One very big question which remains unanswered is – when will churches be open again? This was briefly discussed at last week’s Standing Committee meeting but it was impossible to answer. Notwithstanding that, the lay members of the SC are preparing a plan which will cover all possible contingencies. There are many aspects to consider, obviously safety, health, social distancing, cleansing regime, helpers and so on. Once the plan is fully complete and agreed it will be presented to the Vicar, who has the final say in this matter. Once the Government and the Archbishop of Canterbury say that churches can reopen, St Mary’s at least will be ready to go.

Today is of course, Ascension Day and a ZOOM service is available distributed by the vicar. It starts at 9:30am.

Quite surprisingly, donations to the North Bristol Foodbank continue to arrive in the church porch in considerable quantities. So if you were thinking of donating some tins or toothpaste etc, just drop it off in the porch. Paul Harrod will deliver it.

Another power cut! Early morning, around, 3:30am on Saturday 16th. Are Western Distribution trying to set a record?

Fortunately, St Mary’s church alarm had been serviced two days earlier and a fault rectified, so the alarm did not go off!

Some people may have noticed that a number of street signs, specifically, Orchard Rise and Church Hill in Olveston and Pump Lane in Old Down, have vanished. These are probably the only remaining metal signs in the parish (all others are plastic). The Parish Council has taken them down for repainting. First they have to be cleansed with caustic soda. They should be back in place in  2 months time. If you know of any other metal ones needing revitalising, please let parish councillor Martin Gibson (616856) know.

One of the interesting side effects of lockdown is how the fall of darkness  changes everything. At the moment whilst the days are still light, people are out and about, mainly walking or cycling and the odd shop is open. Come nightfall EVERYTHING stops. Not a soul to be seen. This is most pronounced in towns like Thornbury – like a ghost town.

A straw poll of vehicles on the M4 motorway shows that there is one lorry for every 4 cars. Thank goodness for our lorry drivers. They keep the country alive and fed. Oh yes, and whilst on “transport” unleaded petrol is down to 99.7p in Morrisons and 99.9p in Tesco in Thornbury. Good times!

Do you remember the 11 puppies which arrived late one night early in the lockdown? Well, all of them survived and 10 have been homed with the bitch’s owner retaining the last one.

Humour:

People are like tea bags – you have to put them in hot water before you know how strong they are.         

God so loved the world that He did NOT send a committee.                                                                                              

How will you spend eternity? Smoking or Non-smoking?                                                                                

Forbidden fruit creates many jams.”