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"Dear friends since God so loved us,
we also ought to love one another"
1 John 4:11





News from around the Diocese and Benefice,
Projects, Reviews & Cartoons


Garden Praise!

Sunday 30th July

The church in Kemble presents a fun day of Christian Praise, BBQ and Games with something for all the family.



Starting with a special service at 10.00 a.m. in the garden at
The Old Forge, Church Road
Games, Tennis, Swimming and a BBQ lunch.
All are Welcome!

Ride and Stride by car? Bike against brick wall.
Saturday 9
th September


This year the annual Ride and Stride can be done by car, as well as all the usual forms of getting around the countryside, cycling, walking, running and horse riding. We have met a mobility scooter at Shorncote, but do not recommend this, except in town!


Ride and stride is the main fundraising event of the local charity Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust. Last year the trust received almost £50,000, the highest ever. The trust gave out £130,000 in grants last year to churches of all denominations, and intends to better that this year. Ride and Stride also returns half of the sponsorship money directly to your church.


The event takes place on Saturday 9th September, which is also National Heritage Open Day. Two good reasons to open and show off your church to the world. We are looking for people who are willing to collect sponsor money from their friends and neighbours, and then take a trip around the churches of their choice. All churches throughout the Nation can be visited. You can do as many or as few as you like.


Teenagers of all ages, note: there are prizes for visiting the most churches and collecting the most money!


We are also looking for people to be at each church to welcome visitors. You too can be sponsored for your time and effort.


Do contact your local organiser if you are willing to take part. If you do not have one, contact ride-and-stride@ghct.org.uk , or me for help.


Peter Watkins, local organiser for All Saints, Somerford Keynes and Shorncote.

01285 861614, peter@waterford.plus.com

A magazine for rural ChristiansCountry Ways Magazine Cover

Some countryside magazines seem to be written for urban people contemplating the rural dream. But Country Way is about real people in the real countryside, and the inspiring Christian work that is going on there.

You will find Country Way of interest if you enjoy stories of farming, the rural church, the environment and rural communities; as well as thoughts and reflections, and information on Christian resources and events. It comes out three times per year (January, June and October). The managing editor, Canon Dr Jill Hopkinson, is the National Rural Officer for the Church of England.

More details: http://countryway.org.uk/






Christian Resources Exhibition logo

CRE goes back to Sandown

Under new management that looks very familiar, the Christian Resources Exhibition will return to Sandown Park in Surrey next year (October 17-19, 2017). The largest annual exhibition of its kind in Europe, CRE is now owned by Stephen Goddard, its media consultant for more than 25 years.

‘In May, the Bible Society decided to focus on its core mission of offering the Bible to the world and purposed to find a new home for CRE or close it down,’ said Goddard. ‘The event has served thousands of churches for more than three decades and is still a strategic event in the ecclesiastical calendar. I have therefore pulled together a team with vast experience of running the exhibition successfully.’

‘We are working hard to put together an exhibition which builds on the experience of the past yet will present new ideas, products and suppliers to church leaders and members.’ There are tentative plans to take CRE back to regional cities. Since 1985 it has been held in places afar apart as Exeter and Edinburgh, Belfast and Bristol.




The Nation’s Favourite Bible Stories

Bible Society, £7.99

So many Bible stories are part of our culture, education and literature and now, following a nationwide poll, the favourite best-loved stories, passages and verses are brought together in this unique collection.

The story of Noah, the nativity, the last supper, Samson and Delilah and other favourite Bible stories can be enjoyed as they were originally intended in the words of the Bible. Accompanying the passages are interesting facts and statistics as well as contributions from The Rt Hon David Cameron MP, Cardinal Vincent Nichols and Most Revd Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury.

Read an old favourite or discover a new gem in The Nation’s Favourite Bible Stories.


Moments of Grace: Reflections on meeting with God

By Joy MacCormick, Bible Society, £6.99

From desolation to celebration, loneliness to love, Moments of Grace offers pithy, thought-provoking reflections on themes connecting God, faith and the journey of life. Questions for further pondering help the reader make links between head and heart, between what they believe, what they wrestle with believing and what they experience day by day.

Joy MacCormick has written this book to help people have a closer encounter with God in prayer, especially those who may struggle to find a place in conventional church worship. She says: 'One of my most powerful motivations in ministry has been, and still is, "seeing the lights come on in people's eyes" as they discover new ways of thinking about and relating to the Holy, and the impact this has on their experience of "life in all its fullness".'


Cycling Out of the Comfort Zone: Two boys, two bikes, one unforgettable mission

by Charles Guilhamon , SPCK, £9.99

A fast-paced travel narrative that vividly conveys the freshness of the Christian faith and the excitement of being on a gap year.

Just out of university, Charles Guilhamon and his friend Gabriel de Lépinau decide to take a year out to tour the world by bike. With a budget of a few euros a day, their travels bring them out of their comfort zone and into contact with people living in isolated or persecuted Christian communities in Syria, Iraq, India, China (Tibet), Thailand, the Amazon (Brazil), Senegal and Algeria.

With a delightfully ironic sense of humour, Guilhamon’s vivid storytelling, intelligent analysis and authentic testimonies make for a hugely enjoyable read. In the best tradition of the travelogue, this is a true story well told. Cycling Out of the Comfort Zone concludes with an Afterword on recent developments in Syria and Iraq.


The Hum of Angels - Listening for the Messengers of God Around Us

By Scot McKnight, Monarch, £9.99

Would you recognise an angel if you saw one? The majority of earth’s inhabitants believe in Angels. Yet so few of us can claim to have seen one. Why? Perhaps it’s because in order to encounter one, we first have to learn what to look for, and how to look! We live in a world where the natural and supernatural overlap.

Angels are constantly on mission from God, and constantly at work in this world. From the Garden of Eden to the Book of Revelation, Scripture is filled with hundreds of references to these wondrous creatures. In this creative work, Scot McKnight explores what the Bible says – and doesn’t say – about these majestic beings.

And that’s deeply important, because angels are still on mission today. They express God’s love, confirm His presence, and even lead humans in redemptive worship. Don’t just believe in angels. Learn how to recognise these messengers of God that are all around us and know how God might be using them to affect our lives.


I Married a Soldier

Brenda Hale had been married for 22 years when her husband, Mark, was killed in Afghanistan. He was the longest serving soldier to be killed in action.

Describing the shock, grief and huge financial problems Brenda faced immediately after Mark’s sudden death, I married a Soldier shows how her determination to fight for the rights of her two daughters and to take on the Ministry of Defense. She reveals the suffering of a bereaved forces family and looks at how she found a way through an event that threatened to crush her, by drawing on her faith and on a personal strength she didn’t know she had. It shows the personal cost of war, and the need for support for those affected.

Brenda’s determination to fight for the rights of families affected by death in action led her into politics as a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly. This is a story of heroism, love and loss, grief and isolation, but also of faith and hope.


For Peace and For Good - A History of the Community of St. Francis

By Helen Stanton, Canterbury Press, £19.99

For Peace and For Good is the history of the influential Anglican religious order, the Community of St Francis. Written with the full co-operation of the community, it sets their story against the wider backdrop of the lives of St Clare and St Francis, and the extraordinary surge of women's vocations to the religious life during the Catholic revival in the Church of England.

It explores the lives of its founding members, its growth, the various branch houses, and the work and ministries in which they engaged in response to God's call. First-hand accounts by Sisters bring to vivid life the story of a community responding with courage and imagination to the needs, opportunities and challenges of their times. Their stories provide significant insight and inspiration into what Christian discipleship might need to look like in the twenty-first century.


Dare to Trust – choosing a life of risk

By Nathalie MacDermott, LionHudson, £8,99

Combining travelogue with testimony, Nathalie MacDermott shares her life’s adventure with God, offering a compelling memoir set amidst a host of dangerous situations. This is what happens when compassion and courage are allowed to thrive.

From orphanages in former communist states to hard-line Islamic regimes, international humanitarian disasters to corrupt African institutions, Nathalie has come face to face with numerous instances where trusting God is the only option. Told with honesty, and humility, Dare to Trust is an invitation to reconnect with God, to be inspired by His call, to put faith in action, and to renew our commitment to serving Him today.


The Big Bible Sticker Book

By Jan Godfrey, Authentic, £5.99

In the Big Bible Sticker Book, best-loved Bible stories are combined with over 250 stickers to help keep little fingers busy and make the book their own.

31 well loved stories from both the Old and New Testaments are retold for children in this bumper sticker book. Questions and activities involving stickers are then included to help children engage with the story in a way they can understand. The beautiful illustrations throughout provide lots of points of interest for parents to talk through with young children, and help create a sumptuous feel to this book.



Photo used under licence from Fotolia 

Cartoon used by permission of Cartoon Church

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