St. James Hope, 3 Vicarage Close, Salford, M6 8EJ
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What You Need To Know (July & August 2023)

Summer (and beyond) Sermon Series

There is an ongoing theme over these months that emphasises the unity and diversity of the church. It’s not always easy to balance these two aspects of life. Too much emphasis on diversity – of background, of mission, of gifting and people can lose the sense of belonging. Too much emphasis on belonging and they can feel like ‘another brick in the wall’. (You have to be a certain age to recognise that quote).

The truth is that we are called as individuals to become a community and each individual offers specific gifts and opportunities which mean we are all richer because of that.

Sermons in July: We are One … and Purposefully Different

When a single shaft of white light hits a prism, the prism breaks the light into separate colours and displays it as a multi-coloured rainbow. When God sends his Spirit among his people, the results create new possibilities because of the different ways works out his purpose in our lives. It leads to difference, and the difference is beautiful. We will be concentrating on Paul’s encouragement to the church in Corinth – people brought together by Christ but from so many different backgrounds. You can read about the challenges and joys in 1 Corinthians 11-14.

Tell Your Stories

In August we will change our Sunday routines. We won’t have sermons as such, but we will create space for us to share our own stories of what God has been doing. There will be q chance to hear the experiences of the young people who come back from Criccieth, then there will be a service on the 20th when we just open the service to people to share testimonies and on the final August Sunday we will give much more space and time to worship.

There will be no Children’s work in August – so if you have little ones who will be sitting with you, feel free to bring books and activities if they get restless in the services.

Criccieth Camp

Tuesday 1 August – Thursday 10 August

The camp for the young people is happening this summer holidays. Please pray for the leaders – including Andrew and Alex and Ian and Morag who are also going this year. And pray for the young people that they will have a great time and also encounter Jesus in new ways.

If you can help them set the camp up on Saturday 29 July or help them close the camp up on Thursday 10 August, it would be most appreciated. Please talk with Andrew or Alex if you can help them.

Baptismal Sunday

Sunday 16 July • 11.30 am

We are going to be baptising a number of people during this service. Baptism is the first step on the Christian pathway. If you haven’t been baptised yet, but you know this is the right step for you, please talk with Neil or Ian.

On this Sunday we will be going for a picnic in Buile Hill park after the service. So bring your packed lunches and a sun hat!

Gift Aid

‘Gift Aid’ is an opportunity to increase your giving to the Church, at no extra cost to you. If you are a UK taxpayer, giving by Gift Aid is simple yet hugely effective.

The value of your giving can be increased by 25%.

E.g. For every £1 given we can claim back 25p.

If you would like to be part of this and increase your giving by signing up to Gift Aid, a declaration form needs to be filled in and passed to Jo Parkinson, Finance officer. The forms are available at the information point. You will be given a unique reference number that you should then use when giving, so your giving can be recorded to allow the Gift Aid to be claimed back.

As a church we also make use of the Gift Aid small donations scheme. This additional scheme allows donations given via the weekly collection baskets to be used to claim additional income in the same way as the traditional Gift Aid scheme. To qualify, the individual gift should not be greater than £30, and should not be made by a giver who has already signed a declaration form.

Thank you to those of you who have already signed up to the Gift Aid scheme and to those who regularly give on a Sunday. At a time when many are feeling the effects of the current economic climate, we continue to see an increase in our giving.

Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

2 Corinthians 9:7


Sunday 3 September

There will be be a final picnic for the summer together on Sunday 3 September, after our service.

Save the date & Come:

Saturday 23 September • Barnstondale Centre (Wirral)

We are having our ‘NOT the Weekend Away BUT Day Away’. Over the years we have had regular weekends away as a church but with rising costs and the difficulties of finding places that can house us all, we thought that this year we would have a DAY AWAY that would include all the best bits of a weekend away at a fraction of the cost. There will be things for everyone to do – from toddlers to 90 year olds

We will give more details about signing up and paying for the day over the next weeks. The cost for an adult is £15 and for a child (over 5) is £10. This includes the cost of an evening meal, but you will need to bring a packed lunch. If the cost would stop any of you from coming, please talk to Neil or Jo Parkinson (our treasurer).

We will be going to Barnstondale Centre, Storeton Lane, Wirral CH61 1BX. You can see the place here.

Please plan to be with us.

There won’t be evening prayer meetings or housegroups in August.

But please do pray – and do meet up with people for meals and walks. Stay in touch with God and one another!

This may be interesting for you…

Why not take some time over the summer to engage in some deeper study and thinking. Elim have put together 3 short courses that are open to everyone. You can get details here.

There are short videos and then online questionnaires for you to complete.

The three courses are:

Being Pentecostal

Maybe you belong to a Pentecostal church but you want to know more about what you really believe, and what the practices are. Or maybe you just want to find out more about Pentecostalism even though that might not be your background.

Learning From Experience

We all have experiences in life, good experiences, amazing times of celebration, but we also face challenges, trials and situations that cause us to lament. The question is, are you learning from your experiences?

You might think learning from experience sounds easy but the reality is there are some tools that we can use in order to make sure we maximise our learning. In this course we will look at some mirrors that can help us to reflect, some models that can structure our reflection, and ways to ensure our reflection is rooted in our understanding of God. The ultimate goal is to put tools in your hand in order to become more like Jesus in the way that you interact in the workplace, at home, in our families and relationships.

Helping People Effectively

We are told in Mark 12:30-31 that we are to love God with all our hearts, mind, soul and strength, and to love others as we love ourselves.

Loving God and loving others will bring us into situations where we meet people who are in need. They may be struggling with different situations in life, or want to chat a challenge through, or share a situation with you. This course is designed to help us think through some basic skills that will help us be more effective in the way we help others.

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