11th April 2021
In light of the latest restrictions and our second lockdown we are unable to worship in church for the time being. However, we can still access the on-line circuit services each Sunday at 10.30am and other opportunities for worship through the week.
For On-line Services and other opportunities for worship - see Services page
If you go into the church premises (other than for the service), please remember the requirement to sign in and out by completing the form pinned up on the noticeboard in the corridor between the hall and the church. (You will need to bring your own pen to do this).
Dates for your Diary
Save the date in your diary there will be a Quiz evening on ZOOM organised by our church for Christian Aid on Saturday 15th May at 7.30. Poster to follow next week.
The General Church Meeting will be held on Sunday 13th June, either by Zoom or in person, start time to be advised in due course.
Thank you to all those who have responded to the electronic consent form which I emailed. Here’s a reminder of the link if you haven’t yet given your consent: https://forms.gle/oAzjstCBi9h4vxuc6
If you would prefer to complete a hard copy of the consent form, there is one available. Please contact myself email@example.com or Wendy: firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get a consent form to you. In line with the 2018 Data Protection Act, it is necessary that we have your consent to hold your details on record.
Expressions on Zoom
Sylvia has been leading a Dance Zoom every Monday afternoon since December. It is a good way to get together and worship God. Sylvia would like to invite anyone, who is feeling isolated on a Monday afternoon but can use Zoom, to contact her and join in – to participate in whatever way suits them – the only requirement is a worshipful heart. (see Activities>Expressions page for latest, full details).
Online Bible study meeting - Every Tuesday between 8.30pm - 10.00pm
If you have been missing out on Bible study during lockdown, you are most welcome to join our small group as we read and discuss chapter 4 of Proverbs.
Join Zoom meeting:
Meeting ID: 863 9304 1488
(no Passcode required)
Reflection on prayer for healing (2)
“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it." John 14 verses 12-14
You may remember last December I gave a reflection on healing prayer, both at a Thursday evening Crossover service, and then in writing for our church notices.
At those times I shared how I went from wanting a spiritual gift, to receiving it, as well as sharing many of my doubts I had at that time.
Moving on four months and with so many church activities now taking place in front of a computer, I have been fortunate to meet a group of men and women of faith at a charity called “Make a Difference, Maidstone, (MADM), most of whom have a story of divine intervention in their own lives, and who are supportive in my quest to explore the gift I have been given.
I have prayed for healing over several people, both at MADM and elsewhere. I know of at least one partial and one immediate healing in the last month. There are others I have prayed for over a longer period where I don’t know if healing has happened or not.
What has changed since December?
I had a time of discussion and prayer, with a brother at MADM. During that prayer I asked God to show me how everything is about him, and where I fit into his plans.
..... and from that has come....
I no longer worry about how my prayer sounds to others, thinking it might not be good enough. Some prayers, I considered the worst said prayers, have been the most successful in seeing healing. I now know the only activities required of me are to speak out both in prayer and faith. Nothing less, nothing more.
I know where I stand in my relationship with God. Ephesians 1 verses 1 – 14 explains where hopefully we all are in Christ. If you decide to read through these verses, notice how all that is mentioned has already been given to us as believers in Christ, through love and grace. We don’t have to do anything to receive what is mentioned.
Praying is now an exciting opportunity to see what God might do, not only through healing, but also by revealing himself to them.
Family and Pastoral News
We ask God’s blessing, love, comfort and reassurance on:
Revd. Naomi, Luke and baby Rachel Oates
Revd. Dr. Bonni-Belle Pickard, our Minister, whilst Naomi is on maternity leave
Revd. Tony Graff, who will be leading the on-line circuit service on Sunday
The family of Bert Cialis who sadly passed away just before Easter. May they find comfort in the knowledge that Bert is now with Jean
Peggy for courage and strength as she continues to cope with her illness and that she will be strong enough to travel back to Texas with her daughter on 13th April
All those in our congregation and members of their family who have been unwell, in pain, or admitted to hospital. Any who are lonely or isolated, awaiting hospital appointments and anxious about their health, worried or affected by Covid-19. House bound folk and we think especially of Delphine at this time
The doctors, nurses, and all those working for the NHS, carers in homes and those who visit patients at home
Folk living in: Merlin Avenue, Middle Mill Road, Mill Street, Morris Close, New Hythe Lane and New Road
Our church for growth, in faith and numbers and we also ask God’s blessing on each and everyone of us, that we might fulfil our calling to be the people of God working for Him in this place.
We give thanks:
Lord, the disciples hid behind locked doors because they were afraid. They had seen you die and couldn’t believe that you are alive. They had heard the story of the empty tomb but they hadn’t experienced its life-changing power. So come to us with our doubts and fears, and set us free, give us new life, as we experience your living presence in our midst. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Valerie will be preparing the on-line prayers next week. If you have a request for prayer or thank you, her email address is: ValerieT_17@hotmail.com
Some of you have asked how to donate to the foodbank at Maidstone Homeless Care's day centre, which is seeing unprecedented demand in these times when so many people's income has been affected by the virus. Naomi is currently visiting the day centre once or twice a week, so if you have food you'd like to donate, you can drop it off at the manse (45 Garner Drive) on your 'daily exercise,' or let her know if you'd like it collected from your doorstep, or contact Zofia (the day centre manager) to arrange a time when you can drop it off yourself at the centre in Knightrider Street. email@example.com
Archbishop of Canterbury free dial-in worship phone line during coronavirus lockdown
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has launched a free national phone line as a simple new way to bring worship and prayer into people’s homes while church buildings are closed because of the coronavirus.
Daily Hope, which is available from today, offers music, prayers and reflections as well as full worship services from the Church of England at the end of a telephone line.
The line – which is available 24 hours a day on 0800 804 8044 – has been set up particularly with those unable to join online church services during the period of restrictions in mind.
Callers will hear a special greeting from the Archbishop before being able to choose from a range of options, including hymns, prayers, reflections and advice on COVID-19.
Helping Vulnerable People
Gill Fox at Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council has set up a Community Hub to provide assistance to the most vulnerable local people (some of whom may not be on the lists being provided by GP’s). She would really appreciate any assistance in identifying these vulnerable people, as well as trying to find healthy volunteers who can assist in reaching them at this time (especially volunteers who are already DBS checked). You can contact Gill on firstname.lastname@example.org
Oasis UK (founded by Rev. Steve Chalke) have set up a Friendship Line. If you are feeling isolated, worried, or simply could use a chat call them on 020 7921 4272. Calls are charged at the standard rate but are completely free over the internet!
Singing the Faith
website includes service sheets for worshipping at home and links to church services that can be live-streamed: see www.methodist.org.uk/our-faith/worship/singing-the-faith-plus/seasons-and-themes/worship-during-the-coronavirus-pandemic/
The Methodist website includes a daily Bible study: www.methodist.org.uk/our-faith/the-bible/a-word-in-time/
“Out of all the relationships and friendships we have on this earth. There is one that trumps them all and that’s our friendship with God.”
“Never forget that God is your friend. And like all friends He longs to hear what’s been happening in your life...”
“If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it. If He had a wallet, your photo would be in it. He sends you flowers every spring and a sunrise every morning. Face it, friend, He is crazy about you!”
“All shall be well, all shall be well, and All Manner of Things Shall be Well.”
Mother Julian of Norwich