Weekly News Letter - 20th December 2020

St James

AT THE HEART OF THE COMMUNITY

A Very Warm Welcome to Everyone

I hope you are well and your plans for Christmas are coming together.  

I am beginning to feel a bit more Christmasy.  On Monday night, courtesy of Wetherby Choral Society, I enjoyed my first ever Zoom Carol Service.  It was excellent.  Of course I missed the squashing into church, the mince pies and mulled wine, and most of all, my voice being drowned out by other people's singing (although I had my laptop speaker at full volume, I could still hear my singing - which is never welcome).  Nevertheless, different as it was, it was still good.  Indeed I was surprised that the words of the readings and carols spoke to me with a new clarity.

For some people this Christmas will be busier than usual, please spare a prayer for, among others, those in the caring and health professions.  For others of us this Christmas has a bit more space than usual.  The rushing around is not as frantic this year.  There is much that we will sadly miss.  But perhaps, it is in the space that God can speak to us afresh.  Maybe this year, as we await with expectation the birth of our Saviour, there can more of "pregnant pause" than usual. 

It is in this pause, this waiting, that God can be at work.  Remember the prophet Elijah (1 Kings 19.11.13); it is not in the noise of earthquake, wind and fire that he hears God, but in the still small voice. In the waiting, the pause, something new comes to birth.

As we await the coming of our Saviour may we hear his voice and something new be born in us.

Brendan

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Booking Christmas Services (to attend in person in church booking is essential, except for 8am Holy Communion)
All our services up until Sunday 10th January are available to book via Eventbrite on this link:  Eventbrite link or by phoning the Parish Office 01937 583074 (until Friday 18th December) or phoning our Churchwarden Jean Heaton 07866 366314.  If you want to attend please do book early.  If you miss the deadline for booking, or need to change a booking after the deadline please contact Jean Heaton on 07866 366314.   Eventbrite will say "Event Closed", but there may still be spaces available so please do contact us. 

When booking if there are no tickets left for your size bubble please do book the next bubble size up that is available.  The bubble sizes are the maximum we can fit into each pew wilst maintaining social distancing so please be careful not to book a bubble size smaller that your group size, as we will not be able to fit more in.  One ticket is issued for each booking no matter what size of the bubble. 

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Sunday 20th December - The Fourth Sunday of Advent   

8.00 am Holy Communion BCP

10.00am Family Communion - (Booking essential) and live on Facebook and YouTube St James Facebook page  St James YouTube channel  There will be something for all ages.

6.30pm Carols by Candlelight - A shortened traditional Carol Service with wonderful readings and favourite carols led by our splendid choir.  (Booking essential) and live on Facebook and YouTube.

Whether in Church or at home please join us for worship this Sunday.  You are most welcome.

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Our special Christmas services (booking is essential):

24th December Christmas Eve - 2.00pm; 4.00pm and 6.00pm 2020 Christingles - Please join us in church for a Christmas Torchlight Journey for all the family.  Bring a torch, and come on a wonderful journey - Covid-secure carols, drama and Christingles to take home!  No need to dress up, but if you want to come as a shepherd, angel, king or donkey you are welcome! 

At these services a collection will be taken for The Children's Society, which does excellent work with the most vulnerable children and young people of our nation.

24th December Christmas Eve - 11.30pm Midnight Christmas Communion by Candlelight - Come and join us for the first celebration of Christmas.  A service full of wonder and awe as we rejoice in Christ's coming into our world.

25th December Christmas Day - 8.00am Christmas Communion BCP - A short reflective service when we give thanks for God's gift of himself to his world.

25th December Christmas Day - 10.00am Family Christmas Communion - A joyful celebration of Christmas - with great carols and Christmas message.  A service for all the family.    

Sunday 27th December

10.00am Family Communion - Booking required - live streamed on Facebook

Sunday 3rd January

8.00 am Holy Communion BCP 

10.00am Family Communion - Booking required - live streamed on Facebook

Sunday 10th January 

8.00 am Holy Communion BCP

9.30am Parish Communion - Booking required please

11.00am Worship @11.00 - Booking required please, and live on Facebook and YouTube

May the Christ, the light of the world, illuminate your path.

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Toy Collection

Thank you to everyone who kindly gave tpys for the Parish of Seacroft.  We took this picture on Friday morning              IMG_0373.jpeg         and by the Sunday morning the altar area was overrflowing with goodies.  Thank you for your generosity. 

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Zoom Coffee
We can't meet physically for coffee but we can meet virtually.  After the Sunday Service - about 10.45am the Reverend Janet Cox will host our virtual coffee.  It is a really good opportunity to see people - those you know and perhaps those you can get to know.  This is a great way of strengthening the community of the church in these lonely times.

All are very welcome.  Join Zoom Coffee Meeting ID: 776 8065 3677  Passcode: 9PYfgq

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Shared Lives

We have been asked to publicise the Leeds Council Shared Lives scheme.  This is a very worthwhile project that clearly has the potential to make a huge difference to people's lives. We commend it to you and attach a poster here: 20200324 FINAL Shared Lives A4 poster printable_2020_HR.PDF 

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St James' Open for Private Prayer

St James' is open for individual private prayer 10.00 - 11.00am Tuesdays and Thursdays.

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Morning Prayer 9am & Evening Prayer 6pm via Zoom

Informal prayer via zoom.  In addition to Morning Prayer, and following on from the Arhbishops' month of prayer for our nation the Reverrend Janet Cox will continue to host a short (ten minutes) pause for prayer at 6pm each week day evening. The link for both Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer is: Zoom Prayer  Meeting ID: 716 3190 4008  Password: 8QcDqV

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Remembrance Tree - Light up the world
Each Advent we look to the coming Light.  Boy, do we need light now.

Once again be a Remembrance Tree in the Church Grounds, which will be illuminated on Advent Sunday, the 29 November, and remain lit until Epiphany, the 6 January. Dedicating a light on the tree will provide an opportunity to remember someone special at this time.  As in previous years, your name, and the names of those you wish to be remembered, will also be listed in the Memorial Book in Church.

If you would like to dedicate a light please contact Val Lumsden valandjimlumsden@gmail.com  or 01937 584760

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Food Bank - Food needed

The box keeps being filled in double quick time. Thank you everyone who has donated food. There remains need for this help. Non-perishable food can be left in the church porch. Thank you.

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Amazon Smile

Thank you to all who have registered with Amazon Smile to support St James.  If you shop with Amazon please do consider making us your registered charity.  Shop on Amazon Smile at Amazon Smile St James and Amazon donates to St James Wetherby, at no cost to you.  

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Financial Support

"God loves cheerful givers" 2 Cor 9.7

We are extremely grateful to everyone who supports St James' financially.

This support enables us to be at the heart of the community sharing the good news of Jesus Christ.  As part of a diocesan family of churches we also support less well resourced parishes in other parts of the diocese.  Since lockdown, as collections during services have been limited, we have suffered a significant drop in our income.  Unless this income is recovered the things we can do as a church will be severely curtailed.

I would like to ask everyone to consider two things.

1)  If you are not doing so already, please consider setting up a standing order through your bank. (Thank you to those who, since lockdown, have already made this transition.) This is the easiest way to give, and it is Covid- secure. The form for giving and Gift Aid is here:  Regular Giving Form 

Our bank details are:  Wetherby Parochial Church Council account at NatWest Bank PLC  Sort Code: 55-81-11  Account No: 04416775 

2)   If you are able to, please consider increasing your giving. Like everyone else each year inflation means that our costs increase. If it is a while since you increased your regular giving please consider doing so. Or perhaps you might be able to consider a one-off gift to St James', in which case you could support a specific area of church life, Worship, Mission or Fabric?

If you require any further information please contact our Stewardship Officer, Jill Rose 01937 586 640. All information is treated in the strictest confidence.

My old vicar used suggest to people that they give as much as makes them joyful. I thought that was a rather good way of putting it. As St Paul says, "God loves cheerful giver". 2 Cor 9.7

Thank you for all your support. Your generosity is greatly appreciated.

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Tel: 01937 583074 

email: stjames.wetherby@gmail.com

www.stjameswetherby.org.uk

https://www.facebook.com/stjameswetherby