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Rev Adam Pawley

The Rector Writes,

Queen Elizabeth II
-Is the longest reigning monarch in British history
-Has made 97 state visits all over the world
-Has owned more than 30 corgis (!) – and those she still has she feeds herself!
-Is Supreme Governor of The Church of England – and she attends church every week
-Has met weekly with 12 prime ministers – from Churchill to Cameron
-She tweets!
-Now aged 90, she continues to work a 40-50 hour week.

In April, HM The Queen turned 90 years of age and she is still going strong – if we ever bemoan the increased age of retirement – we can’t go to the Queen for support! Plus did you see hers and Prince Harry’s online response to Barack and Michelle Obama’s challenge in the Invictus Games?!

In her first Christmas broadcast in 1952, Queen Elizabeth II asked the people of the Commonwealth and Empire to pray for her as she prepared for her Coronation as Queen. In light of this request for prayer – in the new picture book produced by The Bible Society that celebrates her Christian faith, “The Servant Queen and the King She Serves” – Queen Elizabeth II reflects, “As I enter my 91st year, I remain eternally grateful for those prayers, and to God for his steadfast love. I have seen his faithfulness to me, as I have sought to serve”.

For the Queen, her life as our monarch, has been about love and service: The love of God and her service to Him and humankind. This month hosts the Queen’s Official 90th Birthday Celebration. The UK will celebrate the Queen: her life, her good character and her faithful service and those of us who are Christians will celebrate too – her driving force for life – her Christian faith.

On Friday 10th June at 11am, St Paul’s Cathedral is hosting a Service of Celebration and Thanksgiving for the Celebration of HM The Queen’s Official 90th Birthday. On the Saturday will be the annual Trooping of the Colour.

On the Sunday in the Mall is the Patron’s Lunch – a lunch which the UK is being encouraged to join in nationally too – to bring communities together and raise monies for charities of which the Queen is patron.

We’re going to join in! Full details can be found inside on page # of the magazine. Not least in Hope I’m delighted to announce that the ‘Queens’ will be coming along too (!) I say ‘Queens’ because David Pickering has very kindly offered to display ten of his ‘Queen Giants’ in the church grounds as part of Cherishing Churchyards Week – 4th-12th June.

On Saturday 11th, at 2pm our Activity Afternoon will have a Royal theme (with cream teas served) and on Sunday 12th we will host an abridged version of the St Paul’s Service followed by a Bring and Share lunch – in the church grounds or church hall as you (and the weather) please – come and join the Queens!

During Lent a number of us joined with others across the local CYTUN (churches together) to study the scriptures together in the form of a York Course. It was very well attended so we have decided to do this again in June and July. New people are welcome to join in too. See page # for more information. We will be thinking about, “Can we build a better world?”

The Somme. The 30th June/1st July marks the 100th Anniversary of the beginning of the Battle of the Somme. This is the second of the three major dates of the 100th anniversary of WWI that the UK is marking in its national commemorations (4th August 2014, 1st July 2016, 11th November 2018).

On Sunday 26th June at 6pm the Evening service will build on this theme of “Can we build a better world?”, as we host a more quiet reflective Service of Holy Communion during which we will give thanks for and remember all those who gave their lives for their country in this devastating war effort. You are invited to join us, whether you receive communion or not.

Finally, I think you expect me to congratulate Leicester City on winning the Premier League. Wow. What a brilliant year for football. Personally speaking, I haven’t really grasped the catholic tradition of praying to the saints – I tend to think… “Why pray to the saints when you can pray directly to Jesus?” But I confess I have been taken by the news story about Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri – himself being a devout catholic – making prayers to a favourite saint – St Rita – The Patron Saint of Impossible Causes!

In Christ, Adam.

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