Dog on Holiday

2024

24th May

A day early, as I have to go to a wedding tomorrow of a friend and may not have time in the morning. Rather astonishingly, two new churchgoers have arrived to join the congregation. Always very welcome of course 🤔

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I imagine this is part of our drive towards greater diversity in the congregation.. Well we've certainly never turned anyone away... Good job we had suitable chairs for them.

Talking of diversity, Judy kindly sent me some lovely photos of the all the wild flowers now growing in your nature area. I had a quick look myself recently and it really is beginning to look lovely. It's great to be doing something like this.

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Doesn't the church look well in the sunlight.

Last Sunday, we celebrated Pam's birthday at the service and thanked her for all the wonderful cakes that she has made over these years. She had a Sunday off last week and instead Siggy produced a wonderful cake to help everyone celebrate.

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And that wasn't the end of the Sunday celebrations. The members of the ASLSC met together later in the day to watch our beloved team's last game of the season, where we beat Wolves 2-0 and to say goodbye to our manager, who I mentioned in my sermon in the morning. It was all very emotional and he was given a send off in a way that only Liverpool can. We toasted his health, with suitable liquid refreshment, and in his honour, ate the world famous Klopp Dogs.

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Sunday was quite a day.

Stay well and safe everyone.

18th May

I wonder how many of you were lucky enough to see the Aurora, the Northern Lights, last weekend 🤔 They certainly put on a wonderful show and apparently are likely to do so again over the next fortnight if we get clear skies.

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Taken in Biggleswade last weekend. Just amazing. Other than that, I haven't really got much to say this week. I've heard little from church so I assume that all is quiet and on an even keel. However there were two birthdays celebrated last Sunday. Here are the Birthday Boy and Girl.

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Many Happy Returns to Siggy and Judy. Our photographer skilfully managed to get a finger across part of the lens. We've all done that. Sigh. Most strange, although why I am surprised I cannot imagine, is the following photo.

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Apparently he'd managed to get crumbs all over the floor. I am told that it took him nearly twenty minutes to work out how to turn the vacuum on 🤣 In the usual helpful All Saints way, nobody rushed to his aid and just stood around laughing instead. Well done Brian. I hope your team gets off to a better start to their labours tomorrow than you managed!

Stay well and safe everyone.

11th May

My apologies for the lack of an update last week. There were issues 🙄 All back in working order now it seems, thankfully. I suspect the problems started when I realised that a Giant White Rabbit was peering round a bush at the end of my road and watching me.

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Very disconcerting when you are not expecting it. Anyone who remembers the old film "Harvey" will know that Pookies are very real. I have a very strange life. Far more normal and taking me back to the days of my youth is this week's Random Cathedral Picture, which this time comes from Alison.

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This magnificent building is York Minister. York, which was my home town many moons ago, is where Alison and some of her family are having a mini break. Doesn't it look wonderful. Equally magnificent is the fact that it was May's 96th Birthday on Thursday. Many congratulations to her and I'm sure that we all join together to send her our very best Birthday Wishes. No doubt she can hear us all singing form afar.

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Judy and Russ went round to see her and took her a cake on our behalf. Many happy returns May 😊

A bit more from Judy, who kindly shared this photo with me.

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Many of you will remember Judy's Pilgrimage Walk in the North East, which she undertook in the Autumn of last year. This raised the astonishing sum of £3000, part of which Judy donated to the Primrose Unit at Bedford Hospital. Here is the presentation of the cheque. Such a wonderful thing. This touched me deeply as, when I had cancer, the care I received there was truly extraordinary. There are so many people who could say the same, perhaps even some of those reading this.

The Chateau has been it's usual oasis of holiness, prayer and calm this week, with little to report, so I'll leave it there.

Stay well and safe everyone.

27th April

Siggy kindly came round and helped me with some stuff in the garden, here at the Chateau, during the week. So grateful to him. I am not to be trusted with power tools as I and others know through bitter experience, so I contented myself with the dangerous use of a trowel, while he attacked the hedge with great gusto. This is an ongoing project and I'll post some more photos when we get a bit further down the road.

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On a similar theme I was really pleased to see last week that the Nature Area in the Churchyard is beginning to show some real promise, with things growing 😊 A bit tricky to see from this photo but you get the general idea. Well worth popping round to the back of the church to take a look.

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Football has just been a total misery this week, so we'll pass over that quickly, or I'll start sobbing again. Sigh. 😢 Apart from getting my hair cut I have nothing else really to tell. I understand that the APCM went well and I am very pleased for that. However I do have a Random Cathedral picture for you, sent to me by Lindsay, who visited Hereford Cathedral on her way back from Wales last weekend.

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Never been there myself, but it does look rather lovely and well worth a visit. If anyone else visits a Cathedral on their travels, that we haven't seen so far and could send me a photo, I would be very grateful.

Stay well and safe everyone.

20th April

Last weekend I took the opportunity to to go and spend the weekend in Durham. For me, this is where it all began on 3rd July 1983. I was ordained Deacon here at Durham Cathedral by the Bishop of Durham who announced to us on the morning of the ordination, that he would be leaving the diocese (nothing to do with me arriving, before you start to jump to conclusions), because he had just been appointed to become the next Archbishop of York.

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It felt wonderful to be back here after more than 30 years in this quite beautiful Cathedral; so treat this as the latest in the Random Pictures of a Cathedral series.

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I went to the Sung Eucharist on the Sunday morning and this brought back so many happy memories for me. Apart from the gale force and biting wind, which lasted all weekend, I had a great time, but was very sorry to miss the Spring Lunch. From all I've heard, this went wonderfully well. I don't have any figures to publish, but I'm sure these will materialise soon. Judy kindly sent me a copy of the presentation, which I believe Lindsay played on her iPad for you all. Here is a shot of the new Computer Lab at Lemlem School, which All Saints has helped to fund.

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Work was still going on to get it finished in time for the Inspectors to see it, as they were due the next day. The usual All Saints party atmosphere was no doubt in full swing for the Spring Lunch. Here are some of the revellers. As part of the presentation there was a lovely message from Eldana: "Thank you to All Saints Church. Tell them that we love them and pray for them."

A wonderful weekend for all of us.

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Stay well and safe everyone.

11th April

Yes you did read the date correctly. It feels so weird to be updating the website on a Thursday morning, but, as I mentioned last week, I am away this weekend. I asked the two Churchwardens if there was anything that they would like me to include this morning. This was a mistake. The most important news they decided that should be included this week was that they were both getting their nails done this morning after the Fellowship Service. Sigh. 😖 Next in line was that Jill braved the Shard yesterday, fortified by gin and wine, and this for the second time. The first bit of sense I managed to get from them was from Lindsay (surprisingly) who thought it important to mention that Liverpool play tonight. Finally they gave me a few bits of parish news. So here they are.

The PCC has been busy with preparations for the APCM. The Nature Area is beginning to bloom now we've had a bit of Spring weather. There is a Benefice Churchwardens Meeting upcoming, to finalise the arrangements for the Licensing Service. They then finally remembered that this Sunday sees the Spring Lunch in aid of Lemlem School. All the details of this can be found on the poster on the Latest News page, so please do take a look if you haven't memorised them already. Should be a wonderful event and I'm really sorry not to be able to support it in person.

As for me, I've largely had a medical week with opticians stuff and desperate attempts to track down my prescription drugs. My previous dealer was so much more reliable. I will leave you with a few bird photos that I took recently.

At Priory Park I came across this young Egyptian Goose.

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Seems to me to be very well grown for this early in the Spring. As he / she was on their own I also wondered what had happened to the rest of the brood. Here is a proud parent watching carefully.

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Yesterday, as those of us who like birds often do, I found myself standing in the middle of a field in the pouring rain watching a very jittery flock oof 10 Waxwings. The light was so awful that it bleached out all of their gorgeous colours, but you get the general idea.

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They should be heading home any day and it could easily be another decade before we see so many again as we have had this winter. I should also mention that they were here in Biggleswade near the play area on Baden Powell Way. Sometimes you don't need to go far...

Stay well and safe everyone.

6th April

It was so lovely to be with you last Sunday as we celebrated the Resurrection of the Lord. I really enjoyed the service and felt right back at home when the microphones failed, the top came off the gel bottle and I mysteriously managed to count the number of communicants completely wrongly. Just like old times. I'm sure you would wish to join with me in thanking Pam for the gorgeous cakes and the Flower Guild for making the church look so lovely again. As we decorated the cross outside at the end of the service, I thought this might be the best it has ever looked. Clearly my Forget-Me-Nots made a huge difference 🤣

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On Holy Saturday afternoon, here at the Chateau, I had my first butterfly in the garden of the year.

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Somehow seeing this Comma on such a day felt very resurrection-like, as though the whole world of nature (despite the weather) was surging in to new life. My thanks, by the way, to Linda for very ably standing in for Andy as assistant parish photographer on the day. This one is very Caldecote style I thought; showing Pam's amazing cake but from a less than optimal angle.

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After all the joy of Sunday, Lindsay brought me down to earth on Monday morning by sending me a message asking me to phone her as she couldn't find her phone. Double sigh. She often takes advantage of my holy simplicity and I fell for it completely, ringing her to be greeted by howls of laughter. Life can be so unfair.

I will sign off today by reminding you of the Lemlem Lunch that is taking place a week tomorrow and should be very good indeed. As I said last week unfortunately I will not be able to join you as I am away next weekend, but I will be there in spirit. As I am away, there will not be any updates to the website next Saturday, but I will do my best to put something up next week, probably on Thursday before I go, but I won't promise.

Stay well and safe everyone.