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Newington Parish Council

A message from the church 25.03.20

By Mrs Wendy Licence Newington Parish Council

Wednesday, 25 March 2020


Newington Parish Council Contributor



What a week already! Whoever would have expected this just a few days ago.

We live in unprecedented times when many are anxious about the present never mind the future. given the Government announcements in recent days. Now, following the Prime Minister’s announcement on Monday 23rd March 2020, the Church of England’s Archbishops and Bishops have now extended the current suspension of public worship to include closure of all church buildings too. This is because it is important that we STAY AT HOME apart from essential trips.


Your local church community is still here, working with others (other churches, parish and local councils, Foodbank, other volunteers) where we can to serve you, to be available to you and especially for the most vulnerable in our village communities. We would like to encourage generosity in providing support for the Foodbank if possible (see the ‘Spareable’ app on the relevant app stores).


Although the church building in your village will be closed, as a “dispersed praying community” we are praying for your village community each day at the set times below. We invite you to join us to pray, as you can wherever you are at home. We are developing resources to help this (see www.thesix.org.uk):

  • Daily Prayer: Monday to Friday at 12.00 noon & 5.00pm
  • Sunday Worship: 10.30am.
  • Sunday Lighting of a candle: 7.00pm

Although originally just intended for Mothering Sunday, we invite you to continue to light and place a candle (or any light) in the window each Sunday evening as a sign of hope. In doing so please be conscious of fire safety. Let’s see as many lights as possible lighting up windows as the weeks pass.

We are aware that many may be worried and struggling in some way during this period. Do not struggle alone. There are many who can help and listen. Do ask. If you wish for help from our churches, do contact me in the first instance. I can then put you in touch with others in the communities who can and are willing to help.

"The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not (cannot) overcome this light". These words from John’s Gospel remind us of God’s promise that no matter what life brings, the Lord says “I am with you”. In the midst of the storms the Lord Jesus met his panicked disciples and said "It is I, do not be afraid. Where is your faith?" In the midst of this particular storm engulfing our individual lives, our nation and our world at this time may we hear the Lord’s promise “I am with you”.




only in the darkest moments of life

as the storms gather and rage

and everything is shaken,

do we see the light

that has been present all along,

shining brightly.


A prayer for our six villages

Lord Jesus we thank you

for the light of your presence in our midst

for your love which casts out all fear.

We pray that you will carry us through

these stormy uncertain times

praying especially for all those

who are vulnerable in our villages at this time,

praying for all those coming together

from different groups to serve our communities,

for all those working in our healthcare system,

for all those working hard to provide for what we need.

As many feel caught in a dark tunnel of anxiety and fear,

may we each be your lights, helping others find the way through.

In the power of the Spirit and in your name we pray.



Let us hope. Let us love.

Let us be hands & voices of hope.

Let us be hands and voices of love.

In Jesus’ name, in the power of the Spirit.

Peace be with you.



Every blessing


Rev Julian Staniforth

Rector & Priest-in-Charge of The Six benefice

Upchurch with Uplift, Hartlip, Lower Halstow,

Newington, Iwade and Stockbury

t: 01795 227329/e: [email protected]


Contact Information

Mrs Wendy Licence

Find Newington Parish Council

Newington, Sittingbourne, Kent, ME9 7JR