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Golders Green Parish Church – Newsletter
17th June 2020
My Lockdown by Rex Morton
This has been a remarkable and unusual time, and it has been difficult for us all. Like many of you, I received a letter from the NHS in the first days of April requesting that I ‘shielded’. This, they said, meant that I could not leave my home and could only open the window to gain some fresh air. Sarah and I were in Kent, keeping out of the way, we had both been enjoying an hours walk in the countryside almost every day, so this came as a real shock. To my relief, two days later, I received another letter that said I could sit in the garden to enjoy the sunshine, but no going out for a walk! So I went onto the internet to find other ways to exercise and keep fit as I could no longer go outside the garden.
I had already taken the advice I had read from people, like submariners and those working in Antarctica who are very familiar with being unable to go outside, and established a rhythm to my day and my week. I began each day with my prayers and Bible reading and then of course there was work to be done. I heard an interview back in March from an Italian saying we would become centred around food in a lockdown, and that is certainly the case for me, “What are we having for dinner.” Has become a central question in my day!
I do not think I realised how much I missed our walks until a couple of weeks ago, when I read on the BBC news webpage that the Government was easing the lockdown for those of us shielding. We would now be allowed to leave homes for an hour of exercise everyday if we deemed it safe enough to do so.
Our home here in Kent is surrounded by fields and woods, so it did not take Sarah and I long to decide that it was indeed safe enough for us to get out for a walk and so we went on our first outing in 10 weeks. It was so good to out in the countryside again.
And what a difference it made to us, I hadn’t allowed myself to think too much about what I was missing, I had been doing exercise everyday using an on-line fitness class, but there is nothing like being out in the fresh air.
I had forgotten all the scents in the woods and the way the light comes through the canopy. During the lockdown we had missed most of the spring flowers, they had come into bloom without us, but the summer flowers were there waiting for us to enjoy.
I do not think I realised just how much we get from walking in the open, seeing nature close up, and I don’t think I’ll ever take it for granted again!
I know that many of you, very sensibly, are still shielding where you live as it is still is not safe for you to go out for a walk, but the day is coming when you will and I hope that you enjoy the fresh air and sights that have been hidden from us, as much as Sarah and I did.

It was during one of the many clergy Zoom meetings that I have been part of during the lockdown, that I heard of this book, Emotionally Healthy Spirituality by Peter Scazzero (Zondervan Trade; Updated edition (1 Jun. 2017) ISBN-10: 0310348498 ISBN-13: 978-0310348498).
Peter Scazzero’s book draws of his own personal experiences, he writes how he would respond to certain situations in unhelpful ways. How he, without being conscious of it, had soaked up bad habits and behaviours from his background, that meant he was not the husband or church leader he had hoped to be. Even as a married man with a family, Pete realised that he was emotionally immature, and that this immaturity affected not just his life with other people but also his life with God. The book outlines the journey he undertook and the discoveries that he made.
I have heard or read of much of what he writes but have never seen all together in one place or so clearly written. I could hardly put it down and have taken to heart some of its lessons.
I will be hosting a Zoom group on Monday evenings at 7pm, for anyone who thinks they might benefit from reading this book with others, perhaps even sharing with the group some of your own discoveries that have been made (but of course only what you wish to share).
The first meeting will be on Monday 22nd June at 7pm. On this first evening I will outline much more of the content of the book and how the group might work so that you will be better able to decide if this is for you, If you would like to be part of the first evening then please email me at and I will be happy to send you an invite.
Lockdown – Birds, Cats and Water       Sally
Listening to people’s experiences of lockdown it has been interesting to hear about the popular things they have noticed and enjoyed. Top of the list must be our growing awareness and appreciation of Nature who seems to be reclaiming her own in this time of very little traffic, fewer people on the roads, with no aircraft polluting the skies making the air more breathable and fresh. We have become more aware of the luscious greenness of the trees and richness of blossoming plants. Of particular mention has been the songs of birds that are louder, clearer and seem to go on for much longer- or is it we have more time and greater silence to listen to them than we have before. I love birds and their songs. Like so many I have Robins in my garden that like to come quite close, one even hopped into my conservatory, by accident I am sure, but it was a beautiful visit.  As I hang feeding boxes around for the birds I thought it would be nice to buy a bird bath from the Woodland Trust to leave on the ground for them to splash around in and for me to watch them. So I did. It is pottery with a ripple design in brown and green and a line of Blake’s poetry round the rim, not that the birds can read, but I can and I like Blake’s poetry.  So, watching in anticipation, guess who my first visitor was?
Yes, here she is, a large ginger cat lapping away as if she hadn’t had a drink for ages. Having found my garden, she seems to be making it her own and, as cats do, looks at me as if I am the interloper. Now she comes every day, with a couple of friends. So, I have had to buy a pedestal on which to put the bath hoping they can’t reach up for their daily drink and deprive the birds.
Seeing her drinking reminded me of my visit to the Holy Land in 2018 with a group of friends from a Church in North Devon. We went to the site of the pool of Bethesda, where the crippled man who could never get into the pool was healed by Jesus (John 5: v1-9). It is an amazing site, one place where you really can imagine the scene at that time. The vicar, who was leading the party, had brought some water all the way from a Holy Well in Devon with which to anoint us during the service we were holding at the site of the pool. As he poured the water in the dish beside him, a large ginger cat jumped up on the bench and started drinking from it and not just a little bit. We all sat and watched in amusement wondering if there would be any water left. But when she had finished she didn’t just go away, she sat close beside him for the whole of our service. As our party came up to be anointed with the water each person automatically passed by her and stroked her head. Then, when we thought we had finished, we noticed a whole queue of visitors from other parties, Roman Catholics, Lutherans et al, from different countries, speaking many languages, lining up to receive a blessing with the water and the queue got longer and longer.
The water lasted, how I do not know, but it did and I have to say this was one goose-pimply moment for all of us who felt we had experienced something quite amazing due to one cat and a bottle of water, with a large number of people we did not know who instinctively came together to share a common experience.  I have never forgotten that time and seeing the visiting ginger cat in my garden, drinking from my bowl, was a powerful reminder of another cat, some water and the pool of Bethesda.
Daily Hope - The Church of England Phone line church service - is available 24 hours a day on 0800 804 8044 – has been set up particularly with those unable to join online church services during the period of restrictions in mind.
Please continue to pray for those who have asked us as a community to pray for them
Okey Jnr, Margaret, Yvone, Anna, Jason, Ian, Eva, Juliette, Ivor, Myfanwy, Tim and Dorothy

We at Golders Green Church will continue to offer a number of ways we can and will keep in contact though emailing and phoning each other, the use of Facebook and the website, sending out updates by supporting those who need shopping, prescriptions fetched, letters posted and anything else you may need if you are isolated at home, whether you are in the over 70-year-old age group, or, have underlying health conditions.
The important thing is, PLEASE LET US KNOW. We are drawing up a list of volunteers we can call on to help. If anyone wants to add their names to this, please email Rex
Alban Pilgrimage Eucharist Sunday 21 June, 10am
Hear from Parish Priest, Broadcaster and former Communard, The Rev'd Richard Coles as part of a special live streamed service at 10am on YouTube. Our local MP Daisy Cooper will also feature, as well as other churches from around the world that have links to Alban.
Radio, Television and Online Worship

You may wish to join in worship during this time through television and radio.
Check online, in the Radio Times and elsewhere for details:
Songs of Praise BBC 1, Sunday afternoon, variable times
Sunday Worship BBC Radio 4, Sunday, 8.10am Choral Evensong BBC
Radio 3, Wednesday Daily Service
BBC Radio 4 (Longwave only), weekdays, 9.45am
Big Sunday Service Premier Christian Radio, Sunday, 7am, 8am, 10am Easter Sunday Eucharist A service is usually broadcast on the BBC on Easter morning
Free 24 hour telephone church service 0800 804 8044
Online resources Church of England Daily Prayer St Paul’s Cathedral have a number of resources available for us to use.
Church of England Online Resources during this time
Go On-line to " ps://", put in Area or post code and find a local church that broadcasts Worship.
Prayers from Christian Aid Pray as you Go (a short service each day in the Jesuit Tradition)
LICC have some great resources on their website
Especially on Covid-19

YouTube - Worship Video of the week
Be still (Hill Song Worship)
Do you have favourite worship songs? Please email them to Rex a 

Rex Morton, 17/06/2020
Hello and welcome to our church. If you are a new visitor, we have a page for you to get to know us and learn more about planning a visit.
Click here to see more.

Planning your Visit

WhatsApp Image 2021-11-26 at 1Welcome

New to Church

Welcome. Whether you've just moved to the area, or have lived here all your life - we hope our website helps you find out what you want to know about Golders Green Parish Church.

Key information about the church:-

When and where does the church meet?
What to expect when I visit the church?
Is there a dress code?
Will I be made to feel uncomfortable?
I have more questions, how can I get in touch and ask them?

When and where does the church meet?
The church meets every Sunday at 10.00am. It helps to get there 10 minutes early and be seated in time for the service to start. We meet at Golders Green Parish Church, our address is West Heath Drive, Golders Green, London, NW11 7QG. 

What to expect when I visit the church?
You can expect a warm welcome, great worship, an impacting preach and a friendly group of people gathering to learn more about God. Also FREE tea, coffee and biscuits!

Is there a dress code?
No, just wear something comfortable!

Will I be made to feel uncomfortable?
 We want you to feel at home and enjoy the service. Do join us for a hot drink and biscuits after the service to get to know some people from the church.

I have more questions, how can I get in touch and ask them?
Please feel free to call 020 8455 1873 or email the church office with any questions you have and we will be happy to help you.