9th July 2020
Having written a long letter last week, this week’s message is brief in comparison and, as things unfold, whilst I will remain in touch to keep you informed, it is unlikely that I will be writing on a weekly basis, from now on, although I am aware that some of you like to receive Lectionary Readings, so I will give this some thought…
On Sunday 19th July, we will be holding our first church service in the Benefice since the beginning of the lockdown. This will be a short Holy Communion Service at Orsett Church at 10am. Please be aware that, at this stage, no singing is allowed and that social distancing and the necessary precautions will be in place. If this works efficiently, the plan is to hold weekly United Benefice services alternating between Orsett and Horndon so, all being well, the following week, on 26th July, the service will be at Horndon. Because of the small size of Bulphan Church and the fact that it is not possible to introduce a one-way system, Sunday services will not be held at Bulphan at this present time. However, Bulphan Church will continue to be open for individual private prayer on Monday and Thursday mornings between 10am and 12.00, along with Horndon on Tuesday and Saturday mornings, also from 10am until 12.00.
Having a booking system for church services seems contrary to the ethos of being welcoming, particularly to newcomers. However, it would be helpful if you could let me know whether you intend to come to church on 19th and how many members of your household this might include. Please could you also let me know if, at this stage, you don’t feel ready to come back to church so that we can plan accordingly; my contact details are at the top of this letter. If you are coming, you may wish to bring your own bible, to follow the readings as our pew bibles have been put away for the time being.
This Sunday will be our last online service in its present form, as we begin returning to church. However, I am considering how we might be able to record or livestream our church services in the future so that those of you who are not comfortable or able to return to public worship might still be able to share in the worship. I will keep you informed about progress which will require some thought as none of our churches currently have wifi. At the moment we will continue the livestreamed Morning and Evening Prayer and it is hoped that we may be able to continue some of these services in the future and, again, I will keep you informed, in due course, as to when and how often we might be able to do this.
Our online service this Sunday, as mentioned in last week’s letter, will celebrate The Mission to Seafarers when we remember the work of our dear friend, Glyn Jones, their former Secretary General. If you would like to make a donation to the Mission to Seafarers, you can click on,
You can also find out about The Mission to Seafarers Sunday Online Service at
With regard to the foodbank, needs this week include savoury treats for adults ie cheese biscuits, cream crackers or savoury biscuits, breakfasat bars, cheese twirls, breadsticks etc and they are also short of tinned rice. sponge puddings, tinned fruit (preferably not peaches), custard and jelly.
The Lectionary Readings for this week, beginning 13th July, are
|DAY||Morning Prayer||Evening Prayer|
|Monday 13th||Psalm: 98; 1 Samuel 1: 1-20 Luke 19: 28-40||Psalm: 105; Ezekiel 1: 1-14; 2 Cor 1: 1-14|
|Tuesday 14th||Psalm: 106; 1 Samuel 1: 21-2.11; Luke 19: 41-end||Psalm: 107; Ezekiel 1: 15-2.2 2 Cor 1: 15-2.4|
|Wednesday 15th||Psalm: 111; 1 Samuel 2: 12-26 Luke 20: 1-8||Psalm: 119: 129-152; Ezekiel 2: 3 – 3.11; 2 Cor 2: 5-end|
|Thursday 16th Osmund, bishop, 1099||Psalm: 115; 1 Samuel 2: 27-end; Luke 20: 9-19||Psalm: 116; Ezekiel 3: 12-end 2 Cor 3|
|Friday 17th||Psalm: 139; 1 Samuel 3: 1 – 4.1a; Luke 20: 20-26||Psalm: 130; Ezekiel 8 2 Cor 4|
|Saturday 18th||Psalm: 121; 1 Samuel 4.1b-end; Luke 20: 27-40||Psalm: 118; Ezekiel 9 2 Cor 5|
Don’t forget you can also access Daily Hope, a free phone line of hymns, reflections and prayers, on 0800 8048044.
Local prayer needs this week include Nicola, Hazel, Dave, Steve, Steve, Jane, Dawn and Roy. Please pray for those affected by the crane collapse on the houses in Bow. And, of course, we remember all those whose lives are lived on God’ s great oceans and we give thanks for the work and inspiration of The Mission to Seafarers and pray for all agencies who work amongst seafarers. You may like to use the following prayer in your personal devotions.
Lord God, Creator of land and sea, bless those who work at sea. Be with them in fair weather and foul, in danger or distress. Strengthen them when weary, lift them up when down and comfort them when far from their loved ones. In this life, bring them safely to shore and, in the life to come, welcome them to your kingdom. For Jesus Christ’s sake, Amen. (From the Mission to Seafarers).
Thank you, so much, to all of you who during the past 4 months, have faithfully kept an eye on the Churches in the Benefice, tended the churchyards, phoned parishioners, delivered letters, cakes and shopping to others, assisted with readings and prayers for our online services and Max, with talks, and, more recently, thank you to those who have helped with risk assessments and cleaning in preparation for reopening. And, of course, your continued great support for Thurrock Foodbank, who anticipate an increased demand for the foreseeable future is greatly appreciated.
As ever, please continue to let me know about any prayer or pastoral needs and be assured of my prayers for all of you.
Take care and God bless,