EMURCE-LETTER 266 - 12th April 2018

E-LETTER NO: 266 – 12th APRIL 2018


Each year Children’s and Youth nationally have a theme.  This year it is Pilgrimage, and those young people who went to Youth Assembly will know that the theme was ‘Pilgrimage, are we there yet?’  Those of you who were at Synod in March will remember that the young people explored Pilgrimage and Labyrinths.  Over Easter BBC2 has shown a series of 3 programmes called ‘The Road to Santiago’.  A group of ‘celebrities’ travelled on the Camino de Santiago, I recommend watching it on iPlayer if you missed it, it is a pilgrimage in northern Spain completed by many 1000s of people each year. I know that there are some of you in this Synod who have travelled this pilgrimage as well as others in the UK, and worldwide.

A pilgrimage is a journey with a purpose, the pilgrim has many reasons for going on a pilgrimage, be that to find the answer to something or get closer to God.

In keeping with this theme the young people have asked that we have our own pilgrimage this summer, so in August (date to be announced) we will be having a ‘Pilgrimage to Skegness’, in the sense that we will all travel to Skegness, either by train, car, bike or walk to arrive at a certain time where we will gather and share a picnic, worship and games together as well as exploring Skegness.

There will be a ‘pack’ with things to do, think of and pray for on the journey. It is still at the planning stage but I do hope that you will join in.  Details will be sent out by the end of April.

Do explore pilgrimage in your churches, the Pilots worship pack this year has Pilgrimage as its theme and was sent out to all churches in March.  If you have not had a copy, ask your church secretary or contact Children’s and Youth Office at Church House.

I look forward to seeing many of you in Skegness in August.

God bless,   Jane

  • We regretfully inform you of the death of Revd Eileen Mary Wiles, who died on Monday 2nd April. Eileen served at John Knox, Stepney 1949-59; Battersea Rise 1959-62, Trinity, Streatham 1959-62; St Peter's Tooting 1959-61; St Cuthbert's, West Norwood 1961-66; St John's, Forest Hill 1962-66; Upper Norwood 1962-66; South East London Group 1966-74; Harlow Group 1974-83; Ongar 1981-88.
  • It is with sadness that we inform you of the death of Revd Eric McDonald, who died, aged 92, on Saturday 7th April. Eric was a retired minister, living in Grantham. His ministries were: Leicestershire District, 1981; St Peter’s Hill, Grantham, 1984-96. The Thanksgiving Service will be held on Tuesday 8th May, 12.30pm at ChristChurch, Finken Street, Grantham (preceded by private Committal).

MARLPOOL URC THEATRE COMPANY – presents ‘Saints Alive! and songs of New Beginnings’ in the Community Hall, Chapel Street, Marlpool from 17th – 19th May 2018 at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £6 each and are available from the box office by calling: 01332 986082  or online at: www.ticketsource.co.uk/murctc with no booking fee. This event is in partnership with Marlpool URC Flower Festival which can be visited from 6pm on performance nights.


WISBECH URC - is celebrating 200 years at Castle Square this year.  There will be a celebration service on Saturday, 28th April, at 3pm, led by Alan Yates, Moderator of the General Assembly.  There will also be an exhibition of some of the historical past of the church.  Anyone interested is invited to attend.

ARTS BREAKOUT - Friday 20 April to Saturday 28 April at ChristChurch LEP on Finkin Street Grantham. Nine days of multi-media arts-related events, with a range of topics, activities and performances. It begins on Friday 20 April at 7.00pm with Pam Rhodes from BBC’s Songs of Praise telling Stories behind our Favourite Hymns. All events will be free and all are very welcome.


THE DALES URC - Thank you to everyone who supported our Easter coffee morning for Dementia Admiral Nurses. This should have been held beginning of March, but was cancelled due to snow. The sum raised has totalled £720. 

You are invited to attend our “Spring Fair” on Saturday 12th May at the Dales 2-15pm - 4pm. 

To all those of you, who have attended the Pollyanna Pickering talks at the Dales, sad news, Pollyanna Pickering has died after a short illness. The Dales have been so pleased to receive Pollyanna & Anna Louise, they have helped us raise a lot of money for various projects. We have enjoyed being part of the means to raise awareness of endangered species, which was the Love of Pollyanna. Our Brownie's helped raise funds for Polly Bear. We hope to carry on raising money for the Pollyanna Wild Life Foundation.

CHURCHES TOGETHER IN BULWELL - invite you to a Coffee Morning hosted by Bulwell URC, on Saturday April 21st from 10.30am. There will be books, CDs, DVDs, bric-a-brac, cakes and refreshments. 11am – Local Councillors Surgery. Supporting Churches Together in Bulwell. Come along and bag a bargain!

TWO CHRISTIAN AID EVENTS – Hosted by Bulwell URC on Saturday May 12th.

10.30am – Spring Fair, various stalls - Fairtrade, bric-a-brac, books, DVDs, home-made cakes

7.00pm – Nottingham Ukulele Orchestra singalong concert raising funds for Christian Aid.     

A great night out! Tickets £3 (or can pay on the door) Contact Joy Rice:  riced@hotmail.co.uk

Tea/coffee/juice included, home-made cakes to buy.


The Historic Religious Buildings Alliance is a group within the Heritage Alliance. We bring together those working for a secure future for historic religious buildings.                                                                                                    Our e-newsletter is free and is sent once a month and contains up-to-date news for people like you – packed with important and useful information to keep you informed about the future of historic religious buildings. You can sign up at:  www.hrballiance.org.uk . In the April edition there is an amazing photo record of 100 churches in Northamptonshire, which you may find interesting: http://www.northamptonshiresurprise.com/year-of-the-churches/


City Hall, Leicester – 23rd May 2018

You are invited to a special one day event on maintaining faith buildings. The day will include a range of talks and workshops from leading specialists on identifying issues with buildings and providing solutions for managing common challenges. Advice will be provided on saving money through better management, as well as talks on grant funding from various sources. There will be the opportunity to meet specialists from bodies such as Historic England and the Heritage Lottery Fund, while there will be a session at the end of the day for asking questions about particular issues that are pertinent to you. The event has been funded by Historic England, Leicester City Council, Leicestershire County Council and the Diocese of Leicester. Entry is free and lunch/refreshments will be provided. Please book places through the link below: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/faith-in-maintenance-leicester-tickets-44591935680


A study day looking at the rule of St. Benedict. All Welcome! On Saturday 14th July 2018 from 10.30am - 3pm (bring a packed lunch) at the Synod Meeting Room, Nottingham, NG5 3AA. Led by Revd Dr Deborah Baird. Booking is essential, to book contact Hannah Holmes:

Tel: 0115 9609241


Join us for Bible Study, discussion and fellowship. Led by Revd Dr Deborah Baird on Saturday 23rd June 2018, 10.30am - 2.30pm at the Synod Meeting Room, Nottingham, NG5 3AA (Please bring your own lunch) To book contact Hannah Holmes: trainingpa@urc5.org.uk  Tel: 0115 9609241


Monday, May 7th - From Shame to Glory, Led by Rebecca Winfrey, former doctor and now associate priest in the Castor benefice.

In our changing 21st century culture, shame – an inner sense of unworthiness – has often become a more acute problem than guilt when we think about how we fall short.  In looking into the loving face of our Lord, we can find affirmation and acceptance that moves us from shame to glory, which is our destiny.  In this Quiet Day we’ll be looking at how this transformation happened in the life of Moses and whether we can move a little way forward in participating in it too.

Monday, June 4th - The Welcoming Christ, Led by Jackie Thackray

The focus on this Quiet Day will be on Launde’s iconic statue of ‘The Welcoming Christ’.  During the day there will be reflections on The Welcoming Christ, William Homan Hunt’s painting of The Light of the World and Siegar Koder’s All Are Welcome. There will also be an optional creative Bible journaling workshop.

Monday, July 2nd - Mary of the Gospels: Mary as Mother; Mary as disciple, Led by Chris Oxley

This Quiet Day will give us space to reflect on and respond in prayer to some of the key moments in the Gospels where Mary, the Mother of Jesus is involved.  Some of these correspond with the Mysteries of the Rosary.  There will be plenty of time for silence!

Monday, August 6th - Preserving time, Led by Emily Sharman

Come and welcome God into our everyday joys and sorrows, with the reflective day focusing on how we experience time.  We hope to savour the sunny moments in life which many rush over, and preserve them for the winter to come.  This attentiveness to our time will reveal God at work in the little things of creation and help us be proactive in our memory making.

Monday, September 3rd - Reading Seamus Heaney in Exile, Led by Lee Francis-Dehqani

Lee Francis-Dehqani considers some of the poetry of the late Seamus Heaney.  He will drawn out themes of Exile and Identity that have informed his own spiritual pilgrimage, including Death and Loss, Sectarianism and Violence, Belief and Pilgrimage.  Those who know Heaney’s poetry and those new to it are all welcome.

For more information or to book, please contact the General Office on 01572 717254; email info@launde.org.uk or visit www.laundeabbey.org.uk



‘Aurora Children’ is a children's ministry training course designed for those involved in Christian children's work and is made up of three modules:

• Children's Ministry and the Children's Leader;

• Understanding Children and Children's Ministry Practice;

• Managing the Ministry.

It is ideal for anyone who can commit to a number of training sessions over 8 months and who wants to develop their practice, gain new skills and grow in confidence.

Running from September to May each year, the Derbyshire Course is facilitated by Valley CIDS. The teaching schedule includes three Saturdays (two of which take place at Cliff College) and a monthly Tuesday evening at Holmebrook Family Centre in Chesterfield. Next Course starts 18th September 2018

Students complete a portfolio of learning to gain the Aurora Certificate in Children's Ministry, and may also work towards the Cliff College Certificate or a Diploma in Children's Ministry by completing a number of written assignments.

Some of the subjects covered will include

- Children today and their context. Children’s spirituality and formation.

- Gifts and Skills of a Children’s Leader.

- Child Development, Faith development, Learning styles

- Practical approaches to Children’s ministry

- Collective Worship/assemblies, All age worship, Messy Church

- Program planning, Resources, aims, objectives and involving children,

- Making teams work, Recruitment, supervision and training

- Schools Work: Making connections, building relationships,

- Safeguarding and other policies

Cost: £250 per student.

For more details, visit www.valleycids.co.uk or www.auroratraining.org.uk/derby

To book a place or register an interest, e-mail auroravalleycids.co.uk


COMING SOON this Summer!!!!

Pilgrimage to Skegness, watch out for further details.



  • Saturday 21st April - 10am – 2pm at Stamford URC, Star Lane, Stamford, Lincolnshire, PE9 1PH

To book please contact Hannah Holmes at the Synod Office: trainingpa@urc5.org.uk Tel: 0115 9609241


Please send any comments or feedback on this e-letter to: admin@urc5.org.uk
The URC East Midlands Synod, 1 Edwards Lane, Sherwood, Nottingham, NG5 3AA.
Email address for E-Letter Editor: trainingpa@urc5.org.uk Copy Date for Next E-Letter: 23.04.2018

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