Here in the Parish of Mickleham, we encourage each other to extend pastoral care by everyone, to everyone; it is not just the role of the leader to shepherd the flock, for all of us have a part to play. We all should seek to reach out to one other in Christian love.
‘I give you a new command: Love one another. Just as I have loved you, you are also to love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another’ John 13:34-35
One of the benefits of the church community here is that people know one another, and so look out for others, noticing when someone hasn’t been around for a while or hearing news about someone, and then responding, both practically as well as prayerfully.
such initiative is ‘Helping Hands’ which
was set up to offer:
- Transport for visits to doctor’s surgeries or to hospital
- Essential shopping or collection of prescriptions
- Changing library books
- Small tasks, for example changing fuses, altering clocks etc
- Dog walking or care of pets
- Visiting and befriending
- Home cooked meals for local families going through difficult time
Another initiative during Lent this year was the offering of Lent Lunches in the Village Hall and in some local homes. Delicious bread, home-made soups, cheese and good company were in good supply and transport arranged for those who needed it. The lunches offered a great opportunity to meet new friends and deepen relationships with those we already know, whilst enjoying a good meal together. In particular the lunches at the Village Hall were encouraging for many local people to get together, and we thank God that there was a real sense of developing social community together. Although there was no charge people were very generous and £515 was raised which has been given to LeatherHEAD START (formerly Leatherhead Night Hostel).
Social activities play a part too. The Men’s Breakfast on the 3rd Saturday of each month and the Women’s Breakfast on the 4th Saturday provide opportunities for all members of the local community to get together for an enjoyable start to the day, with excellent company and conversation.
Every 4th Monday an afternoon tea is provided with T@3 held in local homes. Delicious home-made refreshments and a selection of teas and coffees are offered to ensure no one goes hungry as people enjoy a good old get together! It is a great time to get to know others we haven’t met before, in addition to renewing existing friendships.
And who could resist the opportunity for an enjoyable drink in the Pop-Up Pub! The Westhumble Chapel, formerly a farmer’s barn, provides a great venue for another community event, where social engagement plays an important part of shared community life. The Pub will be open between 5pm and 10pm on Saturday 16th March and you are welcome to join us. Future dates will be advertised when confirmed.
When we reach out in these ways, and countless others, we demonstrate love, compassion, and generosity towards others, reflecting only what God has already shown to us. One of the primary messages of the Gospel is to serve and help other people, and we delight in seeking to embody these values in our lives and ministries.