12th December

St Philips News for the Parish

12 December 2020


Sunday 13 December 2020 there will be a said service of Holy Communion in church at 4pm (observing COVID 19 restrictions including face coverings). Please keep your distances especially at the end of the service and do not sing. Do not congregate in the doorway, people need to leave safely, THANKS..


BIBLE VERSE FOR THE WEEK          John 15:5, 8

5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.



Say again?

Three elderly church ministers, all hard of hearing, were playing golf one sunny spring morning.  The Methodist minister observed, ‘Windy, isn’t it?’  ‘No,’ the Baptist pastor said, ‘it’s Thursday.’  The Anglican vicar agreed: ‘So am I!  Let’s go get a pint.’


The children were lined up in the cafeteria of a Catholic elementary school for lunch.  At the head of the table was a large pile of apples.  A nun had posted a note on the apple tray, ‘Take only ONE.  God is watching.’

At the other end of the table was a large pile of chocolate chip cakes, next to which, in a child’s handwriting, was a sign, ‘Take all you want.  God is watching the apples.’

Of mice and men

A minister went into his local pet shop to ask for some help. ‘I need at least 50 mice, 2,000 ants and as many of those little silverfish that you can get.’

The pet shop owner was startled.  ‘We can probably do that, but it might take some time. Mind if I ask why you are placing such an unusual order?’

The minister shrugged.  ‘It’s simple. I’ve accepted a call to another church, and the church council told me to leave the vicarage the way I found it.’

Whose fault is it, anyway?

In a small town a businessman put in planning permission to build a nightclub complete with dancing girls.  The local church started a vigorous campaign to block it from opening.  The church launched a petition and held prayers in public.  Work progressed, however, right up until the week before opening.  Then one night a bolt of lightning strike hit the nightclub and it burned to the ground.

The church members were rather smug after that, until the nightclub owner sued them all – on the grounds that they were responsible for the fire. Loudly protesting their total non-involvement and innocence, the church members were all taken to court.

As the case began, the judge looked over the paperwork and observed: ‘I don’t know how I’m going to decide this.  It appears that we have a nightclub owner who believes in the power of prayer, and an entire church congregation that doesn’t!’


Answers to last week’s crossword:

ACROSS: 1: Depend. 4: Canopy. 7: Beak. 8: Irritate. 9: Zedekiah. 13: Ate.            16: Job’s comforter. 17: NAE. 19: Lang Syne. 24: Blockade. 25: Five. 26: Enigma. 27: Drench.


DOWN: 1: Debt. 2: Peaceable. 3: Drink. 4: Curia. 5: Nuts. 6: Put it. 10: Excel.       11: Is man. 12: Hoofs. 13: Attention. 14: Ezra. 15: Ijon. 18: Aslan. 20: Abana.        21: Greed. 22: GCMG. 23: Leah.


Crossword Clues



1  Tertullus, who presented the high priest’s case against Paul in his trial before Felix, was one (Acts 24:1) (6)

4  As balm (anag.) (6)

8  Having explored Canaan, he and Joshua urged the Israelites to take possession of it (Numbers 13:30) (5)

9  On becoming king of Judah, he had all six of his brothers killed                             (2 Chronicles 21:4) (7)

10 ‘Even the — has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself’                (Psalm 84:3) (7)

11 Banishment (Jeremiah 29:1) (5)

12 ‘And now I will show you the most — way’ (1 Corinthians12:31) (9)

17 ‘Titus did not exploit you, did he? Did we not —— the same spirit and follow the same course?’ (2 Corinthians 12:18) (3,2)

19 Mice den (anag.) (7)

21 How Egypt is often described in the Old Testament: ‘the land of — ’           (Exodus 13:3) (7)

22 One of the first Levites to resettle in Jerusalem after the exile in Babylon            (1 Chronicles 9:15) (5)

23 ‘As a sheep before her shearers is —, so he did not open his mouth’            (Isaiah 53:7) (6)

24 Paul’s birthplace (Acts 22:3) (6)




1  Ravenous insect inflicted on Egypt in vast numbers as the eighth plague      (Exodus 10:14) (6)

2  Well-being (Philippians 2:20) (7)

3  Small piece of live coal or wood in a dying fire (Psalm 102:3) (5)

5  Sportsman or woman (2 Timothy 2:5) (7)

6  The original name of Abraham’s wife (Genesis 17:15) (5)

7  ‘So in Christ we who are many form one body, and each — belongs to all the others’ (Romans 12:5) (6)

9  According to Peter, a wife’s beauty should not come from wearing this                 (1 Peter 3:3) (9)

13 ‘For God did not send his Son into the world to — the world’ (John 3:17) (7)

14 ‘The Lord of heaven and earth…does not live in — built by hands’                  (Acts 17:24) (7)

15 ‘If your hand — you to sin, cut it off’ (Mark 9:43) (6)

16 Something like these fell from Saul’s eyes as soon as Ananias placed his hands on him (Acts 9:18) (6)

18 Track (Job 41:30) (5)

20 Religious doctrine (5)




Prayers are requested for the following:

Rod’s younger brother Tom.

Rod’s son Steven.

Rod’s friend Elanea Maoudis

For Ann Westerman’s brother Bob, who has liver cancer.

Pray for Val’s auntie Helen.

Pray for Mignons daughter Andrea suffering with breast cancer

Chris Foxton’s (Sunday evening congregation) nephew Russell and his wife Rosio.

Barry’s (Sunday evening congregation) brother-in-law Roger and wife Kathleen.

Carol and Jim’s grandson Reiss – he has been measured for the brace. Please pray for the funding to be made available.

Kathy (Mike’s sister in Leeds) who is awaiting tests to understand her ongoing health problem


Local Clergy

Dave and Amy Barker (Walsgrave Baptist ministers)

Malcolm (Vicar at St Mary’s, Walsgrave) and Frances Tyler (retired).

Brian Nash (Vicar at St Chad’s, Wood End)

George Bennett (Priest at St Patrick’s RC, Potters Green)


Please pray for:

Mike, Marjorie, Mignon, Zena, Ruth, Felicity, Addis and the Oromo people, Beryl, Bill and Celia, Ken.

All our local businesses, that they may survive through this difficult time. Give thanks for all who work in them and their families.

Pray for all the front-line workers who are enabling our lives to progress in these difficult times.




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‘Christmas may look different, but the story is still the same!’

That’s the message for Christmas in 2020. Coronavirus will make our celebrations this year look very different from usual. However, the message of the baby born in Bethlehem is still relevant!

In one nativity play, the highlight was to illuminate Jesus, with a light in the manger, when all the other lights were turned off. At the appropriate time, all the lights went out, including the manger one. The silence was broken when one of the shepherds loudly whispered: ‘Hey, you turned off Jesus.’ Of course, nobody can turn off Jesus this Christmas!

The angels announced, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; He is the Messiah, the Lord.’ (Luke 2: 10,11). The birth of this baby brings great joy and good news for everyone! As the king of the universe, He has come as our Saviour. In an uncertain world, He offers joy and hope, because He holds this pandemic in His hands. This is a real cause for joy!

‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom His favour rests.’ (Luke 2:14). We may feel anything but peace amid the anxieties over our current circumstances. How can a Jewish infant born to a peasant family in first century Palestine bring peace to our lives today? Jesus established peace with God through His death on the cross. Trusting the Prince of Peace for our lives brings God’s peace amid the huge uncertainties we face. As the carol says, ‘Joy to the world, the Lord has come, let earth receive her King.’