One of our most important events of the year is the Carol Service(s). Last year nearly 400 people visited over the two services and enjoyed carols, readings, mince pies and they got to hear the gospel - some for the first time.
This year will be our first Carol Service in HMC, or in fact in any church! We are delivering invitation cards to the homes around the church (if you would like to help please contact Colin and Theresa) and I would love you to distribute the invitation cards to friends, family, neighbours, colleagues, strangers, pets, astronauts, anyone.
I want to give Ben the challenge of having to open the balcony.
It's not too late to join the choir either; please contact Mike Byde or Helen Hicks.
The team of people who are paid to work for the church has changed a lot in the last couple of years as the work we are doing has been changing. Some of these changes are very hard to make (for everyone) and we do our very best to do it well. Very reluctantly we have recently had to make Hannah Ripping's position redundant. She is amazing and has handled this adversity brilliantly. Read more here.
Last Sunday morning Anne encouraged us to respond to injustice with a gift this Christmas. Her talk is here. There is still time for you to join in with one of the five projects for Love in Action this Christmas. You can find out how to do so here. Or sign up on Sunday.
If you are reading this you may not be new to the Vineyard, but you may know someone who is and I would like you to extend an invitation to them, on our our behalf, to come to dinner next Monday evening (for our Welcome Supper). Please ask them to sign up online or call the office. We can arrange a lift if needed.
This is the theme for our traditional prayer and fasting in January. I have been wondering what any of you might say if I asked you, "Why do you think God wants the Leeds Vineyard?" We do lots of stuff, but why, and is all of it what He has called us to do? Maybe it is, maybe it isn't.
I am reminded of something John Wimber (the founder of the Vineyard movement) said about a turning point in his life, whilst working flat out as a highly successful church growth consultant in the USA, "One night in Detroit the Lord clearly spoke to me, "John, I've seen YOUR ministry (in a ‘and I'm not too impressed' tone of voice) and now I would like to show you MINE!"."
So in January, we are going to ask God to show us His ministry. More on this next Sunday when Ben talks about how God has been leading us on a journey.
At the same time we are carrying out a review of our residence at HMC. More to come soon.