Leprosy Mission Service

Leprosy Mission are an international Christian development organisation that diagnoses, treats and offers specialist care, including reconstructive surgery, to leprosy patients. Their aim is to transform and empower the lives of people affected by leprosy.

Leprosy is a disease of poverty and as well as providing healthcare, we offer rehabilitation, education, vocational training, small business loans, housing and fresh water supplies and sanitation to tens of thousands of people each year. They provide a springboard to restored health, self-sufficiency and renewed hope. Their services are provided regardless of religion or ethnicity, promoting equality and social justice.

On Sunday 25th June our morning service will be led by Mr Nick Calland, the regional Manager for Leprosy Mission.

From the Manse

Dear Friends

When I sat down to write this two topics came to mind. The first was the theme of Pentecost as this year it falls in June. the second possibility was a piece on the forthcoming General Election. On further reflection I realised there was a timing problem with both these themes. the article on Pentecost would have been almost out of date by the time you read this and the same can be said about the general election.

I then began to think about the consequences of the election results. If the responses to last year’s referendum are anything to go by then there may be two sorts of people living in this country following the election, those who are delighted by the result and those who are horrified by it! We as a nation will then have to work out how to live with the consequences of the voting.

John Wesley once wrote in his diary, “I met those of our society who had votes in the ensuing election, and advise them:-  1. To vote, without fee or reward, for the person they judged most worthy, 2. To speak no evil of the person they voted against, and 3. To take care their spirits were not sharpened against those who voted on the other side.” The first comment is not very relevant in this day and age and the second is an interesting reminder. It is the third comment that is most challenging in that it is very easy to complain bitterly about those who see life differently to us, especially if we think that those on the other side are wrong.

This takes me back to Pentecost and the Holy Spirit who Jesus describes as being our helper. In chapter 14 of John’s gospel Jesus says, “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, who will stay with you forever. He is the Spirit, who reveals the truth about God.” The Holy Spirit comes to help us in our day to day lives. So as we come to terms with the election results or for that matter as we deal with any of the major challenges that we face in life we need to remember that we are not on our own. We have a helper given to us by God to guide us through life’s challenges. All we have to do is ask for help.

God bless

Chris Pritchard

 

Christian Aid Week

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It’s better to die in a refugee camp than to die in a war. To risk your children’s lives in a plastic dinghy. And to leave everything you know behind.

When the alternative is terror, bombs and bullets, almost anything is better.

This is the terrible choice facing tens of millions of people worldwide – fleeing conflict and disaster, making dangerous journeys in search of safety.

Christian Aid Week was set up 60 years ago to support our work with refugees in Europe following the Second World War.

Let’s act again now, to help relieve suffering and build a world where everyone has a safe place to call home.

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Nejebar fled violence in Afghanistan, but her hopes of a safe, peaceful future for her family feel like a distant dream. They’ve spent the last six months in a tent in a refugee camp in Greece, huddled together against the wind and rain.

This Christian Aid Week raise money to transform the lives of our neighbours like Nejebar.

From the Manse

On Sunday 14th May we will hold our Annual Church Meeting which will follow on from the morning service. This meeting is not intended to be a long meeting but it is an important part of the life of the church. During this meeting we will elect the church stewards and also elect members to sit on the Church Council. If you feel able to volunteer as a church steward please see me before the meeting.

Apart from electing some of the church officers, the meeting will also receive reports from the various church committees.

Each year we also look at the Church Mission Statement and consider its implications for the next year. The mission statement reminds us that ” as the people of Hartford Methodist Church we will show God’s love to the community of Hartford and to the world through our actions and deeds as a living Christian fellowship.

God Bless

Chris Pritchard

Praying For Kenya

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On Sunday we remembered our link with the Kenya Fund and Timboni Primary school.

Several countries in East Africa are facing drought following multiple poor rainy seasons. Drought, along with economic insecurity, crop failures, livestock deaths, ongoing conflict and climatic shock has led to food insecurity and the need for food assistance for more than 17 million people across East Africa.

Kenya has been experiencing erratic rainfall and prolonged dry spells. About 70 percent of Kenyans are smallhold farmers who grow crops and/or keep livestock. The erratic weather has resulted in reduced crop yield, crop failure and reduced animal pastures, as well as dwindling or drying of many water sources such as rivers, streams and ponds.

The ongoing prolonged drought has resulted in thedeath of livestock and acute food and water shortages. In towns and cities, food prices have gone up by 50 to 60 percent. In February, the Kenyan government declared the ongoing drought a national emergency. The government also projects the number of food insecure people in Kenya will significantly increase from 2.7 million to 4 million by the start of April 2017.

Please continue praying for the drought situation Kenya is experiencing in some regions. In 2016 the rains were poor, leaving 1.3 million Kenyans in need of food aid, according to government figures. The government has started distributing maize, beans and rice to those in the worst affected northern and coastal regions.

Praise God, there has been rain in the last few weeks in some regions. Please keep on praying that the efforts of the Kenyan government and NG organisations would bring much needed relief to those affected, especially as they begin to till their lands in preparation for the next season.

Project in Kenya

Nestled in the Githutha hills, 30 kilometres northwest of Nairobi, Kenya, lies a traditional farming community.

Life is a challenge for the people of Githutha. Here unpredictable weather conditions cause havoc with crop yields. More often than not, the subsistence farmers don’t have enough food to place on the table. Traditional family structures have been ravaged by HIV and AIDS and many in the community have turned to the local homemade alcoholic brew just to get through the day.

As always, it’s the most vulnerable who are hit hardest. Githutha’s children are subject to hunger, child labour and abuse.

But thanks to the Compassion project run by Githutha Church, things are changing.

The community’s poorest children are being given new hope through the Compassion programme.

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Every project day, children gather together to share devotional time and sing songs of worship. Children are introduced to the God who listens to their prayers and answers. Thanks to their sponsor, every child is given the opportunity to attend school and receive additional educational lessons at their project. Children are also taught the Compassion curriculum which covers everything from staying healthy to managing your money well! Children are given nutritious food during break times and lunch. Any children who are identified as malnourished are put on specific feeding programmes and given extra food packages to take home. There’s a focus on developing good hygiene practices. The project even has a demonstration garden to teach children good farming practices to improve crop yields. In a country where the youth unemployment rate is estimated at 25 per cent*, teenagers are taught vital vocational skills. Supportive project staff members give young people guidance in identifying their strengths and giftings. The project is a safe haven where children are known, loved and protected.

http://www.compassionuk.org

Kenya Fund

Jambo! This Sunday we thought about life in Kenya and the circuit’s work for the Kenya Fund.

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Rev Charles Makonde & Joyce  joined our circuit in September 2007 but before coming to England he was the Superintendant at Wesley MC in Mombasa.  They provided our link with Kenya. Since then the Mid Cheshire circuit has supported a range of projects including: an HIV/Aids test and counselling centre and the Timboni nursery and primary school.

Timboni started out as a nursery school under a mango tree. Since fundraising for the school began, new classrooms have been built, resources and teaching aids have been provided, the school has increased in size to take in primary aged children. 8 of the children have now gone on to high school. Daily, the school provides meals for all 306 children.

Today our collection from Davenham, Sandiway, Hartford and Cuddington went to support the work in Kenya.

Please pray for the work in Kenya.

 

Fun, Food and Fellowship

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Come and Join Us! for an afternoon of fun, games and food on Saturday 6th May in the Church Hall. Activities start at 3pm with afternoon tea served at 4.30pm. There will be a treasure hunt around the church, games in the church hall and chance to chat over food. Tickets £3