Wesley Services – October 2009 4th 10-30 am In Touch Wesley Methodist Church, Carmarthen October 2009 1st Nov Members Service Just a thought….. 11th J Birch 18th Rt Rev Bishop Sergeant 25th Rev F Randall (HC) Rev F Randall 6-00 pm Rev F Randall (HC) n.b. From this month there will only be an evening service on the 1st Sunday, which will include Holy Communion Rev F Randall (HC) Last year, one of the joys of being in pre-ordination training was spending time with ministers in a variety of situations. One such day was spent with a minister who served in a rural circuit north of Blackpool. As part of that day we visited a sheep and dairy farm run by a family of life-long Methodists who proved to be people of great faith indeed. As we stood in the cattle shed I learned just how dedicated farmers have to be. They told me about how many hours they work each day and how they rarely took a day off. They told me about their concern for the welfare of the animals and showed me the lengths they go to achieve this. And they also told me of the difficulties inherent in small holding farming. For example just the day before a milk co-operative they were part of had folded leaving them severely out of pocket and at the mercy of big companies who paid them even less than their milk cooperative had been able to. They also went on to explain that if each family member was to take a wage, then the farm would be financially unviable. However in large part they could live with that uncertainty because they saw their work, less as a job and more as a vocation. I asked them if all the difficulties ever affected their faith and their answer was simply to quote those great lines from the prophet Habakkuk, ‘Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crops fail and the field produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Saviour.’ Habakkuk 3:17-18 I don’t mind saying that I was completely moved by their response that day. As I said before these were undoubtedly people of great faith! I tell you this story because coming from the city, as I have, there can be a tendency at harvest to say thank you for the produce and forget the producers. It’s so important during the harvest season not just to give thanks for all God’s bounteous provision, but also to remember our hardworking farmers and pray for both those we know as well as those we don’t. Their work is unrelenting, difficult and extremely important and we need often to say thank you to God for each of them. Every blessing, Felicity Stewards Vestry 4th October a.m. Lorette Hinson 4th October p.m. Angela Vooght 11th October Angela Vooght 18th October Margaret Birch 25th October Hilary Gould 1st November a.m. Lorette Hinson Door 4th October a.m. p.m. 11th 18th 25th 1st Nov a.m. p.m. Marjorie Hinson Brian Aylward Hope Ackrill Peter Sharp Sue and Roger Marjorie Hinson Graham Edwards DIARY DATES Thursday Oct 22nd, 7.15 at Burry Port— Circuit Meeting Tuesday Oct 27th, 7.15 at Burry Port Open Meeting with Rev Richard Halls, Learning for Discipleship Officer, Wales Training Forum (Please try and support this event!) "Jesus Christ did not say, 'Go into the world and tell the world that it is quite right.'" - C S Lewis My memory is nearly gone; but I remember two things: That I am a great sinner, and that Christ is a great Saviour. - Isaac Newton We are the Bibles the world is reading; We are the creeds the world is needing; We are the sermons the world is heeding. - Billy Graham We need volunteers for door and vestry duty. If you would like to help, particularly as a greeter on the door, please have a chat to Marjorie Hinson to find out what is involved. The newsletter of Wesley Methodist Church, Carmarthen. Minister : Rev Felicity Randall (Tel 01267 236004) Contributions to John Birch by 20th of month please (email firstname.lastname@example.org) (Felicity’s study day is Tuesday and her day off is Saturday) Changes to Services at Wesley At the last Church Council meeting, the subject of evening services was raised, and the decision agreed to change to one evening service per month. This will be on the first Sunday of each month and will include the Sacrament of Holy Communion. The change will take place this month, so please check the preaching plan on the back of In Touch. For those who are unable to get to church, it is the intention to take a service to people’s houses through the week should that be requested, so that everyone has the opportunity to join in our worship. Please talk to Felicity or a member of the Pastoral Visiting group. Harvest - A Short History Great is Thy Faithfulness The Song and the Story Great is thy faithfulness, O God my Father; there is no shadow of turning with thee; thou changest not, thy compassions, they fail not; as thou hast been thou forever will be. Refrain: Great is thy faithfulness! Great is thy faithfulness! Morning by morning new mercies I see; all I have needed thy hand hath provided; great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me! Thomas Obadiah Chisolm (1866-1960) had a difficult early adult life. His health was so fragile that there were periods of time when he was confined to bed, unable to work. Between bouts of illness he would have to push himself to put in extra hours at various jobs in order to make ends meet. After coming to Christ at age 27, Thomas found great comfort in the Scriptures, and in the fact that God was faithful to be his strength in time of illness and weakness, and to provide his needs. Lamentations 3:22-23 was one of his favorite scriptures: “It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness.” While away from home on a missions trip, Thomas often wrote to one of his good friends, William Runyan, a relatively unknown musician. Several poems were exchanged in these letters. Runyan found one of Williams' poems so moving that he decided to compose a musical score to accompany the lyrics. Great is Thy Faithfulness was published in 1923. For several years ,the hymn got very little recognition, until it was discovered by a Moody Bible Institute professor who loved it so much that the song became the unofficial theme song of the college. It was not until 1945 when George Beverly Shea began to sing the hymn at the Billy Graham evangelistic crusades, that the hymn was heard around the world. Thomas Chisolm died in 1960 at age 94. During his lifetime, he wrote more than 1,200 poems. Coffee Mornings Here are the figures for September. Sept. 2nd £45.48 Sept. 9th 61.70 Sept. 16th 96.87 Sept. 23rd 82.15 Sept. 30th 90.40 Total 376.60 The average figure was £75.32. There were some very busy sessions in the month. The low figure for September 2nd was due to Janet buying supplies at a cost of £32.08. So it was a very good month. The treasurer would like to acknowledge with thanks an anonymous gift of £250 towards the cost of the kneelers and falls which were bought a year ago. The kneelers certainly made a big improvement to the appearance of the church. Harvest is from the Anglo-Saxon word hærfest, "Autumn". It then came to refer to the season for reaping and gathering grain and other grown products. The full moon nearest the autumnal equinox is called the Harvest Moon. So in ancient traditions Harvest Festivals were traditionally held on or near the Sunday of the Harvest Moon. This moon is the full Pause for Thought moon which falls in the month of Pause for Thought moves from its Friday September. morning slot to Wednesdays, when An early Harvest Festival used to be Felicity will be available in the Church celebrated at the beginning of the from 11.30 until 1pm. Harvest season on 1 August and was called Lammas, meaning 'loaf Mass'. Farmers made loaves of bread from the fresh Harvest wheat crop. These were given to the local Please join us for Harvest Supper on church as the Communion bread during a Monday 5th, 7pm at Wesley. special service thanking God for the harvest. Homes & Gardens visits Nowadays the festival is held at the end The season is over (!) and thanks to all of harvest, which varies in different parts who contributed to a successful year. An of Britain. excellent £1460 was raised for the The modern British tradition of ministry in our circuit. Breaking the celebrating Harvest Festival in churches figures down, £738 was raised by began in 1843, when the Reverend Robert Carmarthen hosts, and £670 was gift Hawker invited parishioners to a special aided. thanksgiving service at his church at Morwenstow in Cornwall. Victorian hymns such as "We plough the fields and Brownies scatter", "Come ye thankful people, come" Numbers in the Brownie pack are a little and "All things bright and beautiful" but low, so if you know any young families in also Dutch and German harvest hymns in your area then please pass the word along translation helped popularise his idea of that there’s a warm welcome to any harvest festival and spread the annual newcomers wanting to give them a try! custom of decorating churches with home -grown produce for the Harvest Festival service.
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