My dear Friends
This news appeared in the January issue of “The World Christian Digest" : —
“ According to the Berlin Church Information Bulletin no church to be built in the new town in the Soviet zone of Germany at Furstenberg. The town, described as the first Socialist city of the German Democratic Republic will have 15,000 people but no provision is made for any Church although both Protestant and Roman Catholic authorities have done their utmost to obtain permission. Even the erection of a Hut has been forbidden.
This will probably strike you as being tragic for the German people. The authorities refusing permission to build a Church in a new town is a definite effort to repress and eliminate Christianity in a Communist controlled area. The two cannot agree. Christianity says, ‘‘God is the Creator of of the world and mankind; and every
man owes definite allegiance and duty to Him." Communism says ‘There is no God, and the duty of every man is to serve the State and to obey its decree." Thus you have at once a the conflict of duties. So in refusing permission for Christians to build a Church in a new town the Communist is at least being logical. But are we logical? We Christians promise allegiance to Christ. We have Churches to which to worship Him.We have Jesus’s orders, ‘‘Do this in remembrance of Me ‘—at the Last Supper. The first Christians met regularly on the first day of the week for the Breaking of Bread (the Commemoration of the Last Supper) and for prayers. There is no doubt about it, the Maker gives His orders, but few Christians obey them. This is evident from the attendances at Holy Communion services at our Church.
If there were no churches, we would cry out aloud for them. We have them but what do we do, with them or for them? How Jesus must despair for mankind! In many parts of the world, His Church is tortured an persecuted. In other parts ot the world it is lazy, argumentative, and given to splitting of hairs. Let us face up to it, each one of us, that we are not what we ought to be. We talk too much, we argue too much, we excuse ourselves too much, we are much too petty. What would you want to do if you did not have a Church to which to go, because the authorities stopped you? Well, let us do it while have the church.
Your friend and Vicar,
J. WYN DAVIES
ANNUAL PAROCHIAL MEETING
The Annual Parochial Church Meeting was held this year on Jan. 20th instead of Easter. The attendance was quite good though not what it might be. The Financial Statement for 1953 shewed a most successful year. We started with deficit of £80 and ended with a balance of £28. All the windows had been repaired or replaced at a cost of £116. The Magazine account shewed balance of £11. The Vicar thanked Mr S.Miles for his audit.
There were 25 nominations, for the 18 places on the P.C.C. The names of those elected are put up in the church porch. The Misses Still and Worgan were appointed to the Ruri-Decanal Conference.
The Vicar thanked all members of the P.C.C. for their help and loyalty to the church, and to him personally. He praised and thanked them for the way they had raised money during the year. But he felt worried about the church income depending mostly on rummage sales, fetes and bazaars instead of by collections and direct giving. This was the proper way to meet commitments.
During 1953, 27 children had been baptized during Matins and Evernsong
as directed in the rubric of the Prayer Book The Vicar stressed the point
of Public Baptism of Infants, and not a private one, like a “hole
and corner” affair.
All church workers were thanked: The Flower Guild, those who decorate at festivals ; Cleaners; Choir and Organist, Sacristans; servers and stoker; magazine distributors and Editor; F.W.O.S. organiser; One Coin Box distributors and the grasscutters.
The Young Wives’ Club was running successfully and it is hoped the Mothers’ Union would be an asset to Bream Church.
The Vicar concluded his remarks by saying that just a village church was not enough; the church must be alive. There was great work ahead and if all pulled their weight, and loyally pulled together we would win through. It was hoped that 1954 would see an improvement in all spheres of the social and spiritual life of the parish.
At the first meeting of the new P.C.C. Mr. W. Watson was elected Vice-Chairman and treasurer and Miss Ursula Price secretary.
The Mothers’ Union: The Rev Emrys Evans, Viney Hill, was the
speaker at the meeting on Feb. 8th and said what an invaluable "inner
circle” of the church an effective M.U. could be.
The Young Wives’ Club met twice, for a Beetle Drive and a Cookery Demonstration.
Jan. 24—Elizabeth Irene Isles, Mill Hill, Bream.
Feb. 6—David Malcolm Preest, Woodside, Bream.
Mary Ann Miles, aged 83, Mill Hill, Bream.
Number of Communicants and Collections:
Jan 17—19 £2...15....0d
Jan 24—21 £1... l9s...5d
Jan 31—17 £1... 4s....0d.
Feb. 2—27 £l... l0s...11d
Church Cleaners for the year: List in the church porch.
This is the season in which the church, in her wisdom, has set aside for us to "take stock" in. To pause each year, on our way— and in our ways, to see how our business is going; what we are spend and how we are saving; what is the profit and what is the loss. No ship sets out to sea without a compass; no business can prosper without book-keeping. Much time is spent on the charts and accounts, is not the soul of man worth equal care?
Well may our Saviour ask: "What shall a man give in exchange for for his soul?" So, Lent is the acceptable time. It is the call of God for man to think, and to ask himself if he has wandered from and loitered on the road to Heaven. I trust I that you will do your utmost to attend Evensong on Tuesday evening and the special Service on Ash Wednesday (March 3rd) in the Green Hut at 7.15 pm. This is a joint service of the Young Wives’ Club and the Mothers’ Union to which all are invited, you and your friends And remember a well kept Lent means a happy Easter.
FROM HERE AND THERE
At a religious Quiz the following question was asked. "What is an Ember Day?” Answer: An Ember Day is the only day is the year on which the Church of England is allowed to burn incense.”
The children of a day school were asked what song was sung by the Blessed Virgin at her Visitation. Without any hesitation the first answer was "Magna Charta."
A much loved Grannie had died at a ripe old age. The small grandson was told that Grannie had gone to live with God. An awe-struck little voice ejaculated: "Gosh how posh!"
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