It has been a strange year at St Augustine’s coping with restrictions from Covid. Having been in Lock down, then opening up cautiously we planned exciting services for the Christmas period, but one by on they were changed and we returned to Zoom services. Our Christmas Nativity service was one of the highlights as the Sunday School leaders cleverly arranged a video piecing together videos e-mailed by the children.
We said a big thank you to our two Sunday School leaders, Catherine and Charlotte, who have engaged children with inspiring sessions for many years. They have decided to concentrate on the older young people in the church. So we are praying for new leadership, although their shoes will be difficult to fill.
As a church we have developed our ‘Mission Statement’ which is being used to guide our way forward. This has been shared and discussed with the congregation:-
‘Led by the Holy Spirit and underpinned by prayer, we seek to share God’s love as shown by the teachings of Jesus.
We aim to be a nurturing church family which offers spiritual growth, varied styles of worship and social interaction for all ages.
As an ecumenical, inclusive and diverse church we aim to show love and support to the wider community and be stewards of God’s creation, working towards a sustainable world’.
In response to this, we have started our journey to become an Eco Church. Also, in order to show God’s love to the wider community, we have begun serving Cream Teas once a month with the idea of getting to know more local people and having a fun, family afternoon. In an effort to care for God’s world, a group of us have formed ‘Springfield Wombles’, and we have fun collecting litter every Wednesday evening.
Like most churches, we are now meeting in the church, after many months of Zooming and while the weather is good, we are meeting outside. We do value the benefits of Zooming, particularly for those who cannot access the church, and so we have an evening service, called ‘Cherish’ on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of each month led by Rev Caroline or Val.
P.C.N [Progressive Christian Network], has continued by Zoom on the 2nd Sunday of each month. Thanks to Jenny Murphy who has been co-ordinating meetings.
When we first started ‘Lock Down’ in the Spring of ’21, we began ‘Pause 4 Prayer’, which became a zoom prayer meeting valued by those of us who took part. We were able to take time out in the middle of the week to pray together and meet with friends. This special time has taken a break during the summer, and hopefully will resume in September.
During Lent, we decided to raise money for Water Aid, and through sponsorship we walked to Jerusalem! We did this by collectively adding the miles we walked in Chelmsford, on a weekly basis, and followed a route through Europe, ending up in Jerusalem on Mother’s Day. It was a great effort with friends and family joining us from London, Ireland, Scotland and even in Haifa in Israel. We raised over £2,000, and some members were awarded blue Water aid shoe laces, or Easter Eggs for fun prizes.
One of our first services back in the Church was a very special ‘First Communion’ for 11 year olds, Imogen and Amelia. We welcomed them onto the next stage of their journey walking and learning about God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. We were able to renew our faith journey , and pray that Jesus will continue to be by our side as we work towards being a light in North Springfield, with God’s help. Pamela Scammell
Read the Whole report from every church in circuit here: