Racial Justice Sunday 2019

Since 2017, the Methodist Church in Britain has celebrated Racial Justice Sunday ecumenically on the second Sunday in February.

Resources for 2019 are available from the CTBI website, including material by the URC that take the theme of ‘YES, to full Life for All’.

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2019

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is traditionally observed from the 18th to the 25th January – the octave of St. Peter and St. Paul. However, some areas observe it at Pentecost or some other time.

Resources for 2019 have been prepared by Christians from Indonesia, the largest country in South East Asia, made up of more than 17,000 islands, 1,340 different ethnic groups and over 740 local languages, united by one national language Bahasa Indonesia. With some 86% of its 260 million people estimated to be Muslim, it has the largest Islamic population of any country. About 10% of Indonesians are Christian. Indonesians have lived by the principle of gotong royong which is to live in ‘solidarity and by collaboration’, regarding all Indonesians as brothers and sisters.

But gotong royong sits ill at ease with the neo-liberal approach to economics that has led to economic growth, and corruption infecting politics and business, often with devastating effects on the environment. Meanwhile those who are supposed to promote justice and protect the weak fail to do so. As a consequence, a country rich in resources bears the burden of many people living in poverty. Particular ethnic and religious groups are often associated with wealth in ways that have fed tensions.

The Christians of Indonesia found that the words of Deuteronomy, ‘Justice, and only justice, you shall pursue…'(see Deut. 16:18-20) spoke powerfully to their situation.

Resources and more information

Action for Children Christmas Appeal

Be a Secret Santa for a vulnerable child this Christmas!

For most of us, the festive season is a time of joy and family celebrations. But unfortunately, there are thousands of children in the UK right now who are facing a Christmas without food, warmth or love. Action for Children  is working to change this – and they need your help.

This Christmas, Action for Children is asking you to be a Secret Santa by donating to help them make a vulnerable child’s Christmas safe, warm and bright. Their Santas don’t have  reindeers  or wear big red suits. But, they’re doing something very special indeed.

See how becoming a Secret Santa will make a difference to children like Lily this Christmas in this lovely animated film.

Please sign up to become a Secret Santa and donate.

South India trip for 18 – 26 year olds

South India Trip for young adults  17 – 27 October 2019.

ONE Programme: Encounter & Encounter Together are partnering on this trip to offer young adults the opportunity to travel to south India and find out about God’s mission across the region. The cost is £1500, and you must arrange your own insurance.

Closing date 10 December 2018.

For more information see: www.methodist.org.uk/encountertogether or contact g.dixon-gough@CliffCollege.ac.uk

Hosting an OPP Project

Applications are now open for churches or projects to host a ONE Programme Participant (OPP) in 2019/20. Closing date for applications is 5th March 2019, so do think about potential projects and check out Stirling’s Open Space project to see how the OPP in that project is developing connections and engagement with the local community,
See website for more details ‘Becoming a Host Project’:
Hosting an OPP is an excellent opportunity for districts, circuits, churches and church projects to have input from, and into, a young person aged 16-23 based in their project for a year-long, paid, training-provided, internship.
We are always keen to find a wide variety of different projects that can offer an exciting and supported year to an OPP.

Universal Credit hardship

The latest blog post from JPIT suggests that the Government is not looking to see whether Universal Credit is causing hardship. Foodbank referrals are increasing, and, if the Government’s plans are implements,  around 6 million families will be receiving Universal Credit, including around half of the UK’s children.