"To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven". The sacrament of Holy Communion took place for the very last time in Hebden Methodist Chapel on Sunday, October 23rd. From that date it will no longer be a place of worship. The pews where we've sung and prayed and come before God will likely be ripped out, the lovely old organ pass to a private collection, the building deconsecrated and sold.
|Next notice may read 'For Sale' (Click to enlarge pictures)|
Our Minister, Rev Janet Clasper, did well to hide her emotions as she preached on the above text from Ecclesiastes 3 v.1. And my mouth was drying as I read Paul's 'love letter' to the Corinthians ( Ch 13) to our final congregation. But hymns were sung lustily and our final gathering round the Communion table had a more powerful meaning being reminiscent of another Last Supper that took place in Jerusalem a long time ago. Our Chapel doors may be closed but our hearts are still well and truly open to God and all His wonders.
|Things bright and beautiful - a new carpet|
Members of the congregation chose their favourite hymn for our final service and one came to mind as we ran on that crisp autumn morning of blue sky with its riot of colour and leaves tumbling from the trees to carpet our path with russet and gold. All things were indeed bright and beautiful. (On her 'Order of Service' Janet had abbreviated it to 'All things B&B' which made me smile).
|A bit chilly in the lane on Saturday's run|
It was a weekend when we saw our first frost too. I'd been running across warm, sunlit fields between Linton and Thorpe and came to a narrow lane little more than a metre wide. Under its shaded limestone walls the grass was frosted and such was the difference in temperature my shades immediately steamed up.
|Sundays run along the riverbank|
The wonderful tints continue, making running a real joy, and I can never make up my mind whether Autumn or Spring is my favourite time of year. Colour-wise it's got to be Autumn but Spring has the added bonus of birdsong, the thrill of hearing the first curlew or sighting the first ring ouzel. Maybe, come whichever season, they're all favourites!
|Sometimes it's easier to nip over walls....|
Even without abundance of bird life winter landscapes have something new to offer on almost every run, sometimes challenging and exciting if snow has blanketed the hills, sometimes muddy and 'orrible!
|...than squeeze through them|
We're told, by a lady who runs early in the morning, that an otter has taken up residence on a stretch of river near Hebden Suspension Bridge and a gentleman in the village has actually photographed it.
|Des Res for an otter|
It couldn't have chosen a more beautiful place to set up home, where kingfishers dart by and bats skim low across the water for their evening meals. Trout fishermen may not welcome it if it spoils their fun.
We're hoping it finds a mate.