On Sunday June 11th there will be an 8.45am service but no 10.30am service. Yes, you heard right… there will be no 10.30am service. Instead, like last year, the whole church family will be meeting together for a day of fellowship, teaching, worship and fun at Ashington Community Centre. There will be much cake (as is to be expected at a St Matthew’s event), a delicious shared lunch, and, hopefully, good weather so that we can socialise and chat in the summer sun over our lunch. But most importantly, there will be teaching and time to reflect on our theme.
At St Matthew’s, our vision is to “be disciples and make disciples”, and our 2017 verse of the year helps us think about how we can achieve this.
His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them. (Matt 5:1,2)
The job of a disciple is to learn from their teacher, to spend all the time they can in the presence of their teacher, to listen to the wisdom given and learn how to live like their teacher. How often do we sit in Jesus’ presence and really listen to his wisdom? The Away Day in June is an opportunity for us to do just that, and in the good company of our fellow disciples, too.
The Bible tells us that we “have the mind of Christ” (1 Cor. 2:16). We know that Jesus kept his mind sharp by studying the scriptures so that he could interpret them for others (Luke 4:16) and for his own comfort and strength (Matt 4:1-11). He also spent time away from the crowds listening to God the Father (Luke 5:16, Mark 1:35, Luke 22:42,43). How can we listen to Jesus, our teacher? On Sunday 11th June we will use Mark’s Gospel to think about just those things.
As last year, the day will take place at Ashington Community Centre in Ashington (!), which is just off the A24, north of the Washington roundabout. Please ask for a map if you’re not sure where it is. Also, we will hopefully put signs out. If you don’t have transport, please indicate on the sign-up sheet and we will make sure you can get a lift. Similarly, if you have space in your car, please could you add this to the same sheet.
As this is St. Matthew’s, there will be plenty to eat and drink during the day. Coffee/tea and pastries, cake and a shared picnic lunch. Please sign up for food contributions on the sheet at the back. God willing, the sun will shine on us, so bring a rug or some picnic chairs, and garden games, if you have any, so we can have some fun (watching or taking part) after lunch.
The day is shaping up to be a practical, challenging and encouraging day for all the church family (seasoned scholars as well as spiritual seekers!). Please come along, even if only for part of the day. As the advertising says, “Bring your yourself, bring your Bible, bring your family, bring your house group, and bring your ears”.
Rev. Sara-Jane, Al & Su Pitcher and the team