Benefice Letter for April

That wonderful month of April has arrived! The gardens are full of colour, the birds are nesting and spring is definitely in the air. We shall soon be regularly smelling that lovely fragrance of newly mown grass and looking forward to some long lazy summer days (wishful thinking!).

As Lent draws to a close we will leave behind those times of soul searching as we prepare to celebrate the most important part of the Church’s year. We can all now say to one another - Happy Easter!!! For those of you who gave up chocolate for Lent it is the end of a long few weeks but – if you’ve made it this far why not carry on?!!!!! For those of you who took up something that would help you physically, mentally or spiritually – definitely keep it up as you should now know and appreciate the benefit of doing it! To all of you – Well Done!!!

Easter is the most important time of the Christian year and lasts much longer than just Easter Day! The Easter Season, begins on Easter Sunday and lasts seven weeks, ending with the coming of the fiftieth day, Pentecost Sunday. So do keep celebrating our Lord’s resurrection! From Palm Sunday there are several special services which will be held in our churches beginning with the blessing of palms and walk of witness on Palm Sunday (25th March). We shall meet at either St Nicholas Church, Ringmore at 9.45am for the blessing of the palms before walking to St Peter’s for our service at 10.30am or meet at All Saints Church, Combeinteignhead at 10.00am for the blessing of the palms and walk to St Andrew’s Church for our service at 11.00am. If you don’t wish to join us for the walk please do meet us at the church where there is to be a service. There will also be a service at 5.00pm at St Peter’s – Stations of the Cross where we journey with Jesus to the cross.

On Maundy Thursday (29th March) there will be a service at St Peter’s, Shaldon at 6.30pm, which will include a dramatisation of the Last Supper, a Fellowship meal (our own ‘last supper’), there will then be a short Eucharist after which the altar will be stripped as we prepare for the darkness of Good Friday. On Good Friday itself there will be a 9.15am service at St Peter’s, Shaldon prior to walking to the Village Green for a United Service and The Final Hour will be spent at St Andrew’s Church, Stokeinteignhead at 2.00pm. On Easter Eve (Saturday 15th) the Easter Ceremonies will be celebrated at St Andrew’s Church, Stokeinteignhead at 8.00pm. St Nicholas Church will have a service of Easter Praise on Easter Sunday at 6pm and St Blaise Church, Haccombe will be holding their Easter Carol Service at the church at 6.00pm on Sunday 8th April. Details of all the special services for Easter, together with our usual Sunday services can be found in all the churches as well as on our website

April is the month of business meetings in all our churches when we meet to appoint PCC members and other officers and hear the reports for the past year. Before those very important meetings I would like to personally express my sincere thanks to all our church officers for all their hard work on behalf of the churches and their people. They do all work hard and often get no thanks at all. I want you all to know just how much I appreciate you – thank you.

Wishing you all a very happy and blessed Eastertide. With love from the Rectory,

Annie x

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