What's New?

Lockdown Church Service Sunday 17 May

This Sunday 17 May, Goring Free Church will be streaming a video message and worship. Click on their You Tube page Goring Free Church to access their church playlists. This week's message reflects on Psalm 21 and is entitled 'Victory - then, now and forever!'

This is part of the initiative during the Lockdown period, for Connexion church services and messages to be made available online for members of our community to join if their own church is unable to offer a weekly service virtually.

Other church services

Ben Quant at Wormley Free Church is also continuing to post up Sunday services on their website each week. To access the services click on the website link: www.wormleyfreechurch.org.uk.

They are pre-recorded so can be viewed at any time. Details are featured on Wormley's Homepage and in the Virtual Church section. Each service is also followed by a chance for the congregation members to 'virtually' join together via Zoom for a shared cup of tea and chat.

Bethany Green's weekly messages from Rosedale Community Church can be viewed on their You Tube link: Rosedale Community Church.

Simon Allaby at Bolney Village Chapel is also streaming their Sunday morning worship on their Facebook page. Click on the link: www.facebook.com/bolneyvillagechapel.

David Batchelor at South Street Free Church has also been streaming Sunday services on You Tube. Click on the link: South Street Free Church.

Lockdown Church Service Sunday 10 May

This Sunday 10 May, South Street Free Church, Eastbourne, will be streaming their Sunday Service through You Tube.

This is part of the initiative during the Lockdown period, for Connexion church services and messages to be made available online for members of our community to join if their own church is unable to offer a weekly service virtually.

To join David Batchelor at South Street on Sunday 10 May, for bible readings, sermon, prayers and worship, click on the link: South Street Free Church. The service will start at 10.30am.

 

 

Other church services

Ben Quant at Wormley Free Church is also continuing to post up Sunday services on their website each week. To access the services click on the website link: www.wormleyfreechurch.org.uk.

They are pre-recorded so can be viewed at any time. Details are featured on Wormley's Homepage and in the Virtual Church section. Each service is also followed by a chance for the congregation members to 'virtually' join together via Zoom for a shared cup of tea and chat.

Bethany Green's weekly messages from Rosedale Community Church, can be viewed on their You Tube link: Rosedale Community Church.

Simon Allaby at Bolney Village Chapel is also streaming their Sunday morning worship on their Facebook page. Click on the link: www.facebook.com/bolneyvillagechapel.

Next week we will be bringing you a link for Goring Free Church.

 

Lockdown Church Service Sunday 3 May

This Sunday 3 May, Bolney Village Chapel will be streaming their Sunday Service through their Facebook page.  

This is part of the initiative during the Lockdown period, for Connexion church services and messages to be made available online for members of our community to join if their own church is unable to offer a weekly service virtually.

To join Simon Allaby at Bolney Village Chapel on Sunday 3 May, click on the link: www.facebook.com/bolneyvillagechapel. The service will start at 10.30am.

Ben Quant at Wormley Free Church is also continuing to post up Sunday services on their website each week. To access the services click on the website link: www.wormleyfreechurch.org.uk.

They are pre-recorded so can be viewed at any time. Details are featured on Wormley's Homepage and in the Virtual Church section. Each service is also followed by a chance for the congregation members to 'virtually' join together via Zoom for a shared cup of tea and chat.

In addition Bethany Green's weekly messages from Rosedale Community Church, can be viewed on their You Tube link: Rosedale Community Church.

 

Containers - Please Pray!

Please will you continue to pray for the two containers that left St Ives for Bethesda last November, and have remained in Freetown Port since 5 December.

The delay is due to a request from the authorities for a payment of £15,000 in duty. This has resulted from a controversy regarding the NGO status of the goods. 

The authorities dispute that Duty Free for organisations, such as Bethesda, is only applicable to ‘purely religious items’ for example, bibles, and to qualify for Duty Free, Bethesda would need to have NGO status, rather than community-based NGO, which is the Bethesda category. 

The delivery cost for the containers to reach Bethesda has already been paid and the request for such a high, additional duty payment is both unprecedented and completely unaffordable.

Adding to the difficulties, is the current state of emergency due to Coronavirus, which hampers communication with the authorities to appeal for the necessary correction. 

Inside the containers is a whole range of  items, eagerly awaited by the Bethesda community:

  • Shoe bags from Zion Community Church, St.Ives, Cradley Chapel, Ebley Chapel and Woodmancote Church
  • Sleeping bags, blankets, sheets, towels, curtains 
  • Table cloths, crockery and cutlery
  • Clothes and shoes for adults and children
  • At least 60 boxes of new school uniforms
  • 100s of school text books - children's story books, adult Christian books, and some new books that have been donated for the Evangelical library
  • Assorted toys, as well as balls for football and netting for goals
  • Furniture, bunk beds, cots, settees, and desks for Magnus and Daniel
  • Sewing machines and manual typewriter for blind folk

Prayer is welcomed from the whole Connexion Community for the issue to be resolved swiftly, and at minimum cost (or none!) and that the containers will safely reach Bethesda as soon as they possibly can.

 

Donate

If you would like to contribute towards the important work of The Connexion both in the UK and in Sierra Leone, please click on Donations. All contributions, no matter how small, are of huge value to enable us to continue the legacy of the Countess of Huntingdon.

Lockdown Church Service Sunday 26 April

This Sunday, 26 April, Rosedale Community Church will be broadcasting a Sunday Message on their You Tube page, for the Connexion Community to access.

This is part of the initiative during the Lockdown period, for Connexion church services and messages to be made available online for members of our community to join if their own church is unable to offer a weekly service virtually.

To join this Sunday's message by Bethany Green click on the You Tube link: Rosedale Community Church which is planned to be available from Saturday evening onwards.

Ben Quant, who broadcast last Sunday's service from Wormley Free Church, says: 'It was lovely on Sunday to have visitors to our service from our churches at Middleton and Hailsham, and likely from other churches as well!'

Wormley will continue to post up Sunday services on their website each week. To access them click on the website link: www.wormleyfreechurch.org.uk. Details will be featured on their Homepage and in the Virtual Church section.

All of the services are pre-recorded, so can be viewed at any time, but there will also be a chance to join together with the Wormley congregation after the 10.30am service on Sunday via Zoom for a virtual cup of tea and a chat!

Forthcoming online services/messages

Sunday 26 April: Rosedale Community Church with Bethany Green

Sunday 3 May: Bolney Village Chapel with Simon Allaby

Ebley Chapel will also be making their Sunday Meeting on 26 April available to members of the community via Zoom from 10.20am. To access visit their website www.ebleychapel.co.uk and go to the Services section for a link to the Zoom meeting. Terry Gillard has asked if you would like to join in to please email him beforehand at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Lockdown Church Services

Each Sunday during the Lockdown period, a Connexion church service will be available online for members of our community to join if their own church is unable to offer a weekly service virtually.

The first service, a video broadcast from Wormley Free Church, will take place Sunday 19 April at 10.30am.

To join this Sunday’s service click on the website link: http://www.wormleyfreechurch.org.uk

Details will be featured on their Homepage and in the Virtual Church section.

The service will be pre-recorded, but there will also be a chance to join together after the service via Zoom for a virtual cup of tea and a chat!

The link to the Wormley service will also remain on the website for those who would like to watch it at another time.

The schedule for Connexion online church services for the next three weeks is as follows:

Sunday 19 April: Wormley Free Church with Ben Quant

Sunday 26 April: Rosedale Community Church with Bethany Green

Sunday 3 May: Bolney Village Chapel with Simon Allaby

Sunday 10 May: South Street Free Church with David Batchelor

Sunday 17 May: Goring Free Church with Nigel Gordon-Potts

Sunday 24 May: Sheppey Evangelical Church with Joe Gregory

We will be posting up reminders and links to the services on The Connexion website for you each week, to easily enable you to access them. 

It’s a great way to keep our strong community together in these strange and difficult times. We do hope you can join us!

Prayers for Sierra Leone

Coronavirus

The first case of COVID-19 reaching Sierra Leone was reported on 31 March.

As of today, the number of those tested as infectious has risen to seven, with no reported deaths. According to APO (an African Press Consultancy) there are a further 243 people currently in quarantine. 

To reduce the risk of infection spreading, the Government put in place an intitial three-day lock-down from Sunday. Schools have closed, religious gatherings are banned and restrictions are in place for international travel and entry into the country.

One of the main fears experienced by inhabitants of Sierra Leone is the scale of poverty and overcrowding, which substantially increases their vulnerability.

Added to this, they have recent memories of the outbreak of Ebola, which acutely revealed their lack of resources in responding to epidemics and providing effective medical treatment for those affected.

Prayer

Please may we ask for the Connexion Community to join us in prayer for assistance and protection during this crisis, for the people and children in our local communities and as a whole in Sierra Leone.

Container Update

As previously reported, two containers that are bound for Bethesda were dispatched back in November from St Ives. They arrived in Freetown Port on 5 December, and that is where they have remained. The hold-up is due to issues with bureaucracy - a situation that threatened to run up additional costs, due to a controversy regarding the NGO status of the goods. 

Unfortunately, the situation has since worsened, with an order issued to charge £15,000 to cover import duty for the two containers and their contents. 

Clearly, this is devastating news. The exceedingly high figure is both completely unaffordable and wholly unnecessary. The authorities dispute that Duty Free for organisations, such as Bethesda, is only applicable to ‘purely religious items’ for example, bibles, and to qualify for Duty Free, Bethesda would need to have NGO status, rather than community-based NGO, which is the Bethesda category. 

Prayer

Please may we ask you to join us in prayer for this situation. That God will bring about a fair decision to release and enable these containers to swiftly reach the children in Bethesda, at no additional cost.

'With God, all things are possible.' (Matthew 19:26)

 

Donate

If you would like to contribute towards the important work of The Connexion both in the UK and in Sierra Leone, please click on Donations. All contributions, no matter how small, are of huge value to enable us to continue the legacy of the Countess of Huntingdon.

New Health Centre Sierra Leone

More progress has been made with the construction of a new Health Centre for our communities in Sierra Leone. We are delighted to share with you new photographs as they are sent to us, showing how much development has been achieved so far. The latest shows the roof structure is coming along very nicely!

Background

During their November visit to Sierra Leone, Janet O’Shea with Bethany and Esther Green were introduced to a church service congregation, where they noticed a young boy. Sitting next to his mother, he was in pain, whimpering quietly to himself, and it soon became obvious that there was something seriously wrong. His mother explained that two weeks earlier her son had been playing football when he fell and broke his leg - in two places. She could not afford medical help and could not raise the money for transport to reach a clinic where he could be treated.

At Mabang, the team met a young man with his two small children. He had just buried his wife because she had not been able to reach the hospital quickly enough.

In addition, at Brama School during a two-week visit in the summer, at least six children were taken ill with malaria, while at Bethesda two children needed treatment for malaria and one for typhoid.  

Help was given to those mentioned, but it left no doubt of a great need for improved health care facilities. 

Magnus Bendu expressed his great concern for the necessity of cheap, available medical support, and raised the consideration for funding to build and equip a local Health Centre. 

Prayer

Prayer followed these visits and Magnus’ request, and in June last year, Zion Community Church prayed as a whole community for confirmation that this was a project that the church should support. 

God provided their answer with speed. That very evening a generous cheque was received (from a donor outside of the church community) for £5,000, which enabled the purchase of land, and this was followed in December by a donation from a Connexion church member for £30,000 to cover the costs of the build. Confirmation indeed!

We are excited to be charting the progress of this build and sharing the news with you as we receive it. It is a wonderful project and the Health Centre has the potential to transform the lives of our communities in Sierra Leone. 

Together we thank God for His amazing answer to prayer!

Coronavirus

We also ask for prayer that Sierra Leone will be spared from a widespread epidemic of Coronavirus. Their case numbers currently total 534 with 15 new cases reported yesterday (19 May). The total number of deaths is 33. Please continue to pray for protection over our communities and that all who are affected by the virus receive the necessary level of health care.

Donate

If you would like to contribute towards the important work of The Connexion both in the UK and in Sierra Leone, please click on Donations. All contributions, no matter how small, are of huge value to enable us to continue the legacy of the Countess of Huntingdon.

 

Virtual Church at Wormley

During this period of the Coronavirus crisis with church communities unable to meet up in-person, Wormley Free Church has set up a new Virtual Church page on their website, where they plan to post videos and useful resources. 

Their first broadcast streams a virtual service from Sunday 22 March, Praying Right Now. This is followed by a Church Get-together on 24 March and a Covid-19 video by Spoken Truth.

On 25 March, there is also something for the younger members, with a virtual Paul Kerensa Event, giving a live reading of his children’s books.

Ben Quant, Minister, said: ‘Wormley is delighted to share Virtual Church with the whole Connexion Community. Our first broadcast did contain a few glitches, but we are endeavouring to become be more polished as we progress!’

Please click on the following link to access the Virtual Church section: https://wormleyfreechurch.org.uk/category/virtual-church/

It's well worth a visit!

Coronavirus

We are all now well aware of the public advice about avoiding social or other gatherings so as to limit as far as possible the spread of coronavirus. It is known to be very contagious. It is also known that its effects on older people can be much more serious or life threatening. 

The Trustees have been monitoring this situation closely and recommend strongly the cancellation of all church meetings, services, life groups, bible studies and other activities for the foreseeable future until such time as the public advice from government changes. This recommendation will have a direct impact on meetings on Sundays and at other times during the week. 

After taking soundings from a number of Connexion churches, and in line with the advice now given by other denominations, the Trustees advise that all meetings held on Connexion premises should cease with immediate effect and until further notice. 

As Sunday services should not now take place, the Trustees are exploring the development of online worship streaming across The Connexion with our ministers, so that as a family of churches we can continue to support each other and the people of God who worship regularly with us.

There is no doubt that we are facing difficult times demanding extraordinary responses, but while we should take every care and precaution and be very deliberate about the decisions we must now take, we do place our trust and hope in our risen Lord with the assurance of the words in Psalm 91:

He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. Psalm 91:4-6 

On behalf of the Trustees

The Connexion

 

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