It was lovely to see so many people at the quiz night supporting the A Rocha charity and having a fun evening on zoom. A huge thank you to Carole for organising, we had some very different rounds with most of them based on nature, the world and its climate. An astounding score or 70.5 points took the Allsopp's well into the lead, especially after winning the Beetle game twice! Thanks again everyone, it was great to see you, Kathleen
The Pioneers would like to thank everyone for their generous support of our Fun Night. Carole would like to thank Kathleen, Freddie, Mike, Susan and Callum and Kirsty for their contributions to the quiz rounds and Susan for keeping score.
The church has had visitors again. Would you believe this – not mice but a badger this time?! (And not to mention the buffaloes in our garden at home a little while ago!).
On 2nd March, Alan, who lives next door to our church, rang me to say “you have a badger trying to get in the back door of the church! Does he belong to you?”
Well, I made a quick phone call to Mike at the Hampshire Wildlife Rescue, who sent David, a badger expert from Fordingbridge, to view the situation. When David arrived, he shone his torch in “Brock’s” direction and the badger made a very quick getaway through the shrubs. David then went to a few houses to alert people in case the badger ended up in their gardens, as David thought the animal may have been hit by a car.
This all happened in about 1½ hours. It was wonderful work from the Hampshire Wildlife Rescue team and we are grateful to them.
Our Fabric group met at the church recently and decided the outside of our church could do with being redecorated. Also, it was decided to have the vestry and toilet facilities redecorated too. The inside walls of the church are quite good, so aside from a bit of DIY painting of a patch on one wall, it was decided to redecorate the rest of the inside of the church sometime in the future.
Although Romsey URC still hope to re-open on 23rd May for Sunday Worship, as we at Braishfield were hoping to as well, but having talked to our minister, the Revd Mike Perrott and Maggie B, our pulpit secretary, we at Braishfield URC think it would be wise for us to wait until after 21st June, when hopefully all restrictions will be lifted. So, we hope to re-open for Sunday Worship on 27th June, for our 203rd Church Anniversary Service at 10am.
We trust that most of redecoration work will be done before the church re-opens.
Of course, there will undoubtedly still be some restrictions in place for a while but hopefully not for too long. When all the restrictions are lifted, we will have a Songs of Praise service to celebrate and who knows what else we will do! We will keep in touch, with more details later.
With best wishes to all of our readers and we hope to be able to see you soon!
CALLING ALL CRAFTERS - CAN YOU HELP PREPARE POPPIES?
Thank you to you ‘crafters’ out there who have offered to help make knitted or crocheted poppies to create a hanging curtain for the Abbey URC church railings for next Remembrance Day. So far there are three of you that have responded by email and through the pastorate Facebook page. We will need quite a lot of people and poppies to achieve a striking poppy curtain – please let Revd Mike know if you would like to be involved and he will put you in touch with each other. Patterns, if required (in association with the Royal British Legion), are available from https://www.deramores.com/collections/poppy-appeal for 50 pence.
THANK YOU FOR JOINING THE 2021 LENT COURSE
Our 2021 Lent Course on Zoom, using the ‘Holy Habits’ Following Jesus resource, went well, with seven regular participants sharing on Zoom and others sharing at home. Some of our reflections during our Sunday services during Lent outlined what we had been doing and reflected upon, helping everyone to join in with what we have been thinking about. It was a good time of sharing in prayer and reflection, and was a good ‘taster’ for other ‘Holy Habits’ resources as we come to use them.
Freddie and Henry send their love and greetings to everyone in church. Pioneers are about to complete the Alpha Youth Series and will move on to revisit some of the Old Testament characters via a combination of short videos (movies, science/archaeological findings and adventure) from YouTube and other sources.
To date, the amount raised for the Pioneers’ Charity 2020 is £929.84. Thank you all for your support.
We are planning an online fundraising event on Zoom on the 20 March 2021, there will be a potpourri of games and quiz rounds, something for everyone. If you would like to provide a quiz round let Carole know. It would be useful to know who is coming so that we can make sure you have everything you need for the evening’s entertainment. Do keep the date open on your diary.
At 6.30pm on the evening of Sunday 28 February we will begin our 2021 Lent Course on Zoom, using the ‘Holy Habits Following Jesus' resource.
This is open to everyone from Braishfield and Abbey URCs – and indeed anyone else who would like to join in! If you would like to take part either on Zoom or at your leisure in your own time, please let Revd Mike know and he will get a booklet to you so you can follow the course. The Zoom link is ID: 864 1780 6994, Password: learning
AN EVENING WITH CAROLINE NOKES
Caroline Nokes, Romsey MP since 2010, joined us for our 4 March Zoom meeting. She was Home Office Minister of State for Immigration for 18 months until July 2019 and continues to have a special interest in immigration; she gave a long and detailed interview about it to the Independent in January, and it was following this that we invited her to join us.
She mainly talked about asylum seekers, who are people arriving in the UK after fleeing their homes because of persecution and who apply to stay; if successful they would be allowed to stay, initially for six months. Despite scaremongering tabloid headlines, the actual number arriving here is less than 40,000 each year – far fewer than most European countries. Once here, they are often housed in poor accommodation and given £37.75 per week to cover their food, clothes, toiletries and other essentials.
UPDATE: About 10 days ago Amnesty International sent news about Nazanin. She was due to be released and her ankle band had been removed. However, the Embassy knew nothing about when to expect her. She has served the full term of her original sentence, but it now appears that her case is being reviewed again, However, she faces a second charge and had to go back to court in Iran on Sunday, 14 March. After a trial lasting 20 minutes, a verdict will be due in the next week. Her daughter is now 5 years old.
Hello all, hope you are keeping well. I just wanted to keep you posted on my farriery! Just before Christmas I went back to Hereford college for my next block of education which was three weeks and went really well. I stayed in my usual accommodation whilst there, which was really nice as they were happy to see I'd kept at my work and was progressing.
I learnt a huge amount at college this block, such as the concussive mechanisms of the limb, the stay apparatus which lets the horse sleep standing up and how the hoof actually grows. I think my favourite part of the block was that we actually got to work with horses this time by taking measurements of the foot, cutting the correct metal and then making the shoe to fit before nailing it on as well!
It was a big step to be doing this at college now but really fun as well as interesting to see how the rest of the group work. I am still greatly enjoying the apprenticeship and love that I'm learning all sorts of practical new things, love to you all.
BALM (BEREAVEMENT AND LOSS MEETING)
HAPPY 10TH ANNIVERSARY!
Balm was started on February 2011 with 3 leaders Stella, Maureen and myself. It was the idea of Stella and Maureen who had been to a Synod meeting and found themselves in a group discussing bereavement and came back to Romsey inspired to start a group.
We had 6 ladies and now have 24 members. Two of those ladies still attend and are a great help to me in welcoming new members. The Church and Terry Hinks were very supportive allowing us to use the lounge and donating a small sum of money to get us started.
We are there for each other and we see ourselves very much as a self-help group. Both Stella and Maureen have moved on and we welcomed Joy, our Methodist friend, who comes loyally every month to preside in the kitchen making sure we are fed and watered! Many of our members have made friends amongst the group and in pre-Covid days met socially as well. Now we try and keep contact on the phone, a much-needed lifeline.
During our March meeting, we looked further at our quarterly theme of equality and the little things we can do to ensure all people who enter are doors feel included. We talked about the merits of registering as a Sight Loss Friendly church and will look further into the opportunities this could provide for us.
However, looking at some of the suggestions offered to make our church more open to those suffering from sight loss or deterioration, there are some very basic pointers for us all to adopt, both in church and in other locations. Here are just a few,
- When greeting a new-comer to our premises, do not presume they can see where you are pointing; offer to take them to the door leading into the toilets, the lounge, a suitable pew (including mentioning the step up before they trip on it!), etc.
- Offer the choice of hymn books available; do not presume a person wants a small print edition because he or she had one last time you were on door duty.
- When printing posters, notices etc, use colours which can be easily read; gold print on blue are thought to be the best colour combination for those with limited reading ability.
If you have any comments you would like to offer about this, or wish to join us in our discussions at our Outreach Meeting on 12 May please do contact me for more details.