2nd Sunday of Advent 09.12.18

 There will be collection this weekend for Number Five Homeless Charity – Cash please in order for the Parish to purchase the necessary vouchers.  

Christmas Offerings
The Finance Committee would like to remind you that all Christmas monetary gifts for Father David should be placed in an envelope clearly marked with “Father David”. This includes cash or cheques made payable to “David Osborne”. ​Pre-addressed envelopes will be ​available at the back of both Bramley and Cranleigh churches. Any loose cash or unmarked envelopes placed in the collection plate will be assumed to be a gift to the Parish funds.”

Dear Brothers and Sisters

I was struck by the force of the first poem in Janet Morley’s Advent collection “Haphazard by Starlight” – the poem is called Advent Calendar and is by the former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams.  I am aware as I write this that not everyone likes poetry or even understands it but this one did really speak to me of the purpose of Advent.  It is about a world “groaning in expectation” to use St Paul’s pithy phrase as it awaits its saviour.  So, the poem is about life and death, about stillness and waiting, about expectation and apprehension, about so many things that we find hard to articulate.  Of course, being a poem rather than any other sort of writing it is sometimes opaque and indirect, having multiple meanings or, better, suggestiveness, that engage the heart and mind rather than just the intellect.  And of course, that is the mystery of the incarnation – a child when we hoped for a warrior, a refugee family when we expected a royal family, a small backwater town when we had thought all along it would be a capital city and so on.  I have printed the poem below so that you can read it for yourself.  I hope it might inspire you to buy the book which is excellent.

Advent Calendar

He will come like last leaf’s fall.
One night when the November wind
has flayed the trees to the bone, and earth
wakes choking on the mould,
the soft shroud’s folding.

He will come like frost.
One morning when the shrinking earth
opens on mist, to find itself
arrested in the net
of alien, sword-set beauty.

He will come like dark.
One evening when the bursting red
December sun draws up the sheet
and penny-masks its eye to yield
the star-snowed fields of sky.

He will come, will come,
will come like crying in the night,
like blood, like breaking,
as the earth writhes to toss him free.
He will come like child.

© Rowan Williams

With fondest best wishes Fr David


Please book your place for the Christmas lunch which takes place on 18th December in Bramley.Numbers are limited but we would very much welcome some Cranleigh parishioners who have been largely absent at the lunches in 2018, please ring Bev on 892712 (mark.bev@ btopenworld.com) or Dinah on 271241 (tyrolia@btinternet.com) before 15th December. Many thanks, Dinah


Sister Margaret will lead a Day of Reflection in Bramley on Saturday 15 December from 10.30am.  All are welcome to attend – please contact Bridget Eacott.


A Parishioner has a DAWES road bike for sale, please contact the Parish Office if you would like further information.


The next Cameo Evening will take place on Tuesday 8 January – further details will follow.


The Next over 50’s coffee morning will take place on Wednesday 12 December in the Cranleigh Parish Meeting Room from 10.30am.  All are welcome.


Saturday 15th December: Community Christmas Tea in the Bandroom from 2.30pm till 4.30pm.   It will be fun with a traditional English tea, festive food and musical entertainment. To reserve your place, plsae ring 01483 274376 and leave a message.  Transport is available for those who require it.


Community Christmas Day Lunch:  If you cannot be with family or friends on Christmas Day this year, you are warmly invited to a Churches Together event in St Nicolas Church Rooms.  There will be a traditional Christmas Lunch, carols, presents and entertainment. The event will run from 1pm to 4.30pm and everyone is welcome.  Please contact the Church Office on 01483 273620 to book and let us know of any dietary requirements and/or if you need transport.   This is a community event supported by local volunteers, charities and businesses.  Help would be appreciated on Christmas Eve from 10.30am to set up the Hall.


CASH COLLECTION – On the weekend of 8th and 9th December we will be having our annual Christmas collection for The Number Five Homeless project in York Road, Guildford after all masses.

The cash raised will enable us to purchase cinema vouchers and vouchers for The Friary shopping centre. If there is any money left over we will purchase mobile phone vouchers which can be used for emergency phone calls and for residents who are job seeking etc.

The presents which are given to each resident on Christmas morning make a huge difference to the residents and also are a great help to the staff, who have no other funds available to them for incidental needs and emergencies such as a taxi to A and E when the need arises, or for the occasional deserving birthday present . The residents themselves can be very moved by the fact that someone outside the hostel is thinking about them, especially at this time of the year .


Jane and Duncan Graham thank all those who donated warm clothes, bedding and more to the Refugees– this will directly go to those in need. Thank you.   Please note Jane collects throughout the year so if you are ever having a clear out please consider donating to this worthy cause.


Guildford’s peer support group for anyone facing depression or a related mental health conditionnow runs weekly at The Spike Community Centre, (next to St Luke’s Surgery and St Luke’s Square), Warren Road, Guildford, GU1 3JH every Wednesday evening, 7.30pm.  It’s free and offers a safe space to offload, to be heard and to receive support to help work through difficult times.  No need to book or be referred.  For more details see www.peertalk.org.uk/index.php/support-groups


You are warmly invited to attend our Advent Penitential Service on the 6th of December at 7.15 p.m. It will begin with a short service of songs, readings and a homily followed by confessions with any of the five priests resident in the Monastic Community of Chilworth. Profit from this opportunity to celebrate our Saviour’s birth with mind and heart reconciled with God and renewed in his love. St Augustine’s Abbey, Sample Oak Lane, Chilworth. GU4 8QR.  The Monastic Community. Chilworth.


 POKOT Christmas Lights

Fr Sean McGovern at the Rotu Mission has told me that the solar lamps have been such an incredible success that demand has increased way, way beyond the original 100 which he bought with our funding and he has ordered a further 80 for his parishioners at £6.50 per lamp which he hopes to pick up in Nakuru later this month. If anyone would like to buy a lamp for Christmas for a Rotu family, please let me know.


 POKOT A Medical Project

Fr Sean sees an urgent need to improve the medical service he can provide at his remote Mission’s clinic. To do this he needs to provide living accommodation for resident medics but at present has no accommodation to offer. He has therefore used the £3,000 we sent in our last transfer to start constructing a two bedroom/one sitting room house. So far the foundations have been laid and three rows of concrete blocks for the walls. To complete the project he needs to raise a whopping £15,000 and has asked if the Pound a Week Group could help even a little with the cost. He added “ I know that this is a big ask and I hesitated in approaching you as the Group have been generous beyond belief. Anything you can offer would be a great help”.

If anyone would like to contribute something towards the cost please let me know.  Best wishes  Eugene