Today we were looking forward to Christian Aid week with a sermon from Jessica from their Oxford office. It was, I was told, an inspiring piece based on the lectionary reading John 5:1-9 - do we really want a world healed of poverty and hunger? Even if it will cost us? How will we be healed? The man in the Gospel thought he needed to be nearer to the pool, but when healing finally came that was not the answer. Will we be surprised by the ways forward? In carrying his mat he broke the laws of the Sabbath. What laws/traditions/habits must we break to achieve healing.
We used Christian Aid materials in the children's groups too. Abi had brought in some chicks, which of course they were all keen to stroke. The materials were about Ivana whose family were given chicks (among other things) by a Christian Aid partner to help them build a more sustainable, varied farm in their Bolivian rainforest home. The accompanying Forest Foods Forever game was a great hit with Exclaimers (despite initial requests for more sewing!).
After the service we watched a short film on the impact for farmers in Kenya of a scheme to send out localised weather forecasts by text message. Then we had a fantastic delicious (vegetarian) meal together - thank you Ali. All profits from the money raised by the meal will be going to Christian Aid.
Next week we'll be raising more funds for Christian Aid, as well as Readifood, with a clutter sale. Please bring in anything you think someone else in church might be prepared to buy to raise funds!