Welcome to Wokingham Methodist Church
Sunday 5 December - Advent 2
10.30am Holy Communion - Revd Catherine Bowstead
Weekly Pastoral Letter - 26 November 2021
From Chris Rooke-Matthews, Church Steward
I’ve gradually become used to dark mornings and early evening sunsets over the last month, now the temperatures are falling. I’m more aware of the cold, and have started to anticipate the months of winter ahead of us. The extra blankets and layers of warm clothing are starting to be searched for. The heating is needed more, and I don’t venture out without wrapping up warmly, with hat and gloves a must now.
I always try to plant bulbs in the Autumn. Many bulbs and corms look plain and unpromising, with no sign of life, and I wonder if they will ever grow into the beautiful flowering plants pictured on the packaging. Nevertheless, I plant them, and eagerly look for signs that my faith, and experience of previous years, will be justified. Already I’m beginning to see green shoots from some of the bulbs, and the least promising, shrivelled up irregular specimens are already showing leaves. In the same way, it is in the darkest part of the year that we look forward, not just to Christmas, but to the time of Jesus’ coming again.
The past months have sometimes caused us doubt, and we may have begun to wonder if life will ever return to ‘normal’, but through it all we have been able to see God’s hand in the kindness and generosity of others. As a Foodbank volunteer, I am regularly able to see both the generosity of strangers, and the way their kindness brings hope to those in need of our support. At this time of year we can feel inundated by requests for donations from charities, both local and national. On Sunday we will once again be showing our support for The Cowshed through their Christmas Appeal. The Cowshed is a local Berkshire charity, supporting vulnerable families and individuals. You can see more about this in the notices below.
Catherine will be leading our service this Sunday, with the theme ‘Signs of Hope’, and we will be celebrating the first Sunday in Advent. You may find it helpful to look at the readings, which are from Jeremiah 33: v14 – 16, and Luke 21: v25 – 36.
As we light our Advent candle, we are reminded that Jesus is the light of the world, and he is with us on every step of our journey.
Weekly Pastoral Letter - 19 November 2021
From Claire Knight Church & Community Outreach Team Leader
Last Saturday at ‘A Fresh Start’ we welcomed members of our church family from different generations and as a special treat, not only did we enjoy our muffin of the month but we also had bacon rolls! Aside from our amazing feast, we focused and reflected on the story of Noah and God’s promise to us.
Noah faithfully followed God’s instruction – a huge undertaking, with a faithful and willing heart but I can only imagine how he must have been feeling when God spoke to him.
I have said before in this letter how even when we feel overwhelmed with what we are called to do, God guides and supports us to cope and gives us just enough. Sometimes it is easy to feel as though we are being put on and unable to manage. This can cloud how we feel about tasks, and effect how we approach them and often how we make others feel.
I am the worst at this but have noticed that if I approach things with an open, willing and faithful heart like Noah, I feel more positive and better equipped and so do others around me.
Since last year, we have seen our volunteers step up and support our reopening of the café, Alzheimer’s groups and other outreach activities with a willing and faithful heart and I am grateful for this.
I wonder how Noah would have reacted to some of the things we are called to do today?
A ‘Fresh Start’ meets every second Saturday from 9am – 10.30am in the Café. There is something for everyone! Do join us and bring some friends!