Dear Church Friends,
Hello everyone. I am sorry to have to begin these notices with some very sad news. Our former Minister, David Phillips has asked me to share the following with you.
Dear Friends at Fairhaven,
During my years at the White Church I often had cause to be thankful for your prayers and support. Those prayers helped to carry me through some testing times. I would ask that you hold our family in your prayers at this time.
On Wednesday 29th December my beloved son Sam passed away at his flat in Birmingham. He died alone and was found my son-in-law on Friday (New Years Eve). Sam was only 41 and although he had struggled with alcohol dependency for some years he was working very hard to overcome and to rebuild his life. This is a harrowing experience for all of us. Please remember us.
Please remember David and his family in your prayers at this difficult and distressing time.
The first week of the New Year has not been as one would have hoped. The weather has been very wet and wintry in our area and there has been a rapid increase in the number of cases of Covid in the North West. Please don’t attend worship if you have any symptoms; keep your distance when in the church buildings and wear a face covering at all times except when eating or drinking. Please do everything possible to minimise risks to yourselves and to others. Thank you.
The good news is that it is getting lighter in the evening and the birds are beginning to sing in the late afternoon – our resident robin has been trilling away in between myriad visits to the new bird feeder. I was fed-up with the squirrels eating all the sunflower seeds, so I bought a Squirrel Buster feeder from the RSPB shop. I was sceptical whether it would work as we have very determined squirrels! I was assured that if it wasn’t effective, I could return the feeder and get my money back. So far it has worked. The squirrels are very, very puzzled and keep trying to get the seeds, but the feeder shuts when their weight is on it and the pole at the top is designed so that they have difficulty in getting a grip. Smaller birds can use it but not the heavier ones. I still use the old feeder for mixed seeds and the squirrels will eat these, but not as speedily.
Our Worship on Sunday 9th January at 10.45am will be led by Val Atkinson
Bible Readings: Psalm 29 and Luke 3: 15 – 17, 21 – 22
Our Worship on Sunday 16th January at 10.45am will be led by Stuart Gay
Our Worship on Sunday 23rd January at 10.45am will be led by Andrew Barratt
The Elders will be meeting on 11th January
Church Meeting on Sunday 30th Jan. This will take place following worship.
Although there was a Church AGM at the end of November, there hasn’t been a quarterly Church Meeting since the beginning of the pandemic, so I am giving notice that there will be a Church Meeting after worship on Sunday 30th January. The Agenda will be issued next week.
I have read of a story about John Wesley. It seems that he was walking along a country lane with a friend who had many problems. The man said he couldn’t see the way ahead, or even think which way to turn. Wesley paused and drew his friend’s attention to the thick hedge beside them. It was impossible to see through it and yet they were able to look over it. This was the only solution in a difficult situation, he explained. If we can see a distant horizon or a glimpse of blue sky, it’s easier to deal with our troubles. When you can’t see through the hedge surrounding it, look over it.
A poem of hope from Marion Cleworth
When your days are filled with problems and you don’t know what to do,
Life turns up surprises when you least expect it to.
A chance word from a stranger, a letter from a friend
A glowing sky at sunset – God’s blessings never end.
Then to your weary heart there comes a tiny little spark
Of hope, to bring you shining through and lift you from the dark.
World Day of Prayer 2022
Are you able to help?
For many years Ann Bucklow has represented our church at the World Day of Prayer Service which is usually held on the first Friday in March. Ann recently received a phone call from Eileen Beadle from The Drive Methodist Church. They are doing next year’s World Day of Prayer and there is a meeting about this on January 20th at 2pm at the Drive. Ann would like to retire from this role, so if you feel you could take it on, please contact either Ann or me.
Let us pray
We pray for those who are grieving this week. Be with them in their sorrow and give them hope, strength and comfort. We pray for our church and congregation and ask for your leadership during any challenges we may face this year. Make our church a beacon of light during gloomy days and renew us with Your spirit and everlasting love. For Jesus’ sake. Amen.
Please join me in saying the Grace together.
May the Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Love of God and the Fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all, now and evermore. Amen
God Bless you all