The House that John Built

John, beloved disciples of the Lord:
pray with us.

Fathers and mothers of the Desert,
people of prayer and bringer of wisdom:
pray with us.

Martin, saint of Tours,
builder of communities of hermits,
living simply, loving God;
Martin, soldier of Christ:
pray with us.

Ninian of Whithorn,
apostle and example:
pray with us.

Patrick of Britain,
missionary to the land of Ireland:
pray with us.

Brigid, compulsive giver,
lover of the poor, Brigid of Kildare:
pray with us.

Columba of Iona, exiled from Ireland,
abbot and scribe, lover of Christ;
Columba now the gentle;
Columba of the Church:
pray with us.

Oswald, king and saint,
willing interpreter of the Gospel truth;
Oswald, man of prayer:
pray with us.

Aidan, emissary from Iona;
gentle and straightforward;
torchbearer; liberator of slaves;
Aidan of Lindisfarne:
pray with us.

Hild of Whitby,
firm leader of both men and women;
renowned for your counsel and insight,
releasing others in their giftedness;
Hild, woman of courage and faith:
pray with us.

Cuthbert of Northumbria,
hermit and joyous worshipper;
man of prayer and spiritual warfare;
patient minister of reconciliation;
Cuthbert of the people:
pray with us.

Guidance for the Lenten Season

9th February 2016

This time of year we often face that inconvenient confusion about fasting. By and large we are relieved of it all by a culture that says that it is far better to be positive, take something up, rather than deny ourselves what is good or lovely or essential and, quite frankly, be a bit of a misery.

I wonder if this helps? Imagine you are in need of car and I just happen to have a spare one so offer it to you. You could receive it with joy and use it happily, carefully and gratefully making it known that you are have received this gift from a good and generous person. There is nothing wrong with that at all, in fact it is all as it should be. But now add this into the scenario: you offer the car back to me in generosity, saying that you would love me to be able to use it too; you don’t wish to hang on to it as your own; you recognise that you are entirely entitled to use it as your own for that is how I have given it to but you would love to share it. The car then becomes a means of deepening our relationship.

In life we recognise that all that is, all things, are there by the love and grace of God and we may receive them. We can receive the things we need with joy; we can receive the things that simply give us pleasure with joy. We can use things with care and love, we can cherish all creation. But how about if we relinquish our hold on them and return them in love to God whether they are essential or for pleasure. Of course God does not need them in the way we do, but the act of returning them in this way then makes the thing itself a means of a deepening relationship between us in the same way as that useful car was between us. Then the fast becomes something generous, beautiful and creative. I can begin to understand the joy of the desert fathers and mothers and the Celtic saints when I look at simplicity (the way of living with open hands) and fasting in this light.

May this Lent be a time of great joy and healing.

Penny Warren – UK Guardian, Community of Aidan and Hilda

(Reprinted with permission)

An Evening Prayer

We give you thanks that you led our forbears in the Faith through a cloud by day and a fire by night; we give you thanks, kindly Light, that the torch of faith was brought to this land, and that you ever lead your people on. Light up our dark hearts by the light of your Christ; may his Word illumine our way, for you pour forth loving kindness upon your whole creation, Father, Son and radiant Spirit.

  • May the Light of lights come to my dark heart;
  • May the Spirit’s wisdom come to me from my Saviour.
  • May the peace of the Spirit be mine this night,
  • The peace of the Son be mine this night,
  • The peace of the Father be mine this night,
  • The peace of all peace be mine this night,
  • Each morning and evening of my life.

(From this evening’s prayer

-Timothy Bonney, Prayer Chaplain