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Holy Trinity August News Letter July 2009 From your Rector I write this reflection on one of the more pleasant winter afternoons. What a lovely season in Hillcrest. Thinking back to the time we arrived, it seems as if we had more sun shining days these past weeks than we had in summer when we arrived. This month I thought that we consider a somewhat more sombre topic, Funeral versus Memorial services. We have had numerous requests for Memorial Services as an alternative to Funeral Services. One of the reasons advanced for such requests is that family members find it difficult to be present with the coffin in church. As Anglicans we are not permitted to do this. Memorial services are encouraged in those instances where a person died in another province or country and is buried there, affording the friends in their home town the opportunity of bidding farewell to the deceased. The General Rubrics (rules) pertaining to funeral and memorial services read: “A Memorial Service is not an alternative to the Funeral Service. It is an additional service which may be used in the home or in church. It may precede the Interment of Ashes.” (APB) As a Church we believe there is a distinct difference between a Funeral and Memorial Service. At the Funeral Service we reverently commit the body of the deceased to God, whereas at a Memorial Service we recall the memory of the deceased person. As you can appreciate, the focus at these respective services is very different. Christians believe that all life begins and ends with God. In Genesis 1 we read that God created human beings in God’s image and breathed God’s breathe into them. The prophet Jeremiah wrote that before he was formed, whilst still in his mother’s womb God called him. Our existence, from the moment of conception begins with God. Our bodies are therefore sacred from that moment on. St John tells us that God dignified the human body by making it his dwelling in Jesus, the Word made flesh. St Paul writes that our bodies are the temple of God, the Holy Spirit. It is not just a basic tenet of our faith but has also been the practice of the Christian Church since its inception. The Church regards the human body as a precious gift from cradle to grave. Thus, even in death, the body should be acknowledged and treated with respect for having been the temporary home of the treasure of the life God gives us. Therefore at a funeral the body is commended reverently back to God. Another important aspect for having a public funeral is that it affords the community and friends of the deceased the opportunity to share in our grief. From time immemorial funerals afforded family, friends and the community the opportunity to grieve the death of a person. The funeral service thus provides the opportunity for all who knew the deceased to say their farewell. I want to encourage us all to consider a funeral service in the event of death because as a Parish we too want to be part of the ceremony of giving thanks to our God for your life and contribution to the world and the Church. Please inform us and your immediate families of your decision and if you have not already done so, we would like to encourage you please to complete the ‘Arrangements for my Funeral’ form, which is available from Enid. I pray and trust that this very scant view of the Church’s position will help us. With every blessing Your priest and friend Gary+ Parish Ministry Groups This section of our magazine will provide information on the existing parish ministry groups and some of the planned activities for the immediate future. The Evening Women’s Guild (EWG) was established to give working women an opportunity to participate in the life of the church. The group meets on the last Tuesday of every month from 19h00 to 22h00. Members of the guild, which presently numbers 21, take turns to host the meeting in their homes. The hostess for the evening plans each meeting that will consist of listening to guest speakers involved in a variety of services within the community. The meeting normally concludes with the discussion of the group’s business matters. The group participate in various activities to support the work of poor relief. Amongst other things it includes an annual fund raiser on Shrove Tuesday, collecting and distributing necessities to projects within the surrounding vicinity. The next project for the group is a musical evening with John and Jonathan Didlick entitled “That’s Life”. It will take place in the parish hall on the 3rd of October at 19h00. The cost is R60 per person, patrons are to bring a picnic supper. A cash bar will be available. Dress code is black and white. For more information contact Lynette Reynolds on 031 716 8161. The Sunday School The Sunday school has become a hive of activity for young busy bodies. They have followed similar themes to that of the main Sunday themes in worship. This past month the Sunday school was taught about the armour of God as a protector against sin as the armour of a soldier protects him from injury. Based on St Paul’s teaching of the armour of God, the Sunday school made the various pieces of armour from tin foil. Another lesson focused on God’s provision of manna for the Israelites, who fled from Egypt. Pieces of torn paper were spread across the floor to illustrate how this manna fell from Heaven, the Children thoroughly enjoyed collecting the pieces of paper. In dealing with vegetation, the Sunday school children taught Nicole a thing or two about photosynthesis. The children seem to be having great fun in the Sunday school and we want to encourage parents to bring their children more regularly as we continue to build this important ministry. The In Touch Update The 21st Century Parent – Rob Parsons The 21st Century Parenting course by Rob Parsons hosted by the church has been a resounding success thus far. An average of 20 parents have been attending the weekly course on a Tuesday evening. The feed back from the participants so far has been positive. Everyone seems to have learnt something from the presentation or the discussion which took place afterwards. The participants feel that the relevant parenting challenges are been addressed. The course continues to run until the 22nd September. As each topic stands alone, we encourage those that have not yet attended to join us on a Tuesday at 17h45. August Environmental Awareness Month Nette Miller, the Parish Environmental Awareness Group Convenor, was pleased with the response to the worship focus on the environment this month. The Committee was hard at work this month in raising our awareness, challenging us and producing weekly conservation tips and organising a clean up around the Hillcrest Post Office area. The response to the appeals and interest in the displays was phenomenal. The group encouraged parishioners to bring all their empty cans for recycling and thus far 25kgs of cans have been dropped off at the church. Many showed an interest in the invasive alien plant display and acknowledged that they did not realise which were actually the undesirable ones. Many commented and showed surprise at how pretty an indigenous cut flower arrangement can be. The clean up at the post office was well supported by both young and older members of the congregation and it proved a great success in building fellowship. Snippets of News Sean Semple Bishop Rubin selected Sean Semple as a candidate for the Holy Office of a Deacon. The ordination will take place at the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, Pietermaritzburg. Please pray for Sean, Catherine, Kyle and Lex. Deaths: This month we sadly bid farewell to two of our longstanding parishioners, Paul Reinecke and Colleen Woodhouse. We also conducted the funeral services of Audrey Ford, Margaret Sanders and Neville Steere, family or friends of our parishioners. As I Grow Please.. Understand that I am growing and changing very fast It must be difficult to keep pace with me, but please try. Listen to me and give me brief, clear answers to my questions Then I will keep sharing my thoughts and feelings Reward me for telling the truth. Then I am not frightened into lying. Tell me when you make mistakes and what you learned from them Then I can accept that I am OK, even when I blunder. Pay attention to me, and spend time with me. Then I can believe that I am important and worthwhile. Do the things you want me to do Then I have a good positive model. Trust and respect me. Even though I am smaller than you. I have feelings and needs just like you. Compliment and appreciate me. Then I’ll feel good, and I’ll want to continue to please you. Help me explore my unique interests, talents and potential. In order for me to be happy, I need to be me, and not you or someone you want me to be. Be an individual and create your own happiness. Then you can teach me the same, and I can live a happy. successful and fulfilling life. Thank you for hearing me, I love you! On the Lighter Side Actual Parish Notices The fasting and Prayer Conference includes meals. Eight new choir robes are currently needed due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones! Potluck supper Sunday at 5.00pm - prayer and medication will follow. Ladies, don’t forget the rummage sale. It’s a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands. Quick Quiz 1. Which Bible Character has no parents? 2. Why didn’t they play cards on the Ark? 3. Who is the greatest babysitter in the Bible? Answers to Quiz 1. Joshua, son of Nun 2. Because Noah was standing on the deck. 3. David. He rocked Goliath to a very deep sleep.
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