Rev Derek Shaw lead our annual candlelit carol service to a very full chapel. The usual mix of carols and readings was added to with the children acting out a Nativity scene and the choir singing from John Rutter and the Twelve Days of Christmas. The later was even explained how it relates to some of the Christian elements it refers to. Four calling birds relating to the four Gospels for instance. Baby Lyla stole the show in her part as the Angel Gabriel in the nativity scene and then all joined singing Away in a Manger. After the service there was a superb spread of cakes and mince pies - we were looked after well by the ladies and their team.
The now familiar popular messy church was well attended by twenty children of all ages. They made festive items ranging from sewing up Christmas decorations, card baubles, Christmas trees and snowmen faces and Christmas biscuits. Jackie read the stories before the tea. Thank you to all our supporters.
A good turn out raising £125 for the Sifa Fireside. We welcomed a few new attenders including two ladies that had lived in the village many years and had always meant to come along; hope to welcome them back next year.
Diane lead us in an alternate style service which centered in the story of the three wise men. We discussed what we knew about the story and the myths - no one ever mentioned there were only ever three kings or even that they are kings only that they were a number of wise men who bought three gifts. The layout of the church was altered with tables and chairs to help with our creations of candle lights and stars.
Forty eight shoe boxes were delivered to the Samaritans purse. Thank you to all who have assembled a box for deprived children in the Middle East.
Rev Faria lead our worship today which included a celebration of our JMA collectors, many of whom were able to be in church to collect their ribbons. The service reflected the young people contribution to the life of the church as well as more world wide issues especially concerning the recent developments in Farai's home country of Zimbabwe. We finished with the usual tea coffee and cakes in the school room where some products purchased from The Purple Community fund were showcased.
A busy morning presided over for the last time by Jean and Beryl who have decided to hang up their coffee morning boots. A potted cyclamen were presented to both in recognition of their support. Warwickshire rural watch coordinator Carol Cotteril and police community officer Jane Owen joined us with a display table, introducing themselves and giving out safety passes and safety awareness packs. This month £125 was raised for Dogs for Good, which sponsors dogs for community and family environments as well as for more traditional disability helping dogs. Whatever the situation these dogs are a therapy and support for their owners. To help raise further funds a Manchester City football was offered for auction by Sheila and Vincent was the winning bidder who paid £15 in the auction. Sheila daughter is offering a service to make front door Christmas wreaths for £15. £5 of this will be donated to Cancer Research and are available bespoke in any colour. With so many people present the tea and cakes more or less sold out.
Grandma Pauline reports :-
My gorgeous granddaughter, Lyla Robyn, was the centre of a beautiful service held
at the Nether Whitacre Methodist Church on 15 th October. As Jesus took children in
his arms and blessed them, so Lyla was blessed. Her parents (Alan and Aimee) and
everyone present prayed this prayer for her
God our creator,
We thank you for the gift of Lyla Robyn.
She has been entrusted to our care.
May we be patient and understanding,
Ready to guide and to forgive,
So that through our love
She may come to know your love.
The service was shared by Revd Farai Mapamula and Revd Marjorie Walton and
was very much a family affair. Aunties Kelly and Hayley read the gospel – Matthew
19:13-15 and Aunties Penny and Joanne read St Paul’s hymn of love – 1Corinthians
13. All Lyla’s cousins gave gifts. Reece – a Bible, Frank – a prayer book, Joe – a
candle, Maisie – a copy of the Bible readings written on a scroll and Ruby – a poem
written on a scroll.
The theme of the whole service was love. The readings, the poem, the prayers were
all about love and the Whitacre Choir sang “All you need is love”. Lyla Robyn has
brought so much love into our family and so much love into the world.
We met today to raise £76 for Thrive. Quite a few folks away on holiday but a lively and chatty crowd nonetheless!
Two celebratory services taken by Rev Farai Mapamula and Rev Karen Webber. The church was beautiful as ever showing off the local produce and flowers as well as some tapestry pictures. The dahlias were given by Arthur and the tapestry work was completed by the family of our church auditor Gill Mayberry. Gladys Morris was Gills Mother and her amazing talent for crochet, knitting and tapestry continued to be worked well into her 90's when failing eyesight sadly forced her to stop. However she did live to receive her 100th birthday telegram and her skills continue in the family with her Grandaughter Amy completing the balloon and boat tapestry which was also on display. The evening service also featured a composition by Rutter beautifully performed by the choir. The traditional coal, water and harvest loaf did make an appearance at the evening service to complete the celebrations. The loaf has now gone to Small Heath to be used at their Harvest service next weekend.
A total of £!42 was raised over the festivities. The tinned and dried foods collected at both services are to be donated to Tamworth food bank.
Whitacre Congregation is a vibrant mix of young and old who enjoy meeting for Sunday worship. Do come and join us.