I was intrigued to read Peter Rayson’s recent minister’s message about Advent in the Perrymount Road Methodist magazine. He contrasts the different approaches of the two popular TV murder mysteries, Midsomer Murders and Columbo. In the first, you have to watch out for the clues and you are kept in suspense until the final denouement, when all is revealed. But in the second, you know from the start “whodunit”, and the fun is watching bumbling old Columbo work out what we already know and catch the murderer.
Peter’s point was that one approach concentrates on the journey and the other on the destination and these give us a clue as to how we live our lives and how we should keep these approaches in tension. If we concentrate too much on the destination, we take our eyes off the here and now. But if we focus too much on the journey, we lose sight of the ultimate destination.
Advent is a time of anticipation: we look forward to the celebration of Christmas, but much more to the return of the Lord Jesus. As Christians we are to live day by day in the here and now, but with the confident expectation of Christ’s personal return in glory and our ultimate destination. Far from leading us to put our feet up, the Christian hope spurs us on to work tirelessly for the Kingdom of God in obedience to the Lord’s command.
May you have a joyful and expectant Advent!
In John 15:15, Jesus tells His Disciples: “I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.”
With a little editing, these words can give us an acronym and the name of the after-school club run by All Saints on Wednesdays at Lindfield Primary Academy.
JAFFA can stand for: Jesus, A Friend For All - and this is the message which the team made up of John Barling, Nigel Britton, Janet Goodenough, Tim Osborn, Roger Seymour and Judith Smith seeks to bring weekly to 28 children in Years 2 to 6.
The emphasis at JAFFA is on having fun while sharing our faith with the youngsters. A typical session starts with them unwinding from the school day with a snack, chatting and craft in a small group. We then play party games altogether before a Bible talk. This term’s theme is Jesus’s teaching in the Parables. After the talk, the children return to their small groups to complete a worksheet. Before we know it, it’s already 4.00pm and home time. It’s amazing how much we pack into a session!
It’s a privilege that All Saints is made so welcome in our local school.
Please would you pray that these children will come to know Jesus for themselves as their friend?
Today we commemorate the contribution of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women in the two World Wars and later conflicts. But why were these conflicts fought? What is it that causes war? Some say religion, others say politics, whether it's nationalism, communism, imperialism, or more individual greed or pride. Often it's lots of these reasons and more.
In his letter, the Apostle James asked that very question - "What causes war among you?" His answer - because we love the world more than we love God.
Every war in history was a war of religion, a war caused by people loving the world more than God. Of course it's easy to point the finger in history, but this is the same war which plays out in each of our hearts: desires which battle between love for God and love for the world. What causes war? We do.
When Jesus says: "Blessed are the peacemakers," he's not speaking of aspiring Nobel prize winners, he's talking about people like you and me who seek peace with God and to bring God's peace to others.
True peace comes, both in our hearts and in the world when we start loving God more than we love the world.
Euphemism (yoo-fuh-miz-uh m) - the substitution of a mild, indirect, or vague expression for one thought to be offensive, harsh, or blunt.
Isn't that what Stewardship is - just a euphemism for "please give us your money"? Over the next few weeks at All Saints we will indeed be asking each person who belongs here to consider what they might give of themselves to support the ministry of All Saints, thinking of how we can use our gifts, time and money. But it's not really about the money.
In any given place in the UK, less than 10% of people regularly attend a church, which means in Lindfield around 5,000, and in Haywards Heath over 25,000 people aren't committed to a local church. Across the world 42% of the population (3.1 billion) are defined as 'unreached' - they don't even have access to a Christian church. We face a task unfinished to reach not only our own community, but the nations too. We long for people to meet Jesus and find life in Him.
It's not about the money - but it is about the mission.
Please do take a Stewardship pack and prayerfully consider how you can respond - of course effective mission is not without financial cost. We'd love you to partner with us as we seek to follow Jesus and join in His Mission to share His Good News with the world.
So what is Tiger Arts role within All Saints?
Simply put we look after the arts ministry, seeking to promote more of God's created world through the talents He has given us.
In 2017 we aim to continue organising music, drama, literary, dramatic and art exhibitions within the context of an active worshipping and witnessing church.
Half of the lunchtime programme is in place, five of which are new to Lindfield including two schools namely Seaford College from Petworth and Roedean Girls School from Brighton.
The Good Friday Sacred concert will include three works, Bach's Out of the Deep and Christ Lay in the Bonds of Death and Stainer’s Crucifixion, featuring the New Sussex Singers, All Saints Orchestra and soloists.
The Saturday evening programmes to date will include Lancing College music students, Saltmine Theatre Co presenting Darkness Falls, Stuart Townend, Rhos Welsh Male Voice Choir with special guest Elin Manahan Thomas, and the Merry Opera Co presenting a dramatised version of Handel's Messiah.
Since the departure of Jonathan Robinson I am delighted to say that John Mummery has agreed to join the Tiger Arts team.
We look forward to your support during the New Year. Peter Ford
On Sunday 30 October, from 3.00-5.00pm, we are holding a light party for all children and families - from pre-school age upwards. We will have lots of fun activities in the Tiger hall, stable and Tiger lounge from 3.00-4.00pm when we move into the church for a time of singing together as we celebrate Jesus being the Light of the World.
As at all parties, there will also be some food and at the end do expect a balloon or two!
This is a great opportunity to invite your friends and there will be activities for all ages, so please pray about who you can invite to come along.
There will be much to do on the day with setting up, helping (and enjoying!) the party and clearing up afterwards before our evening Cornerstone service, so please do let me know if you are able to help in any way. Thank you.
Finally, please pray for this event. Pray that many will come along and hear about Jesus, and may we all shine bright as we show God’s love and to those around us.
Look forward to seeing you there.
To God be the Glory!
This September we returned to Caminul Felix with two teams to help build a new home for Mihai and Ema.
We managed to complete the outside of the house within two weeks, which was a great testimony to all the hard work of the team members.
It is really rewarding to see a pile of wood turn into a house over such a short period of time. But much more than that, to meet, work and talk with those who will be living there and see the excitement as their new home takes shape.
A huge thank you to all of you who gave so generously towards this project and to those who gave up their time to work in Romania.
As Mihai and Ema start to pay back the cost of their home, the money will be reinvested into new homes for the next generation of children growing up at Caminul Felix.
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