Dear friends,

 I hope you are keeping well and that over the past couple of months you have enjoyed the brighter weather and getting out a bit more. This month the seasons change, which is often met with mixed responses. The themes we have been thinking about in church though are less changing, as we continue with the theme of responsibility.

During the pandemic we have all become increasingly aware of our responsibility towards one other -Our obligation to look out for one another, led by our concern for our family, friends, neighbours and strangers. We have realised how much we depend on one another for all sorts of things. We have put our trust in each other as we have moved forward, sometimes in times of uncertainly and anxiety.

During September, at Church we were thinking about creation-tide. We celebrated God's amazing world, while recognising our responsibility towards it. As we continued to acknowledge our concern for one another's welfare, we also thought about our concern for the welfare of our beautiful and delicate planet and the living things within it.

This year as a church community we have also been thinking about our responsibility towards the church -how, why and what we want to preserve and share with others about our faith, about God, about what this means in our lives and how we put this into practice. I am delighted that after a year of conversations, meetings, discussions, a survey, and lots of thought and prayer, we can announce the churches new vision statement: Reaching out in love, growing in faith, welcoming all.

‘Reaching out in love' recognizes our responsibility as Christian's to care for one another in practical and pastoral ways. ‘Growing in faith' recognises our spiritual side and our intention to develop our relationship with God, as well as our aim to grow as a Church. ‘Welcoming all' recognises our responsibility as Christian's to share our church and faith with all people.

During this month, we continue the theme of responsibility as we are still thinking about our responsibility towards St. Guthlac's Church. As a church we are not just interested in our wonderful building, but also in worship, in our community, and in the people and situations within Market Deeping and beyond. As we ‘reach out in love' we seek to support our local community in a range of different ways (from supporting the schools to assisting with the running of the almshouses, from helping families during times of grief to celebrating with people in times of joy, from supporting local charities to spending time with people from our local care homes, and so on). We do this because of our faith in a God who loves us and loves his people.

We can only do this though because of your support, which we are grateful and thankful for. We are asking everyone this month to consider how you might be able to support the church, which in turn will help us continue to support our local community. Perhaps you have some time you could give, or a skill you could offer, or a financial donation either regularly or as a one-off. It really would be much appreciated and well used. Thank you. There is more about this later in the magazine.

This month we are also hoping to release a short film about some aspects of the life of the church, so do keep an eye on the Churches website, Facebook page and YouTube channel for this. For now though, I continue to wish you all well and ask that you continue to keep the churches mission and ministry in your prayers, as we seek to reach out in love, grow in faith and welcome all.

With warmest wishes and prayers,
Rev'd George.