August 2014
United Team Service
Picture, Sandra Millar
Sunday 31st August saw another of our united Team Services when we all gather in one of our 9 churches, this time St Anne's, Oxenhall. Our guest preacher was the Rev'd Dr Sandra Millar who lives in Gloucester but is the national Church of England 'Projects and Development Officer'. (Return to top)

The Old Testament reading was from the Book of the Prophet Jeremiah and Sandra said the word 'ate' had stood out when she considered what she would say. Jeremiah is only one of three people in the Bible who were said to have literally eaten the 'Word of God' because he ate a scroll. She developed this into an amusing sermon with a serious message, pointing out that 500,000 people nationally pass through our churches every week for a Wedding, Christening or Funeral service. Even in our local church situation there's on average 50 Weddings, Christenings and Funerals each year with an average attendance of 40-80. That means at least 2,000 people pass through the church in our own benefice. (Return to top)

It's wrong to say they only come as an excuse for a party (what's wrong with a party, Jesus enjoyed them?) or to 'get the baby done' - it represents an wonderful opportunity for us to 'feed' the visitors by showing how our faith answers the two most important questions national research has shown they ask: What's the point of life? and How do we prepare for death? (Return to top)
Family Pets Service
Picture, Pets in Church
August 10th saw our annual Pet's Service. For the third year running we had to hold it in church instead of on the Village Green due to wet weather (actually the remains of Hurricane Bertha!) so we were pleased that 24 people and 8 dogs made it - more than we expected in view of the heavy rain. (Return to top)

Rev'd Marilyn Adsetts made her annual visit to lead the Service, this year with her new dog 'Daisy', because her PAT (Pets As Therapy*) dog 'Fudge' had died of old age. The Service followed much of our regular 'All-Age' Family Service format, but this year Marilyn introduced an individual blessing for each pet. (Return to top)

The reading was introduced with an apology, because it coincidentally was about Noah building an Ark to save the animals from the flood which resulted from heavy rain. Fortunately the rain outside had eased considerably by the time we left the church, so we weren't flooded this time. (Return to top)

*PAT dogs are trained to accept strangers and are taken into hospitals and homes to allow patients to pet them as part of their treatment. (Return to top)