• St. Andrew's in the early morning sunshine.St. Andrew’s stands at the entrance to the Norfolk village of Great Ryburgh, close to the bridge over the River Wensum. This round tower church with Saxon origins is a distinctive feature of a village that is essentially a working community with a maltings, some light industry and a shop that has been retained as a community venture. 

    The cruciform design of the church building is unusual, each arm  of the cross being almost equal in length.The reordering of the Chancel in 1912 by Sir Ninian Comper gives the building a wonderful feeling of space and light as well as a flexibility of use which the parish uses to full advantage for its services, community events and concerts. 

    St. Andrew's, Great Ryburgh is part of the Upper Wensum Benefice. The Revd. Robin Stapleford looks after seven parishes with the help of reader, Richard Hirst and a number of retired clergy who give generously of their time. 

    Visitors are welcome every day of the week.

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  • WELCOME TO ST. ANDREW'S!

    The church is open for private prayer every day of the week.

    Services have resumed:

    18th and 25th April:  10.30 a.m.  Eucharist.

    Please come and join us, even if you are not familiar with our services!

     

                                    SECOND SUNDAY OF EASTER                                                    

                                                          "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those                                                     

    who have not seen and yet have come to believe."

     

    1 Jesus lives; thy terrors now
    Can, O death, no more appall us;
    Jesus lives: by this we know 
    Thou, O grave, cannot enthrall us.  Alleluia!

     

    2 Jesus lives: henceforth is death
    But the gate to life immortal;
    This shall calm our trembling breath
    When we pass its gloomy portal.  Alleluia!

     

    3 Jesus lives: our hearts know well
    Nought from us his love shall sever;
    Life nor death nor pow'rs of hell
    Tear us from his keeping ever.  Alleluia!

     

    4 Jesus lives: to him the throne
    Over all the world is given:
    May we go where he is gone,
    Rest and reign with him in heaven.  Alleluia!

     

     

    The collect for the Second Sunday of Easter

    Risen Christ, for whom no door is locked, no entrance barred: open the doors of our hearts, that we may seek the good of others and walk the joyful road of sacrifice and peace, to the praise of God the Father. Amen.

     

    Duccio: Christ appears to the Disciples in a locked room.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    The First Reading: Acts 4:32-35

    Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. They laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.

    This first reading forms part of the account of the early Church gathering in its infancy after the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. The apostles referred to in the text are Peter and John who had both been had up by the authorities for healing a lame man and, to the concern of the Jewish scribes and elders, for passing on the good news of the Risen Christ to an ever growing multitude of believers.  Peter and John spoke powerfully and at first hand of their own encounter with Jesus and those who believed  responded and adapted their lifestyle accordingly. They lived in harmony with one another, sharing what they owned and ensuring that nobody was in need.

     

    Psalm 133

    Oh, how good and pleasant it is, when brethren live together in unity! It is like fine oil upon the head that runs down upon the beard,  Upon the beard of Aaron,  and runs  down upon the collar of his robe. It is like the dew of Hermon that falls upon the hills of Zion. For there the Lord has ordained the blessing: life for evermore.

    The image of the oil dripping on to Aaron’s beard is a curious one to us but it refers to the consecrating of a priest with a stream of perfumed oil, carefully blended with aromatic spices, being poured over the priest’s head. The fragrance would fill the air all around and reach out to the worshipping community who in their turn would influence the whole nation for good through living together in harmony. That is the challenge for our church communities today!                  Aaron: Kievan Psalter

     

    The Epistle: 1 John 1:1-2:2                                                                                                                                      

    We declare to you what was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life-- this life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us-- we declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.

    This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true; but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

    My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.

    It is thought that the First Epistle of John was written by the Gospel writer who had lived alongside Jesus and who, having witnessed the events leading up to the Crucifixion, was personally able to attest to the truth of the Resurrection. This was no invention of the human mind but an event in human history bringing joy, hope and peace for all.  As in the previous readings, we are called, with the grace of God, to live in harmony, one with another.

     

    Gospel reading: John 20:19-31

    When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you." After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you." When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.                                                     

    "But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord." But he said to them, "Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe." A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you." Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe." Thomas answered him, "My Lord and my God!" Jesus said to him, "Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe."             

    Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written   so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.

    Today’s Gospel reading is one that resonates with many of us, the account of Doubting Thomas who, having not been present when Christ first appeared to the disciples in the locked room, refused to believe that Christ was risen until he had seen him with his very own eyes. We all have doubts at different points in our lives and that is normal and healthy: we have all been given minds to think for ourselves!  It is often when we feel the most challenged that we come closer to knowing God and find that Faith takes over from Doubt. At that point we rediscover the deep rooted Peace with which Jesus greets his disciples in today’s Gospel.

                                                                                                                                                     Duccio:  The Incredulity of Thomas

     

    • Heavenly Father, we pray that you will help us to live in harmony and that through our fellowship others may come to find Faith.
    • We pray for those who are struggling to see the truth of the resurrection and ask you to make your loving presence known to them.
    • We continue to pray for those known to us who are in poor health, thinking especially of ..................................
    •  We pray at this time for the Queen and the members of the Royal Family and give thanks for their example of duty, commitment and service.
    • We pray for the repose of the souls of those who have recently departed this life, thinking especially of  ..................... and the Duke of Edinburgh. We ask you, Father, to be with the bereaved that they may know the comforting presence of the risen Christ at this time of  great sorrow and sadness. 

     

    The Prayer of St. Anselm

    O Lord my God, teach my heart this day where and how to find you. You have made me and re-made me, and you have bestowed on me all the good things I possess, and still I do not know you.  I have not yet done that for which I was made. Teach me to seek you, for I cannot seek you unless you teach me, or find you unless you show yourself to me. Let me seek you in my desire; Let me desire you in my seeking.  Let me find you by loving you; Let me love you when I find you.

     

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    IF YOU NEED TO REPORT ABUSIVE BEHAVIOUR OF ANY KIND,  YOU CAN CONTACT THE DIOCESAN SAFEGUARDING TEAM ON:

     01603 882345 or safeguarding@dioceseofnorwich.org

    See the  SAFEGUARDING PAGE  for more details.

    OTHER SOURCES OF HELP

    Help for young people wishing to report abusive behaviour

    Parish Safeguarding Officer:   Mary Carden Tel: 07808164686

    Email:  marycarden1@icloud.com

    You can if you wish also contact Childline (childline.org.uk or telephone 0800 1111 This service offers free, confidential advice and support about whatever is worrying you.

    Also: the NSPCC  0800 802020.

    Help for adults wishing to report abusive behaviour

    Parish Safeguarding Officer:   Mary Carden Tel: 07808164686

    Email:  marycarden1@icloud.com

     

     

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    Our church building has been here for over 1,000 years and we try to ensure it is a welcoming and inspiring place for worshippers, local residents, visitors and pilgrims.

     

    The William Martin Building with its much needed handwashing and hospitality facilities is ready to open fully (It was officially opened by the Dean of Norwich on 1st September 2019 when only the outer shell was complete.) We are so grateful to those who built it and to those who donated materials, labour and funds. Do come and have a look!

     

    Pilgrims walking the Walsingham Way are very welcome. We can offer a place to camp, kitchen and W.C. as well as basic shelter if the weather is bad. You can contact the churchwarden on 01328 829413.

     

    Many thanks too to all who helped raise the money to fund the restoration of the westernmost south chancel window! It is now back with us, with help from the Norfolk Churches Trust and the Round Tower Churches Society . The next task is to repair the porch,  its roof in particular needing some attention!

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