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AN UPDATE FROM GEORGE, Friday 26th June:

Dear Church Family,

A warm welcome to St Thomas’s Kendal!
 
This week we welcome Vic and Martin Sekasi and baby Annabella as Vic begins her Curacy with us at St Thomas’s.  Vic is initially licensed as a parish worker from July 1st, and then will be ordained Deacon in Carlisle Cathedral on 26th September – the ordinations have been delayed because of lockdown.  We are really looking forward to getting to know the family and the blessing of their gifts and Vic’s leadership both at St Thomas’s and in the wider Mission Community of churches in the Two Valleys.  
 
At the online service this Sunday we will welcome and introduce them, and of course in the months ahead there will be lots of opportunities for us to meet them and get to know each other.  Please do continue to pray for them as they begin this new chapter of life and ministry. 
 
Opening Church 
This week we will be open again for individual personal prayer, but only on Monday 10am-12pm because we have a funeral at church on Thursday.  Access is via the main door, hand sanitising and social distancing apply.  The break between times of access to the building allows us a 72 hour period without public use of the building to help prevent infection.  Please feel free to pop in on Monday and enjoy the space for prayer. 
 
The government announcement that churches can now open for weddings with up to 30 guests and for worship services from 4thJuly is really welcome.  As yet, no further guidance has been issued nationally to clarify details for Sunday worship, and so this won’t mean a return to our building on July 5th, but it does mean plans are underway to work out what a safe, phased return may look like from July onwards.  (Fittingly Patience is our fruit of the Spirit this week!)  More information will follow next week.  
 
New Wine Online this summer – United Breaks Out  
Save the dates – July 30th to August 3rd: five days of inspiring teaching for all, fun-filled connections for kids and youth, and seminar streams to inspire us all in this next season.  Details to follow next week!
 
This Sunday 
We meet on Sunday at 10am on Youtube and new Facebook  – please come and join in!  After the service why not come for a coffee on Zoom and catch up with each other. You can get the Zoom link details by contacting the office.
 
Worship Time ­– online over the weekend we will post an extended worship set onto our Facebook and YouTube pages.  Bill has recorded it for us and words are available as a PDF here on this website - just click here to download a PDF lyric sheet.  We can access the set anytime to worship and enjoy God’s presence – thank you Bill!
 
Facebook – please check out the new “STK Church” Facebook page to carry church news, information and broadcasts in place of the group page which has hosted these.  This page will act as a simpler communication platform to access church activity, media and information and welcome inquiries.  You can find and follow the page here
 
Fruit of the Spirit
This week we consider PATIENCE as the fruit of the Spirit in our lives – and how we can cultivate it…. 
 
To begin, let’s return to the image of the Vine in John 15.1-17: how do we cultivate and strengthen our connection with Jesus?  What, practically, does abiding in Christ look like?  This is surely a key to cultivating patience. 
Why do we need patience?  Some experience of delay and waiting is probably what demands it of us.  But patience isn’t passively waiting – there are lots of processes involved.  What enables us to wait, to process pain, to live with mystery and uncertainty, to sustain hope, and cultivate trust?  How do we actively embrace the work of the Spirit which produces patience in us?   

We might quite readily think of why we need to have and to demonstrate patience, but what can our patience enable in situations, and in the lives and experiences of people around us – how is our patience a partnership with God for others?   
 
With love,
 
George