Friday, 6 December 2019

Beginning to feel like Christmas..

We're defintely in Christmas mode here in Bermondsey with St James's Churchyard festooned with Christmas publicity banners, and 5,000 Christmas cards about to go out around the two parishes.

And here are the full details of Christmas services at St James's:

And here are the ones for St Anne's:

Thursday, 5 December 2019

Remembering in Rotherhithe

A great Bermondsey tradition took place last night: the annual Albins Memorial Garden Service, this year in the presence of HRH Princess Anne  - with us for this 20th anniversary service.

Large crowds flocked to the garden for the familiar mixture of prayers, readings, musical items, the release of doves, and community carol singing.

Once more bereaved families brought forward stars for the Christmas tree in commemoration of loved ones and prayers were led by the Bishop of Southwark and the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Southwark, concluding with Torbjorn Holt from the Norwegian Church giving the blessing in his native tongue for the last time, prior to his move back to Norway.

Refreshments provided by typical Albins generosity followed after a finale which included a wonderful firework display lighting up the sky over Bermondsey and Rotherhithe.

A very memorable event that brings great comfort to families every year.

Monday, 2 December 2019

St Augustine's on mission

Students (left) from St Augustine's College of Theology came to St James last week for their first year  mission project.

There was mulled wine, mince pies, the chance to meet a Roman soldier, and the opportunity to write out prayer requests and hang them on the Christmas tree.

Undaunted by the wind and rain, the gallant band made lots of contacts with passers-by, children from the school, and people attending Bermondsey Brew.

They put their heart and soul into the project, which they planned from scratched, and executed in a brilliant piece of team work. Thank you St Augustine's for coming to share with us in Bermondsey.

Sunday, 1 December 2019

Light in the darkness at Providence House

To Providence House, the youth and community Christian mission serving the Winstanley Estate in Battersea, close to Clapham Junction station, for the last 50 years.

I had been invited to speak at their Sunday First event, all age service held on the first Sunday of the month followed by a community tea.

I first came to Providence House when I was curate when I was invited a couple of times to speak to the women's bible study group about marriage, cohabitation and the family. It was probably one of the most memorable experiences of my curacy. I realised then what a special place Providence House was.

It was good to be back at this very special community centre,with a Christian heart, alongside Robert and Susan who have worked here with such love and commitment for so long, this time speaking as part of their 'Advent Adventure, ' on John 1v5: 'The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.'