Prayers

The cattle grazing

From The Creed Prayer, poems of the Western Highlanders

Smooth pastures, long, and wide to roam,

Beneath your hoofs, rich meadowland,

Friend God the Son to bring you home

To fields where springs eternal stand,

Fields where springs eternal stand.

Shield Me

Editor:  A prayer for Trinity Sunday…

O may God shield me, and may God fill,

O may God watch me, and may God hold;

O may God bring me where peace is still,

To the King’s land, eternity’s fold.

Praise to the Father, praise to the Son,

Praise to the Spirit, the Three in One.

Titwillow

Editor:  During the lockdown, we are forbidden from driving to beauty spots and walking in National Trust parks. I wonder what the birds make of it all?

(With apologies to WS Gilbert)

On a tree by a river sat little Tom Tit

Singing ‘willow, titwillow, titwillow’.

His mate fluttered in and beside him did sit,

Singing ‘willow, titwillow, titwillow’.

“Oh, where are the people?” bewildered, he cried,

“Tis many a day since a soul I have spied”

“I think,” said his wife, “they’re all staying inside!”

“Oh willow, titwillow, titwillow”.

“I do like the quiet, I do like the peace!

“Oh, willow, titwillow, titwillow,

“But find myself wondering why did they cease

“Singing willow, titwillow, titwillow?”

“The people in hundreds of cars they all came

“Especially when there was no sign of much rain,

“The weather’s so nice, it seems such a shame!

“Oh willow, titwillow, titwillow!”

“I think I can tell you!” – she’d a smile on her beak,

Singing willow, titwillow, titwillow,

“For I saw some people last Saturday week,

“Singing willow, titwillow, titwillow,

“They stood in a group, they were flying a kite,

“Along came a police car with lights flashing bright,

“It seems the Old Bill gave those people a fright!

“Oh willow, titwillow, titwillow!”

A buzzard, above them, then uttered his ‘mew’

Oh willow, titwillow, titwillow.

As quick as they could off to safety they flew,

Singing willow, titwillow, titwillow!

Arrived at their nest then our avian pair

Correctly concluded what caused human scare:

“They’re frightened of critters that fly in the air!

“Oh willow, titwillow, titwillow!”

By Nigel Beeton

St Sofa’s

Editor: “Simon, my vicar, was completely unfazed by the closure of his church in March. The very next week he’d set up ‘Zoom’ and many of us have been weekly attenders of his ‘virtual church’ for the weeks now. I realise that many other churches are doing the same, but we’ve had people join us from all over the place! Of course, we all look forward to getting back to St Mary’s, but it has brought the congregations together in ways that we could never have imagined. This poem began one recent Sunday morning when I said to my wife, Carol, “let’s go and worship at St Sofa’s”. That inspired her and so the first verse of this poem is hers, not mine!

We worship at St Sofa’s now

Since Covid came to stay

We don’t dress up or do our hair

But still we come to pray!

Our Vicar is a clever chap

A Zoom with his IT

And so we sit down ev’ry week

And meet up virtually!

Our Parish Church stands empty

With praise she does not ring;

But still her people gather round

To pray, and praise, and sing!

The virus is a nasty thing

Yet it has helped us see

The church is NOT a building

But folk like you and me!

By Nigel and Carol Beeton

In the Day of Trouble

There is a God who answers prayer

Who intercedes before the throne

The Son of God who ever cares

Who walks with us, we’re not alone.

Though flood and pestilence should come

He sees the path that we now tread

His rod and staff will comfort us

He knows the days that lie ahead.

We trust in Him who knows all things

And lift our prayers to heaven above

Our confidence is all in Him

Encompassed by unfailing love.

By Megan Carter

Planted in the love of the Father

Planted in the love of the Father

You can grow, dear one,

You can grow.

Watered by the spring of the Spirit

His fruit you’ll show,

His fruit you’ll show.

And when the sun scorches,

And the thorns threaten,

And the storms around life’s garden blow –

Your roots will hold,

And hold secure, 

Because you’re planted in the love of the Father.

By Daphne Kitching

Saint Michael

Editor:  September sees St Michael and All Angels Day.  Here are a few lines from an ancient Celtic poem about the archangel…

Saint Michael, angel of the sea,

Lord of the horses he,

Saint Michael, of the angels king,

Of war, of shepherding;

On steed he flies across the skies;

The first-fruits of the harvest corn,

The first-fruits of the flock-lambs born,

Are his, he meets the soul forlorn.

The saints and angels watch o’erhead,

Their wings and prayers o’erspread:

The righteous ones in heaven wait,

St Peter at the gate;

In might arrayed they shield and aid;

Be with us e’er, archangel powers,

Be with us, angels, life’s long hours.

A cup of joy!

Editor:  “One facility that has now reopened after lockdown is the tea shop. Oh, how I’ve missed tea shops!”

A tea shop is a wondrous place

Where I for one just love to be!

A place to rest from life’s harsh pace

And sit and drink a cup of tea!

Indeed, it’s time to take a rest!

From all life’s pressures, take a break!

And just today it might be best

To have a slice of home-made cake!

Advent Wreath Prayer

Blessed are you, sovereign Lord, just and true: 

to you be praise and glory for ever. 

Your prophet John the Baptist was witness 

to the truth as a burning and shining light. 

May we your servants rejoice in 

his light, and so be led to witness to him 

who is the Lord of our coming kingdom, 

Jesus our Saviour and King of the ages. 

Blessed be God for ever.Lord Jesus, light of the world, 

John told the people to prepare, for you were very near. 

as Christmas grows closer day by day, 

help us to be ready to welcome you now.

Amen