“When he bares his teeth,
winter meets its death,
And when he shakes his mane,
we shall have spring again.”

CS Lewis

The recent visits to Weymouth of the ‘Beast from the East’ took us all by surprise.

A pleasant surprise for some – giving rare opportunities for snow ball fights, sledging and extra days off school – and an unwelcome disruption for others. The surprise was not just that it snowed in Weymouth – but that the snow came when it did. We may dream of a White Christmas but we weren’t far off a White Easter this year! Just as we thought we should be enjoying the beginnings of Spring – the temperature dropped, the wind picked up and the cold Siberian weather came. But it is now officially Spring and we can see the beauty of the season around us as flowers begin to grow, blossom appears and temperatures start to slowly rise.

New life comes – even after the hardest winter -and Spring gives us the perfect visual aid for Easter. After the pain and loss of Good Friday and the desolation and disappointment of Holy Saturday – there is the joy and life of Easter Sunday.

God offers us the gift of new life which has been won and guaranteed for us through Christ’s death and resurrection. We receive this new life when we decide to follow Jesus but we can also know the on-going renewal of our lives as we walk closely with Him every day.

We can also pray with confidence that we will continue to see signs of new life in the Church. Archbishop Justin Welby recently said, “the long years of winter in the Church are changing … the ice is thawing; the spring is coming. There is a new spring in the Church.”

Sounds good to me! So let’s continue to look for and pray for signs of renewal in our church and community. Let’s continue to live in the new life we have in Christ and let’s be open to God and the new things He has in store for us.

Church Work party

On a bitterly cold morning in the middle of March, 12 brave souls arrived for the Church Workparty. Snow was forecast for the afternoon and thankfully we were all back home when it arrived.

8 of us were working outside; pruning and clearing last year’s vegetation, clearing drains, picking up rubbish, neatening the edges of the path and filling the car park holes with gravel. Meanwhile 4 were inside the church; renewing a display and tidying and sorting books. We were keen to gather inside to chat together whilst we had coffee and cakes.

Many, many thanks to those who helped.

News from St John’s School

Hello from all of us at St John’s School. It has, as usual, been an action packed term and we still have lots to look forward to before the Easter holiday.

It was wonderful yet again to welcome The Saltmine Theatre Company and Spring into Life Team to school in February. The children really enjoyed their visit.

This week the children will be participating in a range of activities to learn and express their thoughts, feelings and ideas about The Easter Story. We have 2 local artists (Paul White and John Horrell) who will be coming into school to work with Reception and Year 4. Springs Dance Company will also be visiting and working with Year 3 and 6. Year 5 will be composing and performing Easter music and Years 1 and 2 will be creating Easter Gardens. We will be turning the hall into a gallery of Easter Art and hope to also share some of our creativity as part of our KS2 Easter Service at St John’s Church. Reception, Year 1 and 2 will also visit the Church to take part in ‘The Easter Experience’.

As a school, it is so important that we make time and space to allow children to be creative and express themselves spiritually and artistically. We have some amazingly talented children at the school and I am looking forward to celebrating Easter at St John’s through dance, art and music.

Thank you so much to all at St John’s Church who continue to give their time and energy, always ensuring we are warmly welcomed and looked after when we come to visit.

On behalf of the school I would like to wish you a very Happy Easter. Thank you for your ongoing prayers and support of the school.

Ladies versus Men’s Skittles Match

The Ladies versus Men’s Skittles Match took place in March. 28 people took part in this annual challenge. There was a good atmosphere, lots of chatter and jovial banter.

There were 4 rounds. The final score was Men 160 and Ladies 128.

Then there was ‘Killer’. Just one skittle was standing and each player had to knock down the skittle or be eliminated. 2 men and 2 ladies completed in the semi-final. In the final John Yallop and Anne Foxall competed against each other. Anne was the victor! (Anne is 2nd on the right)

All action stopped during the evening when we enjoyed a delicious meal with more chatter. Many thanks to Margaret and Dave Moore for arranging the evening.