Picture of the week: Congratulations to Judith on her Ordination.
Please find all of our latest news below. Praying that whatever your circumstances this week you will know God's strength, God's hand and God's blessing, and that with God's help your "bow remains steady".
Joseph is a fruitful vine,
a fruitful vine near a spring,
whose branches climb over a wall.
With bitterness archers attacked him;
they shot at him with hostility.
But his bow remained steady,
his strong arms stayed supple,
because of the hand of the Mighty One of Jacob,
because of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel,
because of your father’s God, who helps you,
because of the Almighty, who blesses you
with blessings of the skies above...
ENCOUNTER: THIS SUNDAY!
We’re really excited to gather together (in a safe and physically distanced way, obviously) to worship The Lord at Encounter this Sunday evening. We’ll begin worshipping together at 6:00pm in St Mary’s Church, but it would probably be best to get there for 5:45pm, so you’ve got time to be ushered to your seat by our lovely welcome team.
In light of current restrictions, a few things will be slightly different to how things used to happen at Encounter:
• We won’t be having our normal café beforehand or afterwards, but you might still have a little treat waiting for you in your seat!
• We won’t be able to sing, but we will still be able to worship, pray and encounter our faithful God.
So come along to enjoy an evening worshipping together, hearing some thoughts from our new youth worker Joel, and spending time in the presence of God.
We’re excited, expectant and looking forward to seeing you there!
AT HOME WITH...CHRISTINE
Not being in the same building each Sunday, we miss those opportunities to catch five minutes with someone to find out how they are and what they've been up to.
Christine shares with us about her work supporting retired people through volunteering with U3A, learning new skills in lockdown, and the blessings of a first grandchild.
Each year a contingent from St. Mary's travels to Birmingham for the annual Open Doors Standing Strong conference, featuring interviews, talks and stories from Christians from around the world who are persecuted for their faith.
This year Standing Strong will take place online, with news from Syria, Nigeria and China and footage direct from Open Doors' partners around the world.
Open Doors says "Join us on Saturday 3 October as we pray, learn and worship together with our persecuted family and find out how their courageous faith can strengthen us all."
This week Bekah is setting you a challenge to help her get to know you all better. So put on your creative caps and draw a picture of you or you and your family, surrounded by drawings of your favourite things.
Bekah has sent a drawing of her and her favourite things for you to see as well.
Looking forward to next year, we are hoping to attend New Wine as normal. However, New Wine is also running "Luminosity at Sixty One", which is an event specifically for 11-18’s. This is slightly different from the usual set-up, in that we stay as a youth group and camp in the Luminosity Youth Village. This runs from the 5th-8th August so directly follows on from New Wine.
If you could let me know if Luminosity at Sixty One is something your child/children would be interested in that would be fantastic.
So if you're aged 11 - 18 your options are:
Go to LUMINOSITY at United B on 30th July – 4th August 2021 with your family
Go to LUMINOSITY at Sixty One 5th – 8th August 2021 with your youth group
The New Wine Flash sale finishes on 3oth September.
Everyone has questions about what life is all about. We believe that everyone should have a chance to share those questions, explore the Christian faith and give their point of view.
Alpha is a place where you can ask those questions in an honest, friendly and open environment.
In recent months at St Mary's, God has been extending our vision to serve the town in an exciting, ambitious and creative way at a time of substantially increasing need for many within our community...
So many people in our community feel the weight of debt, and we are passionate about helping to release anyone we can from a life sentence of debt and poverty. At St Mary's we are working with Christians Against Poverty to bring good news, hope and freedom. If you need support, we'd love to hear from you.