October 2013

From the Rectory

When the hot spell ended at the end of August and the rains came, you could almost hear the earth sigh in relief as it soaked up the life-giving moisture. That dried up patch of weeds behind the Rectory that we sometimes refer to as a lawn turned green again almost overnight. I was reminded of those words often used in Harvest worship from Psalm 65.

‘You visit the earth and water it, you greatly enrich it; the river of God is full of water………the meadows clothe themselves with flocks: the valleys deck themselves with grain, they shout and sing together for joy.’

Harvest marks the turning of the year. It’s a significant time in the Church: a time when we begin to look back and remember: All Saints’, All Souls’, and Remembrance Sunday. Times to remember and give thanks. We continually look forward to times and events to come but it is healthy and necessary also to reflect on all that is past and remember with thanksgiving people, times and places that have influenced our lives.

October 18th is St. Luke’s Day. St. Luke is famous as one of the four Gospel writers. He was a Greek, and tradition says that in writing his Gospel, he obtained much of his information from the Virgin Mary. Certainly it is just possible that he met her when she was a very old lady: his gospel seems to have been written about the year 70.

Luke is described in one of Paul’s epistles as ‘my dear friend, Luke, the doctor.’ (Colossians 4:14) He travelled with Paul on several of his missionary journeys. One was a sailing from Troas to Samothrace and eventually to Phoenicia, and another from Phoenicia to Jerusalem. Later they went to Rome together. For many years, St. Luke has been regarded as the patron saint of doctors, and many medical organisations, hospitals, and doctors’ groups will be having festivities in his honour around his Saints day. St. Luke’s Day is a good time to pray for doctors, and for all who have a care for the sick. We have all needed professional medical attention at some point in our lives.

We sometimes get a spell of warmer weather around St. Luke’s Day. This is known as ‘St. Luke’s little summer’ and gave us the expression ‘luke-warm’ for something that is neither warm nor cold. So remember the ‘medics’ in your prayers and as a Christian strive to be neither warm nor cold but fervent in the gospel with your heart on fire with God’s love.

Yours for Christ's sake.