21st February 2021
From the pastor’s pen…
Bible Reading: Mark Ch:3v1-6
A withered hand amongst withered hearts!
Jesus never met needy people without leaving them better for the experience. His acts of mercy and love can be found all over the gospels. His visit to place a worship, recorded here in Mark, reminds us that when we welcome him into our gatherings we welcome the source of all help, hope and healing for all who will reach out to him.
Sadly some people can bring the opposite and only create an atmosphere of mistrust, anger and ill will. Blessing and blight can sometimes be found in the same place – even in a religious place if people don’t keep their hearts and spirits right before God.
It’s interesting that at the heart of this story is a needy man with a withered hand who Jesus wanted to help. Yet somehow that need was ignored, even side lined by a group of religious people who had created an agenda of mistrust and false religious traditions.
Their fault finding eyes cared nothing for the needy man in their midst. Their main focus was to dish the dirt, to look for loopholes and to try to catch Jesus out.
Their withered hearts had no place for God’s real work. Their sight had become an inverted gaze where petty point scoring and being proved right had become a complete obsession. Could such an attitude really be found in a place of worship? Sadly the answer then as now is yes and if we are not careful it can happen amongst us too.
Jesus re – centred the picture, The important person was the needy man who needed his touch. If we ever lose sight of that then we have lost sight of the gospel and exchanged it for nothing but withered hearts and a bunch of mumbles.
Your Friend & Pastor
Please note that with increasing issues with the virus we have now taken the decision to broadcast our services electronically until we can safely meet together again. We will continue to keep this under review but for the time being our Sunday Services will continue at 4pm through Facebook live stream. Let’s all continue to meet for worship and around the Word of God each week and encourage one another. During February we will be starting some new teaching on Sundays called ‘Acts of Mercy‘ as we look as some of Jesus ministry in the gospels.
Mid-week Bible Study
This has now switched to a Zoom format until further notice as we continue to meet on Tuesday’s at 10.00am. If you would like to join us please let Pastor Roy know and he will send you an access code. Send Roy an email on firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be commencing this week with a new series based on Lent. Please bring your Lent book with you.
Olive Branch Prayer Stations – Continues on Zoom
Join us on Zoom if you would like to share in fellowship and prayer. Simply email us at Zoom@A4L.uk and we will send you an access code. Conversely you can continue to use the prayers on the prayer and prayer requests section of our website if it is more convenient to pray on your own. We pray from 9am-10am each week.
Need help with food, prescription collections or transport?
Our local foodbank is still operating every Thursday and we are voucher holders if you need a food parcel. Just speak with Pastor Roy confidentially and he will issue a voucher. Equally our Volunteer Centre is assisting with other practical matters for any who may need help. Don’t struggle, let us know if you are in need. If you want to be a volunteer then please contact the Volunteer Centre directly who will advise you.
Lent Reflections 17th Feb – 3rd April
The time when we look towards Easter and the lengthening of spring days will soon be upon us. Lent gives everyone an opportunity to reflect as we make our way towards this Holy time. The churches in the village have decided to work together during this time and a special book of Lent reflections has been ordered for all who would like one, These can be worked through individually or together with some readings for every day.
Pastor Roy will send one out to those in our church so do look out for it. If the possibility arises to do something collectively we will keep everyone informed. Please note we have now managed to create a churches together Lent zoom meeting on Wednesday evenings at 7pm. If you would like join please give your details to Rev Roy or Rev Andrew who will let you have the access code.
Thank you to all who have returned their membership forms. We will look at formally bringing people in on the first communion Sunday in March. If we cannot do this in person in the building we will find an alternative. Let’s praise God that the first of our new members are beginning to come in in 2021. What a wonderful milestone for our church in spite of the serious challenges all around us. Jesus said, ” I will build my church and the gates of hell will nor prevail against it. “
Other membership courses will run throughout this year so if you want to sign up as a founder member in 2021 please speak to Pastor Roy
Once we have brought the first of our new members in on March 7th we will like last year be holding an AGM as we continue to lay out the church vision for the year ahead. The date of this will be confirmed with our church members but will likely be March or April. Please watch this space for further details. All are welcome to this but only church members will be allowed to vote.
Thank you to those who are giving regularly to our church. With us not being able to meet together, some people are continuing to ask how they can continue to support us. Please note the church bank account details below. You can give directly into the church bank account with your tithe or offering.
Lloyds Bank (Loughborough Branch)
Account Name: Castle Donington Community Church
Account Number: 62693060
Sort Code: 30 65 65
If you are a taxpayer then you can gift-aid your contributions. For more information please contact our Church Treasurer, Mrs Katharine Hebblethwaite. Her email address is email@example.com.
Prayer Stations – Action Stations
This section has now been relocated to the Prayers & Prayer request section of our website. Please visit it to obtain the latest prayers.