3 January 2021
Dear EFP church folk,
A happy and healthy New Year once again. I hope that despite the restrictions and strangeness of this Christmas, you were able to enjoy the celebration and make it special in some way. Most importantly, I hope you and those closest to you are staying well.
Today is Epiphany Sunday, when we draw inspiration from the journeying of the Wise Men. They arrive at the Bethlehem party rather late! But they travel in Hope, and particularly in Faith. At the start of this year, we need signs of Hope; the Covid-19 vaccines offer some hope in a practical sense. But as the Covid era draws out, and with continuing uncertainties and ups and downs ahead, I sense that our need of Faith is especially important. It is from Faith that deep Hope emerges.
Today’s Sunday reflection and January’s Parish Magazine article both follow this theme.
The Sunday video reflection link, slightly later than usual, is at -
I’ve attached January’s Parish magazine article, for those who don’t see the magazine (see Feniton News for this).
Feniton church’s boiler has bowled an extra googly ball over this Christmas and New Year period, by deciding to go on strike during the coldest weather. Many thanks to David and Cara for managing the situation. Thank you too to Babs and other Payhembury and Feniton folk for the flexibility for today’s rearranged service.
Today's Prayer diary from Becky invites valuable prayerful reflection on the transition of an old year to a new.
This is attached, along with Children’s church, with thanks to Becky.
Services scheduled for January - pending boilers and any Covid-related changes, are -
10th: Payhembury - All Age 10.30am
17th: Escot - Communion 10.30am
24th: Feniton - Storytime+ 9am
Payhembury - Communion 10.30am
31st: Feniton - Team Communion 10.30am
Continuing in Tier 3, we continue to advise careful consideration about attending a church service, particularly if you’re in a vulnerable group.
Picture and reflection for the end/beginning of the year:
On New Year’s Eve afternoon, I pedalled gently up to Hembury Fort, to savour the last of the 2020 daylight. A good sunset would be a bonus. What I got instead was far more dramatic. The sky darkened from the northwest, with the approach of a large wintery shower. Hail then snow fell on Hembury Fort. I was caught totally by surprise!
As I stood in the wintry precipitation and stunning light, it felt powerfully symbolic of 2020: just when I thought the year had done all that it would, it throws a final glorious trick! 2020 was a year that did its best to teach me that no plans are certain - but that the surprises can be beautiful and moving. Something to carry into 2021.
Take care, and God bless,
Team Vicar for Escot, Feniton & Payhembury, Otter Vale Team