Newssheet May 24th

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Dear Friends,

A boat crashed into rocks and began to sink.
'Does anybody know how to pray? Shouted the skipper.
'Yes, I do, said a keen Christian, leaping to his feet.
'Good' said the skipper. 'You pray. the rest of us will put on life jackets. We're one short!'

Charles Spurgeon (19th Century Baptist Preacher) was once asked, 'When should I pray? Should I pray when I don't feel like it?'
He replied 'Pray when you feel like it, because God will bless you; pray when you don't feel like it, because that is when you need it most.'

A report from Tear Fund has shown that 1 in 20 people have started praying since the lockdown, despite not having prayed before. Some said that it was because they believed in God, some because they felt prayer made a difference, some because it was a time of crisis and some because it brought them comfort.

We are encouraged to pray on any and every occasion however the Archbishop of Canterbury has once again through 'Thy Kingdom Come' led the call for people to make prayer a special priority during the ten days between Ascension Day (May 21st) and Pentecost (May 31st).
It is a period that reflects the time the disciples spent praying together having witnessed Jesus ascend into heaven and whilst they were waiting for the power of the Holy Spirit to come upon them.

During 'Thy Kingdom Come' we are then asked to focus our prayers on:

Deepening our own relationship with Jesus Christ.
Praying for 5 friends or family to come to faith in Jesus.
Praying for the empowerment of the Spirit that we would be effective in our witness.

We may not be meeting in church buildings at present, but we can take time to pray in the quietness of our room, out in the garden or whilst enjoying a walk.

Rejoice in the Lord always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5.16,17)

News from Boys Brigade... in Lockdown!

Hello to you all, I am writing this as the captain of the Boys Brigade company based at Alton Methodist Church, and like you all, I and the Brigade am having to adapt and adopt new ways to carry on with life, and engaging our young people.

Almost at the instant that Boys Brigade informed us that meetings were to be cancelled, a team at BB HQ started producing resource material for us to use and send out to our Boys. We at Alton have been cherry picking items, so as not to overload the boys or have 6 boys each doing six different things, as well as have them doing some things of our own that would have been relevant to our (now abandoned) program.

For the older ones (school year 7 upward) I have hosted a video chat meeting, and will be doing so again this week.

For the commemoration of VE day, there were a variety of challenges for the boys to have a go at, ranging from helping with a street party to designing a medal. Some of the efforts and results are shown here. (Captain Pete Burgess)

Ways to Worship

Sunday Worship — Hymns, Songs, Readings and Reflections led by Philip and friends. This week Carol Gaines from Hale Chapel is doing the reading.

The Methodist Church have provided a weekly printed sheet (attached) to help us share in worship whilst at home.

BBC Radio 4 Sunday Worship at 8.10am.
BBC 1 'Sunday Worship' — from Bangor Cathedral (11:45 Check time)
The BBC also offer 'Songs of Praise' at 1:15pm — Stories of Faith from around our Islands.

A Prayer
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

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