27th May 2018
News from Lancashire.
My four day’s holiday in Lancashire gave me many things to learn and think about – here are two of them:
I passed a sign for “Salesian College”, an independent Catholic grammar school for boys aged from 11 to 18 years. Seeing this made me use the Internet to compare what the Methodists did in education, and my, no doubt biased, conclusion was that we do better for Primary and Secondary, Boys and Girls, UK and Foreign education than the Salesians do.
While walking along the Southport Pier my main feeling was of shame that Skegness had not preserved its Pier as they had. Next was my surprise as three youngish, attractive, charismatic people accosted Heather and me and offered us a chocolate. They explained that they were there to try to put a smile on every face. Chatting to them it emerged that they were from a Devon Christian Community, they had conducted a service at the R.C. Church the evening before which had been attended by Christians of all denominations and a good time had been had by them all. They refused my invitation for them to come to Skegness as they were on a tour which was heading for Scotland.
Have we any similar volunteers to do the same job here?
13th May 2018
As the Poster shows Christian Aid week starts this Sunday, and as usual the Church will be sending a donation on behalf of us all. However, if you would like to make an individual contribution, Neil has envelopes which you can put in the collection plate, or give to Sue at a later date.
“When Hurricane ‘Matthew’ tore through Haiti in 2016 Marcelin lost everything so he and his three daughters now “live” in a two metre square concrete ‘box’ with no windows and one single bed. As things are they will not survive another hurricane (which will come sometime) so Christian Aid needs our money to start re-building homes for Marcelin, his daughters and the hundreds of other families affected by the Haiti weather.”
(And their weather will get worse if we in the rich world do not do something major, and soon, to stop the ‘climate change’ we have helped to create.GMG.)
6th May 2018
Last Tuesday was May Day.
Traditional English May Day rites include crowning a May Queen and celebrations involving a maypole around which traditional dancers circle with ribbons. Historically Morris Dancing has been linked to May Day celebrations. Much of this tradition derives from the pagan Anglo-Saxon customs held during the month of May. This day has been a day of festivities throughout the centuries with towns and villages celebrating springtime fertility (of the soil, livestock, and people) and enjoying village fetes and community gatherings. Seeding had been completed by this date and it was convenient to give farm labourers a day off. The spring bank holiday on the first Monday in May was created in 1978; May Day itself – May 1 – is not a public holiday in England. In February 2011, the UK Parliament was reported to be considering scrapping the bank holiday associated with May Day, replacing it with a bank holiday in October, possibly coinciding with Trafalgar Day (celebrated on October 21), to create a "United Kingdom Day". May Day was abolished and its celebration banned by Puritan parliaments but reinstated with the restoration of Charles II in 1660.
(How many of us danced round a Maypole this year? GMG.)
29th April 2018
St George’s Day
Last Monday was St George’s Day, the Patron Saint of England, but who was he?
According to legend, St George was a Roman soldier born in what is now modern-day Turkey in around 280AD. Very little is known about his early life but it is believed he was born to a wealthy Christian noble family. When he grew up he became a soldier and joined the retinue of Emperor Diocletian. In 303 Diocletian, as part of a crackdown on the growing influence of the Christian community, ordered that all Christian soldiers in the army should be expelled and all Roman soldiers be forced to make the traditional pagan sacrifice. St George refused and denounced the edict in front of his fellow soldiers, declaring he was a Christian. Diocletian initially tried to convert him with offers of wealth and land but when he refused he was beheaded on 23 April 303. The myth of St George slaying a dragon originally appeared in stories told by the medieval Eastern Orthodox Church, stories which were brought back to Europe by the Crusaders in the 10th and 11th centuries.
A personal comment. In England we celebrate St Andrew’s Day with the Scots, we celebrate St David’s Day with the Welsh and we celebrate St Patrick’s Day with the Irish – but we seem to do little to celebrate St George’s Day, though the Country (led by Mablethorpe!) seems to be starting to take notice. GMG.
22nd April 2018
According to our “Plan” today is the “4th Sunday of Easter” but to many people all over the World it is :-
Earth Day seeks to highlight and promote efforts dedicated to the protection of the environment. In this century, we face many environmental crises, including global warming, deforestation, endangered wildlife, shortage of potable water and widespread pollution, all of which negatively affect our planet’s resources and can have adverse effects on human lives and the lives of many animal and vegetable species.
This day in 1970 marked the creation of the United States of America Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the ‘Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts’.
Today Earth Day is celebrated by billions of people around the world and is observed in 190 countries. Throughout the world Earth Day celebrations use educational programmes to inform people of ways that can help protect the environment and its natural resources. It is observed annually on this day and is celebrated as International Earth Day.
Two relevant quotations:
“In the past 50 years humans have consumed more resources than in all previous history”.
“We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children”.
15th April 2018
Martin Luther King.
The ‘Media’ commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King made me re-read some of his work. In 1967 he wrote :
“The futility of violence in the struggle for justice has been tragically etched in all recent riots. There is something painfully sad about a riot. One sees screaming youngsters and angry adults fighting hopelessly and aimlessly against impossible odds.
Deep down within them you perceive a desire for self-destruction, a suicidal longing. Occasionally the rioters contend that their riots represented effective civil rights action. Nowhere have riots won concrete improvements as have organized protest demonstrations. Humanity is waiting for something other than blind imitation of the past.”
King was writing about Negro (his word) riots in the USA. Fifty years later I cannot help thinking about the Gaza / Israel border.
8th April 2018
Mrs J. Hopps has asked me to include this “Thank You”.
“I would like to thank you all for your continued support in collecting used stamps for Parkinson’s UK. I have just sent a parcel weighing 2.5lbs. Please continue to save your stamps, the container is at the back of the church. Again many thanks”.
And ; ‘Thank You’ for the contributions to enable us to fill two boxes for family refugees in Syria - see notice board in Church porch.
Also : ‘Thank You’ from Wainfleet School for the donation we made to purchase bibles for the school - again see notice board in Church porch.
1st April 2018
Christ the Lord is Risen Today.
In England we have ‘Eggs’, in the USA they have ‘Bunnies’, but not in Australia where the rabbit is serious pest. The celebration I would like to see is the one in Italy.
In Florence, locals celebrate a 350-year-old Easter tradition known as "explosion of the cart." An ornate cart packed with fireworks is led through the streets of the city by people in colourful 15th century costumes before stopping outside the Duomo (Cathedral); the Archbishop of Florence, at the High Altar, then lights a fuse during Easter mass which slides down a stretched wire leading outside to the cart where it sparks a lively fireworks display. The meaning behind the custom dates back to the First Crusade, and is meant to ensure a good harvest.
25th March 2018
The Food Bank.
I have received a further update from Mo :
“I just want to give you an update on the food bank, at the moment we are very busy. In February we supplied 156 food parcels. So far in March the total is 94, which covers 121 people. We are in need of just about everything. Tinned potatoes, veg, rice pudding, fruit, biscuits, dried pasta, pasta sachets, long life milk, pasta sauce, instant mash, tea bags and tinned meat.
Everyone is really generous with donations and we are constantly talking to people who are so grateful for their food parcel, so on their behalf thank you.” Mo.
Thoughts on re-reading Sir Kenneth Clark’s “Civilisation”.
There can be no thought without ‘words’. Luther translated the Bible into German and gave people the chance to read Holy Writ and to think about its message. The invention of printing made it possible for books to be accessible to many. The Bible was translated into French by Calvin and English by Tyndale and Coverdale, essential steps in the development of the Western Mind. They might not have developed ‘Civilisation’ because they also led to the growth of ‘Nationalism’, and all great steps in the development of civilisation have come about during periods of ‘Internationalism’.
18th March 2018
I have been asked by Chris to say, on her behalf, a sincere “Thank You” to all of you who helped her to celebrate her birthday last Sunday.
This week’s “Neilism” takes the form of an imaginary
Our church was saddened to learn this week of the death of one of our most valued members, Someone Else. Someone’s passing creates a vacancy that will be difficult to fill. Else has been with us for many years and for every one of those years, Someone did far more than a normal person’s share of work. Whenever there was a job to do or meeting to attend, one name was on everyone’s list, “Let Someone Else do it.” Whenever leadership was mentioned, this wonderful person was looked to for inspiration as well as results, “Someone Else can work with that group.” It was common knowledge that Someone Else was among the most liberal givers in the church. Whenever there was a financial need, everyone just assumed Someone Else would make up the difference. Someone Else was a wonderful person, sometimes appearing superhuman. If the truth were known, everybody expected too much of Someone Else. Now Someone Else is gone! We wonder what we are going to do. Someone Else left a wonderful example to follow, but who is going to follow it? Who is going to do the things Someone Else did? When you are asked to help this year, remember—we can’t depend on Someone Else anymore.
11th March 2018
By St Anselm, Bishop of Canterbury (1033-1109).
For Mothering Sunday.
Jesus, as a mother you gather your people to you; you are gentle with us like a mother with her children.
In your love and tenderness, remake us.
Often you wept over our sins and our pride; tenderly you draw us from hatred and judgement.
In your love and tenderness, remake us.
You comfort us in sorrow and bind up our wounds; in sickness you nurse us and with pure milk you feed us.
In your love and tenderness, remake us.
Jesus, by your dying we are born to new life; by your anguish and labour we come forth in joy.
In your love and tenderness, remake us.
Despair turns to hope through your sweet goodness; through your gentleness we find comfort in fear.
In your love and tenderness, remake us.
Your warmth gives life to the dead; your touch makes sinners righteous.
In your love and tenderness, remake us.
In your compassion bring grace and forgiveness; for the beauty of heaven may your love prepare us.
In your love, remake us.
4th March 2018
Mo gives me the following update on the ‘Foodbank’ :
In January 206 referrals for food parcels came to the ‘foodbank’ 344 people were helped by being given 1032 days’ worth of food in one month. This would cost around £2,000 which would be very difficult to find without the donations of food.
“Thank You” to everyone on behalf of the ‘foodbank’ and the people in need that receive the food. Without your help this would not be possible.
Food Parcel referrals are just the tip of the ice-berg, there is always a reason that people can’t buy food. Sometimes it’s debt and the pressure from those to whom they owe money. Sometimes it’s the loss of a job, or the changes in the Benefits System. Or it may be simply having to pay the heating bill.
Items always needed include :-
Long-life Milk, Tinned vegetables, Potatoes, Rice pudding, Tinned fruit, Cereals, Biscuits, Teabags, Dried pasta, Pasta sauce and Tinned meat - of any variety.
25th February 2018
Women’s World Day of Prayer.
The service this year is at 2.00pm at Algitha Road Methodist Church and is prepared by the Women of Suriname.
“ All God’s Creation is Very Good ! ”
Suriname, which was known as Dutch Guiana, is a small, beautiful, tropical country on the Caribbean coast of South America with impressive landscape, flowers and animals. Its history contains many colonial evils, including terrible slavery.
In this service the women of Suriname urge the people of the 170 countries who will use their service to cherish God’s exquisite gift of Creation and to commit to caring for God’s world so that it can be passed on to future generations in an un-spoilt state.
There are many national parks in Suriname. In all, 16% of the country's land area is national parks and lakes, according to the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre. The Central Nature Reserve has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its unspoiled forests and biodiversity.
18th February 2018
“Safe Families for Children.”
Bruce Thompson has asked for an edited version of the Document shown on the Foyer Notice Board to be included in the Newsletter.
“Safe families for Children” is a Christian charity funded by the Local Authority and working with volunteers from local churches to support families having a hard time. If you can give an hour or so every week or two you may be able to help support a family and to help prevent children being taken into care. Over two years working with a handful of churches, we have been able to reduce the flow of children going into care by around 10% per year. This means that families are kept together; children are kept safe; adults/parents experience increased self-worth and self-esteem, and are given the skills to get themselves through the crisis.
There are three ways to volunteer.
1. Resources Friend – provide resource support for a family.
2. Family Friend – provide some kind of support for a family or child to help them at a difficult time.
3. Host Family – if you have a spare bed/room then you might be able to provide short 1 or 2 night respite care for a child.
Obviously all our volunteers are DBS checked and complete a simple process with a training day. The charity needs local churches to get involved to make a difference in the community they serve. We need your support in the Skegness & Louth areas. If you would like to know more then please contact Dale Newman, Community Volunteer Manager for Greater Lincolnshire on 07341 560663.
11th February 2018
Community Food Bank
The ‘Storehouse’ tell me that they need tinned fruit, biscuits, instant mash, uht milk, rice pudding, baked beans, dried pasta, jars of pasta sauce, tinned potatoes, tinned vegetables, cereals, tinned meatballs, pasta sachets and tea bags. It seems to me that the Algitha Road enthusiasm for ‘giving’ has decreased as the Storehouse ‘need’ has increased.
Please prove me wrong.
I have been asked to let you know that Afternoon Tea, or Coffee, with Cake is served from 1.00pm to 3.00pm at the “Storehouse” every Tuesday to anyone over 50 years old for just £1.50 with your T.E.D. Membership Card. New T.E.D. Members are always welcome. The person who asked me to tell you this assured me that the company, the tea / coffee and the cakes were excellent. For more information you could ring Kathryn Locke on 07495 008731.
4th February 2018
Louth Textile Group.
I have been asked to publicise the following :
“Please could you help? Have you any spare :
*cups & saucers. *tumblers. *wine glasses. *fabrics.
*threads. *beads. *wool. *textiles.
All for a good cause – Louth Textile Group and Grainthorpe Church Art Exhibition.
Please bring them to Louth Methodist Church for Julia by 11th August 2018, and I will arrange for them to be collected. Many thanks. Judy Purves. L. T. G.”
Two quotations from the “Whetstone Baptist Church Magazine”,
1.Birthdays are good for you. The more you have the longer you live. 2.You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person.
28th January 2018
There is no single reason why someone can end up without a home. Personal circumstances and wider factors play their part.
The most common reasons people give for losing their accommodation are that friends or relatives are no longer able to provide support or because a personal relationship has broken. However, there are often a wide number of factors at play. Individuals can arrive at the point of homelessness after a long chain of other life events. Some personal factors and experiences can make people more vulnerable to homelessness: these include poor physical health, mental health problems, alcohol and drugs issues, bereavement, unfortunate experiences of the care and the criminal justice systems. Structural factors can include poverty, inequality, housing supply and affordability, unemployment, welfare and income policies. Structural and individual factors are often interrelated; individual issues can arise from structural disadvantages such as poverty or lack of education. While structural factors can be influenced by personal problems with physical or mental health.
21st January 2018
A Quotation from James Gray’s lecture to students at the “Colleges of the Bible” in Australia, New Zealand and Kentucky.
“In the New Testament the word ‘church’ is used in only two ways: in the singular, as meaning the one Church of Christ, which is His Body, with “one Lord, one faith, one baptism”, a unity that transcends all distinctions; and in the plural, as meaning the local congregations of that one Church, as the ‘church in Corinth’, or the ‘church in Philippi’, or the ‘church in Jerusalem’. The idea of “Churches” as denominations at variance with each other is not only absent, but utterly remote, from the New Testament.
14th January 2018
From the 18th to the 25th we celebrate the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. The eight services are as follows :
Day 1 - 18th January – Thursday – St. Matthews – Time 9am.
Day 2 - 19th January – Friday – Methodist Church – Time 10.30am
Day 3 - 20th January – Saturday – Baptist Church – Time 10.30am
Day 4 - 21st January – Sunday– in own churches – Time 10.30am
Day 5 - 22nd January – Monday – Salvation Army – Time 10.00am
Day 6 - 23rd January – Tuesday – The Storehouse – Time 8.30am
Day 7 - 24th Jan – Wednesday – Ch. of The Sacred Heart – 10.30am
Day 8 - 25th January – Thursday - ??
The times shown may be subject to change.
We ( I ) do tend to be “Algitha Road” people but it would be good if we could support some of these services, not just our own.
Psalm 34:3. Proclaim with me the Lord’s greatness; let us praisehis name together.
Psalm 5 :14. We had intimate talks with each other and worshipped together.
Hebrews 10:25. Let us not give up the habit of meeting together instead let us encourage one another.
7th January 2018
The Covenant Service.
Methodists hold an annual Covenant Service – a celebration of all that God has done and an affirmation that we give our lives and choices to God. It is an invitation for people to renew their covenant relationship with God. Most churches hold the service at the beginning of the New Year, but some hold them in September at the start of the Methodist Year.
The Covenant Service goes back to John Wesley’s time. He wanted a form of worship which would help people open themselves to God more fully. In 1755 Wesley created such a service, using material from the writings of the seventeenth-century puritan divines, Joseph and Richard Alleine. Over succeeding generations the Methodist Church has made changes to the service so that it continues to be relevant to the congregations using it.
Both the Covenant Prayer and Service are regarded as jewels of Methodism and one of the most distinctive contributions of Methodism to the liturgy of the Church in general. Other churches are now discovering it and making use of it in their worshipping life.