Third Sunday before Advent & Remembrance Sunday 8th November

Good Evening to you all,

Service, Readings, Reflection and Prayers  for this Sunday,

Many thanks to David, Shirley, Noreen and Marion for the service and to Katie who recorded it for us.

Some thoughts on the readings

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

In this letter, Paul is writing to encourage the infant Christian community who believe that Christ second coming will happen shortly and they might miss it if it happens after they die. So he is reassuring them that there will be life with Jesus when they die and that they would see him again.

That there was life beyond this earthly life and that life was with Jesus. To reassure them that they should not grieve as people without hope.

At the time there was a big difference between Greek thought and Jewish though on the afterlife.

The prevailing Greek thought was best summed up on the often quoted inscription on a pagan tomb from the time, “I was not, I became; I am not, I care not.” In other words: “When you’re dead, you’re dead!” and that is that, live for the moment.

 “Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die.”

The Jewish tradition on life after death was an evolving one and belief in resurrection was gaining acceptance.

However the greatest change in attitude to life after death came about with belief in the resurrection of Christ. “For us,” St Paul wrote so that when we die then we will be with the lord

That teaching then as it is now is a reminder as well as a challenge  to us:

1. That if we know the lord in this life,then we will know him in the next. 

2. Those that live all their lives close to Christ in the here and now will never be unprepared to enter his presence or to know him in the next life.

3. This reading can be a reminder to us to be prepared, not to let things go too late

Matthew 25:1-13

The Story of the ten bridesmaids, Five of them had let their oil lamps run dry, they were then of no use when the bridegroom appeared late in the evening waiting to be escorted to his wedding. However the other five had them all topped up and were ready to escort the bridegroom to the wedding.

In our day it is the bride who is the centre of attention, it is the bride who shines, and it is she who has centre stage on her wedding day.

In the days of Jesus it was the Bridegroom who was the centre of attention and it was the role of the bridesmaids to escort him to illuminate him and to allow him to shine.

Jesus was hinting then and is saying to us today through the pages of scripture that:

·        We are the bridesmaids

·        That he is the groom

Our calling is to make him shine to illuminate him to reveal his presence and to make his values shine through our witness.

And we can only do that when we get to know him, spend time with him and become familiar and enthused by his teachings and values to the extent that they shine through our words and deeds.

Gods Spirit is also like the oil that we heard mentioned in those lamps. It is that oil that we need to keep us burning brightly with Gods love. If we don’t keeping ourselves topped up, by forgetting to pray or when we stop listening to his word then we won’t be able to respond either as our lamps will be running on empty. Hence the final hymn Give me oil in my lamp keep me burning.


·        Prayers.

·        For those who have had to postpone their weddings for the moment.

·        For those separated from loved ones.

·        For those who are working for peace throughout the world.

·        For those who so generously support our parish.

·        For all those affected by the temporary closure of businesses.

·        For those who work in healing and healthcare.

·        For those striving to develop treatments and vaccines for Covid-19.

·        For those who grieve for loved ones.

·        For those who still remember loved ones who died in the first and second world wars and many other wars since then.


Give me Oil in my lamp keep me burning