Beating the Bounds
The first Saturday in May is now established as ‘Benefice Boundary Walk Day’. Or it has for us! Over the last couple of years we have also linked this Benefice Walk with the ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ global prayer initiative. This encourages Christians the world over to pray for more people to come to know Jesus.
The tradition of this walk originated from ‘Beating the Bounds’ when parishioners, ministers, wardens and choir would walk around the boundary of the Parish, praying for its protection over the coming year. The walk would take place on Rogation Sunday (before Ascension). This year’s walk on 5th May happened to fall on the eve of Rogation Sunday.
Liturgy from Northumbria
For this walk, Paul Sanderson used liturgy from the Northumbria Community Daily Office to guide us along. We began at Christ Church at 9.00am with our morning prayer and walked down Walmersley Road to St. John with St. Mark for 9.30am. At both points we prayed for each Church, the ministers, parishioners and those who were unwell.
At various places on our 13 mile Benefice Walk we stopped and reflected on the surrounding areas and for things that were significant to that location. We said prayers at the Fire Station for the Fire Service and all emergency workers. We remembered other Churches of all denominations in the Benefice at the site of the former Brunswick Methodist Church on Tesco car park. Next we said prayers for farming and countryside at Buckhurst when we paused for lunch. And we gave thanks for revitalised communities near the Waterside Bridge in Summerseat (photo at the bottom of the page). We recited the Lord’s Prayer together at some of these intervals.
Our walk covered the usual locations including Burrs Country Park, Woodhill Road and The Rock shopping complex. We then went to Freetown, Walkers Field (which is the blossom photo at the top) and Walmersley Golf Club. Then on to Scotland Lane, Nangreaves, Summerseat Garden Centre and finally the Brown Cow back at Burrs. Here we enjoyed a glass or two at the end of the day, finishing around 4.30pm.
It was an extremely enjoyable time and the weather became very warm during the afternoon. We had a good number of people, some of whom did the whole thing, and others who joined or left us at various locations. Here’s to the Benefice Walk in 2019!
When’s the next walk?
We would normally next walk on June 2nd but most of us will be at the St John & St Mark Summer Fair. So instead we’re walking on June 9th and taking a scenic route to the flower festival at St. Stephen’s. Details to follow when we’ve worked them out!
Our Walking Group meets once a month, normally on the first Saturday. Walks are usually 10 – 12 miles leaving from either St John’s Hall, Bury or Christ Church Walmersley. Please get in touch via the Contact page if you’d like more details.
[For more about St John & St Mark, Bury please visit our ‘about’ page. If you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read then please give this post a ‘like’ or leave a comment. Thank you]