PCN Newsletter 31st July 2020

PCN Newsletter 31st July 2020

When replanting our garden we put herbs near the kitchen door and one of the delights has been how well visited the marjoram is by bees and butterflies. - Sarah

Made of Stories – Let us have your views!

All PCN members have been able to see our five commissioned films on the new website, where we have also housed a number of discussion questions and resources. If and when you have watched the films, it would be great to hear from you! If you are in a PCN group and have watched one of the films together on Zoom or discussed them in some other way, how did that go? You may have sent the website link to other people, possibly family or friends. I wonder what their reaction has been? If you attend a church you might have asked them to put the link to the films on the church’s website. If so what has been the reaction?

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Post covid challenge to parishes

Post covid challenge to parishes

financial fallout to parishes

​A few weeks ago in the Church Times the Revd Stephen Trott criticised the exponentially growing bureaucracy of the CofE diverting resources from parish ministry. A respondent pointed out that in the Chelmsford Diocese while plans were being made to reduce parish clergy numbers there was a simultaneous decision to increase the number of Archdeacons from 4 to 7!

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PCN Newsletter 17th July 2020

PCN Newsletter 17th July 2020

This is the back cover of Issue 30 of Progressive Voices, it made me smile when I first saw it and it still does. I hope that it also strikes a chord with you.

Hopes for a post Covid 19 world

As this regular newsletter ceases at the end of July and a monthly PCN bulletin begins in September, here are the top-10 hopes for a post Covid 19 world, which members have been sending in.

1. Urgently attend to the climate change crisis and learn from what less road and air traffic and hence less pollution and carbon emissions has taught us.

2. Remember all those ‘key workers’ who care for us in so many ways – nurses, care home staff, refuse collectors, supermarket staff and so many more and ensure they are all paid a fair wage.

3. Urgently work to eliminate poverty and consider a universal basic income

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Chasing our tales – Richard Holloway review by  Piers Plowright in The Tablet

Chasing our tales – Richard Holloway review by Piers Plowright in The Tablet

“Making Meaning in a Meaningless Universe” - Holloway resigned his bishopric in 2000, declaring himself an “after religious”

Stories We Tell Ourselves RICHARD HOLLOWAY

Reading this wise, witty and provocative book, I was haunted by a poem: seventeenth-century Welsh poet and doctor Henry Vaughan’s “Vanity of Spirit”. It begins with a hermit/philosopher, “quite spent with thoughts”, deciding to leave his cell for a bit of fresh air and lie down beside a small spring of water. Here he examines the natural world to see if he can get any of the great answers. He can’t, but “having pass’d / Through all the creatures came at last / To search myself, where I did find / Traces and sounds of a strange kind”.

Richard Holloway, former Bishop of Edinburgh and Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church, is on the same journey in his latest book. Its subtitle is “Making Meaning in a Meaningless Universe”. And his path is shaped by examining the stories humans have told and tell themselves to find that meaning. Religious, mystical, scientific, psychological.

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PCN Newsletter 2nd July 2020

PCN Newsletter 2nd July 2020

Launch of our PCN films I am delighted to let all PCN members know that the five short films commissioned by PCN are now available for you to see! You can access the films by using this website address : https://madeofstories.uk

Alongside the films you will find questions for discussion which groups might want to use, alongside resources such as relevant websites and further reading to encourage you to explore the issues raised by the films in more depth.


Thanks to the generosity of PCN members, you are the first to see these films which will be promoted more widely in the coming weeks. Please feel free to let others know of the website link. We do want the films to be viewed by a wide audience! We will shortly have a page on our own PCN website where you can discuss online the films and we would value hearing from you about further resources which you think can be added. The films will also be linked to our Facebook page for those of you who use that particular social media platform for discussion and comment.

Made of Stories marks the beginning of our adventures into the film media and we hope that further films might follow. We shall also be working alongside the Student Christian Movement (SCM) in promoting the films to a young audience.

We hope the films might be shown and their content discussed by our many PCN groups. Convenors can request a discussion booklet about the stories if the group intends to use the films in its meetings on Zoom or in any other way. Contact me to request a booklet.

Finally, we are indebted to the people who volunteered to tell their story and to Shortform, the media company in Manchester, who have produced such professionally executed short films.

Adrian Alker

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