Dear Friends
Romans 5:  6 – 8
while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7Indeed, rarely will anyone die for a righteous person – though perhaps for a good person someone might actually dare to die. 8But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.
I think the people of Baldock can be justly proud of how they rose to the challenge and showed such great compassion in supporting those who were housebound during lockdown.  The Baldock Corona Support Group, in which the Church was well represented, worked tirelessly and very effectively to provide shopping and prescriptions but much more than this;  a friendly face to those who were isolating, offers of practical support, a very professionally produced almost weekly newsletter, offers of dog walking and much more.  It was gratifying to see the hundreds of people offering themselves as volunteers, far too many to use, and providing hours and hours of time and effort in ensuring that no one was left stranded, either emotionally or physically.
That’s what I call compassion.  The positive side of our God-given human nature coming to the fore. Compassion is an interesting quality.  It’s often very evident in times of disaster but equally often hard to sustain. That’s why It is equally gratifying to see the efforts that are taking place by Corona Support Group to continue this support in helping those made redundant to re-skill and get back to work.  That’s real vision!  That shows commitment and stickability.  It is sadly also true that some charities and appeals are trendier than others, and often this is related to how appealing the object of the fundraising is.  Charities for children usually find it easier to raise money than those for middle aged men!  What makes a difference is when the relationship develops and you get to know some of the personalities who are benefitting.
We are very blessed to know a God who doesn’t seem to get compassion fatigue and who loves and knows middle aged men and children equally!  Perhaps it is because Jesus has come close and allowed the relationship to develop that he is so willing to die for the unrighteous.  That is surely compassion at its peak and proves itself to be at the bedrock of our faith.  For unrighteous is what we all are.  Jesus knows that and was still happy to save us by his death.  (I don’t know about you, but I feel a huge relief when I can acknowledge that I am unrighteous, and not expected to be perfect and squeaky clean.  It was for people such as me, for whom Christ died!)
Of course we cannot ever hope to equal Christ’s compassion for us but we can look upon it as an inspiration to rejoice in and a pattern for us to copy. And if we achieve it just a little bit then we will have shared the bedrock of compassion with a needy world.  Over the next few years, I believe we will be called upon to show compassion more and more as the world comes to terms with the outworking of Corona and the rising threat of climate change.  So get practising.  Which unlovely, unrighteous person are you going to show compassion to today?
A prayer
Spirit of Wisdom,
may we bear your love for humanity
by bringing good news to the poor.

Acting according to your will,
we will come to know your reign,
where all will be seated at your heavenly banquet.

Let us bring food to the hungry,
healing to the violated,
and presence to the lonely.

Teach us to shines like the stars
in our relationship with God,
with our neighbor,
and with all of creation.

Lead us in promoting peace and integrity
through our everyday challenges.
May your comforting embrace bring us compassion for others.

William Purcell ’86, ’92 M.Div.
Center for Social Concerns

l hope you will enjoy Stainer’s ‘God so loved the world’
If you would like to join us for Evening Prayer today (Monday) it is at 5.00pm

The link is:
Topic: Zoom Evening prayer on Tuesday
Time: Jul 21, 2020 05:00 PM London
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 868 9273 7408
Passcode: 251141
The times for Evening Prayer on Zoom for the rest of the week are as follows:
Wednesday 5.00pm (and please note Communion in church at 9.30am even though it is not on the pew sheet)
Thursday 4.30pm
Friday 5.00pm
Saturday 5.00pm
Sunday worship:   Parish Communion at 9am in church, Zoom Worship at 10.30am and  Sunday Evening Prayer is at 6pm on Zoom
We hold Morning Prayer and some Evening Prayer in church nearly every day (see the pew leaflet for details).  You are welcome to join us.
Every blessing