'New Beginnings' Service with Angela Bufton and Peter Bruce 3.1.2021

(Links to external sources underlined/blue)

Music to Open – relaxing piano music

Angela: Welcome

Chalice lighting.. Let us now light the chalice

As we enter this New Year with new beginnings

May we give to the winds our fears

May we give to the world our faith

May the light of this chalice shine out brightening the dark places of the world.

Opening words

We open ourselves to worship today

May the peace of this house bring us calm

May the joy of tis hour make our hearts glad

May the challenge of this hour awaken our courage

May the communion of this hour confirm our togetherness.

1st Hymn: Wake now my senses. P181 Lyrics by Thomas Mickelson from Traditional Irish Hymn ‘Be Thou my Vision’.

Reading 1 Angela - New Beginnings Proverb by A


by Thomas D. Craig - from Author of A Cup of Buddha

2nd Hymn: Enter rejoice and come in Purple 33 by Louise Ruspini

Reading 2: Liz

In Memoriam [Ring out, Wild Bells]

Alfred Lord Tennyson - 1809-1892

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind
For those that here we see no more;
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes
But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease;
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.

Ring in the valiant man and free,
The larger heart, the kindlier hand;
Ring out the darkness of the land,
Ring in the Christ that is to be.

Candles of Joy and Concern:

Meditation prayer followed by time of quiet reflection and gentle music.

Meditation 1 by Yvonne Aburrow

I invite you to close your eyes and think of a time that you tried something new. Maybe the first time you rode a bike, or your first kiss, or the first time you tried a type of food that you were convinced you didn't like. Maybe it was the first time you tried a new spiritual practice: meditation, or visualisation, or prayer, or elaborate ritual. Maybe it was when you did something scary, like capsizing a canoe or doing a parachute jump.

Try to remember how it felt before you did it. Were you scared, resisting, apprehensive, hesitant? Was there someone there to help you get over your fear? What did they do? Were they supportive and kind, or did they push you into it - being "cruel to be kind"?

Try to remember how it felt while you were doing it. When did fear change to pleasure? If it did. What kind of pleasure was it? Quiet satisfaction or wild exhilaration?

Now try to remember how it felt afterwards. Did you want to do it again? Did it make you more willing to try new things? Did it change how you felt about yourself? [pause]

Hold the memory of these feelings in your mind. When you are ready, open your eyes and return to the present and your companions here.

Meditation Music

We are now going to have a reading from Trevor/Rosemary

New Every Morning by Susan Coolidge

Every morn is the world made new.
You who are weary of sorrow and sinning,
Here is a beautiful hope for you,—
A hope for me and a hope for you.

All the past things are past and over;
The tasks are done and the tears are shed.
Yesterday’s errors let yesterday cover;
Yesterday’s wounds, which smarted and bled,
Are healed with the healing which night has shed.

Yesterday now is a part of forever,
Bound up in a sheaf, which God holds tight,
With glad days, and sad days, and bad days, which never
Shall visit us more with their bloom and their blight,
Their fulness of sunshine or sorrowful night.

Let them go, since we cannot re-live them,
Cannot undo and cannot atone;
God in his mercy receive, forgive them!
Only the new days are our own;
To-day is ours, and to-day alone.

Here are the skies all burnished brightly,
Here is the spent earth all re-born,
Here are the tired limbs springing lightly
To face the sun and to share with the morn
In the chrism of dew and the cool of dawn.

Every day is a fresh beginning;
Listen, my soul, to the glad refrain,
And, spite of old sorrow and older sinning,
And puzzles forecasted and possible pain,
Take heart with the day, and begin again

3rd Hymn: Praise this day with joy and gladness by Karl Stewart

( to the tune of praise my soul the king of heaven )

Reading 3: Liz

Gate of the Year - By Louise Haskins

And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:
“Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”

And he replied:
“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”

So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.
And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.

So heart be still:
What need our little life
Our human life to know,
If God hath comprehension?
In all the dizzy strife
Of things both high and low,
God hideth His intention.

God knows. His will
Is best. The stretch of years
Which wind ahead, so dim
To our imperfect vision,
Are clear to God. Our fears
Are premature; In Him,
All time hath full provision.

Then rest: until
God moves to lift the veil
From our impatient eyes,
When, as the sweeter features
Of Life’s stern face we hail,
Fair beyond all surmise
God’s thought around His creatures
Our mind shall fill.[3]

Address -Angela

Over the Christmas break, I read the book Bird Song by Sebastian Faulks - a realistic novel that details the horrors of the First World War. It made me think of my Dad and how in the war, he lay in a hospital bed for 10 months with scarlet fever. He had to cope with being over 100 miles away from home, when only 17 years old, and not allowed to have any visitors. It made me put into perspective the difficulties that we have all faced during the pandemic of 2020, in comparison to what people of the world went through in both World wars. Having visited the battlefields with my school back in 2015, I found it interesting to find all the places from the book on the map and relate these to those places I’d personally visited.

With maps in mind I read a column by Sam Wells, Vicar of St Martin-in the Fields, in yesterday’s Times. He wrote about the Christmas story, and talked about the 3 locations highlighted in the story. Bethlehem a place of danger since Herod had killed all the new-born male babies. Egypt, from where Joseph and Mary escaped, after Joseph’s dream. Then finally, Nazareth where Joseph had to go back to for the census and which formed a place of nurture for the new baby. These 3 locations form a triangle which the article considers as points of danger, escape and nurture. It then asked why people come to worship…

Is God with you in danger or does he lead you into danger. Is faith largely about escape – of retreat into a spiritual world, where earthly pressures are less depressing and overwhelming. Or is God for you mainly about nurture and growth and understanding.

Sam Well’s concluded that his job is to craft a whole community that lives within this triangle, sharing one another’s dangers, oases and learnings and helping each other to meet God in each one.

I think this idea of having a map of life, that we all need to navigate, is really important, and fits well with the climate we all face today. We’re all subject to the dangers from Covid and not being able to be close to friends and family for support, But we can all remember and share the good and uplifting aspects of our lives, so that we can help and teach each other to be content and happy with what we have.

As we start the New Year, we should all reflect on what we’ve learnt, and ensure we make a positive start and especially help those who have been through some very difficult times with loss of loved ones.

The final piece of music you are going to hear is what my Dad chose for his funeral back in October – I think he chose it because he liked Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds. However, for me it is a metaphor for life that even in bad times we can find things to smile about. Whenever I hear it, it makes me smile and think of him with love and affection.

4th hymn: One more step along the world I go (incl.lyrics from P125) by Sidney Carter

Angela : Prayer

Small Moments by Andrew Usher

We have gathered in this Oasis of Peace from many

places, with many thoughts. We pause together now, to allow

ourselves to settle into this place at this time, letting the

cares of the outside world relax their grip. As we take the time

to reflect on our presence here, let us give thanks for all the

small moments which make our lives so special. May we recognise

in those small moments that divine grace which is present at all

times if only we would be aware of it.

We acknowledge with regret the moments when we have been less

than we would wish to be: the moments when we have forgotten the

divinity within ourselves and within others: the moments when

life is hard on us, when we cannot face the world, when our

sorrows seem too much to bear.

May we have the strength and the courage to affirm that there is

divinity in these moments too. May our hearts be turned, that we

might see divine grace working wherever we look, and may that

recognition lighten our burdens. And where we still cannot see

that grace, may we be filled with the spirit to bring love,

grace, compassion and hope ourselves to those places where it is needed.

May we find peace and renewal in this place, and may we take that

peace with us, that it may fill the world.


Inspired by words of Bruce T Marshall

Closing words and blessing; Angela.

May we take with us by Rev Ant Howe

May we take with us some of the joy of this gathering.....

May we go forward with hope.....

May we live rightly, in peace with one another....

And may we know the blessing of God until we gather here again.


Music: A positive song from my childhood sung by Doris Day - Singing in the Rain