As we move into September and the children return to school, we begin to pick up activities that we have put to one side for a while. In our church that means that a variety of smaller groups (like homegroups, Mothers’ Union and Who Let The Dads Out?) will start again. It is also a time for new beginnings like our Alpha Course which starts this month.
Alongside this we continue to care for, and seek to improve our church building. We need to renew some of the roof and we are making plans to resurface the church drive. There is more that we would like to do, but we are limited by finance. This year it will cost in excess of £90,000 to run our church. That’s over £7,500 each month just to ‘keep the show on the road’. Our regular income from all sources (including individual giving, hall rental etc.) is only about £6,750 per month.
This means that we are dependent on special events and gifts to make up the deficit. Our annual Gift Day is an important part of this. This year’s Gift Day will be on 17th September. If you are on the church Electoral Roll you will receive a letter about this, but if you are not please do consider whether you could give an additional financial gift to enable us to continue with the mission of our church. There will be ‘spare’ letters at the back of the church – do pick one up.
This year we are not just asking for financial gifts on our Gift Day. We will be combining it with a Volunteering Day. We rely on people giving time to the church in a whole range of activities. So we will also be asking people to think about what they can give in terms of time and skills as well as financially. Do look out for a list of opportunities to serve.
The apostle Paul points out on more than one occasion that the church is a body made up of many parts. We heard this in our reading on the last Sunday of August:
For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully. (Romans 12:4-8)
If you are a member, or a friend, of our church, then please do consider how you will respond to the Gift & Volunteering Day on 17th September.
Revd Andy Wilson
Vicar, Christ Church Portsdown
Interim Minister, St Thomas à Becket, Warblington with St James, Emsworth
Joint Area Dean, Havant
Chaplain, Havant & Waterlooville FC