‘All nations shall serve him‘
A very warm welcome to all
The Epiphany (also 2nd Sunday after Christmas)
Readings: Isaiah 60: 1-6; Psalm 72: 1-7, 10-14; Ephesians 3: 1-12
Gospel: Matthew 2: 1-12
In today’s Gospel
I had a choice of whether to celebrate the Second Sunday after Christmas (which of course it is), or The Epiphany. I chose the latter. Our Gospel reading from Matthew gives us much food for thought. Longing and fear are the bookends on epiphany. At one end you have wise men from the East following the star. They’ve left their own country, the familiar, the usual, the known, in search of and desiring something new and maybe even unknown. They don’t know where this journey will take them, only that they have to take it. It’s as if there is a call on their lives that cannot be left unanswered. Who or what is calling is unknown. There is no caller ID with an epiphany. At the other end is Herod, the bookend of fear. “He was frightened,” Matthew tells us, “and all Jerusalem with him.” He is threatened by the possibility of a new king. His power and identity are at risk of being lost. Maybe he fears an impoverished and diminished life. He calls others to himself, chief priests and scribes, but he stays where he is, grasping and clinging to what is familiar and known.
On Sunday the 23rd of January there will be a Service of Christian Unity, and it is the turn of the Scottish Episcopal Church to host this. The service, which will be an Evensong, will take place here at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral at a time to be confirmed. It will be lead by Bishop Anne with representatives from the Roman Catholic and Church of Scotland Churches also contributing. There will hopefully be a substantial choir in place, which our Organist Matthew is currently arranging, and it is anticipated that there will be a fair number of visitors from all denominations in attendance. It is therefore important that we do our best to represent the Scottish Episcopal Church and to play a leading role in this most important of ecumenical gatherings.
I have had a few days off and I am not afraid to admit that I did not venture outside (apart from taking care of the dogs) during the whole period. Like most vocational roles that are very much in the public eye, there is a tendency, that when time off is taken, one eye is always looking ahead to what is coming in the near future and the deadlines that this creates. I tend to wax lyrical when asked ‘who would you give that task to?’, and my response tends to lean towards “If you want something doing, then ask a busy person”. I tend to get lots of things done when I have lots to do (if that makes sense!), and I know that this will work for many others, but not everyone. For those of you who are busy, then know that we appreciate your dedication and attention to the needs of those whom you provide to
St Mary’s Calendars
I am going to leave out our St Mary’s Calendars, which are still available and offered for sale at £8 each. I hope you will consider them as an ideal New Year present to a friend or a loved one. You can find them on the pew at the rear of the Church, the foyer, and in the Choir vestry. Please consider purchasing one (or more).
The quarterly Magazine is now available and can be viewed online by clicking on the following link to our website. https://stmaryscardenplace.org.uk/st-marys-magazine-christmas-2021/ Some hardcopies will be made available for those who do not use a computer. There is also a short Christmas message from myself which can be viewed by clicking on the following link. https://stmaryscardenplace.org.uk/notices/a-short-christmas-message-from-the-rectory/
I would like to draw you attention to our proposals for the Peace/Therapy Garden at the front of the Church. We have obtained some samples of ideas re what the garden could look like, and we (The Vestry) would value your opinion on what your preference might be. Please take some time to click on the following link where all will be revealed.https://stmaryscardenplace.org.uk/notices/west-end-garden-project/
You will find a calendar of events on our website at: https://stmaryscardenplace.org.uk/notices/st-marys-pro-cathedral-fundraising-and-social-events/ covering the next several months. We will also place a few of these event calendars around the church for your perusal and diaries.
Service of Memorial and Thanksgiving
I am looking at providing a service of memorial and thanksgiving for those who suffered loss during the height of the Corona Virus pandemic, and also to give thanks to the wonderful and dedicated members of our NHS who worked, and continue to do so, in the battle to keep on top of this devastating virus. I am hoping that it can be an ecumenical event with contributions from different faiths and denominations. Please watch this space.
St Mary’s AGM and Constitution Change
St Mary’s AGM will take place on Sunday the 6th of February 2022 and we are proposing to make a change to our Constitution. St Mary’s Constitution states that we must hold our AGM within three months of our financial year end, which is the 30th of September. We would like to extend this period to six months which effectively brings the Constitution line with what we have been doing for a number of years. The result of this is that we would be required to hold our AGM by 31st March as opposed to 31st December.
Services/Events at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral w/c Sunday the 2nd January 2022
Sunday 2nd January 2022 at 8am – Holy Communion (Cn Terry – 1970)
Sunday 2nd January at 10 am – The Epiphany and 2nd Sunday after Christmas Sung Eucharist (Cn Terry – 1982)
Monday 3rd January – Cn Terry – Day off
Tuesday 4th January at 10 am – Morning Prayer (Cn Terry)
Wednesday 5th January at 10 am – Said Eucharist (1970- Cn Terry)
Sunday 9th January at 8 am – Holy Communion (1970 – Cn Terry)
Sunday 9th January at 10 am – 1st Sunday after Epiphany – The Baptism of the Lord – Sung Eucharist (1982 – Cn Terry)
“All the great works of art, the cathedrals – the Gothic cathedrals and the splendid Baroque churches – are a luminous sign of God, and thus are truly a manifestation, an epiphany of God..”
(Pope Benedict XVI – Pope Emeritus)
Rev Canon Terry Taggart