Chris’ letter for October
I’m sitting in ‘The London Way’ café at the station feeling grumpy.
I’m off to the Synod Office for a meeting feeling like it’s a day of my life I’ll never get back. I always fume that they have picked a difficult place to get to unless you drive. As my Zoe isn’t up to motorways (top speed is just below 60mph) so I always have to spend hours getting there on public transport. I have to remind myself that it is very easy to stop seeing ourselves as part of something bigger and writing everything else off - after all it isn’t like any of us have much day to day contact with the wider URC.
But we are committed to be part of something larger than what we have in Hull, and part of that means intentionally doing things even when we find it annoying and inconvenient. In my case a deathless meeting that will take up the entire day. I remind myself not to only expect everything to be simple or on my terms. Relationships require effort to maintain.
It is also the same with our team of four churches. We have come a long way in three years. I’m really hoping that these relationships continue to mature this year. There are four ways we can do this.
Firstly, by supporting events that are happening in each other’s churches. For example, Zion celebrates the bicentenary of its building in June 2019. There will be celebrations but also crucially a new roof. They will be fundraising for it and it would be a good thing to support them in attending events and sponsoring fundraising activities. Similarly, South Ella is looking for a big push to finish its fundraising for the Ghana fund.
Secondly, by attending something in a team church means we support and encourage each other. St Ninian’s recently decided to worship at Swanland on the August Bank Holiday to support what would have been a “slow Sunday”. More of doing this is good, so we are a church family that prays and plays together.
Thirdly, by telling others beyond your local church what is happening. If you know a knitter, tell them about Knit and Natter. If you know someone with dementia mention the dementia films at South Ella. Our best advertisement is still word of mouth.
Finally, I ask you all to pray for me, the interns and all who are part of our churches. Without God we can do nothing. Prayer is always an enormous support.
So please read this newsletter carefully. Try something new that is maybe not at your church. Tell someone about a film or a group. And pray for all the activities that are contained in these pages. And like me huffing and puffing as I now sit on the TransPennine Express going over to Leeds; remember that our relationships need to be tended if they are to flourish.
Just to say that the meeting wasn’t all bad and they even managed to source something gluten free for me to eat!