February 14th 2021


It’s hard to believe that this time last year we were converting the Abbey Church into a ‘pop-up’ restaurant for couples to celebrate Valentines Day in the unique setting of the church. That seems so long ago now with so much having happened this last year.

Even during this latest period of forced lock down, our lives have continued to be filled with the demands of work and family that little time is left to us to cultivate the garden of our soul. In our preoccupation with the ceaseless business of life, our spirit, if not completely forgotten, is often sadly neglected. When we do find the time to look at ourselves honestly, we soon discover that the spirit of the world has gradually and imperceptibly eaten away at our good intentions; we have become shopworn by the cares and self-centered spirit of the world.

Fortunately for us, the church recognized from its earliest days that we would need regular periods of reflection and renewed effort if we were to free ourselves from the relentless grip of worldly cares, to once again imitate the example of Christ and reflect it in our lives. It did so by developing the season of Lent, a season which invites us to renew our concentration on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving which lie at the very heart of Christian living.

Lent begins this Wednesday. Sadly, due to current restrictions, there will not be a service in church with the imposition of ashes prohibited this year from all churches.  Instead there will be an Online Worship which will be available to view from 11:00am on Ash Wednesday on our Youtube Chanel:


This Sunday we will once again live stream the 10:00am Parish Communion via our Facebook Page which will be followed by  Zoom Coffee and natter.

Join Zoom Meeting – contact vicar@elstow-abbey.org.uk  for details.

We are also  still offering a Virtual Zoom Sunday school each week at 11:00am.  This is available to anybody who might like to join. Send me an email and I’ll arrange for invite and pass code to be sent.


The wisdom of the ages invites us once again this Lent to this marvelous opportunity to find God in our lives; let us take care that we do not waste it.


Happy Lent!


Rev’d Fr. Paul Messam

Priest-in-charge of the Elstow Abbey and Elstow Team.

Assistant Area Dean of Bedford

Abbey Vicarage,
Church End,
Bedford   MK42 9XT

01234 261477