The Three Rivers Group of Parishes
Church of England - Diocese of Ely

Chippenham, Fordham, Isleham, Kennett, Snailwell


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Foodbank

Please don't forget to bring your contributions to church or the local Co-op shops. Your contributions are still very much needed and really valued. 

There is also a call for toiletries - soap, shampoo, shower gel, toothpaste and so on.

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Carol services

This Sunday - Advent 3 - December 17

  • Fordham Carol Service 4pm
  • Snailwell Carol Service 6pm

Next Sunday - Advent 4 - December 24 - Christmas Eve

  • Isleham Carol Service 4pm
  • Chippenham Carol Service 6pm

Thought for the week  

This week we remember John the Baptist, a good day to think about the baptismal promises which we made and any godchildren we may have.
Do you turn to Christ? I turn to Christ
Do you repent of your sins? I repent of my sins.
Do you renounce Evil? I renounce Evil.

Is God calling you to something?

There are a few things around which it might be good for our churches to be involved with. During Advent David is happy to set aside some time to talk to anyone who would like to take a more active part in prayer, reading the bible, working with young people, thinking about church growth, visiting baptism families, thinking about our faith, and many other things. Please contact David if this is something God might be nudging you towards.

St Andrew's Church, Isleham, Cambridgeshire
Festival of Light on December 2/3 and 9/10

The Church was open to view over 40 illuminated Christmas trees decorated by local groups and businesses and attracted many visitors.

The Community Carols service on Sunday December 10 was very well attended.

Tuesday mornings - opportunities to meet!

No coffee mornings on December 26.

  • Fordham church cafe 
    As usual on August 8 onwards.
    From 9am onwards. Refreshments and play area for children.

  • St Andrew's Isleham Coffee morning 
    Tea, coffee, cake and bacon rolls, from 9am- 12noon. 

Mel Takac - Pioneer Partner

On November 21 we welcomed Mel Takac as our new “Pioneer Partner”.

Mel is coming to work full time across the group as part of her exploration of what God is calling her to do. Mel will be with us for between 12-21 months. Please do make her feel welcome.

Mel was commissioned at Fordham and Isleham on December 3 and at Snailwell and Chippenham on December 10.

More about Pioneer Ministry:

https://www.cofepioneer.org/

The Thursday Prayer Group - next on December 14

We now meet on a weekly basis to pray together about current affairs and needs for approximately one hour, and would welcome any who would like to join us, whether you wish to pray aloud or in your heart. On December 14 we shall meet at the Vatcher's, 96 The Causeway, Isleham.

Three Rivers Mothers' Union - next on December 17

The MU will be serving mulled wine and mince pies after the Fordham Carol service on December 17, any donations gratefully received, please talk to Jenny.

All welcome at any of our meetings or events.

Healing Eucharist - next on Sunday December 17

Healing Eucharist is on the 3rd Sunday of the month in the evening and is held at Fordham at 6.30pm. 

Fordham Day Centre Lunch Club - next on December 27

Fordham Day Centre is a lunch club for older people and meets on the 1st and 4th Wednesday of each month from 10.30am to 2.30pm.

We meet at Withers’ Place community room for company, chat and food. Coffee and tea are provided on arrival, then lunch and a cup of tea before you leave.

We have a “mobility” taxi available, if needed, for transport to and from the meetings. The Day Centre is run by volunteers (not carers) who cook and look after the members.

If you are interested and would like to know more about the Day Centre please contact Judith Wood. Tel: 01638 720328.

Grave Talk - a new initiative next on Saturday January 6

Grave Talk is a café space where people can talk about death, dying and planning our own funeral services. 

This project, launched through the Church of England is taking place in Fordham church on the first Saturday of the month (except August), from 10am – 11.30 ish. Good coffee and cake provided. All welcome. 

Contact Carol Taylor for more details.

Deanery Commissioning Service - Sunday January 7

A new venture for the Deanery on Sunday 7th January at 5pm at Bottisham Church there will be a service when people who exercise a ministry are able to be commissioned in their work for the year. People who read, pray, sing, clean, ring, offer hospitality, work with children, or anything else, all are invited. 
NB No Evensong at Fordham.

Mums+ - next on January 12

Mums+ is a monthly coffee morning for fun, conversation and sharing our questions of life, faith and parenthood – all ages welcome. For more details contact Laura Cox-Watson 01638 724839.

Upcoming dates -

  • Friday January 12 at 9.15 am at Scotsdales Garden Centre, Fordham.

Messy Church - next on January 14

For families - Crafts, story/song session and a simple meal at Fordham church from 3.30-5.30pm on the second Sunday of the month.

If you know anyone who would like to take part, or you would like to help in any way please do speak to one of the Ministry Team.  

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The institution of the Rev’d David Cleugh - October 20 at Fordham

The institution of the Rev’d David Cleugh as Rector of the Three Rivers Group by the Bishop of Ely was held on Friday, October 20 in St Peter and St Mary Magdalene, Fordham. 

There was a good turnout with excellent music during the service and splendid refreshments afterwards.  Thanks to all who helped to make it a great occasion.

 David and his wife Hannah, who is the Senior Chaplain to the Bishop of Ely, will live at the vicarage in Fordham.

James Marston - Placement Student

We are pleased to welcome James Marston on placement in the Three Rivers Group. James is training for ordination at Westcott House, Cambridge. He will be with us for the next year.

Advice and guidance on security for places of worship

"The news from France and the random, cold blooded murder of the Roman Catholic priest Father Jacques Hamel has been a shock to many of us. It is also very unsettling as it is a Priest doing what so many of us do, simply going about our normal ministry. However, that doesn't mean we should be fearful or overly concerned. We do need to be careful. "

The Ven Hugh McCurdy, Archdeacon of Huntingdon & Wisbech and The Ven Dr Alex Hughes, Archdeacon of Cambridge write: 

"The police have been working with church leaders in the UK to establish a communication network through which reassurance and guidance to the Christian community can be passed. Last week’s murder of a priest in France is a terrible tragedy, but we must use it to test our ability to communicate to this wider network and I want to offer the following advice. 

Church leaders and their congregations should remain alert not alarmed.
There is no current intelligence to suggest any attack planning of this nature in this country. However it makes sense for all church leaders to review their security plans and to encourage their flock to be vigilant. Any suspicious behaviour should be reported immediately through 999."

Bishop of Ely's statement on Syrian refugee crisis

 

Thank you to everyone who focused their prayer last week on the refugee and migrant crisis. Please continue to pray for a sane and just solution.  

Suggestions of what we can do as individuals and as churches are included in the Bishop of Ely’s statement on the crisis.

Speaking about the Syrian refugee crisis, the Bishop of Ely, the Rt Revd Stephen Conway said: ‘The Bible tells us to love our neighbour, but many more times to love the stranger. The Syrian refugees, whether they have made it as far as Europe or not, are our sisters and brothers. We need to offer a Biblical welcome. The refugees’ burden of fear, loss and deprivation is our burden. We must find a language of welcome, not suspicion.

‘We should be proud of Britain’s ongoing commitment to overseas aid and humanitarian relief. We must support people in refugee camps in and around Syria. And we also have a responsibility within Europe to share the burden of countries like Greece and Italy, among the first entry points. 

‘Britain must participate fully in a European welcome for those who are vulnerable and fleeing violence and oppression. We must welcome all – Muslim and Christians equally; but we should remember that many refugees are Christians from villages which have lived the faith since Apostolic times.

‘I invite us all to continue to pray and to consider what other help we may provide, for example supporting one of the charities at work on the ground.’

A number of charities and non-governmental organisations have opened appeals specifically aimed at helping the plight of refugees.

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Julian Prayer Group - next TBA

Most of us find silent prayer on out own difficult. but praying together provides support and a profound sense of God's presence with us. If you would like to deepen your prayer life do come along.

We prepare for a period of silent prayer through a combination of words, music, and sometime images, then come out of the silence with music and prayer together.

We usually meet once a month on a Monday evening at 7.30pm. We usually meet at Fordham vicarage.

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Foodbank 

 

The Foodbank in Soham is open on Thursday mornings from 9.30-11am at the Salvation Army hall in Chapel Lane.

 

If you would like to find out more about the Foodbank operation in this area just drop in and introduce yourself to Howard Laver or one of the helpers who'll be pleased to tell you all about it.

 

Your contributions are still very much needed and really valued.

 

In Isleham we have been collecting an average of over 50 items a week - and one week we had over 100 items - thank you.

 

Do pick up a bookmark about the Foodbank with a list of what’s wanted in church.  

Stocks are currently relatively low in the central store at Ely that supplies the Soham Foodbank distribution centre which serves Soham, Fordham, Isleham, Chippenham and the surrounding villages, which receive more food than they contribute.

At the moment the Foodbank needs canned goods; in particular tinned tomatoes, veg, fruit, meat, and sponge puddings - but not beans, pasta or soup.

At Isleham we welcome donations of food at our Sunday service and at our Coffee mornings at the Social Centre on Tuesday mornings; we can also accept donation of cash.

In Fordham and Isleham, we also have collection boxes in the Co-op stores, so you can also donate there.  

If you can’t see the box in the Co-op then please ask the staff, it is there, and it would be good to make sure that they are used as much as possible.

Mike Banyard is a voucher holder for the Three Rivers Group; and in Isleham Foodbank vouchers are also available from the Revd Christopher Goodwins, 102 The Causeway, or call 01638-780284. Please leave a message if you get the answering machine.

Reading the Bible

The website http://3rivers-bible.blogspot.co.uk/p/the-three-rivers.html

Children and Holy Communion  

All five PCC’s have now agreed that our church family younger children (aged 7 and above) may be admitted to Holy Communion after appropriate instruction. 

Muriel Hood and Ruth Ogden have agreed to instruct our young people. 

If there are young people in your family who would like to receive communion, then please do speak with   

Church cleaning at Fordham

We need some more people to help keep our lovely Church clean and tidy.  If you feel you could spare about 1 hour a month to join one of our cleaning teams, please contact Jenny on 01638 720820, to decide where and when you can help.

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Pewsheet

If you have items for inclusion in the pewsheet then do speak to any of the Ministry Team, or ring Carol Noble (Group administrator) on Wednesday mornings, when, usually, it is compiled on 01638-721616.

St Peter and St Mary Magdalene, Fordham

  • More 100 Club Members needed. If you would like to join, or know anyone who would like to join, please speak to our PCC secretary Jane Foulds for more details.

  • Roger Palmer and the bell ringing team would be delighted to welcome anyone who would like to ring. Bell ringers meet on Thursdays in the tower; please speak to Roger about this.

  • Lydia would welcome new members for the choir. The choir meets for rehearsal on Fridays, in the early evening during term time, and sings at the principal service on Sundays and Choral Evensong once a month.

  • If you would like to help with reading or intercessions then please do speak to Mike or Kate.

Fordham Day Centre

Is looking for volunteers to help at the weekly meeting for senior members of our community. If you would like to help then please talk to Judith Wood, Doreen Rule or Mike.

Baptisms

There have been many baptisms in our churches these past few months. It is so good to welcome the newly baptised into our churches. We are trying to maintain a balance between baptism as a major part of the main service on a Sunday and giving space for families to gather at other times either on Saturdays or Sundays. Thanks too to our Baptism Visitors who are making such a difference in welcoming and helping at baptisms.

Thefts from our churches

Both Kennett and Chippenham have had substantial amounts of lead stolen from their roofs. A section of Fordham’s lightning conductor was also taken, making the building unsafe and unprotected.  Do please keep an eye out for any illegal behaviour around our churches and report it speedily both to the Police and to Churchwardens. Vigilance is essential these days I am afraid.

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Volunteers

Volunteers are needed to read, lead intercessions, take up the collection, arrange flowers, ring bells, make coffee, welcome newcomers, visit Baptism families etc etc in all our churches. If you would like to help, then please do be in touch with Mike or Kate and we will provide training if necessary and encouragement in any case.

News page added to the web site to accommodate information from the new weekly pew sheet.

Youth Group page added to the web site.

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