A Message from the Rev’d Amanda Collinson

Posted by Admin on Friday, 23rd May 2014, 11:30

Amanda Collinson

Priest-in-Charge

St John the Baptist Church

Northwood.

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Tel: 01983 294913

Email: revamandacollinson@virginmedia.com

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HELLO THERE!
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In last year’s June Parish Mag. I said that this was a quiet month for the church and as I wrote this year’s letter I pondered if it was a quiet month in general … after a few minutes on the internet I soon found out that it actually is a really significant month for the world as a whole. There are naturally many birthdays with Marilyn Monroe, Jacques Cousteau, Anne Frank, Stan Laurel and Prince William being the most notable ones. Other key things that happened were: the first colour TV broadcast happened in the US in 1953, Charles Duryea patented a gasoline-powered automobile in 1895, the doughnut was invented in 1847, Robert F. Kennedy was shot and mortally wounded while leaving the Hotel Ambassador in Los Angeles in 1968, The Duke of Windsor married Wallis Simpson in 1937 and most notable in my living memory, the massacre of protesters in Tiananmen Square, Beijing in 1989 and the return of Hong Kong to Chinese rule in 1997.
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However what shocked me the most, as an ex-Military Officer, was that so many significant military days happened in June – the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, in 1939 WW1 was initiated with the assassination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand, Crown Prince of Austria and his wife and 5 years later, again in June, the signing of the Treaty of Versailles formally ended the same Great War. And then there was the momentous D-Day Landings in 1944 … the largest amphibious landing in history, involving 1,527,000 soldiers, 4,400 ships and landing craft, and 11,000 aircraft. By the end of the day 150,000 Allied soldiers had landed with 15,000 killed and wounded. There are many commemorative events happening this year for the centenary of WWI and similarly for the 70th Anniversary of this pivotal event in WWII and so there are many reasons to be patriotic in the best sense (and that’s before we start talking about the Football World Cup!) this June!
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The world has seen so much heartache, too much in my eyes, of people suffering in their own countries because of their leaders’ ‘patriotism’ to their country, cause, tribe, religion or state. It seems the world has turned on its head since the two World Wars – no longer does the world work together to right the wrongs: countries only get involved if it is beneficial for them. And our society has also gone that way too – how many of us have turned a blind eye to bad behaviour or poor language we have witnessed or heard, because we just don’t want to get involved. Now I know we have to take our personal safety seriously, but we should at least try and do something.
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The ‘younger’ readers (I’m in denial of turning 40 this month!) of this magazine will know of a pop singer called Heather Small who released a song in 2000 called ‘What have you done today to make you feel proud?’ – its title line is used regularly in the sitcom Miranda by her childhood friend Stevie (complete with a Heather Small mask!) … I am singing the song as I am typing! So I am going to set you all a challenge – try and do something good each day! So if I approach you and sing ‘What have you done today to make you feel proud?’ you would be able to give me a great answer … but don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be something huge, just something that makes a difference to someone – saying hello to the neighbour you have never spoken to, ringing ‘Great Auntie Betty’, who just never stops moaning, to see how she is, buying some flowers for your Mum/wife/daughter, cooking a great unhealthy steak for your Dad/husband/son, smiling at your strict boss … anything to make this world a better place. With so many, many men dying for us over a hundred years ago to give us the freedom to do just this, surely we should honour their memory and do the best we can!
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With every blessing for a proud and life-changing month!
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Rev’d Amanda

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