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Bill’s Letter for October 2013

This is the time of year when we celebrate our harvest festival. As our lives are moving away from being involved in the production of food, it is even more important to reflect on what we eat and where it comes from.  A recent survey showed that a third of primary school children thought cheese came from plants and 1 in 5 thought chicken was the principal ingredient in fish fingers.

Food can become a commodity, something we mindlessly consume on our way to doing other things.  It’s very easy to go to the shops, buy what we want as cheaply as possible, but without any real thought of where our food is coming from.  The principles of Fairtrade are important to help each person in the supply chain get a just reward. Our choices of where we shop and what we buy can make a difference

For Christians, food is not a commodity, rather it is God’s way of providing for the life of the world.  I came across the phrase, “Food is God’s love made delectable”. The story of creation celebrates the  wonder of plants and animals that provide food for each other.  A simple way to avoid taking food for granted is to say grace before meals.  This was the normal thing to do with the people I stayed with in Africa, and I believe it used to be more usual here. Simply to pause and reflect on the gift of food, to give thanks to our creator and for those who have helped bring the food to the table, gives the right perspective.

As we meditate on our food, we are taken into a deeper mystery. The story of food is one of life and death, whether of plant or animal. This opens up the idea of sacrifice, sacrifice that brings life out of death.  As we accept this building block of creation then we are able to move closer to an understanding of the sacrifice of Jesus, who gave his life that we might have life.

We would like to invite you to join in these celebrations of God’s good gifts at Harvest.  There will be a Ceilidh with a live band on    Saturday 12th October at St Peter’s School (please see page 10 for details and ring 835746 for tickets), then our Harvest Festival service at 10am on Sunday 13th October.  On Tuesday 15th October there will be a harvest lunch open to all in the village but especially aimed at the more mature members of the community.