A very warm welcome to you to our worship on this third Sunday of Advent. A particular welcome to any visitors and those who are with us for the first time. May the joyful hope of Jesus Christ be with us all.
Christmas and Advent Services throughout the remainder of the month are included inside in a handy table format. Please do take this sheet away with you as a useful reminder. Service details can be also found on the Team Ministry website: www.langtreechurches.org and also the National Church of England “a Church Near You” site. It you’ve not explored your church’s page via that route, please do so.
I am also delighted to announce that the Revd John Blair has accepted the Bishop’s and my invitation to be the next House for Duty associate priest serving Ipsden and North Stoke. John has recently been an Anglican chaplain in Madeira, and before that served in parishes in Ireland, and as a Forces Chaplain. He and his wife Jean will be making their home among us early in the spring, and we are all looking forward to making them both feel very much at home here in the Langtree Team. Details of John’s licensing service will be forthcoming shortly.
Those of you in Whitchurch will be wondering about progress with your own House for Duty vacancy, I am sure. Your wardens and PCC chair are beginning to work with me on the production of a parish profile, and we are hopeful that we can begin advertising in the New Year. Please could I ask everyone to continue to pray for all our parishes in the Team at this busy time, when there is particular extra pressure upon everyone – clergy, wardens, musicians and other volunteers – amidst all the additional services that are happening, and cover that is required.
Nevertheless, I take comfort in the fact that, as a Church Family, we do not have to “deliver Christmas”. Christmas is God’s glorious gift to us, and has happened, fully and finally, in Bethlehem, two thousand years ago. Our labour is the constant prayer that Christ would be born again in the stables of our own hearts and lives, where he would find a welcome, and a home.
Shine, Jesus, Shine.
Your Rector Revd Canon Kevin Davies