As Christians we believe God is close to us and that in Jesus we see his human face and that gives us comfort and assurance. Do you sometimes feel though that YOU are far from God? Are we sometimes like St Paul – so sure of our rightness that we don’t even consider what God would require in our living? And yet God came close to Paul and showed him how vital a Christian way of life is to His world.
The 25th January is the day when Paul is commemorated by Malta when he was shipwrecked. He was so impressed and thankful for the kindness and hospitality he and his fellow travellers were shown. The Week of Prayer this year focused on hospitality and was prepared by Christians Together in Malta & Gozo. We long always to know the closeness of God but
sometimes we have to readjust our thinking and living. It is easy to slip and forget to welcome and be a part of our church community, our support of others who are not like us, and to be generous to those who have little.
Paul said he received “unusual kindness” and with humility we need to offer this to those of other denominations, religions, nationalities, refugees, those who are different – and to do this simply because this is what our faith demands and is the way we will show that God is close and working through our lives and our world.
Services in February
Worship at 10:30am
2nd – Revd Nowell, HC
9th – Revd Nowell
16th – Revd Nowell – Mission in Britain, Cafe Church
223rd – Section Service at Central Methodist Church
Dates for your Diary
Mon. 03 Feb. – Craft & Friendship group – 10.30am
Mon. 10 Feb. – Craft & Friendship group – 10.30am
Fri. 14 Feb. – Dick Whittington – 7.30pm
Sat. 15 Feb. – Dick Whittington – 2pm and 7.30pm
Sat. 22 Feb. – Mission in Britain Coffee – 10-11am
Mon. 24 Feb. – Craft & Friendship group – 10.30am
Wed. 26 Feb. – Church Council – 2pm
Thurs 27 Feb – Men’s Meeting – 7.15pm
Throughout 2019 we considered several ways of helping our environment and the climate: illegal palm oil in a lot of our food, particularly confectionery and what it is doing to wildlife forests in Borneo and the rain forests across the world; how plastic wrapping paper and glitter cards at Christmas cannot be recycled; consideration of overconsumption to satisfy our wants rather than our needs; the careless over-use of single-use plastic; care with our use of water in our homes & gardens and re-usable water bottles; fast fashion which demands vast resources. These are just a few of the ways of living we considered.
Have you needed to adjust your ways of living and shopping e.g. using less plastic, and, if so, how have you been able to adapt to a more sustainable way of living? It is clear from what is happening in the world, with exceptional floods and heat that the climate is warming and we need to live sustainably if we are going to be able to save God’s world. Perhaps you need to email / write to your MP to ensure they lobby for right living, or to shops which are full of plastic? One letter or email is thought to say to those in power that at least eleven others are thinking the same, so don’t hesitate to speak out.
Heavenly Father, give us courage to care for your wonderful world. We pray that we will be filled with a spirit of concern for the future of our environment; bring an end to the exploitation of the earth’s scarce resources; and live as responsible stewards protecting and respecting this gift of creation God has placed in our hands. Amen.
Groups and Events
Pantomime – Don’t forget your tickets!
Friday evening 14th February, 7.30pm
Saturday 15th February, 2pm & 7.30pm
Tickets £5.00 from any cast member or Terry on (01522) 754254
Mission in Britain February
Sunday service on 16th February at 10.30am when we consider how our church supports Mission in Britain.
Saturday Coffee 22nd February with Cake & Bric-a-brac stalls along with a raffle. If you have a Mission in Britain box please bring it to be emptied.
Men’s Group – 27th February
Men’s Group will meet at 7.15pm on 27th February when the speaker will be Paul Disley, all men are welcome.
Thanks, Thanks, Thanks
Leaving Care Gift Service
Thank you to everyone who supported the young people who are making the transition from Care to independent living.
Our shrapnel (loose change) and the Folk Carol Service, with thanks to Jonathan and friends, raised £325.00, which will mean we can provide nine toilets for families in Africa so they will not have to go into the unsafe bush and the threat of disease because of unhygienic conditions will be greatly lessened.
Thank you to everyone who supported our soup lunch for the homeless which raised £180, and we sent 20 hats, 31 pairs of socks, 3 pairs of gloves and 10 books.
Church Envelopes & Assessment
The new year’s envelopes are now available. If you do not have church envelopes and think you would be able to give through the scheme them please ask Rosemary and she will provide them. The benefit of using envelopes is that even when you cannot attend church you are still able to put away your weekly contribution and can put the envelopes on the plate next time you are at church. This means that our church has a steady income which ensures we can carry out our mission more effectively, pay our gas & electricity & upkeep and pay our assessment.
Our assessment is the amount we have to pay each quarter to the circuit as our contribution to our Minister’s stipend and living expenses. At this time our assessment is £11,500 per
year. Totalling our assessment and our own church expenses means that to keep afloat we require £10 a week from each member. We also realise that not everyone can contribute this amount so we have events through the year to raise funds so we can continue our work here on Monks Road.
Thank you everyone for your support, not only of our church, but for the support you give to all the charities and good causes to which we contribute throughout the year.
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