Dear Friends

We are in unchartered waters and unprecedented times! Never-the-less, it is good to see so many people pulling together and reaching out practically to help those who are particularly challenged by the restrictions placed upon us all. The Church of St John the Baptist and the Methodist church, like all churches across the country are now closed. However, although we cannot meet, we continue to pray and offer worship with the help of technology, and do what we can to serve and help each other know that the Lord is near!

These are trying times and many will be tested severely for all kinds of reasons not least the sense of loneliness and isolation. Therefore what we would like to do is reassure you that we are here for you in your time of need. There are some beautiful words in the New Testament that I think speak to us at this difficult time: “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Which means we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid.”

As a representative of the churches in Armitage and Handsacre, I would like to welcome you and encourage you to make contact with us knowing that you will be warmly and courteously received. You might want us to pray for you or someone you know and love, or simply phone for a chat and for comfort and reassurance. Please feel able to do so!

Be assured that, although the church can’t meet, the church continues to give thanks and pray for the many who are showing their care in great acts of kindness and sacrifice. And praying for those who become ill and for those who sadly find themselves bereaved through the loss of a loved one. But church is also praying for the day when all this is behind us and we can once again meet with and rejoice with the ones we love.

I think the words below from St Paul are a source of great comfort: “ For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” With prayers and good wishes.