Remembering The Duke of Edinburgh

With the nation, we give thanks for the life of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

We give thanks for his love of our country, and for his devotion to duty.
We entrust him to God’s love and mercy, and hold in our prayers all who knew and loved him, the Royal Family, and most especially Her Majesty The Queen, as she grieves his loss.

If you wish to write a message of condolence in memory of His Royal Highness, please do so in the online book of condolence here.

Good Friday and Easter Day, 2nd and 4th April

If you were unable to join us online for our Good Friday meditation, it’s on our YouTube channel here. A hard copy is also available here to download, with images of the artworks and links to the pieces of music used:

Here also is a copy of my sermon from our Easter Day services, in St. John of Beverley, Whatton, and outdoors in the churchyard of St. Thomas, Aslockton, also available on YouTube and in podcast form:

It was great to have to have lots of children hunting Easter eggs in Aslockton churchyard after the service there, and also to have the outside of our churches decorated in celebration of the risen Jesus – here’s St. Mary, Orston, in all of its Easter finery!

May you all know God’s blessing this Eastertide,

Rev. Tim Chambers
Vicar
The Cranmer Group

E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk 
Phone: 01949 850523

Mobile: 07946 526569

Sunday Service, 28th March

Dear Cranmer Group Friends,

On Palm Sunday, we’ve come to the end of our Lent sermon series on Nehemiah, as we see his story of rebuilding Jerusalem end ultimately in failure. But we also look forward, in that same city of Jerusalem, to “the ‘true’ Nehemiah”, in the person of Jesus, entering on a donkey to the cries of “Hosanna!” from the crowds.

As usual, catch up with our service on our YouTube channel here or download the service transcript here, if you prefer:

And I’m delighted that we are back in our church buildings (well, inside one of them, and outside another of them, in fact!) on Easter Day, to join together in celebration of Jesus’s resurrection. Details of all our Holy Week and Easter Day gathering, both online and in person, are here.

May you know God’s blessings as we journey with Christ to the pain and suffering of cross, and then share with him in the joy of his glorious Resurrection.

With my love and prayers,

Rev. Tim Chambers
Vicar
The Cranmer Group

E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk 
Phone: 01949 850523

Mobile: 07946 526569

Sunday Service, 21st March

Dear Cranmer Group Friends,

This Sunday, I’m delighted to be able to welcome our good friend, Rev. Peter Watkins, whom many of you will know especially from Café Church. It’s great to have Peter with us, giving us his wisdom about how we worship the Lord. Looking at Chapter 12 of the Book of Nehemiah – when God’s people celebrated completing the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem – Peter shares with us how we are called make our worship of God joyful, holy, and sacrificial.

This coming week we too turn our eyes towards Jerusalem, so to speak, as we begin to think about Jesus’s entry into the Holy City on Palm Sunday, and the events of Holy Week. I’m very conscious that we’ve not yet communicated with you all about what our service pattern for Holy Week and Easter will be, since we’re waiting for official guidance as to what we can do in terms of physical gatherings, whether in our churches or perhaps in our churchyards. 
As soon as we have definitive information, we’ll let you know. Thank you all for your patience – I hope I’ll have good news for you!

As usual, catch up on our YouTube channel here or download the service transcript here, if you prefer:

With my love and prayers to you all in the meantime,

Vicar
The Cranmer Group
E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk   

Tel: 01949 850523
Mobile: 07946 526569

Sunday Service, 14th March

Dear Cranmer Group Friends, 

This Sunday, I’m delighted to be able to welcome Annie Dickinson, our Lay Reader, who’s preaching to us from chapter 5 of Nehemiah, continuing our Lenten journey through that book. Annie considers how the bread and wine shared between the people of Jerusalem prefigure God’s spiritual food for us in Word and Eucharist, and an encouragement to trust in God’s abundant provision for us all.

The passage also has strong themes of social justice, and of looking after those in the community who’ve been disadvantaged because of the inequitable distribution of basic resources. In these pandemic times, we’re especially conscious of the hardship that some in our wider community are facing, through no fault of their own. It’s been wonderful to see how members of our Cranmer Group family, and others from our six villages, have been pulling together to donate to, and to run, the Cranmer Foodhub, providing food parcels to those who are in real need. Thank you so much to all of you who continue to support this great initiative with your donations, and who volunteer in it, showing God’s love for our community in such a practical way. 

As usual, catch up on our YouTube channel here or download the service transcript here, if you prefer:

May you too know His love for you, this week and always.

God bless,

Vicar
The Cranmer Group
E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk   

Tel: 01949 850523
Mobile: 07946 526569

Services: Ash Wednesday (17th February), and Sundays 21st and 28th February, and 7th March

Dear Cranmer Group Friends, 

I hope that this finds you all well, and hopeful. Whilst spring weather has seemed to come and go at times, we find hope in the turning of the seasons to warmer, drier and sunnier times, and also, of course, in the success of the amazing Covid vaccination programme and decreasing numbers of cases, hospital admissions and deaths from the dreadful virus. But, above all, we find our hope in the certainty we share as Christians in Jesus Christ, crucified and resurrected. 

I recall saying at the end of January that I’d do my best to be much more up-to-date with getting to you the transcripts of our services over the coming weeks. I’m very sorry, I really don’t seem to have done very well with that at all, as we now find ourselves not far off the middle of March… So you have another “bumper pack” of services and sermons from me here:

…or you can of course catch up with them all on our Benefice YouTube page, or in our podcasts.

During Lent, we’re following a preaching series on the Book of Nehemiah, whom God called to rebuild the ruined city of Jerusalem. It has much wisdom for us all as – God willing – we come out of lockdown and begin a “new normal” life, and also as we develop a new vision for our Cranmer Group. Your Benefice Council and a new ‘Ministry Team’ group from all of our parishes are prayerfully developing this with me. We hope that we will see great fruit from it in the months and years to come, with new followers of Jesus in our communities; deepening discipleship amongst all of you, our existing parishioners; and increasing signs of God’s Kingdom throughout our communities, as we serve and minister to our villages.

With my prayers and God’s blessing throughout this Lenten season,

Vicar
The Cranmer Group
E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk   

Tel: 01949 850523
Mobile: 07946 526569

Sunday Service, 14th February

Dear Cranmer Group Friends,

I’m sorry that there’s been a long delay in putting up our recent service transcripts – it seems as though I gave up doing so for Lent. Not really what’s intended in this season… We’re catching back up to date today, and I’ll do my very best to keep up-to-date with things from now on. As usual, catch up on our YouTube channel here or download the service transcript here, if you prefer:

Very best wishes to you all, and God bless,

Rev. Tim Chambers
Vicar

The Cranmer Group
E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk   

Tel: 01949 850523
Mobile: 07946 526569

Sunday Service, 7th February

I’m delighted that an old friend of our parishes, Rev’d Peter Watkins, joined us to preach on our passages from Colossians and John’s Gospel. It was great to have Peter with us, continuing his kind association with the Group from Café Church. Catch up on our YouTube channel here or download the service transcript here, if you prefer:

And a reminder with Ash Wednesday fast approaching that, should you wish to receive any or all of the following:

  • devotional prayers;
  • small quantities of palm cross ash, with which to mark the sign of the cross on your forehead as a sign of penance;
  • the CofE’s daily devotional for Lent, “God’s Story, Our Story”; and
  • an olive wood cross to hold in your hands as you pray,


please contact Jade Blaylock, our Administrator, on 07526 603766.. If you can’t get through to her, do please leave Jade a voicemail message, or email her at thecranmergroup@gmail.com.

Do stay safe – my very best wishes and prayers are with you all, 

Rev. Tim Chambers
Vicar

The Cranmer Group
NEW E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk   

NEW Tel: 01949 850523
Mobile: 07946 526569

February Newsletter

Despite Lockdown, there seems to have been plenty going on in the Group, and we’ll also have new ways in which we can connect with God over the coming days, on Ash Wednesday and throughout the season of Lent. Find out more details in this month’s newsletter (note that where there are links in the Newsletter, please download the PDF version, from where you can click through using the links – the links can’t work in the image on the website, below):

I look forward in particular to journeying through this coming Lent season with you, as we seek the Lord’s presence in our lives.

Many God bless all of you, and all those whom you love, and keep you safe in these tough times,

Rev. Tim Chambers
Vicar

The Cranmer Group
NEW E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk   

NEW Tel: 01949 850523
Mobile: 07946 526569

Sunday Services, 17th, 24th and 31st January

Dear Cranmer Group Friends, 

I hope you’re all doing as well as we can in these continuing difficult times. I’m sorry that there’s been a gap in me posting our online service transcripts – it seems to have been a really busy couple of weeks, and I never managed to get round to completing them, so here you have “three for the price of one”: 

Our Archbishops, Justin and Stephen, have written in an open letter, “As we reach the terrible milestone of 100,000 deaths from COVID-19, we invite everyone in our nation to pause as we reflect on the enormity of this pandemic. 100,000 isn’t just an abstract figure. Each number is a person: someone we loved and someone who loved us. We also believe that each of these people was known to God and cherished by God. We write to you then in consolation, but also in encouragement, and ultimately in the hope of Jesus Christ. The God who comes to us in Jesus knew grief and suffering himself. On the cross, Jesus shares the weight of our sadness. We therefore encourage everyone who is feeling scared, or lost or isolated to cast their fears on God.” 

They have therefore called upon all Christians to join together in prayer, at 6pm each evening during this month of February. I very much encourage you to join with us all in this time of prayer, whether every day, or on whichever days you are able to do so.

It’s also less than a fortnight until the start of Lent, on Ash Wednesday. We will have an online service that morning at 10AM – details are in the February Newsletter (see the blog post relating to that). We’ll also be distributing devotional prayers, and small quantities of ash (made from the burning of palm crosses, as is traditional), with which you can mark the sign of the cross on your forehead, as a sign of penance, and in recognition of our mortality. Please do contact Jade Blaylock, our Administrator, on 07526 603766 and at thecranmergroup@gmail.com, if you would like to receive these, and also a copy of the Church of England’s excellent daily devotional for Lent, “God’s Story, Our Story”. And if you also wish to receive a small olive wood devotional cross to hold in your hands as you pray, please also let Jade know.

Finally, I also strongly recommend the Archbishop of Canterbury’s 2021 Lent Book, “Living His Story” by Hannah Steele, which costs £7.99. There will be an online group reading this together over Lent. Again, details are in the February Newsletter, so do see that blog post.

May you continue to know God’s peace and comfort at this time.
Do keep safe – Clare’s and my very best wishes and prayers are with you all,

Rev. Tim Chambers
Vicar

The Cranmer Group
E-mail: vicar@cranmergroup.org.uk   

Tel: 01949 850523
Mobile: 07946 526569