11th December 2016 Advent 3
A warm welcome to worship in
THE PARISH OF ALVERSTOKE


St.Mary’s ✢ St.Faith’s ✢ St.Francis’
“You too, be patient and stand firm,
because the Lord’s coming is near” James 5v8.
__________________________________________

Sunday’s Worship across the Parish:
8.00am St.Mary’s Communion
Revd Humphrey Prideaux
9.15am St.Mary’s Morning Prayer
Revd Chris Richardson/ Dorothy Dingle
9.30am St.Faith’s Morning Prayer
Paddy Trasler
10.45am St.Mary’s Church Alive Communion
Revd Andy Norris
11.15am St.Francis’ Carol Service
Paddy Trasler
6.30pm St.Mary’s Communion
Revd Humphrey Prideaux
_____________________________________

Join us for
CHRISTMAS WORSHIP
Please take a parish Christmas Card with all our special service details on the back!

Have fun with the
MESSY CHURCH ADVENT NATIVITY TRAIL
Remember the Advent Sheep Trail around the village shops? This year we have hidden knitted characters from the Nativity for you to find in the village shops. Take a leaflet from the back of St.Mary’s or print one from the church website. With many thanks to the Alverstoke WI knitters for the amazing characters who need to be found from having got lost whilst Christmas shopping!

Offer guests St.Mary’s
NEW YEAR INVITATION CARDS
Please freely give out ‘you’re always welcome’ cards to our many Christmas guests which greet them for the new year, Candlemas and our spring courses. Please use them to invite people and let them know they’re always welcome, not just at Christmas – thank you.

THE MARRIAGE COURSE
Marriage enrichment courses for couples prove to be invaluable whether married for 2 or 20 years and more. Invest in your relationship at our 7 week course on Wednesday evenings from 1st February. Especially calling the ‘men’ to suggest this – don’t leave it to the woman in your life to worry about how to ask you to go! £10 per couple. “It seems to work” The Guardian.
“It feels like the start of a journey not the end of a course” The Times.

Next CHRISTIANITY EXPLORED
We’re about to celebrate his birthday – but who is Jesus? Can you say who he is, why he came and what then is his purpose for you today? If not then join us in exploring these ultimate questions of faith at our next Christianity Explored Course starting on 2nd Feb 2017.

Come & Sing HANDEL
Join us in St.Mary’s on 7th January when Portsmouth Choral Union invite you to join them in singing Handel’s popular Coronation Anthems. Register at 7.00pm, Rehearse 7.30pm, Refresh 8.30pm and Perform at 8.45pm. £5 singers, £3 audience.

SPECIAL GOSPORT UNITY SERVICE
St.Mary’s is hosting a special Churches Together service at 6.30pm on 22nd January at the end of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. Theme: Crossing Barriers.

Candlelight CHORAL EVENSONG
For Candlemas at 6.30pm in St.Mary’s on 29th January with the choir singing Stainer, Brewer and Harris cathedral music. A beautiful choral celebration.

CHRISTINGLE at Candlemas
St.Mary’s will celebrate Christingle at 10.45am on Sunday 29th January when the theme of the Candlemas weekend is Jesus at his dedication being proclaimed as ‘Light to the Nations’. Christingles are the oranges with a candle, fruit, and red ribbon!
__________________________________________________________

This Sunday CAP CHRISTMAS HAMPERS
Christians Against Poverty are collecting items to bless local families who otherwise cannot afford any luxury goodies foods, toiletries or new toys this Christmas. Any donations received in St.Mary’s by next Sunday 11th would be very much appreciated, thank you very much.

This weekend ENJOY THE FESTIVAL CAFE
Please come and enjoy coffee and cake, or a luncheon, or afternoon tea in the Parish Centre during the festival. Our excellent cafe is open each day and run by the fabulous team to whom we are grateful.

CHRISTMAS CARDS DELIVERY Thanks
Thank you to all who helped deliver so many Christmas cards this year – an amazing job done with about 98% roads covered! We’re grateful and pray that all those homes may be blessed by your effort offering greetings and prayers in the name of the Lord this Christmas.

CHRISTMAS TREE FESTIVAL TEAM Thanks
We’re enjoying another wonderful festival. A significant team chaired by Rob Hamilton put months of preparation towards this special event. There is so much behind the scenes work – all the joinery, catering, publicity, stewards and Angie Jones coordinating some 700 performers! It is a huge undertaking but one which is such a great success – thank you to the many festival makers! This year the extra preview day for schools and care homes has proved to be very worthwhile and was greatly appreciated.

Ethiopia CONGRATULATIONS and THANKS
Well done Lottie & Kate and thank you for your cards and busking recently by which you’ve raised £192 for the women and girls of southern Ethiopia – a brilliant Christmas present!

STEWARDS SOUGHT FOR CRIB SERVICES
Are you able to help us for our 3.00pm and 4.30pm services on Christmas Eve – to welcome the 600+ guests? Please let Kathryn Clarke (warden) know if you can help – thank you.

THE ALVERSTOKE TRUST
The Trust exists for the relief of those in need in the parish – can we help someone you may know? The trust can make small grants (typically £100-£200) to parish residents facing time of need, hardship or distress. Please check the Alverstoke Trust page on the parish website for more detail
or contact the Parish Office.

ON CHRISTMAS SUNDAY
Please note that at St.Mary’s the mid-morning services will combine to be one all age Christmas Communion service at 10.00am whilst the St.Francis’ Christmas Communion takes place on Christmas Eve at 11.00am, meaning there is no St.Francis service actually on Christmas Sunday.

NO SUNDAY EVENING SERVICES!
Please note that with them being on Sundays this year, there will be no evening services on both Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.