I recently heard a couple of jokes that tickled me:
My son Luke loves that we chose Star Wars characters as an inspiration when naming our kids. His sister Chewbacca and his brother Boba Fett are less amused.
I made a beginner’s mistake and went shopping on an empty stomach. I am now the happy owner of aisle 7.
I don’t suppose they’re really that funny, but the idea of calling a child ‘Chewbacca’ tickled me, and I’m trying so hard not to go shopping when I’m hungry – or stressed. Recently I had to go into hospital for some tests and whilst I sat in the waiting room for two hours I decided that a good use of my time would be to do an online shop. They called my name just as I was ‘checking out’, and the following day everything was delivered to my door. I think I bought the contents of aisle 7. My excuse is that much of isle 7 was on sale, but still.
It takes discipline not to shop when you’re hungry, or make a really important decision on a whim or the spur of the moment. And I had hoped that as I got older self-discipline would become easier. Nope. I still look for a bargain rather than sticking to my shopping list and leave important tasks until the last minute. In fact, since time seems to pass so much more quickly as I get older, the only trait that has grown stronger is my propensity to procrastinate.
But we still got to the 5-year milestone as a church! For me, with all of life’s challenges, it’s been more of a tortoise crawl than a hare’s race. But here we are. And over the last 5 years, we have achieved much more than I would have thought possible, including the creation of a couple of festivals. And even more strongly I believe that God called us together for a reason, that the Holy Spirit is our guide, and that we will continue to evolve into the living body of Christ.
It’s a good job Jesus is the head of the church. If it were me we’d still be in the starting gate. But Jesus worked through Ann to find us the Day Centre at a good rate; God has worked through preachers, and deacons, and board members, and pickle team members, and ministry leaders, Rev. Peta, in fact through us all, to create ‘church’. It’s really quite extraordinary.
What will the next 5 years bring? A bigger space is a must, as is a deeper understanding of the needs of the larger community. But if the last 5 years have taught me anything it’s that; despite us, and through us, God can do amazing things in this city. I have no doubt that the future is a rainbow land full of possibility. I’m so glad that we get to walk into it together.
I remember when there was no internet, no texts, no facebook mesenger, whatsap, or any other way of chatting with someone except the telephone. For David, who is blind, and lives out in Worthing, the telephone remains the main form of communication, and in this electronic age I imagine that can make you feel a little cut off. Why not give him a call? He’d love to chat with you. He’s a hive of useful information, a great listener, and loves to chat!
DIARY OF EVENTS
Thursday 30th January – Bible study, 7:30 (At Charlie’s home)
Sunday 2nd February – Anniversary service at The Somerset Day Ctr. 6 pm.
Tuesday 4th February – Prayer meeting, 7:30 (At Rev. Michael’s home)
Friday 7th February – Board meeting, 7:30 (At Keith’s home)
Thursday 13th February – Bible study, 7:30 (At Charlie’s home)
Tuesday 18th February – Prayer meeting 7:30 (At Rev. Michael’s home)
Thursday 27th February – Bible study 7:30 (At Charlie’s home)
Would you like to volunteer for Switchboard? Click HERE
This week a local newspaper asked me what my response was to the latest Church of England ruling on marriage. I thought you might like to see my reply….In our Sunday worship prayers yesterday we were mindful of the Church of England’s announcement on marriage. We prayed:
Lord, we lift to you the church of England which has ruled that sex is only for married opposite-sex couples and that any couples in a civil partnership or same-sex marriage fall short of your purpose for humanity. Forgive them for their ignorance and prejudice. Help them to see where your love is at work instead of trying to force you into a box of their own making. Leap from the tombs they try to imprison you with Lord, and be life and love in all healthy sexual relationships.
Throughout the bible, the idea of marriage evolves; from chattel to equality, from polygamy to monogamy, from arranged marriages to personal choice. Surely, just as marriage evolved over the thousand or so years that scripture was written, it has evolved in the two thousand years or so since then? Or do we think that God is no longer at work in the world, in our lives, and in our relationships?
Where there is love we see God (I John 4:8) because God is love. And sex is a gift from God, to be enjoyed in mutually beneficial loving relationships. Look around you at same-sex couples, nonmarried couples, and tell me that you can’t see God’s wonderful and powerful love at work there. If God is alive in their relationships then what a fool I would be to tell them that they are not blessed!
In my experience, God is not interested in sex of itself. God is interested in how we care for one another, how we love one another, that we live our life with integrity and in the service of love for one another. The rest is politics.
Rev. Michael Hydes
Workshop on Understanding and
Challenging Right Wing Terrorism
Training For Communities and Practitioners from across Statutory and Third Sector Partners
The threat posed by the ‘Right-Wing Terrorism’ has grown and its serious impact has been evident within the UK and internationally in terms of the number of terrorist incidents recently. Following the successful delivery of training last year to raise awareness of the working and dangers of right-wing terrorism, we have invited Small Steps trainers again to deliver further sessions to our communities and professionals from statutory organisations and third sector.
Far-right groups offer simplistic solutions to complex political issues. Training will ensure community leaders and professionals are well-prepared to challenge far-right ideology, identify and support individuals vulnerable to being drawn into far-right activities.
A number of sessions will be held in February 2020 (dates below). You can find full information on our website via this link Safeinthecity website
|10am – 12pm
|9:30am – 11:30am
|10am – 12pm
|5pm – 7pm
|10am – 12pm
All training will be held at the Council Chambers, at Hove Town Hall, Norton Road, Hove. BN3 3 BQ. You only need to attend one session. Please book your place on the training by emailing: Channel.Prevent@brighton-hove.gov.uk
Or calling (01273) 291115 / 290584
Please do contact me if you have any questions or want to discuss anything or advise me of any concerns. Look forward to hearing from you.
Prevent Coordinator, Safer Communities
B 9 Hove Town Hall, Norton Road, Hove. BN3 3BQ
Tel: (01273) 290584; Mob: 07717303292
To contact Channel Coordinator or to make inquiries email: Channel.Prevent@brighton-hove.gov.uk
For further information visit: http://www.safeinthecity.info/getting-help/preventing-terrorism-and-extremism