Weekly Email w/b 6th February 2023
“The scenes from this disaster are heartbreaking.” So wrote the CEO of Christian Aid a couple of days ago, speaking of the aftermath of the earthquake in Turkey and NW Syria. It’s not easy to get our head round the magnitude of what has taken place, given many, many thousands of men, women and children have died or been injured. We see what feels like the miracle of people rescued from the rubble. But it does seem that as time goes this miracle will be played out fewer and fewer times.
I saw a remarkable video today on the Open Doors website. It is of Syrian Christians who found refuge in a church, and joined together to sing. There’s no electricity, so they’re using the light of their mobile phones to see the words. The lyrics are beautiful but heart-rending in the light of what they have suffered.
“Our land is thirsty, it’s filled with wounds, the flood of Your love will heal her, the touch of Your hand will fix and restore it, back to Yourself, this is our hope in You our Lord.”
Would you stand together in hope and love with local communities like this in Turkey and Syria. Join with them in prayer for all affected, whether injured, trapped, traumatised or grieving. And would you continue to consider how you might be generous towards this desperate cause? As a PCC we’ve today given £1,000 from our “Mission, Relief and Development Committee” towards the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) working with charities on the ground.
Grace and peace
Phil Cansdale (Vicar)
This Sunday we’re meeting as usual across the four congregations at Trinity, as well as continuing to serve our neighbouring parish of Belle Vue. Phil Cansdale will be speaking at the 9am and Belle Vue gatherings, whilst Valerie Pitt is our speaker at CTK. The 11am service will be an all-ages celebration hosted by the team.
In the evening we’ll be on week six of “Made for Relationship” as Fi Iddon opens up the theme of identity. These are obviously topical issues to be reflecting around and looking at, and if you don’t usually come to the evening service but would like to join in you are most welcome to do so. Or to catch up with the sermon audio at a later date. Look below for some further resources on this.
In the afternoon we’re also hosting this year’s “Marriage Launch Event”, welcoming almost all the couples who are getting married at Trinity this year. Do pray for them please, for both the hopes of an amazing wedding day and more importantly a vision for a life of love together into the future. And pray for the team here who get involved in all things-wedding…
You may have seen today’s (Thursday) decision by General Synod to enable same-sex couples to come to church after a civil marriage or civil partnership to give thanks, dedicate their relationship to God and receive God’s blessing. These next days will give greater time and space to unpack something of what this means, how to keep in step with the Spirit – and with each other – when there are some significant disagreements and potential splits in the life of the Church of England. Please do pray for all of us involved in these at a local, diocesan and national level.
Here at Trinity we continue to build up a suite of resources online, including recording of last week’s talk by Phil Cansdale on ‘sex and sexuality.’ We’re also hosting an informal Q&A session around these themes on Sunday 19th February. We’ll have the evening service as usual 6.30pm till 7.45pm, and then after a brief break those who would like to can meet to continue the conversation, listen to each other, and reflect together.
As February continues we wanted to give a brief update on “Blessed to be a Blessing.
Thanks to the Cost of Living Fund we’ve thus far been able to give nearly £2,500 to local individuals and households in need. We’re working with ongoing contacts within toddler groups, work on the Meole estate, and the wider community of Meole Brace and Radbrook Green alongside partnering with local schools. We’re very aware that we can’t do everything for everyone, but it has been a joy to do something for those we can, and showing grace and support to those who find themselves in particular need. Thankyou.
Meanwhile the minutes of our last PCC include the phrase “God has done something remarkable in the past few months“. They go on to describe a significant increase in income at the end of 2022 , resulting in a small surplus at the end of the year and plans for a ‘balanced budget’ in 2023. As a PCC we are very aware of the amazing generosity of so many people, and how this means that we can plan boldly, creatively and prayerfully over these next months. Thankyou again.
There’s something really important about finding ways of saying “count me in” to God and to the life of the Church. We’d love to help people to do that. On Easter Day (9th April) we’re offering a chance for adults / young people to be baptised or to renew their baptism vows. Then on Sunday 18th June Bishop Michael, the Bishop of Lichfield, will be with us with the possibility of people being confirmed.
We’ve recently updated our marketing leaflet etc at the Trinity Centre. It’s a reminder of our invitation to ‘inspirational meetings, beautiful celebrations and exceptional value’ in all that we do.
We have frozen the fee for a child’s party for the third year running, and reckon that our prices remain very competitive. And the good news is that as a church member you not only receive 10% discount on a child’s party booking (making this excellent value for money!), but also you would receive 10% on any booking you make including those you make for your workplace or leisure group.
The Trinity Centre is a wonderful venue for a retreat, staff meeting or training event so why not suggest us to your colleagues for your next gathering, and make full use of your church member discount? We also have enhanced IT capacity in the upstairs rooms (perfect for IT training), and great spaces for consultations on an ad-hoc basis (perfect if you are booking rooms in response to appointments).
More details? Call Helen Hinton on 01743 242660, or email to chat about your event. We would love to welcome you!
For many years some of us have attended the New Wine summer conference. This year – perhaps for just one year only – it’s taking place in Kent, and a group of us will be trekking down there for the second week, from Tuesday 1st to Saturday 5th August. Most of us will be staying on site, though there are options to stay elsewhere and come in each day.
It’s not too late to join in, either as a ‘punter’ or by joining the team. New Wine also promises amazing work with children and young people, and is often a spiritual highlight of the year for those who attend.
It’s been great to hear of a few people saying that they are coming… both oldtimers and first timers. Interested in coming? Want to find out more? Chat to Phil or Fi who will both be digging out their tents for another year under canvas. Please book directly with New Wine, but let us know if you’re booked so we can all camp together….
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