A Holy Activity

November is a time for remembrance and reflection. On Remembrance Sunday, 14th Nov, at 10.30am we will gather as a church family to pay tribute to those who have sacrificed so much for our freedom and we will pray for peace. At 6.30pm we have a time of thanksgiving for loved ones. I hope you’ll be able to join us.

But can I encourage you also to use this season of remembering to prayerfully look back at these last 2 years? A lot has changed and no-one, no family, no institution has been unaffected and the church and our church are no exception.

Do you remember how you felt during that first lockdown? Life, as I remember it, seemed utterly and suddenly surreal – empty shelves, face masks, social distancing, school closures, over-whelmed hospitals, furlough schemes, quiet roads, cruise ships in the Bay, one walk a day, a new thing called Zoom, rainbows in our windows, clapping on our doorsteps, the church being closed, online services etc. etc. I remember regular moments where I thought, ‘Am I dreaming?!’ Enough time has passed to mean that some of those things now just seem normal.

I expect it will take years to fully piece together and realise what all this has meant for the church. Much has changed and the dust is settling – both literally and metaphorically. Change evokes a range of reactions and it’s so healthy to take those reactions honestly to God in prayer. So take some time this month to get honest with God about what you’ve been through, what you’re going through and how you’re feeling. Please also reflect on our church – on what’s changed and where God is leading us.

As you do there may be some sadness. In our church family there are dear friends we have lost – we miss them – church just isn’t quite the same without them. Other changes have been introduced and you may well miss some of the old ways of doing things. But there are reasons for joy and thanks too. There is an exciting sense of newness and renewal – not just in the building but in the family too. The building is much improved and ready for mission. And praise God that many people have joined the church family – and we rejoice in the sense of growth and renewal that we are experiencing.

So whether you have been part of St John’s for many decades or just a few days – we are so glad that you’re here with us. Welcome and Welcome Back.

The Bible calls us to remember often enough that we could rightly call it a holy activity. So as we remember on November 11 pray that you’ll know God’s peace and comfort as you look back and also his anointing and joy as you look forward.

With love

COP26 Day of Action

Back in the late 60’s and early 70’s, a new level of awareness was prompted by the earthrise photo of our planet – the first from space to reveal both its beauty and fragility. The image was accompanied by the quote: ‘And God called the dry land Earth. God saw that it was good’.

These experiences of viewing our world with new eyes raised awareness of the need to protect and conserve the natural world. And so, the organisations of Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and later the Green Party were formed. Sadly, although the message came from Genesis, Christians have been all too slow in grasping these initiatives.

Now is our moment. At Church we in the Eco-Team, along with many others, are seeking to raise awareness of ways in which we can, as individuals and together as a church, ensure we prevent further damage to this wonderful world, this precious gift from God.

The climate crisis is growing more urgent each day and we are on course for catastrophic global temperature rises that will put millions of lives at risk. While no one can escape the impacts of these crises, those who have done least to cause them suffer the most. Across the world, the poorest people and communities of colour are all too often those bearing the brunt of the climate crisis – from coastal villages in Norfolk whose sea-defences are eroding faster than ever, to people living by the Niger Delta rivers blackened by oil spillage. We know this is not God’s plan and we can help change this. As Christians, and churches, we are all called to play our part. The solutions that we need to survive and to build a more just and fairer world can only be brought about through collective action and coordination, ranging from local communities to international organisations.

On 6 November 2021, as world leaders meet in Glasgow for the COP26 Global Climate Summit, towns and cities across the world will take to the streets demanding global climate justice across the world. A mass mobilisation is being organised, bringing together a wide range of movements to urge governments to act swiftly and to do more.

Here in Weymouth as part of the Global Day of Action for Climate Justice, there will be an event which offers the opportunity to stand alongside others in a united expression of concern.

MEET:

12 noon at Weymouth Pavilion,
The Esplanade, Weymouth DT4 8ED. Pavilion Car Park for rally and speeches.

MARCH:

1pm leave from Weymouth Pavilion.

This is being organised by The Dorset COP 26 Coalition which is supported by Tearfund, Christian Climate Action, Stand Up to Racism Dorset, CommUnity Bike Rides Weymouth, Dorset Trades Union Council, Unite Southwest Region, XR – Dorset, Portland 4 The Planet, Dorset Climate Action Network, Dorset Community Assemblies.

Why not JOIN IN?

This is a day to stand up and be counted. At long last we have an opportunity as Christians to demonstrate our conviction that ‘The earth is The Lord’s and everything in it’. Psalm 24:1.

We can show our concern for this amazing God-created planet and alongside others, work to show that God’s creation needs our active protection NOW. Our children’s and grandchildren’s future wellbeing depends on it.

If you would like to participate – please contact Val Collings to register your interest in being part of the St. John’s Group.

Adapted by Sally Horrell from articles by Tearfund and the COP26 Coalition.

The call has gone out to our parishes to join churches across the country sounding the alarm of the climate and ecological emergency. Churches are being asked to ring their bell or bells at 6.00pm on Saturday 30th October to coincide with the beginning of COP26, possibly the most critical global climate conference in history.

(This article and more appeared in the latest Grapevine, The Diocese’s newsletter)

Volunteers Needed

Cooks Required
Every now and then someone in our fellowship may be ill, have an accident or find it hard to cope. When that happens other people step forward to provide meals for a short period of time to help them through the crisis.

Diane Blackwell is keeping a list of people who are willing to provide these meals on an ad hoc basis.

Welcome Team

If you would like to be a welcomer at Church and be included on the rota please let June Faulkner know.

If you have been a welcomer in the past and would like to continue, June would also like to hear from you.

Many thanks to those people who have already volunteered.

Sunday 9am/10.30am services

If you would like to be on the rota for leading the prayers or Bible reading please let Linda Miles know.

National Anti-Bullying Week 2021

National Anti-Bullying Week 2021, which is organised by the Anti-Bullying Alliance, will be taking place from Monday 15th – Friday 19th November 2021 and the theme is One Kind Word.

https://anti-bullyingalliance.org.uk/anti-bullying-week

We have been invited and are looking forward to, raising awareness of bullying, within local schools, YMCA in Bournemouth, and The West Australia Prison Service.

We will talk about what bullying is and isn’t, how to deal with relational aggression and the long-term impact of bullying upon health outcomes. We encourage you to pay particular attention, throughout the year, on sharing kind words.

Our world can seem a very critical & negative place, at times, but we can change that one word at a time.

Words are so very powerful, the old adage ‘sticks and stones may break our bones, but words will never hurt me’ is so untrue.

This is a more accurate version of the poem, with the impact of words that hurt: Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can also hurt me. Stones and sticks break only skin, while words are ghosts that haunt me.

The words we use can make an enormous and lasting difference to people’s lives. Dorset Anti-Bullying service has a particular aim to support adults who have been affected by bullying at any time. This is because bullying can have a lifelong affect and impact upon adults physical and mental health and there are many organisations who support children and young people.

What is Bullying?

There is no legal definition of bullying, but it is usually defined, as repeated behaviour which is intended, to hurt someone. either emotionally or physically and where there is an imbalance of power.

Bullying is divided into four basic types of abuse – emotional (sometimes called relational), verbal, physical, and cyber.

If you or somebody you know would benefit from talking to us, please pass on our details.

Alison Fox

Diamond Wedding Anniversary of John and Tessa

We would like to thank everyone for their cards, kind words and messages of congratulations we
received on our recent celebration of our Diamond Wedding Anniversary, all of which kept us feeling very blessed and loved. God Bless You all! It was a really good time as we celebrated first with our church family and then on the actual day with our own dear family.

Below is the testimony that John shared in the morning service on 3rd October.

I want to share with you all just what St John’s means to me, and how it has been such a big part of my life.

We used to sing the chorus, ‘Yesterday, today, forever, Jesus is the same; all may change but Jesus never, Glory to His Name’.

When I think of my ‘Yesterdays’ – my growing up years within this church, I give thanks for all who taught me, encouraged me, prayed with me and helped me grow and mature in my faith, most of whom are now ‘In Glory’. I especially want to mention here Rev. Jameson who had such a great influence on me – such a gentle, gracious man, full of the The Holy Spirit. I owe much to his godly ministry. He retired from St John’s just before we got married but returned to give the address at our wedding service.

Through work, I met Tessa. We fell in love and were married here on 7th October 1961 by Rev Parkins. This was followed by the birth of our two sons, Mark and Simon, who were both baptised here as babies and grew up in the life of this church. Through the years we worked and served together in so many aspects of Church life, especially in evangelism and the ‘Church Plant’ at the Park Church but also in our business life together, running the shoe shop on Lodmoor Hill for 23 years until our retirement in 2004.

My ‘Todays’ – Since retiring from work we have continued to serve and be involved in the life of St John’s. Then Covid hit and lockdown happened and it’s been such a difficult 18 months for us all. Now there seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel with things starting up again in a newly refurbished church building, new ideas, new patterns of services and many new folk joining us – very exciting times!

My ‘Forevers’ – As we age we find that life becomes more of a struggle but because we have proved God’s faithfulness and provision over 60 years of married life, with its ups and downs, its highs and lows, the ever changing scenes and seasons of life, we know that we can trust God for the days ahead, whatever they may bring, secure in the knowledge that our eternal destiny lies with Him in heaven proving the words of that old chorus ‘All may change but Jesus never, Glory to His Name’.

Lots of precious memories of people and events that will remain with us forever.

Food Bank

The call on Food Bank services is increasing and is likely to grow even further. There is a box for donations at the back of church, together with some suggested shopping lists (see below). Even one item a week would be greatly appreciated.

Food Bank will also be providing Christmas hampers which will contain festive foods and small gifts for each member of the family. Any help with these items would be appreciated, especially small gifts for men which tend to be in short supply.

  • Biscuits and snack bars
  • Breakfast cereal
  • Coffee
  • Empty egg boxes (no eggs please)
  • Instant mash potato
  • Milk (UHT or powder)
  • Pasta sauce
  • Rice
  • Soup
  • Spaghetti
  • Squash
  • Sugar
  • Tinned meat; fish; vegetables and fruit  Tinned or carton rice pudding/custard  Toilet rolls
  • Sturdy plastic bags
The Bible Society

The first Bible society was established in the UK in 1779, to distribute Bibles to soldiers and seamen. Nowadays it is working in over 200 countries to bring the Bible to every man, woman and child.

The operation is based on the belief that “…when people engage with the Bible, lives can be changed for good.”

Towards the end of His life, Jesus gave the disciples special instructions, known as The Great Commission. This is to be found in Matthew 28: 16-20. Verse 19: “…go and make disciples of all nations…”

The Bible Society seeks to help fulfil this by printing Bibles, translating them and distributing them throughout the world.

In many countries, such as China, there is a dire shortage of Christian Ministers, with only one to several thousand people, but people can come to faith by reading and studying God’s Word. To do this, it is important for them to be able to read and also to be able to have their own copy of the Bible, in a language which they can understand.

The Bible Society magazine, Word in Action, is full of testimonies from around the world and information about global, national and local programmes, which help to promote Bible production, translation, distribution and study. The Bible Society is a non-profit making organisation and is a registered charity.

For further information contact:

Bible Society, Stonehill Green, Westlea, SWINDON, SN5 7DG.
Web: bible society.org.uk

The cost of translating, distributing and printing one Bible a month is around £5. The ‘Bible a Month’ scheme enables a monthly direct debit to change someone’s life for good every month!

Val Collings

Prayer for the Bible Society

Dear Lord Jesus.

We thank you for your Word and the comfort and blessings it brings us.

Forgive us where we have abused the privilege of being able to access the Bible in our own language, by neglecting to read it and meditate on it and through that, to listen to you.

We thank you for the tireless work of the Bible Society across the world, often in the face of persecution, war, and poor infrastructure. We ask that you strengthen, guide and protect all those called by you to work in this charitable organisation, by the power of the Holy Spirit.
We pray for the continued generous support of this worthy organisation, despite the difficult times we are in and we pray for your continued blessings on it.

We ask all these things in your precious Name.

Amen.

November Diary

Wed 3rd
9am Morning Prayer St.J
10am -12.30pm Open Church St.J

Fri 5th
10am Pot Luck Lunch Club PCC

Sun 7th
9am Morning Worship St.J
10.30am Holy Communion St.J

Wed 10th
9.30am Little Fishes St.J
9am Morning Prayer St.J
10am -12.30pm Open Church St.J

Fri 12th
10am Pot Luck Lunch Club PCC

Sun 14th
10.30am All Age Rembrance Service St.J
6.30pm Time to Remember: A service of thanksgiving St.J

Mon 15th
9.30am LittleFishes St.J

Wed 17th
9am Morning Prayer St.J
10am -12.30pm Open Church St.J

Fri 19th
10am Pot Luck Lunch Club PCC

Sun 21st
9am Morning Worship St.J
10.30am Morning Worship St.J

Mon 22nd
9.30am Little Fishes St.J

Wed 24th
9am Morning Prayer St.J
10am -12.30pm Open Church St.J

Fri 26th
10am Pot Luck Lunch Club PCC

Sun 28th
9am Holy Communion St.J
10.30am Morning Worship St.J

Mon 29th
9.30amLittleFishes St.J St.J – St John’s PCC – Park Church Centre

December Dates for your Diary

Friday 3rd December
7.30pm Create for Christmas

Sunday 12th December
4pm Carols at Park Church

Saturday 18th December
6pm Christmas Party

Sunday 19th December
4pm Pop Up Nativity

Tuesday 21st December
5pm Open Air Carols

Friday 24th December
6pm Christmas Carol Service
11.30pm Midnight Communion

Saturday 25th December
10.30am Christmas Day Celebration

Who’s Who?

Vicar
Rev Tom Coopey

Wardens
Roger Welch
Jos Bailey

Next month’s issue

Many thanks to all our writers. Please submit articles (of less than 300 words), dates or information to Linda and Michael Miles before 20th November. Articles may be edited.

The views and opinions expressed are those of the contributors.

Menu