Updates From the Rector - May 2021

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- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -  Benefice Magazine - May 2021 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Dear Friends,

In time is on time!

Please find attached copy of the Benefice Magazine for May, with many thanks as always to Pam for her support in this.  I trust this finds you well and hope to see you soon.

Every good wish,


N P Heron

Rector of Wem, Lee Brockhurst and Weston-under-Redcastle

01939 232550

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -  Week Commencing 2nd May 2021 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Dear Friends,

Alleluia, Christ is Risen.  He is Risen indeed.  Alleluia!   

We are still in our great season of Easter so continued Easter greetings and best wishes.  It might have been a chilly week but the sun has largely been out and I hope you've been able to enjoy some of this, there's even been a little rain for those gardeners among you - don't worry its a BH on Monday so there will (inevitably) be plenty of rain to come!


There is nothing significant to add to the update in recent emails apropos the status of our public worship or church activities these as always may be found on our web site.

We do anticipate more changes as 17 May draws nearer but as this is provisional and as yet a little while off more anon.   As always up to date information may be found at Church of England website and latest updates on guidance are also on our diocesan website.


Yesterday I received a delightful email from Canon David Primrose from our cathedral (Canon Treasurer (Environment, Social Justice, Community Outreach).  He wrote:

"Each day we pray for a different deanery in the Cathedral. We will be praying for your deanery tomorrow, 1st May, in our private and our public prayers, in particular at the evening service.  Do let us know if you and any-one from your parishes are able to join us in the Cathedral for the Eucharist at 12.30 or Evening Prayer at 5.30pm. You can also join online, at Lichfield Cathedral | Facebook.  Apologies for the short notice, David"

I don't think the 'short notice' matters too much, what really, really counts is the reminder that we are joined together as the diocesan-wide body of Christ, his family; to know that we are prayed for as we pray for our Cathedral and Diocese; to hold to the great reality which is the whole Communion of which we are but one small part.


Wem Parish Church:  08:00 - Holy Eucharist

                                         09:45 - Holy Eucharist (with homily and hymn music)

Weston Parish Church:  09:30 - Holy Eucharist (with homily and hymn music)

Lee Parish Church:  11:15. - Holy Eucharist (with homily and hymn music)

For each service you will be pleased to read that the elementary and essential precautions we are now used to will, of course, apply:-

 *  Always sanitise hands on entry, after touching anything 'communal' and before Communion 

 *  Wear your mask whenever attending worship

 *  At all times keep to physical distancing -  the 2 metre rule

 *  As you would expect Communion will remain in 'one kind' and as yet we are not able to sing

 *  Follow any other guidance of the church wardens or sidespeople

There is now the caveat that all must leave directly after the service and not 'mingle' in church and outside adhere to the rule of 6 (which does, of course, include social distancing).

I cannot stress too strongly that it is, very clearly, absolutely fine and in order for any not to resume just yet if we feel individually that the time is not quite right and no one should feel under any pressure to do so; hopefully these continued emails will allow you to feel connected, they will continue providing details of on-line and media services, amongst which this week are:-



You may follow our Cathedral services for this Sunday by clicking of the above and following the necessary links -  many of you do and find this extremely helpful, if you haven't do have a 'visit'.


08:00 - Holy Communion (traditional language)

10:30 - Choral Holy Eucharist for the 5th Sun of Easter

17:30 - Evensong 



Access the C of E website to find details of this week's service which you can also watch during the week, it is available from 09:00.   Do visit the site, there are many excellent services saved on here which can still merit a 'watch'.

09:00:  Easter Four: 'Exploring Transformative Conversations'.  Hear from Rev Prebendary Sarah Schofield in this extract from our weekly worship.  From the University of Wolverhampton, the full online service explores transformative conversations with students and staff, alongside music and prayer.



Radio Four:  08:10 - '100 years: reflecting on the past - building a future together'.  A service led by the Church Leaders' Group, Ireland, marking the centenary of the partition of the island of Ireland and the formation of N Ireland.

BBC ONE:   10:45 - 'Sunday Morning Stories'.  Series Two, Episode Four.    This week sharing the inspirational story of the UK's first Muslim ballet school.  Inspirational stores rooted in faith hope and spirituality, with The Rev Kate Bottley.

                       13:15.  Songs of Praise.  'Northern Ireland's 100th'.  Clare McCollum marks the partition of Ireland and formation of N Ireland 100 years ago and meets Christians from across the denominations to discuss the past and their hopes for the future

Please find attached the readingsLive the Word (with a lovely small piece on music in church), and Homily for this Sun (courtesy of Redemptorist Publications).  Many thanks indeed to Mike Farmer for once again helping to break these down by week.  Also find attached our Local Prayer Diary and the Diocesan Prayer Diary.  


In a recent Easter letter Bishop Michael  encouraged and invited engagement in a diocesan teaching series 'Bread of Life' which began on Tue,11 Apr.  Having seen the first three in the series I can unhesitatingly say, that as we would expect, there is great food for thought and faith nurture in these. 

These are available, with a precis of the series, from 10:00 on the Tuesday of each week on the Bread Of Life webpage and will remain posted on the website through the summer. Where written texts of the presentations are provided, these will also be available with the talk.  Do please pay these a visit, they are (of course) well worth a watch and a gift to us all to enable an exploration in the comfort of our homes of the centrality of the Blessed Sacrament.  The first zoom Discussion Group, reflecting on these, met on Tuesday and unanimously found +Michael's first presentation hugely helpful.  If you wish to join the discussion group - it meets on Tuesday at 19:30 - simply let me know.


At this time of the year we often try to collect for, or gather in yearly set-asides, for the inestimable work of the Children's Society.  None of us should need a reminder of how critical this work always is yet the impact of the pandemic has made its ministry even more essential (whilst making it harder for the charity to fund-raise).  Penny Naylor has graciously offered to collect donations in Apr/May from across the Benefice, Penny's tel no is 01939 236807, this is a wonderful gesture by Penny, do please consider supporting the Children's Society through her co-ord:  "Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.”  Intriguingly/oddly/interestingly (delete as appropriate) Penny has noted a real difference in local giving to the CS between women and men church members.....bit odd don't you think?


If you have received this you should by now have received the May Benefice Mag.  If not it is available, as always on the links page of our web site or please drop me an email.


If all goes to schedule you will wish to know that in-person APCM/AGM will be possible (and legally necessary before 31 May) from 17 May.  We will know Lee Brockhurst's date for sure after the Eucharist this Sunday.  Weston's will be at 19:30 on 17 May and Wem's at 19:30 (preceded by a Eucharist at 19:00) on 24 May - Wem will also have a zoom PCC meeting at 19:30 on 10 May.


Please spend all the time you can looking at our NT reading set for this Sun, from John's First Letter (although most scholars agree that we don't actually know who wrote it).

God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them.

The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.

Wonderful words to hold to throughout the coming week.


Keep taking care, with every good wish,


N P Heron

Rector of Wem, Lee Brockhurst and Weston-under-Redcastle

01939 232550