I always feel that, with the change of temperature and clocks, October is the beginning of autumn. The central heating is on, the radiators are bled of the air they acquired over the summer (at least at the Rectory!), the curtains are drawn to keep the dark out and the heat in and the clocks change at the end of the month.
Each season has a different mood to it depending on memories and associations that are particular to each of us – my strongest memory of October is a bicycle ride during half term along the coast in Arbroath, Scotland with my wife and children – the sun shone, the sky was blue, the days were warm, the nights cold and the views out over the sea breathtaking. It is a wonderfully invigorating image for me to conjure up against any autumn blues! I hope you may have equally strong ones to draw on in the coming month – because inevitably October leads into November!!
Either way there are some good events to enjoy this month! This October is something of a ‘Palestinian season’ – full of good tastes and smells, some strong, inviting music of the Middle East to bolster the spirits and important causes to support.
We begin with ‘A Flavour of Palestine’. This is an evening of music, dance and food with entertainment from musicians RAAST using traditional and contemporary Arabic instruments, Dabke dancing, Palestinian food, Fairtrade Palestinian produce, scarves and much more! The date is Saturday 5 October, 5pm onwards, in the Hall. Tickets with suggested donation of £5 at the door. To reserve, contact email@example.com The evening is in support of our Harvest Appeal.
The next day is ‘Harvest Thanksgiving Sunday’, 6 October. We shall be receiving gifts throughout the day at Church for Asylum Welcome – essential, non-perishable food items, cooking oil, sugar, long life milk (NOT soup or baked beans please!), toiletries & washing-powder. The first service at Church is Holy Communion at 8am followed by a Family Service at 11am. Then at 12noon there is a Bring & Share Lunch in the Hall with Palestinian food (recipes & sign up sheet are all available at the back of Church). The day will conclude with Evensong at 6.30pm.
A week later on Sunday 13 October in the afternoon, 4-5.30pm in the Hall comes a concert ‘Enchantment’ by Oxford Maqam Ensemble with music of the Middle East and Eastern Mediterranean. We are invited to experience enchanting melodies and exuberant rhythms plus delicious ‘mezze’, Middle Eastern snacks and refreshments also available to enjoy. Tickets, suggested donation of £6 available from Iffley Shop, remainder at the door. This afternoon is in support of ABCD, a Palestinian Charity for Children with Disabilities (look on page 6 of the August magazine where there are details of this very valuable ‘Mission of the Month’).
Finally on Sunday 27 October at 11.30am in the Hall there will be a talk about our Harvest Appeal. A leaflet is included in this magazine with details of our Appeal, which for the second year running is ‘The Olive Tree Campaign: keep hope alive in Palestine’. We have set as our target 750 trees @ £14 each – a goal of £10,500.
Please come and support these enjoyable events and give as generously as you are able!