It is part of the ministry of the parish, and certainly a privilege, to welcome parish groups of The Society, mostly from difficult, urban parishes during the summer months: we forget how beautiful it is round here.
It has been a good summer with various groups coming for a Mass or Sprinkling or both, most notably the re-formed Church Lads and Girls Brigade from St John’s, Belle Isle, Leeds (they camped across the road); and Mass and a good lunch for SSC at Broughton back in July.
Today, it was the Society of Mary, its active North-West Ward: Mass, Angelus, Sprinkling, picnic lunch, a short reflection on prayer, Benediction. With visiting clergy leading the different parts: the parish was hosting an event rather than putting it on.
And there are already plans to return for something similar with the Society in May 2018. Small rural churches have a valuable ministry, even if (and probably rightly) the emphasis is now on urban communities.