St Michael & All Angels

Sharing God's Love

Not from The Vicarage

September 2020

Last month Sarah started her letter with Good News! this month we need to start with More Good News! This is the message we received from the Bishop’s office two weeks ago.

We are pleased to announce that The Reverend Nicky Harvey, currently Assistant Curate at St Mary’s Hadlow, Kent, and on secondment to the Benefice of Mereworth, Wateringbury and West Peckham, Kent has been appointed to the post of Vicar of Marden. The licensing occasion will be held on 13th October and will comply with government guidelines for social distancing at the time.

We are sure that you would want to join us in welcoming Nicky to her new ministry and home in the village. Unfortunately, we will have to have a more subdued welcome than we might have wished but have assured her that singing and refreshments are our norm. Please see the next magazine for more information regarding 13th October. 

As some of will be aware we have not been able to follow our normal programme for children during the pandemic and therefore Kathy Young, our Youth and Children’s Minister, has been seconded to run the foodbank. She has been doing an excellent job and has joined in this letter to tell you more about it.

The Covid-19 pandemic has been a challenging time for everyone. But as the crisis continues to unfold, some in our community are finding the challenges greater than others. 

The food bank has been working closely with Marden Children’s Centre and the Family Liaison Officer at Marden School to ensure continuity of support for local families, but visitors are also referred from Marden Medical Centre, Maidstone Hub, Marden Parish Council, social workers and Maidstone Mental Health Care team, and what is becoming very apparent, is that although the health crisis seems to be on pause, a financial crisis is starting.

As we have throughout this pandemic, Marden Food Bank supports families and individuals with additional food, hygiene and baby supplies, and whilst we cannot provide everything everyone needs, we hope that what a parcel contains is enough to allow household budgets to stretch a little further - when trying to entertain children at home inevitably means the weekly utility bills  go up and school meals are not available; perhaps Universal Credit payments haven’t come through; perhaps a benefit cap has been imposed; perhaps money needs to be saved to purchase new school uniforms; perhaps furlough has stopped and contracts have been terminated; perhaps for an elderly resident, public transport and online shopping isn’t an option; perhaps the crisis has caused a deterioration in mental health….

For this reason, the food bank will continue to stay open and this is only possible because of you, our incredible community, volunteering and donating. This Wednesday, every single individual that came along to the food bank thanked us, and we take this opportunity to thank you.

Kathy Food Bank, Carol and Graham Churchwardens