CHRISTIAN AID 15TH - 21ST MAY 2005
ÔWe believe in life before death.Õ We think life is for living, not merely surviving.
We invite Ickenham people to give generously to fight poverty.
Last year Ickenham people generously dug deeply into their wallets to raise the record sum of £8,051. This will bring about a better life for people in poor communities. Tragically there is still an almost overwhelming amount to be done. Ickenham people will be moved to dig even more deeply into their wallets again this year.
Act to challenge injustice.
As hosts to the G8 our government and our Prime Minister are in a unique position to influence the most wealthy and powerful nations of the world. In Christian Aid Week we will be asking our friends and donors in Ickenham to ÔVote for Trade JusticeÕ. Christian Aid hopes to collect one million signed postcards nationwide. These will ask the British Government to press other rich administrations to change trade rules from free trade policies, which are making poor farmers even poorer, to fair trade policies that will enable farmers to work their way out of poverty.
Collectors are desperately needed for the house-to-house collection in Ickenham.
We need to recruit many more kind people to take an active part to make the door-to-door red envelope collection successful. There is a particular need for collectors in the Aylsham Drive and Glebe Avenue areas where there are many compassionate people waiting to respond to Christian AidÕs appeal, but do not receive a red envelope. We also need to take some of the load from collectors who last year had too great a burden and were exhausted by the end of the week. We need, also, to replace those long serving, dedicated, collectors who, sadly, are no longer with us. Experience has shown that people are more likely to volunteer to collect if asked, personally, and if the task is not too demanding. Please ask your friends or neighbours to spare just two hours of their valuable time to deliver and collect about 40 Christian Aid red envelopes from houses near their own neighbourhood.
Please phone Christian Aid Week local co-ordinator Bernard Pearce on 01895 673596 if you know anyone who is willing to help. The Christian Aid Committee will be delighted to hear from you.
ÔThere has been a real change because now we have more of a future. We were not expecting this kind of help, but we did need it. It has brought light back into our lives. It turned our lives around and I am now able to share my fortune with others. My eldest children go to school and I thank God for this. Everything we have is a grace from God.Õ Antonio Fundice Tomo, whose family has received support from Christian Aid's partner in Mozambique.
DROP-IN FOR THE BEREAVED. Third Monday of each month. St GilesÕ Church Hall, 2 p.m. to 3.30 p.m. A friendly, informal opportunity for a chat, over a cup of tea, with other bereaved people and pastoral visitors. The next meeting is Monday 16th May (also Monday 20th June). Just come along, or ring the Rectory (622970), if you would like to talk to someone first. The Evening Drop-In will be held on the 1st Wednesday of each month, from 7.30 to 9.00 p.m. in the United Reformed Church Hardwick Room..(4th May and 1st June)
ICKENHAM GOOD NEIGHBOUR SCHEME exists to serve the whole of Ickenham. WeÕre here to assist in an emergency. If you need help, the daytime contact numbers are: 01895 633020 or 01895 235061.
FROM ST GILESÕ CLERGY
Well, I survived Lent without any biscuits, or rather with only one lapse when I had a Ôsenior momentÕ and picked up a biscuit with my coffee after a Sunday morning service, dunked it in my coffee and had eaten it before I realised my mistake!
So, I survived Lent with only one biscuit, but so what? What did it do, if anything for my spiritual journey? Well, for a start it taught me discipline. For the first week or two I really had to steel myself not to indulge. Secondly, when my hand did stray towards the biscuit tin I took the opportunity to pray and so I found myself praying a lot more than usual.
When you think about it, prayer is a most peculiar activity! We are speaking to someone we cannot see and yet we have to have faith that He hears us and what is more, reacts to our prayer. Many people know their need of prayer, but donÕt know how to go about it. Indeed, the disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray and he gave them what we now know as The LordÕs Prayer.
Prayer can be anything from a short Òarrow prayerÓ such as ÒGod please help me!Ó shot towards God in time of crisis, to longer times of meditation on a particular Bible passage, to silent contemplation when not a word is said or thought but one simply (not simple at all!) just tries to be in the presence of God.
Unlike any other activity, you can never say that you are good or bad at prayer, it is something that you do which, the more you do, the more you realise its value in your life and for the lives of others.
Dostoyevsky wrote the following good advice in The Brothers Karamazov, ÒDo not forget to say your prayers. If your prayer is sincere, there will be every time you pray a new feeling containing an idea in it, an idea that you did not know before, which will give you fresh courage; you will then understand that prayer is education.Ó Education indeed, with God as the teacher. May your prayer life bring you strength and hope.
Yours in Christ.
Revd. Ken Tombs