HERTFORD

UNITED REFORMED CHURCH


349th Anniversary year
 

 

SEPTEMBER 2021

 

MISSION STATEMENT

We aim to be an active Christian Church open to all, meeting together for worship, teaching and prayer and offering loving care and support to all.   We work alongside other Christian Churches reaching out into the community with love.

 

 

MINISTER            

                                    Minister In Attendance during our Interregnum is

                             Rev. Martin Legg:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

                                     

The church is following the URC Guidelines on Safe distancing and operating Covid Secure Precautions

                               

SUNDAY WORSHIP 

10.30 am                Family Worship, lasting approximately 45 minutes.

                               Communion is usually celebrated on the

                               First Sunday of the month

 

WEEKDAY WORSHIP 

11.00 am                Thursday there is time of Reflection and Prayer during our "Open House" Coffee Morning

                                       runs from 10.00 - 12.00 noon. 

                              

HOT POTATO LUNCH Currently Suspended 

12 Noon - 2.00pm  Monthly lunch on 3rd Thursday for alll - encouraging visitors.

 

             Please contact your Elder for urgent pastoral needs.

The diary is at the end of this magazine

 

Sunday 5th September is being designated Climate Sunday, ahead of the UN’s climate change conference, COP26, in Glasgow during November. How should we approach the challenge of climate change?

 

Canon Paul Hardingham considers an urgent problem.

We have damaged God’s creation: God delights in His creation: ‘God saw all that He had made, and it was very good.’(Genesis 1:31). However, we have damaged this world and impacted people, created in His image. The burning of oil or gas and cutting down forests is increasing the concentration of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide that trap heat in the Earth’s atmosphere. The global average temperature could increase by 1.5˚C in 2030, resulting in significant damage to our planet. Already, increasing temperatures are melting ice caps, raising sea-levels, changing rainfall patterns and creating extreme climate events. It’s the 70% of the world’s poorest population who are being impacted most!

Hope is found in Jesus: He has an intimate knowledge of the workings of creation. ‘For in Him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.’(Colossians 1:16,17). Our hope for the future lies in what Jesus has done and continues to do in the world. He is the one who sustains creation and will bring everything to completion.

An invitation to respond: Simple everyday actions can help to sustain our planet, including recycling of waste, energy saving and changes in our lifestyle and diet to help the planet. We can fix our eyes on Jesus, as we pray for our world for our world leaders, gathering in Glasgow, asking that they may reach a good agreement for the future of our world.

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News From Hertford URC

Garden Party – How lovely it was to enjoy an actual ‘summers day’ in the Church Garden on Saturday 14th August. As far as the weather goes, it was probably the best Saturday that we could have chosen. At least all the recent rain has made the gardens look especially good this year and we were able to enjoy the fruits of Mike and Sue’s efforts. We had several visitors as well to boost the numbers and get through all the gorgeous cakes that were provided.   It was such a good afternoon that I forgot to take a photo – so sorry that we haven’t one to put with this article!

Safeguarding – Cheryl, as our Church’s Safeguarding Officer and Fran as her deputy, have recently both undertaken the URC’s training for the Foundation and Intermediate Courses on Safeguarding. This is to help us have a greater understanding of the URC good practice guidelines, including how safe recruitment is carried out within our church and to understand the different Policies and Processes that should be followed to support a ‘Safe Church’.   The serving elders and minister are charity trustees and they have the “primary responsibility” for safeguarding. However we all have a role to play and Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility in making the church and the church premises safe and secure.   If you have any concerns about anything in the way the church is run, or any issues at all that worry you, please contact Cheryl or Fran or your Elder.

Vacancy – The Vacancy Committee will be meeting a prospective candidate on Tuesday 31st August. Please pray for this meeting that all involved will know God’s peace and wisdom as we go forward.

Open House – It has been so good to start up “Open House” again, even though we have not been able to get back our more welcoming coffee table and chairs.   Hopefully these will return when the Foodbank is able to resume its afternoon opening for clients to also join us for tea and coffee as they collect their food parcels, and also when the Ware Foodbank has a more permanent home. Please try to drop in for a coffee or tea every Thursday morning from 10 -12 noon. We look forward to getting back to our previous numbers.

Church Directory – An updated directory is available now, please take a copy. To comply with data protection, this is for circulation only amongst ourselves at church and should not be given to visitors.

 

Prayer Requests – We continue to pray for Heather and Phoebe and for all the family as things continue to be so stressful for them.

 

Prayer Requests – We continue to pray for Heather and Phoebe and for all the family as things continue to be so stressful for them.

Prayer requests

        

We continue to prayer for Pam Hollis that she knows your peace and comfort in Westgate Care Home

In this desperate time of violence and pain we pray for Afghanistan – God of mercy, peace, love, healing and wisdom, turn hearts and minds to your ways of justice and gentle peace.

Hot Potato Lunch

(3rd Thursday every month)

Our Hot Potato Lunches continue to be a great success with all who attend, church members and our regular visitors.

Come and join us for this great outreach to the town every third Thursday in the month.

Our next lunch is on the in ( Currently suspended untill further notice ) the Church Vestibule.

 Sponsored Bike n Hike

                                   Bike 'n Hike 2021 - 11 September

Bike 'n Hike is our main annual fundraising event.  As well as being a great day out, by getting people to sponsor you, you raise essential funds to help repair local churches and chapels which are such important places for their communities. 

Each church that is involved keeps half of the funds raised by its supporters, while the remainder plus gift aid is given out by the Trust as grants to help maintain these historic buildings. 

Last year's event was an outstanding success, raising over £112,800 thanks to bikers, hikers, supporters and organisers, despite Covid restrictions.

Anyone can take part – you don’t have to be a church goer. Other transport such as mobility scooter, car or horse is welcome. Best of all just walking around local churches - find out more below or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Tel:01767 312966

Our Church will be open for visitors from 10.00am to 6.00 pm. Cheryl will need volunteers to be at the church during this time to offer a drink if needed. You might also like to participate in the Bike‘n Hike in which case please get sponsors AND A SPONSOR FORM from Cheryl.

 

 

Kiwoko Hospital

 

I just want to highlight an article I saw in the last Newsletter from Kiwoko which Megan kindly circulated.   If you are placing an order from Amazon UK, the hospital can get commission!! Visit www.kiwokohospital.org and on the bottom right there is a link, which if you click will take you to the usual Amazon website.   Anything you buy could earn up to 10% commissison!!

 

Fran                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

 

Prayer Request Book

 

 The Prayer Request Book is always available on the table at the back of the church for any prayers for people and situations you would like to be included in our Prayers of intercession.   Please ask a Steward if you are not sure where it is.

 

TWO ENVIRONMENT DAYS/EVENTS IN HERTFORD IN SEPTEMBER 2021

All Saints churchyard/church/hall, Saturday 11 September: Environment, Climate and Hope

This programme runs from 10.00 to 16.00. Stay for the day or drop in as it suits you. Through illustrated talks, presentations, stalls and displays, the wonderful wildlife areas in easy reach of Hertford will be celebrated. Alongside this, the day will promote an awareness of just how much our wildlife means to our wellbeing. There will also be suggestions of how to live more sustainably and to protect the environment, taking into account the ravages of climate change, but finding ways to point to hope for the future. The wider issues surrounding climate change will also be considered.

Activities will be spread over three venues associated with All Saints: talks and films in adjacent St John’s Hall, stalls and displays in the church itself, and stalls and activities in the churchyard. Cakes and plants, including native trees, will be on sale. Immi Davis, 8 year old superstar-busker, will perform, as will Nigel Braggins with his spoken-word poetry.

The full programme and more detail, including the invited speakers and film makers, is detailed on a poster at the back of the church.

Two weeks after the All Saints Church event 'Environment, Climate and Hope' on Saturday 11th September, 'Hertford and our Changing Climate' on Saturday 25th September will offer a host of answers to the question 'what more?' with stalls, expert speakers and displays. These events will be for everyone. Please note the date and the logo. Further details will be advertised locally.

 

Hertford-wide event, Saturday 25 September: Hertford and our Changing Climate (HACC)

 

So many people are now aware of the climate situation and the need to do things differently. Hertfordshire County Council has declared a Climate Change Emergency and is pushing on with its ambitious sustainability strategy, and the whole country is aware of the November 2021 COP26 conference in Glasgow.

Fifteen residents from in and around Hertford want to help our county to start to do more to live sustainably. On 25th September we plan to provide an enjoyable town-wide event which is informative, encouraging and enabling to anyone who wants to take steps to reduce carbon emissions, whether in their personal or professional lives.

As well as using Facebook (search Hertford and our Changing Climate), HACC is building a website: www.hacc-herts.org

 

 

Hertford URC ‘s History

 

As David has mentioned in his opening letter of this edition of the magazine, we look forward to the launch of an historical booklet giving a brief overview of the amazing history of our church from its very beginnings in the seventeenth century.

 

This is available at the back of the Church, and to cover the printing costs we hope a donation of £2.00 could be made for each copy.  You will find it fascinating and inspiring to know how our church roots have been established not only by the leadership of ministers but by so many church members that have gone before us.

 

 

 Harvest

 

Our Harvest Celebrations will take place on Sunday 3rd October when we will be inviting Rev Dr John Campbell to lead us in worship.  John has recently retired as Minister at High Cross URC and we are really delighted that he is able to join us this year after his visit last year had to be cancelled due to Lockdown.  This year our Harvest gifts will be sent to WaterAid.

WaterAid

Harvest is a wonderful time for coming together celebrating and giving thanks for all the food we eat.  But it’s also a time to reflect and to think about other communities around the world who don’t have enough to eat.  Families who can’t celebrate good harvests because they don’t have enough water.  That’s why our church is supporting WaterAid this harvest.  With our help WaterAid will bring a steady supply of clean water to more communities that will keep pumping water through drought and flood and for the first time they will have clean water to drink and will be able to grow crops that flourish, year after year.

Often we have collected our loose change in jam jars and I know quite a few of us always do this.  Please bring these and your donations to the Service
This abridged article comes from the LICC’s ‘Connecting with Culture’  It is by Dr Ziya Meral, Senior Associate Fellow, Royal United Services Institute.

 

Why Christians need to rethink defence and security issues
 
The world is changing. It’s on an accelerated path towards some worrying possibilities.
 
Ten years ago, our focus was primarily on combatting extremist terrorists. But for many in defence and foreign policy circles, our assumption was that the world was becoming more peaceful, conflicts less deadly, arms control more effective, and a major war between sovereign states unlikely.
 
Fast forward to 2021: the terror threat hasn’t disappeared, and new forms of terrorism have been added to threat lists. A new global geopolitical competition among powerful countries has emerged, along with competition among regional medium powers often brutally seeking to advance their own interests beyond their borders.
 

There is already a new nuclear arms race unfolding. International law and platforms are undermined, side-lined, and often judged incapable of meeting the current challenges. These are all accelerated by the new industrial revolution we are going through, from drones to artificial intelligence to information flows.

Today’s world is precarious, full of misinformation, and risks of miscalculation that could easily escalate a crisis between countries.

As a Christian working on foreign policy, defence, and security issues, I often find myself asking: what do these factors mean for Christians? But, most importantly: does the gospel have anything to offer a world that is seemingly spinning out of control?

Sadly, there are no easy answers here, and no space for platitudes. Revamping old debates or rhetoric, from ‘just war’ to pacifism, are not of much help; neither are uncritical sentiments towards past wars or today’s militaries. We need new voices and perspectives on global challenges based up on Christian ideals, to discern new personal responsibilities and new frameworks for national and international accountability.

Yet, what is new is most likely to look like what was always a given: appreciation of a good world intended for peace, not war; a fallen world, full of danger; a way forward centred on crucifixion and resurrection that offers an alternative basis for being human; but also a hopeful vision of the future that refuses to give darkness and pain the last words.

Every generation is called to grapple with what God’s salvation story means for the particular challenges they face, and every generation faces the temptation to walk away from the implications of such questions. May our generation take up this mantle, and choose well.

The Revd Dr Jo White considers Holy Communion
The Bread we eat
 
The majority of Sunday morning service in churches throughout the world are based on the Last Supper of Jesus.
 
At the Passover meal, on the night before His death, Jesus took bread, gave thanks, broke it and gave it to His disciples saying, “This is My body given for you;”  (Luke 22:19a). He also took wine and passed it to each of them and said, “This is My blood, given for you.”
 
These two elements, the bread and the wine, continue to be the central focus for Christians: doing what Jesus asked us to do, ‘Do this in remembrance of me’.  (Luke 22:19b)
 
What we call this service varies between denominations and even between churches within the same denomination.
 
It is a way of giving ‘thanks’ as Jesus did (the word ‘Eucharist’ comes from the Greek by way of Latin, and it means ‘thanksgiving’), reminding us not only of the tremendous sacrifice that Christ had made on our behalf, but also recalling the love and joy that Jesus brings to the community.
 
The word ‘Communion’ comes from something done with others – the community. It’s done with Christ. It’s done with other worshippers. In sharing the meal, ‘I’ becomes ‘us’.
The word ‘Mass’ comes from the conclusion to the traditional service – which was in Latin: ‘Ite, missa est.’ ‘Go. You are being sent.’  Today we use similar words, ‘Go in peace, to love and serve the Lord.’
 
At the moment many churches, especially the Church of England, are only giving bread to the congregation with the priest alone consuming the wine.  So the meaning underlying the taking / the giving of bread is more crucial than ever. In some denominations the bread is literally the ‘daily bread’, whilst in others it is a ‘wafer’ or yeast free bread – as was used at the original Passover.
 
This month: Have a look at the bread that is placed into your hands the next time you ‘receive’.  How does it reflect receiving Christ into your life?
 

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September Prayer 

Dear Lord,


September – the month of new beginnings for many, as summer fades and school and college terms start.
After such a strange time of restrictions, hopes of freedom, with warnings to be cautious, it is hard to know what to expect this September.


We can’t know what lies ahead, Lord, but we can trust you to see us through whatever it turns out to be.
Thank you for your promise, I will never leave you or forsake you… (Hebrews 13:5)


Help us to hold fast to that promise, to keep trusting you – and to be thankful for each September day.
In Jesus’ name. Amen.

By Daphne Kitching

 

Night Sanctification

Father, bless me and my body keep,
Father, bless me in my soul;
Father, bless me through this night of sleep,
In my body and my soul.

Father, bless me as I live my days,
Father, bless me in my creed;
Father, bless me in my binding ways,
To my life and to my creed.

Father, sanctify to me my speech,
Father, sanctify my heart;
Father, sanctify my portion each,
In my speech and in my heart.

From Poems of the Western Highlanders

                          Calm Picture

Used Stamps

 Shirley Sloan is still collecting used stamps in the plastic container on the church desk in the Vestibule. Shirley now takes them to the Isobel Hospice Shop that will take all used stamps.

 

Citizen’s Advice – East Herts

We’re still here to help!

If you need advice during the coronavirus outbreak, we’re still here to help. Whilst we’ve had to temporarily close our face to face service you can still contact us in a number of ways if you are an East Herts or Uttlesford resident:

For advice by email go to www.citizensadviceeastherts.org.uk/webadvice

For phone advice please call 03444 111444 10am-4pm Monday to Friday (you may have to wait in a queue but we will get to you as soon as we can). Or call 01920 459944 and leave a message. One of our advisers will get back to you as soon as possible.

You can also access information online at citizensadviceeastherts.org.uk

For medical advice - www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

  1. We will do our very best to answer all calls and emails but, due to a reduction in the number of staff and volunteers we have available, please bear with us at this difficult time. It may be that we have to offer to call you back with more advice at a later time.

 

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CHURCH DIARY FOR 

 SEPTEMBER 2021

 

              

 

        

 

SEPTEMBER 2021

Wed

1            

8.00 pm            

On-line Prayer Meeting with Broxbourne and Cheshunt Churches           

Thurs

2

10.00 am

Open House Coffee Morning  

 

     

 

Sun

5

10.30 am

Morning Worship led by Christine Hall with Holy Communion

Wed

8

8.00 pm

On-line Prayer Meeting with Broxbourne and Cheshunt Churches

Thurs

9

10.00 am

Open House Coffee Morning

Sat

11

10 – 4pm

10 – 4pm

Environment   Awareness Day – All Saints Church

Herts & Beds Sponsored Cycle Ride – Church Open

       

 

Sun

12

10.30 am

Morning Worship led Janet Bird – All Saints Church

Tues

14

1.30 pm

Elders meet in the Church

Wed

15

8.00 pm

On-line Prayer Meeting with Broxbourne and Cheshunt Churches

Thurs

16

10.00 am

Open House Coffee Morning

 

     

 

Sun

19

10.30 am

Service led by Mark Johnson

Wed       

22

8.00 pm

On-line Prayer Meeting with Broxbourne and Cheshunt Churches                             

Thurs     

23          

10.00 am          

Open House Coffee Morning

Sat

25

All day

Town Event – awareness of Climate Change – see magazine article

 

     

 

Sun

26

10.30 am

 

Morning Worship led by Prof Jerry Forrester – Hertford Baptist Church

Mon

27

2.30 pm

7.30 pm

Foodbank Management Committee Meeting in Church

URC Local Area Group Meeting – on line

Wed

29

8.00 pm

On-line Prayer Meeting with Broxbourne and Cheshunt Churches

Thurs

30

10.00 am

Open House Coffee Morning

       

OCT

Fri

1

8.00 pm

Hertford & District Churches Together

Civic Service to Celebrate Hertford & Ware Street Pastors – Hertford Baptist Church

 

Hertford & District Foodbank is open every Monday, Wednesday and Friday and Saturday morning between 10.00 and 11.00

for Clients to pick up pre-arranged Food parcels.

Sorting and preparation of parcels is done on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

Any queries please contact 07851 708470