Third Sunday of Lent 24th March 2019

The Watlington Benefice

Third Sunday of Lent

24th March 2019


Our Hymns today (NEH)

64 Be thou my guardian and my guide          95 When I survey the wondrous cross          353 Dear Lord & Father of mankind              391 King of Glory King of Peace


Eternal God,

give us insight

discern your will for us,

give up what harms us,

and to seek the perfection we are promised

in Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.


Our readings today

A reading from the book of the prophet Isaiah

Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters;
and you that have no money, come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. 
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labour for that which does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food. 
Incline your ear, and come to me; listen, so that you may live.
I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David. 
See, I made him a witness to the peoples, a leader and commander for the peoples. 
See, you shall call nations that you do not know, and nations that do not know you shall run to you, because of the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has glorified you. 

Seek the Lord while he may be found, call upon him while he is near; 
let the wicked forsake their way, and the unrighteous their thoughts; let them return to the Lord, that he may have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. 
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord. 
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your.                    Isaiah 55. 1-9

A reading from Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians

I do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them, and they were struck down in the wilderness.

 Now these things occurred as examples for us, so that we might not desire evil as they did. Do not become idolaters as some of them did; as it is written, ‘The people sat down to eat and drink, and they rose up to play.’ We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day. We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did, and were destroyed by serpents. And do not complain as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer. These things happened to them to serve as an example, and they were written down to instruct us, on whom the ends of the ages have come. So if you think you are standing, watch out that you do not fall. No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.

1 Corinthians 10.1-13

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke

At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, ‘Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them—do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.’

 Then he told this parable: ‘A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, “See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?” He replied, “Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig round it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.” ’                                   Luke 13. 1-9

Please include in your prayers              Those in our prayer basket, those who are ill or housebound: Rebecca, Tony Marie, Philippa Jamieson, Mick Collins, Dilys Garland, David Colby, Margaret Gardner, Samantha Clark, Lynne Watton, Frederick Ali, Josie, Ted Smith, Shaun Caley, Roger, Philip, Carole, Ursula Britts, Debra, John, Christine, Tony Porter, Jessica Clark, Agnes Steed, Kath, Sam

Lent 2019 Your Call: following the Way of Life this Lent  \”Your Call  "

Your Call is a spiritual journey to make in Lent, exploring in a group together how each of us responds to Jesus’s call to follow him.     Lent Group at 32 Fen Road Watlington              Exploring + Soup Lunch on Wednesdays 27th March and April 3rd, starting at 11am


March and April Services

* Sunday 31st March Mothering Sunday 11am Watlington Reverend Dr. David our priest in charge

*Thursday 4th April 10am Runcton Holme Reverend Dr. David our priest in charge

*Sunday 7th April 11am Wormegay Reverend Dr. David our priest in charge

*Sunday 14th April 11am Palm Sunday Runcton Holme Canon Stephen Leeke

*Thursday 18th April Maundy Thursday 7pm Tottenhill Canon Derek Brown                     *Good Friday 19th April 2.30pm Wormegay Lay led                                                       *Easter Sunday 21st April 11am Watlington Canon William Burke


The Real Easter Egg (with Easter booklet) Milk Chocolate and Dark Chocolate available £3.60 – orders taken Barbara Church 01553 810584

Joyce Venni recently found a copy of the Church newsletter from May 1970 the Reverend Kenneth Brown was Rector of Five Parishes: Watlington, Runcton Holme, South Runcton, Wallington and Thorpland with three churches: St Peter and St.Paul, St. Andrew and St. James. How things change but part of the article is very apt for today. Written in May, Rogation Days are mentioned.

‘The Rogation Days are traditionally the days we pray for God’s Blessing on our lands and all work thereon. The observance is of great antiquity. As we have learnt more and more about intensive agriculture, as we have brought the use of Chemical science into fertilisers and selective sprays; and as the increasing use of mechanisation has made us less and less dependent upon the vagaries of the weather, there may have been those who think that the Rogation Days form just another example of those quaint survivals which litter our Church Kalendar (sic) but which need not be taken too seriously today.

I suggest that this is a very shallow point of view to take. To many people today it seems as if we do not always know where we are going. By our various devices we are in grave danger of upsetting the balance of Nature with results that could only be disastrous. There is a branch of Science, known as Ecology which makes a study of the careful way in which plant and animal life is linked together on this planet, and estimates what happens when that balance is upset by man or by other means. The results make alarming reading.

Archaeologists dig up the ruins of great cities in the middle of deserts. Obviously, these once great centres of power were built in fertile land. The desert has encroached. It is not that the earth is getting drier but because man by his folly has changed land which was once fertile into first a dust bowl and then a desert. Wholesale cutting down of trees, and unwise grazing has caused much of the spread of desert in Africa. Even in this country we sometimes get our ‘Fen Blows’.

In our country as in other parts of the world pollution is now, at last being recognised as a menace. If this is unchecked we might at the last, starve in the midst of a planet which could have produced plenty. This has been declared Nature Conservancy Year and indeed it is time that we ceased to take the bounty of our planet for granted.’

To contribute to this newssheet, contact Barbara Church 01553 810584, If you would like to receive an electronic copy of the newssheet please e-mail

Service sheets (weekly)
Webpage icon Easter Sunday 21st April 2019
Webpage icon Palm Sunday 14th April 2019
Webpage icon Fifth Sunday of Lent Passion Sunday 7th April 2019
Webpage icon First Sunday of Lent 10th March 2019; Second Sunday of Lent St Patrick 17th Mar
Webpage icon Second Sunday before Lent Creation Sunday 24th February 2019
Webpage icon 3rd Sunday before Lent 17th February 2019
Webpage icon Epiphany 4 27th January 2019
Webpage icon The Epiphany 6th January 2019 and Epiphany 3 20th January 2019
Webpage icon First Sunday of Christmas 30th December 2018
Webpage icon The Fourth Sunday of Advent 23rd December 2018
Webpage icon The Third Sunday of Advent 16th December 2018
Webpage icon First Sunday of Advent 2nd December 2018
Webpage icon 2nd Sunday Before Advent 18th November 2018
Webpage icon Order of Service for Remembrance Sunday
Webpage icon Remembrance Sunday 11th November 2018
Webpage icon Last Sunday after Trinity Bible Sunday 28thth October 2018
Webpage icon 20th Sunday after Trinity 14th October 2018
Webpage icon 18th Sunday after Trinity, 30th September 2018
Webpage icon 17th Sunday after Trinity 23rd September 2018
Webpage icon 9th September 2018, 15th Sunday after Trinity
Webpage icon 14th Sunday after Trinity 2ndSeptember 2018
Webpage icon 13th Sunday after Trinity 26th August 2018
Webpage icon 9th Sunday after Trinity Patronal Service St. James Runcton Holme 29th July 20
Webpage icon 8th Sunday after Trinity 22nd July 2018
Webpage icon 8th July