Frodsham Methodist Church in the Chronicle
In case you missed it, Frodsham Methodist Church appeared in the Chronicle newspaper twice this December:
Frodsham children spread the Christmas spirit with gift appeal
Frodsham church holds exhibition for Christmas
Discover a vulnerable God this Christmas
In his Christmas message, the Rev'd. Dr Mark Wakelin, President of the Methodist Conference, urges people to discover a "vulnerable God" in Jesus this festive season.
The full text of the message follows:
"Truly this was the Son of God!
"I was asked once by a well-known broadcaster, ‘do you believe that Jesus is the Son of God?’ I replied, as you do, by asking him, ‘it depends on what you mean by, ‘Son of God.’ His reply shook me because he then said, ‘It’s a perfectly simple question, ‘Is Jesus Christ the Son of God?' My own thought was immediately, ‘I wonder which bit of ‘Son of God’ he is finding simple?'
"I presume he meant do I believe in a literal way? But that is hardly simple. Literal language is OK for baked beans and possibly sunsets, but it gets a bit thin when talking about most of the things that really matter such as love, sadness and wonder. It runs out of steam totally when talking of God. You can’t say anything literal about God!
"I was once in an argument about the new hymn book (I am afraid I get a bit grumpy about some of the alterations to ancient poems that we make and think that our desire to modernise the old is a little like the Christians who wanted to cover the modesty of the paintings in the Sistine Chapel). My colleague disliked the word ‘ineffable’ because he felt no one would understand it. There is a certain irony in that as you can imagine! Given that ‘ineffable’ basically means something we can’t understand, I would have thought it was a useful word to hang on to if we also want to talk about God. God is ‘ineffable’ – and that’s the point.
"That’s the point of Christmas. How does God communicate with us when words are not adequate? How can we even try to talk of God when literal language so lets us down? God’s answer is, of course, the ‘self sending’ – of a God who in Charles Wesley’s words is, ‘contracted to a span, incomprehensibly made man.’ What we can ever understand of God has to begin by taking account of God revealed in the person of Jesus Christ. Who is written about in Colossians 1:15: ‘He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation’ and verse 19: ‘For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell.’
"The ‘Word’ is God, says John. Now this isn’t simple language either, but it directs you a kind of struggle to understand that is different from, for example, trying to get your head around Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity! Because it is truth revealed and held in a person, understanding and engaging with that truth is as much about love and obedience as it is about intellectual capacity and linguistic dexterity. We are not so much asked to assent to a philosophical or religious claim, ‘yes I agree that Jesus is the Son of God,’ but inhabit a story, the Christmas story, to live within ancient tale of human struggle and courage, of wonder and delight, of mystery and of angels declaring good news. Children get this much more easily than adults who want the whys and the wherefores of an extraordinary story which is far more than an odd biological claim on the Universe.
"Do I believe that Jesus is the Son of God? Of course, wonder of wonders, ‘Let earth and heaven combine, angels and men agree, to praise in songs divine the incarnate deity.’ I inhabit this ancient story and find it to be true. Wrapped in our clay we may not immediately recognise the creator of all things. But it is our life task, to discover a vulnerable God who is on a mission to finish the ‘new creation’ and is looking for followers.
Frodsham Methodist Church was full this evening, Sunday 23rd December, for a wonderful Candlelight Carol Service led by Rev'd. Denise Harding and members of the Church.
All are invited for a service of Holy Communion on Christmas Eve and a family celebration on Christmas morning.
Wishing everyone who visits our website a joyous Christmas and a peaceful New Year.
Eighteen members of the Church went out spreading the Christmas message in carols and song on Thursday 20th December. The weather was appalling but did not dampen our spirits as we visited the local residential and nursing homes in Frodsham, starting at the MHA Chapelfields, then Hillcrest with the "grand finale" at Newton Hall. We were made very welcome at all three, which between them are home to quite a number of Frodsham Methodists in their mature years. Many residents joined in with our singing whilst others were content to listen and hopefully enjoy. Rev'd. Denise added Christmas stories and concluded each visit with a short prayer, after which we were generously provided with light festive refreshments.
The picture shows our happy band, accompanied by Harry Leather on accordion, at Hillcrest.
Reverend Denise Harding would like to wish all members and friends of Frodsham Methodist Church a joyful Christmas, and God's blessings for 2013.
Many thanks for your welcome and friendship in these first few months, both to myself and to my mum Janet too. I am looking forward to celebrating Christmas and to welcoming in a New Year in a lovely part of God's Kingdom with you all.
Women's Fellowship Christmas Party
An Exhibition of Art, Craft and Photography opened on Friday 30th November running until Sunday 1st December at Frodsham Methodist Church.
The event was organised by Alun Evans, a well known local artist himself, and attracted over 220 entries from over 80 exhibitors from as far afield as Warrington, Chester and Northwich. Although most of the exhibitors were amateur artists, the standard of entries in both artistic skill and presentation was very high. Entries included Paintings in oils, watercolour and mixed media, Photographs as well as Stitchcraft, Patchwork and Quilting. Viewing the exhibition was a feast of colour, texture and form to stimulate the senses and lift the spirits.
The exhibition was opened at 2pm on Friday when our Minister, Rev'd. Denise Harding, welcomed Weaver Vale M.P. Graham Evans who, after a short address in which he said he felt honoured to be asked, declared the event formally open. He then handed over to a group of children from Frodsham C. of E. Primary School who, under the direction of their teacher, Mrs Corradine, entertained us with singing and mime. It was a pleasure to listen to the children's singing talents amid the wonderful artistic skills on display around us.
News & Notices
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