From the September Grapevine

 From this month's Grapevine,

 our parish magazine.

Copies available (50p) at the back of church or why not have it delivered every month?

See Susan Warrington or contact the church office.

A letter from Revd Francis Cooke at Harvest-time

I'm always encouraged by the way young people are often so important in spreading the good news about Jesus. In John Chapter Six a young lad had come with a great crowd to listen to this amazing man, Jesus. But how were they going to feed them all? Andrew spoke up. "There's a boy here. He's got some barley loaves & a few fish. But that won't get us far."

This young lad gave away his picnic lunch to the men, who gave it to Jesus. Jesus told them all to sit down, gave thanks to his Heavenly Father and told the disciples to distribute the food. There was more than enough to feed the whole crowd.

Those disciples were concerned for the crowd's welfare, but they didn't know what to do to feed them. It took a young lad who gave away all he had to Jesus and the situation was transformed. At harvest time we are reminded that God gives us so much. Indeed "God will supply all our needs in Christ Jesus". We thank God for the 'harvest' of that day...and the harvests of food in our day. We also thank God for the harvest of souls throughout the world today.

A nine year old Welsh girl, over 200 years ago, loved hearing the Bible read in the chapel she attended with her mother every Sunday morning. She thought, 'I wish I could read this book for myself, and even have one of my own'. Mary couldn't read. One Sunday the minister announced that a school would soon be opening in the village. Over the months Mary learnt to read. After one service she said to her mother, "Mum, I want a Bible of my own. I must have a Bible". Her mother said, "But Mary, Bibles are expensive and we haven't much money." So Mary spent the next six long years saving every penny. Then Mr.Evans, the school headmaster, told her that there was a man in Bala who had a number of Bibles. Mary told her mother that she was going to walk to Bala some 26 miles away.

The journey seemed endless, but eventually, one evening she saw the town of Bala laid out before her. After knocking on a number of doors she found the right house. The door opened and her words spilled out. "I've been saving up for six years; I've walked 26 miles; please can I buy a Bible?" "I'm so sorry," said Mr Charles "all the Bibles have gone but if you stay two or three days we will have some more." She was given lodgings and the Bibles arrived. To her amazement Mary was then given three Bibles for her family for the price of one. When she got home she murmured"Thank you Jesus, thank you Mr Charles".

In Bala Mr Charles began to think of all the other Marys there must be in Wales, in England, in Scotland and in Ireland. Then he began to think of other more distant lands. In 1804 the British and Foreign Bible Society was formed by Thomas Charles.

That lad trusted Jesus when his picnic was taken. Mary Jones trusted the Lord when it seemed impossible to buy a Bible. We need to learn to trust in the Lord when things seem to go wrong or when life becomes difficult. I love that verse in Proverbs Chapter 3 verse 5: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight." I wonder how many millions of Bibles have been given away by the Bible Society. How many millions of people have come to know the Lord partly because of the determination of one young girl to possess her own Bible. A truly spiritual harvest.

Yours in Christ,

Francis Cooke