When we hear the call to ‘give to Church’ or the word ‘stewardship’ many immediately think we are about to hear an appeal for money. Of course churches need money to keep going. St Chrysostom’s is not a financially wealthy congregation, and we need to pay bills!
HOWEVER, as a member of our lovely church community recently said, ‘We may not be rich fiancially but we are rich in the lovely people we have…’ Too true!
Recently we have been delighted to receive some unasked for gifts at Church. Over the coming weeks, here on our church blog, we’ll tell you about some of them, and we feel sure you will be both surprised and heartened. These are somewhat difficult days, not least for churches wondering about the Post Covid future. Gifts encourage us in our day to day work and the love behind them inspires us on our christian journey in life.
First of all, earlier in the summer we received the gift of a box full of varied crosses and crucifixes from the CHN Sisters. The sisters were downsizing as they moved to their new convent in Hessle and in the process gave us some gifts. They included the sanctuary chairs we now use at the main altar, several Bibles – which we offer to those unable to buy their own, and also a box of crosses.
We invited Confirmation candidates at the Confirmation a few weeks ago to take a cross home and now we are inviting households of our church family to take one free of charge. One or two of the crosses were damaged but Maryam has kindly cleaned them all and repaired those in need of repair. We now have over 25 crosses. We begin to offer the crosses on the Sunday after the Feast of the Holy Cross – a feast which encourages us to rejoice in the glorious saving work of Our Lord.
The crosses are blessed, and freely offered. We are making a couple of conditions.
First of all we ask those taking to take one of their choice and not to take for anyone else (we are giving priority to those who are at church and able to choose for their own home).
Secondly, we ask those who take them to think carefully about where they will place them prominently where they live – in a hallway, perhaps, above a door, in a bedroom, or on a desk or table. Where is, of course, up to the person, but we are hoping they will be prominent – and the person having the cross can say where it has come from to anyone who asks. We hope the person will keep the cross for many years.
Although we are giving them freely, and emphasise that, should anyone wish to give a donation we will receive it to enable us to get more similar crosses for the future.
THANK YOU to the sisters of the Community of the Holy Name for this gift, let’s assure them they will be a blessing and have good homes.