November Pastoral Update

Dear Church Family,

As we awake this morning and journey into this new day may these precious words of Scripture feed our spirit and strengthen our hearts … 

Lamentations 3: 22-23

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases, His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

Many will be trying to process the news last night that we enter a further national state of restrictions this Thursday, another lockdown until early December.  There will be some activities still allowed to continue, most importantly health appointments and checks will go ahead to enable folk to access essential care, plus bubble support groups can continue.  For our younger folk, school attendance, university and early years education can continue. We are encouraged to stay at home for work purposes where possible and we will see restrictions for non essential shopping and leisure activities amongst other guidelines.

Within Church the guidance is not fully clear yet from our Methodist Connexion but meeting for worship has been suspended according to the Government website, but we can continue to open for prayer which we will do on Friday mornings from 10.30am till 12 noon, do join us if you are able.  There is also a beautiful book for you to look through with all our postcards sent in during lockdown.  If you still have your postcard to send it is not too late to add it to the album! There are also spare ones at the church that you can fill in when you next visit us. We had just closed Monday evenings beginning this week as the weather has become colder and the nights darker, for safety.  If you would be interested in joining a Zoom prayer meeting during an evening do reply and I will set this up and send you the details … sadly this means our November Remembrance Day services will not be able to go ahead.  We will still plan for December services and send out details later this month to everyone in a magazine update. We hold all before God in hope and trust. 

Pastoral Contacts will be in touch in the coming days to see how everyone is.  If you have not received a phone call or hear of another member who has not, do let me know.  If you have never had a pastoral contact and would like to be allocated one do let me know.  It is one of the ways we can support each other and stay connected. It is imperative that we watch over one another in love and the news from last night will have caused much distress to some of our folk, who have already been isolated for some time and for many who have found this time very worrying, for various reasons.  It is amazing how much a phone call, letter or kind gesture can encourage and strengthen us … this is a time to pull together, support one another and PRAY!

I will make sure that this letter is posted out to our folk who do not have email access so we can keep our communication lines open to all.  Also please remember that our Support Team is still up and running so …

If you would like to send in a prayer request to our dedicated prayer team please do so by contacting our co-ordinator Jean Walsh … prayer@emmanuelmethodistreading.org.uk

If you need practical help of any kind do let us know … Gina Tagoe is our co-ordinator … support@emmanuelmethodistreading.org.uk

If you have a safeguarding issue around personal or family concerns do contact our Safeguarding Officer Dr Obi Onovo … safeguarding@emmanuelmethodistreading.org.uk

If you are concerned about your offerings for church or would like to make a donation please contact Richard Walkem our Treasurer and we can make arrangements to give you our bank details or collect in person … treasurer@emmanuelmethodistreading.org.uk

If you would like a conversation or any other form of help please email or phone me anytime ...

maria.howard@methodist.org.uk or minister@emmanuelmethodistreading.org.uk … 0118 9583445

Another Scripture to hold close …

Ephesians 13-18 

Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.

Remember … Emmanuel, God is with us always … this is a promise folks and God keeps his promises!

My thoughts, love and prayers,

Deacon Maria 😊

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Post: Emmanuel Methodist Church, 448 Oxford Road, Reading, RG30 1EE

Emailminister@emmanuelmethodistreading.org.uk

Phone: 0118 958 3445

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