Knitted Gifts Update

Margaret and the volunteers of the Night Shelter have sent the following letter of thanks for the hats, gloves and scarves which were hand knitted for the clients of the Night Shelter:

Thank you so much for doing the knitting for our clients. The hats, gloves and scarves have been extremely helpful to us for handing out to our clients. We usually put them by the door so that they (the clients) can help themselves when they leave in the morning. If they are not stopping overnight with us we give the knitted items away in the evening and they  are very thankful.

Margaret goes on to say that the Night Shelter was open as usual during Wednesday and Sunday of Christmas week and they had plenty of volunteers including some from the Winter Night Shelter. The Winter Night Shelter had provided a place of refuge during other nights of the Christmas week.

ANGELS UPDATE

All our 550 knitted angels were distributed around the town and also to people we knew, during the first two weeks of December. It was interesting to watch people’s reactions as they discovered the angels on railings, on street benches and on tree branches. Their faces lit up in delight as they realised that an angel had been left for them to find.  Two teenage girls plucked one from a tree and then looked round to try to find another so that they could each have one.

A grandma and a little boy asked Julia if she was “the angel lady”. The grandma told the child that he had to give it to someone he loved very much and he promised to give it to his little sister. A lady saw one of our distributers leaving the angels on benches in Jephson Gardens and went to pick one up. She looked at her “find” in disbelief and then turned to the distributer and said “What a lovely idea. It shows that people care”. Our Brownies left angels along Radford Road and were rewarded when a Pizza shop owner invited them in and cooked 3 huge pizzas for them free of charge! One Brownie said, “That was the best Brownie meeting ever!”

Each of the 550 angels gave pleasure to the finders and, hopefully, reminded them of the true meaning of Christmas. We were delighted that, as a result of finding angels in the town, six people came along to our service of Readings and Carols on December 23rd and said how much the angels had meant to them. Pat gave some to her son, Doug, to give out at the Christmas Fête at the Children’s Nursery where he works.

Doug writes, I just wanted to say thank you for the knitted angels you let me have to give out at my nursery. Everyone who was offered one was thrilled with them and thought it was a lovely idea . They went to staff, parents and children and have travelled to places such as Cornwall, Devon, Northampton and a couple of other places in the U.K. I believe one is even on its way to Spain.

Well done to all those involved in making them, they have certainly spread a bit of joy this Christmas”.

Thank you so much to all our knitters (especially Bella who topped the list of angel producers) and to those who “bagged” the angels and distributed them. You brought pleasure to many! We shall be knitting angels again for distribution at Advent 2019 so please start knitting NOW!!!

 

CHRISTINGLE SERVICE 2018

Children and adults met together on Sunday December 9th to enjoy a Christingle Service led by the Revd. James Church and trainee URC Minister, Fiona Elvins. The music group led the songs.

The service focussed on Jesus, the Light of the World. We began by lighting the second Advent candle symbolising Love and then everyone enjoyed the story of “When Santa learned the Gospel”. telling how Santa realised that only God is perfect but that everyone should endeavour to do their very best to be like him.

Children and adults joined lustily in singing “This Little Light of Mine” and performed actions to the words.

Fiona led us in the making of Christingles and explained the significance of the red ribbon, the fruits of the earth and the candle. The lights were dimmed as we lit our Christingles.

 

.

 

Nativity Sets Exhibition

During Advent Marjorie and John Carrier have taken their Nativity Exhibition to Hilton Methodist Church, Cambridge and this week it is at Abbey Hill United Reformed Church in Kenilworth.

The organisers of the Church in Hilton were delighted with the response. Photos can be viewed here

Some of the comments written in the Visitors’ Book

 

There has been a lot of interest from the local press and from social media. You can see a short video on Facebook by clicking on this link and then scrolling down the page:

https://www.facebook.com/BBCCoventryandWarwickshire

TThe opening times for the Exhibition at Abbey Hill URC are as follows:

Each day from Monday Dec 4 to Friday Dec 7    Each day from 2pm until 5pm

Saturday Dec. 8    10.30am -5pm

Sunday Dec. 9        2pm – 5pm

Sorry. You are now too late to see the Exhibition! Watch out for it next year! It may be at a church near you!

.

.

 

CHRISTMAS ANGELS READY

 

A group met together on Thursday afternoon Nov. 8th and amidst lots of hilarity,  prepared over 500 knitted angels for the local community.

The angels will be distributed during the first week of Advent and will be left in strategic places around the town to convey Christmas greetings to the local community. Some will be placed on street benches, others on railings, in telephone kiosks, in the library and in shops.

It is hoped that the people finding the angels will realise that the angels have all been made with loving care and that they bring joy to the receivers at Christmas time. Also with each angel will be a little card giving details of the Christmas services being held at Radford Road and inviting people to come along and find the true meaning of Christmas.

Many thanks to all those who gave time and skill to produce this heavenly host.

.

.

.

WORKING PARTY

A working party wielded tools and paint brushes to give a facelift to the Church Hall and to do running repairs to several outdoor jobs. The group, spearheaded by Bridget, tackled the tasks with verve and vigour. Much light hearted banter made the morning speed by and by lunch time (fish and chips eaten together in the hall) the areas tackled looked much improved. 

Well done to all the volunteers, some of whom are pictured in the following photos.

 

.

.

DEDICATION OF GIFTS TO OTHERS

 

 

On Sunday November 4th 2018 the Revd. James Church dedicated

shoeboxes filled with goodies for children overseas who have little 

 

 

knitted scarves, gloves and hats for clients of our Night Shelter who often have to live on the streets in the bitterly cold winter weather

 

 

 

 

 

 

and angels which members of the congregation had knitted. These will be placed around our town for local people to find and to take home. A small card will be included bringing love and greetings from Radford Road Church and inviting them to our Christmas services.

 

 

 

.

.

.

 

CHILDREN’S ACTIVITY MORNING NOV 1ST 2018: ‘JESUS LIGHT OF THE WORLD’

Many thanks to all who volunteered at our Light Party Holiday Club this half term. It was a joy to seen 20 children take part, we learnt that Jesus said that he was ‘the Light of the World’, but we also remembered that Jesus told his disciples that they are to be ‘light to the world’. We played games passing on the light. Learnt a memory verse: ‘His life gave light to all’ – John 1:4 and carved Jesus pumpkins to remind us that Jesus’ light shines in the darkness. It was especially lovely to see many of the young people singing and marching along to the song, ‘This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine’ at the end of the club. 
.
.
.
.                                                                      What a wonderful day everyone had!

 

 

 

 

.
.
.

REVD. JOHN CARRIER 60 YEARS ANNIVERSARY

 

 

The Revd. John Carrier was presented with a certificate at the Autumn Synod at Rugby URC to celebrate the occasion of 60 years since his Induction to the URC Ministry.

John particularly wanted the certificate presented to him in front of the local congregation at Radford Road and so the Revd. James Church presented the certificate again at the morning service on October 28th 2018.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

 

WORKING PARTY

Are you able to wield a paintbrush, bash with a hammer, or just make cups of tea and coffee for the workers?

Do come along in your oldest clothes at 10.00am on Thursday November 8th to do lots of small jobs that need fixing.

Remember, Many hands make light work! Work and have fun together!

For those who wish to stay to “bag” the angels in the afternoon a fish and chip lunch is proposed.

 

CHRISTMAS SERVICES

Dec. 9th    10.30am Christingle Service led by the Revd. James Church

Dec. 23rd  10.30am Service of Carols and Readings led by the Elders

Dec. 25th  10.00am Christmas Day Service led by the Revd. Sam McBratney

 

HARVEST 2018

Our Harvest Festival Service 2018 was led by Mr Paul Tennyson on Sunday September 23rd 2018.

The Flower Team had decorated the church beautifully to celebrate this occasion.

This was an All Age Parade Sunday and the Uniformed Organisations attended.

The congregation brought gifts of packet and tinned food and this will be given to the Night Shelter and the Food Bank.

.

.

.

Oct 6th CRAFT FAIR

 

 Our Annual Craft Fair was held on Oct 6th from 11.00am until 2.00pm

There were some wonderful items made by local craftspeople and people bought them to give as ideal Christmas presents for friends and family. 

There were stalls including wood turning, jewellery, books, home made cards, fabric items, silk printing and loads, loads more. The church was also selling cakes, gifts, bric a brac, jigsaws and bowls of hyacinth bulbs. Food was available throughout the event and entry was free.

It was unfortunate that heavy rain fell throughout the day and this deterred some people from attending. They missed a treat!

Click on the following link to see pictures of the day.

‘); ?>

.

.

Last Night of the Proms & Launch of New Mission Project 2018/19

Watching The Last Night of the Proms has become a tradition at Radford Road church and on September 8th 2018 we again gathered together for the live broadcast from the Albert Hall.

The conductor, Sir Andrew Davies explained that the Proms has become a nationwide celebration and he introduced audiences in Hyde Park, Colwyn Bay, Belfast  and Glasgow who had gathered at outdoor venues to be part of the Last Night at the Proms.

The gathering at Radford Road was small in comparison but, nevertheless, everyone entered into the spirit of the evening. Several people had dressed in patriotic garb and everyone waved flags and sang lustily after enjoying the splendid fish and chip supper.

We enjoyed the singing of Canadian baritone, Gerald Finlay and the enthusiastic saxaphone playing of Jess Gillam, the youngest ever soloist at the Proms. In 2016 she had been a finalist in the BBC’s Young Musician of the Year.

We all joined in with the traditional singing of sea shanties whilst some of our group danced energetically at the back of the room!

The commemoration of the centenary of the ending of the First World War was marked by the singing of classics such as Rose of Picadee, It’s a Long way to Tipperary, Keep Right on to the end of the Road and Keep the Home Fires Burning.

No Last Night is complete without the singing  of Rule Britannia, Jerusalem and Land of Hope and Glory and the evening finished with us all joining in the singing of Auld Lang Syne and the National Anthem.

Our new Mission Project  “World Bicycle Relief” was launched at this event.

Our new project is World Bicycle Relief which enables people who live in rural regions of developing countries to conquer the challenge of distance, to achieve independence and to thrive.

In many of these areas walking is the only mode of transport and so to have a Buffalo bike, a whole new series of possibilities opens up.

These bikes  are specially made in the locality where they will be used, and the sturdy bikes can cope with the rough terrain.

In this country we complain about potholes in the roads but in many remote areas of developing countries there are no tarmac roads – only rough tracks. Hence they are given the name “Buffalo Bikes” because each one is as strong as a buffalo.

If the only means of transport is by walking, everyday tasks become a struggle against time and tiredness. Going to school, visiting the health clinic, delivering goods to market are really challenging.

On our display board we have pictures of a few people whose lives have been transformed when they have received a Buffalo bike.

 

 Royce is a community Health Worker. Before she had a bike, Royce would walk 7 kilometres a day to visit 3 patients. Now she can visit 18 patients a day thanks to her Buffalo Bike.

Ethel is 15 years old and it took her more than 2 hours every day to get to school. Now she has a bike it takes her 45 minutes. She wants to go to school as her aim is to be a nurse. She has to go over hilly, lonely, country to get to school and now she feels much safer and can cover the distance much more easily.

Dixon had a bike before but it was a ramshackle bike and he couldn’t rely on it. He is a butcher and he saw how local farmers benefited from having Buffalo Bikes. They could get their milk and meat to market easily. Now that Dixon has a Buffalo Bike, his business is expanding as he can travel to market and deliver meat to his customers far easier than before.

These are three people who have benefited from being given a Buffalo Bike. There are many others just like Royce, Ethel and Dixon whose lives have been changed by the ownership of a Buffalo Bike.  But there are many, many more people, schoolchildren, nurses, health visitors and traders whose lives would change radically if only they had this simple form of transport.

Each bike costs £96 and we hope to raise £1000 to buy 10 bikes plus repair kits. Ten isn’t very many when you consider the need but it will be wonderful for those 10 people and will transform their lives and also the lives of their communities.

 

.It was an evening of enjoyment and fun for us all.

.

.

.

FREE Brunch for Students!!

Thank you to everyone who supported the Students’ Welcome Brunch on Saturday 13th October, especially Margaret who provided the catering and Jenny and Andrew who encouraged people passing by to join us.

It was great to talk, and show our building, to a small number of friendly students who had heard about the event on Facebook or who live in shared housing nearby and who saw our leaflets and banner. We will keep in contact and hope to see them at future events. It appears that Music and Big

Breakfasts are of particular interest to this age group. We also reached out to others in our community who were given a welcome and encouraged to come.

We are learning about ways of inviting people in to our building, whether through social media or directly when we are open.  We pray that our

outreach and relationships with student neighbours and the community will grow.

 

 

WELCOME TO FIONA – OUR NEW URC STUDENT MINISTER

Students training for the URC Ministry usually spend a period of time towards the end of their course working alongside an ordained Minister. This gives them valuable experience at grass roots level.

We are fortunate that a trainee Minister, Fiona Elvins, from Westminster College, Cambridge, will be working alongside James from September 2018 until the middle of next year.

Fiona has written a short piece to introduce herself and we kook forward to welcoming her.

Fiona writes:

My name is Fiona Elvins and I am a final year Student Minister. I was able to follow my call about 11 years ago – only to find that I was too old!

Never being suppressed for long, the two churches that I was leading as Elder in Local leadership, (one from 8 years ago), eventually helped me to put forward a resolution to Synod then to General Assembly for the age limit to be removed for people training to be Non-Stipendiary Ministers. We eventually succeeded and here I am!

I met Ivor about nine years after he lost his first wife to cancer – and we married within the year following our meeting!

So, we have his 2 daughters and 5 grandchildren whom we both adore – they range from age 11 to 25! Two are albino and all are adorable.

Ivor and I like our holidays to be “Day trips to New York! We go on QM2 and it takes 7 nights to get there – 1 day there and 7 nights to come home – most relaxing!

I shall be “shadowing” James until May next year and will be working at both Radford Road  Church and Lillington Free Church and also doing some other work at Westminster College in Cambridge as well as learning about Dementia in Solihull, close to where I live.

I thank you in advance for this opportunity and I look forward to meeting you all.

May God bless this partnership. Fiona

 

Mission Project 2017/18 “Footprints”

Our Mission Project for 2017/18 has coming to an end and we are pleased to report that our £1000 target has been reached. A cheque was presented to the Revd. Clive Fowle during the Morning Service on August 5th for the continuation of ‘Footprints’, his peace and reconciliation work in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Clive thanked the congregation of Radford Road Church for the cheque and for the support given to the project. He is hoping that a group of people who have benefitted from the scheme will visit England in the autumn and he hopes to arrange a visit for them to Radford Road Church.

 

In a recent News Update Clive wrote:

The Touch of Hope team Clive, Judith and Nena has been very active over the last few weeks leading two workshops in Bosnia with a group of 12 primary and secondary school teachers.

 The first workshop was on the theme of Forgiveness. We heard different stories about Forgiveness including that of Jo Berry and Pat Magee. Jo and Pat work with the Forgiveness Project. Jo’s father Sir Anthony Berry MP was killed in the IRA bomb attack on the Grand Hotel Brighton when the Conservative Party conference was taking place in 1984. The workshop was very challenging for the group for whom the whole theme of Forgiveness is very difficult because of so many atrocities that took place in the war in the 90s.

 The second workshop, a fortnight later, was on the theme of Reconciliation and was equally challenging.

 The workshops were held in Kozarica Dubica. a small town standing on the banks of the river Una which form the border between Croatia and Bosnia.

We feel the time is right to bring a group over from Bosnia and Croatia to Nuneaton in the early Autumn for a study visit and workshop. At the time of writing we cannot give exact dates and details but we will be looking for hosts and offers of help for the visit.

 We are hoping to have a high profile public meeting on the theme of Forgiveness at which visitors from Bosnia will speak alongside two other speakers.

 As soon as details are confirmed we shall let you all know but in the meantime we would value your thoughts and prayers for the visit and for the public meeting.

For further details contact me or look at our website footprintstouchofhope@gmail.com .

Thanks

Clive

 

 

After the cheque from Radford Road Church was presented, Clive wrote the following letter to say Thanks from the Touch of Hope:

On 5th August I was presented with a cheque for £1000 for the work of Touch of Hope from Radford Road Church. We thank you most sincerely for this amount which will be used particularly for our work in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Hvala ljepo (which is Croatian for thank you!)

It seems incredible that it was 20 years ago when I was catapulted into Radford Road by the Methodist Stationing System! Ann and I moved from inner city Birmingham to Leamington Spa and Whitnash. It was quite a move! I remember saying in my ‘welcome’ speech that I was committed to working in the former Yugoslavia. I rejoice in the fact that you all embraced the work in Croatia immediately and we had a few groups visiting the church and they were always made very welcome. Often I see members of these groups in Croatia and they always remark on the warmth of the hospitality they were shown when they visited Radford Road.

I wanted to share with you a story of what happened on one of the workshops in Bosnia in May this year.

A big part of our work is to train facilitators to run workshops in their own communities. This is Unit 3 of our training and consists of training in facilitation skills. The course teaches participants about planning and leading workshops. On all our workshops we try to have a trainee facilitator.

Desa

On our workshop in May in Bosnia on the theme of Reconciliation Desa, a Serb born in Bosnia and living now in Vukovar Croatia, helped us enormously and made a significant contribution.

Desa  came to the UK herself some time ago and has been through all our training. At first Desa did not say very much at all at workshops! She writes herself that she was blocked many times on workshops. However, it was the prayer for healing that seemed to make a difference to her and she suddenly found herself being able to thank God for Touch of Hope and to pray to God in her own words.

Fast forward to this year and I observe a very different Desa to when I first met her. She came into the last workshop of our basic training for the group of Primary school teachers and assisted in the running of the workshop. It was not an easy task for her to do this as the group was well formed already and the topic was challenging. But Desa was a STAR!! She won the group over and people commented on how Desa contributed to the workshop. Desa talked about her own experience of being on Touch of Hope. This sharing of experience of workshops encouraged members of the group to share themselves and not be afraid of talking about difficult subjects. She led exercises well and confidently and I could not believe it was the same person.

Desa is now very active in her own community in peace work and helps run activities. Touch of Hope has helped her to be empowered to lead and to challenge people. Desa is just one example of the many people Touch of Hope has helped.

From September 24th to October 1st a group of 20 people from Bosnia and Herzegovina will be visiting Nuneaton. A public meeting will be held on September 25th at 7.30pm at Nuneaton Methodist Church, Abbey Street, Nuneaton, CV11 5BX . I would be delighted if some people from Radford Road Church and other interested people could attend this meeting.

Revd Clive Fowle

Click on the link below to see poster giving details of the public meeting

25th September poster version 2 (2)

.

.

 

MANSE AFTERNOON TEA PARTY

James and Sarah kindly invited the whole of the congregation and other friends to call in at the Manse on July 7th between 3pm and 5pm to enjoy afternoon tea.  The weather was superb and the shaded Manse garden was as ideal setting for people to meet with church friends and to enjoy tea, scones, cakes and chatter.

Our hosts provided an excellent afternoon tea and although the event clashed with the England/ Sweden match in the World Cup the ardent supporters were able to see the match live in the sanctuary of the sitting room!

It was a happy occasion, made even more special when England scored two goals and won their match!

£125.00 was raised on the day and this amount was donated to the Good News Hospital in Mandritsara, Madagascar where Matt and Sarah Serratt and their family from Myton Church, Warwick, are part of the hospital team. Matt is an anaesthetist and works at the hospital as one of two surgeons whilst Sarah teaches English at the Good News School. Not only is medical advice and treatment offered at the hospital but the patients receive Good News of the Gospel which is shared in morning and evening services and in one to one conversations.

.

.

.

 

GIFT DAY

A Gift Day was held on Sunday June 24th 2018 to offset the cost of the recent roof repair. people were asked to give generously so that no debt is incurred.

Gifts were placed on a table in the Vestibule before Morning Worship and the amount donated was  £3145.00. This is a splendid result. Many thanks to all who gave so generously to the Gift Day. The money will be used to off-set the cost of the repair to the church roof.

After the service several people stayed to enjoy a jacket potato lunch together. The football fans were also able to watch the World Cup match on television!

 

 

.

.

KNIT AN ANGEL

Can you knit a Christmas angel?

Yes, we know Christmas has not yet come but we need lots and lots of knitted Christmas angels!

During Advent 2018 we plan to place the angels in telephone kiosks, public places, shops and even in bus shelters.

Each angel will have a “Take me Home” tag attached to it together with a card which will invite the finder to attend our Christmas services. The more angels we can distribute the better and this is a novel way of encouraging new people from our local community to visit our church.

Knitting patterns, kindly supplied by Jenny Clarke (of Knitted Bible Stories Exhibition fame), are available in the vestibule – please take one. They are also available by using the Contact Us page on this website. 

Please use white double knitting wool and 3mm needles to make an angel. If you have any white sparkly wool this makes fantastic angels.  It would be lovely to have a heavenly host of angels to spread around the town at Christmas time as our gift to the community!

STOP PRESS! Can you help to assemble the angels, card and tags on November 8th at 2.00pm in the Vestibule? Come and join the working party.

.

.