Category Archives: Llansadwrn Church

Virtual Easter Experience

Eglwys Llansadwrn church Carmarthenshire Sir Gar

EASTER EXPERIENCE

Welcome to the electronic version of the Easter Experience and visit in your imagination the important events in the Easter story. At each point you will find a simple retelling (with a Bible reference) and some visual prompts. You will also find an invitation to interact with the story and reflect upon it at each stage:

  • Hopes and Dreams (Palm Sunday)
  • Servant King (Maundy Thursday)
  • Remember Me (Last Supper)
  • Alone (Garden of Gethsemane)
  • Sharing Our Sorrows (Good Friday)
  • Resurrection (Easter Day)

You might like to start your virtual journey by reading the following prayer by Saint Teresa of Avila:

Christ has no body now on earth but yours:
Yours are the only hands with which he can do his work,
Yours are the only feet with which he can go about the world,
Yours are the only eyes through which his compassion
can shine forth upon a troubled world.
Christ has no body now on earth but yours.

The Story of Easter retold for children and families

Easter is a very special time of year. It is when Christians remember what happened to Jesus before he died and what happened afterwards.

On Palm Sunday Jesus and his friends made their way to the great city of Jerusalem. They were going there to celebrate Passover. At Passover, even today, the Jewish people remember how God set them free when they were slaves in Egypt.

As Jesus rode into Jerusalem on the back of a young donkey, the ordinary people went wild. They threw their cloaks into the road to make a royal pathway for Jesus; they waved palm branches to welcome him and shouted: ‘God bless the king who comes in the name of the Lord.’

But some of their leaders weren’t so happy. ‘This Jesus is a troublemaker,’ they said. ‘We need a plan to get rid of him.’

Jesus and his friends got everything ready for the Passover meal. When they were all together, Jesus took a bowl of water and a towel. Then he knelt down and washed his disciples’ feet. Then he dried them.

‘Why are you doing this?’ one of them asked.
‘I am being your servant,’ said Jesus. ‘I want you to serve one other, just as I am serving you.’

Then Jesus broke some bread. He gave each one of them a piece and said: ‘When you eat bread like this, I want you to remember me.’

Then he poured out some wine, and said: ‘When you drink wine like this, I want you to remember me.’
Then they all sang the special Passover hymn. And they went out to a garden called Gethsemane where olive trees grew. It was a place they knew well and it was very peaceful there. Jesus told his friends to keep watch while he went away by himself to pray.

During the night soldiers came to arrest him. They took him for questioning to the Temple leaders. People came and told lies about him. They said that he deserved to die. Some of them made fun of Jesus.

Next day, Friday, he was taken to the Roman Governor, Pontius Pilate. Pilate knew that Jesus was a good man but he gave in to the crowds who wanted Jesus to be put to death. So the soldiers took him away and nailed him to a cross.

When Jesus died, a friend took his body to a beautiful garden, and laid him in a tomb cut out of the rock.

The next day was Saturday, when nobody was allowed to do any work. So it was Sunday before some of Jesus’ women friends came with special oils and spices for his body. But when they got to the tomb, the tomb was empty.

An angel told them that Jesus wasn’t there; he was alive.

Christians believe that Jesus rose from the dead at Easter and is still alive today. That is why Easter is such a happy time.

HOPES AND DREAMS (stones to hold; a pathway strewn with palms leading to a simple wooden cross)

When Jesus came into the great city of Jerusalem, the crowds were excited and restless. Many had heard of Jesus’s teaching and miracles. They longed for a leader who would help them drive the Romans from their land so that they could live in peace and prosperity. As Jesus rode through the city gates on a young donkey the people cheered and praised God: ‘Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord.’ As people threw their cloaks and palm leaves onto the ground to pave the way for Jesus, their hearts were full of hope. Some of the religious leaders grumbled at Jesus but he told them that even if the crowds were silent, the very stones would cry out.
(Matthew 21.1-10)

Part of being human is to hope, and to dream. Some of our hopes and dreams are personal, but others are more public. At the time of Jesus, Palestine was ruled by the Romans. The people dreamed of overthrowing their Roman conquerors. They were hoping for a Messiah, a leader who would set them free.

In your imagination . . .

Choose a stone and hold it in your hand. Let it represent the hope or dream you hold most dear. Then take it and place it with the other stones by the cross at the end of the road.

SERVANT KING (a pitcher and a bowl of water, towels and cushions)

Jesus took off his outer clothing and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel . . . When he had finished, he put on his outer clothes and returned to his place. ‘Do you understand what I have done for you?’ he asked them. ‘You call me “teacher and Lord”, and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and teacher, have washed your feet, you should also wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.’

(John 13.3-5, 12-15)

Jesus lived in a hot, dry land. Most people travelled from place to place on foot. It was the custom to welcome visitors by washing their feet in cool, clean water. Normally a household servant did this.

Think about . . .

how God might be calling you to serve others

In your imagination . . .

Ask God to help you serve others in a special way this Easter. Now dip your fingers into the water and make the sign of the cross on the palm of each hand.

REMEMBER ME (a table, a candle, some bread, some wine)

On the night before he died Jesus had supper with his friends. He took some bread. He thanked God for it and broke it. Jesus gave the bread to each of his disciples and said: ‘Take, eat, this is my body which is given for you. Do this to remember me.’

(Matthew 26.26)

Most of us have objects we treasure which help us to remember important times in our lives. When Christians meet together, we often share bread and wine to remember the last meal that Jesus had with his friends before he died.

In your imagination . . .

Please sit and light a candle. Now imagine Jesus blessing the loaf and giving you a piece of it. Imagine him blessing the cup of wine and giving it to you to drink. Think of the love Jesus had for his friends and for the world.

ALONE (green plants, holding crosses*, a tray of sand)

I have called you by name, you are mine.

(Isaiah 43.1)

I have loved you with an everlasting love.

(Jeremiah 31.3a)

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
(John 14.27)

Jesus knew that soon the soldiers would come to arrest him, and he would be sentenced to death. He went with his friends to a garden called Gethsemane. There he asked them to keep watch for him while he prayed to God for help. But his friends were tired and they fell asleep. In the darkness Jesus felt very alone. Even so, he trusted himself to God’s care.

In your imagination . . .

Take one of the holding crosses and hold it in your hand. Think of a time when you were lonely or afraid. Now re-read the verses from the Bible, then place the cross gently in the tray of sand.

*Holding crosses are usually made of olive wood in the Holy Land. They are shaped to fit into the palm of your hand and give great comfort in times of stress.
SHARING OUR SORROWS (large cross draped with red ribbons streaming down, small crosses each with a different group to pray for: for, such as NHS staff and Coronavirus patients)

Soldiers led Jesus outside the walls of Jerusalem to Golgotha, the place of the skull. A crown of thorns had been placed on his head. The soldiers nailed him to the cross and fastened a notice to it: ‘Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews’. While they waited for Jesus to die, the soldiers cast dice to see which of them would have Jesus’s robe for themselves. When he became thirsty, the soldiers offered him a sponge soaked in vinegar.

At three o’clock Jesus died.

(Matthew 27.27-50)

The Cross reminds Christians of the death of Jesus, but because he rose again it has become a sign of hope for anyone who is suffering.

In your imagination . . .

Please say a prayer for someone who is suffering today. Either imagine taking hold of one of the ribbons on the Cross and ask God to help the person you have chosen, or take one of the small crosses and pray for the person or situation on the label. You don’t need to use many words, just: ‘Dear God, please help . . .’

RESURRECTION (pop-up tent veiled, white sheets and cloths inside)

After the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene and two other women set out at dawn to visit the tomb where Jesus had been laid. As they reached the entrance, they were startled by the dazzling figure of an angel. The angel said, ‘Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here. He has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.’

(Mark 16.1-6)

Like the women, Christians look into the empty tomb to remember that the son of God was crucified, but, after three days, rose from the dead. We believe that this is the greatest miracle the world has ever known. It is why churches often create an empty tomb or make an Easter garden. It is why we celebrate Easter.

Think about:

how the women felt when they heard the angel’s words
what God might be saying to you today.

In your imagination . . .

Choose one word to describe the miracle of the empty tomb. Treasure the word in your heart this Easter.

Services Cancelled

Eglwys Llansadwrn church Carmarthenshire Sir Gar

All church services have been cancelled until further notice, but please feel welcome to enter the church, anytime you wish, for quiet thought or meditation. There are some copies of prayer sheets there, printed for use at this difficult time – feel free to help yourself but do remember to take them home with you.

As with all activities at this time, please take all sensible precautions: keeping the recommended distance from others, and maintaining hand hygiene by frequent hand washing, or by using gel if this is not practical.

Please do not leave home if you have any symptoms, e.g., continuous cough or temperature. If you begin to feel unwell whilst in church, then please return home immediately.

Please join us, and people across the nation, in an act of prayer and hope this Sunday, the 22nd March, by lighting a candle in your window at 7pm. This will act as a visible symbol of the Light of Life, and of our prayerful hope for the days ahead.

Covid 19 and Llansadwrn

Llansadwrn

After much discussion and weighing the pros and cons, it has been decided to discontinue many of our indoor events for the time being – not an easy decision but given the circumstances arguably it is one to make earlier, rather than later. It is a very difficult time with so much uncertainty – and trying to do the right thing, balancing normality with good sense about the risk, is not without its problems: there is no blue print to guide us!

Meantime, a list is being compiled of anyone who would welcome an occasional phone call to make sure they are still ok / need anything / shopping / or whatever: if you think of anyone and you have their permission for their name and contact details to be shared, please let Jane Shaw or Vicar Viv know: similarly the names of anyone free, willing and able themselves to offer giving their support in this way…

Of course many already have local friends / family / neighbours who mutually support one another all the time, which is perfect – but there are some, especially if they are living on their own, in the vulnerable category and without family nearby, who could fall through the net if they catch the virus and self-isolate, without anybody else knowing they are unwell. Vicar Viv Sayer 01550 777200

To ensure that people do not end up isolated we are also organising a regular outdoor walk around the village, and we will also be doing work in the community garden to prevent isolation.

Weather permitting next Saturday morning (21st) we intend to have a community walk in the morning, meeting at the Reading Room at 10am and then a community garden in the afternoon from around 2pm. We have habitats to make and dogwood cuttings to plant. Keep an eye on the events page for updates and new opportunities for meeting up and not hugging.

As a community we commit to keep each other safe whilst not getting isolated. If you are feeling isolated or anxious you are surrounded by a loving community – please ask for help.

Never Forget, an Exhibition in Llansadwrn

Benjamin Trevor Davies, Gunner, 123915,Royal Garrison Artillery - The Great War, 1914-1918

This year saw the centenary of the end of that awful war that promised no others. There is now an exhibition at Llansadwrn Church of the men and boys lost in that terrible war and the one that followed.

Every town and village lost young men and boys in the horrors of that time and Llansadwrn was no different. Young men were recruited and sent out into the trenches from across the village. In all the two wars saw twenty young men lost from Llansadwrn.

The exhibition remembers all twenty young men and tells their stories, we tell three of their stories here.

Benjamin Trevor Davies, Gunner, 123915, Royal Garrison Artillery – The Great War, 1914-1918

Benjamin was the son of Daniel and Esther Davies, of Pantyrhendre, Llansadwrn. He resided at Manchester House, Caio prior to the war, where he worked as a grocer.

Benjamin enlisted at Llandovery on 21 October 1916 into the Royal Garrison Artillery.

On 17 April 1917 he landed in France, where he entrained for Marseilles.

Benjamin then sailed to Egypt before joining the 304th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery, which was part of the XCV Heavy Artillery Group.

Benjamin fought in the Mesopotamian theatre, where he was wounded, and he sadly died of Meningitis following wounds on 5 March 1918, aged only 21. He is buried at Ramleh War Cemetery, Israel.

Benjamin Trevor Davies, Gunner, 123915,Royal Garrison Artillery - The Great War, 1914-1918

Benjamin Trevor Davies, Gunner

Benjamin Trevor Davies, Gunner, 123915,Royal Garrison Artillery - The Great War, 1914-1918

Benjamin Trevor Davies’s grave

Benjamin Wright, Private, 11479, Welsh Regiment – The Great War, 1914-1918

Benjamin was born at London, but resided at Pwllyfan, Llanwrda prior to the war, and worked as a Grocer’s Haulier for David Griffiths, London House, Llansadwrn.

He also worked as a Gardener for Mr Hunter at Abermarlais. He became the first man from the district to enlist, having enlisted at the outbreak of war at Carmarthen into the 2nd Battalion, Welsh Regiment, which landed in France on 13 August 1914 as part of 3 Brigade, 1st Division.

The Division fought at the Battle of Mons, and then during the epic retreat to the Marne, where they helped stop the German Advance before pushing them back to the Aisne. They were then rushed to Ypres, and took part in First Ypres, where the German advance across Flanders was stopped, although at great cost.

After a hard first winter in Flanders, the Division fought at the Battle of Aubers in May 1915 then moved to Loos, and took part in the Battle of Loos throughout September and October that year.

In 1916 they fought on the Somme, where Benjamin was killed in action on 23 August 1916, aged 27. He is buried in Flatiron Copse Cemetery, Mametz, France.

Benjamin Wright, Private, 11479, Welsh Regiment

Benjamin Wright, Private,

Grave of Benjamin Wright, Private, 11479, Welsh Regiment

Grave of Benjamin Wright, Private

Thomas Vicars Hunter, Captain, Royal Air Force – The Great War, 1914-1918

Thomas was born in London on 2 April 1897, the son of Henry Charles Vicars Hunter, J.P., and the Hon. Mrs. Florence Edith Hunter, of Abermarlais, Llansadwrn.

Thomas was educated at Ladycross and Eton, which he left early at the age of 17 for a Commission at Sandhurst, joining the 5th Battalion, the Rifle Brigade.

Soon after being gazetted, he broke his leg in a motorcycle accident, which necessitated the amputation of his badly injured leg. This didn’t stop him though, as he returned to service in October 1916, but quickly discovered that he was hampered by the loss of his leg, and so he volunteered for the Royal Flying Corps in February 1917.

He gained his wings in May, and served in France flying scouts, with 66 Squadron. Thomas was gazetted Flight Commander in September, and in November 1917 was posted to Italy with his Squadron.

Sadly Thomas was Killed in Action there on 5 December 1917, aged just 20, and is buried at Carmignano Di Brenta Communal Cemetery, Italy.

Thomas Vicars Hunter, Captain, Royal Air Force

Thomas Vicars Hunter, Captain, Royal Air Force