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JOYTOBER2020

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JOYTOBER! -

What if we invented Joytober?!

I've been reading about joy and how it's choice we make, something we cultivate in our lives, and we often have a lot  to be thankful for, and can really bring joy in our lives by being more thankful. In October I'm going to share 31 ‘thank’ prompts - a sentence for you to complete - either in your head, online in the comments on Facebook or together with your family or even on Instagram and as we go through the month. October for many families can be hard as they look at the year we have had so far and begin the march towards Advent and Christmas but instead of dread, we'll be cultivating JOY! How about it? Are you in? I'll be hosting #Joytober #stcuthberts  on Facebook and Instagram -Send in your pictures of Joyful things through out the month and we will put them together for a large Activity picture online. And do post them too on both Facebook and Instagram using the hashtags above or by putting your sentences or pictures in the comments box each day. 

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FOODBANK COLLECTIONS 

Food Banks take a wide range of food items and a typical parcel will include cereal, soup, pasta, rice, pasta sauce, beans, tinned meat, tinned veg, tea and coffee, tinned fruit and biscuits. Please do not bring huge packs of rice or pasta 1Kg + as we cannot give them out. Please do not provide food with alcohol as again they cannot be given out eg Mince Pies with brandy! We do encourage you to think about treats such as chocolate or advent calendars as we move towards Christmas. 

Food Banks have worked with nutritionists to develop a food parcel that contains sufficient nutrition for adults and children, for at least three days of healthy, balanced meals for individuals and families.

On top of that they also take in a variety of non-food items, such as toiletries and hygiene products, including;

  • Toiletries – deodorant, toilet paper, shower gel, shaving gel, shampoo, soap, toothbrushes, tooth paste, hand wipes

  • Household items – laundry liquid detergent, laundry powder, washing up liquid

  • Feminine products – sanitary towels and tampons

  • Baby supplies – nappies, baby wipes and baby food.

  • ST Cuthberts is a donation Church and we regularly take donations to food bank every sunday evening.

4-6th DEc THE ANGEL SCARECROW FESTIVAL #comfortandjoy.

Our Angel Scarecrows will be made by parishioners and residents in their front Gardens and will carry messages of the Christmas story 

Each Scarecrow will contain a word such as Love, Peace, Emanuel, Hark the herald, Wise men, Joy, Hope etc etc. The will also contain the #stcuthberts #followthestar and will help to make a trail around the estate to bring the Christmas story to life. They may be a nativity angel/ or an everyday occupation angel such as Nurse, Doctor, plumber. police. the choice is yours but they must contain a message of hope around Christs Birth. Hopefully we will be able to incorporate the scarecrows with our ADVENT WINDOWS and make a Trail that we can Carol sing around the estate social distancing outside. this will be 5pm on the 5th Dec- if we are tier 2 if we are tier 3 then we will hold in church and church grounds 

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ADVENT WINDOWS 1ST DEC

ADVENT
What does the Lord ask of you?

To love mercy, act justly and walk humbly with your God. (Micah 6:8)Advent is a time of wonder and waiting. Wonder at the mystery of the incarnation: The Maker of the universe born as a helpless child. Wondering what on earth God is going to do next. And in this time of expectancy- we reflect on what is expected of us as God's family. Advent is a time of waiting- but that is not a passive thing.

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We need to walk into Advent with our eyes wide open.

We walk through wintery weather, festive preparations, stressful busyness, expectations that can’t easily be met: common experiences that we all do. We walk through memories of other Decembers, of happy and hard times with our own families. We walk through whatever is happening in the communities of which we are part whether that’s conflict or celebration.

We walk through a world where wars are being waged and babies are being born.

We are humbled by our inability to do much about what is wrong. But we do our best: To be kind, caring, to understand, the meaning of mercy. We do our best to be even handed, to act justly. We are helped in this by walking with other people, friends, family and Strangers- and we learn from all of them.  Most of all we are helped by the knowledge that God walks with us.

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This year where going bigger and its Advent Windows!

 

Here in St Cuthberts we are looking forward to our Advent windows. This is a new way of engaging with our community and gently spreading God's message, whilst participating in our community in a new and exciting way. In essence we are making our parishes into a life size Advent calendar and hopefully we will walk through them too!

 

Each day at 6pm throughout Advent, a different household will unveil their decorated windows to display a Christian Christmas Carol. (See list below). They will light it up in some way (even if it’s just the rooms normal light) so that it can be seen by the path or road outside.

For those of you who are on Facebook, there will be a special page linked to St Cuthberts page that will be for the Advent Windows this will place each day’s window at 6 pm so those of you who prefer to do the trail from the comfort of your home, this is the Facebook page for you! There will be a small reflection too as we look at each days Carol. Something to help us slow down even if for a few moments. 

I am also hoping that some parents may like to take their children around the trail (all 24 houses or more if more sign up) which will be around the estate and they can also see the the Angel scarecrows as they go. The Trail will be available at the back of church and on the Facebook page (Roads only no numbers of houses).

It is a wonderful way of telling God's story through images in the windows and showing God's love through hospitality to your neighbours and wider community.

I hope this becomes a new tradition in the parish and that we will spread Christ's love in an interesting and caring way to our community.

 Advent Windows

2020 Christmas Carols

  1.  The Angel Gabriel from heaven came

  2.  Once in Royal David’s city

  3.  Angels from the realms of glory

  4.  Deck the Halls with boughs of holly

  5.  O Holy Night

  6.  Ding Dong Merrily on High

  7.  God rest ye merry gentlemen

  8.  Hark the herald angels sing

  9.  It came upon a midnight clear

  10.  A boy is born in Bethlehem

  11.  In the bleak mid-winter

  12.  O come all ye faithful

  13.  Away in a Manger

  14.  Joy to the world

  15.  I saw three ships on Christmas day

  16.  Holly and the Ivy

  17.  O Little town of Bethlehem

  18.  See amid the winter snow

  19.  Silent Night

  20.  The first Noel

  21.  The Little Drummer boy

  22.  While shepherd watched their flocks by night

  23.  We three Kings of Orient are

  24.  See Him lying in a bed of straw (Calypso Carol)

The idea is that you pick a day that you will base your window on, so, if you pick day 14 you will base your window on Joy to the world- Try not to display/light up your window until the 14th.Dec You will then leave your window up until after christmas. You do not change your window every day - you pick one day and stick with it. If you have picked day 24 you will not display your window until the 24th Dec you may want to put parts together that you will display until then but something must be different on the 24th. Dec. please send a picture of your Window to revlauraleatherbarrow@gmail.com or whats app her so that she can place the it on the St Cuthberts Advent Windows Page on Facebook and write a reflection for it. Do send her the picture at least 24 hours ahead of the day if possible. 

I hope you all have fun and get creative! 

other events coming up:

Evening Course

The Sanctuary course runs weekly at 18:30 pm every wednesday. This is a course that is exploring mental health and how we can support people with mental health issues in our community better. During this time of Covid this seems very appropriate to our community. The course runs on Zoom weekly.