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Thanks for Stamps!

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83746_stamps_2“Thank you for all the used stamps you have collected in aid of St Margaret’s Hospice.  They are very grateful.  Do keep them coming.”

Heather Walker

 

Tabernacle – Place

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 The Reading:  Exodus 25:1-9 

… a sanctuary, that I may dwell in their midst” (v.8) RSV

People through the ages have always needed a place where they can focus their attention on God.  Our passages over the following week describe the first time that the Hebrew people are to have such a place.  At the time they were in the Wilderness and were a people on the move.  They had no fixed abode and so needed a sanctuary that they could up sticks and take with them.

This Tabernacle would last them for hundreds of years, not only through the forty years in the Wilderness, but through all the times of the Judges and on through kings Saul and David.  Thus the Tabernacle was first constructed round about 1280BC.  King Solomon built the first Temple round about 950BC.  This was destroyed by the Babylonians and was only reconstructed (a smaller version) when the Exiles returned, say 500BC.  Finally this was rebuilt and enlarged by Herod starting about 20BC.

This special place was there to represent the presence of God.  When Solomon prayed at the dedication of his temple he quoted the words God had spoken: “My name shall be there” (1 Kings 8:29).  By this he meant that God was everywhere – “Behold, heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain thee; how much less this house which I have built!” (1 Kings 8:27).  God could not, and would not, be limited to a building.  However, people needed a place to focus their attentions and to stimulate their faith in the presence of God.

Jesus however indicated that the time would come when ‘place’ would be secondary to the real presence of God in a believer and in his people.  This is what he told the Samaritan woman at the well (John 4:21-23).  Paul likewise said “you are God’s temple and … God’s Spirit dwells in you” (1 Corinthians 3:16).  In other words the presence of God is with us wherever we are: in prison, in a city, in a slum, in the garden or in a church.

Thank you for your promise, O God, that you are always with me, and will never leave me.  Amen. 

Explore More

1  Where does the Psalmist find God?

    Psalm 139:7-10

2  What place was especially holy for Moses?

    Exodus 3:3-6

Tower Valentine Tour

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Saturday 14th February – 6.00pm to 8.00pm – Adults £3 Children £1 (Children must be over 8 years of age)

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MU’s Sparkling Tea!

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On Sunday 8th February, 0ur MU organised a sparkling afternoon tea to celebrate God’s gift of marriage.

Sixteen couples came and enjoyed a sumptuous tea with cake and sandwiches. We shared wedding stories and looked at the wedding photos and the wedding displays. It was a very enjoyable occasion.   “Thank you” to the MU.

You can see some photos on our video ‘Mothers’ Union Marriage Week & Sparkling Tea’ below.

Tekna Party!

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Last weekend was amazing! The Tekna team held a party in Church with Malcolm the Magician and it was great fun. Twenty seven children laughed, ate together, played games and had lots of fun. It was a toughly enjoyable afternoon and we thank Clare and her team who work so hard with our church children. Eleven children came to Tekna on Sunday morning. They had lots of fun learning about Jesus in the Upper Room.

Election Hustings

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A date for your diary: Taunton Baptist and St Mary Magdalene are organising an election hustings at the Baptist Church on 26th April 2015 at 2.30pm. More details to follow.

Christianity Explored onto Christianity Discovered

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“Christianity Explored went well last Thursday evening and folk told me they really enjoyed it. If it continues to be a success, I am to run another course in the Autumn during the daytime. Rita, Debbie, Sandra Daw and I visited the Christian Resources Exhibition at Westpoint on Wednesday and I discovered that a second course called Christianity Discovered has been written. This is a follow on course and I plan to run one this time next year.”

Rod

Baptism

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Baptism - Ashton - 2015-02-01

Congratulations on your baptism.

 

 

St John’s Ash Wednesday Service

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We are invited us to join St John’s for their Ash Wednesday service on 18th February.  Please note an earlier time than previously advertised.  The service begins at 7pm.  St John’s folk are joining us the night before on Shrove Tuesday for “Pancakes and a Quiz.”  Do sign up at the back of church if you would like to come. Help with providing the pancakes will be gratefully received too.

Rod & Rita’s Home Group

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Rod and Rita’s Home Group will next meet on Wednesday 22nd April at 7.30pm – no meetings until then as Christianity Explored will be taking place instead.

Agape Home Group

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AGAPE continues fortnightly.  The next meeting is on Tuesday 17th Feb at 2.15pm in the Upper Room.  ‘Esther’ has been completed and next we will be looking at the Letter to the Hebrews.

You’re welcome to join even if you’ve never been before.