Spring is in the air. Snowdrops and other early flowering plants are sprouting. So much beauty around, after the barrenness of winter.
The cold weather is still with us, however, along with hazardous driving conditions when the roads are covered in ice in the early mornings. A few weeks ago, I eventually had to give up trying to get to Cranwich Church for choir practice on a Saturday morning, as a whole section of road was cordoned off by police because there had been a bad road accident.
We have been through two serious storms – Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis, accompanied by flooding, damage to property and dangerous road conditions. On one occasion, I saw a car in a ditch on its side, just outside Foulden.
The church season of Lent began on the 24th February. Lent is a time of reflection, when we prepare ourselves for the great celebration of Jesus’ resurrection at Easter. It is a time of discipline when we take on an extra commitment, such as attending a Lent discussion group. Lent is a six week period, which originated in the early centuries of the church as a time when adult converts were prepared for baptism. They would be baptized at Easter, during an all-night vigil. Before this, they had undergone a special course of instruction and preparation which lasted six weeks and this is the background to the tradition of Lent.
During Lent, there will be special soup lunches at Mundford bowls club on Saturdays, from 12 noon and at the Rectory, Elm Place, Gooderstone on Wednesdays, from 4th March, also from 12 noon. All are welcome to join these occasions of fellowship, sharing and discussion.
On the 21st March, the 75th anniversary of the Lancaster bomber crash in the forest will be commemorated at 1.00 pm. A service will be led at the site by Archdeacon Ian Bentley and representatives of the air force. This will be followed by a tea in the Mundford bowls club. Please join us as we remember this important event in local history.
Another special occasion is coming up at the end of the month – the Village Voices are celebrating five years of singing together, with a concert at Cranwich Church on Saturday, 28th March at 2.30pm All are, of course, most welcome.
Hoping for better weather, and generally better conditions in the coming months.
Rev Linda Lubbe
Associate priest in the Mundford, Hilborough and Oxborough groups of churches.