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Transforming Obedience in Water and Wine

Updated: Feb 19, 2022

Dear All Saints and St Marys This weekend we celebrate the third Sunday of Epiphany. It is a season in the church which invites us to understand a little more about God revealed in the person of Jesus Christ. It is also an invitation to continue with the celebrations that come with Christmas. In the Northern Hemisphere it feels as if the light and festivities of Epiphany are an important time of year when the natural light of the day is still short and the dark nights continue to close in quickly. It is at a celebration that we find Jesus in our gospel reading this week. He is invited to a wedding in Cana in Galilee and it is here that he transforms water into wine. It is the word transformation which grabs me. As a diocese we are continuing to think and pray and explore what Transforming Church Together is. As a church we are linked to the charity Transforming Lives for Good. There is something about transformation that is important. It suggests something more than change. It has a more positive ringtone that that. Change can be for good or ill. Whereas transformation suggests a calling to something different at least and normally something better. Certainly we all need water – but it is good also to sometimes taste wine and know that the Lord is good! In that passage of John Chapter 2 this week there is a small but important reference to obedience. “Do as he tells you” Mary, Jesus’ Mother, says to the stewards at the party. They do. Mary knew a little about obedience. It was her words “Let it be according to your word” that brought about the transformation of the world through her Son Jesus Christ. It is now the stewards obedience that brings about the transformation of water into wine that now reveals who Jesus is. Obedience that leads to transformation in the simple gifts of both water and wine. If for no other reason, then this for me is one why Epiphany holds such an important place in my heart and spiritual deepening. Services this weekend SUNDAY 16th JANUARY 2022 10.00am – St Marys – Creative Church

We will be making light lanterns - Revd Lizzie 10.30am – All Saints – Holy Communion with Hymns. Bishop Lee of Swindon will be preaching and celebrating. Revd Janey will be leading. 6.30pm – St Marys – Epiphany Carols - A beautiful musical service with Epiphany music, readings and carols. During the week there are two other times that we can gather to worship together. Firstly at Celtic Morning Prayer at All Saints on Wednesday morning at 9am and Holy Communion at St Marys on Thursday at 10am. Next Sunday, alongside our two communion services in the benefice we have Café Church at All Saints at 10.30 where we will be finishing looking at the Book “How to Pray”. Please find below roots materials and activities as well as a creative church poster and a word document giving some details about Living in Love and Faith that was in the December Benefice Magazine. I wanted to finish by sharing with you a poem, a sonnet written by Malcolm Guite in “Sounding the Seasons”

The Miracle at Cana Here’s an epiphany to have and hold, A truth that you can taste upon the tongue, No distant shrines and canopies of gold, Or ladders to be clambered rung by rung, Bur here and now, amidst your daily living, Where you can taste and touch and feel and see, The spring of love, the fount of all forgiving, Flows when you need it, rich, abundant, free. Better than some waters of some outward weeping, That leave you still with all your hidden sin, Here is vintage richer for the keeping That works its transformation from within. “What price” you ask me, as we raise the glass, “It cost our Saviour everything he has.”

Blessings Lizzie Revd Lizzie Kesteven Vicar of All Saints Church and St Marys Church, Fishponds Interim Co Area Dean of Bristol City Deanery Advisor for Spirituality and Spiritual Direction for Bristol Diocese

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16th January 2022 Email Notice Sheet
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St Marys Noitce Sheet 16th January 2022
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