Hope Journey Epiphany – Journey with the Kings

Hope Journey Epiphany – Journey with the Kings

What a joy to be able to share Epiphany – Journey with the Kings with Year 1 children at Brookdale Primary School and Greasby Infant School this week using Microsoft Teams

We continue to deliver an adapted programme so this time, we delivered Journey to School maps for the children to prepare prior to the event and we are grateful to both schools for facilitating this




Team works at a social distance – very different from our normal practice!

Following my welcome we

  • talked about all the things we come across on our journey to school, in order to create the context of journeying
  • Introduced my three ‘very special friends’ who had travelled a long, long way to share their story
  • Watched the puppet sketch of the three magi retelling their experiences of travelling and meeting the baby Jesus
  • We talked about the significance of gold, frankincense and myrrh as gifts to the future King
  • and about gifts which would be suitable to give to a baby and what we can give Jesus as our gift (being kind, looking after each other eg helping someone who falls over, sharing toys and sweets, donating to FoodBank, even helping parents by keeping our bedroom tidy!)
  • The children wrote or drew their gift on a star whilst we listened to and sang Our God is a Great Big God and Shine from the Inside out
  • And just as the kings changed their direction, we committed ourselves to being the kind of people God wants us to be
Display of work in foyer

Some of the children’s’ work is displayed in the foyer, please do call in and admire the wonderful artwork when you are passing

God Became like Me (Scripture Union)

During the plenary the children told us what they had committed to on the star.  We gave the children gifts too – a story book God Became Like Me (Scripture Union) and an Epiphany prayer card to share with the family at home. 

Our next Hope Journey is Cross Factor (Easter story) which will take place in March when we look forward to welcoming Year 5 children from Brookdale Primary School and Greasby Junior School

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Church Closure

It is with a heavy heart that the church has decided to close for public worship and private prayer.

We know that under the guidelines we could remain open but do not feel that it would be responsible of us to encourage people

to leave their homes and join together to worship, albeit socially distanced.

Our services will continue via Zoom every Sunday at 10.45am and you are welcome to join us from the safety of your own home.

Details of how to access the service can be obtained by phoning Judith on 07955754160.

Should you require prayer you can leave details in the “SAY ONE FOR ME” box at the front of Church or via the website.

If you need pastoral help, please phone Rev. Yangsun Yi on 633 2753 or leave a message

at the church office.

Carols and Christingle raises funds for The Children’s Society

Thank you for coming to our Carols with Christingle Service on Sunday 20th December, it was a blessing to be able to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ together – albeit sitting in households at 2 metre distancing!  Thank you also for joining us at Outdoor Carols where we could sing our carols – at appropriate distancing in the car park!


We thank Tesco, Bidston Moss for the generous donation of oranges for the christingles, and we thank you for your very generous donations towards the work of The Children’s Society as it continues to transform the hopes and happiness of young people facing abuse, exploitation and neglect (www.childrenssociety.org.uk)

We pray that 2021 will be a year of blessings for us all

Sue Elliott

Christmas Angels 2020

Thank you to all those who knitted angels this year and helped to distribute 566 (yes 566!) angels before Christmas, around church, on school railings and hidden around the village amongst christmas trees, bushes, the pond ………..– we hope you managed to find our Christmas gift for you and your family.


Angels are messengers from God.  Our angels bring ‘Good News’.  We know this Christmas will be very different but we wanted you to know that in these difficult times, we are praying for our whole community. 

You are invited to add photos and comments on our Facebook page and the QR code takes you straight to our website where there is an invitation to our Christmas services.

We received lots of thank you letters from the headteacher and children at Greasby Infant School, please do drop into the foyer to read the letters and admire the fabulous artwork

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey Meet The Characters

Hope Journey Meet The Characters

This week we shared Meet The Characters via Microsoft Teams with a class of 30 Year 2 children at Brookdale Primary School on Wednesday 2nd December and with 2 classes of 30 children at Greasby Infant School on Thursday 3rd December

The team…working at a social distance!

Following my welcome and introduction, we shared three workshops

  • Marys experience – from the message from the Angel Gabriel, the census, travelling to Bethlehem, arriving at the Inn where there was no space, the arrival of Jesus and the amazing visitors – the shepherds and three Magi – who recognised Jesus as the King of Kings
  • The Angel Gabriel – Gods messenger to fulfil Gods plan.  The appearance and message ‘Do not be afraid….’ to Mary and then Joseph, also the shepherds and Magi. 
  • The Innkeeper and donkey – who explained his job as an innkeeper, why Bethlehem was so busy due to the census, the arrival of Mary and Joseph followed by the birth of a baby. The children engaged enthusiastically in waking the donkey up so that the donkey could tell them his story, carrying Mary to Bethlehem and all the commotion in the stable!

At the end of each story, the children asked lots of questions including whether Mary and Joseph were married and asking the Angel Gabriel if he could fly!

God Became like Me (Scripture Union)

God Became Like Me – The Christmas message from Scripture Union

During the plenary the children shared what they had learnt from this Hope Journey.  They also received the usual take home gifts of a story book (God Became Like Me), a colouring sheet to explain to families the characters they had met today, a candle prayer to share with the family on Christmas Day, a Happy Birthday to Jesus sticker and an invite to the Christmas services. 

Our next Hope Journey is Epiphany –Journey with the Kings, which will take place on Tuesday 12th and Wednesday 13th January.  

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator

Forum Christmas Gift Bag Appeal 2020

Every year we support the Forum gift bag appeal.

Forum offers supported accommodation to vulnerable people aged 16+in Wirral, Cheshire West and Chester, Chester East and Warrington.  This year it has been a privilege to extend our accommodation to a number of rough sleepers, now accommodating 335 vulnerable people.  Christmas can be an especially difficult time for the residents and Forum works hard to ensure that they are emotionally supported, well fed and that they at least receive one gift from someone.  This, of course, is going to be quite a challenge this year!

As always traditional gift bags would be much appreciated, we will ensure that all items are stored safely for a minimum of 72 hours and sanitised before distribution.  Much needed gifts (unwrapped please) include:

a hand towel, facecloth, toothbrush, toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, shaving gel, deodorant, socks, mug, body spray, chocolate, sweets, gloves, hats, scarves, novelty gifts, picture frames, writing pen

Gift bags can be passed into the office, 9.00-11.30 Monday- Friday (except Thursday), by Friday 4th December

However, to promote the safety and wellbeing of supporters, staff and residents, you may wish to support financially instead, enabling Forum to shop directly for residents thus minimising contact.  It can be done in two ways, either by cheque, made payable to Forum Housing Association and posted to the address below, or Online Bank Transfer.  It would be helpful if financial donations could be received by Friday 4th December

Bank details are

Bank : NatWest
Account Name : Birkenhead Forum Housing Association Ltd
Sort Code : 60-23-17
Account Number : 03163296
Address
18 Hamilton Square
Birkenhead
Wirral
CH41 6AX

Thank you again for sharing the love of God and bringing such joy to Forum residents

Sue Elliott

Chair Forum Housing Association

Letter from Rev Yangsun Yi

Dear sisters and brothers in Christ

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

We have already spent the first half of the period of lockdown and the other half should go if the lockdown is eased on the 2nd December as promised by the prime minister. 

I wonder how you are and how you have spending your time since lockdown? One of my friends retired some years ago always had answered me he is reading books whenever I rang him.  How about you?  Have you been busy for collecting the fallen leaves in your garden?  Or have you been reading more books than ever before?  If latter, what kinds of books have been reading and what are your favourite genres?   My friend who almost always answered me he is reading books related to Christianity.  Similar to my friend, I read books in relation to the Bible especially social, cultural, ritual background and systematic theology.  Whatever a genre of book we read, it gives us joy, peace, excitement and nurture our knowledge of humanity and the nature.  Sometimes, it changes our thoughts that influence to our way life.  Then, how much more the words of God in the Bible can change our thoughts and our way of life and our life.  This is for all scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that everyone who belongs to God may be proficient, equipped for every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

I have recently heard a story of a man who’s been changed his life from reading the Gospels.  In the late twentieth century, one man from the Bible society of Zimbabwe went to a village to distribute the copies of the New Testament to the villagers.  The man from the Bible Society said to a man that he can give the copy of the New Testament for free.  The guy said, ‘If you give me the copy, I will roll the page and use them for rolling cigarettes.’   The one from the Bible Society still wanted the guy to take the Bible with him.  So the man from the Bible Society said I will give you this copy with one condition.  That was the guy promise him that he is going to read the page of the New Testament before he rolls it for cigarettes.  The guy had promised him, so the man from the Bible Society gave the copy to the guy.

A few years later, the same man from the Bible Society went to the village and was preaching people in a tent how the Bible could change their lives.  One guy among the crowds suddenly stood up and said his life has been changed for the copy of the Bible.  He said he is the one who took the copy of the Bible for rolling cigarettes.  He continued to say, ‘I promised to read each page before rolling cigarettes, which I did.   So I smoked my way through Matthew.   And I smoked the whole of Mark.   And then I smoked Luke.  I started smoking John, but when I came to John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life”, a light shone in my face.  And now I believe in Jesus

The words in the Bible has power to justify and sanctify us up to the stage of perfection.  This is because no words in the Bible came by human will but men and women moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God (2 Peter 1:21).

We are living in the time of winter when night is much longer than day light and of lockdown due to Covid.19.  So it is natural to feel loneliness more than any other seasons especially if we live alone.  According to C. S. Lewis, British writer and theologian ‘We read to know we are not alone’.  I fully agree with him.  I believe the more we read, meditate and contemplate the words of the Lord, the more we find God is with us.  And He provides us a great love, hope, peace, comfort, as well as proficient, equipped for every good work.

In this sense, I’d like to invite you to read the Proverbs in the Old Testament. I pray that the Word of the Lord is a lamp to your feet and a light to your path,

The Lord bless you and keep you;
 
the Lord make his face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you;
 the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you peace

With lots of love,

Yangsun Yi

Hope Journey Remembering

We continue to deliver a programme of Hope Journeys with children and staff at our three local schools – however we continue to work differently! This week we thoroughly enjoyed sharing a virtual Hope Journey Remembering via Microsoft Teams. On Tuesday 17th November we met with two Year 6 classes of 30 children each and staff at Greasby Junior School and on Wednesday 18th November we met with the Year 6 class and staff at Brookdale.

The team…working at a social distance!

Following my introduction and welcome, we shared three workshops

  • What and why we remember – a look at a clip from Horrible Histories and a reflection on Armistice Day, what we should be remembering, why and the symbolism of different coloured poppies
  • A Wartime Experience – delivered whilst sitting in an ‘anderson shelter’, it was such a pity the children could not join us this year.  We thought about the different types of shelters, listened to various recorded stories from those who survived WW2 and thought about how we would feel in such conditions
  • The Anne Frank story – we considered the traumatic experiences of Anne Frank, thought about what Christians are remembering through Communion, wrote prayers which will be offered at Sunday worship on Sunday and prepared a wreath of hope – hopes and dreams for ourselves and the community/world around us.  The schools will display the wreath in classrooms
The Wreath of Hope at Brookdale Primary School

During the plenary the children shared what they had learnt from this Hope Journey.  They also received the usual take home gifts of a replica WW1 St Johns gospel, issued to men in active service; the Jelly Babies and Jesus story and a weekly ration of sweets (equivalent to 5 jelly babies) to share between the entire family for one week – if you could even get hold of some sweets!

Our next Meet The Characters sessions will take place week beginning 6th December for Year 2 children at Brookdale and Greasby Infant School.  This continues to complement the assemblies which are now regularly video recorded to send into school.  It is a great privilege that the schools are so willing to engage with us.  Please join with me in prayer as we continue to share the gospel with over 700 members of the Greasby community this year

Sue Elliott

Hope Journey co-ordinator and E A T

Compassion

Compassion is a charity that helps to release children from Poverty in 25 of the poorest countries worldwide.

Here at Greasby Methodist we have supported two boys for the last six years from the generous giving of our members.  Our two boys are called Joseph who is aged 13 years from Tanzania and Amos who is 9 years old from Uganda .

Every few months we get wonderful letters from them telling us about their favourite activities, their families and their projects where they go to school, get regular medical reviews and make friends.  Over the years we have been able to support not just the children and their families but also give donations to support the work of Compassion so the money is directed to where the need is greatest.

If you want to find out more about the work of Compassion or if you are interested in sponsorship of children to release them from poverty go to their website www.compassionuk.org

God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble.

Psalm 46:1

Teams 4u Shoebox Appeal 2020

Greasby Methodist Church Shoebox appeal

As part of our mission at Greasby Methodist Church we have for many years taken part in the Christmas Shoebox Appeal.

We now fill and pack our boxes for T4U, started many years ago by Dave Cooke, which is based in Wrexham.  Dave came to cafe church last year, to talk about all the work they do, not only delivering shoeboxes to the poorest children in Eastern Europe, but medical treatment in Uganda, holiday camps for orphans in Belarus, to the distribution of sanitary wear and education on menstrual health to schoolgirls in Africa.

The shoeboxes started off by people wrapping their own shoeboxes in Christmas paper, which you can still do today, but for the last 3 years, we have chosen to buy the ready made boxes that T4U offer.  We pay 35p a box, and at Greasby we usually order 200 boxes every October.  The advantage is that every child receives the same size box, and for busy parents, just picking up a box in our atrium on their way out of church, is quicker for them to fill.

We start by every box having a toothbrush, toothpaste, a bar of wrapped soap and a flannel as basics, then the fun begins.  Always, pencil crayons and a notebook or colouring books, a cuddly toy, hats, gloves and scarves, tennis ball, a puzzle and small bags of wrapped sweets.

We never include war related items, such as toy soldiers, guns or tanks.  Our shoebox service is usually held mid-November, the congregation bring their boxes up to the front of the church to be blessed by our minister, before they are taken to the warehouse in Birkenhead, to be checked before they start their long journey to Eastern Europe.

Many other Methodist churches in our Wirral Circuit also take part in our shoebox Appeal. The team makes a video that show the children receiving their boxes. The joy and wonder on their faces can be very emotional, as these children have absolutely nothing, life is a struggle every day.  Last year 2019, the Wirral sent over 6,000 boxes, and ours went to Moldova, close to Romania.

Of course, 2020 is different in so many ways.  People have been unable to visit the shops to buy presents but the knitters in the team have been knitting and making gifts all year round, so these helped enormously to fill the boxes. With news of the second lockdown, we had 48 hours to finish off the boxes, collect them all and take to the warehouse with hours to spare before the doors were locked!

We took 103 boxes and £150 in donations from our church on 4th November. The photo shows Rev Yangsun Yi blessing our boxes in the vestry, as this year we were not allowed to bring them into church with the Covid restrictions.  We will never be able to see the face of the child who receives the box we have filled, but there is surely no greater way to show them God’s love in a Shoebox, and to know that someone, somewhere cares for them.

Lyn Jackson-Eves T4U Shoebox Co-ordinator