News from St Mary the Virgin, Kenton on Saturday 12th & Sunday 13th June 2021: The Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
It won't be long before we know whether we will be returning to “normal” as we take the final steps out of the lockdown restrictions. With everything in the news about the different variants of Coronavirus and some areas that are surge testing as a result of more social interaction, greater transmission and higher infection rates, it won't come as a surprise if the Government decides to extend the date for a few more weeks. Meanwhile, the church has returned to “Ordinary Time” – pretty much our “normal” – as the term “Ordinary” comes from “ordinal numbers” (the numbering of the Sundays that fall outside of Christmastide and Eastertide). Thus we are celebrating Sunday number 11, the Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time. The weather seems to have returned to “normal” too, with some soaring temperatures and heavy showers, which have led to a sudden burst of activity in our gardens. It is difficult to keep on top of the grass mowing and weeding as the growth is prolific.
Jesus uses the analogy of this growth in his parable in the Good News from Mark: “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man throws a seed on the land. Night and day, while he sleeps, when he is awake, the seed is sprouting and growing; how, he does not know. Of its own accord the land produces the first shoot, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. And when the crop is ready, he loses no time: he starts to reap because the harvest has come.”
Of course, while many things are returning to “normal”, we are still bound by certain restrictions within our churches. The swearing in of our Churchwardens, Johnette Clarke and Ken Elliott, takes place on Wednesday evening by our Archdeacon, Catherine: and usually a small crowd from St. Mary's would go along and support them. Unfortunately, under the Covid restrictions, only the Churchwardens themselves will be able to be present – but we wish them well and our prayers abound for their term of office.
The First Mass of the Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time will be at 6.00pm on Saturday 12th June. Parish Mass at 10.30am on Sunday 13th June. Please remember that all Covid restrictions still apply with regard to hand sanitising, face masks and social distancing.
You will have read and heard in the media about the young man, Roman Protasevich, who has been detained by the Belarusian authorities for “organisation of mass disorder” in a manner which has broken almost every international law. There are serious Human Rights issues and he is the subject of this month's ACAT (Harrow) Prayer Case of the Month. Please pray for him, his girlfriend and family.
And let us pray at this time for all those who are having to make the difficult decisions about the future of our country as we emerge from lockdown and return to a new “normal”.