Film Club – April 2015

Friday evening, 10th April, 7:30pm

‘God’s not Dead’ (2014)   12 Rating

An atheist Philosophy professor (Kevin Sorbo) decides to forego dusty arguments in his class, and instead insists that the new students declare that ‘God is dead’. Unable to do this, Josh (Shane Harper) is challenged to defend his faith and prove to the class that ‘God is NOT dead’. Against all odds, Josh stands up for his faith and takes on the challenge—let the debate begin! With enthralling performances from the star-studded cast, including David A.R. White, Dean Cain, and with a special appearance by Christian rock band ‘Newsboys’, and Willie and Korie Robertson (from American reality TV series ’Duck Dynasty’), this is an intensely thought provoking, faith inspiring and uplifting film.

Doors open 7pm, film start 7.30pm.

Free admission, tea & coffee, but bring your own popcorn!

PLEASE NOTE: THERE WILL BE NO FILM CLUB IN JUNE

 

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Bill’s Letter April 2015

Since the demolition of the old church we have been working to establish a long term place of worship in the village.

There has been recent change in the legal designation of the Church Centre. It is now a ‘Parish Centre of Worship’. A Parish Centre of Worship is a church or other building licensed as such by the diocesan bishop in the Church of England, usually where there is no parish church. For most purposes it is deemed to be a parish church but it is dedicated, not consecrated, and parishioners have a right to be married in a neighbouring parish. There is also a licence to be married at St Peter’s Church and Centre too. This means people living in Stanley have a choice about where they get married. So if you are thinking about getting married and are not sure of your options do get in touch.

The events we remember at Easter are, I would say, the most  decisive events in human history. They contain the deepest tragedy and the greatest hope. As we enter into this story once again, we are given strength to face our own difficulties and confidence to embrace our times of joy.

Jesus was called to the home of his dear friend Lazarus who was on the point of death. But he does not set off straight away. By the time he arrives, Lazarus has died. His sisters Martha and Mary, both say, “ If only you had been here”. But Jesus transforms the situation; he claims to BE the resurrection and the life. Then he demonstrates it by raising Lazarus from the dead.

The implication of this does not sink in for the disciples—that Jesus has the power over death. So when Jesus was killed, his friends were frightened and upset. This changed when Jesus was not resuscitated like Lazarus but resurrected. At this Easter may we know the transforming power of Christ, so we experience the hope of new life in whatever we face.

Rev Bill Henderson

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Easter 2015

Easter Services 2015 in Stanley

Please join us at St Peter’s Church on Lake Lock Road and at the Methodist Chapel on Mount Road for our Easter services next month: we will be very happy to welcome you.

 

Sunday 29th March, 10am

Palm Sunday Parade Service: The service will begin at Mount Road Chapel: half-way through the service the congregation will walk to St Peter’s for the rest of the service.

Wednesday 1st April, 7.30pm

Holy week Taize service: a contemplative style of worship with meditative music.

Thursday 2nd April, 7:30pm

Maundy Thursday Passover meal at St Peter’s Church. A special evening service and meal to celebrate the Last Supper. Please let us know if you’d like to come so we know how many people to expect.

Friday 3rd April, 2pm

Good Friday Hot Cross Bun service: a very popular service for all ages, followed by crafts and refreshments.

Sunday 5th April, 10am and 10:30am 

Easter Day services: Easter Sunday family services at 10am at St Peter’s Church or at 10.30am at Mount Road Chapel. Everyone is very welcome.

 

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Film Club – March 2015

Friday evening, 13th March, 7:30pm

‘Saving Mr Banks’ (2014)   12 Rating

Emma Thompson was nominated for a BAFTA for her role as the Mary   Poppins author P.L Travers in the film ’Saving Mr Banks’.  The film was inspired by the extraordinary untold tale of how this, one of the most   beloved stories of all time, was brought to the big screen.

The film is a poignant, sharply funny and moving recounting of Walt Disney’s (Tom Hanks) quest to fulfil a promise to his daughters to make a film of their favourite book, and of its fiercely protective author P.L Travers (Thompson), who has no intention of letting her beloved nanny go to  Hollywood.

The film follows Walt as he pulls out all the stops to change her mind and both have to face some uncomfortable truths about their childhoods. Together they set Mary Poppins free to become one of the most endearing films in cinematic history.

Free admission, tea & coffee, but bring your own popcorn!

Film shown at St Peter’s Church, Lake Lock Road, doors open 7pm

 

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Bill’s Letter March 2015

One of the great themes of God’s relationship with his people throughout history, is helping them move from slavery into freedom. As we approach Easter we see this powerful picture of hope displayed in a number of ways. At Passover the Jewish people remember how God set his people free from slavery in Egypt, using symbols to remember both the pain and suffering as well as the joy.

This year we are planning some thing special for Maundy   Thursday—the night we remember Jesus at the last supper with his friends. It was the time of the Jewish Passover and Jesus took the traditional symbols that had been used for hundreds of years and developed them in a way that is relevant for us today. We will be celebrating a version of the Passover meal.

This has been the foundation for the communion service that we use today. Taking part in the Passover meal really adds to our understanding of the history of our faith, and the powerful symbols of bread and wine help us to identify with the first disciples.

When Jesus took these symbols and applied them to himself, he was pointing to a profound new way that God was setting people free. Free from a deeper and more insidious slavery, a slavery to selfishness that leads to self destruction. This is not just a message for 2000 years ago, but a message for today. A message not just for certain communities, but for everyone. As we become more self aware we realise the different ways that we are still slaves: slaves to other     peoples’ opinion; slaves to the desire for more money or excitement; slaves to fashion and consumerism. Each of us can move and grow into new freedom. Jesus said, “ I have come that you may have LIFE, and life in abundance”. He delivered this promise, supremely by releasing us from the fear of death by his glorious resurrection.

This is a time when we seek to receive this promise afresh. Do please make a point of coming to join in our celebrations that evening, Thursday 2nd April at 7.30pm in the Church Centre, or some of our other Easter celebrations, details of which you can find here.

Rev Bill Henderson

 

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Lent 2015

Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent

This month sees the beginning of Lent, the 40 days of preparation running up to Easter.  Lent begins with Ash Wednesday, which this year falls on Wednesday 17th February.

The forty days of Lent is a reference to the forty days that Jesus spent in the desert fasting and praying, and preparing for his public ministry. He also taught his disciples to fast, so that they had time to focus on God and make time for prayer.  Prayer and fasting often go hand in hand; ‘So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.’ (Ezra 6:23)

Sometimes people might fast by missing a meal during the day to make time to seek God (although obviously this isn’t suitable for some people).  Others might refrain from TV or alcohol, or whatever else might get in the way of being fully focused on God.

In recent years, there have been campaigns to encourage people to start doing something during Lent, instead of giving something up.  These might include carrying out a random act of kindness every day, or something more planned such as volunteering, or actively helping a neighbour in need.

Celebrate the start of Lent, and commit to giving something up, or starting something new, at the Ash Wednesday service at St Peter’s Church on Wednesday 17th February at 7.30pm.

Dan in Real Life

Film Club – February 2015

Friday evening, 13th February, 7:30pm

‘Dan in Real Life’ (2007)    PG Rating

Starring the incomparable Steve Carell, this light-hearted romantic drama centres around the character of Dan Burns (Carell), a newspaper columnist, widower, and single father of three girls who travel to his parents’ house in Rhode Island for a family reunion.

Dan encounters a woman called Marie, who he feels an instant connection with, but then she turns out to be the new girlfriend of his younger brother! And so the comedy begins…

Full of believable, yet quirky characters, gentle humour and a sweet and engaging storyline, this film was released without huge fanfare, but has received excellent reviews for its poignancy and superb storytelling.  The film also stars Juliette Binoche, Dane Cook, Alison Pill and Britt Robertson.

This film was a bit of a low-key release, but has had some excellent reviews.

Free admission, tea & coffee, but bring your own popcorn!

Film shown at St Peter’s Church, Lake Lock Road, doors open 7pm