SUNDAY 1 JANUARY - THE NAMING OF JESUS HYMNS: 40, 33, 39, 31
FIRST READING: Numbers 6.22–27
The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying, “Thus you shall bless the Israelites: You shall say to them,
The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace.”
So they shall put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.’
RESPONSORIAL PSALM 8
R Your name, O Lord, is exalted in all the world!
1 O Lord our governor, how exalted is your name in all the world!
2 Out of the mouths of infants and children your majesty is praised above the heavens.
3 You have set up a stronghold against your adversaries, to quell the enemy and the avenger. R
4 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars you have set in their courses,
5 What are mortals, that you should be mindful of them?
mere human beings, that you should seek them out?
6 You have made them little lower than the angels; you adorn them with glory and honour. R
7 You give them mastery over the works of your hands; and put all things under their feet,
8 All sheep and oxen, even the wild beasts of the field,
9 The birds of the air, the fish of the sea, and whatsoever walks in the paths of the sea.
10 O Lord our governor, how exalted is your name in all the world! R
SECOND READING: Galatians 4.4–7
When the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, in order to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as children. And because you are children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, ‘Abba! Father!’ So you are no longer a slave but a child, and, if a child, then also an heir, through God.
GOSPEL: Luke 2.15–21
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.’
So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child; and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen,
as it had been told them.
After eight days had passed, it was time to circumcise the child; and he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel.
Could you pass this sheet on to someone else who might like to see it?
NEWS FROM ST MICHAEL'S
A Happy New Year and a warm welcome to any new readers, and to visitors and newcomers to St Michael's, as we keep this Feast of the Circumcision and Naming of Jesus. A special welcome to our celebrant Fr Paul, who will also kindly celebrate Mass for us on Thursday at 10.30 am. If you are new to St Michael's, please join us for tea or coffee in the Vestry Hall after Mass, so that we can welcome you properly.
FREE copies of Together can still be found at the back of the church. Pick one up, take it home, discover more about other parishes like our own, and use it in your prayers!
From Practice to Perfect is the title of a new booklet issued by the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers and dealing with how Church Bell Ringers are trained, safeguarded and organised, as well as with such seemingly basic questions as “Why ring?” If you Google the title, you can find a copy online; PCC members and safeguarding officers should find it particularly informative, but it will be appreciated by anyone who has an interest in ringing, or who has a friend or family member who would like to know more.
The PCC meets on 12th January. If you would like an item included in the Agenda, please mention it as soon as possible to Paul or Eleanor.
Help, please! Please speak to Paul if you can volunteer for welcoming or refreshments in the coming weeks. Also, while it has become customary here to leave the Crib in place until Candlemas, we shall be dismantling the rest of the Christmas decorations after Epiphany, on Saturday 7^th^ January at 9 am. Any help will be most welcome.
A FREE Online Safeguarding Conference, organised annually by the dioceses of Canterbury and Rochester, takes place on 21^st^ January from 9 am to 12.30 pm. Everyone is invited, and you can book a ticket at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/annual-conference-2023-partnerships-in-creating-safer-church-tickets-474612728447.
Church, School and Household can and should come together to nourish children and young people in their Christian faith. This is the message and purpose of a new diocesan hub, “Growing Faith”, full of resources for anyone who comes into contact with youngsters in whichever context. You can find it at: https://canterburydiocese.org/childrenandyoungpeople/growing-faith/.
Parish Giving Scheme: From small beginnings in Gloucester Diocese, this now covers 34 dioceses including our own, and our parish is taking steps to become part of it. It relieves treasurers of various administrative burdens, notably the Gift Aid processing. Pilot parishes have found it most helpful in maintaining their cash flow: in December 2022 the Scheme processed over 74 000 donations and £1.1 million in - monthly - Gift Aid, the latter taking only a few days to reach church bank accounts. We shall be hearing more about all this, but in the meantime, there is explanation, and a chance to attend a January information session, on the diocesan website: visit https://canterburydiocese.org/financial-giving.php.
From our Tower
Kent County Association, Maidstone, Kent, St Michael and All Angels:
Wednesday, 28 December 2022 in 2h 42 (6–1–24 in C) 5040 Stedman Triples
W.A.Cave (6 single variation)
1Adam A Brady
2Jason R Turnock
3Michael A Birkbeck
4Paul N Mounsey
5Stephen Coaker (C)
6David J Dearnley
8Neil W Jones
Rung half-muffled on the Innocents' Day.