In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshipped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed. Daniel 7:13-14
On Sunday we celebrated the Feast of Christ the King, a relatively new Christian celebration instituted by Pope Pius 11th in 1925 to combat secularism and nationalism. These verses prophesy the coming King, the longed-for Messiah.
Next Sunday is Advent Sunday - the Church's official start of the countdown to Christmas, despite the shops introducing it sometime back in October! How sad that a festival which celebrates a baby born in a manger has become so associated with materialism.
At Christmas we remember the baby Jesus, born in a humble stable; at Easter the crucified carpenter, dying for us; and now we have Christ the King - he has conquered death and reigns forever.
Jesus, as the Servant King, shows us a new way to live, teaches us to love one another, to put others first - his willingness to become the most humble on earth, has shown us how to live on earth and has provided the way for us to join his kingdom in heaven.
Before handing Jesus over to be crucified, Pilate famously asked him, 'What is truth?' Perhaps we all need to ask ourselves that question as we start to think about celebrating the humble birth of a baby born over 2,000 years ago in a small middle eastern town in a Roman outpost?
What is the truth of his birth, his life, his death and resurrection? Is he the King that he claimed to be and more importantly, do we acknowledge him as our King, do we listen to his voice and follow his commands?
What is truth for you today?
Lord, help us to know the truth of who Jesus is, to claim him as King of our lives and strive to live as he did: putting others first, speaking words of kindness and healing to all those we meet and loving You and our neighbours as ourselves. Amen.
Hilary Swift, 22nd November 2021
St. James' Church is now open daily. Please do come in and enjoy our beautiful church when you are passing. Look at the Diary here for schedule of services.
You can see here some that would have been heard at Saint James' and other Benefice churches, including all the weekly thoughts that you see here. Also, you can see from Coldharbour here.
Tony Berry, the Rector since 1993, retired at the end of September 2021. See the page for information and updates on appointing his replacement.
Press Ctrl+F5 to refresh this page so you see the latest. See Site Map for all the information available on this site (parish registers, history, pictures, music etc.). Click on the address header to see a random page.
As you will gather as you browse over these pages, we are a church with a long history and, as a community, Abinger goes back even further. Even if we take the Domesday Book as a start point, we have been a Christian worshipping community for a very long time. So, we are very proud of our church building. It has had a very chequered history, not least in the 20th Century. But now we are doing our best to meet the challenges of the 21st both for our building and church community.
Worship, praise, prayer and the reading of God's word are all part of our regular Sunday services, and if you are ever passing and would like to join us, we'd love to see you and make you feel welcome. But we don't believe that our church building any more than our faith, is just for Sundays. We are always looking for ways which enable the building to be a community resource during the week. We use the church for a Café morning on Wednesdays in term time from 8.30am until 10.00am. We also believe in developing our understanding of the Christian faith, so we meet in small groups to study what practical things the Bible has to say about living out the Christian faith in today's world.
Again, if you would like to join us you are more than welcome; you should be able to find the dates somewhere on the website, failing that then do by all means get in touch. Thank you for visiting the website; I hope you find it helpful, informative and enjoyable, and we look forward to giving you more than a virtual welcome when you visit us for real!
Tony Berry, Rector
Tony Berry retired at the end of September 2021. See the page for information and updates on appointing his replacement.
Click on a diary entry for more information - including links for Zoom servives.
For more details of music in (sung) services, see the Services page.
If you have appropriate rights, click the +GoogleCalendar icon above to edit calendar entries. See page for larger