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Saint Martin of Tours Guston Parish Church

 

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News from Guston

 

I The dandelion is seen by most people as a weed that is troublesome to remove from lawns. It also goes under the names of Irish daisy, wild endive, faceclock, swine's snout, and blowball. The name dandelion comes from the French, 'dents de lion', meaning lion's teeth, referring to the jagged shape of the long leaves.

 

To most gardeners, the dandelion is a stubborn weed which is very difficult to eradicate permanently, partly due to its long and strong roots. Unless the whole root is removed, it will re-grow with as much vigour as previously, and this is one of its strengths. Another strength is its method of seed dispersal. We all know the fun children have, and ourselves too, if truth be known, in blowing the dandelion 'clocks', arriving at the time by counting each puff. When left to nature, these seeds, designed to be airborne, can be carried for miles in strong winds, ending up in new environments, where they can germinate and flourish - they need very little soil in which to get a purchase.

 

Its flower is reminiscent of the sun and its seed head that of the moon. Whole areas of fields in Spring can be full of it's cheerful blooms, almost shouting for joy with the vibrancy of its yellow flowers, only to be followed in a few weeks time by the quieter silvery white 'clocks' their soft spheres catching the sunlight on bright days.

 

Dandelions have other strengths too - medicinal. It is reputed to lower cholesterol, act as both a laxative and diuretic (a French name is 'pis en lit'!), and work as a skin healer. It is also rich in Vitamins A, B, C and folic acid and contains iron, copper and calcium. The young leaves are edible and add a certain piquancy to salads, so, we all should be eating dandelions in order to benefit from all the goodness they contain, rather than pulling them up. Their cheerful appearance, especially when seen in large quantities, might also be said to act as a visual 'pick-me-up', uplifting to the mind and spirit.

 

Its tenacity is considerable, as when removed from a lawn or cracks in the path, even if some of the root comes up, the dandelion will almost certainly reappear. The roots lie dormant during Winter, ready for its rebirth in Spring. I don't want to anthropomorphize the dandelion, but I think there is a metaphor we can extract - if there is something good, however hard someone tries to destroy it, there is the opportunity for re-birth if the roots are strong. Let us pray our Christian life can be as well rooted.

 

I now have a new respect for the dandelion and will bless its appearance each year, rather than curse it.

 

 

 

 

Gallery For > Dandelion

Sun and moon

 

 

 

Services for October:

 

Sunday 1 October 6pm Harvest Festival - Sung Evensong, followed by the Harvest Supper in the Chance Inn. This will be an ecumenical service, including parishioners from St Paul's, Dover and St Finbarr's Aylesham.

Sunday 8 October 10-11 am Sunday School

Sunday 15 October 6pm Holy Communion (BCP)

 

If you would like to attend the Harvest Supper, please contact Margaret Saunders on 01303 862894 to book a place by Monday 25 September. The cost is 6 per head for a generous cold buffet.

 

Services for November:

 

Sunday 5 November 6pm Sung Evensong

Saturday 11 November 6pm Patronal service and Fish & Chip supper

Sunday 12 November 10-11 am Sunday School - Act of Remembrance 10.45am

Sunday 19 6pm Holy Communion (BCP)

 

 

 

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