Weekly News for 5 August

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.

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Communion during this time

In these unprecedented times, we are working hard to find imaginative solutions in a landscape that has been rapidly changing. Sometimes we get things right, and sometimes we miss the mark. I apologise that this has been the case regarding communion.

For those of you who have received wafers in a parcel, we would ask that you either consume them, or put them somewhere safe to bring back once we are able to be together again.

We are going to be sending out a new order of service for use during this time as either a simple service of the word or, on occasion, to help us to share an Agape meal together.

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