2012 – June
Are you excited about the Jubilee I wonder or were you already tired of bunting, Union Jacks and all things red, white and blue, long before the start of June? Perhaps, in all the talk of street-parties, community events and national pride, it is easy to forget the woman at the centre of this celebration, Queen Elizabeth the Second.
In relation to the Church of England, the Queen is the Supreme Governor, but more than just a figure-head, The Queen has demonstrated a quietly stated but firm Christian faith. Indeed, last year’s televised Christmas Message included her own view on what lies at the centre of Christianity:
“God sent into the world a unique person – neither a philosopher nor a general, important though they are, but a Saviour, with the power to forgive.
Forgiveness lies at the heart of the Christian faith. It can heal broken families, it can restore friendships and it can reconcile divided communities. It is in forgiveness that we feel the power of God’s love.”
Inspired by the good news of God’s love and forgiveness for all, the PCC of St Helen’s & St Peter’s has purchased a large number of special Diamond Jubilee Editions of the New Testament. It is our hope and prayer that many in our village and beyond will be blessed with the gift of God’s Word, and, just like the Queen, find comfort and guidance through its teachings. Perhaps you know someone who you could bless with a gift which is so much more than a souvenir of the Jubilee? Who would come to mind if you had one of these New Testaments to give away? From Sunday 27th May you will be able to come take one or more of these free books from St Helen’s Church – we are delighted to make them freely available to anyone, as our gift to commemorate 60 years of dedicated service from Queen Elizabeth. For example, we have already arranged to send 40 to an orphanage in Cambodia – where will yours go?
And as part of the village celebrations, there will be a special service for the Jubilee, at St Helen’s Church, Sunday 3rd June at 10am. To mark the occasion, this will be a combined service, and so there will be no 10am service at St Peter’s or 11.15 service at St Helen’son the 3rd*. All in the village are most welcome to join us, as we give thanks for the Queen’s life and reign.
As we marvel at the fortitude and dignity of a lady who has publically served her country for such a long time, perhaps those of us who serve the King of Kings would do well to learn from her conscientious sense of duty. Because if each of us served God with the grace and determination that Her Majesty has displayed, that really would be something to celebrate!
* All are also warmly invited to our annual open-air service at St Helen’s School, which this year is on Father’s Day – 10 am, 17th June.