Newsletter 8th May 2022

Today 

Rev John will be preaching from John 21 v 15 -19 and Acts 9  He will also lead us in communion

Next Sunday 15th May  

Our preacher will be Jane Dronfield. Come along to hear what she has to say to us.

Call to Ukraine from the Isle of Wight 

Just over six weeks ago during worship at Freshwater MC Nigel Watson, (husband of Frances, Methodist Minister in the Island Circuit) received a powerful call from God to travel to help the refugees fleeing Ukraine. He is understandably anxious, as well as sensing God’s peace that this is the right thing to do.
Nigel is funding the trip himself, taking a Van of donated aid, and donations of money to enable him to provide specific aid while he is there. Thank you for all this who have supported so far.  If anyone wishes to provide small financial donations for additional aid, these can be sent to myself and I can pass these into the account Nigel has set up to use while he is away.
 
The trip is open ended as Nigel wants to be open to the Holy Spirit’s leading while he is there.

Please would you pray for Nigel over the next weeks, for all those who are called to ‘go’,   and for those who will have some of their needs met.

Thank you
Frances

Jokes from Simon

My friend keeps saying, “Cheer up mate it could be worse. You could be stuck in a hole full of water.”  I know he means well!

What do you get if you cross a chicken with a cow?  A cream egg.

How does the Easter Bunny receive his letter and cards?  By hare mail.

More Biblical Numbers

As you answer the questions, a pattern should emerge.  Can you then put the questions in the right order?

A Finnish district court has cleared MP Päivi Räsänen and Bishop Juhana Pohjola of all hate speech charges over their beliefs on sexuality.

The former minister of interior was facing up to six years in prison for tweeting a Bible verse describing homosexuality as shameful in 2019.

She also shared her thoughts on marriage and sexual ethics during a radio debate in 2019, and in a pamphlet in 2004. 

Bishop Juhana was also facing charges for publishing Räsänen’s pamphlet.

But the court has unanimously decided to dismiss all charges against her, arguing that “it is not for the district court to interpret biblical concepts”.

Paul Coleman, executive director at ADF International, the legal organisation representing Ms Räsänen, told Premier the ruling is a great victory for freedom of speech across Europe. 

“The court makes it clear that it has no authority to interpret biblical concepts,” he said. 

“It also recognised that what was at stake here was the ability to express Christian beliefs on the nature of man and woman, of marriage and of human sexuality which is fundamental to the Christian faith and needs to be protected.”

Speaking after her victory, Päivi Räsänen said she was grateful to the court for recognising “the threat to free speech”. 

“I feel a weight has been lifted off my shoulders after being acquitted. Although I am grateful for having had this chance to stand up for freedom of speech, I hope that this ruling will help prevent others from having to go through the same ordeal.” 

“ I want to encourage Christians to express their faith and their beliefs and to be open about their faith because the more we are quiet, the narrower will the space be for these freedoms”

The prosecution has been ordered to pay more than 60,000 EUR in legal costs and has seven days to appeal the ruling.

Father, 
We pray for our politicians. Please may you help them to serve their community and be kind to everyone. Please can you preserve their right to say what they believe while giving them wisdom in how they speak. 
Please give us all boldness and block those who are trying to silence other people’s opinions. 
May we also protect the freedom of speech of others. 

(FROM PREMIER CHRISTIANITY)

Please send any contributions that might be published by next Tuesday morning to:   andy