Archive for July, 2010

Joint Service for Crosspool Festival

Friday, July 23rd, 2010

This year was the first ever Crosspool Festival, and the organisers asked the churches in Crosspool to hold a joint service to close the festival.  More than a  hundred people came to Lydgate Green on Sunday 11th July to take part in the service which was led by myself and the Rev. Frances Ecclestone, Priest-in charge of St. Columbas Church.  There was a reading from Stephen Hill Methodist Church and an address by Inderjit Bhogal who is the Chief Executive of the Yorkshire Faiths Forum and a regular contributor to the media.

As luck (or someone else!) would have it the day’s lectionary reading was the parable of the Good Samaritan – which asks and answers the question ‘who is my neighbour?’ This fitted well with a celebration of the opportunities for coming together as a community that was a feature of all the activities of the festival, and was developed by Reverend Bhogal in his address.

Inderjit suggested that nowadays the part of the Samaritan in the parable (who were the most despised people when the parable was first told) could be taken by Asylum Seekers. He talked with pride about how Sheffield had become a ‘City of Sanctuary’ and explained how as part of this organisations throughout the city had looked at ways of making Asylum Seekers more welcome. Finally he challenged us to do the same in our churches, places of works and other voluntary societies.

Perhaps the biggest hit of the day was the Chapeltown Silver Prize Band who played before and after the service and accompanied the hymns. They sounded superb and were a big hit with everyone – and we were even more grateful to them because they stepped in at the last moment after another brass band were suddenly unable to make it.

I’m hoping there will be photos of the day to attach to this post shortly!