Love is in the air……or is it chocolate?

Posted by GIFT admin on Feb 28, 2013 in GIFT

Lent, Chocolate and Love were the 3 categories for Steve Lowe’s own version of that well loved (or hated?) game ‘Pictionary’. Teams came up with a word in each category for the other teams to draw for their team mates. Try drawing the word “Yum!” The next session on Tue 12th March will be the last one until after Easter. This will be the last chance to get your Cadbury World money in before the trip on Saturday 16th. We do have a couple more children on a waiting list now so do please let us know straight away if you can’t come so we can offer them a place on the minibus. Jane Evans.


The World’s Largest Pancake

Posted by GIFT admin on Feb 23, 2013 in GIFT

Apparently, the world’s largest pancake was 15 metres in diameter! Our pancakes at youth group certainly weren’t anywhere near that big but they were most definitely very tasty. We’re not sure how Steve Lowe managed to cook so many in such a short space of time – or even why he could bring himself to do it – but we are certainly glad he did! With various toppings including chopped fruit (the healthy option), squirty cream, chocolate buttons and a host of ‘squeezy’ items to choose from as well, it rounded off a great session that included a quiz based around facts on Lent and Shrove Tuesday devised by Steve Evans. The winning team consisted of Luis Saunders, George Wade, Sam Rawles and Charlie Reynolds – well done lads. As Fairtrade Fortnight runs from Monday 25th February to Sunday 10th March, we will be basing our session around Fairtrade on Tuesday. Don’t forget to let Jane have your money for Cadbury World and a current Consent Form if you haven’t already provided one. Jane Evans.


Church News – March 2013

Posted by John on Feb 17, 2013 in John Horton, Stourdene News

Good news at last! As I write there are signs of spring appearing all over the place. There are snow drops, aconites, crocuses, cyclamen and the first daffodils appearing in the garden along with the delicate shades of the hellebores. Even the days are longer and when the sun does actually come out one senses just a little more strength in its rays.

That has to be good news, but so is the fact that Nikki Moon from Ettington has been accepted to train for ordination in the Church of England. She is due to begin her training in the autumn but until then she is going to help in the Benefice in a number of different ways. We will all benefit from the experience that Nikki has to offer but she will also be receiving some “on the job training”. For Cath Vickers and me it is great to have an extra team member to share the load.


The best news of all however comes right at the end of the month when we celebrate Easter. This year it is as early as it can be, falling on Sunday March 31st. Of all the church festivals Easter is by far the greatest and without it and the events of Holy Week and Good Friday, Christmas would be a meaningless celebration.


The tiny baby of Bethlehem, whom we first encountered at Christmas, has grown to manhood; worked hard as the carpenter of Nazareth and spent the final three years of his life preaching and teaching his message of transforming love to all who will listen. He has built a little band of followers to take over his work and travels courageously to Jerusalem with them, knowing that his message is challenging and undermining the Jewish religious authorities. Indeed they so dislike what he teaches that they want him killed and will stop at nothing to achieve their goal.


Following help from Judas and a few dubious legal manoeuvres, Jesus is hung on a cross to die around midday on Friday. The matter has been sorted – or so they think. Three days later an early morning visit to the tomb by a group of women reveals an empty grave and a risen Christ – An incredible event that it takes sheer faith to believe.


The good news is not simply because someone has died and come back to life but because Jesus was the sinless Son of God and by his death we can be forgiven for all the bad things we have done, cleared of all guilt that can weigh us down, ruining our lives. Over a century ago Mrs Alexander put it very well when she wrote, “There was no other good enough to pay the price of sin; he only could unlock the gate of heaven and let us in”.


Easter is about celebrating new life – out in the gardens and the fields but also in our selves. After a long, wet and cold winter we need a celebration so why not join us over Easter and in the days beforehand to celebrate new life and all it can mean for us? Service times are shown elsewhere but at Easter they will be joyful, they will be celebrations and they are for us all as we learn again about that transforming love so needed by us all and our communities.


A very happy and joyful Easter to everyone!





Logo Mania

Posted by GIFT admin on Feb 4, 2013 in GIFT

What do the following have in common?
An iced cake
A ring
A bracelet
A pair of socks
A pair of shorts
A video game
A magazine
….. have you worked it out yet?! They are, of course, all great ideas on how we can develop and perhaps even market our new GIFT logo. This session we had a lot of fun getting our creative juices flowing and designing products which could bear George Wade’s winning logo design. We liked them all and hope to see some of these great ideas (on paper) become a reality. Who knows, we may even be able to launch a GIFT range and raise some serious money for our charities. Keep your eyes on this blog for progress reports.

Next session we will be celebrating Shrove Tuesday, euphemistically termed pancake day (!) with freshly cooked pancakes and all the toppings. We will also have some pancake tossing races up and down the aisle. Should be yum and lots of fun! We shouldn’t forget that Valentine’s day is on Thursday 14th February, so we might even play a couple of rounds of blind date or take me out, in honour of Saint Valentine himself! We look forward to seeing you then.

Steve Lowe

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