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www.silverendcongregationalchurch.org

KEEPING IN TOUCH
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.     1 Thessalonians 5:28

OCTOBER 2020

 

KEEP POSITIVE

Hello, I hope this newsletter finds you cheerful, I know that it’s hard being constantly bombarded by doom and gloom. We have a faithful God who we can talk to 24/7 and he will sustain us as we face each new challenge.

CHURCH – The Diaconate had a meeting at the beginning of last month and it was felt that re-opening any church based groups or services was too high a risk. This being due to all the rules and regulations that had to be adhered to. The next review will be in November. On the plus side the church halls will be opening to the Guiding Groups also Silver Tots and the Dance class. The church and the Groups have all produced risk assessments to cover the guidelines and measures have been put in place to keep everyone as safe as possible. I thank God for helping to make this happen. It has been so sad to see our church building looking so abandoned and closed. Please pray for the groups returning that they may be kept safe.

COFFEE MORNINGS I apologise that we are not able to get this back open as yet. Sadly we cannot have more than one group meeting in the hall each day.

Outreach Malcolm and Pauline are working hard to keep us all connected and doing a great job! Thanks Malcolm for all the interesting and topical thoughts.

St. Francis Church. A Service will be held on the 4th October, at 9.30. The first service will be HC with Rev. Paul, following on for the remainder of October with a Morning Prayer Service being led by Ruth and once a month the Rev. Val Drury. Rev. Paul will continue with his on-line service every Sunday as well as other duties.

NEWS DURING THESE EXTRAORDINARY TIMES

Marie has kindly written this to let us all know how Elsie and family are doing. Amazing‼

I just wanted to give a little update on Elsie as I know some of our friends don't have access to her Facebook page. 

Well since we last saw each other Elsie has turned 3!

It's been strange staying home for so long, we spent from March until July in full lockdown and we learnt a lot in that time. I learnt how to put physiotherapy into much more of our daily routine. I also learnt how not to home school, it's definitely not as easy as the teachers make it look, but as a family we got through it and the lovely phone calls, deliveries and offers of help from the congregation really did lift our spirits when things were hard. We would especially like to thank Pauline for the beautiful cardigans she knitted Elsie and also Sharon for the updates and deliveries during the last few months. 

We had many appointments with hospital consultants including Great Ormond Street and as everything has changed we were able to 'go' to these appointments online or by telephone I hope some of these continue this way as the travelling to London takes its toll after a while. 

In July we took on a 1 million steps walking challenge to raise some much needed funds for Elsie's physiotherapy and to help some of the charities that had been helping Elsie while we were in lockdown. 

Thanks to technology we were able to have physiotherapy sessions via the computer guided by our private physio during July and continuing into August. 

unfortunately all NHS children's services were stopped and most continue to be on hold for the time being. 

We completed our family steps challenge with some lovely walks around the countryside some more difficult than others and all our walks had to have some accessibility for Elsie's pram although towards the end of the month we trialled and invested in a carrier so Elsie can be transported safely on my back but she certainly is getting heavy. 

August allowed us to have a break at our caravan in Suffolk and the change of scenery did us all the world of good, we feel very lucky to be able to enjoy time away and Elsie had fun on the beach, paddling in the sea and laying on the sand. Suffolk has some of the biggest beaches so socially distancing was fairly easy but our time away was certainly different to other years. 

September has seen the return of a little bit of our normal routine. Elsie has rejoined her wonderful nursery but we are having to take things slowly as the last few months being in our quiet family bubble has meant noise and new surroundings are having a big impact on how Elsie is coping. We have also been fortunate to now have access to a private swimming pool where Elsie can take part in hydrotherapy as part of a small class of other children with various abilities, she moves much more freely in the water and it’s an absolute joy to see her progressing and interacting. 

We hope you are all well, we miss everyone from church but have been enjoying Malcolm’s regular online services for which we thank you. 

Thank you everyone for your continued support love and prayers, we hope to see you all when it's safe to do so. 

Rev. John D. Parker Minister Emeritus

John died peacefully with his family around him on Saturday 12th September aged 90yrs. What a wonderful man! A great Christian man who dedicated his life to God. He served the Congregational Church here for nearly 40 years and was held in great esteem by many. John was very well known to many in this village and further afield. John was someone you could rely on, who was always there if you needed help in anyway. He was so kind and generous to so many people, always going the extra mile to help. John had a cracking sense of humour, he was an excellent cook. He and Lyn made a great team, they did so much for people in Silver End. John was also a very serious man, very intelligent and knowledgeable. He served the Congregational Federation in Nottingham, as a tutor and held the position of Chair of Council and President. I am sure those of you who knew him and Lyn will treasure your memories and hold them in your heart. Please keep John’s family in your prayers.

OUR PRAYERS

Pray for the Government, as we seem to be starting a second wave of this terrible virus we ask God for great wisdom to do all they can to protect people and the economy.

We give thanks that the church has found different ways of reaching out to the community. We thank God that our own buildings are once again in use, we ask for protection for all involved.

Pray for all schools, their pupils and all staff members. It has been a very difficult time making adjustments, trying to maintain safety and normality. Many children have found settling back into school very difficult. We especially pray for organisations like C.Y.O who work with schools and pupils in so many ways. Pray that the Lord will be with them and help them.

Once again please pray for those who have lost their job or face losing it at the end of next month when the furlough scheme finishes. Pray for those who are trying to get the economy back on track. There are so many who are facing a very difficult time ahead.

Pray also for all working in the NHS or as support staff.  We know that some people are beginning to get hospital appointments now, we pray that this will continue.

Lord we pray for John Parker’s family. We give You thanks for his life, which was dedicated to You Lord and in Your service

Lord of the Church, please send Christians into our village to share the gospel; that many men women and children might know You as Saviour and Lord.

Lord in Your mercy hear our prayer.

 

THANKS & NEWS

Giving/Offerings Thank you so much to those who have given me your monetary offerings for the church and donations for Elsie. Thanks to Pauline who kindly picked them up as she went around with the CD’s. It will make such a difference and enable us to give generously to other good causes. I will be making a donation from the church to MAF (Mission Aviation Fellowship) in memory of John. Any monies given to me separately will be added to the final amount. I will be raising a cheque by Thursday 8th October so please let me know if you would like to donate via the church. Thanks              Tel Sharon 583913

We give thanks for the Harvest. At the beginning of this month we usually celebrate Harvest Thanksgiving. What a special weekend this usually is with our church decorated in a very traditional way. We are fortunate to live in the countryside and we see the evidence of the changing seasons. Springtime, Summer, Harvest, Autumn and Winter. Although this has been a very difficult year for the farmers with the drought, we give thanks for all the many blessings we enjoy and take for granted.

Visits I thought you would all like to know I saw Rose a couple of Fridays ago. We had a lovely afternoon together with Margaret, Rose’s daughter. We met in Margaret and Michael’s garden. The weather was perfect and it was so beautiful to sit outside safely enjoying a catch up chat, whilst being surrounded by nature. Rose looks really well, she sent her love to everyone. She said Margaret and Michael had been wonderful and she doesn’t know what she would have done without them. I have also visited Anne and picked her up for a Morning Prayer service at St. Francis. She celebrated her birthday last week and has ventured out a little on her bike.

Thanks everyone for continuing to keep in touch with one another, with phone calls, cards, letters. You are doing a great job. The Church building may be closed…but the Church is still active and alive! We are the church the not the building.

Allan and I have been blessed with another granddaughter, Florence Maeve Gray. She weighed 6.9oz and is beautiful. Our son, Sam and his wife Sarah are thrilled and doing well. We are so blessed to have all our grandchildren living locally. We praise and thank God for the gift of new life. It has been a difficult time to have a new born baby with all the government rules, but all is going well.

Peter Game I heard some sad news today that Peter died last Wednesday 30th September. As many of you know he has been ill for some time, but has kept cheerful and positive. Peter was a great friend to many folk in this village by the many gardens he looked after over the years and the gardening work he carried out for the Parish Council keeping our village looking nice. He was a very quiet gentle man who loved his garden, the countryside and helping people. I will miss our chats when he was out walking Penny his little dog. Please keep Daphne and his family in your prayers.

Keep in your hearts other friends from the coffee morning who have lost dear ones during these last months. It has been such a difficult time for so many in all sorts of different ways. Please keep all our fellowship in your prayers.