The Parish Church of St John-at-Hampstead

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January 2018


Judy East


Remember the time of year
when the future appears
like a blank sheet of paper
a clean calendar, a new chance.
On thick white snow

you vow fresh footprints
then watch them go
with the wind's hearty gust.
So fill your glass. Here's tae us. Promises
made to be broken, made to last.

Jackie Kay (from Light Unlocked published by Enitharmon Press)

Encouraging? Depressing?  Do you make resolutions and feel bad if/when you break them?  Or perhaps you make resolutions and stick to them?  Perhaps you made a resolution once that changed your life?  I suppose people do, though according to the Huffington Post, only 8% of us are that strong-willed, or perhaps sufficiently realistic to choose attainable targets!
Because December's always so busy I find myself making a mental list (or sometimes even a written one) of things I'll deal with in January.  and it always includes the intention to "sort" a cupboard, a drawer, a box which has become overloaded with things I've shoved into it in the course of a hectic autumn. Parish Pump, the live-saving website for magazine editors, is starting a series on de-cluttering, the first instalment of which I've put into this issue.  It's a subject Ann Morisy addressed to much acclaim for PSALM and for  Holiday in Hampstead but you can't revisit it too often.

The Tea Service is on the move!
Rather than trying to bring people to us we're going to them - from January the Tea Services will be held in the Day Centre at Henderson Court.  We're all very excited about this move which will present some challenges but also, and more importantly, an opportunity to reach more people, some of whom wouldn't be able to make it to the church.  Dates won't be quite as regular because we have to fit in with other bookings but the first one will be on 14th January - please pray for the team going from the church and for the residents who will attend.

Stations of the Cross
I've heard from a few people already.  If you're planning to contribute please contact me and let me know which Station you'd like to do BEFORE you start, in case it's been snapped up by someone else.  Deadline is only 6 weeks away! (12th February)

Sermon for January
It's often difficult to choose a sermon for the magazine when the previous month has been taken up with a very specific set of ideas.  All the sermons from Advent are on our website - - but I've gone out on a limb and reproduced one from somewhat earlier in the year that people have asked to revisit.  (Incidentally, our preachers are shrinking violets when it comes to being asked for their sermons to feature in the magazine so do let me know if you have a particular request - I don't promise to follow it up, I can't put in more than one a month (!) but it's helpful to know what appeals to someone other than myself.

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