Christian Aid Week 2018 – Mission of the month

Christian Aid Week this year will be from the 13th to 19th May 2018. Our theme is “Together, we are Stronger than Storms” which focuses on the plight of people worldwide facing relentless earthquakes, storms and hurricanes.

In Haiti, seven years on from the devastating earthquake, an estimated 38,000 people are still displaced and more than 40 million people globally are internally displaced but we rarely hear their stories. What’s more they’re often ignored or forgotten by governments. But even if the world has forgotten them, Christian Aid has not. As we come together for this Christian Aid Week, the fight for justice for these people will continue.

Christian Aid stands with the most vulnerable and excluded people of the world – both in times of crisis and for the longer term. They give people survival essentials when they are without shelter or refuge, and help them find the strength and resources they need to flourish and protect themselves from disasters. They support people to stand up for their rights and to build stable, secure lives they can enjoy living.

This year’s events are as follows and if you would like any further information, please contact Julie Campbell on  242 589.

Sunday 13th May:              Cake Sale (after 10:30am Service)

Tuesday 15th May:            10:30am – 12:00noon – Coffee Morning (Barber Rooms)

Saturday 19th May:           7.00pm – Concert at All Saints’

All Week 13th -19th May:    House-to-House Collection

However we are able to support Christian Aid, we’re united in our belief that the world can and must be changed and that we are each called to love our neighbours, every one of our fellow human beings, wildly, wholeheartedly and sacrificially. This is our mission, this is the Jesus mission.

Let’s live it out this Christian Aid Week!

Mission of the Month for April – African Children’s Fund

Kenya was the first country African Children’s Fund worked in and our name there has now become synonymous with our “Porridge Clubs”. These run in eight schools in and around Thika and allow children to take up the free education offered and go to school.

When parents cannot afford to feed their children, they have to work, beg or scavenge for food when they should be at school. The provision of a nutritious porridge meal once a day eliminates this problem entirely.

What’s more, a hungry child struggles to learn or concentrate – so the introduction of “Porridge Clubs” into some of Thika’s most needy schools has produced remarkable results!

Our partner Watoto Kwanza (Children First) reports that:
• Absence rates are down by over 80%
• There are fewer cases of children falling ill due to better nutrition
• The children’s participation in games and physical education activities has improved
• Enrolment within the schools has increased with higher completion and retention rates once enrolled
• Children are achieving better results in their exams

Through Watoto Kwanza, we provide the schools with a basic kitchen, water and cooking utensils. After that the schools receive a supply of a nutritiously fortified porridge each month so the children receive a school meal each day. Some of the schools have planted their own kitchen gardens and are supplementing the porridge with fresh vegetables and beans.

Watoto Kwanza and African Children’s Fund are currently supplying 1,550 mugs of porridge each school day. This equates to 7,750 mugs each week which results in an incredible 93,000 mugs of porridge every school term! Impressive numbers, we’re sure you’ll agree!

Mission of the Month for March – Faringdon Family Centre

Faringdon Family Centre is run under the auspices of CTiF with a committee made up of members of all the churches including Mairead Boyce, Maureen Courtney, Val Jones, Mary Valente, Jill Heady & Jeni Summerfield.
It is responsible for running a Breakfast Club at the Junior School with a paid leader, a member of the School’s Support staff and a number of volunteers.
It also operates the local Food Bank, with the support of church volunteers.
The Family Centre should not be confused with the Children’s Centre that used to operate in the Baptist Church until local authority funding was withdrawn in 2017. Work is underway to set up a new Children’s Centre project with assistance from Spurgeons, who were instrumental in the formation of the original centre. This initiative is supported by the Town Council, CTiF and the Pump House Project. We hope to have news of progress in the near future.
For more information about the Family Centre contact Jeni Summerfield (240 912)

Mission of the Month for February: Interserve

Our Vision

To see lives and communities transformed through encounter with Jesus Christ.

Our Purpose

To make Jesus Christ known through holistic ministry, in partnership with the global church, amongst the neediest peoples of Asia and the Arab World.

The story of Interserve

In 1820 it was estimated that out of a population of 40 million women in India, only 400 could read and write. That’s just one woman in every 100,000.

For many of these women life was spent shut away from the world in a secluded woman’s quarters, called “Zenanas”. Marriage at just 13 or 14 was not uncommon for them, neither was her husband’s death. This left her two choices. To die with him by horrifically throwing herself onto his funeral pyre or choosing a life of seclusion in the Zenana, hidden from the world.

In 1852, responding to a plea by Mrs Mackenzie, an English merchant Lady Mary Jane Kinnaird founded the Calcutta Normal School in the United Kingdom. It’s task: to train Indian Christian women to go into the Zenana to teach those there to read and write. She had written that “If we can give the women of India the power to read, and the Book to read, God will bless His Word.”

By 1950,100 years after its initial founding, the British mission accepted its first male missionary. Shortly after, in 1957, the name was changed to the Bible & Medical Mission Fellowship (BMMF), auxiliary committees were formed across the Commonwealth, and the international fellowship emerged.

In 1976 it became known as Interserve and has continued to send those with hearts like Mrs MacKenzie to serve where there is a need – from doctors and nurses, to teachers, and those with technical and practical skills.

To find out more about this story and others, go to

For more information about Interserve contact Janet Deane  (241 145)

Mission of the month for January: WATSAN

WATSAN: WATer for life; SANitation for dignity

Achievements of 2017

3,286 new beneficiaries
241 people trained to maintain facilities
12 new tanks
22 news tap-stands
9,025 metres of new pipe laid
250 new washing shelters
349 education sessions
205 new latrines and urinals
Work done by Ugandans for Ugandans

So – how do we help?
We pay the salaries of the Ugandan team
We contribute to the cost of materials, e.g. concrete
We can be proud to be partners

For more information visit

Mission of the Month for December: The Children’s Society

The Church of England Children’s Society is a leading national charity dedicated to providing vital help and support for those who are affected by disadvantage and discrimination in their daily lives. Children who are unable to cope, feel unsafe and are unable to find the support, help or understanding they need. The Society also helps those with learning difficulties, disabled children and children in care.

The Society’s Project Workers help children with their problems by listening, supporting and acting to change their lives, working with children one-to-one and in groups to help them stay safe and re-build their lives when the worst has happened to them.

Last year the Society’s Project Workers helped over 13,000 young people across the country and have changed the lives of millions of young people through its campaigning and lobbying work and so far 27 councils have agreed to support those leaving care by providing council tax exemptions.

Its campaigning work is bringing real, lasting change to many lives. Its partnership with businesses, councils and fund-raising bodies is continuing to bring results that allow thousands of vulnerable children to flourish.

The Society’s annual Good Childhood Report, launched last month, produced in partnership with the University of York, revealed very many serious problems which are making young people feel worried – fear of crime, living in a family struggling to pay the bills, etc. The report also shows that too many children don’t feel safe, loved or able to cope.

Your continuing help enables the Society to do its work in reaching out to those in great need. Thanks to your support many young people have been able to access the social, physical and financial resources they need to help them with the issues they are facing. Without your help so many young lives would not have changed for the better.

Very many thanks for your loyalty and support of this worthy cause. It is greatly appreciated.

Hazel Catling
242 355

Mission of the Month for November: TearFund

Tearfund’s mission continues, working with its partners world wide they are seriously involved in South Sudan, and the whole of East Africa where a shortage of food, has, according to the United Nations brought about a humanitarian crisis, the largest since the Second World War.

Unfortunately like all charity and mission funds they are overwhelmed with requests. The latest is from Myanmar, where Tearfund is in contact with COAST, supplying water, sanitation, food, shelter and medical aid for the thousands of refugees coming into Bangladesh.

However for every pound we give for the Christmas Appeal, up until the 31st December, the UK Government will match pound-for-pound.

So PLEASE PICK UP A LEAFLET AND PRAYER DIARY from the Mission Table in Church and use during NOVEMBER.

Many thanks,
Audrey Jefferies

For more information visit

Mission of the Month for October: Bible Society

For over 200 years Bible Society has been working to bring the Bible to life; to help people around the world engage with it, relate to it, and make sense of it.

For us, this means specifically the work of the Open The Book Team, led by the Revd Barbara Mapley, on behalf of Churches Together in Faringdon.  Every fortnight, as part of a carefully designed programme, the team acts out a Bible story for over 500 children in three performances.   We use a collection of Bible stories specially written for performance, with the full approval of OFSTED and SIAMS for presentation in schools across our multi-faith country.  Currently, there are over 2500 schools nationwide on the programme.

For the charity, the aim of the mission to bring the Bible to life drives a huge range of activities. In some parts of the world, bringing the Bible to life focuses on translation and distribution projects. Elsewhere it focuses on leadership training, or literacy programmes, or interfaith dialogue. Closer to home, in England and Wales, it focuses on advocacy effort, schools outreach and devotional resources.

The Bible Society is doing everything it can to help individuals and communities to engage with the Bible because we believe that when they do, lives can change – for good.

Peter Foot

Mission of the month for September – Scripture Union

How can they hear if nobody tells them?  (Romans 10:14)

Estimates suggest that 95% of children and young people in England and Wales don’t have regular contact with a church. Scripture Union believes that every child should have the opportunity to explore and respond to the good news of the Bible.

Scripture Union was established as a charity over 140 years ago and now works in more than 120 countries with children, young people and families. The purpose is to encourage people of all ages to meet God every day through the Bible and prayer, with the goal of helping people to grow in Christian maturity and become not only committed church members but also servants of a world in need.

Today in the UK they respond in innovative and exciting ways to encourage younger members of society to explore what a faith in Jesus might look like for them. For example, they organise a wide range of holidays throughout the school break and they estimate that this year over 1,400 children and young people will attend – they ask that we pray for them all, and the leaders and volunteers, that they will have fun in a safe environment and feel God’s presence.

Another example of the outreach in the coming months is the annual Light Party, an alternative to Hallowe’en celebrations. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. (John 1:5)

The organisation also offers us suggestions about how to talk to children about Jesus: be yourself, keep it short, pray, stick to your theme, keep it simple and just do it!

We can support Scripture Union physically by holding activities or using any of their resources, financially through donations and prayerfully each day.

Kate Butcher

For more information visit