Friday, 26 May 2017

Wrath – Hope – Peace

A group of cyclists led by the 75-year-old minister, Revd Robert de Berry are cycling the 750 mile route from Cape Wrath in Scotland, via the Hope Valley to Peacehaven in Sussex. They are doing this to raise awareness of, and support, two organisations, Release International and Christian Solidarity Worldwide. Both are committed to raise awareness of the problem of hundreds of people worldwide (many being Christians) who are imprisoned simply for practising their faith and to intercede for their release.

The group is staying overnight in Leicester on 8 June. There will be a meeting at St Paul’s at 7.30 p.m. when they will be explaining their ride and publicising the problem of people who are not allowed to practice their faith.
Christian Solidarity Worldwide is one of the charities already supported by St Paul’s and it will be good to have this possibility of supporting their actions.

Thy Kingdom Come

Under the title of “Thy Kingdom Come,” the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, is inviting Christians around the world to pray as one for people to know Jesus Christ. The prayer events, which will differ widely from church to church will take place between Ascension (25 May) and Pentecost (4 June.)
This event first took place last year, but this year is being extended both internationally and to other denominations. St Pauls intends to take a full part with a programme of prayer related activities.
25 May: Prayer stations at St Peter’s Church 12.00midday - 5.00pm
27 May: Prayer on the Parade at Tippets florist 10.00am - 12.00midday
29 May: Indoor Prayer Labyrinth at St Paul’s 4.00pm – 8.00pm
4 June: Family Messy Prayer Event at St Peter's 4.00pm - 5.30pm
4 June ‘Praying together for Oadby’ at St Paul’s 6.30pm

During this time of prayer St Paul's will be opened every day between 4-5pm for people to come along and pray. Resources are available to help you to pray.
On Monday a prayer labyrinth will be laid out in church.
On Sunday 4th June at 6.30pm we will be hosting 'Praying together for Oadby', a chance for us all to come together to pray for our town.
Do join in with this global wave of prayer, particularly praying that many would come to know Jesus.

Prayer Walking

On Sunday we encouraged people to go prayer walking and what lovely weather we have had for it! We put up a map of the parish and printed off names of all the roads. Gillian preached on the subject giving practical pointer, listen to her sermon here.
People then took a few road names and have walked and prayed for all those who live there. May those prayers bear much fruit in our community.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

There's always hope...

This week Lou and I have been into Manor High School, sharing the message of Pentecost with over 900 young people. A reminder that we celebrate God’s love and invitation for everyone, the invitation is universal, the response is personal but even the most surprising “outsiders” aren’t outside God’s love. We shared this story to show God in action in this truth. We have shared this video during the assembly.
It was well received by the staff and students and we hope and pray that they will have taken something away with them this week.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Our Churchwarden is Legal!

Most churches have two Churchwardens, but due to a legal quirk in the way that this parish was set up, at St Paul's, we have only one, Vivien James, who is assisted by a Deputy, Paul Webster. The election of a Churchwarden is for a one-year term and Vivien was re-elected at the recent Annual Parish Meeting. Before officially being admitted to the office, Vivien had to attend a service, which was held yesterday. Led by the Archdeacon, it was a service of worship, but which also included the following legal elements.

In the Archdeacon's Charge, he explained the role of a churchwarden, as follows:
“The office of Churchwarden is an ancient one, dating from the early middle ages. As officers of the Bishop, and members of the Parochial Church Council, Churchwardens are charged with co-operating with the incumbent, and leading the laity in the promotion of the mission and ministry of the church in the local parish.
In doing so, Churchwardens offer a ministry of welcome and pastoral care to church members and their parish priest and the priest's family.
In Churchwardens is vested the property in the plate, ornaments and other moveable goods of the church, of which they are asked to maintain an inventory and report on them annually to the Bishop and Parochial church Council.
They are also asked to maintain order and decency in the church, especially during public worship.
It is to this important ministry that you have been elected at your annual parish meeting.”

In the presence of the Diocesan Registrar , a legal officer, the churchwardens present, including Vivien,  were asked to stand and make the following declaration:
“I solemnly and sincerely declare
Before God and his people
That I will faithfully and diligently
Discharge the duties of my office
For the parish in which I have been chosen
During the period of my appointment
Calling at all times on the strength that God gives me.”

To which the Registrar responded:
“On behalf of the Bishop, I admit you to the office of Churchwarden to serve in your respective parishes during the coming year.”

We will be praying for Vivien as she seeks to carry out this commitment.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Welcome Stephen Catriona and Hannah

The Parish of Oadby – St Peter’s and St Paul’s churches – have supported the worldwide Anglican Mission organisation CMS (Church Mission Society) for many years. The previous partner, Jane Jerrard, has now retired from CMS, and we now have a new link with Stephen and Catriona Bennett.

 After introducing themselves at St Peter’s morning service they came on to St Paul’s and showed a few slides and spoke about their intended work. Stephen is a consultant surgeon from Fife and Catriona a consultant anaesthetist. In August they will be going out to work at the Mission Hospital of Gahini in Rwanda. Stephen will be the only surgeon there, but expects to be able to share his surgical skill with other doctors. Catriona will be working part-time (Hannah is a baby) and she hopes to increase the expertise of the anaesthetic nurses and undertake complex anaesthetics. Their presence will support the witness of this church hospital in showing God’s love to the community around.

After service they mingled with the congregation, answering people’s questions and then went on to an open lunch in one of the congregation’s homes, where we were able to get to know them better and hear more of their hopes and plans.

We look forward to supporting them both financially and in prayer, and in any other practical ways that we can.

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Bicycle Pilgrimage

On 8th June St Paul's is delighted to be hosting Robert's Bike Pilgrimage as it makes its way from Cape Wrath through the Hope Valley to Peace Haven. Find out more here.
We will be praying with Robert and the team for the persecuted church at 7.30pm on 8th June at St Paul's.

Friday, 5 May 2017

An update from our Connected Church

We have recently received an update from PAG, our Tearfund Connected Church in Uganda. To read it click here.

We are asked to pray for them:
  • We need to increase our capacity if we are effectively going to introduce PEP to all churches in our denomination. Please pray for God’s provision of staff, finances and skills, and pray for God’s anointing on every one of us involved.
  • Please pray for our neighboring countries who are in times of great turmoil. Pray for peace: their peace is our peace.
  • Pray, as always, for relief from the drought. Pray for protection, sustenance, and for more and more creative solutions to protect people from the impacts of no rain to be found.