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January 2016

Dear All,

In the middle of December last year four classes from Warden Hill Junior School came to visit St. Margaret’s. We spoke about the age of the building (which is much older than their commonest guess of 100 years!), the main things found there, the pews, pulpit, organ, alter, candles, bells and font, the meaning of our liturgical colours – purple, red, green, blue and white, this last used for a little pretend wedding ceremony - and I asked them all what they thought a church was for.

Interestingly each class said that a church was for “praying to God.” Intriguingly and perhaps surprisingly then, in a society where religious adherence is always reported as decreasing and previously accepted institutional prayers are questioned as non inclusive that this upcoming generation is in no doubt about what St. Margaret’s is for.

Prayer remains an instinctive reflex response of very many people to the world around us and the events that affect us. We pray to give thanks, to lament and to ask God’s help in our lives and in the lives of our families, friends, and acquaintances. These prayers may take many forms from the formal to the informal. The protestant church has always stressed that we each have a direct link with God that he will always hear our prayers, that we are a common priesthood. Nonetheless we retain too the idea of intercession, that is petitionery prayer on behalf of others. Week by week in our services we regularly pray for those we know who are in “trouble, sorrow, need, sickness or any other adversity” and frequently people will ask me to pray for them or someone they know, not publicly, but in my own daily prayer.

Who is praying for you?

Here is my question for this New Year. Perhaps you know the answer and are comfortable that there is someone who prays for you, for your life and wellbeing but maybe you do not think anyone is and as I often hear, like lots of people, you find it difficult to pray yourself. So if you do have something or someone that you would like me to pray for on your behalf please let me know – the e-mail address below is newly there just for this.


I have set it up so that you can send me a note of any special intention you would like me to keep in my prayers. It is only for this purpose, I will not reply to you, it will only ever be seen by me.

And heard by God.

Wishing you all a very happy New Year



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