Who do you think you are?

Who do you think you are? We are a people immersed in story

‘Who do you think you are?’ asks a television programme that explores some celebrity stories. From Judge Rinder to Ian McKellen. Mary Berry to Julie Walters.

What often makes the programme memorable is how relevant and helpful it is for people to learn how something of their ancestors’ story lives on in them. Of how they shared similar interests and motivations – knowing about them helps them know more about themselves.

As the youngest of six children I didn’t know my Mum’s parents at all. And though I knew my Dad’s indeed Nanny came to live with us for a time they were aged and not so interested in a youngster.

So, most of my sense of those who went before me comes in the form of the memories of others. Of hearing their recollections about what they were like, what they did and so on.

For example, there’s the entertaining Uncle. The not so nice Great Grandfather. The deaf Aunt with a lovely smile. I’m sure you all have similar stories to tell.

And to return to that beginning and the question ‘Who do you think you are?’

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An update on reopening our buildings

As businesses up and down the country begin to reopen, many churches are working towards doing the same. Here at St Mary’s we’re eager to open for worship, services and prayer once again, but our first concern is the safety of everyone who enters our buildings. For this reason taking things slower to make sure we’re doing them properly and at the right time.

At the moment we remain closed for all services – including weddings and funerals – as well as for private prayer. We are working hard to find ways to gradually reopen both our church building and Community Centre to as many people as possible, and we’ll be sharing our plans in due course.

We have no plans at the moment to stop providing our online and telephone services, meaning even after we begin to reopen you won’t need to attend in-person to join our worship. If you are currently shielding or self-isolating we continue to recommend you follow all official advice, and encourage you to get in touch if there are ways we can help.

Please continue to share your thoughts and comments with us, as well as join us online each Sunday and through the week.

The Coronavirus Management Team

Notices for 5 April 2020

Suspension of all public worship

To help prevent the spread of coronavirus all acts of public worship have been suspended until further notice. Please do not try to attend a service with us.

Videos for Holy Week

Throughout Holy Week we’re releasing videos with readings, prayer and more to help you worship. You can find all of these on our YouTube channel.

Join us for a live-streamed service

You can join us online for a small service streamed live from St Mary’s this morning at 10.00 am, at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/live. You can download or view the order of service for this from the same page.

If you can’t make the live service, you’ll be able to watch it in your own time once it’s finished.

Virtual coffee morning

After the Sunday service, we are planning to get together virtually for a chance to share a cup of tea or coffee and a chat. Please feel free to join us at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/meet/coffee.

Coronavirus update

You can always find the latest information on what we’re doing about the virus outbreak at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/coronavirus.

Notices for 29 March 2020

Suspension of all public worship

To help prevent the spread of coronavirus all acts of public worship have been suspended until further notice. Please do not try to attend a service with us.

Join us for a live-streamed service

You can join us online for a small service streamed live from St Mary’s this morning at 10.00 am, at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/live. You can download or view the order of service for this from the same page.

If you can’t make the live service, you’ll be able to watch it in your own time once it’s finished.

Virtual coffee morning

After the Sunday service, we are planning to get together virtually for a chance to share a cup of tea or coffee and a chat. Please feel free to join us at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/meet/coffee.

Coronavirus update

You can always find the latest information on what we’re doing about the virus outbreak at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/coronavirus.

The Church continues to be alive and active, but our buildings must close

We are seeing a huge increase in the number of people falling sick with COVID-19. We must distance ourselves from one another and prevent the spread of infection in order to save lives.

Therefore, as well as public worship being suspended, St Mary’s Church, Whitkirk and all church buildings in the Church of England are now closed for all services and prayer.

Our worship of God and our care for each other continue but cannot be done in the church building.

Our website contains details of how to join others online for prayer, worship, study, and community life.

The vicar can be contacted in an emergency by telephoning 0113 264 5790 or emailing [email protected]. Churchwardens may be contacted in an emergency on 07929 127190 or 07554 442788, or by emailing [email protected].

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength… Love your neighbour as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”

To protect the vulnerable amongst us, please do not leave your home except for essential trips.

Whitkirk goes live with service during coronavirus pandemic

Since the suspension of public worship by the Church of England earlier in the week, a small group at St Mary’s Church, Whitkirk have worked tirelessly to make sure the sense of community felt on a Sunday morning wasn’t lost. They did this by rolling out a live-streamed service to the entire parish and beyond, overcoming the challenges of broadcasting from an ancient church.

Vicar Matthew Peat prepared a service of the Word which followed many of the beats of the traditional Sunday morning eucharist, and with only five people in the church (all following strict hygiene and physical distancing measures) it provided four hymns, a sermon, two readings and intercessions.

Continue reading “Whitkirk goes live with service during coronavirus pandemic”

“Not a very tactile Vicar!”

“You’re not a very tactile minister are you!” were the closing words after visiting someone a few years ago. Perhaps they expected a hug when I left. And whilst I know I’m not a ‘hug a vicar’ type of cleric, I’m really not averse to a hug or putting my arm around someone as a sign of my support for them.

Over the last few weeks as we have struggled to cope with how to respond to Covid 19. The handshake which in our Eucharist symbolically expressed our desire for reconciliation and to be at peace with our neighbours was suspended.

It’s felt strange not to enact the words with that simple gesture, for actions in some ways do, as saying goes speak louder than words.

In the Gospels many of encounters Jesus had with people involved touch.
He touched people to heal them.
He washed people’s feet.
He was a very tactile Saviour.

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Notices for 22 March 2020

Suspension of all public worship

To help prevent the spread of coronavirus all acts of public worship have been suspended until further notice. Please do not try to attend a service with us.

Join us for a live streamed service

You can join us online for a small service streamed live from St Mary’s this morning at 10.00 am, at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/live. You can download or view the order of service for this from the same page.

If you can’t make the live service, you’ll be able to watch it in your own time once it’s finished.

Coronavirus update

On Friday we posted a large update on how we’re responding to coronavirus across everything we do here at St Mary’s. You can read this on our website.

You can always find the latest information on what we’re doing about the virus outbreak at whitkirkchurch.org.uk/coronavirus.