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Sunday 10th June
Andy Moulton kicked off by talking about his role in local government and surprised us with some of the areas that our local Council take responsibility for. Local government partners with a lot of agencies such as the police, NHS and fire services. According to a new report published by the Cinnamon Network this week, church groups provide health care and community services worth £3bn a year. Council’s nationally work with 3,500 churches and 200,000 volunteers to deliver many services vital to our communities.
Andy reminded us of the call to pray for ‘rulers and those in authority’ found in 1 Timothy 2:1-2 and gave a few examples of how challenging it is to be a Christian within the confines of a politically correct organisation.
Paul Coates talked a bit about his former role within the YMCA and gave us a whistle-stop tour of all the amazing facilities and services they provide to the community. A very different environment to that of local government, where faith can be shared and prayers said openly. Paul has recently moved on into a new role working within Achieving For Children (AFC) in Kingston. AFC took over Children’s Social Services in a failing authority and have turned the whole situation around within a relatively short space of time, being recently commended following their OFSTED inspection. AFC is a very different environment to the YMCA. Paul can’t be overtly Christian as he was at the YMCA but his faith underpins everything he does. Paul is now working with young care leavers and unaccompanied asylum seekers, many of whom have suffered severe trauma and loss of family members.
Marion Stanway talked about her role within ‘Be Me’, which delivers a Christian programme that the team take into local schools, aimed at raising young women’s self esteem. With all the advertising and peer pressure self esteem in young girls is often at a very low ebb, manifesting itself through self harming, depression, eating disorders and even suicide. The course used with the students is all biblically based but delivered in a secular set up without mentioning Jesus. The follow on course is totally bible based and can/does talk about Jesus. Marion shared with us an up and coming event due on the 6th July with Emma (Guvna B’s girlfriend) who will be visiting St. Paul’s in Dorking at 7.30pm that day. Marion encouraged us to pray and publicise this event to our young women.
Anona Coates shared with us the valuable work that the Leatherhead food bank continues to do and indeed members of our own congregation first made contact through the food bank. It’s a lifeline in our community and has helped so many people for a variety of different reasons – we never know when we might need a helping hand to get back on our feet again!
To finish off our gathering we celebrated the 13th birthday of one of our up and coming young men with song, cake and food – what a great way to end Community Sunday! If you’d like to hear exactly what was said today please do listen here to the full service.
Next Sunday June 17th
Sunday 24th June
Sunday 12th August – Special Event
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