3rd May 2020

4th Sunday of Easter

Dear all,

We live in a time when many people are asking some of the really big questions of life and death. One of the biggest, most obvious, questions that people might ask is “If God is all-loving and all-powerful, then why doesn’t he just put an end to coronavirus?” It’s a reasonable question and one worth thinking about and reflecting on for ourselves. The bible tells us that the world is not the way God intended it to be it is fallen, or broken, as a consequence of the corruption and evil that has entered it. We say in the Lord’s Prayer ‘your kingdom come and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven’, precisely because God’s will is not always done on earth.

In Romans 8:22 St Paul tells us that the whole of creation is groaning, waiting for the time when it will be liberated from its bondage to decay. So why doesn’t God just end this bondage now? It is perhaps helpful to remind ourselves of the cosmic battle between good and evil that is raging all around us. This is a battle, not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual principalities and powers (Ephesians 6:12). Through the death and resurrection of Jesus the victory is certain, the decisive blow has been struck, but this battle is not yet over. Coronavirus, along with all the other evils in the world, will ultimately be banished by Jesus when he comes again in glory to renew the whole of creation (Revelation 21:1-5). Meanwhile the battle rages on. But we are not passive observers, as Christians we are part of the solution, we are part of God’s army called to bring light and hope into the world through our prayers and actions. And let us remember that we have a God who is not remote or insulated from the suffering in the world, but chose to enter it and to suffer alongside us.

If you have 25 minutes to spare then you may find this talk from Spring Harvest helpful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HuJNHQ01vc8&t=19s



10:00                   Morning Worship – telephone conference

Phone: 03300 945 940

Room number: 60527473 #

PIN: 2656 #

12:00                   Morning Worship – live on Facebook

Revd Phill Harrison will repeat the reading, the sermon and lead some short prayers.  Go to our Facebook page ‘Wroughton and Wichelstowe Parish Church’

4pm                    Church at 4  via Zoom – join the Church at 4 group on our Facebook page for the meeting invite and password.



12:00                  Let’s will be live on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/1168029310066050/

5th Sunday of Easter

Sunday 10th May

10:00                   Morning Worship

Preacher:            Tracy Mason

Intercessions:    Diane Phillips

Reading:             Acts 5: 12-25

Reader:               Helen Toomer

12.00                   Morning Worship live on Facebook

Revd Phill Harrison will repeat the reading, the sermon and lead some short prayers.  Go to our Facebook page ‘Wroughton and Wichelstowe Parish Church’

4pm                    Church at 4

via Zoom – join the Church at 4 group on our Facebook page for the meeting invite and password.

10am service by telephone

Our Sunday morning service is an audio meeting that people can dial into using just their telephones – no computers involved! Follow these instructions to join:

  • To join the Sunday service first dial this number: 03300 945 940.
  • When prompted, enter the room number, followed by # on your telephone keypad: 60527473 #
  • Finally, enter the guest PIN: 2656 #
  • You may have to listen to some announcements, but you will then be automatically joined to the conference call. Join in with the responses in the liturgy as you would normally.

Please try and dial-in at 9:55, as it may take a little while for everyone to be connected to the conference. Calls to ‘03’ numbers are charged at the standard national rate and are included in your ‘free minutes’ if you have a call-plan. Revd Phill has delivered service sheets and dial-in instructions to a number of people that we know don’t use email, or for whom we have no email address. If you know someone who doesn’t have email and would like to be included please let us know so that he can drop something through their letterbox.

Wild Worship

For those of you able to get out for walks (but also suitable for those confined to a garden), there is a lovely resource I’ve been using from the Sanctuary Centre, that explores the richness of the connection between creation and worship, and relates what you might see when you’re out to a verse of scripture. It’s very simple and can be used as a gateway to prayer or praise outside in our wonderful natural world.  I’ve found it very helpful at this time.  If you want to take a look the link is here:   https://www.thesanctuarycentre.org/resources/creative_prayer_idea_wild_worship_field_guide.pdf

Easter to Pentecost – the book of Acts

During the period of time from Easter to Pentecost we will be reading through the book of Acts together as a church. Our sermons will pick up some of the key themes in Acts and this also ties in with the theme from Spring Harvest. If you would like a book to read alongside this then we suggest the Spring Harvest theme book for this year ‘Unleashed: The Acts Church Today’ by GAVIN CALVER and ANNE CALVER (available in Kindle and paperback). Daily readings from Acts are now appearing on our Facebook page, or a reading plan is attached. Like the disciples, we now find ourselves in a world where everything has changed – what can they teach us about the way ahead and what might the Holy Spirit be inspiring us to do now?


There are lots of really great teaching, worship and prayer sessions for all ages on the Spring Harvest YouTube channel. The good news is that, due to popular demand, they have extended the time during which these resources will be available for free – you can now catch-up until the end of May. If you haven’t ‘dipped in’ yet then these really are recommended. You can watch something for a few minutes and if you decide you don’t like it, find something else – you have nothing to lose!

Daily Hope – free prayer hotline

The archbishop of Canterbury has launched a 24-hour free phone line for Christian worship and prayer, aimed at those who have no or limited access to the internet. People calling the free phone number will hear a greeting from the archbishop and can then choose from a range of options including hymns, prayers, reflections and advice on Covid-19. Daily Hope is available on 0800 804 8044.

Envelope scheme

Weekly or monthly giving envelopes with cheques in can be sent to the Parish Office (by post or put through the letterbox); they will be collected once a week. Thank you to those who have been doing this. You can also now give by card through our website http://wroughton.com/?page_id=2576 and if you pay tax you can gift aid your donation.

Parish giving scheme

The parish giving scheme is still functioning, with all members of staff working remotely.  If you need to contact them to amend your giving or for Gift Aid changes, please either ring them on 0333 002 1260 or email: info@parishgiving.org.uk. They are able to receive instructions by post again at their new address Parish Giving Scheme, 76 Kingsholm Road, Gloucester. GL1 3BD.  In addition they can now able to sign up new donors by phone, if you are interested in this please go to  https://register.parishgiving.org.uk/. You will need our Parish Name (Wroughton & Wichelstowe) and Reference Number (050605188).  If you have any questions please contact Ross Fralley our treasurer treasurer@wroughton.com.

Ordination – change of plans

Thank you for those that have contacted me about the plans for my Ordination and the prayers  – it has meant a lot to know I have been remembered.

As you can imagine, as a lot of things at present, plans for my Ordination have had to change. My Ordination has been postponed from the 5th July to a date to be announced, but not before September. I have therefore, had to change my plans a little around leaving the Civil Service, so will now leave my current employment on the 31st August. Subject to restrictions because of Covid 19, I am still hoping to move to Westbury on Trym at the end of June, so I can settle into my new home and start getting to know the area and congregation.

As like all of us,  I look to the time when we can all come together again physically in Church to worship – if this cannot be before the end of June, then I will look forward to coming back to see you all before my Ordination.  With prayers and blessings to you all. Cheryl  

Swindon Food Bank

Food banks are still open, and the independent food bank for Swindon – Swindon Food Collective – is continuing to help local households. If you can, do consider making a financial contribution at this time.  Donations can be made via the website:  https://www.swindonfoodcollective.org/

Church building closure

The Bishops have instructed that church buildings should now be closed for all private prayer – including by priests. This is a sad step and one that we did not expect. However, the motivation behind it is so that the church of England can be seen to be taking a lead in showing our communities how we must behave in order to slow down the spread of the Coronavirus. Whilst it is closed, the church will be floodlit as a visible reminder to the village (and the M4!) that hope shines in darkness – and that hope is Jesus.

Parish Office

Our Parish Office has temporarily relocated to Janet Burchell’s dining room! The telephone number and opening hours remain the same: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 9am to 1.30pm 01793 812050 (email: office@wroughton.com)

Mission to Seafarers Knitting 

Got time on your hands? Why not join the army of knitters and make hats for the Mission to Seafarers . These are given to seafarers who may have been recruited in warmer climes and then travel to colder areas. For more information please contact Janet Henderson 525856.

Funeral this week

Please pray for the families and friends of Mary Rogers, Rodney Sansum, Francis Embling, David Lane and Nora Meaden as their funerals take place. 

And finally, a prayer for this week:

O God,
help me to trust you,
help me to know that you are with me,
help me to believe that nothing can separate me
from your love
revealed in Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Parish Office, Priors Hill, Wroughton, SN4 0RT

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 9am to 1.30pm

01793 812050.  office@wroughton.com

Revd Phill Harrison – 01793 812301 vicar@wroughton.com

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