Author: Ann Harris

January Newsletter

Dear Friends, Well, 2020 is upon us! Certainly this new year already feels more challenging than most as we look into the unknown future which Brexit will bring, watch the terrifying consequences of global warming in the Australian bushfires and hear the alarming reports following the recent assassination of an Iranian general. In view of the three challenges noted above, it seems very timely that one of our coMPass courses this Spring will be looking at “what the Bible says…” in relation to church/state relationships, the environment and war and peace amongst other things. Alongside that, we will be running...

ROC Conversation Milton Keynes

John Robertson writes: “Please find below details of 4 events in February run by Redeeming our Communities (ROC). We believe that these will be very useful events in connecting all sorts of community activity for the common good together creatively and well. This is a real opportunity for churches to be contributing to the wellbeing of the city and thus working towards our vision, MK: a City Alive to God.” Find out more about ROC on their website – www.roc.uk.com                                              ...

Spring coMPass – New Year, New Term!

We are delighted to offer 3 courses this term: What the Bible Says About Monday Evenings at Christ the Vine, Coffee Hall Starting 17th February Tutor: Steve Chilcraft Applying our faith to the complexities of C.21st life is a constant challenge. Christians do not always agree how to apply the teaching of the Bible to the modern world.  How should we use Scripture to shape our approach to the complex moral and ethical challenges we face?  The team of Steve Chilcraft, John Robertson and Peter Ballantine will examine what the Bible does (or does not) say on six major issues:...

December Newsletter

Dear Friends, Christmas is coming….so it must be election time!! If you were hoping to escape the political turmoil with tinsel and turkey, think again. This Christmas, for good or ill, we will be plunged into certainly the most contentious general election in my lifetime: politics has intruded into fun and frivolity with a vengeance. It seems almost sacrilegious. Perhaps we have become too seduced by the kitsch of Christmas with its baubles and sleigh bells, its stars and angels and kings and shepherds that we have buried the political reality from which it emerged. The Romans knew what Christmas...

November Newsletter

Dear Friends, I found myself at the launch of the Vital Signs report for 2019 recently. For those of you who haven’t come across Vital Signs before, it is an annual report on the key social indicators in Milton Keynes published by MK Community Foundation. The report makes interesting reading for anyone concerned with mission, as the picture of Milton Keynes that it paints is a major part of the backdrop against which mission takes place. Of particular interest this year, I noted the 84 Syrian refugees settled in MK since 2015, something in which the churches have taken a...

October Newsletter

Dear Friends, Did you make it to the Amazing Pilgrimage that walked from Christ the Cornerstone to Olney in celebration of the 240th anniversary of probably the world’s best known hymn: John Newton’s Amazing Grace? I wimped out and joined the walk at Sherington, which was a lot shorter! At the final service in Olney, which saw the church packed out, we reflected on Newton’s life and legacy, his involvement in the slave trade, his discovery of the grace of God shown in Jesus which turned his life around and made him a powerful advocate for the abolition of the...

Learning Hub : July Assembly follow up

At our July Assembly we discussed the idea of a Learning Hub for MK. Since then, I have been looking at what was said and sharing it with others so that it can inform our way forward. As part of the analysis, I constructed the word picture below, which gives a good visual sense of what came across as important. My September newsletter gives the headlines of the analysis. A good deal of work is, of course, being done behind the scenes, but we will also want to continue to consult with you as the project develops. Blessings John

Amazing Grace Pilgrimage Walk and Concert

The organising committee of the Amazing Grace Pilgrimage Walk, marking the 240th anniversary of the word-famous hymn Amazing Grace, invite you to take part in this wonderful celebration by walking from the Church of Christ the Cornerstone in Central MK to Olney, the home of Amazing Grace (11 miles) to mark a truly international hymn and, at the same time, raise funds for good causes in Milton Keynes and abroad. All the details, including registration, can be found here.  There will be a special service at St Peter and Paul Church Olney to mark the conclusion of the Pilgrimage Walk. The service will begin...

coMPass – Autumn 2019 – Bookings now open!

  We are now taking bookings for our Autumn coMPass courses. Leading for a Change, led by our Director of Ecumenical Mission John Robertson, is our programme designed to equip and empower you as a Christian to bring about positive change through missional projects. The kinds of change envisaged lie within two broad categories: Change initiated together with community partners. This may have a focus on the 3rd, 4th and 5th Marks of Mission Change which initiates new missional projects within the church The course adopts a community organising model developed by Citizens:MK within a Christian framework by which Christian...

September Newsletter

Dear Friends, Firstly, a big thank you to all of you who made the time to come to the last Assembly where we explored together the idea of a Learning Hub. I hope you found the event as stimulating and as useful as I did. From my point of view, it was really helpful to get a feel for what you think is important and to test our ideas against that. I am happy (and somewhat relieved!) to report that there is considerable overlap between what we think we need to be doing and what you told us. We can...