|Felpham Methodist Church||
What’s your favourite topping? For me, it’s lemon and sugar, my children love jam, my wife enjoys Nutella. What am I talking about? Pancakes of course.
As Pancake day arrives, for many the frying pans come out, the pancakes are tossed, and the ones that don’t get stuck on the ceiling are eaten.
For Christians, Shrove Tuesday is an important milestone, as it marks the last day before Lent. Lent is the period of time where we remember Jesus’ 40 days in the wilderness – which will take us to Holy Week when we remember Jesus trial, death and resurrection.
For many years Christians have marked Lent in various ways.
Some people give things up, as a reminder of Jesus fasting in the wilderness.
Some people take things up, perhaps reading a book of the Bible through Lent.
Either way, Lent becomes a time of seeking to live differently.
It’s in this living differently that the true importance of Lent becomes clear, because as Christians, doing something differently during Lent is one way of us renewing our commitment to Jesus, of strengthening our faith, and challenging ourselves to live in ways that are more positive for ourselves, the world or others.
So whether you’re going to give something up or take something up, I pray through seeking to live differently this Lent you might also experience Jesus differently, find your faith strengthened as live more positively for self, others and the world.
Every blessing as we journey through Lent together,
My 2 daughters are incredibly excited. Ever since the advent calendars came out they have known Christmas is on the horizon. As decorations go up, lights appear along the street, and presents gather around the tree the excitement and joy has been building.
For at least 400 years, people had been waiting for the Messiah God had promised would come. Multiple generations had gone by as they waited for the promised one who would lead them into freedom and give them hope. They had been waiting so long that any excitement and joy had disappeared.
For me, the excitement and joy of Christmas comes on Christmas Day because the waiting is over. God’s promise to bring hope and freedom to all the world has come and is cradled in a manger. Jesus is here; born in a stable, announced by angels and worshipped by shepherds and magi and you and me.
In the excitement and joy of the festive season, I pray you will know the joy of freedom and hope that Jesus brings.
From all at FMC we wish you a very Happy Christmas, and a blessed 2020.
TO LEAVE AND REMAIN… Part 1
The sky turned black.
The world watched…. and waited.
Jesus’ time seemed to be up.
He’d gathered with his friends, shared their final meal together.
“I will soon have to leave you” he said.
He’d gone to pray in the garden,
“Father, let this suffering leave me” he prayed.
Then he was betrayed.
handed over, put on trial.
His disciples scattered, leaving Jesus alone.
‘Crucify Him’ the crowd shouted.
So he was. Stripped. Flogged.
Marched up the hill.
And there, there he was killed.
Hung from a cross and left to die.
Jesus had left.
His followers lost.
What to do now that Jesus no longer remained with them?
TO LEAVE AND REMAIN… Part 2
The Sun rose.
The world awoke.
The past week’s event almost forgotten.
Not for his followers.
The women gathered early.
Jesus might have left, but his body remained.
So they headed out to the tomb.
When they got there, the stone had moved and the body was gone.
All that remained were the burial clothes.
Now nothing remained. All had been taken.
And then, as Mary sat weeping,
He didn’t leave.
Somehow he remained.
Mary ran to the others, told them Jesus lived.
They struggled to believe.
And then, then Jesus appeared.
I am alive, he declared.
“Now I must leave, I can’t be with you in person any longer.
But my Spirit will remain with you always.”
To this day, by his Spirit, Jesus remains.
Transforming lives and communities through his unconditional love,
and longing for us to remain in him and experience his love
About 2000 years ago, a baby boy was born in Bethlehem, and placed in a manger because there was no room in the inn. Most people in Bethlehem that night slept, unaware of what was occurring just around the corner. 2000 years later, who would have imagined that a baby boy placed in a manger would continue to have such an impact on individuals and communities.
Across the world, communities and even families Christmas traditions are aplenty. For me and my family, we would always cross our arms to pull crackers before we tucked into our Christmas dinner, my Gran would always give us a sugar mouse, and (unless it was pouring with rain!!) we always went for a Christmas Day afternoon walk – to burn off some of the turkey dinner if nothing else!
Sometimes it’s the little, somewhat insignificant things that actually hold significance. A bit like how a baby placed in a manger passed many people by that night, little and insignificant. And yet, in time, the boy grew up and became significant, and continues to be for many today.
So however you are celebrating Christmas this year, remember that even little things can hold great significance.
I pray you all have a very Happy Christmas, and blessed 2019.
Hello! My name’s Dan and I’ve recently joined the community at Felpham Methodist Church as minister here (as well as being minister at Bognor Regis and Westergate Methodist Churches too). I’ve moved here with my wife, Louise, and 2 children and we are all excited to be living near the sea. We're also excited to be meeting and getting to know the people at Felpham Methodist Church and the Felpham community.
I’m what the Methodist Church calls a ‘probationer’ which means I’m still learning and training! I’ve moved here straight from Birmingham, having spent 2 years studying at The Queens Foundation, in readiness for my first appointment. Over the next 2 years I will be continuing studying alongside my work in the churches here, and God willing will be ordained in the summer of 2020.
In the meantime, I’m looking forward to getting to know the community of Felpham, exploring the future together and hearing more about what goes on in the church and community here, while hopefully getting involved too!
Felpham Methodist Church has much to offer, from groups and events for young people, to the ‘coffee stop’ community drop in (with homemade cakes!). Please do take a look around our website which we continue to update and develop to share all that is happening in the life of this community. You will always find a warm and loving welcome at Felpham Methodist Church, because we firmly believe that just as God’s love extends to everyone, we should live that out in the welcome we give to those we meet.
If you ever have questions about Church, Christianity, faith, would like to meet with me or one of the Churches ministry team, or are interested in coming along to something but a bit nervous about coming for the first time, please feel free to get in touch with me for a chat. I’d love to hear from you.