From the parish newsletter, Sunday 29 March:
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity.
With these words Charles Dickens opens his novel about the French revolution, A Tale of Two Cities. The passage seems very appropriate for the times through which we are now living.
Only a week ago people were still panic-buying. The empty shelves at our local supermarket looked as if the shop had been visited by looters, rather than shoppers! More disturbing was the abuse the staff received, when they tried to limit the amount people bought; but this is only one side of the coin.
More than 500,000 people have volunteered to help the NHS. Numerous people have rung the vicarage offering to shop for those self-isolating. On the last occasion Fr Jeff was able to go to the bank, an elderly lady was telling the cashier that she was on her own and worried. The cashier gave the lady her phone number telling her to ring if she had problems. There is much human kindness in our country.
Knowsley Council have asked us to circulate the phone number for Knowsley Community Support and Volunteer Line. It is: 0880 730 043. The hours are Monday to Friday 9am-5pm and weekends 10am-2pm.
The COVID-19 virus will not last forever. The challenge then will be how we change our behaviour, our politics and our attitude to the planet and one another. A part of our responsibility will be to ensure that our Christian faith informs our actions, enabling us to love our neighbours as ourselves.
The Reverend John Taylor
Vicar of Prescot