Bishop Libby and Archdeacon Ian are in the process of visiting all the Deaneries in their care as part of “Thy Kingdom Come”. On Wednesday 9 May they led a Prayer Walk through Macclesfield Deanery. They started at Rainow Church and ended at the Hope Centre café at Park Green, Macclesfield. The route was organised by Taffy Davies.
Forgiveness: Becoming a Community of Forgiveness
led by Revd Wes Sutton Thursday 3rd May 2018.
This day examines how the church can become a community of forgiveness and what that looks like in real life. It looks at the theological and ethical issues surrounding forgiveness and how Jesus’ teaching ran contrary to the norms of his day – as it does ours. We will also consider what the impact of forgiveness is on us and others and how the church can model the forgiving heart of God to the world.
These are stand-alone days held in partnership with Acorn – all are welcome to attend. Each day begins with tea and coffee at 9.30am and finishes at 4pm. Booking forms are available from firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 01928 733777
£27.50pp – Includes lunch and refreshments
Ascension Quiet Day with Trevor Dennis 10th May 2018
9.30am – 4pm
Let’s celebrate God to the skies this Ascension Day… But what kind of God will we celebrate?
So much of the language we use of God is drawn from the world of men of power – but after Jesus of Nazareth, how appropriate is it?
The Bible has some surprises up its sleeve, and has other ways of talking to suggest, other ways of experiencing and praying. link to website
£27.50pp inc. lunch and refreshments.
Thy Kingdom Come – Bringing out the God colours in the world!
with Revd Lynn Weston 14th May 2018
We shall use prayer and reflection to seek God’s discernment as we pray ‘Thy Kingdom Come’. How might God be asking us to bring his colours into the world? What might God be asking of us individually and corporately as we play our part in making change in the world? How can we reach those who don’t yet know Christ, considering that we just might be the answer to our prayers?
These mini retreats are a chance to step back from your busyness, and listen to what God is saying to you.
Each day starts with coffee at 9.30am and ends with tea at 3.30pm. Booking forms available from: Foxhill@chester.anglican.org or call 01928 733777
£22 including refreshments and a light lunch
Celtic Treasures – Light from the past to inspire and illumine our lives today led by Revd Roy Searle – A leader of the Northumbria Community
21st – 23rd September
Celtic Christian spirituality was forged on the anvil of a changing world. Roy will explore treasures from the stories and traditions of the past that can bring hope, inspiration and light to our life and faith journeys in our changing contemporary church and world. link to event calendar
£165pp incl. en-suite accommodation, meals and refreshments.
Foxhill House and Woodlands is set within 70 acres of beautiful Cheshire countryside. We can accommodate up to 28 guests overnight, and cater for up to 80 people. We have rooms suitable for meetings of between 2 and 80 people. Our life is centred around our chapel, where we pray daily and offer a regular pattern of worship. The chapel may also be available for groups to use as part of their visit. Telephone: 01928 733 777 Email: email@example.com
Foxhill House and Woodlands
… written by a young member of our congregation
I love the nature as much as you do, God. The river flows as Jesus goes. God, please protect nature. All the poor and all the endangered animals, protect them. God, I wish that one day I will see you. I wish that all the bad people become good and all the litter is cleared one day. Dear God, all the poor – give them more – as you can.
Tyler (a Year One pupil at St John’s School)
Third Friday of the month – 2.30-3.30pm
At our last GAP meeting it was decided to start an informal monthly prayer meeting. Its purpose will be to pray for the needs of the parish. Meetings will be held in someone’s house as arranged each time.
If you would like to come along, or if you have anything that you would like to pray for specifically, please contact Maggie O’Donnell 01625 572711 or Anne Coombes 01625 571144.
The first meeting is on Friday 16 February.
A letter for June 2016 from our Curate Michael Fox
In early May the Christian church celebrates two festivals which never quite hold the limelight in the manner of Christmas or Easter or even Harvest. The first, Ascension, marks the endpoint of Christ’s bodily presence on earth. The second, Pentecost, celebrates the coming of the Holy Spirit – the outpouring of the Spirit’s blessing upon those few early believers assembled in Jerusalem.
Ascension and Pentecost are best experienced in relation to one another. Ascension asks us to think about the first disciples as they undergo yet another parting from Jesus. “Are you finally going to restore the Kingdom of Israel to its rightful place?” they ask Jesus on the way up Mount Olivet. “No,” says Jesus, “it’s down to you to build the Kingdom of my Father. But you will not be alone. Didn’t I promise that the Holy Spirit would come to you and be with you, giving you guidance and authority? Go back to Jerusalem to wait and to pray.”
At Pentecost a few days later the Holy Spirit was indeed poured out upon the believers gathered in a house in Jerusalem, and so the church was born, ‘baptised with the Holy Spirit and fire,’ as John the Baptist had foretold.
This year the Archbishops of Canterbury and York issued an invitation to all Christians across the UK to take part in a ‘wave of prayer’ during the period between Ascension and Pentecost. The Archbishops invited us all to spend a week in prayer for a renewed confidence in sharing the Gospel. Since our Patron Saint, Oswald, was much concerned with confidence and courage, it seemed like a good invitation to accept. Twenty members of the church signed up to pray the Lord’s Prayer each day and for five friends or family members to know Jesus more deeply. Some members signed up to help create prayer stations in church based on the Lord’s Prayer. Some brave souls also signed up for a prayer walk around part of Bollington.
The prayer stations were created all around the church and were woven into the fabric of the Thursday morning Eucharist and the Family Communion on the Sunday of Pentecost itself. Each station took a line or couplet of the Lord’s Prayer and created an immersive environment in which to sit and allow God to speak ‘between the lines’. The stations ranged in concept from a table set for a meal, with representations of our basic daily needs, to a tent with a ‘heavenly ceiling’ and a rug to lie on. There was an opportunity to ‘wipe the slate clean’ at the Forgiveness table and an opportunity to think about how Thy will’ is done throughout the cycle of life. A pillar became a tree dressed with tempting apples while in the chancel there was a declaration of ‘Holy ground’ and the opportunity to kneel in response to the holiness of God’s name.
Part of the intention was to investigate different ways of praying, involving the whole of one’s body, mind and spirit, and to explore the heights, depths and breadths of the prayer we often pray without pausing to let its wisdom shape us and enfold us.
Of course the intention of the Wave of Prayer is to equip us for mission, to give us the confidence that the Holy Spirit brings. This mission started during the week with visits from 3 different classes from Bollington Cross School, continued with prayer stations set up by invitation at St. John’s and Dean Valley schools (during the stressful period of the SATS tests) and developed as we took our first faltering steps in the art of prayer-walking around the streets of Bollington. This is a simple way of blessing the community we live in, walking and pausing to pray for residents, businesses, shoppers, walkers as well as all those who help to make Bollington a safe and secure community in which all can thrive.
I hope and pray that some of these new ways of praying and blessing will stay with us as we venture on into summer. If you are out for a walk in the town, why not stop and say a prayer for someone nearby? And don’t forget to (prayer) wave as you pass by St Oswald’s!