Wednesday, May 04, 2016

May news from Churches Together in Kent

The election for the Police and Crime Commissioner for Kent is due in a couple of days time. As we pray for the right person to be elected, view statements by each candidate here.

There's still time to organize hustings for the EU referendum on 23rd June. Ecumenical resources to help you are available here.
It was great to be at the first gathering of Winter Shelters from across Kent last week. Representing more than a thousand volunteers giving their time, energy and passion to help those who are vulnerable. Churches talking to Local Authorities and the community to embody values of the Kingdom of God.  Winter shelters were represented from Folkestone, Dover, Medway, Tunbridge Wells, Bromley, Thanet, Canterbury, Maidstone, Ashford, Gravesend, Dartford. How good it is when brothers & sisters dwell together in unity. There God provides the blessing! Psalm 133. Mark Brennan from Housing Justice gave an inspiring opening message and this network is likely to continue

Christian Aid Week 15 to 22 May. 

In Bangladesh, Morsheda lives in fear of the river. No matter how hard she works, every year the floods damage her home, leaving her and her children struggling to cope.  Morsheda told us;  ‘I feel very scared of the river. When I look at it I keep thinking “it is coming”.’ 
Please join us and together, we can lift our global neighbours like Morsheda to safety this Christian Aid Week.  See more about Morsheda’s story. Your gift could help raise Morsheda’s home on to an earth plinth and protect her and her family from floods.  Give online today.

Focus on Refugees.
This ia a web-based one-stop source of information covering news, policy, practical action and resources for those in the faith community interested in refugee and asylum issues.  Read more  Our prayers are also with the Canterbury Diocese as they appoint a member of staff to engage with issues around unaccompanied minors in Kent.

Father Paul Mason, Episcopal Vicar for Kent, for the Catholic Church, has just been appointed as bishop. Having covered for Bishop John Hine, in a temporary capacity, we are delighted that Paul's appointment has been confirmed by Rome. His installation is at the Catholic Cathedral in Southwark on 31 May.
It's all change at the Salvation Army. Do pray for our brothers and sisters as they undergo a major restructuring at regional and national level at the end of June. Pray also for Mark Herbert, the new Divisional Commander, who takes up post at the same time. Our thanks and prayers go to Ray and Angela Irving who stepped into the breach a couple of years ago. We wish a very blessed retirment to them both.

It's not too late to order materials to celebrate the faith of HM the Queen, around her official 90th birthday.  "The servant queen and the King she serves." is a great little book.   Follow this link to ideas from Premier Christian Radio for celebrating with your community, or this link to HOPE and the booklet.

A New Framework for Local Unity in Mission.
This is an exciting, significant, practical, ecumenical document. It seeks to map what is happening as churches and Christians work ever more closely together at a local level. Vital for Local Churches Together Groups, Single Congregation LEPs, and other creative missional ecumenism. Read it here.

The Church of England has released a prayer for the EU referendum campaign.

The prayer is for use by churches and individuals ahead of the vote on June 23.

God of truth,
give us grace to debate the issues in this referendum
with honesty and openness.
Give generosity to those who seek to form opinion
and discernment to those who vote,
that our nation may prosper
and that with all the peoples of Europe
we may work for peace and the common good;
for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Chris Ruddle
County Ecumenical Officer.
07808 728670

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