We do love our Christmas at COTC, from our beautiful Carol service with choir and candles to our 9 course Christmas Meal, or our new tradition of Beer & Carols. We’re still finalising some of the details of our other Christmas programme for this year, but I thought I would get the main events up. Can’t wait.
Our sermons this Autumn will be on the book of 1 Samuel. It is the story of the rise of the greatest King of Israel, and is full of familiar tales. But there is much more going on than the slightly Sunday school feel that many of them have. It is God’s perspective on the nature of leadership, the responsibilities of those in office, and the corrupting effect of power. And as such may just have something to say to our world today.
Our sermons this term have been on the lovely theme of the Fruit of the Spirit. We’ve really enjoyed exploring this theme, I’m struck that we spend so much time saying that Christianity isn’t about being good (and it isn’t) that we forget that God really does transform us little by little into something wonderful.
Human greatness does not lie in wealth or power, but in character and goodness.
And if you would like one, we have made a little commemorative postcard for you to remind you something of what we have learned.
As well as our usual services we will hold our lovely service of Shadows at sunset (7.45pm) on Good Friday. This very simple moving recounting of the final hours of Jesus life in stillness and growing darkness is one of our most memorable events of the year. Be on time.
And for the first time this year we’re joining together with others in the Parish for a Maundy Thursday Seder meal. More information below.
A Prayer for Lent
Father you call us to learn
to trust you in famine as in feast,
and to seek your kingdom before all things.
As we begin this season of Lent
give us joy in the simple things
gratitude for what we have
rather than disquiet over what we don’t.
And may we discover in your presence
a peace that the world cannot give.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Lent is a season in the year of the Church which follows Jesus into the wilderness for 40 days. It is a time of stripping things back and choosing a simpler quieter life, so better to encounter God.
One of the things we will be doing together is reading a book as a Church family. The book for this year is by ++Justin Welby called Dethroning Mammon. It is an examination of the place that money plays in our society, and what it looks like to genuinely trust in God rather than finance. There are 6 chapters, and we plan to read one a week, you can reflect on it in the comments below, or after church each Sunday.
To get hold of a copy obviously you can buy it from Amazon. But given the subject matter it might be a thought to buy it from somewhere that treats its staff better.
If you are near Westminster my favourite bookshop is here.