Weekly Email w/b 21st November 2022
“Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God.”
What a joy it was to read those words from Isaiah 40 this week at our Ministry Leaders’ prayers! Tempted as I was, I didn’t sing them but, as I read, I could hear Handel’s Messiah playing in my head and, with it, feel the excitement of Advent being close, and Christmas just round the corner.
There’s lots to do, of course, before we get there. Lots of things to gather together! But, through it all, we have a wonderful story to tell, and the annual pageant around Christmas is something that our whole society joins in – buying, cooking, quaffing, singing.
There was a lot of preparation that took place for the very first Christmas too. Prophets foretold Christ’s birth over hundreds of years – something that we now appreciate in hindsight – and sing about year by year. But before we start Advent, we have a moment to pause, to take a deep breath, and realign ourselves in our week of prayer 24-7. Spending time with the One who came to “….feed his flock like a shepherd”, “… to gather the lambs in his arms”, “… to carry them close to his heart”, “…. and gently lead those that are with young.“
Jesus said: “Come to me, all you who are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.” What an invitation!
Revd Valerie Pitt
P.S. Read on for various autumnal snippets from leaf clearing to curry eating, as well as our first mention of Carols by Candlelight and your chance to join in the choir / orchestra of angels. We’ve also got some great news about an international musician coming back to Meole Brace in January.
Our 24-7 prayer week finishes this Sunday. It’s been such a privilege to see different people from across our family at Trinity come along and pray in the room, as well as praying at home during the evenings and nights. What a joy to be praying for God’s light and love for our world, our community, our church and ourselves. Thank you so much to Cherry, Rachel, Charles and others for stunning work on setting up the room.
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Meanwhile it’s also Advent Sunday. Phil Cansdale will be speaking at our morning services at Holy Trinity, whilst Robert Parsons will be speaking at the 1030am celebration at Christ the King. Trinity Kids and Pathfinders will be meeting in their usual way, and we look forward to Anon getting involved in serving in various different roles in the usual manner.
In the evening service Phil Cansdale will be speaking on the final instalment of “Questions Jesus Asked.” We meet from 6.15pm in the Trinity Centre for refreshments and time together.
We are thrilled that Jonathan Veira is going to be with us on Saturday 28th January at 7.30pm. He is an amazingly talented and versatile international singer and musician. His last visit here was January in 2020, and we are so excited that he’s coming back to Meole Brace for his latest tour.
From Billy Joel to Mozart to everything in between, it promises to be an evening of ballads, blues, rock and roll, jazz, and even a bit of opera thrown in. Jonathan is larger than life in so many different ways, has a real gift for talking about life and faith in the most engaging of ways.
Tickets are £10 from the Church Office or website. All profits from the concert will go towards our “Cost of Living” fund supporting individuals, households and dedicated projects at church and across the local community.
An evening with Jonathan Veira – 28th Jan 2023
We are now seven weeks or so into our Blessed to be a Blessing initiative, responding to some of the many needs in our communities as well as our church finances. This weekend feels like the “end of the beginning” as it were, as the initial date which we invited people to be making a response by. If you have been thinking about “getting round to responding” then here’s your gentle reminder. You can do so on paper via the Church Office, or perhaps easier online at www.trinitychurches.org/blessed.
This week we had the second of our “Blessed to be a Blessing” warm spaces in the Meet Place on the Meole Estate. Thank you to all those involved in this in various ways. Food share, Bacon Buddies, a soup lunch, and drop-in on the way home from school. These are important ways in which we want to be loving, listening and serving people locally.
Meanwhile one of the other conversations at the moment is reaching out to those who are working from home and looking to be somewhere warmer over these next months? At the Trinity Centre we have an amazing building in beautiful surroundings, with great IT and no shortage of coffee. We’d look to cover some costs, but it’s certainly not all about the money. We reckon that our building is an amazing gift of God, and want to put it to good use. Would this be a good conversation for you, or anyone else you know? Be in touch!
We’re gearing up for our two “Carols by Candlelight” services, this year taking place on Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th December at 7pm. After freezing conditions outdoors last year (thanks to COVID) we are looking forward to a warm welcome in more ways than one this year as hundreds of people respond to the “great invitation” of Christmas.
We’re looking for people to join in with our choir, and our orchestra. The choir of angels will be learning two lovely choir pieces, as well as joining in with everyone else with the main carols. And the orchestra is for people of all ages and all stages, and will be accompanying the congregation in the usual well known carols.
There are practices for both the choir and the orchestra coming up over the next few weeks. Find out more by clicking below, or chat to Judith Clarkson (orchestra) or Elly Hughes and Valerie Pitt (choir).
The Tearfund Big Quiz Night takes place this Saturday, 7pm in Radbrook Community Centre. Come along for an evening of fun and joy for young people and adults alike! Bring your own snacks* and drinks.
Tearfund is a Christian charity that partners with churches in more than 50 of the world’s poorest countries. They tackle poverty through sustainable development, responding to disasters, and challenging injustice. They believe an end to extreme poverty is possible.
Talking of autumn leaves, our annual Leaf Clearing Morning takes place on 26th November at 10am. Last year we had about thirty people of all ages come along and help, and everything got done quickly, efficiently and with a lot of fun! Could you join us this year? If you’ve got a wheelbarrow and rake you could bring with you that would be great. We’ll meet in the Churchyard. Speak to a warden or the Church Office for more details.
An Advent “Trinity Men” event at the Third Place in Frankwell for an eat-all-you-can buffet. You’ll find an array of delicious starters, main courses, sundries and desserts. They’ve even offered a ‘proper hot’ curry option for the vicar! We’ll finish around 10pm. Our guest speaker for the evening is Pat Aldred. When not cruising around the world Pat has many years experience as an army chaplain, and is currently based at Shrewsbury Abbey.
We’re asking people to book tickets and to pay online. Or you can phone the Church Office and pay in that way if easier.
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