February/March 2014 Banstead United Reformed Church Tidings, February/March 2014, Page
BANSTEAD UNITED REFORMED CHURCH SERVICES Our Family Worship is held every Sunday at 10.30am a crĂ¨che is provided. Sunday Club for children aged 3-17 meets at the same time, and we have a music group which meets at 10.10am. Holy Communion is normally celebrated during our morning service on the first Sunday of each month. For details of future events and important dates for your diary please see the monthly Diary Sheet or our Website: www.bansteadurc.org.uk
SERVICES ALL AT 10.30AM 2nd Feb 9th Feb 16th Feb 23rd Feb 2nd Mar 9th Mar 16th Mar 23rd Mar 30th Mar
All Age Communion led by Mrs Linda Richards Family led by Mr Stuart Dew Family Worship led by Mrs Eileen Lawlor Family Worship led by Mrs Jo Patel Communion led by Revd Nicola Furley-Smith (Moderator of Southern Synod) Family Worship led by Mrs Judith Johnson Family Worship led by Revd Dr Michael Jagessar (Moderator of General Assembly) Church Life Sunday led by the Elders Mothering Sunday led by Revd Ron Talmey
Tidings is edited by Linda Richards. 3 Breech Lane, Walton on the Hill, Tadworth, Surrey KT20 7SQ Tel 01737 813617, e-mail email@example.com Please note that for a variety of reasons it has been decided that there will be no March edition of Tidings this year. I am happy to receive your contributions, ideas and suggestions for Tidings at any time but copy for the April edition should be with me by Sunday, 23rd March at the latest. Page 2 , Tidings, February/March 2014
Our Interim Moderator writes … Dear Friends During the last few months we have been burning logs on our fire to keep warm, and yes, we do have central heating, but there is something about a good fire that’s better. The dancing flames and the smell of burning wood have a very calming and therapeutic effect but add in toasted homemade bread or crumpets dripping with butter, just makes you want to turn off the TV and lights, pull the curtains and snuggle down for some sublime rest, then our world is at peace and all is well! Years ago we used to roast chestnuts on the edge of the fire and pop some potatoes, wrapped in silver foil, into the heart of the hot cinders as a feast for our supper. Our grandchildren love us doing these things, and always ask for us to light the fire when they come to stay. No doubt this summer they will want to have a garden bonfire again so that at its end, when there is just a bed of hot glowing embers, they can toast sausages and marshmallows on long sticks. Before you think that we are reminiscing, I have to say that for us this is a regular practice for we like the simple things in life. Pleasure is to be found gathered around a garden bonfire, chatting, laughing, eating and drinking with family and friends, while the little ones are licking sticky fingers and “can we put just one more stick on the bonfire” being requested by them at regular intervals . I find these times deeply spiritual, looking deep into the fire, enjoying its warmth and the change it makes to the taste of the simplest of foods. It creates a time for reflection when the mind can become free from the worries and aggravations that, at times, beset me as a minister. I can forget the increasing legalism we face through government legislation, badly applied health and safety, Tidings, February/March 2014, Page 3
child protection etc. Wouldn’t it be nice to go back to a time when people expected HOT water from a hot tap and didn’t need a warning notice to inform us of this? Back to a time when church folk could organise a children’s event in the park, without the need for CRBs, risk assessments and third party public liability insurance. Where games had winners and we were not worried that the losers might be permanently damaged by the process of coming second. In my younger days we used to make sure everyone got the opportunity to win anyway! You know, we can get so wrapped up in the business of being a Christian and going to church, that we lose the opportunity to come closer to the flame of the Holy Spirit. To have the space to reflect and think deeper, or just to clear our mind and to give God a chance to enter and write something in that blank space we have left. That famous poem by William Davies that starts ‘What is this life if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare?’ I know you all know this poem, yet do we ever apply it to our Christianity, our church life, or even the way we do church? Could we take a few minutes out for God, when we do nothing but let God reconnect with us, or should that be the other way round? Please let’s give it a try. Warning Notice. Do not attempt to have a fire in your lounge unless you have a fireplace. Eating sausages cooked in the open is not considered to be hygienic and hot marshmallows may stick to your lips. (As if you need to be told the obvious!!) Philip Gray
NEWS FROM CATERHAM Revd. Julian Thomas will be inducted to Caterham United Reformed Church on Saturday 1st March 2014. We send him and the congregation our very best wishes and look forward to meeting him in the near future. Page 4 , Tidings, February/March 2014
CHURCH FAMILY NEWS On Sunday 6th January the whole church family was present at the commissioning of Jo Patel as an Assembly Accredited Lay Preacher. As Jo shared with us her sense of calling to the ministry there were mixed emotions as the truth struck home that she and her family were leaving Banstead to make their home in Suffolk. We have been greatly blessed by Jo’s ministry, Verity’s enthusiasm and Bim’s loyal support. We will miss them being just around the corner. Jo has resigned as a serving elder but will continue her membership of Banstead URC. We know that they will be back worshipping with us regularly in the months to come (in fact Jo will be leading our worship on 23rd February). The Patel family’s new address is The Old Guildhall, Badwell Ash, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk IP31 3DP. We wish them all, and Jo’s mother, Pam Robson, every blessing as they settle into their new home. Alan Kirby retired at the end of January. We wish him and Julie a long and happy retirement and assure him that we will find him some jobs to do! We remember Olive Worsley in our prayers as she undergoes an operation on her knee this month. We wish her a speedy recovery. Several of our members have been bereaved recently, we assure them all of our love and prayers. We extend our sympathy to the family, friends and neighbours of Tom Bulmer who died in Epsom Hospital on Christmas Day. His funeral service was held in our church on 17th January, coincidentally nineteen years to the day since that of his wife, Iris. Tom had been a member of our church since 1993 and had many friends here. Right up until his last stay in hospital Tom gained strength and comfort through attending services here as regularly as possible. It was a considerable task but he enjoyed the challenge of navigating his mobility scooter to the church. Woe betide anyone who stood in his way! Tidings, February/March 2014, Page 5
Sunday Club would like to say a huge “THANK YOU” to everyone who contributed to our Christmas Greetings board. The magnificent sum of £400 was raised to go towards a wheelchair.
We also want to say “Thank You” to Ruth H-C for making such a beautiful and eye catching display.
And thank you, Sunday Club, for putting together such a lovely service on 13th December. Every year you manage to make us all look at the Nativity story in a new way. The following week Sunday Club were busy again, this time spreading joy and Christmas spirit to the residents at Roseland and Roseacre with your carol singing. Madeline kindly drove the children and helpers in the minibus and the performances were greatly enhanced with Ian ‘tinkling at the ivories’ and of course Diane on the tambourine! The Sunday Club handed out chocolates as gifts afterwards which the residents were really pleased to receive. So thank you all.
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CHURCH FLOWERS Worried about signing up to provide the church flowers because you donâ€™t know how to arrange them? No problem - help is at hand! There are people who would be happy to arrange the flowers for you. Just speak to Joyce Carlisle and she will make the necessary arrangements.
BANSTEAD HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY invite you to join them for a Coffee morning on Wednesday 19th February between 10 and 12 noon in the Spencer and Fellowship Halls. Everyone is welcome!
DO YOU ENJOY BAKING? The Open Door Coffee shop is looking for a regular cake baker who could provide a home-made cake once a month on a Tuesday. Please speak to Ruth Williams if you can help. Tidings, February/March 2014, Page 7
SERENE ACCEPTANCE The Serenity Prayer by American theologian Dr Reinhold Niebuhr was composed in the middle of the twentieth century. This is one version: God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things that should be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other. The word serenity has a Latin root meaning ‘clear’. We need the clarity of vision that gives us the serenity to face and accept what we know cannot be altered in our lives. In his Sermon on the Mount, our Lord gave some guidance about what we cannot change: ‘Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?’ (Mt 6:27) The Serenity Prayer is really asking for the power to accept God’s will in our lives. In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus demonstrated his serene acceptance of his Father’s will: ‘...not my will, but yours be done.’ (Lk 22:42) Jesus gave his disciples his model prayer – The Lord’s Prayer – and within it are words that emphasize the importance he placed on carrying out his Father’s will: ‘Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven’ (Mt 6:10) I have always been struck by these words; it occurs to me that, when we say them, in our hearts we often really mean ‘My will be done on earth...’ We find it difficult truly to accept our Father’s will in our lives. Yet this serene acceptance could help so many Christians grow stronger in their faith. It isn’t a matter of paying lip-service: ‘Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.’ (Mt 7:21) Nor does it mean that we become fatalistic, letting life take us where it will. Rather, we should cooperate with our Heavenly Father, so that his will is done on earth through us, as it is in heaven. When Our Lord had been teaching a large crowd and it was getting late and the place was remote, his disciples came to him and suggested that the people be sent to the nearest villages to buy food. Jesus gave an extraordinary response: ‘They do not need to Page 8 , Tidings, February/March 2014
go away. You give them something to eat.’ (Mt 14:16) Our Lord expected his disciples to do something for the crowd of hungry people, not just to send them away. Similarly, he expects us to carry out his Father’s will, without an excuse like that of his disciples: ‘We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish.’ On that famous occasion, Jesus took control of the situation, and there followed the feeding of the five thousand. But usually, we find that God leaves us to carry out his will with as much courage as we can muster. But how can we gain the courage we need? After his transfiguration, Jesus returned with Peter, James and John to the other nine disciples, and found them vainly trying to drive a demon out of a boy, in front of a crowd of onlookers. Jesus took over and immediately healed the child. The disciples waited until they could ask Jesus privately, ‘Why couldn’t we drive it out?’ (Mt 17:19) Our Lord’s reply is given in Matthew’s gospel as: ‘Because you have so little faith’ (17:20), and in Mark’s gospel as: ‘This kind can come out only by prayer.’ (9:29) Jesus probably said both things, and so we need to pray with faith for the wisdom to discern God’s will for our lives, and then the courage to put it into practice. My mother tells me that she was present when Mother Teresa visited Banstead URC. This famous nun exemplified that serene acceptance of God’s will and also the courage to change things, to which we should all aspire. She was once asked how she would be able to help all the sick and hungry people of Calcutta. ‘One person at a time’ was her simple, yet profound, reply. Tony Smith
FAIRTRADE FORTNIGHT 24TH FEBRUARY - 9TH MARCH This year marks the launch of a unique campaign that aims to transform the banana industry to ensure those at the sharp end of the supply chain, the millions of struggling banana farmers and workers, get a fair deal. Go to http://foncho.fairtrade.org.uk to find out more. Together we can make bananas fair. Tidings, February/March 2014, Page 9
ON THE SPOT … GEORGINA CATT I am looking forward to … dancing in the Banstead Five Churches Pantomime, Sinbad. Something which scares/worries me is … spiders and I really don’t like hail - last week we got caught in a storm and we got drenched. Something which surprises me is ... I have started to like broccoli (not a lot, just a little bit!) The last book I read was … Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Something which annoys me is ... when people drop litter on the ground, especially outside our house. A place I would like to visit is ... Paris, I would like to see the Eiffel Tower. My favourite animal would be a cat because we have an adorable one called Doris and she is very fluffy. If I could be any character in any film I would be … Jane Banks from Mary Poppins because I like her personality and her dresses. I wish I were better at ….football so that I could beat all the boys, including my brother.
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Something not many people know about me is … I don’t like strawberry ice cream. My favourite hymn is … Make me a channel of your peace because it is very peaceful. The best thing which happened to me recently was … seeing Verity again when she came down from Suffolk.
THE BANSTEAD FIVE CHURCHES OPEN DOOR COFFEE SHOP The Open Door Coffee Shop in the Orchard, Banstead High Street is open Monday to Saturday 10am to 2pm. Drop in for a freshly made filter coffee (only 70p) and homemade cakes (60p). Light meals also served.
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LENT HOUSE GROUPS This year Ash Wednesday falls on 5th March, marking the start of Lent. As usual the Banstead Five Churches are organising Lent House Groups weekly for five weeks from 10th March - these are a friendly, unpressured way to explore our faith together, to meet new friends and share questions and insights (or just listen, if you prefer). We’ll be following a course called ‘Build on the Rock’, provided by York Courses. It looks at faith and doubt, reflecting on the evidence for a loving God and on the ‘strange and beautiful story’ of Jesus. On the accompanying CD you’ll hear the voices of Bishop Richard Chartres, Dr Paula Gooder and Revd Joel Edwards. Each session closes with a reflection by Revd David Gamble. Lists to sign if you would be interested in joining a group will be in each of the Five Churches from the beginning of January everyone is very welcome (names needed by 10th February). Please see the March Diary Sheet or website for details of the Lent Services which will be held in each church on Wednesday evenings during Lent.
CAR PARKING ON A SUNDAY MORNING Please remember that we have the use of the rear section of the Community Centre car park in Park Road on a Sunday morning. If you are fit and able please make use of this facility so that we can leave the spaces in our car park for the less mobile and do not cause a nuisance to our neighbours in Fiddicroft Avenue and Woodmansterne Lane. Thank you.
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EVENTS AT ST ANDREW’S, CHEAM One of the advantages of being in vacancy is that we are forging closer links with our neighbouring URC in Cheam. Revd Philip Gray, our interim moderator and the minister there, has invited us to attend a variety of events over the next few months.
Preparing worship Revd Richard Goldring, the Southern Synod Development Officer for Education and Learning will be running a day course on ‘Preparing Worship’ on Saturday March 15th. This will be a particularly useful day for Elders and all those who are interested in preparing and leading worship. The day will start with coffee at 9.30am. Please speak to Philip for more information and let him know if you would like to attend.
Second Half Living Martin Cooper will be running a short course on ‘Evangelism training for the over 50s’. This will begin with a taster session on Tuesday 18th March at 7.30 pm, followed by two Saturday morning sessions from 9:30am to 1:30pm on March 29th and April 12th.
Christianity in the Middle East On April 2nd Bishop Angealos of the Egyptian Coptic Church in Britain will talk about the state of Christianity in the Middle East 7pm. Everyone is welcome to attend.
Film Nights Every second Tuesday of the month film night at 8pm. A full length feature film with a coffee break intermission, FREE.
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CONSIDER THE WORDS YOU PRAY We should not pray "our” if our faith has no room for others and their need. We should not pray "Father” if we do not demonstrate this relationship to God in our daily living. We should not pray "who art in Heaven” if all of our interests and pursuits are in earthly things. We should not pray "hallowed be thy name” if we are not striving for God's help to be holy. We should not pray "Thy kingdom come” if we are not willing to accept God's rule in our life. We should not pray "Thy will be done” if we are not willing or resentful of having it in our life. We should not pray "on earth as it is in Heaven” unless we are truly ready to give ourselves to God's service here and now. We should not pray "give us this day our daily bread” without expending honest effort for it or if we withhold from our neighbour the bread we receive. We should not pray "forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us” if we continue to harbour a grudge against anyone. We should not pray "lead us not into temptation” if we deliberately choose to remain in a situation where we are likely to be tempted. We should not pray "deliver us from evil” if we are not prepared to fight with our life and our prayer. We should not pray "Thine is the kingdom” if we are not willing to obey the 'King'. We should not pray "Thine is the power and the glory” if we are seeking power for ourselves and our own glory first. We should not pray "forever and ever” if we are too anxious about each day's affairs. We should not pray "Amen” unless we can honestly say "Not our will, but your will be done” so let it be. Author unknown Tidings, February/March 2014, Page 15
Church Secretary: Kevin Dinnage 01737 356380
firstname.lastname@example.org Copy for the next edition should be with the editor by Sunday 22nd September Email: email@example.com
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The magazine of Banstead United Reformed Church