Into your hands, O Lord,
we humbly entrust our brother Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. In this life you embraced him with your tender love,
and opened to him the gate of heaven. The old order has passed away,
as you welcome him into paradise,
where there will be no sorrow, no weeping nor pain, but the fullness of peace and joy
with your Son and the Holy Spirit for ever and ever.
Most merciful God,
whose wisdom is beyond our understanding,
surround the Queen and the Royal Family with your love, that they may not be overwhelmed by their loss,
but have confidence in your goodness, and strength to meet the days to come. We ask this through Christ our Lord.
We move from ‘Hosanna' to ‘Crucify', and then to ‘Hallelujah, He is Risen!'.
This season of the church year encompasses so many aspects of faith and human experience that it challenges and blesses us on all levels.
Are we hopeful, snatching at good news, seeing but not altogether getting the picture? The Triumphal Entry on Palm Sunday holds a poignant balance of confidence and apprehension, for the story is not yet over. Are we grieving, in pain, desolate, ashamed or guilty? The Crucifixion speaks to our distress and offers forgiveness. Do we rejoice, feel overwhelmed by joy and wonder, and yet need to understand further? Easter morning comes with an almost incredible statement of new life in the Resurrection of Jesus.
As a Deanery, we are blessed in many ways and I hope that each one of us can speak of some particular blessing in our parishes and projects. We are also challenged to look at things afresh, and to apply faith to new and emerging situations. One major change is that we are now working in partnership with Crewkerne Deanery, so our boundaries are extending as we welcome this collaborative ministry with laity and clergy over the combined area from Haselbury Plucknett to Pitminster.
Constantly, we are all very aware of the urgent need to address matters of climate change and eco-responsibility, globally and locally and our responsibility to protect the lives of others by the way we live as Christians and in our stewardship of church buildings and land.
God's love includes all of us, so we are also beginning a discussion on matters of faith, sexuality and gender, connecting with the Church of England report ‘Living in Love and Faith'.
Beneath, and of foundational importance, there is each parish and all who live therein. As times change, we look forward to seeing more lay leadership at parish level, along with anticipated changes in clergy deployment.
In all of this, we do indeed need a Saviour, and the essential confidence of Resurrection as we walk onwards.
May God bless and guide each of us through the Easter season, in the name of Jesus our Risen Lord,
Revd Judith Abbott
On this website, you will find various pages including:
Prayer, Art & Music, and What Matters, for our ongoing engagement with community and global matters such as modern-day slavery and Green issues.
For now, while our physical space is confined, may our hearts and minds be free to love God and neighbours in all the ways we can, and we continue to pray for all who are suffering or working to relieve the ill effects of Covid-19.
We are a group of six Benefices and two single Parishes in South Somerset; we are part of the Taunton Archdeaconry. As members of the Church of England and in common with all Christians, we are inspired by the love of God and are committed to following the Way of Christ in our lives and our worship.
If you would like to know more about Christian faith, please do be in touch with any of us and we would be delighted to talk to you. We aim to make all of our 36 churches open and accessible, and you will be welcomed at any service on Sundays or weekdays.
We also want to share the love of God and the hope we have been given in our communities.
Our particular Deanery mission is to ask ourselves:
which means; what is important to the people of our parishes? What are the real concerns of daily life? What kind of issues are there for communities or the natural environment in our area?
And then: Who is part of the response to these matters? Which are the organisations involved already, or might become involved, and how do we as Church members join in or initiate a caring and effective response?
What matters a great deal to us is the safety and well being of all members of our communities and as churches we operate careful Safeguarding Policy practices.
We hope that you will be able to use this website to find information, and to join in our vision of deepening and extending the work of the Holy Spirit in the Deanery.
Revd Judith Abbott