Saturday, December 28, 2013

During December Channel 5 showed a The Bible, a five-part series that had been viewed by more than 200 million worldwide, breaking audience records from the US to Spain, spawning a New York Times bestseller novelisation, a Bible app downloaded by millions, a concert tour, and America's fastest-selling series DVD ever!
To do the whole Bible in 10 hours is impossible, so the TV series was very selective in the stories chosen to be shown. This meant that major characters and stories were missed out. No Job, Jacob, Joseph or Ruth for example.  I also thought that the series picked a lot of the more violent stories - perhaps going after the generation brought up on the blood and guts of hollywood - rather than more of the some reflective “make you think stories”.
Perhaps you saw the series, and like many of the 200 million who have already seen the series, you may want to know more - one mega church in America had 3000 baptisms as a result; or have questions.Perhaps you didn't see the series and are wondering what all the fuss is about. If you want to know more about the Bible, the church will be following a course called E100. You can start at any time but the church collectively will be starting in January.
The E100 Bible Reading Challenge is based around 100 carefully selected Bible readings (50 from the Old Testament and 50 from the New Testament) designed to give participants a good understanding of the overall Bible story from Genesis to Revelation. The 'E' stands for Essential and each of the Essential 100 readings ranges from a few verses to a few chapters.
I think this is an excellent way to get into the habit of daily bible reading but also get a sense of the whole story of the Bible so I am suggesting we do this, before reading the whole bible in a year.
It is suggested we do 5 readings a week, so it will take 20 weeks to follow.
There is a book that goes with the readings which if bought via the church are £5 instead of £7. Please see Alun or Jane of you would like the book.
Each Wednesday a group will still meet at the Vicarage at 7:30pm to discuss the readings from the previous week. Every Tuesday a group will meet at 10am in Wadworth church. If there is demand for an afternoon group then one will also be provided.

Perhaps you do not want to commit to 20 weeks, but would still like to know more about the Christian Faith. If this is you can I recommend the Y course. It is called the Y course because it allows you to ask all the questions you have ever wanted  - why, why why! This 8 week course starts on thursday the 30th January at 7:30 in the Vicarage. Bring a friend. Ideal if you have had a child Baptised and want to know more yourself to help them grow up in the Christian faith.

The probation service have done an excellent job of keeping the churchyards in good order this year. However we are having a lot of problems with ground movements which are leaving so of the headstones unstable. The relatives of the person in the grave is responsible for maintaining the headstone so please check any you visit as headstone testing will be starting in January.
Also please remember artificial flowers are only allowed for Christmas, during february ALL artificial flowers will be removed front the churchyard.

Now are there any budding journalists out there who would like to put the church magazine together? We need help in the computer side, assembling and delivering. Another aspect of church life we need help with is in keeping the church clean.  Can you volunteer?

Returning to the TV Bible series, one theme came through to me, whether it was Abraham, Moses, Saul or  David, and that was each of these major characters in the Bible were flawed, troubled people who  God used in a powerful way. This is a great encouragement in our doubts, failures and mistakes - that God does use us knowing we are imperfect and will sometimes mess up!  And for that I am truly thankfully. Happy New Year
Alun