Weekly meditation for the village 22/1/21

So many people have an affirmation for a place that they feel part of without having any real history or contact with it. For example I feel a close attraction to Wales, it may be because of my surname (Pugh) or the fact that many of my father’s wider family have similar feelings. My Great Aunt Doris for example married a man who all and sundry knew as Jeff Jones however his baptismal name was Emiah. So many relatives on my Father’s side had surnames of Welsh origin – colloquially they were known in that part of Staffordshire as the Tafia. In case you’re wondering Pugh comes from the Welsh Ap Hugh (Son of Hugh) which changed over the centuries.

It can cause confusion – at one point I was stationed to Cwmbran in South Wales for a short time in my ministry. Because of my name I was asked “Which valley are you from?” The valleys of South Wales lead to folk being very proud of their heritage, Cwmbran is located in the Eastern Valley. Their response was complete amazement “Where on earth is that” (or somewhat similar wording when I told them I was born in the Vale of York.

Even so I still have wonderful memories of Wales and spent numerous childhood holidays around various parts of North Wales. Whilst not speaking Welsh I learned to recognise several well known words, so I knew public footpaths, names in Welsh of local towns and villages, etc. I did ask quite soon after arriving for help in learning the words of the Welsh National Anthem, it was sung after every evening social activity. I didn’t want to end up like a well known Minister for Wales who was seen just opening and closing his mouth to the singing of the Anthem on TV. The people I asked said I needn’t worry about learning the words all I needed to know was “My hen laid an egg at the top of a tree”. Maybe they didn’t want an Englishman to learn the language of the angels! The ironic thing is my son Gareth became top of his year in Welsh at the local Senior school (Croesyceiliog).

Wherever we have our hearts, wherever we think of as home – heaven is the place we would be. The Kingdom of God is the ultimate destination. The entrance there has been paid for each of us by Jesus. We do not deserve that place of peace and rest through anything we have done except by accepting Jesus as Lord and Saviour. I have no idea what it will be like there but I do know that’s where I want to be and where I want you to be also. There is a place for you if you want it

John Pugh (Rev) Wymeswold Methodist

 

Weekly Meditation for the village 15/1/21

Keys – they play an important role in our lives. Firstly they are associated with the expression ‘key to the door’. Once it was a case of when you hit majority at 21 years you would receive it and then the age moved to 18 years old. I know it has not physically meant an actual key to the front door for many a year but still symbolizes that you can be regarded as an adult. Many of us probably were given a front door key whilst still at school, many in Senior School but some in Junior School especially if parents were working full time.

Keys are also regarded as a musical term. If anything it reminds me of a favourite joke I heard some years ago, in fact if anything it was funnier after serving as a part-time Prison Chaplain. As a visitor called to see his minister friend at Church one day, the minister said come and listen to our singing group practise, we call them the Prison Singers. “Are they actually prisoners?” the minister was asked “No” he answered “just they are behind a few bars and always looking for the key”. Musicians and singers alike I am certain will be able to explain the technicalities of which notes fit each key.

A key is also essential part of mathematical and physical diagrams, helping to explain what diagrammatic shape stands for what. Perhaps like me you have looked at electronic diagrams and thought I don’t understand hide nor hair of this. Possibly one or two symbols may surface from Science lessons at school but the rest? There are those who look at some old maps and need a key to understand what stands for what there. Technically this called a legend but horses for courses.

Years ago I remember reading A.J. Cronin’s book “Keys of the Kingdom” (1941) later watched the film based on it starring Gregory Peck (1944). The story of Father Francis Chisholm struggling to set up a Mission in China, well worth reading/seeing the story if you get the chance. We understand the old tradition that Peter was given the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven so that whatever he bound on earth would be bound in heaven, whatever he let be on earth would be allowed in heaven. Hence the symbol continues today of the crossed keys for the Pope. Some people are desperate to enter the kingdom. The entry price has been paid though through the death and resurrection of Jesus, don’t be too much in a hurry though to enter there’s still so much to be done!

John Pugh (Rev)  Wymeswold Methodist

 

 

Weekly Meditation for the village 8/1/21

If I had a hammer, I’d hammer in the morning,

I’d hammer in the evening, all over this land.

I’d hammer out danger, I’d hammer out warning,

I’d hammer out the love between my brother and my sister

All over this land.

A protest song originally sung by Pete Seeger in 1949, which only really became popular when sung by Peter, Paul and Mary in 1962. The second verse spoke of a bell which would be rung and the third verse of a song which could be sung. It was always the finale of the song which mentions :

“It’s the hammer of justice

Its the bell of freedom

Its the song about the love between my brother and my sister all over this land”

I never really understood the song until many years later but I certainly remember many of my school friends singing or humming the rather catchy tune around the playground. The 60’s seemed very much to be a period of protest as well as the time of hippies and universal love. I remember the news being filled with films of young students protesting about something or other. I also remember older folk saying they didn’t understand the ‘young uns’, but hasn’t that always been the case between young and old?

Over the millennia humanity has struggled with the dilemma of succeeding generations trying to understand each other. Sometimes there is greater understanding between the very old and the very young, is this because as we truly age we develop a more mature wisdom? The cynic would say as we truly get very old we become childlike again and that is why we get on better. Whatever the reason maybe there is something to look forward to, I know there will always be exceptions to the norm. How many older readers have happy memories of sitting on grandparents laps, listening to stories or just hearing their heart beat?

The Old Testament says in one version “regard the hoary head” in other words honour the older generation. In some cultures the elder generations were recognised as being ‘wise’, they were the ones who could advise when things began to go “pear shaped”. Just stop and think about yourself for a moment, how different are you from 10/20/20/40/50/60 years+ ago? How differently would you handle things now? See that’s wisdom for you!

John Pugh (Rev)  Wymeswold Methodist

 

Weekly Meditation for the village 31/12/20

Happy New Year! It means just one thing – yes indeed New Year Resolutions. My greatest New Year resolution boast is that the one I made in 1981 I still keep and haven’t broken it! Over the years as I have spoken to people of both sexes and all ages (yes I still believe in that) about their resolutions. Many have admitted to breaking them within minutes – usually involving chocolate, biscuits, tobacco or alcohol. Some have boasted of lasting an hour or two, some a day or two, slightly fewer a week or more, a select few a month or so. A favoured few will stoically claim up to a year. Just in case you might be wondering what this 40 year old resolution might be – I’ll let you into my secret (shhh don’t tell anyone promise!) in 1981 my New Years resolution was I would not make any further New Year’s resolutions. You can adopt it if you wish, no charge.

The beginning of January also contains a very special Sunday for the Methodist Church, it is known as Covenant Sunday. It’s a time when we remember the promises we made when we became members of the Methodist Church and the people we came into membership with. Most of all though we reaffirm our covenant relationship with God, through Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit. The service during which we share together in the breaking of bread and taking of the Communion wine (juice of the grape, non-alcoholic) we share in a particular prayer which speaks to our heart.

I am no longer my own but yours,

Put me to what you will,

rank me with whom you will;

put me to doing, put me to suffering;

Let me be employed for you

or laid aside for you,

exalted for you

or brought low for you;

let me be full, let me be empty,

let me have all things,

let me have nothing;

I freely and wholeheartedly yield all things

to your pleasure and disposal.

And now, glorious and blessed God,

Father, Son and Holy Spirit,

you are mine and I am yours,

So be it.

And the covenant now made on earth,

let it be ratified in heaven. Amen

The other thing I remember as being important in my life at an earlier time was my investment as a scout, the promise I still remember and also the salute to remember it by “I will honour God and the Queen and obey the Scout Law”. Would and could we all be so enthusiastic about our Christian faith

John Pugh (Rev)  Wymeswold Methodist

 

Weekly Meditation for the village 24/12/20

Happy Christmas everyone! I expect many of you by Christmas lunch will know what you have received as Christmas presents. I often wonder though how do you open your gifts from other people. Some folk I know are rippers, just pull off the paper willy-nilly, paper everywhere until the contents are disclosed. Having said that I would challenge almost anyone to unwrap a present prepared by my late mother. She used to use yard after yard (or metre after metre dependent on how you measure length) of sellotape. Even if you could tell what lay beneath the wrapping it would take you absolutely ages to get there. I’m certain stationers would rub their hands with expectation each September as she prepared to wrap her gifts for that year.

Some folks I know will wish you on the day “Happy Christmas” then happily point out its only 365 days till (next) Christmas. I have even come across one family for whom it is Christmas every day, I couldn’t stand the pace. However you feel about what Christmas is all about – Jesus is the reason for the season. There are those who would point at history and paganism to point out Christianity purloined the occasion because no-one knows the exact date on which Jesus was born. It doesn’t matter whether or not the date is accurate, what is important is that we recognise the human birth of the Son of God.

It’s a day we enjoy sharing food, appreciating family and sometimes wondering what to do with the odd present. It’s a day for remembering years past as well as family members and friends no longer with us. It’s a time of thanksgiving for Jesus, for family members past and present and for friends who we may value over family.

Christmas carries with it such memories, mostly happy but also some bitter sweet ones too. I am certain many of you will remember different Christmas memories – school days and parties, family gatherings maybe shared with grandparents, for those who served in the Armed Forces seeing the Officers waiting and serving at Christmas time or maybe carol singing round a Christmas tree, a piano or with a full band. Christmas 2020 may be remembered for a completely different reason, lockdown and isolation notwithstanding. May the Prince of Peace grant you all the joy of Christmas.

Hark the herald angel sing Glory to the newborn King!”

John Pugh (Rev) Wymeswold Methodist

 

Information on Village Defibrillator

East Midlands Ambulance Service

Wolds Community First Responders

Accessing Your Local AED (Village Defibrillator)

In all our villages we have an emergency Defibrillators. They have been paid for by local village community donations and are regularly checked. Why don’t you familiarise yourself to where they are.

When a 999 emergency telephone call is made an EMAS (East Midlands Ambulance Service) Controller will ask some questions and they will assess if a Defibrillator is needed. They know where your nearest defibrillator is located.

If they want you or someone else with you to go for the defibrillator they will say so. They will tell you exactly where it is located and give you the access code for the yellow box.

EMAS Control will keep talking to you on the phone all the time.

When the defibrillator arrives you open it and it will speak to you and tell you exactly what to do. You don’t need any special training.

Stay calm and don’t panic.

If you know how to perform CPR then that is good but again EMAS will tell you what to do.

The Wolds CFR group have annual training sessions on CPR, Defibrillators and strokes but this year they have been curtailed. We do hope to offer these again when we can.

If you have any questions, assistance or need to learn more than phone Peter on 01509 889692

The team are on call for you.

If you are interested in finding out more then please do contact Peter.

…………………

We operate as a Charitable Trust with a management team made up from the CFR’s.

Have you thought about being a CFR? Why not give Peter a call to have a chat about the work?

(Registered Charity Number: 1182197)

Peter

EMAS CFR Group Coordinator