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Letter from the Elders for July and August

Dear Friends,

It is the treasurer’s turn to pen the letter from the Elders this month and I remember Sandy Gall’s early autobiography; the title of which was based on what his bosses kept saying when he was shipped to another of the world’s trouble spots – “Don’t worry about the money now”. So instead, I will worry about the fact that it is June as I write and may well be July by the time you read. Where has the year gone!

A business will often think about its resources of which money is but one, others include buildings, plant machinery, reputation and good name of the business, the people employed by the organisation and others. Whilst to compare a church to a business is to ask for trouble, there are similarities and certainly both have very similar resources

June was the start of a new theme of “Community” for our Sunday services. Community is an interesting word, much used by the media, often glibly, to group together people who share an attribute that can be easily used to define them whether or not the people themselves would group themselves together in such a manner. What we often forget about community is that not only can you ‘belong’ to more than one community, none of them are static either. Often when we at St John’s talk about (the) community we mean the Knoll or wider area. We can sometimes forget that we are ourselves a collection of communities or groups and whether or not we realise, Our Lord is with us in all these – Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”

The communities of St John’s are not the same as they were 12 months or so ago when we started on our current journey. New or changed teams have appeared, we have said goodbye to dear friends, strangers have arrived to become new friends. Folk have taken on new challenges and in these they and we have changed and grown. Collectively we have been blessed by those who have led our worship, we have heard stories new and old and the old ones often from a different perspective that would never have occurred were we not on this journey. We are not the same as we were even a month ago and we will be different again by the end of the summer.

For both businesses and church, the growing, sharing, adapting of the most important resource, people, is fundamental. The joy though of being part of a Christian community is that we are all as valued as one another – Romans 12:5 “so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others” and of course 1 Corinthians 12. We all have a role to play in the life of our church, whether that role seems to be big or small to us it is irrelevant, we are all part of the body and we are all needed and sometimes the tiny seed that we sow takes years to bear fruit but bear fruit it does.

Where has the year gone – well some of it of course as gone to getting us to where we are now, in our growing, in our serving of others. Over the summer and into the autumn we will move onto a new phase of our journey. New challenges will appear, there will be new requirements on us, there will be things to do that we hadn’t expected, decisions will have to be made, most importantly we will need to find time for prayer. And prayer is something we can all do. With the last 14 months behind us we know that our community will adapt again and we will resolve whatever we come up against. We know that this is so because we are not a business but a community of believers in our Lord and as I have said “where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”

God’s Blessing to us all


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