Heathfield, Punnetts Town, Broad Oak

HEATHFIELD CHAPEL: During the month of July the Heathfield Chapel leadership team invite you to their services. On July 1 at 11am we have Paul Davies from the Albanian Evangelical Mission. He will also be speaking at the late afternoon service at 4pm (not 6.30pm). The service on July 8 at 11am (to include communion) is to be led by Roger Lumley from Tunbridge Wells. The service on July 15 at 11am is to be conducted by Pat Reigh from Bexhill. Services in the evenings from July 8 are at 6.30pm and led by Paul Lewis from Eastbourne.

HISTORY SOCIETY: The intriguing title of Peter Harrison’s talk The Surgeon’s Cat and the Apothecary’s Rose, just cried out for an explanation and the link became clear as the evening unfolded. The Apothecary’s Rose is the fragrant and beautiful Rosa Gallicia Officinalis. First known in 7th century Persia, it is thought to have been brought to England by the Crusaders. The early Christians believed that the deep red petals symbolised the blood of Christ. They dried and rolled them into balls which they then threaded to make rosaries. During the Wars of the Roses the Lancastrians adopted the Rosa Gallicia as their symbol while the Yorkists opted for the Rosa Alba, the white rose. The Rosa Gallicia also has medicinal properties and so it was planted outside apothecary’s shops. Thus we discovered the first link to the title. Our speaker’s father, Richard Harrison, was a surgeon and he planted the rose in his garden. But what was the surgeon’s cat? It turned out to be a sweet black and white cat called Hazy which lived with the Harrison family. So the link in the title became clear, it was our speaker’s father Richard Harrison. Richard Harrison was an eminent orthopaedic surgeon working with the RAF in Germany in the immediate post war years. Not only was he a surgeon but he was also a keen photographer and chronicled in words and pictures his time in Luneburg in 1947. When he died in 2009 the pictures and diary were discovered in his study and painstakingly scanned, collated and annotated by his son. To his surprise Peter discovered that he had a treasure trove. It is the only existing record of life in post war Germany. 1947 was the dreadful winter named The Hungry Winter during which the German people died from cold and starvation. Richard Harrison’s work has been turned into a book entitled The Medical Officer’s Diary 1947. The people of Luneburg were very interested to see the book and to recreate the pictures in modern Luneburg. The book is available to purchase and all money goes to the RAF Benevolent Fund. And so the rose, the cat and the surgeon all came together in an interesting and well illustrated talk.

This brings to a close our programme for this year. Our new season will open on Thursday September 20 at 7.30pm in the Community Centre when James Gardner will tell us all about The Balcombe Tunnel Murder. Meanwhile the members are reminded that the summer outing to the Weald and Downland Living Museum is on August 5 and there are still a few places left on the coach. Contact Chris on 01435 860734 if you would like to join us.

SPACE FOR PRAYER: At All Saints Church, Old Heathfield until Sunday July 8. All Saints’ Church will be open during the daytime, as usual, and inside you will find an Arts and Crafts Exhibition created by children from ASSR Church of England Primary School, Old Heathfield on the theme of Prayer and a number of Interactive Spaces which focus on different Aspects of Prayer. Outside of the church, there will be a thought provoking Prayer Walk and a unique Prayer Labyrinth, with signboards explaining how they might be used. If you have a few minutes or more, do go and explore. For more information contact Rev’d Mitch (telephone 01435 862744) or Dr Sue Greener (telephone 01435 830451). Part of the Diocese of Sussex Year of Prayer for 2018.

CHURCH SERVICES: Heathfield Benefice Church Service’s. Sunday, All Saints’Old Heathfield, 8am Holy Communion (BCP); St George’s Broad Oak, 9am Morning Worship; St Richard’s, 10.30am Holy Communion www.strichardheathfield.org.uk www.allsaintsheathfield.org.uk

FOOD BANK: Items are urgently needed. They have plenty of beans and soups but other supplies are very low. If you are able to donate an extra item, it will be gratefully received. There are boxes for donations every Sunday in all three churches.