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Parish Gallery - Church of the Good Shepherd

50th Anniversary Celebrations May 2009

 

It was on the 17th August 1958 that the Foundation Stone was laid for the building of a church on the Pear Tree Estate; there was a service to celebrate this conducted by The Lord Bishop of Auckland, New Zealand, who had been born in Rugeley in 1883. The building of the Church was completed 8 months later, and the new Church was dedicated by The Bishop of Lichfield on 1st May 1959.

To celebrate this Golden Anniversary there were a number of events, starting on the 1st May 2009 with a Dedication Praise Service with the Archdeacon of Lichfield, The Venerable Chris Liley, and concluding with a Celebration Eucharist on Sunday 10th May 2009 with The Right Reverend Jonathan Gledhill, The Bishop of Lichfield presiding.

The flower festival was one of the core events of the week, each arrangement or display was based on a verse from The 23rd Psalm, The Lord’s my Shepherd.

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THE GOOD SHEPHERD
This Church is dedicated to Jesus, the Good Shepherd; Jesus said: ‘I am the good shepherd, and I know my own sheep, and my own sheep know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep.’ John 10 : 14 - 15

The Good Shepherd

THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD - Vs 1
The writer of the psalm depicts God as the divine shepherd; the shepherd is the enduring image of care and protection. God is our eternal protector, the one who will keep safe each member of his flock.

The Lord is my Shepherd

THEREFORE CAN I LACK NOTHING - Vs 1
It is God’s will that the world will be one of justice and righteousness. The Fair Trade Foundation was established in 1992, it has the following Vision Statement:

Our vision is of a world in which justice and sustainable development are at the heart of trade structures and practices so that everyone, through their work, can maintain a decent and dignified livelihood and develop their full potential.

 
HE WILL MAKE ME LIE DOWN IN GREEN PASTURES - Vs 2
God will provide spiritual food which nourishes our souls.
He will make me lie down in green pastures
AND LEAD ME BESIDE STILL WATERS - Vs 2
The way of God is one of spiritual peace and tranquillity. Jesus said to his followers: ‘Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you.’ John 14 : 27
And lead me beside still waters
HE WILL REFRESH MY SOUL: AND GUIDE ME IN RIGHT PATHWAYS FOR HIS NAME'S SAKE - Vs 3
God intends for his flock to be built up in their spiritual vitality, to follow his guidance is to be whole.
He will refresh my soul
THOUGH I WALK THROUGH THE VAKKEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH I WILL FEAR NO EVIL - Vs 4
The journey of life contains difficult places, with hardships and shadows; however the power of God is stronger than the darkest place.
Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
FOR YOU ARE WITH ME YOUR ROD AND STAFF COMFORT ME - Vs 4
The rod was an iron tipped club that would be carried by shepherds to be used as a weapon against predators. The staff was used by the shepherd to guide and support the sheep on their way. God protects and guides his sheep with a spiritual rod and staff.
For you are with me your rod and staff comfort me
YOU SPREAD A TABLE BEFORE ME IN THE FACE OF THOSE WHO TROUBLE ME - Vs 5
The image of God changes here to that of the divine host in heaven, providing a feast of all good things for his people.
You spread a table before me in the face of those who trouble me
YOU HAVE ANOINTED MY HEAD WITH OIL - Vs 5
The oil of anointing was used for consecration, that is setting aside that person for God; anointing is also used for healing and blessing, as for the sick and at baptism.
You have anointed my head with oil
AND MY CUP WILL BE FULL - Vs 5
God’s spiritual food and healing will overflow to those who follow him.
And my cup will be full
SURELY YOUR GOODNESS AND LOVING KINDNESS WILL FOLLOW ME ALL THE DAYS OF MY LIFE - Vs 6
God will never let go those who put their trust in him.
Surely your goodness and loving kindness will follow me all the days of my life
AND I SHALL DWELL IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD FOR EVER - Vs 6
Jesus said: ‘Let not your hearts be troubled; believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And when I go to prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.’ John 14 : 1 – 3
And I shall dwell in the house of the Lord for ever
   
May Christ the Good Shepherd
enfold you with his love,
fill you with his peace,
and lead you in hope,
to the end of your days.
Amen.
The Good Shepherd