which I could sing over and over again. In fact the next words are:
Jesus, be the centre, be my hope, be my song, Jesus.
Jesus meets us absolutely anywhere and the resurrection appearance story
of the Emmaus Road reinforces this as Jesus draws close to friends who donít initially recognise him. They think him a stranger, yet the words on the road had moved them, stirred something in their hearts and once recognised Ė now, only now the eyes of faith, blinded by doubt and sorrow and despair, could see again. As the night drew in, a new day was dawning and the darkness in which they had journeyed for three days rolled away.
Let us lift up our eyes above the mists of fear and anxiety, and see the Lord, the companion on every road.
A prayer for the journey
Risen Lord, open my eyes to see you as I walk on my daily path. Give me the vision to see your holiness in other people, your beauty in all that you have made. Guide me, teach me, enlighten me, until the night is at hand, and as this life darkens let me see you in a greater light.
Mission Statement for Holy Cross: a cornerstone in the community,
seeking faithfully to love and serve God and our neighbours
both near and far
Sunday Diary for 10.00am Ďliveí Worship
03 May All Ages Together
Acts 2.42-end, John 10.1-10, Psalm 23
10 May Christian Aid Week begins
Acts 7.55-end, John 14.1-14, Psalm 31.1-5, 15-16 (subject to change with CA)
17 May Sixth Sunday of Easter
Acts 17.22-31, John 14.15-21, Psalm 66.7-end
24 May Seventh Sunday of Easter
Acts 1.6-14, John 17.1-11, Psalm 68.1-10
31 May Pentecost Sunday or Whit Sunday
Acts 2.1-21, John 20.19-23 or John 7.37-39, Psalm 104.26-36
07 June All Ages Together Environment Sunday
2 Corinthians 13.11-end, Matthew 28.16-20, Psalm 8
You may find resources at home to help you at times of prayer and worship; such as a lit candle, a cross or an image of Jesus.
Thursday 21 May Evening Prayer at 7pm THY KINGDOM COME
Wednesdays at 11am Ways to Pray
We made such a difference together last year. Will you stand with us again? As this virus spreads across the world, love rises up in response. Youíve already shown incredible kindness to your neighbours. Now is the time to reach out to your neighbours both near and far.
Your love protects. From storms, from drought, and now from coronavirus. Your love protects our global neighbours battling the spread of this illness. Your love protects. With soap, clean water and medical supplies.
By supporting us this Christian Aid Week, you can reach out and protect more of your neighbours today.
Virtual fundraisers - Itís more important than ever that we come together as a community to worship and to share fun and fellowship. Thatís why during Christian Aid Week we will be live-streaming worship each day, and hosting a fun daily quiz to join and raise funds. Links on Christian Aid website.
Here are a few words to introduce myself. My name is Chris Chalmers.
I am from Birmingham and left school at 16 to become a Mechanical Production engineer through completing an apprenticeship. Some years later I went into teaching Design Technology in secondary schools, both in the UK and USA. On returning to the UK and after much encouragement I entered the discernment process for ordination. I have been working through a part-time three year training course at Queens Theological College. At the same time I have been involved with Christ Church Selly Parkís different ministries.
I have a lovely husband and three grown up children, with my dad and three sisters living locally. I like walking, barn dancing and meeting people. My weakness is homemade cherry & fruit or lemon cake.
I live in, and have served a placement at, St Laurence Northfield parish of South West Birmingham.
I have found over the years that a sense of humour and gentle honesty with myself has kept me going when lifeís experiences become hard going.
I am really looking forward to getting to know you over the coming months and pray for you in these troubled times.
Chris will initially be coming to Holy Cross as a Lay Worker during the summer with Ordination as Deacon to take place at Michaelmas, late September. Please pray for Chris as she completes her training at Queenís and begins her curacy, both endings and beginnings are in a state of flux due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but are securely held in Godís care.
We also look forward later in the year to receiving Janet Stewart, a Reader in Training for a five week Placement at Holy Cross. Janet serves and worships at Knowle Parish Church.
Call on the Vicar for any pastoral assistance,
Revd Debbie Collins will be happy to speak with you. 0121 608 7742
The local Pantry at Yardley Wood Baptist Church continues to meet the needs of our local community, which includes Billesley. During the current crisis, food donations are dwindling and as I volunteer on Mondayís with our Ecumenical neighbours, I have seen this first hand with Fare Share deliveries much lighter in content and the local need and demands are greater than ever before. Can you help? If you can donate any food items, toiletries or household products please let me know and I will arrange to collect them from you safely. Revd Debbie
Churches, such as Holy Cross would usually be offering food donations on a regular basis to help the local community and if this is something you can help towards please be in touch with Debbie, the Vicar.