Serving the community....

There are many ways in which, as Christians, we may be active in serving God in our communities…

What kind of things does your church do to help others and be the hands and voice of Jesus in our world?

Why not get in touch with me, Sara Iles at FCG, to share your films, good news stories and ideas? Email me at: 

As part of our aim to feature the work of FCG member churches / groups

HERE is a link to a film made by the Congregational Federation to celebrate the winners of their 2018 Serving the Community Awards.

Watch the films HERE 

"So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you’re already doing this; just keep on doing it."

1 Thessalonians 5 from The Message 

Let us pray...

Here is a prayer from the Pray for Schools network to share and pray together:


Please comfort children who have been subjected to cruelty and exploitation and set them free from feelings of shame and worthlessness – as well as the painful effects of physical, sexual and emotional abuse.

Draw them close to those who can help them find healing for their wounded lives.


You can find out more about Pray for Schools HERE

Date for your diary - Pray Day for Schools 20th November 2018 

Supporting schools through prayer... 

Refuel your imagination…

As part of our goal to feature articles from groups and denominations in the FCG, may I share this empowering and heartening story from the Congregational Federation

Hawick Congregational Community Church, in the Scottish borders, have been working with the younger members of their community to refuel imaginations... Families at the Hawick Congregational Community Church Playgroup - Toddlers Together - recently enjoyed a themed session with an imaginative difference – BOX DAY. The church says, "At Toddlers Together we strive not only for fun to take place, but also learning, both socially and educationally, as well as messiness and contained chaos!"

The Play Co-ordinator at the church, Stephanie Logan, explains... "For the last three years I have planned activity programmes which allow room for creative learning and co-playing with parents and peers for new-borns to four-year olds. Having these themed sessions also embeds routine and excitement in the group and, with a different activity taking place each week, we’re always looking at play and learning differently." It sounds like a simple idea, that is easily achievable, and don't we often say, younger children have more fun with the box than the gift...! You can read the full story HERE

What not try something like this in your church? 

Please join us as we pray for all the ideas which our youth and children's workers have the courage to explore and for the thriving and playful imaginations in our children and toddlers! 

Matthew 18:2-5 The Message (MSG). "Jesus called over a child, whom he stood in the middle of the room, and said, “I’m telling you, once and for all, that unless you return to square one and start over like children, you’re not even going to get a look at the kingdom, let alone get in. Whoever becomes simple and elemental again, like this child, will rank high in God’s kingdom. What’s more, when you receive the childlike on my account, it’s the same as receiving me."


Moving on, with hope…

Transitions at any stage of life can be difficult.

When we think back in our own lives, when we moved house, church or job, we probably encountered challenges and hard times. Those young people who are making plans to start university this year, may have many worries and concerns about such a big life change. This is made even more complex if the young adult has mental health challenges. You can read an article HERE about Elliot who talks of his experiences and get some ideas on how to cope with this transition.

The Free Churches Group have been committed to supporting our member churches to actively engage with the Higher Education (HE) sector. You can read more about our Hope in HE work HERE.

The Student Christian Movement have some useful resources to support young people who are moving on to university - you can see these HERE. You can also order a support pack at this link so if you are moving on to uni or know a young person who is, this may be useful.

I am grateful to Revd Cassandra Howes, Co-ordinating Chaplain, at University of Bedfordshire, for this link. Cass serves on the FCG HE Working Group - for further information and to read the FCG reports on HE see HERE.

Praying at a new level…

Thousands of young people, up and down the country, are getting ready to sit their GCE Advanced (A) Level exams at schools and further education (FE) providers. You may have children, Godchildren, nieces or nephews of your own who are busy revising.... or you may know of young people in your church and community who are awaiting the start of these... or you may just wish to be part of the wave of prayer surrounding all young people across the nation at this challenging time... Join us as we pray for them, as they prepare for and sit these important exams... 

Let us pray. Loving God, we ask to bless and uphold all those who are preparing for and sitting GCE A Level exams this year.

We ask that you give them courage and wisdom in their endeavours. We pray that you will sustain their teachers and exam invigilators in supporting the students and conducting the exams with integrity and diligence.

Living God, we know that this can be a time of stress and challenge, so we humbly ask for Christ's peace to prevail for all at this time. We pray that each and every student will be able to perform to the best of his or her ability. 

May they all know the courage and grace of God and bring to mind the passage from Philippians... "For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength." 

We ask all this in the name of Jesus, our teacher and friend, Amen

You can find out more information about Christian groups who work with FE students by checking out Festive HERE

Scripture reference from the New Living Translation - Philippians 4:13