Monday Evening House Group
Meets: Generally 1st & 3rd Monday of each month in a member’s home at 19:30.
Contact: David Morgan
After a long break we began meeting again in Advent using some of the images from 'The Art of Advent' by Jane Williams to direct our discussions. We have welcomed a couple of new members this year who have added another dimension to the group.
We are now using a Methodist Church publication 'Talking of God Together'. The aim of this study guide is to encourage and equip us to speak comfortably about our experience of God and the Christian faith. The resource included people's stories, Bible passages, questions and activities to increase our confidence and conviction in speaking more openly about our faith.
We try to meet twice a month on Monday evenings at 7.30pm. New members warmly invited! Contact the Morgans for more information and watch the notice sheet for dates.
Wednesday Study Group
Meets: 2nd & 4th Wednesday of each month in the Bradbury Centre at 14:00.
Contact: Rosi MorganBarry
We meet on 2nd & 4th Wednesdays, usually in John or Luke. We are a part of our Vision: nourishing and strengthening people for their spiritual journeys. About a year ago, being an Eco Church, we decided to look at what the Bible says about food, using material provided by the Methodist Relief and Development Fund. It reminded us how well our Creator God provides for us and made us think about the plenty we enjoy in contrast to other's poverty.
Usually we base our studies on the Scripture Union "Lifebuilder" series, which suggest a number of questions to set us thinking: some elementary and some very searching. We tackled a series on Decisions: how best should make them. Obviously they must be in line with God's will but also must take into account the effect they would have on other people. Scripture and prayer will loom large in the process and following this we have just started a series of studies on prayer.
Many prayers are recorded in the Bible and we have been "eavesdropping on some of the most significant prayers in human history". We can think of prayer as conversing with God and getting to know him, but there are so many other dimensions and we have been challenged: to remind ourselves who God is (he is willing and able to answer); to pray intelligently and to consider if we can be part of the answer to our prayers.
Everyone feels able to take part in our small group discussions and if you would like to join us you would be very welcome.
Thursday-At-Two House Group
Meets: 1st & 3rd Thursdays in the month in a member’s home at 14:00.
Contact: Malcolm Ray-Smith
We continue to meet on the first and third Thursdays each month at Two in the afternoon in the home of Mrs Shirley Beasley or of Mrs Enid Trafford, and we appreciate the kind hospitality of both ladies. We pray for those in the church fellowship who we know are unwell or facing particular difficulties.
In the Spring of 2018 we discussed the book recommended for study by the whole church for Lent Entitled "Worship in the Wilderness" and from April we continued our studies of the life of David. Over the autumn we concentrated on the twelve disciples and thought about what we could learn from their example both during the ministry of Jesus and in the era of the early church. Since January we have begun to read Luke together using questions suggested by Tom Wright.
Members each contribute a pound at our meetings. From time to time we donate the proceeds to such charities as we feel led to support. During the past year we made donations to Christian Aid and the Wokingham Foodbank.
Meets: Every Tuesday in the Bradbury Centre at 10:00.
Contact: Rosi MorganBarry
The life of the church is reflected in its commitment to prayer at all times, and in different ways: from Sunday worship, to prayer before meetings, to private individual prayer at home. The Tuesday prayer group is one more avenue to bring our thoughts to God and listen for God's response.
It continues to meet in John room at 10am every week, throughout the year. On the rare occasions when the Bradbury Centre has been closed, we have met in the corner of a coffee shop. This year, when Christmas and New Year's day fell on a Tuesday, we missed Christmas day, and then met on the 2nd January.
Prayer needs come to us in different ways: via personal request; the weekly notice sheet; the small prayer box situated just inside the Meeting Place; the prayer web link: firstname.lastname@example.org; the work of our Church and the Churches Together in Wokingham. This past year, with all the difficulties of Brexit, and news from countries suffering from conflicts, we have been very aware of the need to ocus on our government and issues abroad. Local affairs are not forgotten: our town and community are also in our prayers. Never forgotten either are the needs of our own church family, and we hold all those in any kind of trouble or distress in our prayers.
Sometimes we have felt things are so complicated and difficult that we do not know how to pray, but we always hold to the sure knowledge that God is with us, is a listening God and knows our needs before we ask.
So what happens in a prayer group?
We pray for people, places and events for which we have concern; this may begin with our church and its activities but also reaches beyond it into our community, our country and our world.
People are at the centre of our concern: those who are in need of prayer for many and various reasons. We must therefore always be open to information about those needs, but such information remains within the groups and is treated with confidentiality.
Events near and far also demand our prayers: unexpected tragedies; natural disasters; wars, conflicts, crime, and the sorry day-to-day news from around the world. We pray for those caught up in these situations; for those afflicted and those who risk their lives to save and help. We pray too for both victims and perpetrators of crimes and conflict.
Some places in the world have particular and on-going needs and we try to remember those places where the news teams have left the scene but the results of difficulties are still on-going. These can be in rich as well as the poorer countries and we pray for these as required.
Every prayer meeting is different, but usually begins with sharing information on particular concerns based on the events of the day and news about any of our number who are ill or in trouble. We start with a reading, a hymn or a prayer from the Prayer Handbook or a thanksgiving for the day. We pray for the spiritual activities of our church and circuit and the effectiveness of worship in touching people's lives.
We are sending out a plea for more people to join our prayer group which meets on Tuesdays at 10.00am, and another plea for information on which to base our prayers (see prayer requests below).
We strongly believe in the power of prayer and that it is a vital resource for the life of the church. We also believe that with prayer we can achieve much, but without it we can do nothing. We are sure that there are many in our Church who would appreciate sharing with us and we would love to hear from you.
Douglas MacDougall & Rosi MorganBarry
There is a prayer board in the Meeting Place right by the entrance for general concerns, and a box for private requests for prayer. We are anxious that this board is used effectively. You can also email us with your request. Send to: email@example.com Contact: Dorothy Adams. All communications will be treated in confidence, and you are asked to keep your requests brief (i.e. less than 50 words).
All these requests will be taken up at the meetings and we stress again will be kept confidential.