HERTFORD

UNITED REFORMED CHURCH

Hertford URC

 

345th Anniversary year

 

JULY & AUGUST 2018

 

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             REV DAVID BRADBURN

                                      6 Tudor Rise

                               Broxbourne EN10 7HB      Tel: 01992 443218

SUNDAY WORSHIP

10.30 am                Family Worship, followed by coffee/tea

                               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

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

 

          The Minister’s day-off is Tuesday.   Please contact your Elder for urgent pastoral needs on that day

The diary is at the end of this magazine

 

Davids head


Dear Friends,

 

The summer gives many people the opportunity for a break from their normal routines with holidays to different parts of the country or world. Perhaps one day it will be different parts of the universe: what a thought!! It is as far-fetched a thought as the travel we undertake so easily was to our great grandparents. 100 years ago many people hardly ever went out of the village in which they were born. Others, of course, were more adventurous and went to another village, or city, or even country.

In the BBC News front page on the day I’m writing this letter was mention of two Victorian ladies who travelled to Sinai and found some incredibly important documents now held in Cambridge University library. They travelled widely, but for the most part were scorned by their local people.

How do we look on others who break out of the social norms to do unusual things? Probably with a laissez- faire attitude that says ‘I don’t really care what they do’. But what’s our attitude when we realise people have far-fetched thoughts – new ideas that would break the social mould as we know it, would take us out of our comfort zone and flag up a world order we don’t want? That might not be understood so lightly.

Such is the vehemence engendered by ‘far-fetched thinking’ that the thinker could be at best ridiculed and at worst murdered. Rushdie, Solzhenitsyn and others were exiled; Martin Luther King, Archbishop Romero and others assassinated; countless people have been physically attacked for their views, and that’s without going back further than our own lives. Rummage through the realms of history and every age has its radical thinking people who met a violent end; not least, of course, was our Lord Jesus, the Christ. Many who came after him have suffered loss of life or limb because they held the same values as he did, values based on love and worth, not on status and wealth.

Somehow these still seem to be far-fetched thoughts. Humankind has not progressed far enough in 2000 years to make that revolution a reality. Newton’s third law of motion (to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction) seems to apply to ethics as much physics. The more we try to get things right the harder it becomes. There is a force of evil holding humankind back from progress. It is, I think, a two letter word each of us has to come to terms with, conquer and remain master over. It is at the root of so much of the world’s pain and hardship, it is at the root of not having enough resources to ensure everyone is housed and fed, and has reasonable access to education and healthcare, it is at the root of so much violence from moped-muggers to the Syrian conflict. To cope with it we must put not only our mind but also our heart and soul into mastering it.

The word? Ponder, and you will find it.

May your summer be a good one,

 

 

   

 davids

 

     

 

HERTFORD UNITED REFORMED CHURCH

2018 DATES

 

CHURCH MEETINGS – SUNDAYS

16 September,  4 November

 

ELDERS’ MEETINGS – THURSDAYS

13 September,  11 October,  8 November,  13 December

 

 

 

Area Retreat Day led by Jill Nugent on Thursday 7 June at Watton at Stone Methodist Church.

Approximately 20 people attended from Broxbourne, Hertford & Cheshunt Churches.

After a short time of worship, Jill began our journey of discovery about all the things we didn’t know about Church development, design and contents. As a taster, Jill showed us the footprints of well-known Cathedrals for us to guess where they were. David talked about how we can read the theology of a church by its furniture.   There were lots of very interesting details that emerged during the morning - for instance what were the origins of communion rail, not as many of us supposed to keep the sanctuary unobtainable or make it a more holy area. It was to keep the cattle in place – this of course was when churches were used as a refuge and a shelter in challenging times.

We were then introduced to Lindsay Jones. A retired Architect who specialized in development of Church design from the Byzantine Church origins to the Roman Court and who has a great knowledge of Church buildings historic and modern. The talk introduced us to how Cathedrals grew, for example we looked at the history and the development of St. Albans Abbey over the many years of its history. It was so interesting to hear of the many experiences and stories Lindsay had to tell us.

An hour and a half soon went by and then we were able to enjoy the usual delicious lunch provided by Fahim and Sally. Although quite a few people had unavoidable engagements in the afternoon, a good number stayed to spend the next hour relaxing, drawing, making models of churches with wooden bricks, making clay models or just looking through some interesting books that Jill had brought along about Cathedrals and Church Architecture. Most of all it was a good time to enjoy a chat. A short time of worship ended the afternoon at 3.00 pm.

I am sure there will be another opportunity next year to enjoy another informative and relaxing day – look out for next year’s date.

 

 

 

From Jan

Mindfulness

Simple formula for living

 

Live beneath your means.

Return everything you borrow.

Stop blaming other people.

Admit it when you make a mistake.

Give clothes not worn to charity.

Do something nice and try not to get caught

Listen more, talk less.

Every day take a thirty minute walk.

Strive for excellence, not perfection.

Be on time. Don’t make excuses.

Don’t argue. Get organized.

Be kind to unkind people.

Let someone push ahead of you in line,

Take time to be alone.

Cultivate good manners

Be humble.

Realize and accept that life isn’t fair.

Know when to keep your mouth shut.

Go an entire day without criticizing anyone.

Learn from the past. Plan for the future.

Live in the present.

Don’t worry over the small stuff.

It’s all small stuff.

 

 

Hot Potato Lunch

(3rd Thursday every month)

Our first Lunch was held on Thursday 18th January.  Several of the Fellowship also enjoyed jacket potatoes, beans and cheese and we were glad to welcome one visitor. 

The whole point of this lunch is to welcome those who might feel a bit lonely or isolated and encourage them to join with us as a group of welcoming and understanding people.   

We look forward to the number of visitors growing in the near future.  The next lunch is on Thursday 17th May from 12 noon to 2.00 pm in the Church Vestibule, all are welcome.

 

The Rev Paul Hardingham considers the problem of plastic from a Christian point of view.

 

The recent Blue Planet II series exposed just how much plastic waste is an issue in our seas. The Prime Minister has called plastic waste‘one of the great environmental scourges of our time.’The best estimates suggest 10 million tonnes of plastic ends up in our oceans, contaminating and killing sea life. How should we view this issue from a Christian perspective?

When God created the universe, He saw‘everything He had made, and indeed, it was very good.’ (Genesis 1:31). He calls us to share in His care of creation:‘Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves on the ground.’(Genesis 1:28). Ourruleover living creatures is not an excuse to exploit them in a selfish way. As those who made in the image of God, we are entrusted to care for them with responsibility and trustworthiness.

Why do the sea creatures being killed by plastic matter? Because of human rebellion against God (see Genesis 3), our relationship with God and His creation was damaged. No longer do we live with living creatures in harmony and interdependence. Yet after the flood, when Noah rescued the animals in the ark, they are included in God’s everlasting promise to protect the earth:‘I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you, and with every living creature that was with you.’(Genesis 9:9,10).

What is our response to be? Where is God calling us, as His people in this time and place, to make a stand in protecting His creation? Time for a plastic revolution?

 

 Sponsored Bike n Hike

Churches of all denominations will be open on 8 September 2018 ready to receive walkers and cyclists, offering a rare opportunity to visit as well as a fun day out for those taking part. Our Church will be open as usual to receive guests.

 

Please speak to Cheryl if you can help as she needs people to be at the church to welcome visitors.

                                                   

Street Pastors

Greetings to all Churches in Hertford and Ware,

Good News

Street Pastors will be continuing their work patrolling the streets of Ware and Hertford in the near future.

After ten amazing years, our team of trustees have now closed the business side and stepped down from their roles.  A new team is being formed to reconstitute the group under the auspices of the Hertford Community Church. A management team is being formed and a new license agreement will be signed with Ascension Trust. We envisage the new organisation will recommence patrols in early June of this year. To launch this new adventure there will be a special commissioning service, for both the new and existing Street Pastors, and everyone will be invited to this celebration.

A big thank you to all the churches that have continued to donate money to the work of Street Pastors. When we launch we estimate that we will have 60% of the first years budget in the bank. So far, around £3000 has been promised, but ideally, the money is essential for many purposes, including training for existing and new Street Pastors, insurance, safeguarding, uniforms and consumable items used on patrol.

As experienced Street Pastors, we testify to the essential and rewarding work that we do. Yes, it may be cold, it may be raining and a late evening, but the rewards far outweigh any unfavourable conditions. The conversations we have, and the trust we have built up over time with both partygoers and employers and employees, make it all worthwhile.  So many times, people have come up to us and said, thank you, you saved me, or you saved my friend, my daughter or son. We saved them in a hundred different ways. Therefore, we do what we do and need to continue.

What do we still need?

Although we have a few that have volunteered to train as Street Pastors, we still need more volunteers to run effectively. The more Street Pastors we have, the more weekends we can do. Also, everything we do is through prayer, so we need more Prayer Pastors too.   And of course, we need continued financial support.

A Street Pastor is a carer, not a preacher; we witness our faith by our actions, not by what we say. As Jesus said in the parable of the Good Samaritan, “Go and do likewise.”

We thank you again for your support and prayers

Yours in His service,

Heather Ross, Brett Sutherland and Rick Hartwig 8th April 2018

 

 

 

Inner peace

If you can start the day without caffeine,
If you can always be cheerful, ignoring aches and pains,
If you can resist complaining and boring people with your troubles,
If you can eat the same food every day and be grateful for it,
If you can understand when your loved ones are too busy to give you any time,
If you can take criticism and blame without resentment ,
If you can conquer tension without medical help,
If you can relax without wine,
If you can sleep without the aid of drugs,
…..then you are probably the family dog.


             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

 

 

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.

 

 

 

The Windrush Generation at worship

The significant impact of the so-called “Windrush Generation” (those arriving in the UK between 1948 and 1971 from Caribbean countries of Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and other islands) and other Commonwealth nationals from Africa, India and Pakistan has played a major role in shaping and creating modern Britain.  (The phrase is a reference to the ship MV EmpireWindrush, which arrived at Tilbury Docks, Essex, on 22ndJune 1948, bringing workers to the UK as a response to our post-war labour shortages.  The ship carried 492 passengers, many of them children.)

But what kind of Christian impact has the Windrush Generation made?  Usually called Black-Majority Churches (BMCs), there are probably at least 75 different BMC denominations in the UK in 2018, totalling at least 4,200 churches, and some, like Dr Joe Aldred and Dr Babatunde Adedibu, would say that there could be 8,000 churches in 400 denominations!  The largest of the 75 Pentecostal churches (not all necessarily BMC), given inUK Church Statistics, include:

Redeemed Christian Church of God (68,000); Elim Pentecostal Church (68,000); Assemblies of God (49,000); New Testament Church of God and Associated churches (16,000); Hillsong (14,000); Kingsway International Christian Centre [KICC] (12,000 in Chatham alone).

 

 

Church Garden July 18

Thank you to our gardeners Sue and Mike

for Making the

 Church look so attractive and welcoming

 

 

  

 

 Magazine Jly Aug 18

 

 

 

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 will be available on Easter Sunday 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.

 

The Oldest Bible comes back to the UK

 

The world’s oldest surviving complete Latin Bible returns to the UK this autumn. It left these shores for Rome 1302 years ago, when monks in the northeast of England sent it as a gift to Pope Gregory II.

The Codex Amiatinus was one of only three produced at the twin monasteries of Wearmouth and Jarrow. (One has since got lost, and the other survives in fragments.) It was kept safe for centuries at the Abbey of the Saviour in Monte Amiata, in Tuscany. Then in the 18th century it was sent to the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, in Florence.
It is the Laurenziana which has now agreed to send it back to the UK, alongside the Lindisfarne Gospels, for its exhibition ‘Anglo-Saxon Kingdoms’, which begins in October.


The Bible is 12 inches thick, and weighs 35kg. It contains both Old and New Testaments, and was written on 1030 leaves made from the skins of at least 515 sheep. It has been called one
of the greatest treasures of Anglo-Saxon times.

 

 

 

 

Jeans instead of vestments?

Have you noticed any local clergy dressing more informally in recent months? If so, there is a good reason for it: C of E clergy were given the go-ahead last year to choose whether or not to disregard their robes, and dress down for services, after a vote by General Synod.

That means that if the vicar wants to wear jeans when leading a service, the Church of England will no longer object. It is believed by some that such a change can help the Church by ‘reflecting the way society has gone in the way of informality’, according to one vicar.

 

Is ‘religious karaoke’ growing in popularity?

It seems that churches across the country are increasingly ditching their hymnbooks, in favour of using big screens to project the words. Some churches have spent up to £50,000 on audio-visual systems including projector screens and LCD TVs for their flock. Many churches reckon that it is cheaper to subscribe to a licensing service which allows them to project the words to hymns and worship songs, rather than buying books.  

Christian Copyright Licensing International currently sells churches licenses, which allows them to reproduce hymns and worship songs. It currently covers about 24,500 sites in the UK. The most recent figures suggest that in 2013, there were 50,660 churches in the UK.

 

 

 

China opens its arms to the Bible – with 30 years help from Bible Society

Just over 40 years ago, the Bible was a banned book in China. But today, in this largely atheist country, the Bible is a best seller. In China today, you will find churches so full that their congregants spill out on the pavement. Those in rural areas often walk for hours just to attend a service, while more and more city-dwellers can be found in churches – both underground and state-run – on a Sunday morning.

What’s more, copies of the Bible – once a banned book in China – are now within reach through local churches and specially-licensed bookshops. And those Bibles are desperately needed. As one Chinese Christian explains: 'The fire of revival has been burning in China for 30 years. But if we want it to keep burning, we need to feed it with God’s word.'

It’s a remarkable story. And over the last 30 years, the Bible Society has been at the heart of it. Over decades, through working with the registered Church, they have carved out a unique ministry in China. For it was back in 1987, in response to requests from Chinese church leaders, that Bible Society helped to establish the Amity Printing Company. In 2008, it moved to a larger, upgraded facility, the size of 12 football pitches and with the capacity to print 20 million Bibles a year. It’s now the world’s biggest Bible printing factory!

Bible Society is still hard at work, printing and distributing Bibles across the country, helping to strengthen the roots of the Chinese Church, and to help new believers grow into mature followers of Jesus.

Here are just some of the numbers that describe the Bible Society’s work in China:
68 million Chinese Bibles printed from its press since 1987.
55,000 local churches with whom it is connected.
77 distribution centres from which it bases itself.
48 Bible vans taking Bibles wherever they need to go

 

                          

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.

 

 

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CHURCH DIARY FOR 

JULY & AUGUST 2018

            

 

JULY/AUGUST 2018

 

Sun

1

10.30 am

Morning Worship led by Rev. David Bradburn with Holy Communion.  Incorporating the Annual Church Meeting

Thurs 5

10.00 am

12.15 pm

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00 am

Fabric Committee Meeting

Sun

8

10.30 am

Morning Worship led by Geoffrey Williams, Hertford Baptist Church

Thurs

12

10.00 am

4.00 pm

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00

Elders’ Meeting

Sun

15

10.30 am

12.30 pm

Morning Worship led by Margaret Colville

Local Area Lunch at the Highland Broxbourne

Wed 18 8.00 pm URC Local Area Group Meeting at Hertford
Thurs 19

10.00 am

12.00 pm

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00.

Hot Potato Lunch in the Vestibule

Sun

22

10.30 am

6.30 pm

Morning Worship led Revd. David Bradburn

H&DCT Taize Service, St. Leonard’s Church, Bengeo

Thurs 26

10.00 am

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00 am

Sun

29

10.30 am

Morning Worship led by Christine Hall

AUG

Thurs

2

10.00 am

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00 am

Sun

5

10.30 am

Morning Worship with Holy Communion

Led by Rev. David Bradburn

Thurs 9 10.00 am

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00 am

Sun

12

10.30 am

Morning Worship led by Ian Matthews

Thurs 16

10.00 am

12.00 pm

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00 am

Hot Potato Lunch

Sun

19

10.30 am

Morning Worship led by Margaret Colville

Thurs 23 10.00 am

Open House in Vestibule with time of reflection and prayer at 11.00

Sun

26

10.30 am

Morning Worship led by Richard West

Thurs 30 10.00 am

Open House in Vestibule with time for reflection and prayer

 

 

 

Hertford & District Foodbank is open every weekday from

4.00 pm to 5.00 pm.  For queries please contact 07851 708470 or Cheryl or Fran