Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sponsored Cycle Ride

Woodlands - All Saints

Well - Here goes - leaving All Saints at 12:40pm on Sunday 21st June - Why I chose Father's Day to do this is beyond me! Accompanied by my wife Jacquie and Malcolm (who cycles 20 miles each way to work every day)

Adwick - St Laurence

Well - that was the easy bit - down the hill free wheeling most of the way. If only the whole deanery was going downhill

Hmm! Perhaps that didn't quite come out quite as I meant it to...

Skellow - St Michael

Isn't it amazing how when driving in a car you don't notice when a road is very slightly uphill but when you are on a bike and realising that you really aren't as fit as you ought to be the hills suddenly appear...

Somehow Sprotbrough seems to be getting further away!!!

Burghwallis - St Helen

My first ever visit to St Helen's with a very welcome cup of Apple Juice - it is Heritage Day today - Ah that is why we are doing this today!

Sadly our first setback - Jacquie's back wheel has a puncture - thankfully between Malcolm (our resident cycle expert) and one of the Church Wardens (Burghwallis' resident cycle expert) we are sealed, pumped and on our way, but a little behind time.

Campsall - St Mary Magdelene

I've driven past a few times but never stopped. What an interesting frontage, but with the time we lost fixing the puncture we've no time to stop - maybe next time!!

Off for the last climb up to the Askern Pit Top and then downhill at last!!

Actually the climbs up to Burghwallis and Campsall weren't as bad as I feared - I'm not looking forward to Richmond Hill on the last leg to St Mary's in Sprotbrough though!!

Askern - St Peter

Askern at last! From here it should be fairly straightforward at least until we get to St Edmunds!

Sadly we are down to 2 cyclists - the repair on Jacquie's rear wheel gave way just above Campsall and she had to gracefully retire!

Thanks to Darren for rescuing her!

Owston - All Saints

It is amazing how short a distance feels in a car but how long it feels on a bike - at least the road from Askern to Owston is flat - but boy oh boy cars going past at 60mpg is a bit hairy!!

Another wonderfully cold cup of juice to revive tired limbs.

New Bentley - St Philip and St James

The longest leg to here and some of the bridges between here and Owston are a bit steep - I'm beginning to appreciate the level crossing ahead in Arksey, but at least we got a glimpse of home - All Saints set on the hill over to our right!

New Bentley is similar to All Saints - red brick with white plaster - yet so wonderfully different

A quiet moment at the back of the church
Our worship styles are VERY different
but the truth of our relationship is
One Church, One Faith, One Lord.

Arksey - All Saints

The third All Saints on our route and a church whose layout and architecture has a story to tell - it will have to wait for another day.

Arksey marks the eastern edge of the Deanery - Go West Young Man!

(Well - not so young any more but hey!)

Bentley - St Peter

The range of Church architecture in the Deanery is fascinating but once again there is no time to explore. Only a brief pause whilst Rev Mark Wigglesworth and Rev Ali Dorey from Askern meet up with us.

The plan had been to cycle together from Askern but Jacquie's puncture put paid to that.

Now to try and find St Luke's in Scawthorpe
- any ideas Mark??

Scawthorpe - St Luke

We've found it!!!

Where a church should be - in the heart of a community, not far from the shops.

A gentle reminder that
"man looks on the outside
but God looks on the heart!"

Scawsby - St Leonard and St Jude

Crossing the A638 York Road was easy - no traffic, but the A635 Barnsley Road was much harder. In the end I got off the bike and crossed at the pelican whilst the others took advantage of the red light and turned right into the cark park.

I presume that the No Waiting sign painted on the ground didn't apply to us Father Pay - did it?

Anchorage Lane - St Edmund

Via the Great North Road and a quiet cycle path leads to our penultimate church.

Not far to go now - Just Richmond Hill stands between us and the finish line at Sprotbrough.

Mark and Ali are doing the full circuit - for them Sprotbrough is only another waypost, for us it is mission accomplished!

Still at St Edmunds

It is nearly 4pm but we have just enough time to say hello to Rev John Richards and Rev Katie Francis as they host Sprotbrough's Annual Re-enactment of the moment the Disciples were met at the Empty Tomb by two people dressed all in White.

Sprotbrough - St Mary

Journey's end - for me at least - Mark and Ali are heading off for their next leg - Malcolm is cycling home.

It seems ironic that my cycle ride was from All Saints
to St Mary's as it was here in Sprotbrough that my own journey of faith began when I first worshipped here aged 4.

Strange how God works sometimes.

Anyway - 20.74 miles ends here ... or does it?

Skelbrooke - St Michael

I felt so guilty about missing out Skelbrooke that I decided to extend the day and here I am - stood with my bike outside the last of the Deanery Churches...

but then a confession.

It was a 2.0 litre Diesel Injection engine which provided the power for this journey rather than a 2 leg power Vicar on a bike.

Ah well Skelbrooke - Maybe next time!!

Friday, June 19, 2009