Weekly Meditation 16/4/21

Who doesn’t like jelly babies? I am certain there will always be some who don’t like them yet many do. I was re-introduced to them as a young minister in the Hull area. Each Christmas morning there were two bags waiting to be shared by the congregation as they left after worshipping. Since that time it has been a habit that I have taken with me each time I have moved in ministry. Having said that I have been challenged about how appropriate it was to eat a (jelly) baby on Christmas morning – make your own mind up here.

Having said that the big question always used to be “Do you eat the head first or the legs?” Some would gleefully proclaim the head was the preferred first bite. However I also remember there was a well-known footballer called Norman Hunter at the time who was well known for his hard tackling which led to many a placard which proclaimed “Norman Hunter bites yer legs!” Hence some, in honour of him, bit off the legs first. Ultimately I just pop the whole thing in.

Recently I saw one of those online comparison quizzes that posed the question “What sort of sweet (candy) are you?” (bracketed equivalent for any US readers). The choice ran to jelly baby, chocolate covered nuts and raisins, boiled fruit sweets, liquorice all sorts and one other that I don’t remember. However, subconsciously, I thought to myself that I’m an all-sort, just as Paul spoke of to the Corinthian Christians in his first letter. He wrote ”I become all things to all men” (1 Corinthians 9:22)

The Psalmist wrote “Taste and see the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8), like Paul to be all things to all men is important. To talk to others at their level of interest means to find out their hobbies/skills and start there. For example if they’re keen anglers to speak of the disciples who were firstly fishermen and later were called as “Fishers of men”. For me its easy when I discover others are interested in railways, scale model or 12” to the foot gauge for the encouragement to “train up a child in the way” (Proverbs 22:6) goes a long way. Just remember the words of the hymn-writer Isaac Watts:

“Sweet is the work, my God, my king,

to praise your name, give thanks, and sing..”

John Pugh (Rev)   Wymeswold Methodist

Weekly Meditation 9/4/21

Most people are aware of the old saying that says if you ring for a doctor late at night for help/advice/assistance its “Take two aspirin/paracetamol and call me in the morning if there’s no change”. The variant I heard some years ago as a young Christian was that Moses approached God in prayer to say the Children of Israel had gone astray and “what could God do about it?” The instructions he received was that he should start by climbing Mount Sinai where he was given two tablets, told to take them regularly, encourage the rest to do the same and see if they helped. Obviously the two tablets had the ten commandments inscribed on them, they wouldn’t change things overnight but long term who knows?

It feels to me that as we get older doctors find more and more wrong with us, ask any older men (I speak from experience here) how often they compare with others what medication they’re on. Medicines for high blood pressure and/or high cholesterol, greater numbers than ever it appears suffering from Diabetes. Many years ago before this medication was discovered how many of us would have passed on, fated never to reach middle let alone old age? The advance of modern medicine has increased life expectancy greatly over the centuries and I am certain many of us are very grateful for that.

Health and healing play a big role in the Christian faith, especially mental health particularly during this Covid pandemic. Yet what doesn’t get such a high profile is spiritual health and how do we make sure we are in the best of spiritual health? There is no expectation that spiritually we need to run a marathon or feed only on food mentioned in the Bible (I have heard some Christians put this forward as a healthy diet!) Somehow or other I don’t fancy the John the Baptist diet of locusts and wild honey. No there is nothing too difficult, the following not necessarily being in any order of importance.

  1. Read your bible – find a version that you find easy to read and use a good commentary to help you understand what you’ve read’
  2. Spend some time each day in prayer, making sure you listen as well as speak
  3. Seek and find a Christian fellowship that not only do you feel comfortable as part of but also offers help and support. Later on as the situation gets better the same fellowship should be the one you enjoy worshipping with.
  4. Find a way to serve the Lord in the wider community

John Pugh (Rev) Wymeswold Methodist

Weekly Meditation 1/4/21

The picture of the cross that comes with this meditation looks a little odd doesn’t it? The arms are not at the same level as we often see the traditional empty cross. They are off-set as my old technology teacher would have said, well he probably would have said something along the lines of “They’re as straight as a dogs hind leg”. This was often the case when boys woodwork was held up to eyelevel and just part was a “gnats eyelash off”. “Sort it laddie” was the next instruction that usually followed. The real reason it was made this way is it’s a holding cross, when you hold it in your pocket, unseen, it feels natural.

The cross has such an important role in the life of the Christian, Good Friday often is depicted with Jesus being crucified. That in itself reminds me of a true story told me by a long standing friend some 45 years or so ago. She wanted to buy a Christian friend a cross to wear, so off she went to a local jewellers in town. When the assistant found out what was required out came a tray filled with all sizes and designs. The next comment floored me when, apparently for a little bit more my friend could buy one with, wait for it, “a little man on it”. The assistant obviously was not a Christian.

The occupied cross stands as a message that Jesus died for all, for the sins of everyone. The cruelty of any death by crucifixion does not bear really thinking about, yet He went through that for all of us without complaint. Others have died in that way over the centuries, two of my uncles, prisoners of war in Changi during WW2 spoke of men being crucified by bayonet for relatively minor offences. How many others died in the jungles of Burma without any others witnessing the atrocity?

The empty cross though carries a different message entirely, a message of hope. It says Jesus is no longer there but risen and gives us the hope of eternal life. So, as mentioned by others past, let us not be Good Friday people but Easter People, let us this Easter carry the message of the Risen Lord wherever we might find ourselves. Happy Easter everyone may the blessing, grace and mercy of Jesus Christ be with you all.

John Pugh (Rev) Wymeswold Methodist

Weekly Meditation 26/3/21

Have you ever had one of those light-bulb moments? If you are not sure what one of those is – all you have to do is look back at some of the old cartoons where someone gets an idea, usually a bright one, and a lit light bulb appears over their heads. Off they go to put into implication these wonderful idea. Surely you’ve had a bright idea at some point? It may have been just a different way of looking at an old problem or a way to cope with a new one.

Does God ever get given the glory for giving you the idea or even acknowledged for his hand in the process? Too often we like to give ourselves the credit for coming up with the idea – you know when we say “I’ve just had this brilliant idea!”. We could acknowledge God’s prodding by saying we didn’t know what to do but God showed us a way forward. Occasionally the prompting may seem just like logic.

One occasion that comes to my mind happened a few years ago when my wife complained the wooden clothes props were getting rather soggy as they lay on the ground. We tried standing them upright but the strong northerly winds would blow them over. I have over the years admired the contraptions envisaged as Heath Robinson contraptions. This set me thinking. Creating 12″ circles out of garden wire, hanging them on the garden fence and threading the poles in between kept them off the ground and allowed them to drain any excess water. Simples!

As we struggle with some of Life’s problems let us seek God’s guidance for each one. When the light bulb moment comes and come they will, let us honestly and publicly give God the glory for the answers. Sometimes the answers may come directly and at other times God may use others to bring his word. Whatever the means the guidance is for our benefit.

John Pugh (Rev)  Wymeswold Methodist

 

Weekly Meditation 19/3/21

Music calms the savage beast (or maybe breast in some versions) of the old maxim. Music has many things claimed about it, it can stir the heart and body to be ready to fight (martial music). Romantic ballads can set the heart to think of love and loved ones, nursery rhymes can make you think of early school years or even remembering your children. As to teenage years whatever was Top of the Pops at the time probably still gets you moving – big bands, Beatles, The Who, Abba, individual singers or groups, as for me I’m a Seekers fan . Our taste for music grows and deepens with the years and who knows what we will enjoy 20 or 30 years from now. I have moved through folk music courtesy of the Spinners and for the last 5 years or so I have moved into Country music (who knew?)

Music also plays a big part in our Christian lives too, whether Gregorian chants which put some people to sleep or modern Christian songs which some folk find too repetitive. As for me I have loved Christian hymns all my life and find words come easy to mind so that I can sing some hymns from memory. The problem is sometimes modern hymnbooks have become politically correct and words have had to be changed. This means I continue singing the old non-PC words while those faithfully following the books sing something different. As far as I’m concerned it doesn’t hurt, God is glorified whatever the words. Whilst we were told to sing “Happy birthday” whilst washing our hands I enjoy singing “And can it be” to Sagina instead. Any other suggestions here that you might enjoy?

While we cannot sing hymns in our Churches yet at present we are not prevented from singing at home. As a child I remember singing Sunday School favourites whilst playing in the garden of the place we were staying at in Scarborough. My sister Carol and I sang at the top of our voices and my parents heard us from the top floor (5th that is) so they said people would have heard us for quite a distance. So the challenge is here for you, as soon as you feel you can stand in your own garden without freezing, spend some time singing at the top of your lungs your favourite hymns. It will get you back into practice for the time when the Government says we can sing in Church once more!

John Pugh (Rev) Wymeswold Methodist

 

Christian Meditation for the village

Weekly Meditation 16/4/21

Who doesn’t like jelly babies? I am certain there will always be some who don’t like them yet many do. I was re-introduced to them as a young minister in the Hull area. Each Christmas morning there were two bags waiting to be shared by the congregation as they left after worshipping. Since that time […]

Posted in Churches | Comments Off on Weekly Meditation 16/4/21

Weekly Meditation 9/4/21

Most people are aware of the old saying that says if you ring for a doctor late at night for help/advice/assistance its “Take two aspirin/paracetamol and call me in the morning if there’s no change”. The variant I heard some years ago as a young Christian was that Moses approached God in prayer to say […]

Posted in Churches | Comments Off on Weekly Meditation 9/4/21

Weekly Meditation 1/4/21

The picture of the cross that comes with this meditation looks a little odd doesn’t it? The arms are not at the same level as we often see the traditional empty cross. They are off-set as my old technology teacher would have said, well he probably would have said something along the lines of “They’re […]

Posted in Churches | Comments Off on Weekly Meditation 1/4/21

Weekly Meditation 26/3/21

Have you ever had one of those light-bulb moments? If you are not sure what one of those is – all you have to do is look back at some of the old cartoons where someone gets an idea, usually a bright one, and a lit light bulb appears over their heads. Off they go […]

Posted in Churches | Comments Off on Weekly Meditation 26/3/21

Weekly Meditation 19/3/21

Music calms the savage beast (or maybe breast in some versions) of the old maxim. Music has many things claimed about it, it can stir the heart and body to be ready to fight (martial music). Romantic ballads can set the heart to think of love and loved ones, nursery rhymes can make you think […]

Posted in Churches | Comments Off on Weekly Meditation 19/3/21
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Church Groups

Groups and Organisations and when they meet:-

Bible Fellowship/Study
An ecumenical group which meets every Monday evening at 7.45pm in the Methodist Church.
Contact: Sue Fossey 01509 881469

MiniFish
Meets fortnightly at the Methodist Church on Thursdays 1.30pm-3pm during term, and is an informal worship time with  Bible stories and play for pre-school children and their carers.
Contact: Sue Fossey 01509 881469

Junior Church
Meets monthly as indicated on the service pattern information.
Junior Church provides Christian teaching suitable to their ages for children aged from three upwards, whatever church (if any) their parents attend.
The meetings take place in the Upper Room of the Methodist Church on the corner of Brook Street and The Stockwell from 11am to Noon one Sunday every month.   The exact week can vary, so is shown on the service notices outside the Churches.  The Junior Church Members attend the beginning of the Methodist service together before they upstairs for their time of learning together.
Children are often given take-home material so families know what is being discussed and can share in their children’s learning.
Any questions, please contact Sandi Cowell 01509 881365  or visit www.wymeswold.com/churches for the service pattern showing which week the group will meet during the month.

For more information about any of these groups speak to Senior Steward Margaret Folwell 01509 880770 or visit https://loughboroughmethodistcircuit.org/churches/

St. Mary’s Church Bellringers

St. Mary’s, Wymeswold, has a ring of six bells which dates back to 1795, when they were cast by Thomas Osborn of Downham Market, Norfolk. These replaced an earlier ring of four bells which were damaged when the church spire was struck by lightning and subsequently demolished.

The current bells were tuned and rehung by John Taylor & Co. of Loughborough in 1937.

The present band of bellringers was formed in the late 1980s and has been slowly growing in numbers and repertoire ever since.

According to an agreement dated 4th August 1742 (now in Leicestershire Record Office) between Thomas Hedderley of Nottingham, bellfounder, and the churchwardens, Hedderley undertook to recast the third bell and ‘uphold the same sound and tunable’ for a year and a day for the cost of 20 shillings per hundredweight. The ring was increased to six bells in 1795.

According to The Church Bells of Leicestershire of 1876 the daily bell was rung at 5 a.m. during the summer months and at 6 a.m. in the winter, also at 6 p.m.. Tradition says that the parish clerk formerly received the proceeds of a close of land for performing this duty. He now receives, according to this book, £1/10/- per annum in lieu.

The current band meet every Tuesday from 7.30pm-9:00 pm for practice and ring for Sunday Service from 10.30am to 11.15am. We are a friendly band who welcome new ringers and provide tuition. Typical standard is plain minor and doubles methods (this will mean something if you are already a ringer).

Please feel free to drop in on a practice night and see how we perform the 350 year old historic art of church bell ringing. Have a go! You may even find yourself wanting to learn more..

Contact: Richard Thomas (Tower Captain) on 01509 881750 for further details.

“In country churches, old and pale,
I hear the changes smoothly rung
and watch the coloured sallies fly
from rugged hands to rafters high
as round and round the bells are swung”

John Betjeman

Wymeswold United Sunday School

Wymeswold United Sunday School provides Christian teaching suitable to their ages for children aged from three upwards, whatever church (if any) their parents attend.

The meetings take place in the Upper Room of the Methodist Church on the corner of Brook Street and the Stockwell from 10:45am to 11:30am most term-time Sundays. The exception to this is the third Sunday of each month when an All-Age Worship service is held at 11am alternately at the parish church (St. Mary’s) and the Methodist church.

The meeting time means that Methodist families can attend the beginning of the Methodist service together before the children move to Sunday School and Church of England families can attend the end of the Anglican service together as children can be escorted from Sunday School up to St. Mary’s.

All children are given take-home material so families know what is being discussed and can share in their children’s learning.

Any questions, please contact Sandi Cowell 01509 881365 or Marilyn Rowley 01509 880843 or by email to mail@wymeswold.fsbusiness.co.uk.

Churches

St. Mary’s Parish Church, Wymeswold
Priest in charge: Rev. Clive Watts
Email: rev.clive.watts@barrowandwoldsgroup.com
Associate Priest: Rev. Fiona Cotton-Beveridge
Email: rev.fiona@barrowandwoldsgroup.com
Administrator: Mrs. Hannah White (Parish Office)
Email: enquiries@barrowandwoldsgroup.com
Church Warden: Michael Henshaw
Website: Barrow and Wolds group
07534 899522

07903 665912

01509 416520

01509 880218

Methodist Church, Wymeswold
Minister: Rev. John Pugh
Superintendent Minister: Rev. Andrew Lomax
Circuit Administrator: Mrs. Josephine Wills
Email: loughboroughmethodist@gmail.com
Church Steward: Margaret Folwell
0116 230 4689
01509 219804
01509 807441

01509 880770

Roman Catholic Church Main Street, East Leake
Parish Priest: Father Michael
Sat 6pm – Holy Mass, Sun 11am – Holy Mass
01509 852147
Baptist Church Beveridge Street, Barrow upon Soar
Senior Minister: Rev. Ben Haldane
Email: administrator@barrowbaptist.org.uk
Sun 10am
01509 416603