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Golders Green Parish Church – Newsletter

14 April 2021


Prince Philip



So many tributes have been paid to Prince Phillip in the past days; his loyalty and support to the Queen over so many years; his strength, always being there for her in their long marriage and for his family; his initiatives that have helped so many develop and thrive; that his passing in the fullness of 99 years will certainly leave a gap for this country and other nations who had much respect for him. As churchwardens and PCC we are sure Golders Green congregation would want us to send our condolences to Her Majesty and her family who, like so many in the same situation, will be grieving their great loss.

Greetings to everyone: This is an important week for us as we think and pray for Tony and Pam who, with the Bishop, Archdeacon, and sub-Area Dean, are drawing up the final shortlist for those who have applied to be our next incumbent. Interviewing is a hard and demanding responsibility and we wish them well along with those to be interviewed. We are nearly there after a long time – keep praying that the right person will be appointed for us and the wider community.
It is also an important week for everyone else in the country as lockdown restrictions are gradually lifted. Let us hope that everyone keeps a sense of responsibility and care, as much for themselves as for each other, so that Covid rates stay under control remembering there are plenty of people still vulnerable and shielding.
It is so encouraging to hear the appreciative things said about the newsletter and it is a pleasure to edit it but, it is only as good as those who contribute to it; it would be so welcoming if more articles could come from any of you who would like to send one in. It could be about anything you feel moved to write about. I know, from conversations, that you have many interesting life stories of your own as well as thoughts about how things are in the present day – why not share them! 
Love and good wishes - Sally


This weeks edition includes:
  • Update from Tony;
  • Sermon from Charlotte;
  • Update on Night Shelter from Nehar
  • Prayer for Asylum Seekers and Refugees;
  • Reflections from Nehar;
  • “Helping Young Ones to Pray” from Sally;
  • Book Recommendations;
  • How We Are.
  • Links to services, hymns, and broadcasts.
  • Zoom links.


Thanks to Jenny for sending a photo of “Spring in the Church Grounds” taken after church on Sunday.



From Tony

As I write this, I think I am able to let you know that Pamela and I along with Bishop Rob, the Archdeacon, Rev. John and a sub area Dean, Rev. Matthew, as our Area Dean, Rev. Julie, was away on retreat, interviewed that four candidates for the post of our incumbency.  Following the interviews, we agreed that there were a number of outstanding candidates whom we would like to see in the parish.  They have been invited to the Parish so that they could see the building the Vicarage meet us in person and see the area.  If I am able to do so, I will let you know when this is likely to happen.
So I would like to thank you for praying but still ask that you pray for us because this is not over by any stretch of the imagination yet.  We may find ourselves in a position that means we have to go back out again and invite more applicants, or we may press on with those we have invited to come back.  So watch this space folks and keep praying.
This weekend on Sunday Rachel G will be coming to lead our service in person and over zoom so it would be good to see some of you in church.
In this newsletter you will find new zoom links to Sunday services and to the prayer meetings on a Wednesday evening.  We have to do this because we needed a new account for Zoom, one that is not dependent on one church member but will be accessible via the Churchwardens.
I would encourage and ask you to join in prayer both publicly and privately, as I know you have been doing.  It is very encouraging to pray together because together we hear the heartbeat of each other as to what is driving us and what our concerns are.  It is also a very good way of encouraging each other in our discipleship to know that our brothers and sisters love God and want to talk to him but also it is educational and encouraging (if you struggle with public prayer) when we see how our brothers and sisters pray to the Father in heaven.  This is why Jesus taught His disciples what we call the Lord’s prayer and why we have those records of prayers in John 17 and elsewhere in Acts 4;23 to 31 and the records of what Paul prayed for each of his churches in his letters to them.  It is also why we have great prayers set out in full in the Old Testament.
Church Wardens is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Prayer Meetings
Time: Apr 14, 2021 07:30 PM London
        Every week on Wed, until May 26, 2021, 7 occurrence(s)
        Apr 14, 2021 07:30 PM
        Apr 21, 2021 07:30 PM
        Apr 28, 2021 07:30 PM
        May 5, 2021 07:30 PM
        May 12, 2021 07:30 PM
        May 19, 2021 07:30 PM
        May 26, 2021 07:30 PM
Please download and import the following iCalendar (.ics) files to your calendar system.
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 917 9672 6926
Passcode: 021414
One tap mobile
+442080806592,,91796726926#,,,,*021414# United Kingdom
+443300885830,,91796726926#,,,,*021414# United Kingdom
Dial by your location
        +44 208 080 6592 United Kingdom
        +44 330 088 5830 United Kingdom
        +44 131 460 1196 United Kingdom
        +44 203 481 5237 United Kingdom
        +44 203 481 5240 United Kingdom
        +44 203 901 7895 United Kingdom
        +44 208 080 6591 United Kingdom
Meeting ID: 917 9672 6926
Passcode: 021414
Find your local number:

Sermon from Charlotte - Easter 2 2021



The Incredulity of St Thomas by Caravaggio 1601-1602

I think most Christians and Christian communities can pinpoint the great moments of celebration that take place within their individual lives and the lives of their communities. Our liturgies are designed to begin a particular part of a person's life or calling with a great liturgy of celebration; – a baptism at the start of a child's life; the confirmation of a young – or old – person; two people beginning their married life together, or a priest at an ordination. Those great celebrations exist within the liturgical year as we mark the aspects of the Christian faith, and the Easter liturgy is the greatest of all. It was muted this year, but if you have ever attended an Easter vigil, late on Saturday evening or early on the Sunday morning, you will know of the drama, as the fire is lit, the Easter proclamation is sung, the bells are rung at the Gloria, the lights turned on reveal the church decorated with flowers - how could anyone not feel joy at such a service?
But, like any other celebration – once the Christening cake has been eaten, the couple have returned from honeymoon, the newly ordained priest has chaired their first PCC meeting – the real work begins. And so it is for the disciples after the initial joy of discovering that the resurrection has happened, and so it is for us. 
It's easy to get out of bed on the day of a big day; the baptism of a baby; the wedding of two people you love, a joyous celebration of Easter. The challenge is to take that fire and joy – in this case the fire and joy of Easter - and continue to live the resurrection. 
That's not what we find the disciples doing in today's Gospel. They had locked the doors of their house, in fear. They were afraid, and hiding, rather than dealing with the reality of what had happened. It is the evening of Easter day when we come across the first scene John describes. Mary Magdalene had just that morning seen the risen Lord Jesus. The Risen Christ appears to them through that door they had locked in fear and shows them the wounds in his hands and his side, so they can have no doubt that what they are seeing is Jesus risen from the dead. But they don't them go on to face the reality and the enormity of what Jesus' appearance meant. It's clear that some of them – or one of them at least – didn't believe it had happened. A week later John sets the scene again and they are still there in that house, the same doors, locked. Nothing has changed. 
Contrast this with what has happened to the tomb; a place designed to be locked, and sealed, forever. The door to the tomb has been unlocked, and thrown open; the tomb is empty as the risen Jesus is in the world. But the door to the disciples' house remains closed and locked. The mirroring is the fact that whilst Jesus' tomb has become a place witnessing to life, the disciples' house has become a tomb. They are refusing to face the reality of the resurrection. They cannot cope with the fact that life is different now. It might have even been easier for the resurrection never to have happened. That would have been a crushing disappointment and sadness, but easier to accept – because normality would have resumed. They could eventually have returned to their old lives, slinking back to their families and their old professions, and written the last few years off as a strange, exciting but ultimately disappointing experience. But the resurrection means that isn't a possibility. The resurrection means they no longer have the option to return to their old way of existence. And although John's description of the situation is of the house; the doors and the locks, what he is really describing is the condition of the disciples hearts. 
So I suppose the question to ask ourselves is, how has our experience of Easter this year – indeed every year, changed us? What are the doors in our lives that we have locked, and refused or denied to allow the risen Jesus into? Maybe you can sympathise with the disciples you feel fear. Maybe like Thomas it is disbelief. Perhaps it's anger or resentment. 
Christ stands among his people and says, 'Peace be with you.' In John's Gospel he stands among a group of friends who deserted him, denied him. He doesn't go round and point fingers and say, 'You fell asleep in the garden! I told you to stay awake!' or 'Well well well, Peter, what did I say would happen before the cock crowed? And what happened?' There are no 'I told you so's', no retributions, no settling of scores in the way that would be so tempting if we found ourselves in such a situation. Just, 'Peace be with you', and he breathes his Spirit onto them. 
But although he doesn't bring up all the wrongs that have been done to him – by those he's gathered with or anyone else – that doesn't mean that the resurrection has made all those things disappear. His appearance is not wiping away everything that has gone before. The risen Jesus bears the marks of the crucifixion. So Easter is not a totally clean slate, wiping away everything that we have done. But it does mean that those wounds and those wrongs are transformed. We no longer need to be defined by our sin or our guilt or our mistakes. The empty tomb is testament to the fact that we are loved, and that love is stronger than death. 
After those initial resurrection appearances, the risen Jesus goes on being present amongst the Christian community. In the reading we heard from Acts this morning we heard that 'the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul...there was not one needy person among them.' The risen Christ has transformed this new community, who are now bound together – the fact we are told that 'there was not one needy person among them' tells us something about the community they had become; where each member of the community was able to be open about their needs with the others, and that burdens were shared. That's something for the Christian community as a whole to think about, as well as individual Christian communities like parish churches. I think Eastertide is a good time, particularly in the light of this passage from Acts, to reflect on the joys but also the shortcomings of Christian communities. Give thanks for the times that your own Christian community – both this one and others you have been a part of – has been able to meet your needs; when you have been able to share the difficulties you have been facing and have been met with love and compassion, so that you have not been needy. But maybe also reflect upon the times you haven't felt able to do that, and ask yourself why you couldn't, why you were left in need – or when you know someone else in the community was. One of the ways the risen Christ makes himself known to us is through each other and part of the way we must live in the light of the resurrection is being Christ to one another and ensuring that our communities are like that community in Acts where there was not one needy person among them. 
Easter Day was not a happy ending for the disciples, just as I said last week it is not a happy ending for us. It doesn't wipe away pain or fear or grief. It was a difficult truth for the disciples to accept – even a week after hearing the news they were still hiding in their locked house. But the risen Christ continued to breath the Spirit into them and so they could go on to form these communities where there was not one needy person, because each of them was able to unlock the doors to the difficult parts of their lives and allow him in. Alleluia, Christ is risen. He is risen indeed, Alleluia.

Update on Night Shelter - Nehar

The Night shelter work is going really well.  We were told that funding has been given for it to be extended to the end of May.  Last week the full quota of 16 guests had been reached.  We have undertaken to supply meals for three Fridays running in April.  We have the funding for it.

Sally Barnes has kindly donated and ordered teas/coffees, biscuits, milk and hot chocolate sachets from a catering company which has enabled us to make up bags for each guest to last the week.  We do every week.  Thank you to those who have donated to the project and we will be able to use the monies to buy the next lot of teas and coffees.  A big thank you to Jennifer for bagging up these and for Rose to happily receiving the big box when it is delivered.
Thank you also to our tiny band of volunteers – Soheil, Silvia and Shaniv – who take turns to go every other Friday to hand out the food.  It has been fantastic that we have been able to contribute to this project in such a wonderful way.

Prayer for Asylum Seekers and Refugees



Icon: “Mother of God: Protectress of the Oppressed”


“God, no one is stranger to you and no one is ever far from your loving care.
In your kindness watch over migrants, refugees and asylum seekers,
Those separated from their loved ones,
Those who are lost and those who have been exiled from their homes.
Bring them safely to the place where they long to be,
Help us always to show your kindness to strangers And those in need.
We ask this through Christ our Lord,
Who too was a refugee and migrant
Who travelled to another land Searching for a home.
SOURCE: Nouwen Network


Reflection on John 11: 25-26 – Nehar

“I am the resurrection and the life.  The one who believes in me will live, even though they die, and whoever lives by believing in me will never die”
John continues to look at the I AM statements of Jesus which define the identity of God.  There would have been no doubt in the minds of his Jewish listeners that Jesus’ I AM proclamations meant that he was equating Himself to Yahowa.  The name that God gave Himself when Moses asked Him who should he say had sent him.  God said tell them I AM had send him.  I AM conveyed that God has always existed; He unlike everything else was not created; is eternal; without beginning, the Alpha, and without end, the Omega.

We all know the story of the raising of Lazarus by Jesus.  Jesus had raised others from the dead – but was so special about this raising.  Mary and Martha send word to Jesus that Lazarus was ill – Jesus stayed where He was for 2 more days.  He does not send word to the sisters that their brother will be healed.  He could have healed him from where he was as with the daughter of the Roman centurian – but he does not.  He gets to Bethany – by then Lazarus had been in the tomb for four days.  It is interesting that Martha and Mary’s roles are reversed.  When Jesus had visited their home before, it was Mary who had stayed and listened to him whilst Martha was in the kitchen; it was Mary who had washed his feet with perfume and her hair!

What had happened now? Why did she not run out to greet Jesus? Is it because she was angry with him or disappointed as we are when God does not act/or respond the way we think he should!  As I have read this passage Mary’s reaction has caused me to pause.  I then saw why the light was focussed on Martha.    It was to her that Jesus reveals a wonderful truth so that she too could see who he is – perhaps she had not seen it fully before now. 

When she says that her brother will be resurrected on the last day.  She is talking about the future but Jesus tells her that He is the resurrection and the life – now and in the future. Those who believe in Him will never die.  He asks her if she believes this. Her answer confirms that she finally sees who He is – the Messiah, the Son of God who had been prophesied about.  It is the same realization that Peter was given by the Holy Spirit - that Jesus is the promised Messiah who had come into the world to save it.

In 11:25-26 Jesus is talking about resurrection now and in the future.  Jesus is telling Martha that those who believe in Him can never die but have eternal life. He is talking not of the physical but of the spiritual as he did with the Bread.   He is talking about the present.  He is talking about spiritual renewal now as well physical renewal on the last day. He had said the same to Nicodemus that no one can enter the kingdom of heaven unless they are born again – John 3:5-8.  You have to be born of the Holy Spirit – it is He who opens our hearts to believing in Jesus. 

Paul in Romans 6: 5-10 says our old selves ruled by sin died with Him on the cross and through faith in Him our new selves set free from sin by the blood of the lamb rise with Him so that we can live righteous lives for God.  This is the spiritual birth that Jesus talked to Nicodemus about.  The coming back into relationship with God.

In 1 Corinthians 15:45-50 Paul tells us that those who have fallen asleep in faith will be raised on the last day – they will be raised with new bodies. In the same way as Jesus was – after He rose again, His body was different - in that although he walked through walls, he also had breakfast with the disciples on the beach!  This is talking about the future.

Coming back to Lazarus, why did Jesus wait? Because the Father told Him to; to glorify the Father; and to point to the cross where death would be defeated once and for all.  Raising Lazarus showed the power of Christ in being the resurrection and the life.   This would be ultimately demonstrated by the cross. Death came into the world by the disobedience of one man - Adam – and was defeated once and for all by the obedience of another – Jesus – 1 Corinthians 15:22. What Jesus said to Martha was that He is the resurrection and the life – both of our spirits as well as our bodies.  The spirit here and now and bodies on the last day. We have to believe by the blowing of the Holy Spirit in our lives in Jesus’ work of salvation on the cross to have eternal life and in Him – to be one with the Father and the Son.

YouTube - Worship Videos of the week :

Worthy is the lamb


“Helping Young Ones to Pray” from Sally



St Anne teaching St Mary to Read
from a Mediaeval Rood screen (circa 1335)
 Thetford Suffolk 

In the book section I try to include books that you have recommended plus ones I like and enjoy too.  It would be so good if others of you could send in titles of your favourites for us to enjoy. They can be about anything; fiction books that you have particularly loved; biographies; sport; poetry; devotional; whatever you like. Often reading books recommended by others expands our horizons and opens new worlds. It would be great to hear from you.
This week I have added one written by Miranda Threlfall-Holmes in conjunction with her son Noah. Miranda was a chaplain at Durham University where she lectured in Church history and theology. She is now Rector of the Team Parish of St Luke in the City, Liverpool.  She has written several books, but this is one for younger members and arose out of thinking how can young people be encouraged to pray?
What would engage them willingly in doing so? 
To many, the way we have been brought up to pray can get us into a rut. Miranda knew, for younger children and teenagers, that prayer isn't just a question of closing your eyes and putting your hands together; she felt that there are many, many other ways that could break that often inhibiting cycle and bring out meaningful prayer and reflection. So she and her then teenage son, Noah, set about trying different creative and interactive ways to pray in keeping with their aim to introduce children and young people to prayer. Noah and his friends after discussing with her, shared and tried out many ideas, such as building a decorative prayer tent (often under the kitchen or dining room table), building bible story models, experimenting with home-made or shop-bought Labyrinths, making bubble-wrap prayers, while, at the same time keeping a reflective diary on how each experiment went for them; snippets of what they said are published in the book with the experiments (see below). I went to the publishing party where several of the young people demonstrated what they had done and talked about how they had felt. We were invited to try out the experiments and, while I had a problem with getting down into the prayer tent (which was a favourite with them), I loved the many other prayer-ways suggested. As a result, I bought copies for my young nephews and nieces, children of friends, as did so many parents, youth and church workers. When the book was published it sold so well that a second edition was sold out almost immediately. It is a book tested and enthusiastically approved by children. From their responses it is the perfect prayer book to get the young excited about praying. I can think of several of our young ones who are likely to enjoy trying out some of the ideas.
Since then, in collaboration with a colleague, Mina Munns, Miranda has brought out one for older teenagers and both are available on-line from the usual book shops.
 TeenagerExperiment1  TeenagerExperiment2   TeenagerExperiment3   TeenagerExperiment4

Book Recommendations

  • The Teenage Prayer Experiment Notebook: by Revd Dr Miranda and Noah Threlfall-Holmes 
  • Every Day God: The Spirit of the Ordinary by Paula Gooder;
  • “Borders and Belonging: The Book of Ruth a Story for our Times” by Pádraig Ó Tuama & Glen Jordan. An exploration of Ruth, an outsider, a migrant, a vulnerable woman in a foreign land, told in context with issues of borders that are erected today. Both authors are members of the Corrymeela Community working for peace across Ireland
  • “Wilding: The Return of Nature to a British Farm” by Isabella Tree; 
  • “Dear England”, is the letter the new Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, would like to write to acountry that no longer sees the relevance of a Christian narrative;
  • “Candles in the Dark: Faith, Hope and Love in a Time of Pandemic” by Rowan Williams 
  • If you go to the Edmonton Area link containing information you may find helpful.

    Both links are on: or the facebook page:

You can purchase all the above books from:, or or


How we are:


The positive news is that we seem to be doing well and fine. Perhaps it is because it is the beginning of Spring (although a bit of a cold start!) and many of us have had our first or second vaccines. However, for those of you who may not be feeling too great, but just do not want to mention it, know that we are thinking of you and praying for healing in every area of your lives.
I just want to mention one extremely sad occurrence that happened last week. Although he was not a member of our congregation, it was mentioned by a couple of you who were concerned for his family; that is the tragic death of Richard Okorogheye at 19 years old. Richard went missing from his home in the Kensal Rise Area and many of us put a notice of it on facebook just in case he was seen in our local, nearby areas so a look-out would be kept for him. Tragically he was found days later in Epping Forest assumed drowned. Our prayers and support are for his parents and his wider family currently. If anyone knows his family, it would be appreciated if you would pass on our condolences. Their grief at his loss must be profound as is the grief of all those who have lost their young ones under tragic circumstances.



Please continue to pray for those who have asked us as a community to pray for them

Okey Jnr. O, Margaret M, Yvone S, Anna M, Jason E, Ian K, Eva M, Juliette D, Ivor S, Myfanwy K , Dorothy N, Rose O,  Judy N, David A, Gideon O, Simon H



Zoom link numbers

Please find below the Zoom links for our Sunday Service from the Churchwardens.
The link for the Sundays in April & May are :
Golders Green Parish Church is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Church Services
Time: Apr 18, 2021 10:00 AM London
        Every week on Sun, until May 30, 2021, 7 occurrence(s)
        Apr 18, 2021 10:00 AM
        Apr 25, 2021 10:00 AM
        May 2, 2021 10:00 AM
        May 9, 2021 10:00 AM
        May 16, 2021 10:00 AM
        May 23, 2021 10:00 AM
        May 30, 2021 10:00 AM
Please download and import the following iCalendar (.ics) files to your calendar system.
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 958 4899 4911
Passcode: 950103
One tap mobile
+442034815240,,95848994911#,,,,*950103# United Kingdom
+442039017895,,95848994911#,,,,*950103# United Kingdom
Dial by your location
        +44 203 481 5240 United Kingdom
        +44 203 901 7895 United Kingdom
        +44 208 080 6591 United Kingdom
        +44 208 080 6592 United Kingdom
        +44 330 088 5830 United Kingdom
        +44 131 460 1196 United Kingdom
        +44 203 481 5237 United Kingdom
Meeting ID: 958 4899 4911
Passcode: 950103
Find your local number:

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.

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. Please email

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
Golders Green Parish Church, 14/04/2021
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.