FAREWELL TO RECTOR SU MARSHALL
On a Sunday in March 2002 we were delighted to welcome two unexpected guests to our Morning Service – the new Rector Su Marshall and her husband Nigel. Having just moved to the area, Church etiquette would not allow them to visit either of the Parish Churches until she was properly in place, so they came to us. At the end of the meeting we gathered round them and asked God to bless the ministry of ‘Reverend Su’ as we came to call her affectionately, and to bless the family in their new home.
That event heralded an encouraging co-operation between ourselves and All Saints and Saint Mary Magdalene Churches, which has continued over the years. The Reverend Su re-invented the Fifth Sunday in the Month to produce Extra Time, to which our members were invited. We ran joint Holiday Clubs for the children in their Summer school break. We shared Lent meetings to our mutual benefit. And we met at the Reid Hall for yummy lunches.
The last one of those was a farewell lunch to mark Su’s retirement. Among the gifts given to her was a quilt made from squares decorated by various families and groups in the village. The square from the Free Church depicted ‘praying hands’ – a reminder of our on-going prayers for Su, Nigel and their Family as they move on.
REAL POVERTY IS HAVING NO FRIENDS
Real poverty is lack of friendship, according to Brazilian Pastor Claudio
Oliver on his You Tube page. He quotes several Scriptures to support his view, such as: “Two are better than one…if one falls down, his friend can help him up.” (Ecclesiastes ch4 v9+10) “A friend loves at all times…” and “There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (Proverbs ch17v17 and 18v24).
Taking up this theme, our own Pastor Jim Beveridge told those at the May Squeeze of the woman who had no friends (she was alone at the well, the village focal point). Jesus spoke to her, asking for a drink, which was not acceptable in their culture because she was a woman, a stranger, and a foreigner. But this began a conversation which she described to her neighbours as “being told everything I had ever done.” “Could this be the Christ?” she asked them and herself.
Herstmonceux has no well, but it does have those who are in need of friendship. How about finding one or two and bringing them here to be with friends, suggested Pastor Jim.