Imagine the setting: a wonderful summer day, blue sky and the sun is shining, gorgeous countryside surroundings with lush trees, dazzling lake and immaculate lawn; add to that barbecue, bouncy castles, cream tea, games and of course the most important ingredient of all, the people. Yes, you have guessed it, I am talking about the Summer Celebration and the scene of last year’s event.
As a church, we believe that building family and community is what we are called to do; it goes without saying that the most valuable and important commodity you and I have is each other and this is the very sentiment that Paul echoes in his letter to the Thessalonians:
“For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy.” 1 Thessalonians 2:19-20 NIV
So after a successful one day Summer Celebration last year, we have got another wonderful opportunity to foster the family spirit and to continue to build community together over two days rather than just one, from Saturday 21st July to Sunday 22nd July.
Here is the plan:
2pm Arrival time & set up tents
3pm Camp brief & Cream tea
4pm Optional organised activities
6.30pm Dinner (provided)
7.30-9.30pm Silent disco
All of this for the bargain price of £5.00 for adults & £3.00 for children
8:00am Breakfast for campers
10:30am Sunday Gathering in the Millennium Hall + Testimonies from baptism candidates
11:45am Baptisms by the lake
12:45 Barbecue & lunch
14:00 Games & Bouncy Castle
16:00 End of day
NB: Please bring some money.. ££££ ..for burger/sausage rolls, ice cream and drinks.
As you may recall a group of eight friends from Revelation Family Church went to Mumbai, India last summer. We had an amazing time together exploring one of the most densely populated cities on our planet. One in every 250 people alive today on the planet lives in Mumbai! It is the 5thmost populated city on the planet.
One of the highlights for me during those ten days was spending time in the Malvani District of Mumbai. We got to visit a group of schools educating thousands of children from the slums. Another highlight was joining Covenant Blessing Church for a couple of Sundays to worship during our stay. The church is a truly inspiring place to be.
Pastor Basil and Cathy D’Souza are currently on a break in the UK and we are thrilled that they are very briefly passing through Chichester to say hello. If you wish to meet them we would encourage you to come to our Evening Gathering this Sunday 20thMay, 6.30pm at the Family Centre. They are amazing people living in an amazing place doing amazing things to help people trapped in extreme poverty, and there is no doubt that you will be inspired by them.
This Sunday 13th May 2018 is 'National Walk to Church Sunday.' As followers of Christ there is a strong mandate on us all to care for our beautiful God-given environment that we live in. Maybe you walk occasionally or maybe you have never tried it before. Either way our challenge to you is to give it a go this Sunday at the morning or evening gathering. At this stage we are also able to offer lovely weather! It will be 14 degrees with sunny intervals. If you are travelling from further a field to join us maybe you could 'park and stride’ the last mile.
In June 2016 after many months of prayer & preparation, Joel, Joelle, Micah & Asher gave up everything and set off for Hong Kong to follow God’s calling on their lives to work with the poor & needy. They arrived at St Stephens, a charity set up by Jackie Pullinger over 50 years ago and were very quickly trained up and helping to make a difference in the lives of addicts beginning to see them set free through faith in Jesus Christ. The first few months were a steep learning curve helping with an intense programme designed to bring healing and release from the bondage of addiction. This not only stretched them in their faith, but also practically as they got used to the long hours, the intense heat, and sharing a small living space with the boys sleeping together in a room for the first time!
Joel and Joelle were able, in their time at St Stephen's, to invest into the guys (mostly recovering addicts, known on site as ‘brothers’) who lived there, seeing them change as they experience physical & spiritual healing through the power of God and also how God’s love can truly transform lives. Through all this they have grown so much both practically and spiritually and Joel has even had the chance to become an experienced worship leader in Cantonese!
Towards the end of last year it become increasingly clear that Micah and Asher’s needs for schooling and good friendships were not being met in Hong Kong and so the decision to return to the UK was made and they returned in the middle of March. In this next season of their lives they will be staying with family in Croydon and are now looking forward to working through how to live out the things they have learned in Asia back home in England.
They are very grateful to everyone who has supported them in so many different ways and would ask that you please continue to pray for them for:
Jelinda Immaculate Akello
Many of you will remember having the Watoto choir come to visit a few years ago (and their previous visits too). Watoto is a family of people from all over the world who are working together to ensure that the forgotten have a place to belong. Watoto has placed thousands of orphans in families, empowered vulnerable women to reach their communities, rescued babies and former child soldiers, and sent children’s choirs across six continents. They have always been a huge blessing to us as a church as we have had the pleasure of hosting the choir in our homes and watching their vibrant and inspiring performances.
As a church we sponsor one of the "aunties" from Watoto who helps to look after the children in the Watoto village. Her name is Jelinda Immaculate Akello. Jelinda is 34 years old and describes herself as being passionate about serving God. Our financial support is enabling her to nurture the children who are placed in her care. As well as offering this sponsorship we want to be committed to praying for Jelinda as a whole church family and we will also be sending her letters to build our relationship and to show her that she is known and remembered by us.
We are launching the Marriage Course (www.themarriagecourses.org) at Revelation Family Church once more after Easter. The internationally renowned course will be hosted and facilitated for us by Pam and Malc Herrington.
The Marriage Course runs over 7 sessions every other Tuesday through the 2018 Summer Term, starting on 24th April. It is open to any married couple and we want to strongly recommend you do the course if you have not done it before or, equally, for a long while. It is a great way to get some quality input or even run a health check on your marriage.
The course is also suitable for friends and family beyond the church at present. In fact the last few times we have run the course we have always had people join us and really enjoy it.
There is a small fee for the course payable in advance to cover the costs. If you want to attend and can’t afford the fees please do let as know, as we would not want that to stop you.
The Bell Tower is now in it’s fourth year of operation as an after school youth drop-in centre and is now a well established hub in the community for local young people. We have extended our work into local secondary schools, running assemblies and regular lunch time drop-in sessions to connect with those who have not yet made use of the centre.
The wonderful City Angels volunteers continue to go out on the streets in all weathers until the early hours on weekend evenings, helping anyone in need and bringing a calming presence to the city centre streets. The following statistics from January to December 2017 highlight the continued need for their presence:
Total number of people given assistance: 157 (222 including those involved in group fights)
Number of men given assistance: 94
Number of women given assistance: 78
Free drinks served: 1686
Length of time spent supporting individuals: 40+ hours
Number of times 999 called: 11
People found collapsed/unconscious: 10
Number of times CA intervened to stop/prevent escalation of group fights (often with police/door security) back up: 9
Incidences of potential drink spiking: 3+
Incidences when an individual was deemed vulnerable of sexual assault and were supported by CA: 3
As you can see, there is still a huge need for their presence on the streets – what would have happened to the 10 people found collapsed/unconscious, if they hadn’t been found by City Angels? City Angels continue to work closely with Sussex Police and all the door security men and women; as well as liaising with CCTV and working with City and District Councils.
City Angels have also been busy with other events – in January the volunteers celebrated with an end of year party; the following evening several volunteers were present at Chichester cathedral for the churches’ Unity Service – celebrating the work of many such essential voluntary projects run by different churches across the local area.
One night in January the City Angels team received a call on the radio from door security staff that had found a young lady at the back of The Vestry, vomiting and reluctant to move. City Angels took over, allowing the security team to go back to work. On the same night another young lady was found outside The Fountain, also vomiting and unable to walk – City Angels helped her back to the university campus and alerted Student Campus Security who were able to check up on her. City Angels then received a radio call from The Fountain to say that a lady had collapsed in the toilets upstairs, and was semi-conscious and having a seizure. City Angels were able to call her father and support her until her father arrived to take her home.
If you would like to volunteer please contact Lin Roberts admin@cityangels,org.uk
Thank you so much to all the highly committed and hard-working City Angels volunteers!