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“When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place.”
This Pentecost we are not all together in one place, and the military maxim of ‘divide and conquer’ can seem all too relevant. On my own, I try to do it all and I find myself overwhelmed by the enormity of the world’s need. How can my prayer cover it all?
It doesn’t – and it doesn’t have to individually. What is important is that we all pray, perhaps focussing on a particular few needs at any one time. (To this end I find a weekly cycle of prayer is helpful so that over a week I cover most areas of concern – see some links below.) And our several prayers join together as one in the Spirit.
Sometimes all I can do is say to God: I know my prayer is inadequate, but I offer it to you to use as you know best.
The story of Pentecost can be seen as a reversal of what happened at the Tower of Babel (which you can read about in Genesis 11). Instead of people being divided from one another by the confusion of languages, the Spirit draws people of many nations and languages together into one Church – a Church which speaks confidently about God’s deeds of power.
Many drops make an ocean.
Many crumbs make a loaf.
Many pixels disclose a picture.
And many members form one Church joining in common praise and common prayer.
You should have already received the Ministry Area newsletter with tangible suggestions for observing Pentecost. Do join in the worship of the church this Sunday, so that we are at least all together in one virtual space.
Also, it is clear to me that it will be a long while before we can gather in one place and I am concerned that, positive as it is to join in virtual worship as an observer, it would be desirable to meet together on a more interactive basis. I will be setting up some ‘get-togethers’ using zoom.us (it really is straightforward to use) and sending out invitations with links:
Coffee morning: Wednesday 3 June at 10.30am (supply your own coffee and biscuits)
Faith Matters: Monday 8 June 8pm
If you would like to receive the link(s), then please let me know. If you would like a walk-through with Zoom, I’ll do my best to help.
Worship this Sunday
Join this Sunday’s Eucharist from Bishopstow at 11am here.
And join a Sunday evening Reading & Homily, Preacher – Canon David Neale, at 5pm here.
Catch up on Bishop Cherry’s Tuesday Reflection on prayer here.
Join worship with the Monmouth parishes https://youtu.be/Kgp7AOFMWa4
You can find the Anglican weekly prayer cycle on https://www.churchofengland.org/prayer-and-worship/worship-texts-and-resources/common-worship/daily-prayer/prayers#mm10c
and the diocesan monthly prayer cycle can be downloaded from https://monmouth.churchinwales.org.uk/en/prayer_and_spirituality/prayer/
May the boldness of the Holy Spirit transform you,
the gentleness of the Spirit lead you,
and the gifts of the Spirit equip you
to serve and worship God who is Father, Son and Spirit.
With my love and prayers