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Or rather,  prayers in thanksgiving for a new path. For finally, after the debates over concrete/york stone, after the head-scratching about why the architects jutted the steps out into the graved area and not make them adjoin a widened path, and after watching one pushchair pushed off the edge already this morning (ahem), today we dedicate our new ramped access into church.

Together with the council’s rather vigorous removal of ivy which confirmed my suspicions about the actual visibility levels of the place from the road in not very long times gone by, though as yet lacking the new pull up banner still on my drawing board, we hope that it might just off curious onlookers to test out the entry and come on in sometime.

I know that most people had accessible entryways ticked off ages ago, but just in case you happen to need them ever, here are the prayers to be offered at the service: more…

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…pray for us…

Blessed Mary, you who knew what it was to worry about the surroundings in which to bring a child into the world,
bless our families, homes and attempts to create stable, sheltered lives for all.
Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us.

Blessed Mary, you who knew what it was to flee home and security, to be a refugee, watching over their shoulder,
bless those whose life is in danger from persecution and oppression, those who seek a safer life away from their homes or homelands.
Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us.

Blessed Mary, you who knew more…

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A Prayer for Barefoot Disciples

Lord Jesus Christ,
we follow you
as you empty yourself of power,
gaze into the eyes of need and pain,
and tread the way of humility
all the way to the Cross.
Teach us how to walk,
shedding the shoes of pride and conceit,
ceasing to complain,
delighting in the life you offer
and learning more of what it is to be humbly open
and alive in your love.
We ask this in the name of Your Father
and the power of Your Spirit.
Amen.

From a post about his new book, Barefoot Disciple, by Stephen Cherry

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It’s true I would have rather liked to be able to have been at midnight mass at my sending church this year, since it’s my last chance. But instead I was at what turned out to be a quite beautiful mass in the village church, celebrated not by the not-really-new-anymore-but-still-worthy-of-the-title-new-as-this-is-yorkshire vicar but by the old (old) vicar, the vicar I remember more…

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This year’s Christmas crib service at the church in the village was another ‘part for everyone’ affair, this year the different characters being designated by a coloured toilet roll inner, with a long explanation in the service sheet incase anyone wasn’t listening too closely. Obviously, just one blue roll for mary, the white ones were sheep, the white ones with tinsel were angels (bit of scope for confusion) the brown ones were animals and the nearly brown ones were shepherds (ditto…). I think I preferred the little bags of costume from last year, but still a good idea to ferret away. As each set of characters came out to place their toilet roll on the fabric covered boxes, I found myself thinking we could do a lot worse than try and live a nativity… more…

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Planning prayers for tutor group breakfast last weekend I was saddened to read of two deaths, of a soldier from 5 Rifles and the news of Gary Speed’s death, pretty much my favourite player while he was at Newcastle. Another soldier’s loss fell all too quickly from the headlines, while the papers went to town on the celebrity, tributes pouring in to Speed saying things like “he was such a professional” and “he had so much to live for”. Sadly, in the aftermath of a suicide, you hear more…

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