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eNews - February 2021

A Lent message from Canon Nikki Arthy 

This is not a Lent in which we are being asked to give things up for we have given up so much this past year. This is a Lent when we are invited to draw closer to God, reflecting on faith, hope and love as we celebrate a shaft of light, a glimmer of hope or a moment of joy in our journey to Easter. The crucified Christ asks the question: ‘Guess how much I love you?’ He extends his arms and responds: ‘This much.’

From 1 February, the Archbishops invite the nation to pause, pray and remember at 6pm each day the more than 100,000 people across the UK who have died after contracting Covid-19, ’known to God and cherished by God.’  Further information www.churchofengland.org
 
Gracious God, as we remember before you the thousands who have died, surround us and all who mourn with your strong compassion. Be gentle with us in our grief, protect us from despair, and give us grace to persevere and face the future with hope in Jesus Christ our risen Lord. Amen.

Faith 

Ash Wednesday 17 February

The Eucharist will be live-streamed from the Cathedral at 4.30pm www.gloucestercathedral.org.uk



There are Virtual Services  via zoom weekly in the parish. For more information please visit  http://www.swithunandmary.org.uk.  If you need support in the meantime and would like to speak to somebody, please get in touch via mail@discoverdecrypt.org.uk.

Candles in the Dark: Faith, Hope and love in a time of pandemic by Rowan Williams


You are invited to join a Lent group gathering via Zoom to discuss meditations written by the former Archbishop of Canterbury for the congregation of his parish church. The publicity says: ‘Candles in the Dark will be welcomed by all who are looking for light in these dark times. Written with warmth and compassion, it will challenge you, nourish you and leave you with fresh resources for faith to guide you through a still uncertain future.’

Wednesdays 24 February, 3, 10, 17, 24 March 7.30-8.30pm led by Canon Sandra Millar. Contact Sandra for the Zoom link revdocsand@gmail.com

Thursdays 25 February, 4, 11, 18, 25 March 11am-12noon led by Canon Nikki Arthy. Contact Nikki for the Zoom link nikkiarthy@b nternet.com


Through the Day with Mary: A Lenten Quiet Day


Give yourself some time for reflection this Lent. Join us on  Saturday 6th March for a Quiet Day on zoom led by The Revd Canon Dr Sandra Millar, Head of Welcome and Life Events for the Church of England.  This day will focus on four moments in the life of Mary, Mother of Jesus, to help us think about our own journey of faith during Lent in the light of God’s great love for us.  There will be short sessions of input on zoom  with  lots of time in your own space for reflection, creative prayer and activities, for which suggestions will be given.   Come whether you long to pray or have prayed for a lifetime – all are welcome.  Please reserve your place by booking online https://discoverdecrypt.org.uk/event/through-the-day-with-mary-2/.
 
Story: History and Heritage News

Roman Gloucester comes to light at Discover DeCrypt: 'most important discovery in decades.'

We are very excited to share news of one of the biggest surprises of the regeneration work here at Discover DeCrypt in 2019. During groundworks at the front of the church in Southgate Street two large fragments of stone were spotted by archaeologists from Avon Archaeology, who were monitoring the work.

One of the fragments is believed to have been part of an important building in central Roman Gloucester and the other a piece of a stone altar. Both show exceptionally high quality carving. They are made from Cotswold limestone and likely to have been quarried in the Painswick area.

The first fragment (above) proved to be part of a cornice, a projecting decorative band running along the external face of a building. It is decorated with beautiful curling leaf and perhaps floral designs, with the workmanship considered to be of exceptionally high quality. It measures 90 cms by  40 cms and appears to be broken, which means the original stone was even larger and formed part of a very sizeable Roman building, possibly a temple or the forum basilica (Roman town hall).

The second fragment (below) is the upper part of a Roman altar. While damaged, it has the typical shape of such altars (a raised central ‘bump’ with carved scroll-like ornaments on either side). Sadly the front has been broken off ­­making it impossible to see any inscriptions; the back is roughly finished suggesting that it would have stood flush with a wall.

Andrew Armstrong, Archaeologist at Gloucester City Council, said: “These are the most important fragments of Roman stonework to be found in Gloucester for some decades and the fact that they were found so close to the city centre means they may have been associated with the Roman forum, a public space in the centre of the Roman city,  or large public buildings around the forum.”

The Basilica and the Forum were not only the administrative centre for a Roman city but also served as a religious centre. According to expert Martin Henig, a major Colonia such as Glevum  (Roman Gloucester), would have had a Capitolium, a temple dedicated to Iupiter Optimus Maximus, either within the forum area or adjacent to it. Although the cornice might have ornamented the basilica it might equally well have come from such a temple. It is likely that the very well cut (and presumably inscribed) altar came either from such a temple or perhaps the aedes, the shrine within the basilica, which also housed the room where the city council (curia) met and the law courts.

A conservation programme is now set to begin backed by the City Council, Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society and Discover DeCrypt. The stones will eventually be displayed at Discover DeCrypt.

Life: Upcoming events and Activities  

Discover DeCrypt Online Shop - coming soon

We are delighted to be taking our shop online this month. A selection of items will soon be available to purchase via the website.  This will include local interest books, handmade wooden items by Ron Aston, the Discover DeCrypt jigsaw, and our very special stone angel, by Cat's Eye Carving.  

If there are other items you have seen in our shop and would like to purchase, please do get in touch. We are always happy to package something up and send it!
 
 
Family 'Design an Easter Card' Competition!
 
Entry in the 2019 Art and RE Competition, Diocese of Gloucester

 

We are inviting all artists and crafters out there to design an Easter card for us.  You can be as creative as you like - use paint, crayons, collage, pens or anything else you choose. You could even make an Easter sculpture, paint an egg or use natural materials and assemble something outside. Whatever you do, make sure it expresses how you feel about Easter and write a few lines to tell us about it.  Please take a photograph of your creation and send it to us, with your name and age (if under 18), at: mail@discoverdecrypt.org.uk

Our favourite submissions will be posted on our website and turned into cards for next Easter. There will be a small prize for each design we use. The deadline for submissions is 11.59pm on Friday 26 March 2021.

Exhibitions 2021: Luba Arnold Larnie

One of the many things we look forward to when lockdown ends, is the chance to display art in the church and schoolroom again.  Some of you will have been lucky enough to visit last year during the exhibition of paintings by local artist, Luba Arnold Larnie.  We are glad to say that, subject to lockdown restrictions, we will be displaying more of her work this May.

Luba has won a number of awards in Open Art competitions and her work has regularly appeared in exhibitions in Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Devon and St.Ives in Cornwall. For more information please email us mail@discoverdecrypt.org.uk

Luba Arnold Larnie and TV personality Doctor Janina Ramirez, one of the judges at an award ceremony for the Art In The City Competition in Gloucester.

Looking forward to Spring in the churchyard

Bulbs and shoots are beginning to push their way up despite the snow and rain. If you are taking your lockdown exercise in Gloucester, do walk through and enjoy the signs of spring.
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eNews February 2021
 

A Lent Message
from Canon Nikki Arthy


This is not a Lent in which we are being asked to give things up for we have given up so much this past year. This is a Lent when we are invited to draw closer to God, reflecting on faith, hope and love as we celebrate a shaft of light, a glimmer of hope or a moment of joy in our journey to Easter. The crucified Christ asks the question: ‘Guess how much I love you?’ He extends his arms and responds: ‘This much.’

From 1 February, the Archbishops invite the nation to pause, pray and remember at 6pm each day the more than 100,000 people across the UK who have died after contracting Covid-19, ’known to God and cherished by God.’  Further information www.churchofengland.org
 
Gracious God, as we remember before you the thousands who have died, surround us and all who mourn with your strong compassion. Be gentle with us in our grief, protect us from despair, and give us grace to persevere and face the future with hope in Jesus Christ our risen Lord. Amen.

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