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Stronger Together

I had great fun preaching 'at home' at Willesborough last week, taking one of my nerdy fascinations (the Revised Common Lectionary) as a point of interest as we continued our early steps through Mark's Gospel in Year B. 

I pointed out that, thanks to the wonder that is the lectionary, this reading was in line with that being heard by Christians that same morning in all the Church of England and indeed much of the Anglican Communion, as well as by Protestants and Catholics of other denominations from around the globe.  Reflecting on such all too small, but nevertheless weighty, areas of Christian unity is always worth a moment. And it seems to me that it is particularly worth thinking a little about it at this time of year.

For one thing, if we can as Christians manage to read the same Gospel reading pretty much all around the world each Sunday, then surely there has to be more we can do together?  I am always heartened by the joint work that we see at Ignite in St. Mary's, Ashford Town Centre - we currently have representatives from Bright City, the Baptists, and Pneuma churches; we work closely with Bright City and Gateway, and we have Christians from other churches joining us with their work hats on from Housing, Community Safety, the Forward Trust and other agencies. 

Christians working together through the power of the Holy Spirit, guided by the Word of God - whether locally or globally - will always achieve amazing things.  And as we begin this new church year, we look forward together to the coming of the one thing we can all, surely, agree on without dissent - Jesus Christ our Lord! Our rejoicing will only be complete when we all rejoice together.

Looking forward beyond Christmas, we will find ourselves again in the annual celebration of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.  For 2024 we will be planning a celebration in St. Mary's, Ashford Town Centre.  We will host the Churches Together in Ashford praise and prayer event on 21 January with a prayer focus around reconciliation and unity, looking both at what is happening in the world and also at the growing cultural and ethnic diversity of the church here in Ashford and how we can be a sign of reconciliation and unity to the world around us.

Do get in touch if you would like to be involved - more details will follow shortly.  And do come and join in our prayers - we are stronger together.

With warmest wishes, The Revd Teena Twelves

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