28 Apr 11

Aren't there better things to do than prayer?
I can still remember the question that seemed to be constantly put to me as a teenager.
"If you could either help someone in need or pray what would you do?"
If I said "I would pray" then I would look selfish.
If I said "I would help someone" then the reply would be " Why don't you stop praying and spend all your time helping people?"
Of course a lot of the time the choice is not between helping people and praying but between spending more time in prayer or more time watching the tele.
But if you do spend most of your time helping people, why waste time praying?
But is it such a waste?
For me - and I can not speak for others - praying really does help. After all helping people is not about the quantity of time I spend helping but the quality and sensitivity of my care. I know I get things wrong. I know I do better when I take time to pray.
But prayer is not just about helping me to help others. It's about being part of something incredibly special. If I really believe that in prayer I can talk to and listen to the creative force behind the whole universe then this is really awesome. I can not excuse myself by saying "I do not have the time".
And what is true of me, and of all us individually, is true of churches. We can get so busy we forget to pray. How wrong can you get!
We are planning as a Church to put prayer where it belongs - well and truly at the forefront of Church life.
Join us in prayer as we seek to spend more time talking to and listening  to God.
There could hardly be anything more important.  
Your friend and Vicar,

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Rev. John Langlands

 It is with great pleasure that I would like to welcome you to St Laurence.  Frances, my wife, and I have received a very warm welcome ourselves, so you will not be disappointed when you visit St Laurence.  I am also the Curate of the other churches in Ansley and Arley – St John’s, St Michael’s and St Wilfrid’s.

Being in a rural and farming area in the north part of Coventry Diocese is like coming home for us.  A number of years ago I pastored a church in rural Norfolk which was mainly surrounded by arable farms with some pigs and chickens.  The strong sense of community life was something very special.  This should be particularly valued in these days when many folk live such individual, separate and often lonely lives. 

We have just had hot off the press a visiting card which I hope reflects what our church stands for: ‘You will not walk alone.  Together we are with you on life’s journey’.  Over these next weeks, months and years, I hope we can get to know you better and that you will find Frances and myself not just ‘churchy’ people but friends as well, who enjoy life and plenty of laughter!