Recycle your Christmas Tree in January 2019!

Richard Raymond writes…

A Million Pound Milestone

On 13 January 2001 a van swung out of the drive of the old vicarage in Prestbury and went to make a collection of a Christmas tree. Tied onto the tree was an envelope containing a few pound coins. Building on a fundraising initiative based on the Parable of the Talents proposed by Men’s Choir member Mike Thompson and his wife Lis when the church required a new organ, those coins were the first donation to the East Cheshire Hospice Christmas Tree Collection.

Some 19 years later (to the day!) on 13 January 2019 over 40 vans all manned by volunteers of the same Christmas Tree Collection will be out hoping that they will pick up the one tree whose donation will raise the cumulative net amount of monies raised for the hospice to over one million pounds.

Since 2001 over 70,000 trees have been collected. Countless volunteers have helped over the last 19 years; many meals have been served to keep the van crews going; endless roads have been visited; bundle-loads of leaflets have been delivered; and a whole community has helped in so many ways to do this. We could reflect on our award-winning status or that we are the largest volunteer-led Christmas tree collection in the country, or that another 50 hospices have followed our lead to run such a fundraising initiative.

But now is not the time for all of this! We have a six-figure target to smash! And to do so we shall mobilize our teams of volunteers who will have to collect another 75 tonnes of trees. Once again we will organize an enormous industrial operation to turn these into recycled mulch.

However all of this will not achieve our target. It is the generous support of all our customers which will push this year’s total to over £120,000, and that will see us through £1million! Please help us!

By doing so we can all support our local hospice and help them to provide care for those with life-limiting conditions, and their families and friends, through the in-patient unit, the daycare centre and the Hospice at Home service.

Please go to www.echtrees.org.uk. Here you will find how to book your tree in and how to make a donation.

The Collection will be on 12/13 January 2019.

Poppy Appeal Launch 2018

Lyric by Joe Riley:

We all know about the traumas of the war,
But do we know about the things that happened after or before;
The people who’d seen horror,
Lived hell upon the earth;
But I can see in you and me that the aftermath was not to be heard;

Poor James, Poor John,
Can you show a bit more sympathy for the people who’d be rather dead than living;
I’m shocked, appalled,
At them all for sending home,
Broken lives and empty minds;
How did their families survive;

Who knew that time,
Would pass you by so quickly;
Think we’ve seen bad things,
But have we, have we really?
That’s why we’re here,
To think of all those people,
How did they carry on, how did they carry on?

Some say that it was such a horrid time,
But we know, that they’re wrong ‘cause there are simply no words left to describe;
The kind of pain and fear that they saw,
Would scar them ‘til the day that they would lie inside their morgue, oh

Poor James, Poor John,
Can you show a bit more sympathy for the people who’d be rather dead than living;
I’m shocked, appalled,
At them all for sending home,
Broken lives and empty minds;
How did their families survive;

Who knew that time,
Would pass you by so quickly;
Think we’ve seen bad things,
But have we, have we really?
That’s why we’re here,
To think of all those people,
How did they carry on, how did they carry on?

How did they carry on?

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
Oh, oh, oh

How did they carry on?

Poppy Appeal 2018 – Launch in Bollington

This year, the annual Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal  has a particular resonance as we reach the Centenary of the Armistice to end WW1.

The Poppy Appeal in Bollington and district will be officially launched in Bollington at 10.30am on Saturday 27 November at St Oswald’s Church at Bollington Cross.

After a brief introduction by the Poppy Appeal Organiser Debra Nixon, Canon Veronica Hydon will offer a prayer and read some verses of WW1 poetry. There will be a song by Joe Riley, followed by a short period of silence for reflection. A prayer will be said by Veronica commissioning the Poppy Collection volunteers and blessing them in their task. We will then all sing a new hymn which has been specially composed for this Armistice Day.

Tea and coffee will be available after this brief ceremony.

Please come and attend this Launch to support and encourage the volunteers, but also to remind ourselves of the value of the Peace that most of those of us in this country are able to enjoy.

You can read about the men from Bollington who served in WW1 here.

 

 

India Direct – a charity based nearby

On Thursday 16 June we were visited by Jenny (from Rainow) and Pastor Martin (founder of Bethel Children’s Home in Chennai, South East India) who gave us a brief presentation during the sermon slot at our 9.30 Communion service. We learnt a little more over coffee after the service.

India Direct is a charity based in the Macclesfield area, supporting work with children in Chennai (formerly known as Madras). It has a connection with Poynton School.

Pastor Martin now runs two children’s homes for orphans and the children of widows. Following the Tsunami on Boxing Day 2004, a second home, named Joy by local families, was built to house survivors of the disaster. With his wife Annie, and with the assistance of other staff members, Martin provides accommodation, food and the money for education in local schools for some of the poorest children in India. They also provide shelter and work for widows, as such people are shunned by their society as bringers of bad luck. The children of Bethel and Joy grow up to lead flourishing lives, capable of providing for themselves and their families.
india direct

The annual cost of running these two homes is £60,000. A donation to India Direct, the British-based charity supporting the work of Pastor Martin, helps to ensure that some of the most destitute children on earth can grow up with a future full of hope.

If you would like to learn more about the charity, visit their website. To download a monthly donation form click IndiaDirectmonthlydonation.

Lent Lunches 2016

COME IN OUT OF THE COLD…

We will be asking for volunteers again this year please to sign up to provide a simple Lent Lunch in St Oswald’s on Thursdays between 12.30pm and 1.30pm. It is hoped to raise money for the Refugees Project we supported last autumn with our clothing collection. Refugees Aid in the North West of England is still sending out container loads of equipment, clothing and provisions to needy refugees, and the cost of transporting these goods needs to be covered too. There will be a list to sign up as a “customer” for these Lunches, as well as a request for volunteer cooks/providers! The Lunches will happen on 11/18/25 February and then on 10/17 March (i.e. not on 3 March). Please support this very worthy cause and also come along and enjoy good simple food and excellent company! Thank you.

Veronica

Thank You… for supporting Hampers of Hope

A message from Cristel Berridge, Founder and CEO of Hampers of Hope…

Thank you for your support!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone at St Oswald’s for all the support we have received, throughout 2015. With your help we were able to deliver 350 Christmas hampers to those who find this time of year a particular struggle.

In the last year we have made a huge impact in our communities.

We have now fed over 5000 people, helped +25 people back into work, reduced social isolation, opened two more Hope Centres, reduced crime, helped people keep their homes and families together, kept people warm; healthy and alive.

I have enclosed a Certificate for you to display in church as a token of our appreciation to everyone at St Oswald’s.

Every blessing.

Refugee Crisis Appeal – Update

An Amazing Response to the Bollington Refugee Crisis Appeal!

Our vicar writes…
Might I add my own huge thanks to that of Nora Carlin, the organiser of the Warrington based charity Refugees-Aid from the Northwest of England, for all those in Bollington (and from all around the Macclesfield area) who responded so generously when we opened St Oswald’s Church during September and October to receive gifts of warm clothing, waterproofs, coats, hats, socks, gloves, walking shoes, blankets, sleeping bags, holdalls, toiletries and much more, for onward distribution to desperate refugees from across Europe, the Middle East and Africa! Do please visit this Warrington charity’s Facebook page for any updates and for further suggestions of ways you can continue to help many more individuals and families displaced by economic hardship and fleeing from terrible conflicts over the coming winter months.

Thanks are due here to all our Bollington church members who made this community venture possible. We are grateful to those who gave their time and energy in so many ways, such as opening and closing the church each day, meeting the costs of publicity, emptying cupboards and drawers, washing and ironing items to bring along, praying for all concerned, sorting clothes, packing and labelling bags, and transporting everything to the collection points in Stockport and Warrington. Special thanks must go to Hannah, Dave, Ken & Sue, Christine, Sue W, Joan K, Maggie, Jennifer R, Sue B, Anthea, Bev, Luise, Jenny R, Chris, Jean & Brian, Hilary, Margaret, Michael F, Ken E, Mrs Downing & Bollington Cross PTA, the young people of RiCH, Claire and other Praise & Play parents, and to everyone else in the wider congregation (you know who you are!) who contributed in whatever way to helping those in desperate need at this critical time.

I reckon the activity in Santa’s grotto even in the long run-up to Christmas was nothing compared with that to be seen in St Oswald’s Church, piled high as it was with gifts brought in from across our local community over those five busy weeks! Thank you so much to all our volunteer Bollington elves! As you have blessed the lives of so many strangers with sack-loads of much needed goods, may God likewise bless you in generous measure this Christmas and always!

Veronica

Please note that the main appeal is now closed and the church will revert to normal opening hours. Thank you for your support. If you have additional items to donate please contact the Warrington depot.

[Link to Refugees – Aid from the North West Facebook page]

Bollington Refugee Appeal

We launched our refugee appeal at the Civic Service on Sunday 20th September, 12.00 noon. We appealed for donations of waterproofs, men’s clothing, socks, hats, gloves, walking shoes, blankets and sleeping bags, folding chairs, tea, coffee, sugar and toiletries, as well as donations of cash.

The church was open 8.30 am – 5.30 pm from Monday 21st September – Friday 23rd October to receive donations. We liaised directly with agencies taking supplies to refugees in Calais, Greece and Eastern Europe.

refugeeAppeal

 

Support for the community of Bosley

The events in Bosley this July shocked everyone in the local area, and the community has rallied around to help and raise funds to help the people affected by the disaster.
If you would like to contribute to the BOSLEY DISASTER APPEAL please send donations to:
BOSLEY DISASTER APPEAL
PO Box 645
MACCLESFIELD
SK10 9LU