This is another packed edition – so much so that we didn’t have room to print the Parish Christmas Card form again, but please read the reminder note at the bottom of page 6 as time is running out!
Keep your diary to hand to note dates as you read the Magazine – there’s a lot going on in November and many December dates to note too – and they aren’t all in the Church Notices overleaf, the Events on pages 4, 5 and 6, or the Church Diary on pages 30 and 31.
If you, or someone you know, is likely to be eating their Christmas Lunch alone on Christmas Day (and would rather be with other people) then please read the advertisement on page 31 for the CTiA lunch.
In Parish Pantry (on page 10 this month) we have broken our usual pattern of alternating sweet and savoury recipes, but the sweet recipe was originally made with meat and is very traditional for this time of year!
You might be surprised to see an article on Boomtown on page 27 as that is an August inconvenience, but we thought it would interest people in our parish to find out how much local charities benefit from the event.
This edition sees some experimentation with a different typeface – one used in other parish magazines. We would welcome feedback, particularly if you find any of the articles more difficult to read than usual.
As always you can see the photographs we have published in colour in the Magazine section of our website: www.stjohnsalresford.org.uk. Judy
Leading article from November Edition
Coffee, Cake & Chat…… & Crosses.
Last Tuesday I had the privilege of going to the Coffee Cake and Chat group ( you should try it on the second Tues of the month from 10.00am!) and, as Angela was away, I was to do the five minute talk slot. I took a few different types of crosses that meant something to me and this is what I said…
1- Gold cross necklace for my baptism.
This cross reminds me of the new life I have in Christ, being given a new, clean, fresh start. I came to faith in my second year of university and thus far my life had been pretty messy. This was when I first grasped that Jesus was not just another bloke,(I’d had enough of them!), but was God in human form. I was also overwhelmed as I learned about God’s unconditional love for each one of us just as we are, not waiting for us to be perfect.
2- This cross has a stone tied to it.
It reminds me of all the healing I have received through Christ and His death on the cross- much hurt, trauma and anger that was dealt with through prayer and helped me to feel whole again. Psalm 51 Vs 10 says ’Create in me a pure heart O God, and renew a right spirit within me’.
3- This stunning enamelled copper cross was made by a friend and given on my ordination to priesthood.
This reminds me of God’s gifts within each of us; my friend’s creativity and the way God calls us to use those gifts in His service. I challenged the listeners to explore what feeds their soul .. and do it!
4-The prettiness of this pink flowery cross makes me go “Yeuk!”.
The cross of Christ was not pretty but horrendous. He was held there not by the nails but by love. Jesus said “ Greater love has no one but this; to lay down his life for his friends”. On Nov 12th we shall be honouring the many who did just that.
5- This palm cross
reminds me of the crowds who cheered ‘Hosanna’ as Jesus rode into Jerusalem…& how quickly the cries turned to ‘Crucify Him’. Each year this cross gives out the challenge- ‘What will you say to Christ?’.
6- Finally this wooden holding cross that lives under my pillow.
Sometimes prayer is easy, often it is hard. Often words are inadequate and I am too tired. I hold this cross and am reminded that God knows my heart and mind before I speak.
All these are crosses are symbols of a religion, but what I emphasised at the end, is that being a Christian is not actually about being religious, but is about having a relationship with Jesus Christ. I am sure you know about who Christ was, but how well do you know Him?