Graham and I enjoyed a wonderful holiday in Scotland and want to say thank you for all your blessings and kindness for our anniversary.
The rest of the team are off on holiday this coming week which does mean that things will take a little more time to get to, and some things will not be able to happen. We really appreciate your care and understanding about the importance of rest.
This coming Sunday in Holy Trinity, next to the hospital we are looking forward to welcoming Oscar and Ruby into the family of God this coming Sunday as they are baptised – please do remember them in your prayers. This is one of the great joys and privileges for us as churches, to come alongside families to help them say thank you for their children. If you would like to be more involved in this ministry, why not come along to our Baptism drop in at St Matthew’s hall this Saturday morning, 9.30-11, to find out more.
From 1-12 November COP26 will be held in Glasgow; a pivotal international gathering to address our climate crisis. In the build up to this event people of faith from all across the country will be walking to the event as pilgrims of our planet. The Western camino pilgrims will be passing through Stroud on 11th and 12th September. If you would like to be part of this inspiring act of faith, please consider offering a pilgrim a bed for the night? If you could, or if you want to find out more, please get in touch with Karen Burridge – you can find her details in the text below this video.
That same weekend we have an opportunity for a mini pilgrimage ourselves! It is Ride and Stride day, where we are encouraged to walk/ride/run between churches to raise money for Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust. 50% of money raised comes back to us and 50% is set aside for grants across the county. Graham is planning to cycle and I am planning to run to each of our churches across the team. Do you fancy joining in? Look on our website for information.
Amongst the wide range of services coming up this week we have Communion 9.30 at Whiteshill and 11am at Slad and then 11.30 next Wednesday at Holy Trinity next to the hospital. This Sunday we also have a quarter peel being rung at St Laurence followed by said Evensong at 5pm. All are welcome.
You’ll find the readings and questions to give you some food for your soul on our news page. One of our readings this Sunday is from Ephesians. I’ll sign off with some words of encouragement taken from that letter:
…be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.
May God bless you and keep you, may God’s face shine upon you and bring you rest.
It is Ride and Stride day, where we are encouraged to walk/ride/run between churches to raise money for Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust. 50% of the money raised comes back to us and 50% is set aside for grants across the county. Graham is planning to cycle and I am planning to run to each of our churches across the team. Do you fancy joining in? Find more info on our website here.
A small group (10 to 20) of pilgrims on the ‘Western Camino’ route to COP26 in Glasgow, will be passing through Stroud and stopping for two nights, 11th and 12th September, Sunday 12th being their weekly rest day. They are starting in Bristol joining with the ‘Eastern Camino’ starting in London (Welcome!) when they all get to Birmingham. They will arrive in Glasgow on 29th October, two days before COP26 opens on 31st October. Christian Climate Action has organised this pilgrimage, it is described as “a walk for everyone, initiated by Extinction Rebellion UK Faith Bridge/CCA, it is intended to be inter-faith and open to people of no faith”. A programme of events is being organised by Stroud Green Christians.
The pilgrims will be based at St Laurence Church hall while in Stroud and can sleep on the floor as they will have done for previous nights, but they would also welcome an overnight in a bed and a chance for a shower. If you are able to offer a bed for one or two people either Saturday 11th or Sunday 12th, or even to offer a shower, please contact:
Karen Burridge, email: [email protected] phone: 01453 752839
So then, putting away falsehood, let all of us speak the truth to our neighbours, for we are members of one another. Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not make room for the devil. Thieves must give up stealing; rather let them labour and work honestly with their own hands, so as to have something to share with the needy. Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you. Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.
Then the Jews began to complain about him because he said, ‘I am the bread that came down from heaven.’ They were saying, ‘Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, “I have come down from heaven”?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Do not complain among yourselves. No one can come to me unless drawn by the Father who sent me; and I will raise that person up on the last day. It is written in the prophets, “And they shall all be taught by God.” Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me. Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father. Very truly, I tell you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats of this bread will live for ever; and the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.’
The people who know Jesus from childhood want to keep him in his place.
How might the claims Jesus makes in this passage have sounded to those who had known him his whole life?
How do we respond as we witness change in those we have known for a long time?
How open are we to seeing God do a new thing in someone’s life? Even our own life?
Main Image by mnplatypus from Pixabay