“This week I spoke to the Taunton Team Chaplaincy at their Annual General Meeting at St James. The chaplaincy is going very well and there now 27 volunteer chaplains serving shops and businesses in the Taunton area. On 1st June the Bishop of Taunton, The Rt Revd Ruth Worsley, will visit the chaplaincy and see the work for herself. As a congregation, we support the chaplaincy work financially and practically.”
Thanks to all of you, the St. Mary’s Angels have won the Milsted Langdon Challenge Cup for the first time entrant raising the most money. They will be presented with the trophy at the Annual Swimathon Presentation Evening to be held at Cheddon Fitzpaine Village Hall on 28th April.
STUART TOWNEND CONCERT 22nd April and JAMES GALWAY CONCERT 29th April. Kate Cresswell is looking for volunteers to sell refreshments at these two first class concerts. If you are able to help please contact Kate or the Parish office.
JAMES GALWAY CONCERT 29TH April. There are still some tickets for sale. There are leaflets in the bookshop to say how they can be purchased. If you respond quickly and you say you are a member of STMM you will get priority, or you could volunteer as follows.
Signature Events: Our next trip is Wednesday 27th April. An all day outing from Exmouth to Barnstaple on the beautiful Tarka Line. This is a really lovely journey and not to be missed. We will need volunteers to drive, leaving Taunton at 8.30am. The train departs from Exmouth Station at 9.53am. Cost of the train ticket is £10.10 plus a contribution towards your driver’s fuel (we suggest approximately £4). As always, please “sign up” at the back of the church by Sunday 24th April. Further details from Margaret Allen.
“in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk” (v.6) RSV
For three years the disciples had been with Jesus and seen him heal the sick, cast out demons and raise the dead. While he was alive they started to do the same works themselves. First he sent out the Twelve on a mission (Matthew 10:5-8), and then he sent out the Seventy-Two (Luke 10:1-9). But now he had gone (in his physical form), and they were having to continue his ministry inspired by his Holy Spirit.
Jesus had told them they would be able to do the works he had done, and indeed they would do even greater works (John 14:12). However, it is not so easy to continue with the same confidence when the Master has gone. Yet the disciples did continue to do the works of Jesus. The Holy Spirit gave them the boldness and the confidence.
So here we have the story of the healing of the lame man who sat daily at the gate called Beautiful outside the Temple. Peter and John were on their way into the Temple to pray, but on this occasion they were prompted to stop and encounter the beggar. At first the man was not looking for, or believing in, healing; he wanted money. But Peter and John encouraged by the Spirit elicited faith and hope in him. They said the word: “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk” (v.6). They further encouraged the man by giving him a helping hand. The man responded in faith and obedience. He rose, walked and leaped in the air!
Now, it is essential to note how Peter explains how he had the authority to say the word. It was not because of his and John’s own “power of piety” (v.12). They were not special saints or innately gifted. They were simply operating in obedience to Christ’s commission. They had directed the man’s attention to Jesus Christ and proclaimed that he would receive healing through him.
We too (modern day disciples) are required to do the same. We are to point people to Christ and then say the word as if we are Christ (we are his mouthpiece), and then stand back to see the power of God at work.
Thank you Lord for your mighty power. Thank you for all who minister in Jesus’ name. May the world come to believe. Amen.
“In a recent PCC meeting, after much debate and discussion, it was decided to work towards allowing children, after adequate preparation. to take communion before confirmation, A working party will now prepare a way forward which will be submit to the PCC and then to the Bishop before we can be granted permission to do this. This is a practice that happens in 40% of the churches within the diocese. Where it has happened there has been no noticeable drop in the numbers coming for confirmation. Confirmation continues to be an important rite of passage where the emphasis is on declaring your personal faith in Jesus Christ and claiming the baptism promises made on your behalf by parents and godparents for your own. If you would like to talk to me about this, please feel free to do so.”
“Our APCM is next week on Sunday 17th April at 2:30pm. This is an important meeting where PCC members are elected and the churchwardens chosen. Please consider standing for PCC. There is so much happening at St Mary Magdalene we really need folk who are prepared to help govern the church. If you feel God is calling you to do this and would like a chat with Sheila or me before putting your name forward then just ask. Please pray that we will continue to have a PCC of prayer and vision.”
AGAPE is changing its name. From now on it will be called “Seekers Bible Group”. We will continue to meet the first and third Tuesdays of each month at 2.15pm in the Upper Room. On the 19th April we continue delving into Isaiah.