Vicar -- Revd Philip Venables,
The Vicarage, Preston Road, Whittle le Woods, Chorley, PR6 7PS
To contact the Rev Philip Venables please telephone 01257 515141 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Church Wardens St Johns --Lyndon Wright Deborah Green--St Johns
Verger Don Harris
The Curate writes……..
It feels hard to believe that it’s been eleven months since I was ordained and started as Assistant Curate here at St Johns and Clayton Brook. In one sense it feels like only yesterday that I was walking into church as the clueless new boy … some of you may feel that not much has changed in that regard! Yet in another sense it feels as though we’ve been here for a much longer time. We’ve been so welcomed into the church family and community that we feel very much at home.
As we’re learning in Ephesians, one of the amazing things about the gospel is that we’re adopted as God’s children through faith-union with his Son, Jesus Christ (Eph 1:5). That also means that when we trust in Christ we become part of a new family (Eph 2:19). Every believer who has God as his or her Father through faith in Jesus becomes a brother or sister to every other Christian believer.
When we moved to Whittle-le-Woods and Clayton Brook we left many dear and long-time friends. We’re a two-hour drive away from our parents and the boys’ grandparents. But one of the great joys of moving here was to find that we had family here.
We knew we had family here by the love, support and welcome we’ve received from you. As Jesus said, we are recognisable as his disciples by our love for one another (John 3:35). We’re so thankful to God that he has adopted us into his family. And we’re also thankful that God has chosen to put us in this particular part of his family here at Whittle and Clayton. It’s a pleasure to worship and live alongside you as part of the family of Christ.
Paul’s prayer in Ephesians is that we would grasp more of who God is and what he has done for us in Jesus (see Eph 1:15-19; 3:14-21). He then encourages us to maintain the unity and love that God has given us by making us a family (Eph 4:1-6). One of my prayers for us is that as we continue to study Ephesians on Sunday mornings and in Growth Groups we would grasp more and more of what it means to be God’s children and brothers and sisters in Christ, and therefore grow, not only in our love for God, but also in our love for one another.
Wouldn’t it be great if other people, like Amy, the boys, and myself, came to us and found ours to be a church where our love for God and our love for each other showed that we are part of God’s family? Wouldn’t it be great if other Christians came to us and found that they already had family here? And wouldn’t it be great if those who aren’t yet part of God’s family came to us and were so thrilled by our love for one another that they too wanted to be part of this family?
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