Week 29: Fred Ireland

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Dear Friends

Week twenty nine. Before I came to this Circuit in 2015, I lived in Thame and looked after the LEP there. But I also had churches in Cuddington, Haddenham and Chinnor. So it was with great sadness that I learnt of the tragic death of a family from Chinnor on the A40 a few days ago. Mother Zoe and three of her children Phoebe, Simeon and Amelia tragically died, whilst her husband Josh and their eighteen month daughter were critically injured.

They were members at Chinnor Community Church, a fellowship I have preached in a number of times. My heart goes out to the Powell family and all the community at Chinnor at this difficult time.

But those of you who have read my articles over the last four years or who have listened to me in church will recall that I have repeatedly spoken of my concerns about the A40. It is dangerous, congested and that there appears to be an inability to address the problems that this road poses to us all. I recall shortly after we arrived in Carteron there was a major accident on the A40 in fog on the dual carriageway just past the town. Lives were lost then too.

And if you have an appointment at the JR and you use the A40, you will know you have to allow extra time because of the Barnardgate, Eynsham and Wolvercote "pinch points." Having been in queuing traffic on both East and Westard directions on more times than I care to recall, I just wonder what cost this congestion poses to businesses in the County every day.

Surely the tragic deaths of Zoe, Phoebe, Simeon and Amelia should be the final call for our politicians and the Highways Agency to address this lethal road for the good of all its users. I urge you to write to your MP and plead that this road's hazards and flaws be addressed.

If we can find £100 Billion to build HS2 to cut 30 minutes off a journey from London to Birmingham, with all the environmental damage that is causing, surely we can find the resources to fix this disgraceful arterial route through the County.

Please remember Josh, his daughter, the good folks at Chinnor Community Church and the wider community at Chinnor in your thoughts and prayers at this tragic time.


With kindest Regards.


This week's Devotional

Read: Matthew 22: 34-46(Lectionary reading)

Read: StF 626

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
Your perfect love is casting out fear
And even when I'm caught in the middle of the storms of this life
I won't turn back
I know you are near

And I will fear no evil
For my God is with me
And if my God is with me
Whom then shall I fear?
Whom then shall I fear?


Oh no, You never let go
Through the calm and through the storm
Oh no, You never let go
In every high and every low
Oh no, You never let go
Lord, You never let go of me

And I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
A glorious light beyond all compare
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
We'll live to know You here on the earth


Yes, I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
Still I will praise You, still I will praise You

You can listen to this here:

Lord God, we pray for Zosh and his daughter at this tragic time. We cannot begin to know the pain this loss has brought to them. Please be close to them.

In Jesus' name we pray.


The Lord's Prayer

Our Father,
Who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For thing is the Kingdom,
The power and the glory,
For ever and ever. Amen.

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