St Augustine’s Church, Grove Park 336 Baring Road, SE12 0DX  Vicar: Rev. Gavin Berriman

Dear All

As I write this letter the figures for COVID-19 in this area are still very high so the church will remain closed for public worship until things change.  Most other churches in this area are doing the same and are opting for on-line worship.  Martin has kindly agreed to produce on-line Eucharists for the time being so they will begin again this week.  I am sorry to those who cannot access them but you will continue to be sent readings and reflections with the weekly pastoral letter.  The Eucharist will continue to be celebrated in church on Sunday’s and Wednesday’s at 10am on your behalf.  Following the Sunday Eucharist, the church will be open for silent prayer between 10.30am and 11.30am, and holy communion will be administered at 10.45 and 11.15 should you wish to receive it. Because of the extreme circumstances the church will not be open on a Wednesday morning.  I hope this situation will not go on for too long, but while it does, we have to do all that we can to keep everyone safe.

As I wrote in my letter last week please do not hesitate to get in touch if you need to talk.  I realise just how difficult Lockdown can be, especially for those who live alone, please let me know if there is anything you need.  I continue to offer prayers daily in church and to pray for each of you, and it is lovely knowing that many are joining me in those prayers from home.

Lent is just around the corner and begins the middle of next month. It seems strange that it was towards the end of Lent last year that all this began and we went into our first Lockdown. There will be a Lenten booklet again this year with a reflection for each day of Lent, along with further reflections on our Lenten blog. The theme will be “Communing with God in Nature’s Temple”.  Each reflection will look at various aspects of our beautiful world, and how nature connects us with God’s Presence in life. The overall theme will be to encourage people to get outdoors this Lent and enjoy God’s Presence in our gardens, in parks, in the woods, and in other open green spaces.  I will write more about it nearer the time.

While the church is closed to communal worship and we endure another Lockdown, the need to provide for our local food banks becomes even more crucial.  The longer this pandemic goes on the more families are beginning to feel the pinch and struggle to make ends meet.  We continue to support the Mottingham Food Bank and food can be left at the church.  If you cannot bring food on a Sunday morning when the church is open it can always be left outside the church door.  I am over in church several times a day and will always take it in.

May God continue to bless you and hold you in His holy care.

                                                           You continue to be in my love and prayers.


Father Gavin’ Pastoral Letter - Saturday 16 January 2021

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