CTE- the terrorist attacks
REFORMATION 500: TAIZE in BIRMINGHAM:
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Pastoral Messages from the Presidents of Churches Together in England to all engaged in the work of Churches Together, locally, at Intermediate level and nationally
Statement in response to the Finsbury Park attack, 19 June 2017
We were shocked to learn of the brutal attack on worshippers leaving the Finsbury Park mosque in the early hours of this morning. We unreservedly condemn all acts of violence which seek to undermine our society and foster hatred and intolerance.
Jesus came among us as the Prince of Peace, and in his name and for his sake, we stand in solidarity with our Muslim friends.
We remember in our prayers those who have been injured.
We pray for the leaders of our communities and nation, and for those who work in our emergency services.
We pray too for those who perpetrate such acts that God may touch their hearts and minds with his love, forgiveness and compassion.
8 June 2017- London
As the feast of Pentecost dawned, we learnt of another appalling terrorist attack in London, the third attack within weeks. It is therefore important that we say clearly alongside our fellow faith leaders that such horrific acts are abhorrent to God and to all people of faith. Life is precious, the gift of God, and it is to be prized.
Our thought and prayers will continue to be with those who have been bereaved and those who are recovering from injuries suffered in those attacks.
Churches Together across the land have been praying in these past weeks for the coming of God’s kingdom. In the face of increased terrorist activity those prayers are particularly poignant. The kingdom of God is love, justice and joy, and the gifts of the Spirit given for building it. Even in such acts of darkness, we have caught glimpses of the kingdom in the kindness of strangers to each other, the extraordinary bravery of the emergency services and the dedication and skill of medical teams. We thank God for them.
Part of our vocation as Christians is to stand together with our friends and neighbours of all faiths and none to seek the flourishing of all, and refuse to let violence and hatred deflect us from living compassionately and kindly together. Another part of our vocation is to share in Christ’s ministry of forgiveness and reconciliation, to pray for those who hate that they may grow close to the God of mercy and love and be transformed.
In this season of Pentecost we invite all who are part of Churches Together to pray for the gifts of the Spirit so that they may be activists for the love of God, building healing, reconciling and forgiving communities where God’s kingdom can grow and all be valued as children of God.
Archbishop Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury
Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster
Revd Dr Hugh Osgood, the Free Churches Moderator
The Revd Canon Billy Kennedy, the President nominated by the New Churches, the Religious Society of Friends (ie the Quakers) and the Lutheran and German-speaking Churches
Bishop Angaelos, the President for the Orthodox Churches
Bishop Dr Eric Brown, the Pentecostal President
500th Anniversary of the Reformation 2017
More on the Reformation 500 website http://www.reformation500.uk
READ the Statement on the Reformation from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York
Saturday 20th May 2017, 10 am, Reformation Conference in Fulneck Settlement , Moravian Church and Fulneck School, West Yorkshire LS28 8NT. It’s focus is in the music particularly hymnody. There will be three presentations: Lutheran, Moravian and Methodist. Preacher Rev Roger Walton
Saturday 21st November 2017 Lutherans up-north, Reformation Celebration in Headingley at St Columba’s URC church Leeds.1pm Preacher Bishop Emeritus Walter Jagucki
“How to mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation with sensitivity”
– STATEMENT FROM CTE
From the Presidents of Churches Together in England who represent the Western traditions of the Church: The Most Revd and Rt Hon Justin Welby (Archbishop of Canterbury), HE Cardinal Vincent Nichols (Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster), The Revd Dr Hugh Osgood (Free Churches Moderator), Bishop Eric Brown (Pentecostal President) and The Revd Canon Billy Kennedy (The President nominated by the New Churches, the Religious Society of Friends – ie the Quakers – and the Lutheran and German-speaking Churches).
Their statement is issued with the prayerful support of the Orthodox President, HE Archbishop Gregorios of Thyateira and Great Britain.
Setting the tone
As Presidents of Churches Together in England we encourage all churches in England to mark the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation in 2017 with sensitivity as we acknowledge our unity in Christ. We have learnt over the past century that unity is achieved by walking together, and we have grown in communion, friendship, reconciliation and healing. During this anniversary we want to be able to listen to the truth that is in each other, to hear our different stories, and build bridges of deeper understanding and respect.
Speaking at the Inauguration Eucharist of the General Synod of the Church of England in November 2015, Fr Raniero Cantalamessa, Preacher to the Papal Household, said, ‘The Christian world is preparing to celebrate the fifth centenary of the Protestant Reformation. It is vital for the whole Church that this opportunity is not wasted by people remaining prisoners of the past, trying to establish each other’s rights and wrongs. Rather, let us take a qualitative leap forward, like what happens when the sluice gates of a river or a canal to enable ships to navigate at a higher water level. The situation has changed dramatically since then. We need to start again with the person of Jesus, humbly helping our contemporaries to experience a personal encounter with Him…Justification by faith, for example, ought to be preached by the whole Church – and with more vigour than ever. Not in opposition to good works – the issue is already settled – but rather in opposition to the claim of people today that they can save themselves thanks to their science, technology or man-made spirituality, without the need for a redeemer coming from outside humanity.’
Setting the scene
The course of the English reformation was long and complicated, whereas in most of what is now Germany and Switzerland it was sharp and short. That means that the anniversary of Martin Luther’s 95 theses on 31st October 1517 is but one date in a long English history which lasted from Henry VIII’s break with Rome in 1532-36 to the Restoration Settlement of 1662. As religious wars convulsed Europe, Protestant and Catholic reformers alike sought with integrity and faithfulness to bring the church closer to the will of Christ. As they did so they lent shape to what became modern Europe. During England’s long reformation, streams of Christian life that we now call Catholic, Anglican and dissenting, were all present, and have been shaped by what they experienced.
We acknowledge with sorrow that during the years of the English reformation our ancestors in the faith inflicted unspeakable violence on each other. We rejoice, however, that by the grace of God we have learnt to look at that history through the eyes of each other’s martyrs, to appreciate their integrity, courage and self-sacrifice, and above all their faithful witness to God. As we commemorate the 500th anniversary, we want therefore to acknowledge both the good that came out of this period of our history, and also the pain inflicted and the scars that remain.
We therefore urge the churches in England to keep this anniversary together in the spirit of five ‘R’s
Rejoicing – because of the joy in the gospel which we share, and because what we have in common is greater than that which divides; and that God is patient with our divisions, that we are coming back together and can learn from each other.
Remembering – because all three streams of the Reformation have their witnesses and one church’s celebration could be another’s painful memory; and yet all believed they acted in the cause of the gospel of Jesus Christ for their time.
Reforming – because the Church needs always to grow closer to Christ, and therefore closer to all who proclaim him Lord, and it is by the mutual witness of faith that we will approach the unity for which Christ prayed for his followers.
Repenting – because the splintering of our unity led us to formulate stereotypes and prejudices about each other’s traditions which have too often diverted our attention from our calling as witnesses together to the mercy of God in proclamation and service to the world.
Reconciling – because the call to oneness in Christ begins from the perspective of unity not division, strengthening what is held in common, even though the differences are more easily seen and experienced.
In national and local events, whether together or separately, we pray that our churches may honour each other and give thanks for our growing friendship and fellowship in the Gospel.
The speaker at Churches Together in Wakefield AGM on 25th July (Sandal Methodist Church 7pm) will be Canon John O’Toole Catholic National Ecumenical Officer who will speak on the Reformation
Prayer at St Martin in the Bullring
Inner life and Solidarity
Took place from Friday 28 April – Monday 1 May, 2017
In cooperation with the local churches of the city, the international and interdenominational Taizé Community led a young adult gathering in Birmingham over the Early May Bank Holiday weekend, 28 April – 1 May, 2017.
Over 600 young adults registered for the event and together with visitors and host families, over 1,000 people took part, at various venues in Central Birmingham, including St Martin in the Bullring, the Shared URC/Methodist complex at Carrs Lane, and the Catholic Cathedral.
Churches Together in England
Annual Review for 2016
Read it on this link: http://www.cte.org.uk/annualreports
We are happy to publish here other relevant announcements sent to us but these cannot be verified and WYCT is not responsible for content or the event(s) . To add an item, e-mail the address in the contact page
Reminder – LEGACY: The Story of Martin Luther
On the 500th anniversary year of Luther’s Ninety-Five Theses being sent out, Saltmine Theatre Company is creating a new 20-minute dramatic presentation celebrating the life and work of a true Faith Pioneer. This powerful portrayal can easily fit into a church service or into a celebration event already scheduled.Three Saltmine actors (including one directly involved in writing this play) were interviewed by Paul Hammond on UCB’s Talking Point programme last week. To hear the interview, which includes an extract from the play, please use this link: http://bit.ly/UCBLegacyAvailable October – early November 2017
Suggested minimum donation: £550 + travel donation Performances have already been confirmed in Leek and Stourbridge in October. There is still good availability to book LEGACY. To enquire about booking a date please contact Joanna Bell, Tour Co-Ordinator on 01384 454 807 or email email@example.com
Saltmine Theatre Company is a professional company with a Christian ethos. Saltmine creates faith-motivated art and tours to churches, theatres and schools throughout the UK and abroad, performing to over 100,000 people each year. For more information please visit www.saltminetrust.org.uk
TWO VACANCIES in the United Reformed Church, Yorkshire Synod
- Children and Families Development Practitioner – part-time
- Youth Development Practitioner
Details are attached and can also be found and downloaded on the URC website at http://urcyorkshire.org.uk/notice-board/
Closing date for applications is 16th June, and formal interviews will be held on 30th June.