The Wales Synod Chair, Rev. Dr. Stephen Wigley will be leading the BBC Radio Wales Celebration Service as part of a series during Advent. This service, for the 2nd Sunday in Advent, will be broadcast on Radio Wales at 7.30am on Sunday 9th December.
From October 29 – 30, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm 13 children from Urdu Fellowship aged 12 – 19 from Swansea, Cardiff, Newport and Merthyr came together at Wesley Methodist Church, Eaton Road, Swansea for Vacation Bible School (VBS). It was arranged and organized by Synod Enabler, Rev. Irfan John. The theme was “Foundation of the Christian Faith”.
In building our program of study we focused on “Christian Living” to build a firm foundation. Children also learned the basic doctrine of “Trinity”. At every point, Gospel was shared. It was a wonderful time for children and volunteers to come together and worship God, enjoying one another through games and small group discussion, as well as spending time in solid teaching sessions.
Many children described how VBS has helped them understand a lot of things. We heard parents tell stories about their children talking about what they learned.
Learn more about the role that Churches can play in supporting the clean energy transition at an evening of discussion, workshops and refreshments at Beulah URC, Rhiwbina, Cardiff.
‘The Chaplaincy is amazing. The chaplains are incredibly friendly and welcoming to all students. They create a family feel which builds a strong community that any student can be part of.’ (Hollie, Student Union President)
“Thank you for all your help this year, you’ve been amazing and ‘Pizza, Prayer & Praise’ has been perfect too.” (Will, Cardiff Anglican & Methodist Students Society)
It’s comments like these that make it all worthwhile! My Anglican colleague, Revd David Sheen and I are always busy at the University Chaplaincy; we feed curry or chilli to 60 – 80 students and staff once a week at our £1 Lunch, we sit and chat with a regular 20 or so students in our lunchtime drop-in café, and we worship or study the bible alongside several more (Bible study lunch has 8 regular attenders along with Taizé prayer & meditation). One of the most exciting ventures though, happened in a pastoral conversation with one of the students, who was bemoaning the fact that he didn’t have an opportunity of singing more recent praise music through anything that we did at the chaplaincy – so I said, ‘let’s do it!’. (I feel very much at home in that kind of worship, but I’d found that it’s hard to start anything new unless you know you’ve got a few people willing to give it a try!). And so, ‘Pizza, Prayer and Praise’ (PP&P) was born.
We had three opportunities before the end of the last academic year to try out PP&P. The first was a great success with ten students coming to worship and pray and talk about how God is reflected in our lives (‘a city on a hill cannot be hidden’). Three weeks later, we had twelve students talking about how they came to faith, and in the first week of exams, we had 8 students reflecting on the ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ (TKC) prayer initiative (TKC is an ecumenical prayer initiative that runs for ten days from Ascension to Pentecost inviting people to prayer).
As students gathered to eat pizza, the ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ song played to set the scene and introduce the time of worshipping God. We looked at the Lord’s Prayer and thought about when and how we learnt it and how it helps us connect with God (or not). We played a clip from the TKC website about what praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ really means. From Matthew 13, we talked about what Jesus meant when he talks about ‘The Kingdom of heaven is like…a mustard seed, yeast, treasure, a pearl or a net’; and then we came up with our own contemporary versions, like “The Kingdom of Heaven is like Facebook because it helps you connect with people” and “The Kingdom of Heaven is like the internet which spreads around the world even though we cannot see it.”
The Kingdom has a King, and so we considered how we could make Jesus King in every part of our lives as we reflected individually on praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ in us; and we took up the challenge to pray for five friends, tying five knots in a length of brown string and then tying that around our wrist to remind us to pray. Students went away committed to God and committed to praying for each of their five friends every day throughout the TKC prayer initiative.
PP&P has proved to be a great way of connecting with students and encouraging them in their faith, and we shall definitely be including it in our programme for the new academic year. Alongside our events though, goes the important task of day to day, one to one, pastoral care. This could be a snatched moment in the middle of a busy lunch, when someone shares that their grandparent is in hospital, or it could be a pre-arranged meeting when a student wants to talk through some issue that is worrying them with someone who will listen, give some tea and sympathy and, if appropriate, pray with them. I am also on the University’s Disclosure Response Team, so I am the first port of call for someone who wants to report an incident of violence or sexual assault against them. The team has been set up so that victims of violence and sexual assault can find out what support is on offer and have assistance from us if they want to report an incident to the police.
As chaplains, we are there for everyone, those of faith and those who would tell me that they are not religious. And we are there to support staff as well as students. Please pray for us, and for students arriving in Cardiff in late September; university can be a lonely place when you’ve just arrived and don’t know anybody. And if you know anyone going to university, tell them to check out their chaplaincy; they might just be surprised at what‘s on offer!
Rev. Delyth Liddell,
CODA, a new Christian festival, will take place for the first time on the 27th – 29th July 2018 at Dol Llys Campsite in Llanidloes. CODA means ‘get up, rise up’ in Welsh and is also the part of a musical piece or movement that reflects back on the rest.
The CODA ethos is to be welcoming, diverse, generous and inclusive and its aim is to inspire faith and action in our Churches, communities and beyond. It’s a festival and network for Wales, with festivals planned every other year to enable a network to flourish in between through continuing communication and smaller events.
At our first festival there will be opportunities to listen to and engage with musicians, bands, poets, artists, performers and speakers and to experience creative approaches to worship plus much more. There will be contributions in both Welsh and English (with translation where appropriate).
If you’d like more information, please take a look at our website.
With many thanks,
The CODA team.
The 2019 Momentwm Youth Exchange to North America has been announced.
The plan is to take 10 young people from Wales aged between 17 and 23 to the North East of America in the Summer of 2019 for two weeks.
The trip will focus on attending a National Youth Conference followed by working with a host Church on missional work with young people.
We are then hoping to receive young people from America in the Summer of 2020.
This is a fantastic chance for young people to live their faith on a wider map.
For more information please click on the link below for the leaflet or contact Rev. Flis Randall
Students at Cardiff University were challenged by the recent ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ prayer initiative during a ‘Pizza, Prayer and Praise’ event held by Rev. Delyth Liddell at the University Chaplaincy.
As students gathered to eat pizza, the ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ song played to set the scene and introduced the time of worshipping God. We looked at the Lord’s Prayer and thought about how we learnt it and how it helps us connect with God, and then played Shane Claibornes’s clip about what praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ really means. Using Matthew 13 we considered what Jesus meant when he talks about ‘The Kingdom of heaven is like…a mustard seed, yeast, treasure, a pearl or a net’; and then we came up with our own contemporary versions, like “The Kingdom of Heaven is like Facebook because it helps you connect with people” and “The Kingdom of Heaven is like the internet which spreads around the world even though we cannot see it.”
The Kingdom has a King, and so we considered how we could make Jesus King in every part of our lives as we reflected individually on praying ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ in us; and we took up the challenge to pray for five friends, tying five knots in a length of brown string and then tying that around our wrist to remind us to pray. Students went away committed to God and committed to praying for each of their five friends every day throughout the ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ initiative.
Rev. Delyth Liddell
Coordinating Chaplain and Methodist Minister
Saturday 9th June 2018
Sandfields Methodist Church,
Western Avenue, Port Talbot, SA12 7NF
Come and learn this exciting and enjoyable musical by Roger Jones, based on the story of Mary Jones and her Bible, which inspired the founding of the Bible Society. Learn and rehearse during the afternoon and then perform it in the evening at Sandfields Methodist Church. Rehearsals begin at 1.30pm, to be followed by a performance at 7.00pm. Even if you have never sung in a choir before, come and have a go. It will be a great experience. Please bring a food contribution towards a faith tea. It costs just £3 for adults and £1 for under 18s to take part.
If you cannot take part, then come and enjoy the performance at night. “Greater Than Gold” will be led by Helen Pollard and a team from Christian Music Ministries. For further details, please contact Chris or Viv Gray on 01639 644404.
For those who enjoy listening to Radio 4 early in the morning, the Synod Chair, Rev. Dr. Stephen Wigley, will be leading Prayer for the Day at 5.43am for the week beginning Saturday 21st April. (For those who don’t rise quite so early, these prayers can also be heard using the BBC iPlayer.)