Sue

Praying for people living in Stoney End

Praying for people living in Stoney End

Prayer changes things, which is why we believe it is important to pray for everyone living in our community. As a church family at All Saints, Mattishall we will be praying for everyone living in Stoney End throughout the week commencing 27th May. We pray for God’s love to be evident in the lives of the people living on this road and for His comfort and peace to be with those who need it.  Also for hearts to be thankful to all that God provides in abundance. 

 

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Sue

Praying for people on Occupation Road, Mattishall

Praying for people on Occupation Road, Mattishall

Prayer changes things, which is why we believe it is important to pray for everyone living in our community. As a church family at All Saints, Mattishall we will be praying for everyone living in Occupation Road throughout the week commencing 20th May. We pray for God’s love to be evident in the lives of the people living on this road and for His comfort and peace to be with those who need it.  Also for hearts to be thankful to all that God provides in abundance. 

 

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Sue

Praying for people in Church Lane.

Praying for people in Church Lane.

Prayer changes things, which is why we believe it is important to pray for everyone living in our community. As a church family at All Saints, Mattishall we will be praying for everyone living in Church Lane throughout this week. We pray for God’s love to be evident in the lives of the people living on this road and for His comfort and peace to be with those who need it.  Also for hearts to be thankful to all that God provides in abundance. 

 

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Sue

Praying for people living in The Beeches and Ringers Close

Praying for people living in The Beeches and Ringers Close

Prayer changes things..  Which is why we believe it is important to pray for everyone living in our community. As a church family at All Saints, Mattishall we will be praying for everyone living on in The Beeches and Ringers Close throughout this week. We pray for God’s love to be evident in the lives of the people living on this road and for His comfort and peace to be with those who need it.  Also for hearts to be thankful to all that God provides in abundance. 

 

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Mel

Give a Lunch at Lent

Give a Lunch at Lent

Following the success of the Reverse Advent Calendar, I would like to propose a Lent appeal. 
Why not forgo a meal (or two) during Lent and use the fast to pray. In addition why not donate a lunch or another meal to The Foodbank by donating the ingredients to make a family meal?
For example: Lunch or dinner-  a jar of pasta sauce and a packet of dried pasta
                                                   a tinned meat pie and canned vegetables
                                                   a jar of curry sauce and a packet of rice

                      You could even add a pudding- a tin of fruit or rice pudding
                                                                       - a tinned sponge pudding  and a can/ carton of custard
                       Breakfast - a packet of cereal, a carton of long-life milk, a jar of marmalade or a carton of fruit juice.

                       Morning coffee/ afternoon tea - a packet of biscuits, a jar of coffee or a packet of teabags and a carton of long-life milk.


There are plenty of options - just consult the list of Foodbank foods at the back of your church and create a meal to give to a household which is struggling.

 

 

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Alan

St. Mary's, North Tuddenham to re-open from March 10th

St. Mary's, North Tuddenham to re-open from March 10th

Good news. St. Mary's is due to reopen from 10th March. Everyone on the benefice mailing list should have had an email from Mark giving more details.

 

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Sue

Praying for people on Old School Green, Mattishall

Praying for people on Old School Green, Mattishall

Dear praying friends,

Prayer cards have been delivered to residents living on Old School Green and we will be focusing on praying for the people and families living there in the coming week. 

Please pray for God to touch these lives by His Holy Spirit to bring a fresh understanding of who He is and how much He loves each one of them.  Pray for opportunities to present themselves to draw these dear people closer to God especially through this coming week and pray that new beginnings happen!

 

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Sally

APCMs are good for us!

APCMs are good for us!

March is the month when four of our six benefice churches will be holding Annual Parochial Church Meetings with the other two coming in the first week of April. I like a good meeting.

Whilst every parish has a statutory duty to hold the annual meeting of parishioners and the annual parochial church meeting respectively, I truly believe that we miss an opportunity if we do not attend nor see the potential that they offer. Each of our annual reports will guide us to where God has been present during the past year and help us to recognise how He has provided for us, how we have been supported, and help us to celebrate the commonality we share.

As part of the Diocesan Mission Strategy 2021 we are encouraged to think about Reimagining Church through the four work streams - Listen, Celebrate, Imagine and Empower. 

I want to ask you to read your annual reports prayerfully and honestly.  I would like to encourage you to read the annual reports for each of the churches in our benefice too and will be placing a single copy in each church.

For some of our smaller churches the APCM serve as a reminder of the lack of PCC members, officers and churchwardens and we are not alone because many rural churches are in a similar position.

I personally believe that now is the time to consider what we can do to support one another. Do we have a talent or time to offer outside of our own church? Let us take time to thank God for the things we do share.

Please read Acts 2:42-47. Verses 44-45 read ‘All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.’

We can very easily get hung up by thinking that having everything in common means losing the individual identity of each of our churches if we pool our resources so to speak. I don’t believe this to be so and suggest that we need to be bold and imagine the potential for lifting burdens and seeking to grow the gifts that we have been blessed with here in the MATV benefice.

I really do look forward to being present at all of the APCMs and hope to see you there too!

Sally

 

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Sue

Praying for people living on Dereham Road, Mattishall

Praying for people living on Dereham Road, Mattishall

Prayer changes things..  Which is why we believe it is important to pray for everyone living in our community. As a church family at All Saints, Mattishall we will be praying for everyone living on Dereham Road throughout this week. We pray for God’s love to be evident in the lives of the people living on this road and for His comfort and peace to be with those who need it.  Also for hearts to be thankful to all that God provides in abundance. 

 

 

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Alan

Church of England Christmas Advert

Church of England Christmas Advert

The Church of England has released a Christmas advert on YouTube inviting people to come to church this Christmas. See it here.

 

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Mel

Reverse Advent Calendar

Reverse Advent Calendar

Why not do something different this Advent?  Put aside a box and as you open each window in your Advent Calendar, place a grocery item in the box for the Foodbank. Or perhaps more realistically, please bring two or three items to church for the Foodbank on each Sunday of Advent. Either way you will be helping those in our area who may not be able to even afford the essentials this Christmas.
Each family who receives a voucher for the Foodbank in December also gets given a voucher for a small Christmas box.
The Foodbank suggest we donate Christmas food items on 2nd and 9th December, so that these boxes go out in time. Items such as Christmas cake, Christmas puddings, chocolates, biscuits, sweets, mince pies etc... would be appreciated. Then on 16th and 23rd December, please bring items from the normal Foodbank grocery list- see back of church or speak to Liz Chappell.
Let us be generous as a church family this Advent and bless those less fortunate than ourselves.
Christians are called to be counter- cultural so please join in the Reverse Advent Calendar. Thank you.

 

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Alan

Heating Installation update

Heating Installation update

Work is now underway in ASM and it should be completed in time for Christmas. As previously mentioned, the building will not be usable on weekdays, except for funerals, but will be available on Saturdays and Sundays, albeit with parts (the north aisle usually) being unavailable. Little Angels has had its first session over in the Church Rooms.

If you have any questions about the installation, please do speak to one of Sue, Ken, Barbara or Steve.

 

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Alan

Update on money given at the benefice Harvest Supper

Update on money given at the benefice Harvest Supper

The amount sent to  Barnabas Fund after the benefice Harvest Supper on 5th October was £129.39. We haven't specified how they are to use it, but it is how much it costs, for example, to feed a displaced family for 6 months in places like Syria or Myanmar (Burma).

 

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Mark

Andrea Woods to become our curate

Andrea Woods to become our curate

Dear friends,
I have some great news to pass on to you.

From July (well the very end of June) next year, our team here in the Benefice will be boosted by a Curate, or rather by Andrea Woods, who will become our Curate here. Currently, Andrea is Families and Children’s Worker with St. Andrew’s, Eaton and is an LLM (Reader), well known to many of the staff team in the Benefice already. Andrea is married to Tim, and they have two adult sons. You can find out more about them with this amazing video (https://vimeo.com/298664479). Please have a look.
Andrea is likely to be ordained on the 29th June 2019 and we will welcome her, Tim and family formally to the Benefice on the 30th June, when we will be having our annual Village Green service.

 

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Jackie

A great opportunity….

A great opportunity….

Paula & Derek Finlayson are known to many of us at ASM. As well as being lovely people, their story is remarkable and their passion and obedience in serving God and spreading the Gospel is amazing.
They are currently serving with YWAM and are undertaking training which
formalises their position as missionaries with that organisation... on boats! These are not luxury cruise liners by any stretch of the imagination!
Paula & Derek have sold all they have to fund their missionary work over the years. Their income is minimal and without further support they will struggle to maintain the missionary life to which God has called them. However, their faith is huge and have stepped out in this once again.
As a church, we review our mission giving year on year (at PCC) and will be praying hard about how to use our ‘tithe’ for 2019. The funds we have
(in essence 10% of our Total Voluntary Donations) are already committed for this 2018.
However, we know many of you will have formed relationships with Paula and Derek and already support them in prayer, so we felt it essential to open up the
opportunity to all, to support them directly in their missionary work.
I can provide you with more information if you would like it.
If you would like to support them, either with a regular or one-off amount, please speak (in confidence) to Barbara or myself.

 

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Mark

Giving what's right, not what's left

Giving what's right, not what's left

Mark's talk at the Mattishall 10.30 service on 14th October on the subject of "Give what's right, not what's left" is now available in the Resources session. Note that Mark is due to speak on this subject at Yaxham and North Tuddenham on 21st October and at East Tuddenham and Welborne on 4th November.

 

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Alan

Christians Against Poverty

Christians Against Poverty

Heather Nunn from Fountain of Life Church, Ashill has sent us this information (more details of the programme at https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0bmblny). Remember that if you miss it you will likely be able to watch it on iPlayer:

We have exciting news!  The BBC has made an hour long documentary on the work of Christians Against Poverty which is going to be shown on BBC2 this Friday 5th October at 9pm.

This will give you an opportunity to see just what it is that we are achieving via the our Mid Norfolk CAP Debt Centre and how we are helping people in community (although our Centre was not directly involved in this programme). 

As always, anyone needing our FREE help for an unmanageable debt situation should, in the first instance, phone 0800 328 0006.

 

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Alan

Details about All Saints, East Tuddenham building

Details about All Saints, East Tuddenham building

Details of the church building and something of its history are now available on the East Tuddenham page.

 

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Other News from around the benefice

Other News from around the benefice

On the 16th September, there was a wonderful rededication service at All Saints, Welborne to mark the completion of the work to fix the tower and to provide a toilet and refreshment facilities. This will open up more uses of the church. A big thanks is required to Dean, Linda and Richard, who gave many hours and considerable effort to bring the project to completion.

Yaxham is looking forward to having supplementary heating installed this autumn, which should be completed by December. Mattishall’s long journey to replace the failing wood burning stove has progressed one more step along the road to approval.

G.A.T.E has received £1507 thanks to Jackie Crip’s 10K run and Mark completed his sponsored walk around the Benefice. Please pass money on to Janet Clark for G.A.T.E and your PCC treasurer for Mark’s journey.

 

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Mark

A Time for Reflection

A Time for Reflection

Is it because “we look back” to summer, as the mnemonic for the change from British Summer Time goes, that autumn is a time for looking back? We have harvest – a time to look back at the year and give thanks for God’s provision. We have Remembrance Day, especially this year as we come up to the 100th anniversary of the end of WW1 on Sunday 11th November with services in each village. We have our annual Memorial Service on the 25th November. All these events combine the flavours of thanksgiving, commemoration and remembrance, in different measure.

Therefore we will be continuing the sermon series started in September called “Generous: Our God. Our Call” as we use the Harvest time to reflect on our response to God’s generosity. For the details of this series please check back to September’s Benefice News or the website.

On the 28th October, there will be just one service across the Benefice as Bishop Jonathan comes to licence Sally as Assistant Priest, at Yaxham at 10:30. This licencing will not change the character of what she does, but is an outward mark of Sally’s own response to the generous God who called her into ministry. Over the last few years Sally’s role as a Priest who is called from the local community and stays here has developed, and so this new designation of Assistant Priest, shared with other Locally Ordained Ministers across the Diocese, will recognise that new role.

 

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Mid-Norfolk Foodbank

Mid-Norfolk Foodbank

Liz Chappell, our local representative for the Foodbank writes.

With harvest starting in September, donations from churches and schools really boost our supplies and this time of year is a very important means of food requirement for the Foodbank.

The Mid Norfolk Foodbank is run from Dereham, with distribution centres also in Swaffham and Fakenham. Unfortunately, the necessity for food for those in real need is as great as ever, with over 2000 people in our local area receiving food parcels. The introduction of Universal Credit in Dereham this June has had the same impact here as around the country in increasing the demand for food. A quarter of our clients receiving food are those on low incomes unable to make ends meet and who have not got the reserves required to manage through the transition period.

We recently received a letter from someone in Dereham who received a food box. They said “I have to say what a great idea and conception it is for us to have Foodbanks, without them many people would go hungry through no issues of their own, just a bad situation or bad luck.

“I hope you never find yourself stuck without food any chance of getting any for over a week. Not everyone has family or friends that they can go to, so the Foodbank is that last life line for them.

“To those people who donate a little food, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Everyone one involved feel pride in the service you provide, free of charge. You have made a difference in my life and the kindness I have felt from the staff was overwhelming and made a shameful act (having to ask for free food) was made much easier and I walked away from there in Dereham not feeling shame but overwhelmed by kindness. You are true stars. Thankyou.”

Please continue to give generously. You can see what a difference it makes. If you would like to become a volunteer to help in this crucial work, either in our distribution centres or the warehouse please contact me or the Mid-Norfolk Foodbank online. Alternatively, see their website at https://midnorfolk.foodbank.org.uk/

 

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Jackie

ASM Communicates - Sept 2018

ASM Communicates - Sept 2018

ASM COMMUNICATES ….
September 2018

Heating

During the amazingly hot summer this year, the characteristic coolness of this ancient building was actually a blessing but as Autumn creeps in, our thoughts turn again to how chilly we might feel when we come into church! Well, our Boiler Team (Sue, Barbara, Ken & Steve) have been thinking about little else!  Here is an update from the team:
“We are finally seeing some progress!   The PCC met recently and it has been agreed to pursue one of the quotes received to install a new oil boiler, outside tank, convert two existing radiators and upgrade some pipework.  This will enable us to achieve an acceptable level of heat in the cold weather.  (18C degrees inside when outside temp at -1C degrees).

A Faculty Application has been submitted and we are awaiting the Diocesan Advisory Committee’s decision at their meeting on 20th Sept.  If the DAC gives approval there will then follow a consultation period (28 days) after which full approval can be granted.   Once this has happened we will be in a position to order materials and arrange a date for work to commence.  Please pray for approval as everything hinges on this for us to be able to proceed with the work. 

The work itself is likely to take approximately 3 weeks to complete.  This may cause some disruption to regular and one-off events between now and Christmas but we will do our utmost to keep disruption to a minimum.”

If you would like any more information, please speak to one of the team. They have worked so hard to get the project to this point and I would just like to say a huge thank you to them for all they have done.
We will keep you all updated as things happen.

As always, cost has been central to all of the discussions. We will share the detail once it is fully known We believe that, thanks to the money already generously donated by the church family to the boiler fund and the special projects fund which has been held in reserve for this time, the shortfall will be in the region of £10,000. However, once again ASM has been amazingly blessed….

Cynthia Wake Legacy:  On her passing earlier this year, Cynthia continued to bless the church massively by leaving a legacy to ASM of £20,000. It has been proposed that up to 50% of this should be put towards the boiler installation. Whilst Cynthia was never one to put her creature comforts first, we believe she would approve of  the  plan to finally make the church useable and comfortable throughout the year for outreach activities such as Little Angels. She was also very aware of how cold those of us of advancing years find it on a Sunday morning in mid-winter! The other 50% of the legacy will be held in a fund in her name to be spent on other projects, under the control of the PCC. However, first and foremost, we believe this should cover the shortfall on the boiler project and we are so very thankful for that.

We will be talking more about finances over the next few weeks, as our committed outgoings continue to exceed our income.

Prayer….

In July , we focussed on prayer with an emphasis on the value and compulsion for us to come together as a church to pray. We distributed a little survey to look at how we would be most willing and able to commit to this, so that it becomes ‘habit’ for us in the best possible way.

We had around 25 completed forms and we are very grateful to those of you who took the time to respond. The trends were fairly clear and the preferred options by some way were for a Sunday evening once a month and a Saturday morning, with light breakfast, again once a month. We are keen not to compromise the ladies & men’s breakfasts which are already established, so will be ensuring those can still continue. Please watch this space as we will be sharing details very soon, with a view to starting next month.

We have so much to be thankful for and so much still to do but it is essential that we listen to God to hear how He wants us to proceed so this will be central to our prayer time together.

Autumn activities
Between now and Christmas Day, we have no fewer than nine events which give the opportunity for reaching out into the community:
Friday 5th October - Harvest Supper
Sunday 7th October - Harvest Service 10am with bacon butties! As last year, invites will be sent to all organisations and businesses in the village.
Wednesday 31st October  5pm - Bright Party
Sunday 11th November - Remembrance Service
Saturday 24th November  - Christmas Fayre
Sunday 25th November - Memorial Service
Sunday 2nd December - Christmas Activities afternoon (before the Village Green tree-lighting)
Sunday 23rd December 6pm - Village Carol Service by candlelight
Monday 24th December 4pm - Christingle
11.10pm - Midnight Communion

Alongside, Little Angels and Drop-In continue to  run weekly, building relationships and serving in an amazing way.
Many opportunities to serve and extend a hand of friendship, showing the love of Jesus in the way we welcome and care. And lots of baking (and eating!) opportunities too! Please put the dates in your diaries and let the office know which ones you would like to be involved in, by baking a cake, in the arrangements and/or at the event. Many hands make light work and the blessing comes from the serving.

Thank you for all you do and all you are in this church.

 

With every blessing

Jackie

 

 

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Alan

Change in email updates

Change in email updates

We have made a change to the day of the week that weekly email upates are set up. Previously it was sent out each Monday, but an enhancement to the design of the site means we can choose the day we want. We have chosen Friday as it is just before the weekend, i.e. when most stuff benefitting from reminders happens.

 

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Dereham Fridge

Dereham Fridge

Dereham Community Fridge is hosted by Green Pastures Bookshop, 20 High Street Dereham, managed by Love Dereham and in partnership with Breckland District Council.

The fridge was set up to give businesses and individuals the opportunity to donate good quality food items that are past their ‘best by’ date, but within their ‘use by’ date, which would otherwise be thrown away. ANYONE is then able to visit the fridge and take something out that they can use. The primary aims are to reduce food waste and to give people access to good quality free food. There are times when the fridge is full and there are times when it is empty, the idea is to just come along and see if there is something you can use. Any food that passes its ‘use by’ date is then used for animal feed and compost.

For more details on how you can get involved please see the contact details and opening hours below.

 

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Mark

Harvest and stewardship

Harvest and stewardship

Come, ye thankful people, come,
Raise the song of harvest home!
All is safely gathered in,
Ere the winter storms begin;
God, our Maker, doth provide
For our wants to be supplied;
Come to God's own temple, come;
Raise the song of harvest home!

 This, one of the traditional hymns of harvest, was written in 1844 by Henry Alford, a Vicar in Buckinghamshire, expressing that sense of gratitude towards God’s generosity towards us that Harvest and autumn invoke and that we reflect through our Harvest services and suppers.

The bible teaches us that every moment we experience God’s generosity to us, and as those who have been awoken to recognise its source we are also called to mirror that generosity in our lives.

That is why this Harvest-time, across the Benefice, we will be thinking in a bit more depth about what this means for us, as our worship follows the series “Generous: Our God. Our Call”. To enable this to happen across the Benefice, this means different churches will be focused on different parts of the series at different times, rather than the same set of readings each week.

There are six themes we will be following:

1.1:
Giving God

Gen 1:1-5, 24-31

Ps 8:1-9

Acts 17:22-28

John 3:16-17

2.1:
Jubilee people

Isaiah 58:1-12

Ps 19

James 2:1-13

Luke 4:14-21

2:2
Grace-full

Deut  20:1-18

Ps 24:1-10

2 Cor 9:6-15

Luke 19:1-9

3:1
Resisting Gravity

Amos 5:6-15

Ps 49

1 Tim 6:17-19

Luke 12:13-21

3.2:
Reflecting God

1 Chr 29:10-16

Ps 98

2 Cor 8:1-7

Luke 14:1-24

3.3:
Right Giving

Malachi 3:1-12

Ps 30

2 Cor 8:8-15

Matt 6:1-4

Which across the benefice, looks like this: (Services in italics are not following the series Generosity: Our God, Our Call)

16 Sep:     East Tuddenham, Mattishall 09:00 & 10:30, North Tuddenham, Yaxham: 1.1 Giving God Welborne: Rededication Service

23 Sep:     Hockering: 3.3 Right Giving Mattishall 09:00 & 10:30, North Tuddenham: 2.2 Grace-full Welborne: 1.1 Giving God Yaxham: Sunday Special

30 Sep: East Tuddenham (Benefice Service): 2.1 Jubilee people

07 Oct: East Tuddenham, Welborne: 2.2: Grace-full Hockering: 1.1 Giving God Mattishall 09:00 & 10:30: Harvest Festival from 10:00am North Tuddenham, Yaxham: 3.2: Reflecting God

14 Oct: East Tuddenham, Welborne: 3.1 Resisting Gravity Hockering, Yaxham: 2.2 Grace-full Mattishall 09:00 & 10:30: 3.3 Right Giving North Tuddenham: Morning Prayer

21 Oct: East Tuddenham, Hockering, Welborne: 3.2 Reflecting God Mattishall 09:00 & 10:30: 3.1 Resisting Gravity North Tuddenham, Yaxham: 3.3 Right Giving

28 Oct: Yaxham (Benefice Service): Sally’s licensing as Assistant Priest

04 Nov: East Tuddenham, Welborne: 3.3 Right Giving Hockering, North Tuddenham, Yaxham: 3.1 Resisting Gravity Mattishall 09:00 & 10:30: 3.2 Reflecting God

This pattern means that by the 4th November, every congregation will have had an opportunity to hear every part of the series.

 

 

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Mark

Return of the Prodigal Vicar - Mark's Benefice News Article

Return of the Prodigal Vicar - Mark's Benefice News Article

It’s good to be back writing to you again having reached the end of my sabbatical. Fiona and I had a very refreshing time while I was “off” and it has recharged the spiritual batteries, but I am glad to be back in harness and look forward to us all discovering what God has got planned for us.

First, and most importantly, I want to thank all of you who have worked so hard in my absence to continue the ministry and presence of the churches in our villages. I have felt so privileged that I could step outside of daily ministry so completely for three months and know that things were continuing without me.

This is entirely down to you all, the staff team, office and churchwardens and particularly Sally and Jackie Clay, to whom I had delegated my day to day responsibility. I am so thankful that I share my ministry with them and with you all here.

As well as the privilege of being able to spend three months doing completely different things, I also found real enrichment in the people I met, the worship I attended, the study I started, and the time with Fiona, friends and family. So, before the memories fade, I want to give you a flavour of my three months “away” and what it means for me to come back with recharged batteries.

My sabbatical plan

I had planned my sabbatical with four elements.

The first two were concerned with the question “How we might use Luke chapter 15 to inform the way in which we live as church communities?” I had become increasingly convinced that Jesus interaction with tax collectors and ‘sinners’ and his threefold response in the parables of the Lost Sheep, Coin and Son(s) had something to teach us as 21st Century Churches.

So the first element was academic study under the supervision of Professor Rev’d Steve Walton, a biblical specialist on the writings of Luke (the gospel of Luke and the book of Acts). I wanted to test whether it was reasonable to argue that we can apply Jesus’ method and his teaching in this chapter to the church today and if so how.

The second element was going to visit churches in the UK and in the USA and talk to church leaders to see what they thought about the question and how their churches lived out a Luke 15 shaped ministry.

In particular I was going to spend some time visiting the Desert Vineyard Church based in Lancaster, California because of the ministry of David Parker, until last year their pastor.

The third element was to go on silent retreat for a week. I know some of you are sceptical about my ability to stay silent for a whole week, but I had done this before and knew how important it is.

And the fourth element was to spend time with Fiona, family and friends doing “normal” things, like going away for the weekend. With one day off a week, six Sundays off a year, and a growing family, and no life together before ministry, this was going to be a new thing for Fiona and I.

A summary of what I did when

April 23rd – 11th May

I started my academic study supervised by Steve and quickly discovered just how far behind I had fallen in my academic learning over the 24 years since I left theological college.

12th May – 24th May

Flight to Los Angeles, visits to various churches in LA and an extended time at Desert Vineyard Church, staying with some of the leadership and experiencing their church life.

24th May – 31st May

New York. I had abortive attempts to connect with Church Leaders there, but did attend a Harlem Gospel Church. Fiona and I spent a few days being tourists in New York (much recommended).

1st June – 22nd June

Travelling around the UK to visit churches and leaders combined with study when back at “home”.

23rd June – 24th June

Birthday weekend (in London)!

25th June – 10th July

More visits, more study and writing a paper for Steve, summarising where my study had go to.

11th July – 18th July

Silent retreat at the Cenacle retreat centre, Liverpool

19th July – 22nd July

Completing sabbatical tasks, supervision with Steve and “weekend away” with Fiona.

What I have brought back

Unfortunately, the 24 years of not really studying theology in any depth really showed and it meant that I could not complete the study in the way I wanted. Instead of a proper academic paper, Steve got 9000 words on “what I would have said, if I had not run out of time to do the study really needed”. Despite this I have felt that my deep sense that this chapter is not just another one in Luke’s gospel but has something to say to us today and should shape our life together is correct and a view shared by others.

  1. Jesus ministry in Luke 15 and elsewhere in Luke was with those regarded as outcasts by his culture. He showed that the Kingdom of God was at work in them in a way the other religious leaders could not believe. This should make us ask questions about our own expectations where God is at work in our villages and our own willingness to welcome the outcasts of today.
  2. For Jesus his ministry was about “seeking and saving the lost”. This was his main thing. Is it our main thing (it should be)? How can we stop it being shunted out by all the other things we have to do?
  3. Are we trying to get God to fit our agenda, or are we willing to make God’s agenda ours? How do we ensure that we are seeking God’s will first rather than pushing ahead with our own plans and hoping God will bless them?

I have come back with a strong sense that the Holy Spirit is at work in the people living in the Mattishall and Tudd Valley, and that the harvest is still plentiful (Luke 10:2). I met many inspirational leaders of all stripes and was challenged by their examples. I have come back having clearly met God again, rediscovered his love, renewed my calling to serve him here, and with a strong desire to see him fulfil the plans and purposes he has for the Good News in these villages.

“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10)

 

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Jackie

Mark Experiment - article on Network Norfolk

Mark Experiment - article on Network Norfolk

To see the details on Network Norfolk about the Mark Experiment which will be running in ASM later this year go to  here

 

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Alan

Three part series on prayer at ASM

Three part series on prayer at ASM

We are having a three part series on prayer at All Saints, Mattishall at both the 9 am and 10.30 am services. A recording of all three talks are now available in the Resources section of this website (and are currently featured at the bottom of the home page). We have also made available there the prayer survey. If you are a member of ASM and were not at ASM on Sunday 22nd July, it would be a great help to us if you would fill in and return the survey as detailed on the survey itself.

 

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Alan

The Return of the Prodigal Vicar

The Return of the Prodigal Vicar

As we prepare to get our rector back, please have a read of the letter from Mark and Fiona in the resources section at the bottom of the page. If you have signed up for email updates, it should reach you automatically by email.

 

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Alan

GDPR - final call!

GDPR - final call!

The General Data Protection Regulation 2018 is now in force in the UK. This means that, due to people’s religious beliefs causing the benefice’s handling of your personal data to be deemed ‘special category’ we have to be especially careful about how we handle your details. One result is that we need your specific prior permission on how to contact you. If we need to contact you other than at a church service we need your specific permission and we are asking, one last time, that those who have not yet done so to fill in the GDPR General Consent form available at the back of each of our churches (and return them to the church office) or, preferably, fill in the online form which you can get to at the top of the home page at the benefice website. Please note that the website automatic e-mail updates is entirely separate from this more general consent that we need from you.

 

This is our final call! Without your specific permission we cannot legally contact you and you may therefore miss out on important matters.

 

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Jackie

Dementia Friends

Dementia Friends

Dementia Friends

 

On a warm sunny evening 22 representatives from most of the congregations or churches in the Benefice gathered for a beautiful evening in All Saints Mattishall where we had gentle fun, fellowship and education about dementia led by the Rev Gill Wells from Shipdham.

 

An overwhelming majority of us knows of someone with dementia and we all have preconceptions about it.

 

Gill acknowledges she is not an expert but she led us through an evening where we learnt and appreciated the Five Key Messages of becoming dementia friends:

 

  1. Dementia is not a natural part of ageing.
  2. Dementia is caused by diseases of the brain.
  3. Dementia is not just about losing your memory – it can affect thinking, communications and doing everyday tasks.
  4. It is possible to live well with dementia.
  5. There’s more to a person than the dementia.

 

So now we can state that most of our congregations or churches have people within them who are dementia friends and they can impart their new found knowledge to others in the church.  We can do more to say we are dementia friendly churches and those new dementia friends (and anyone else interested) can see more information her ein a dementia-friendly-church-guide.

 

For those of you who missed the course and would like to join in, do let me know and I can see about another evening or I can put you in touch with Gill direct and you can join in one of her other courses. 

 

The course takes about 1 hour and we had food and drink after, naturally!  We can invite businesses in our area and anyone who we think may benefit from this short course.

 

Jackie Crisp

 

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Mark

Cynthia Wake

Cynthia Wake

On the 26th March, we had to say goodbye to Cynthia, whose sudden death has shocked and saddened us all. She passed away so quickly that I can’t quite believe that we will no longer be seeing her walk into a room with her bag of hassocks, or hear her sermons, or receive her wisdom.

My first encounter with Cynthia was at my interview in ASM in May 2012. She was at the “Readers” table and straight away asked me of my opinions of lay ministry and my experience of working with Readers. At the time I was struck by her quick mind and strong presence - and a little flustered. Only now as I look back can I also see the evidence of the many interviews she must have conducted as Director of Education (I hope I measured up!). In the six years since, I have been so grateful for those qualities and the way she used them here amongst us and to the glory of God.

Although the manner of her passing was so sudden, I am grateful that she didn’t suffer a long decline and that she was able to keep on serving and preaching right up to the end.

In Paul’s passionate letter to the Philippians, he speaks of his longing for a deeper relationship with Jesus and experience of the resurrection (3:10), combined with his determination to keep on with all his energy and drive in the service of his saviour (3:12-14).

He ends the section like this “But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Saviour from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body. Therefore, my brothers and sisters, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, dear friends!”

As we remember Cynthia, her service, her friendship and her place among us, Paul’s words apply to her and us too. Our citizenship is in heaven and through Jesus Christ our bodies will be transformed to be like Jesus’ resurrection body (c.f 1 Corinthians 15) – and our response to this should be, as Cynthia’s was, to stand firm in the Lord and serve him with all of our heart.

Thank you

I just want to say a big thank you to everyone who was present at and participated in the service for Cynthia. It was a great way of honouring her service to us. I am sorry that its timing meant some of you couldn’t be there but that was really out of our control.
Please continue to pray for Gerald and June Rootham and Noel Alexander as they act as her executors.

In memory of Cynthia

Any donations in Cynthia’s memory will go towards two things close to her heart: Money will be given to the Church Mission Society’s work in Latin America (this is where she served as a missionary) and money will be used to set up an award or other project in Cynthia’s memory at Hockering school. Please be generous. Money can be given to the church office or via Littleproud’s Funeral Services.

Mark

 

 

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Alan

Hebron to Hebron

Hebron to Hebron

Louise Henman (from our group of Little Angels mums and grandparents) works at Hebron House, which is a Christian-run rehabilitation centre in Norwich. Their website is www.hebrontrust.org.uk/

There is always a shortage of funds for women to be accepted at Hebron House and a couple of staff are attempting to raise funds to provide a place for someone for 6 months at Hebron House by travelling from Hebron House in Norwich to another Hebron House in Wales "taking no money with them". More details can be found here.

 

 

 

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Alan

In case you are wondering what all the fuss concerning GDPR is about

In case you are wondering what all the fuss concerning GDPR is about

The Bible Society has just been fined £100,000 for allowing a hacker to get to the details of thier supporters. Please see this link.

 

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Jackie

Thought for the month(s) - June and July 2018

Thought for the month(s) - June and July 2018

"The Rule of St. Benedict, a repository of wisdom for monastic living around 15 centuries old, has found new admirers in recent decades for its balance, common sense and good humour. It begins with the world 'Listen'. A wise person listens well, is attentive and not continuously distracted by other demands. Listening and restfulness seem closely connected. In the Letter of James in the New Testament there's an instruction, 'Let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger.' Put that into practice and I think we might learn a bit more about rest. Certainly, it's advice I need to heed." Thought for the Day - Wednesday 28th Septemeber 2016, The Rt. Revd. Graham James, Bishop of Norwich.

This week, Bishop Graham announced that he will be retiring early next year. Being a Radio 2 listener myself, I hadn't realised he is a regular contributor to Radio 4 - just one of so many aspects to his ministry. He is a great speaker, characterising 'balance, common sense and good humour' in abundance, along with great wisdom and faith. The legacy he will leave in this area and much wider is immense and he will be a very hard act to to follow. He and his wife are returning to Cornwall - a beautiful place to move into a season of rest, of listening and of restfulness, with fewer distractions from other demands. A retirement well earnt.

Please continue to pray for Mark during his sabbatical. He is using this time to listen and be attentive, without the continuous distractions and other demands on his time that parish ministry brings. We pray that, through this, he comes back truly rested.

With every blessing,

Jackie.

 

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Alan

GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation 2018)

GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation 2018)

The new General Data Protection Regulation 2018 (aka GDPR) is almost upon us. If you are a member or former member of one of our congregations or are in regular contact with us with regard to activities we undertake, then the benefice is entitled to hold relevant data on you as this is deemed a "legitimate activity" under GDPR. However, for us to be able to contact you, we need your specific consent for how to do that contacting. Note this is distinct from the benefice website's own "Email Updates" section, which is handled entirely in its own section on this website.

For us to be able to contact you when GDPR comes into force on 25th May 2018, we need you to tell us specifically which contact methods, i.e. which of:

 

  • Email
  • Phone
  • Post
  • Text (SMS)

we can use, if any. We will make some paper forms available in our churches, which you can use to let us know by filling one in for yourself, signing it and then returning it to the Church Office. However, it would help us greatly if you would kindly fill in an online form instead as we can import the online form data directly into our database without Teresa and Mandy having to copy everything from the paper form.

Since both paper forms and data from the online form could get forged, we will contact you afterwards to confirm that the details from the form (paper or online) are correct. To fill in an online form, please go to here. (PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS LINK WAS CHANGED ON 30TH MAY AS THE PREVIOUS ONE HAD STOPPED WORKING CORRECTLY.)

If you have any questions, please contact us at gdpr@matvchurch.uk.

 

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Sally

2018 Elections of lay persons to Diocesan Synod

2018 Elections of lay persons to Diocesan Synod

The 2018 Elections of lay persons to Diocesan Synod will take place between May 25th-June 19th this year. We are part of Dereham in Mitford which may elect 4 representatives.

If you would like to apply please collect a nomination form from the Church Office or Sally.

The nomination form needs to be sent to Rev Gill Wells at The Rectory, Church Close, Shipdham, IP25 7LX by 16th June, 2018 please.  

 

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Sally

Thy Kingdom Come

As a benefice we are participating in the prayer initiative “Thy Kingdom Come”, praying alongside Christians all over the world between Ascension Day and Pentecost.  A prayer booklet is available from your parish church along with a local focus prayer sheet as from Sunday, 6th May.

 

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Alan

Data Privacy Notice

Data Privacy Notice

As you may be aware a new regulation is coming into force on 25th May 2018 called the General Data Protection Regulation (aka GDPR). This gives individuals greater control over the way other people and organisations handle data about those individuals and is to be welcomed. In accordance with GDPR we have created a Data Privacy Notice (based on an example created by the Church of England) to explain how we handle data within our benefice and is available from the Resources section of this site. If you have any questions about  it, including what any part of it means, please do contact me via the benefice office or directly via email in the first instance. My details are in the Who's Who section of this site.

Alan Cossey

 

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Alan

Using this website

Using this website

Please do sign up to receive automatic email updates for benefice-related events shown on this website. To do this, please click the Email Updates link at the top of the screen (or the one at the bottom). The process is pretty clear, but if you have any problems do please refer to Videos on how to use Email Updates. On the video you will hear Alan's dulcet tones guiding you through what to do and showing you the entire process.

Note that if you currently receive email updates from the benefice office on Fridays please be aware that the last of these will be on Friday 18th May. Thereafter, you will need to use this website's Email Updates to receive notifications by email. We will continue to provide verbal notices at services and in Benefice News (or similar). An advantage with signing up for email updates, particularly if you sign up for the daily option, you will hear about the event soon after it is entered onto the website and will be reminded of the event shortly before it takes place.

 

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Jackie

All Saints & St Peter’s Mattishall Churches Conservation & Repair Fund

All Saints & St Peter’s Mattishall Churches Conservation & Repair Fund

Most of you will be familiar with the ancient churches in Mattishall - the unmissable large presence of All Saints in the heart of the village and the smaller, picturesque St Peter’s situated in the peaceful setting of Mattishall Burgh. These historical buildings are very much part of the fabric of village life here.

All Saints is used regularly for worship and quiet prayer, funerals, weddings and baptisms and once a week it is transformed to host the thriving weekly toddler group Little Angels/Bumps & Babies. Many visitors also come to enjoy the architecture and history as part of our rural heritage in Norfolk. St Peter’s can only really be used during the summer months as it is need of complete re -wiring.

Both Grade 1 listed, the churches have stood since the Middle Ages. To ensure they remain for future generations, they require careful maintenance and preservation.

The day-to-day running and maintenance of the buildings is financed almost exclusively by the two congregations of All Saints through voluntary giving. In addition, we pay a sizeable sum to the Diocese to provide us with a Vicar and towards other central service provision.

Whilst the sums involved are substantial, we are currently just about managing to cover them. However, we are aware of significant works required to both church buildings to prevent them falling into disrepair, to fully maintain and preserve them for current and future generations.

The Parochial Church Council, who are trustees responsible for the care of the churches, have set up a fund to be used exclusively for the maintenance and repair of the fabric of the two church buildings. This fund is called the All Saints & St Peter’s Mattishall Churches Conservation & Repair Fund.

We would love you to partner with us in meeting the cost of preserving such an important part of our village heritage. If you would like to contribute to this fund, please see the details below.

Please make cheques payable to Mattishall PCC and send to the Church Office, Dereham Road NR20 3QA (next to the Surgery)

Details for donations by BACS or Standing Order are: account name "Mattishall PCC", sort code 20-28-20 and account no.70616982

If you can Gift Aid your donation please contact the Treasurer c/o the Church Office.

If you would like to know more, please contact the Church Office at contact@matvchurch.uk or on 01362 858873

 

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Jackie

Thought for the month - February 2018

Another new year is upon us and I’m sure I am not the only one who has gone into 2018 with plans to change certain things. Perhaps, like me, you plan to lose a bit of weight and get fit, to de-clutter, to spend more time reading (especially my Bible!)…..

Well, one month in, I wonder how your plans are going. Mine aren’t going too well so far, but I’ll keep trying!

I wonder whether you have resolved to address any deeper issues. Perhaps there is someone who you have lost touch with and you are being prompted to re-connect. Maybe you are aware that, deep down, you are still angry or hurt about something from the past that is holding you back. Or are you carrying a fear, for your health, your finances, a relationship, your family?

Surely all of us carry a burden from the past, a worry in the present, or a fear of what lies ahead, in some form or another. When listening to the news around the world, it prompts me to wonder why I give my cluttered cupboards or my clothes feeling too tight a second thought! However, our worries, even if they appear small to others, are very real to us.

I heard this hymn (What a friend we have in Jesus) on Songs of Praise this afternoon and the words resonated strongly:

Oh, what peace we often forfeit
Oh, what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer

Sometimes, we are so busy carrying our worries and fears in our backpacks, looking down as we struggle under the weight or straight ahead intent on going in our own direction, that we forget to carry them to Jesus. Matthew 11:28 says “Come to me, all of you who are tired and have heavy loads. I will give you rest” and 1 Peter 5:7 “Give all your worries to Him, because He cares for you.”

Can we find a friend so faithful
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness
Take it to the Lord in prayer

 Perhaps that is the only resolution we need. Then all we need to do is listen for His answer.

With every blessing for 2018.

Jackie Clay

 

 

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Alan

New website

New website

We are currently moving to a new website for the Mattishall and Tud Valley Benefice. It is based on a system set up by Adrian Miller, rector of the Mulbarton group of parishes and their website can be seen at mulbchurch.org.uk Other churches using the same setup are Tas Valley (tasvalley.org) and St. Catherine's at Mile Cross in Norwich (stcatherinesmilecross.org.uk/).

As of early February 2018 I am concentrating on properly understanding events, special events and diary events as they get handled in slightly different ways and appear on email updates differently. I have also asked ASM members for ideas on what to put on the ASM page. I'll move onto other parishes when that has been sorted out.

 

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