CANON PATRICK’S 103rd LETTER

Dear friends,
Baptisms have always been a central part of our ministry in Christ Church (partly because of
the special emphasis that we have always put welcoming children and their families, and
partly because of our close link with the Model Church in Wales School). For several years
more children were baptized in Christ Church than in all the rest of the churches of the
former Carmarthen Deanery put together.

On many occasions, walking down Picton Terrace, I’ve met mothers who point proudly to
their growing offspring and remark “You christened her (or him), Canon Patrick”. While
small children have often come up to me in the Model School, beaming cheerfully, to say
“My Mum says that you christened me”. It has helped to root our church deeply in the lives
and affections of a wide section of the community in West Carmarthen.

Because of this, lockdown came as a considerable shock, with the cancellation of several
christenings. I couldn’t help wondering whether the links that we had carefully developed
over so many years would be broken. And then last week the phone calls from young mums
asking to have their children christened/baptized unexpectedly began again. Of course, the
present restrictions mean a limit on the number of guests, social distancing, mask-wearing
and sanitizing, but the parents seem quite happy to fit in with that pattern. It’s another
proof that joy (that ‘infallible sign of the presence of God’) is returning to the church after so
many difficult months, and for me personally it’s a wonderful privilege during the closing
phase of my ministry to still have the opportunity to fulfil Christ’s Great Commission to
‘baptize in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit’.

Wednesday 5 May 7pm CHRIST CHURCH COUNCIL on ZOOM. This is to begin the process of
applying for a faculty to carry out the first phase of the repair work to the west wall of the
church recommended by the quinquennial inspection.

SERVICES: Sunday 2 May (SS Philip & James transferred) 9.15am FAMILY EUCHARIST in
Christ Church; 11am HOLY EUCHARIST in Llangunnor and Llannewydd;5pm ZOOM
EVENSONG; Wednesday 5 May (St Asaph’s Day) 10.30am HOLY EUCHARIST (p.287);
Sunday 9 May (Rogation Sunday) 9am ZOOM EUCHARIST (p.140); 11yb CYMUN
BENDIGAID yn Eglwys Crist (t.140); 8am HOLY EUCHARIST in Llangunnor; 5pm ZOOM
EVENSONG; Wednesday 12 May (Ascension Day transferred) HOLY EUCHARIST (p.142).
Seats for services in church have to be pre-booked because of limitations caused by social
distancing. Please contact ROSEMARY BOWEN (English services) & MALCOLM JONES
(gwasanaethau Cymraeg) to ensure a place.

Canon Patrick

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