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The Terrorism in London and Manchester and the Grenfell Tower Tragedy:  Recent terrorist attacks in Westminster, Manchester, London Bridge, the fire at the Kensington Tower Block and the tube bomb at Parsons Green have led a number of our congregation to ask what the church can do and why all this has happened.  It's difficult to give an answer, but we can be sure that God is there alongside those who suffer and we can pray that he will give support as necessary.  This poem, written by a local resident, has helped some people:

Why do bad things happen
When You could intervene?
It makes me feel such sadness
My heart is crushed within
There are so many questions
The pain is hard to bear
I ask that all who hurt, Lord
Will really know You're there

When we feel like crying
And it all seems so unfair
Please hold us in Your arms, Lord
And show us that You care
'Man of Sorrows' You are called
Our distress You understand
So please be there beside us
Holding out Your hand.

Written by Jane Smith

Inquisitive?  - A series of three evenings to discuss the big - and not so big - questions of life:  Life can be chaotic and a chance to stop and think is a rare thing.  Inquisitive? is a joint initiaitive with St Francis, St Mary's and St John's Churches.  It's a discussion-based evening for people outside the church, where they can explore some of the questions of life.  Things like, ‘Can you live a good life without God?’ and ‘Is truth a straight - jacket or a liberator?’  It's being held on Thursday evening 7th December from 8pm to 10pm in 'SJ's' 56 Croydon Road, Coney Hall.  Please think of people you would like to invite and make them aware of the date.  This is the third session, but don't worry if you missed the first two - do come along on 7th December.

A Place of Welcome:  St Francis Church is open as a place of welcome every Friday morning from 10am to 12 noon.  This is an opportunity for people to talk with others.  WiFi, drinks and toys are always available.  We hope that all who visit will find a sense of belonging. 

Matchbox Theatre:  'Jumpy' by April De Angelis will be performed on 30th November and 1st and 2nd December in St Francis Hall commencing at 7.30pm.  The box office number is 0845 680 4568.

Advent Course:  St Francis, St Mary's, Emmanuel URC and West Wickham Methodist Church are holding a joint Advent Course this year.  It is based on a book called 'Walking Backwards to Christmas' written by Stephen Cottrell (Bishop of Chelmsford) which, uniquely, tells the Christmas story backwards in a series of eleven first person monologues starting with Anna at the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple and ending with Moses at the Burning Bush.  It is planned to study four of the monologues - Anna, Elizabeth, Isaiah and Moses.  The paperback version of the book can be purchased from SPCK or Church House Bookshop priced £7.99 or as a Kindle e-book for £3.99.  The course will be held on Tuesday evenings 5th, 12th and 19th December from 7.30pm to 9pm and repeated on Thursday mornings 7th, 14th and 21st December from 10.30am to 12noon.  The venues are as follows:  5th at St Francis, 7th at St Marys, 12th and 14th at Hawes Lane Methodist Church  and 19th and 21st at Emmanuel Church, The Grove.  Do come along and use this course as a preparation for Christmas.

Regular Family Events:  There are regular Family Events held at St Francis, St Mary's and St John's.  For details of regular events for all the family click here

Donations for Croydon Refugee Day Centre:  Non perishable foods and items of clothing for the refugees can be left in the box at the back of the church.   For more information about the centre click here

Donations for Good Shepherd Mission to The Homeless:  The project needs items of men's clothing especially shirts, T-shirts, trousers/jeans, hats, scarves and shoes.  If you have any of these items to spare, please speak to Brian Griffiths.  For more information on the mission please click here

Latest news from our link parish in Zimbabwe click here.  For news of the Croydon/Zimbabwe Link click here

Prayer Ministry - for more detail click here