Hillfarrance Church is looking for volunteers to clean the church Because of people moving away, we are down to two people! If you would be prepared to be on a rota to do a bit of dusting and vacuuming once a month (or less if we get lots of volunteers!) please contact Marcia on 461245.
Why is Easter so late this year? I’ve been asked on numerous occasions already this year. I find myself explaining that it is to do with the way Passover is calculated and that in turn brings astonishment because people don’t connect Jesus with Judaism and the Last Supper being the Passover meal. But facts apart, on reflection I think people are asking the question not because they want a factual answer but because somehow Easter, in the back of peoples’ minds, is associated with hope and new life, the beginning of warmth and the end of early darkness.
I’ve never been a great lover of January and February with low dark skies and not so many hours of sunshine – some people actual suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder. It seems to me that when negative things happen during these months feelings of despair and loneliness can be multiplied. Often this can be further hampered by the season of Lent as we give up things which can be a comfort to us – so, being positive, at least this year Lent falls in March!
So, what can we do when the skies are grey and the sun seems to have left us and it’s cold? Here are my tips! When you can’t leave the house, dust off your Bible and read a Gospel from beginning to end. When you turn the lights on as it gets dark, pray for those who truly are living in darkness. Invite someone to come with you to craft group, bereavement café, baby or toddler group at St Luke’s Centre. Can you continue the list?
It’s another 11 weeks until Easter… so let’s lighten peoples’ lives as we travel towards that great festival of hope, and in lightening others I pray we might find a bit of light ourselves.
St Andrew’s church in Wiveliscombe are holding 2 workshops which might be of interest to you:
Mon 28th Jan 7pm Lay Pastoral assistants training. If you feel God might be calling you to visit people, help with baptism or bereavement follow-up, listen carefully to others, please let Alison know if you’d like to attend this taster.
Sat 23rd Feb Fabric workshop – led by Yvonne Bell who made the shirts for Rev Richard Coles on Strictly come dancing! If you have an interest in banners/altar frontals/kneelers etc then don’t miss this! Again, let Alison know
These are the words of this year’s 60second sermon on Christmas
Day. They are adapted from an anonymous Argentinian poem called
Che Jesus written in the 1970s –
Jesus why is it that you seem to come back to be born every
You must be crazy! . . . or perhaps you’re trying to tell us something:
That the message of God’s love and grace needs to take root in each of our hearts.
That we need to change selfishness for love.
That we need to learn what it means to be brothers and sisters.
That we need to be serious about fighting for those without bread, education, freedom, and dignity.
That there is a message that’s called the Good News, and a Church, and that’s us –
A Church that should be servant of all,
a Church that knows that because God became human one Christmas,
there is no other way to love Him but to love all people.
If that’s the way it is, Jesus, come to my house,
Come to my country,
Come to the world of humanity.
And first of all, come to my heart.
Thank you to everyone who participated our latest fundraising event for St Luke’s Centre. We are pleased to report that we raised £163.00!
This year, The Bible Society is once again challenging us throughout Advent, to take on 24 acts of kindness to show others there’s more to Christmas than they might have thought.Top challenges from last year include: Letting someone out before you when driving. Saying three kind things in a day. Being quick to forgive when people hurt you or frustrate you. I’m going to give it a go – what about you? You can sign up to the Advent challenge at https://www.biblesociety.org.uk/get-involved/adventchallenge/ Part of the idea in the challenge is to take our focus away from the intense pressures of preparing the material things which can so dominate our lives in the lead up to Christmas – a practical way to remember who we are as Christians and what the message of the Kingdom is about. Another way we can prepare our hearts for Christmas is to commit some time each day to being quiet and thoughtful about the season – maybe by reading an Advent book and ensuring we don’t neglect worship and prayer.
My hope is that your Advent will be full of such wonderful preparation for Christmas that when you get to Christmas day, you will be sure of why you rejoice in the baby who brought love, hope, forgiveness and joy. And my prayer for you lies in the words of John Lennon!
“So this is Christmas and what have you done
Another year over, a new one just begun
And so this is Christmas, I hope you have fun
The near and the dear ones, the old and the young
And so this is Christmas for weak and for strong
The rich and the poor ones, the road is so long
And so happy Christmas for black and for white
For yellow and red ones let’s stop all the fights
A very merry Christmas and a happy new year
Let’s hope it’s a good one without any fear.”
In September we had a small but hard working band of people who did an excellent job of tidying up the church yard and giving the church a good clean (under Jacqueline’s watchful eye). Many thanks to those who helped including those from our church and from the bell-ringing team.