Welcome to the website of the Mid-Trent Churches.
Please click on a heading listed on the left of this page to select a topic
 of interest to you.         Do enjoy your visit and come back again soon.

Bumps, boundaries
God's beautiful creation and wonderful promises.

People who live and work in the countryside have a particular connection with the land. Throughout my life …… in the village where I grew up, in my previous ministry in rural Warwickshire …… and perhaps especially this year, among the beautiful villages and countryside of Mid Trent …… I have always been struck by the beauty of God's creation, as summer begins each year.
Of course, I'm not a farmer, so I have the privilege of enjoying the beauty of the land, without all the hard work of taking care of it!

At some point during May each year, the church marks Rogation. This was traditionally a time when Christians prayed for God's blessing on the crops, land and farming work in their parishes. It was called "Rogation" from the Latin word for "asking", because the Bible reading for the day included the words, "Whatever you ask the Father in my name, he will give to you."

In the days before maps, Rogation prayers for the parish were often combined with "Beating the Bounds": walking the parish boundaries to remind everyone where they were, and to ask for God's blessing on their land and their work.
Sometimes a boundary stone or tree would be beaten, but traditionally the children of the parish were beaten, or bumped on the boundary stones or markers, to imprint the boundaries firmly on their memories!!!

Whatever else has changed in the world since those days, the Bible says that God's promises never change. Whatever our circumstances, there are times when all of us feel that we cannot continue in our own strength.
One day, when teaching the crowds gathered to hear him, Jesus said: "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me …... For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

The rural folk listening to Jesus would have known that a farmer often yoked together a strong, older and more experienced ox with a youngster. The older ox would bear the greatest load and the younger one would learn from him as they worked together.

Today, as we enjoy the glory of God's creation, let's remember that his promises never fail. We too can rely on Jesus to guide us and lighten our loads. We simply need to ask.

Yours in Christ

Our Team Curate  Message for March.
Welcome to the website of the Mid-Trent Churches.
Please click on a heading listed on the left of this page to select a topic
 of interest to you.         Do enjoy your visit and come back again soon.

from Reverend Philip Daniel - Many Thanks.

I'd like to personally thank you all for the wonderful gifts and cards that we have recieved. The wonderful gift we recieved from the whole team will be wisely used. We have been overwhelmed as a family by the love that we have been shown.
The final Team Service at Weston Village Hall on February 11
th will stay with us forever. We felt very blessed by it, and I repeat my thanks to all who made it possible.
It has been a true privilege to serve as Team Rector here for eleven years, and as your prayers are with me, so mine are with you.

Philip, Paola and family x.
March is here. We might even see some nice weather or is that wishful thinking?
I love to see the Spring flowers in bloom. Time for me to get out in the garden again and look after the plants. Some need pruning back because without that cutting back they will not be able to grow and flourish.  Others will need splitting as plants need room and space to prosper. Some may need replanting in a better sunnier position to grow.
This is what Lent is for. Gardening of the soul!  People tend to give up things for Lent but sometimes without really thinking "Why?". What's the point of giving up meat and eating fresh fish which is often more expensive? Why give up sweets and eat chocolate instead? David Adam, one-time Vicar of Lindisfarne, states very wisely that he is suspicious of people who say, "I do not smoke; I do not drink; I do not swear".  He asks "What do you do? How do you live life to the full? How do you achieve the glory you were created for?".
Just like those garden plants it may indeed be a time to cut away those bad habits, and give ourselves more space to grow and flourish, or even to be transplanted. We need to grow so that we become the person that God wants us to be.
Lent is that time when we seek to know Christ, ready to meet him, suffering on the Cross, and experience the power of his Resurrection at Easter.
It is a time when we need to do a bit of personal gardening to discover what God is calling us to do and to be: to spend time seeking out a space, away from the busy every day, to look at our lives, and determine which actions and habits are good and nourishing and which are choking our growth. The we need to act accordingly. Remember, all that pruning is only truly productive if it leads to growth and fullness of life.

Rev Vivienne Starkie
Team Curate.