World Mission enews: 29 November 2017

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World AIDS Day

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World AIDS Day will take place on 1 December. The theme this year is 'Let's End It'. People across the world will call for an end to the stigma and isolation faced by people living with HIV, and an end to the transmission of the virus itself.

 

HIV Scotland are asking 'What will you do for World AIDS Day 2017?' And are encouraging people to continue taking action throughout the year.

 

You and your congregation can get involved with raising awareness about HIV using various materials available via the Church of Scotland web page. The Church of Scotland HIV Programme raises awareness about HIV and funds for partners around the world who are responding to the causes and consequences of the virus

 

Carol Finlay, Twinning and Local Development Secretary, has written worship materials for the Mission and Discipleship Council's Weekly Worship resources. Here you can find readings, sermon ideas, children's addresses, prayers and music suggestions. More material will become available on the World Mission Council's blog and facebook page soon.

 

Other resources include Souper Sunday and Sundae Sunday, which provide everything you need to hold a service which raises awareness about HIV, and hold a soup lunch (or ice cream sundae lunch!). You can find this here.

 

You are also invited to see the Heart and Soul Swing Band on Sunday 17 December in St John's Parish Church in Hamilton at 6.30pm. All funds raised will go towards the Church of Scotland HIV Programme.

 

 

 

16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence

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The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence began on 25 November, which is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

 

During these 16 Days of Activism, campaigns and awareness raising events will take place to highlight the fact that women in all communities across the world are at risk of facing violence.

 

The Church of Scotland's Violence Against Women task group have sent posters to congregations across Scotland to put up in their women's Toilets. The posters include numbers to phone for help should anyone need it.

 

The World Mission Council has a number of resources available to help congregations understand the impact of violence against women across the world. Find a report and a Bible study here, and our Popular Report, Women in the World Church, here. 

 

Lighting Candles for Peace in the Korean Peninsula

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Lately, the situation on the Korean Peninsula has become increasingly tense and there are growing fears of an armed conflict.

 

On the 1st Sunday of Advent the World Council of Churches (WCC) will invite all member churches to join in a common prayer for the peoples of Korea, and to light a candle for peace.

 

On the 2nd Sunday of Advent, the campaign for peace continues with common prayers for a world freed of nuclear weapons. That same day, 10 December, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) receives the Nobel Peace Prize. The WCC is a long-time partner and supporter of ICANs efforts. 

 

You are invited to share pictures of your candles being lit via Social Media. Find out how to connect with the WCC on Social Media here.

 

Photo: Paul Jeffrey/WCC

 

The Rededication of St Andrews, Cairo

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Last Friday saw the Rededication of St Andrew’s Cairo, a former Church of Scotland building which is now under the supervision of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the USA.  The renovations were completed with significant help from the Salvesen Trust.

 

A flourishing community, St Andrew’s is host not only to an English speaking congregation, but also to 9 refugee congregations, mainly from Sudan, South Sudan, Ethiopia, and Eritrea.  Worship services happen every day of the week, with the church full of refugees singing and dancing, finding comfort and security in the now newly restored building. 

 

One of the most exciting projects of the church is St Andrew’s Refugee Service (StARS), an organisation which provides a place of safety for many of the refugees in Cairo.  There is a school, a nursery, English classes, legal services, Psychological Counselling, Community Support projects, and free meals for 500 children every day. 

 

The service was a celebration of all the good that happens at St Andrew’s.  Officiated by Rev Kirsten Fryer, the current pastor of the Congregation, and assisted by Rev Colin Johnston, our mission partner in Cairo, the service included music from all the different congregations that use St Andrew’s.   The church was full with prayers and blessings led by many of the international visitors as well as by the local pastors and the President of the Protestant Churches in Egypt, Rev Dr Andrea Zaki.

 

 

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Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of those killed in an attack on al-Rawda Mosque in the town of Bir al-Abed, Egypt. It is thought that over 300 people, including 30 children, were killed in a devastating terrorist attack. Please remember the people of Egypt in your prayers, as they grieve, and seek to rebuild. Pray also for peace in the aftermath of such a violent attack.

Events

 

  • 24th of the Month Event. We are joining with Christians around the world to pray for peace in the Middle East on the 24th of each month. We pray with and for our sisters and brothers in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory who have called for an ecumenical prayer vigil across the globe on the 24th of every month. 

    If you are interested in hosting a 24th of the Month event, please contact Carol Finlay from the World Mission Council cfinlay@churchofscotland.org.uk or Val Brown, from Christian Aid, VBrown@christian-aid.org

 

  • You are invited to join The Society of Friends of St. Andrew’s, Jerusalem at their St. Andrew’s Day Centenary Service on Thursday, 30 November 2017 at 2pm. This will take place in St Cuthbert's Parish Church, Edinburgh. Tea and coffee will be served following the service.

 

 

 

Opportunities

 

  • Resources for Christian Aid's Enough for Everyone Christmas appeal are available here.

 

  • The United Mission to Nepal are selling a Christmas card and a 2018 Calendar. Order yours here.

 

 

  • Read Sandy Sneddon's latest blog on his recent trip visiting some of the projects within our partner church, The Church of North India.

 

  • The Church of Scotland has arranged a visit to Palestine and Israel. This will be led by Rev Grant Barclay, Giffnock: Orchardhill, and will take place from 4-14 May 2018. Email: kroger@churchofscotland.org.uk to register your interest or to get more information.

 

  • Read the latest news from the Evangelical Theological Seminary Cairo on Mission Partner Colin Johnston's Blog.

 

  • Read Kate McDonald's blog: revisedontology.com. Kate is a Mission Partner in Tiberias, Israel.

 

  • Read the latest from Mission Partners Keith and Ida Waddell in Zambia on their blog.

 

 

Save Your Christmas Stamps!

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Christmas is coming, and with it, for many, come Christmas cards through the post. Why not save your stamps to go towards our 2017 Stamp Appeal?

 

This year the Church of Scotland’s Stamp Appeal will support The Giffen Institute of Theology (GIT) in South Sudan. GIT of the Presbyterian Church of South Sudan needs books. Having recently relocated to Kakuma, a refugee camp in Kenya, GIT is looking to stock up its library for students. This year’s stamp appeal will help do that.


Help us to support our partner, the PCOSS, through collecting your used stamps which are sold to make money for much needed resources.


For information on how to donate your stamps, click here.

 

Prayer

Consider and answer us, O Lord our God!
Give protection to all those living in fear of death.
Give strength to endure so tragedy will not prevail.
Give guidance to decision makers who are on the ground.
Give compassion to hearts weary with fatigue.

We trust in your steadfast love,
our hearts will rejoice in your salvation,
as we participate in your kingdom restoration praying,
acting and giving bountifully
with all those preparing and repairing
what violence, hurricane, earthquake and flood is destroying.


Amen.