31st March 2020
Dear friends at St Nicholas’
We got through our second livestream service! As predicted, there were some technical hitches but it was good to meet together in Jesus’ name and encourage one another. Home groups are meeting by Zoom this week. If you like the idea of a home group but aren’t in one and would like to give it a try, please do say.
We are also working on an address list to enable church members to contact one another more easily. This has been an ongoing project for some time now and was slightly slowed by concerns over GDPR. Many members have already given consent for details to be on a church list circulated to everyone on the list (but not published); if you have, you should soon receive a copy of it and if you don’t receive that by the end of this week, please email Kay firstname.lastname@example.org to ask to be added to the second edition of the list next Monday giving:
Names of everyone in your household that wants to be included, plus as much as you are happy with of:
- postal address
- phone number
- mobile number
- email address
This Thursday, being the first Thursday in the month, is our church prayer meeting at 7.30pm and as I always say, if you consider yourself to belong to St Nicholas’ you are more than welcome and should really be there if you possibly can. Everybody has the opportunity to pray out loud but nobody is obliged to. Where? Not in the Miller Room this month, of course! It’s happening in a Zoom chatroom, which you can attend from the comfort of your own home. Those on our email list have received the invitation. If you didn't get the email and you'd like to come, please get in touch for the details.
See you there!
28th March 2020
Dear friend at St Nicholas’
We’re gearing up for another Sunday Livestream. Last Sunday came across as slicker than most people were expecting, with a surprisingly “professional” feel for such a small bunch of amateurs as us. I think we were blessed with a bit of “beginners’ luck.” Brace yourself this week for a bit more clunkiness, for 3 reasons:
- Issues that happened not to arise last week might arise this week.
- Copyright is an issue. Last Sunday we played some videos from YouTube for the songs in a way that was in breach of YouTube’s policy and so Hugh has been working hard all week to find alternative ways to accompany our singing legitimately. This is a bit more difficult than the shortcuts we took in the rush last week.
- Last Sunday I had a member of my family in my study with me, pressing all the right buttons at the right times. Now that I am “unclean”, I’m on my own (humanly speaking). Bear with me as I try to strike a balance between on the one hand “being present”, looking at you (i.e. the camera) and trying to say the right things, and on the other hand making sure you can see and hear what you need to. Multitasking is never my strong suit, so pray for me.
Never has James 4:13-15 resonated so much for us, in so many ways:
13 Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’
Anna Young wrote a powerful poem yesterday evening that expresses those thoughts eloquently. I look forward to sharing it with you soon.
Don’t forget that our clocks go forward one hour this Saturday night, and be up bright and early for the 10.45 BST livestream at 09.45 GMT! After the service everyone is invited into a Zoom chat room for Virtual Coffee. Even if you don’t like real coffee, you might like Virtual Coffee. Nigel S is running a short quiz at it, which promises to be entertaining. Do follow Hugh’s instructions from the links on the website to get Zoom set up in advance in your home. We especially want non-tekkie people (the older the better) to join in! If you have difficulty with that or with getting on the Live Stream, call Hugh on 07580 159714.
We have a special children’s spot coming up from far away, which I’m hoping the adults will appreciate too. One of the characteristic joys of a St Nicholas’ 10.45 service in more normal times is the enthusiasm with which some of our senior members enter into that moment before the younger ones go out to Junior church. I hope that will be recreated in some way. And then children will need a separate device from their grownups for Live Junior Church during the service, which again is on Zoom so parents, please contact Hugh if you haven’t already heard from him, to get something to print for the children and check you’re au fait de la Zoom.
The important thing is not smoothness of communication, but connecting with one another, speaking the truth in love, and growing in Christ (Ephesians 4:15).
26th March 2020
What a beautiful day! I hope your spirits are keeping up. Lots of people feel lifted by the sunshine; others will be feeling lonely, trapped, and low already, and knowing that our lockdown has only just started. We have great celebrations in the vicarage about managing to book a supermarket delivery slot. Perhaps you’re worrying about how to get enough food, how to collect medicines (if the pharmacy can supply them; we have inhalers for asthma but can’t get spares*), or whether the lovely postman’s delivery could be a biological missile coming through the letterbox.
As I said before, please don’t suffer, or struggle, in silence. Hugh is coordinating offers of, and requests for, help. So far he has had lots of offers and not many requests! We’re grateful for that and we know it’s going to get worse before it gets better, but he’d love to hear from you if you need a prescription or some shopping collecting, a letter posting or an errand running. Or if you’d just like to say “good morning” to your friendly out-of-a-job Lollipop Man.
Do you know the book of Lamentations? Written in a time of terrible national disaster for Judah, with the destruction of Jerusalem and the cruelty of the Babylonians making Covid 19 a mild inconvenience by comparison, it felt as though God had abandoned his people, or he had been defeated. But he gave this comforting song:
Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.”
As I write, at this exact moment Harry has just brought to me a massive portion of apple crumble. The last of the garden apples 2019 had to come out of the freezer to make room for the supermarket delivery. What brilliant sons I’m blessed with, who will make a crumble when their parents are both self-isolating! I’m happy as Larry with my portion. And it came just as I was wondering how to say something about the LORD being our portion. There we are. We may not always have apple crumble. We may not have family tending to our needs (although don’t forget church family are here for you). We may not (indeed will not) always have breath. But if we see the LORD as our portion, and take our joy in him, that can never be taken from us.
God bless you
*NB we have enough at this stage and are not worried; I mention it only to help connect with the possible fearful positions of others we don’t know about.
24th March 2020
Dear friends at St Mary’s and St Nicholas’ (again I am sending the same email to both lists)
Many of us are starting to imagine how God may be using this terribly difficult, challenging and no doubt increasingly painful for many, time to work for good in our lives, our churches, and perhaps even our churches and world.
As I write, YouTube tells me yesterday’s streamed services had 38 views (St Mary’s) and 135 views (St Nick’s). I don’t know what that means. Some of those are other churches looking at what one another have done to see what we can learn from each other. Some are probably people just having a laugh at what a mess I made of the first 30 seconds of the 10.45 service (all to prove it was live, and give the opportunity for some Public Health education, you understand). But we had a good number tuning in live, comparable to a typical Sunday congregation, or more, if some of the devices had whole families gathered around. It’s an opportunity for those who wouldn’t normally come, to take a look anonymously. Perhaps you might join me in praying that some of the scattered seeds of God’s word might take root. If you struggle with the technology to watch the livestream, don’t hesitate to phone Hugh for help: 07580 159714. He, Anna, Ian, Samuel, Harry and Jane all worked hard to make those services what they were.
It’s an opportunity for those of us who live with our families to spend more time with them, for those who live alone to connect with others more by phone and other remote means, and for all of us to be thoughtful and caring towards our neighbours who may be in need, and for the love of our church family to grow. Could the Lord be using this virus to grow those things in us?
And it’s an opportunity to slow down and reflect. The Government’s shockingly strong (but no doubt appropriate) action last night had a striking effect this morning. I haven’t been out and about, of course, but I opened the window this morning when I realised how little traffic there was on the dual carriageway. “It sounds like it’s snowed,” said Barnaby. We listened to the sound of silence in harmony with more birdsong than one expects on a snowy day. “Be still and know that I am God,” says the Lord (Psalm 46:10). I’m sorry that I said “more tomorrow” on Sunday evening when the better thing for me to do was to take some rest on Monday morning after the big push to get livestreaming going. The admin keeps piling in, as well as the dear communication with people, but as Becky has just reminded me, I need sleep
22nd March 2020
Dear friends at St Mary’s and St Nicholas’
Thank you all who joined us for the live stream this morning, and the many who texted in, which really helped to make it a point of connection with a sense of carrying on being church. If you missed it, you can still watch it on “catch-up” by clicking the link on our website or searching for it on YouTube.
One thing I meant to say in the notices but forgot: in response to the call for a national Day of Prayer today, we are asked particularly to pause at 7.00pm and pray. Sorry this is short notice then and many of you won’t get it in time, but you can still pray later. The Archbishops say:
May the wisdom of God lead the doctors, nurses and researchers, that they may know God’s protection; and that God will guide the leaders of the nations into the ways of justice and peace. And that the love of Christ will surround us and take away our anxiety and give us His peace. May He hear us and heal us.
With the hope that you will find, then act. Where someone is ill, encourage them. Where someone dies, remember that, as the foundation of our faith for over two thousand years, we have believed that God shared the pains and fears of our lives in Jesus Christ, that He faced death, but overcame it. And He is with the bereaved.
Pray too for the suppliers of food and medical essentials, delivery drivers, those working in public sanitation (recycling, refuse, sewage, etc), and I’m sure you can extend the list with imagination.
It has been suggested that everyone should put a candle in their window to let people know we are praying for them. If enough people do that I suppose word could get around and it could be a powerful symbol (even if not many people are out and about to see).
More tomorrow. With love
21st March 2020
Dear friends at St Nick’s
How are you doing? Are you coping, keeping away from everybody else but managing to get a bit of exercise, getting food and so on? Please give me or Hugh a call just to stay in touch, or especially if you get ill or need any help. We’ve got quite a few people who’ve offered to try and fetch or deliver things. Don’t suffer in silence. I heard today that the pharmacists at Batheaston had major problems so if you’re expecting to get something from there, check first.
Our household’s isolation is getting a little tougher as Becky has had a fever since Thursday evening so it’s looking likely that she has caught “it” – although we can’t imagine from where as we’ve all been so scrupulous with the handwashing and everything. But with A-levels and GCSEs cancelled I’ve got two extra pairs of strong hands to help with looking after her and the others.
In case you've lost track of the days, Sunday is now TOMORROW! Below are some detailed instructions which some of you will find patronising, but others of you who find technology as hard as I do (probably born before 1975) might appreciate an “idiot’s guide” (no offence). To get ready for our St Nicholas’ Mothering Sunday 10.45 With A Difference:
1. Please pray for the Lord’s blessing on our time “together”, for the smooth working of technology, for me as I lead and Ian Williams’ sermon, for the streaming going out, for church members to be able to connect and participate in it, and for others who wouldn’t normally come to church to look in and give it a try.
2. Have a look at the homepage today, and you should see a link to where the live stream is going to be.
3. Click the appropriate link (St Mary’s 9.00am or St Nicholas’ 10.45am). It’s not playing yet but that is where you will watch it tomorrow. You can watch from a smartphone, smart TV, tablet, laptop or PC. It needs to be a device that can connect to the internet (better to use home broadband rather than mobile data) and can play sound.
4. Why not email me to let me know you’re planning to virtually attend? If you have children who could be watching, email me and we’ll send you something to help make it all age-appropriate.
5. If there are others in your household who don’t normally come, let them know what you’re doing. They may want to keep away, or it would be lovely if they’d like to join you.
6. On Sunday morning, at the time that you would normally be heading out to church, put the kettle on and make yourself comfortable. It would be good to have your own Bible with you.
7. Around 10.30am try clicking on the “play” button of the livestream screen. Some music should start playing as you wait for the service to start. That will give a chance to set your volume control to a comfortable level.
8. Make it “full screen” by clicking on the symbol for that in the bottom right of the picture.
9. If you are having technical difficulties, give Hugh a call on 07580 159714 and he’ll be pleased to try and help.
10. Don’t phone me (Jonty) at this point because I’ll be leading the service, but send me an SMS text to 07905 883075 and let me know you’re coming and I might read it out at the end of the service.
11. At 10.45am you should start to see my face beamed to you from the vicarage, and we’ll start the service.
There will be some words of prayers, just like a normal Sunday, up on the screen, and the words of hymns with the sound of others singing. But unlike being in church, nobody will see or hear whether or not you join in out loud with saying anything or singing the hymns. Why not join in heartily? If you sing out of tune, you can sing as loud as you like! But if it feels a bit awkward, it’s fine to keep quiet and listen. God hears your heart whether or not you speak or sing out.
The reading and sermon and the prayers have been pre-recorded this week by St Nicholas’ members.
At the end, I’d love you to text or email me and give some feedback. We’re learning as we go along and will be wanting to improve it for next week. In particular, would you be interested in a more interactive format than Youtube livestream? Something like Zoom might enable us to have virtual coffee time together at the end, and to do the “children’s spot” for adults and children more like the way we tend to when we can all see each other.
See you tomorrow!
20th March 2020
Dear friends in St Nicholas’
Today seems to be the first day in a while with no new rules on how to keep ourselves and each other safe, and no new big announcements. There's not much to add in terms of practicalities for church or village life, but Jonty has asked me to share this poem. I wrote it a few years ago, but it seems apt at the moment:
Life is scary
Its ups and downs
Can't be tamed
By woman or man
Life is fragile
Like grains of sand
Slip through your fingers
And out of your hands
Life is empty
Christ is life
Peace in abundance
Not fading, not fake
Christ is strong
Holding the world
From splitting in two
Christ is purpose
Meaning is found
On the palm of his hand
Broken or fixed
The future is certain
Christ sits on his throne
Keep looking out for one another and looking up to the Lord Jesus
Churchwarden, St Nicholas' Bathampton
19th March 2020: Coronavirus
Dear friends in St Nicholas’
The thing that made it hit home to me emotionally today was reading that official guidance issued to NHS hospitals says that dying patients should be encouraged to say goodbye to their families over Skype during the outbreak. Up until then, to be honest, I hadn’t shed a tear over this crisis, but I have now. Hugh and I have been positively getting on with urgently learning to use new technology and preparing for the livestream services on Sunday for St Mary’s and St Nicholas’. The activity and opportunity is stimulating. Others have been talking about watching the news when it was in distant countries with a detachment that makes it feel almost like entertainment. But the utter heartbreak – which I knew about theoretically – suddenly becomes more real when you picture those thousands of scenes of lonely distress. I’m sorry if you find this too distressing a message in your inbox. But we should prepare ourselves for this to come close to home. Remember that The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18. Jesus wept when his friend died (John 11:35) but he also demonstrated his resurrection power over death.
Our family are now officially in isolation after talking to the GP by phone about young Digby’s symptoms. He had a cold and a slight fever on Sunday so we isolated him in accordance with the then guidance; he got over the fever quickly but has a slight cough so with the new guidance, that keeps all six of us locked down for two weeks even though we’re presently all feeling fairly well. There is plenty to be busy with via the computer and phone. Let’s pray for our GPs specifically as we go on praying for all who are working in the NHS. Ours was pleased to exchange promises of prayer as he talked about a present sense of calm before the storm.
As you keep receiving these updates from an automated sender, it is increasingly likely that your computer or your email system might identify them as SPAM and start filtering them out. To prevent this, please add the sender “Nicholas Bathampton” email@example.com to your address book / “contacts” and it will then know that you trust these emails.
You are probably aware that Steps in Faith, MiniClub, and just about everything have now stopped meeting. Home groups are developing electronic ways of being together and keeping encouraging one another. If you’re not in one and would like to link up, let me know. For those on PCC (church council), look out for an invitation this Friday to next Thursday’s meeting which will take place on Zoom (via videolink)! The APCM (Annual Meeting) scheduled for 26th April will, I think, be postponed. Legal advice on that is filtering down to the parishes, as well as details on how weddings and funerals are affected.
God bless you
18th March 2020: Coronavirus
Dear friends at St Nicholas’
I said things were changing fast yesterday. Then today we had a letter from the Archbishops hitting the national headlines. Churches are halting public worship in an unprecedented move. They said:
Public worship will have to stop for a season. Our usual pattern of Sunday services and other mid-week gatherings must be put on hold. But this does not mean that the Church of England has shut up shop. Far from it…
Being a part of the Church of England is going to look very different in the days ahead. Our life is going to be less characterised by attendance at church on Sunday, and more characterised by the prayer and service we offer each day. We may not be able to pray with people in the ways that we are used to, but we can certainly pray for people. And we can certainly offer practical care and support. Please do carry on supporting the local foodbank and buy extra provisions for it. Ensure the night shelters wherever possible are kept open. There are many very encouraging schemes happening right across our country in communities to focus on caring for the most vulnerable, so do continue to play your part in those.
Then by our service, and by our love, Jesus Christ will be made known, and the hope of the gospel – a hope that will counter fear and isolation - will spread across our land.
So our Sunday, Thursday, and Friday services will not be happening in St Nicholas’. We considered keeping the building open for prayer but felt the infection risk, and the burden on those who unlock, lock, clean and disinfect (some of whom are already self-isolating) to be out of proportion to the priority this should be given. Public worship needs to move out of the building and so does private prayer.
As well as a challenging time and potentially a tragic time of loss for many, this is an exciting opportunity. Church will move into hundreds of thousands of homes via live streaming. We will be able to engage with God in worship, experiencing in a new way that it is not just about what we do in church but, as we read the other day in Romans 12:1, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. We had been hoping to live stream from St Nick’s at 10.45am on Sunday, with most of the congregation present and only some watching from home, but now it will come from elsewhere, probably the Vicarage. All you’ll have to do is get on your computer, smartphone or whatever device you see the Internet through, and go to the St Nicholas’ web page. It would be a good idea to have your own bible with you, and maybe a cup of coffee, and invite other members of your household to give it a try. I’ll lead the service and Ian Williams will preach. It’ll be Mothering Sunday of course, but a very different one from usual. The churches are calling for a national day of prayer and we’ll take part in that. There will be hymns and songs: music and words, so a bit like a cross between being at St Nick’s and watching Songs of Praise. If you’re on your own, you can just listen or you can turn the volume up, join in out loud, and sing your heart out: nobody else need know if you sing out of tune. But God hears and will be delighted if it’s from the heart. I’ll also give out my mobile number and invite you to text in by SMS… then I’ll read out some of the incoming messages, prayer requests and greetings to the rest of the congregation to give more of a sense of being together as St Nick’s even though we can’t be together in Bathampton.
Do please give me a call or send me an email, especially if you are stuck at home on your own. And keep taking the precautions against spreading infection – handwashing, etc, etc. And grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
17th March 2020: Coronavirus
Dear friends at St Nicholas’
Things are changing fast. But God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea (Psalm 46:1-2)!
Many more people are needing to self-isolate. Communities are pulling together in a beautiful way. The church is, or should be, at the heart of that, so:
- Don’t suffer in silence. Solitary confinement can be a horrible thing; do phone or email me or someone else in the church if you need practical help or just a chat. Several people have offered help with collecting and delivering shopping, or in other ways, so do ask if you need help. Hugh Cornes is the point of contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 07580 159714.
- If you can help, please do! It doesn’t all have to be coordinated centrally – you can of course quietly get on with helping a church member you know or a neighbour – but if you’re available to help where there’s a need beyond that (maybe with delivering shopping, phoning someone twice a week to check they are OK, or something else, please contact Hugh: email@example.com 07580 159714.
Many of us have been struggling to get supermarket delivery slots and some are, or soon will be, unable to get out to the shops. It’s worth knowing, then, about a couple of other initiatives that you might find helpful.
- Deliveries from Larkhall shops. I found this via the Nextdoor Bathampton website: Some of the local Larkhall shops are currently doing a joint delivery service to BA1 and BA2 postcodes. You simply have to call the shop(s) you want to purchase from to place your order, and it will be delivered the next day. Phone numbers for the shops are as follows:
Larkhall Butchers - 01225 313987
Larkhall Farm Shop - 01225 319968
Goodies Delicatessen - 01225 336033
Larkhall Deli - 01225 444634
Ma Cuisine - 01225 312959
- COOK (who produce frozen, home-cooked style quite expensive meals) say: Our shops are all open and doing everything they can to serve our local communities (our Click & Collect service may be helpful at this time). As a small way of seeking to help vulnerable people we’re putting aside some meals in COOK shops* for those in need. So, if you have an elderly or infirm neighbour who you’re worried about, please mention it at the till in your local COOK shop and we’ll happily give you some meals for them, free of charge. (T’s & C’s apply. The nearest shops are in Bristol and Wells but they do free delivery on a £30 order.)
- Andy LW mentioned to me, and I haven’t checked this yet with Kay from Number 25 Café on Holcombe Lane, that Number 25 are going to do a delivery service of meals for those isolated in their houses. I think there’s a big batch of spag bol being cooked for tomorrow.
The Government announcement this afternoon means that many more people will have to stay at home as this crisis deepens. All social gatherings are to stop. Schools are considered essential and are to carry on. I don’t think churches have been mentioned. Which category are we closer to? We await directives from the Diocese but it looks as though most people should not come to services for some time from now on. We are working hard to get live streaming of the 10.45 going. Whether that is from St Nick’s building, and with how many people physically present, or from somewhere else like the Vicarage, will be decided later. All other St Nicholas’ services apart from the 10.45 are cancelled until further notice. So please plan to join us – probably via the Internet – at 10.45 on Sunday morning.
Grace and peace be with you
16th March 2020: Coronavirus
We were very thin on the ground at St Nick’s this week as many people – if they weren’t running the Bath Half – took the sensible decision to stay at home, whether for their own sake or for others’. (Please do keep doing that if either you feel unwell – especially with a cough and high temperature – or you are worried about catching the virus because of particular vulnerability). But the Lord was certainly with us.
People were very good about traipsing out to the loos to wash hands in lovely hot soapy water. I didn’t see any handshaking, of course. And we realised that we each need to take all paper (noticesheet and service sheet) that we have touched home for recycling rather than leaving it in church to be touched by multiple hands. Junior Church happened in a scaled-down way and we shared the Lord’s Supper “in one kind” (just the bread – or wafer – and no wine) after re-gelling our hands.
I was very encouraged by Margaret’s sermon on Romans 13:8-14. Our new identity as God’s adopted children leads to a life of love, fulfilling his law. We’re looking forward to the sunrise and it’s just about dawn so get up and get dressed! Intrigued? Navigate to the Sermons page to hear or watch it. It’s a learning experience and I hope that by next Sunday we might be able to have more of the service available, perhaps even livestreamed so that people stuck at home can be more nearly with us as we meet. Please let us know if you’re not coming.
Men’s group is off on Monday evening (16th), and so is Tuesday Home Group. Wednesday Home Group will make a decision soon.
Keep in touch, keep encouraging one another, take care and God bless.
Precautions we are taking in light of Coronavirus
Following Government and Church of England advice we are continuing with the normal pattern of services at both churches, but things are rather different.
- If you are feeling unwell, even with a cold, and especially if you have the main symptoms of cough, high temperature and shortness of breath, please, for the sake of others, stay at home.
- If you or another member of your household are vulnerable because of other health conditions, or are worried about the possibility of catching coronavirus, especially if you are an older person, please stay at home.
We normally want to encourage you to come, and our theme verse urges us to keep meeting together, but in these circumstances we have to find other ways to encourage one another. Phone calls and emails between congregation members are important in this. Please let me know if you’re staying away, it helps me to pray for you and it encourages me to know that you would otherwise want to be with us.
For those of us who do come to church:
- Please wash hands just before you leave home and again on arrival, with warm water and soap. We may start a minute or two late to facilitate that. If you can’t get through to the loos for handwashing, you will be offered sanitising hand gel at the door as you arrive. Please use it.
- Do not shake hands with anyone, and try to avoid all direct physical contact. It’s normally good to squash up and share a pew with others rather than scatter, but at this time let’s spread out more. Try to stay a metre apart.
- Please bring tissues and if you cough or sneeze, follow NHS advice to catch it, bin it, kill it – so clean your hands again.
- We will not have a collection so if you would have given that way, please use the plate at the door on your way in.
- Our services tomorrow are Communion services and following Church of England advice we will be receiving the sacrament in one kind only, that is the bread and not sharing a cup. In fact we’ll use wafers rather than normal bread.
- On your way up to the rail, sanitise your hands so that you’re not putting germs on the wafer that goes in your own mouth.
- Please stand at the rail rather than kneeling. This is because many people can’t get up from kneeling without putting their hands on the rail, which would make it a transmission risk. If we all do the same it’s more encouraging to them.
- Please take all paper (service cards, notice sheets, song word sheets) home with you and recycle them if you no longer need them, we will not be collecting them back in.
It does need a change of mindset and let’s remind each other and be patient and gracious with one another. Remember especially those who are housebound or in nursing homes where they can’t have visitors. And keeping our distance could be a lonely thing for others too. Look out for one another and keep in touch in appropriate ways.