As our ncounter project in the summer drew to a close there was a real sense that we needed to continue doing similar activities to serve our community. Mark Paton and the members of Laburnam Road Community Church felt very much the same and we concluded that by collaborating we would be able to do more than we could alone. As a result, various plans were put into action, two of which we have recently seen happening here at Carley. 
In October, we carried out a free car wash in our car park, something that during ncounter had been particularly effective. Armed with buckets, sponges and car shampoo we set about cleaning what seemed like all the cars, taxis and vans of the entire estate! There was no doubt that this was a popular service and the cars just kept coming. At times, we had to remove our excellent team of publicists from the front as they were attracting more cars than we could deal with in one go. Meanwhile, several other members of our team were out and about doing various gardening projects for people living on the estate. As you can imagine, the day was an exhausting one; but there was no doubt that it was worthwhile. To have the chance to chat to people from the estate and to show the church in action, loving and serving others, was a real privilege.
 
A few weeks later, in November, we transformed the church into a venue for a Family Fun Day. With the help of a bouncy castle, several gazebos and lots of fantastic volunteers, we were ready to provide an afternoon of activities and food for children and their parents. It was one of those occasions when you have no idea what is going to happen! It was impossible to predict whether anyone would even turn up. All we could do was be faithful in serving God and then allow Him to take charge. The morning was wet and miserable, but as we began to set up, the sun came out and it stayed that way for the rest of the day. This was clearly God's doing as it meant that a good number of people were walking past Carley during the afternoon and as a result, came in to see what was on offer. As well as activities for children, there was a BBQ and the cafe was open providing a space for parents and other adults to sit and take some time out. God certainly exceeded my expectations on that day, we had far more people coming in than I had anticipated and taught me yet again, how much more faith I ought to have.

I know that we have already said this, but thanks once again to everyone who came along, helped out, provided and cooked food, or lent us various things. Without your help, these events would not have been possible. God wants to use us as a church to show Jesus to those around us. Let's see what He has in store for us next!

Rachel Furze

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 *Carley will be supporting the World Outreach Church witness on Bushy Park on Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th December, 1.00 till 4.00pm. It will be an opportunity to invite people to our candlelight Carol Service and our Christmas Morning Service. We will also distribute a DVD to interested contacts. For further information please see the deacons.

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 Thank you to everyone who brought shoeboxes to church for Operation Christmas Child. Your boxes were taken to Queniborough School 140 shoeboxes were collected altogether. Our shoeboxes will be going to Romania this year. The shoeboxes begun their journey to Romania in a lorry on Friday 27th November.

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 Congratulations to Betty Cobley for being awarded the volunteer of the of the year award for her work with WRVS - Women's Royal Voluntary Service at the Leicester Royal Infirmary. Betty flew to Glasgow on Wednesday 25th November with her manager for the award ceremony.

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 John and Jeanie Fennell

God has supplied all our needs in His time and way!Burlington Bible Church, in Burlington, Maine, USA (halfway between Bangor and Lincoln), has called John to be their interim pastor for 6 months. He will begin December 1st. The people are very dear. They have provided a lovely parsonage for us to move into the week after Thanksgiving. We will resign from Christar on December 31, 2009. Thanks for your prayers and support during these months of transition.

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Mission Worship Conference

Eastbourne, 13th - 15th November 2009

On Friday 13th November, Annette and myself made our way down to Eastbourne for a conference. We left about 10.30am and broke the journey up with coffee and lunch, arriving there after 3 o’clock. We booked into the Travel Lodge and after meeting up with Annette’s sister, Marguerite and 2 others from her church, Jeff and Rachel, we made our way to register for the event.

The whole weekend was very well run and there were plenty of Seminars to go to. We started with an early bird seminar at 6.00pm followed by the Main Celebration and Teaching session at 7.30pm. Needless to say there were some extremely talented musicians there and great speakers. For those with more energy there was a late night worship session at 10.30pm. We decided instead to go in search of a chip shop and that’s how the first day ended by eating fish and chips at 11.00pm. We thought it needed to be done as we were at the seaside!

Saturday followed a similar busy pattern of main celebration and teaching at 9.45am, lunch and then the choice of many seminars at 3 time slots. These included such things as vocal master classes, guitar workshops, learning new songs, using the Bible in worship, what is the song content and does it matter, including children in worship etc. We all met up again at 6.00pm for an Italian meal. The evening ended with a main celebration at 7.30pm. The late night worship was led by Stuart Townsend but again we wandered back to the accommodation. We didn’t do fish and chips on the way, as we were still full from tea.

Sunday started with an early bird seminar at 9.30am. The event ended with a main celebration at 11.00am, led by Graham Kendrick. For me the celebration times were a little taste of heaven. It was so encouraging to see so many Christians coming together to sing praises. There was a real buzz of happiness throughout the weekend. It was nice to make new friends and even whilst waiting for seminars and celebrations to begin I got talking to so many interesting people. It was just like a re-fueling station. I’m sure both Annette and myself came back with lots of ideas and information about how worshipping our God can lead into so many opportunities for mission.

Sue Taylor .