I am

On Thursday night I spoke at the Royal Holloway Christian union on Jesus’ words in John 8:58, “Before Abraham was born, I am!”  This is Jesus claiming, in a clear and unambiguous way, to be the Almighty, Sovereign, Creator God.  In our culture, and especially in student culture, a claim like this is offensive and arrogant.  Jesus’ claim to be all life, all truth, the only way to God is not a popular message.  But, even though it isn’t popular, it is true.

Later, I was thinking how this links with Ephesians in our current sermon series.  We saw on Sunday in the second half of chapter 1 that Paul prays they will know God better.  And the question is—how do we know God better?  The answer from Paul is that they will know the hope to which they’ve been called, the riches of his glorious inheritance, and his incomparably great power.  All of those things that Paul prays they will know are entirely wrapped up in the person and work of Jesus.  Knowing Jesus, Almighty God, the great “I am!” is the simple answer to how we will know God better.  The whole of the Bible points us to the Lord Jesus Christ who is God come to earth as a man to be our Lord and our Saviour.

Today, Michael Callaghan from St John’s, Egham will be continuing our series in Ephesians chapter 2.  It’s a description of how God has used his incomparably great power in us, moving us from death to life, from outside of his family to in it, from not having faith to having faith.  All of those are the gift of God.  He does all the work to save us through his power—we do nothing.  It’s a wonderful comfort to know God does it all.  If it were down to me, even in the smallest way, I’d only mess it up.  Wonderful it isn’t down to me—it’s all God’s word through the work of his Son.

Upcoming events:

30th October – SASRA prayer meeting – 6.30pm – Windsor Methodist Church

16th November – Monthly prayer meeting

2nd December – Windsor Fellowship Church Christmas Social

25th December – 10am – Short Christmas Day service at the Rector’s house

1st January – New Year’s Day ramble followed by tea & cakes

 

Regards,

Pete Matthew

Rector, Windsor Fellowship Church

Rector’s Weekly Email

Last Sunday we started our Autumn preaching series looking though Paul’s letter to the Ephesians.  I’ve been thinking this week about the amazing fact that we already have–past tense reality–every spiritual blessing in Christ.  Even though we (the Windsor Fellowship Church) are small and, in worldly terms, insignificant, we have everything already.  That gives me great confidence to keep going whatever health or circumstances I face.  Praise God for who he is and what he’s done for us in Christ.

This week we’re going to see, from the 2nd half of chapter 1, what these amazing truths about God cause Paul to pray for the Ephesian Christians.  The one key thing that Paul wants for them all is that they’ll know, understand, believe, the deep truths about God that he’s just told them in verses 3-14.  He doesn’t pray through a shopping list of needs and desires (although we should pray for those things too), he prays they will grow and mature in their knowledge and love of God.  And that’s what I’m praying for all of us too.

If you miss a week the sermon transcripts will be on the website and, from this week, a recording should be available too.

October events coming up:

Wednesday 19th –  Monthly Prayer Meeting 7.30 pm for 8:00 pm start, finishes at 9.15 pm. Meet at Beech House, Hermitage Lane, SL4 4AZ. It’s an opportunity for us to put into practice what Paul says in Ephesians 1:15-23!

Saturday 22ndMen’s breakfast – 8:15 — 9:30 am at the George Inn, Eton High Street.

Sunday 30thSASRA prayer meeting – 6:30 — 8 pm at Windsor Methodist Church on Alma Road.

Future events:

Friday 2nd December – Christmas Social
December 18th – 4pm – Christingle All Age Carol Service
December 18th – 7pm – Carols by (some) candlelight
December 25th – 10am – Christmas Day short service – 90 Frances Road (the rector’s house)
January 1st – 1pm-ish – New Year’s Day Ramble followed by cake and tea

Regards,

Pete Matthew
Rector

First weekly blog from our new rector

pete

Hi all

Thank you so much for all those who came to the Big Launch last Sunday and made us feel so welcome.  It was a wonderfully encouraging event. 

I felt it was important to remind all of us (me included) about the key reasons the Windsor Fellowship Church exists, which is why we looked at Romans 1:16-17.  The gospel, the good news about the Lord Jesus Christ, is at the centre of all we do and needs to always be the foundation of our church family.  This gospel message, that is the power of God for salvation for everyone who believes, is the only thing that will ultimately bring hope, life and joy to Windsor.  It’s also this message that will equip us, inspire us, and empower us, to live by faith.

Having gone right back to the foundational truth of the Christian faith last week, this week we’re going to start a new series looking at the Bible book of Ephesians.  This series will take us up to Christmas.  The passage this week is Ephesians 1:1-14.  In the original Greek verses 3-14 is one sentence in which Paul splurges out all the overwhelming benefits that are ours if we’re Christians.  If you have an opportunity please try and read the passage before Sunday.

My plan is to send out a weekly email which will have a quick recap of the previous Sunday, a heads up of what is happening that week and to share news and events.  We don’t want to overfill your inboxes so will try and limit circular emails like this to just the one a week.  The exception may come if there is something specific we want to let you know about.

Other upcoming events:

  • October 19th – monthly prayer meeting – 7.30 pm for 8:00 pm start, finishes at 9.15 pm. Beech House Hermitage Lane SL4 4AZ
  • October 22nd – men’s breakfast – 8:15 am to 9:30 am at the George Inn, Eton High Street.

And also advance notice for planned Christmas events:

  • Friday 2nd December – Christmas social
  • Sunday 18th December – All Age Christingle Service – 4pm
  • Sunday 18th December – Carol Service – 7pm

We’re very excited to be part of your family as we go forward together for the sake of God’s kingdom and wait to see what He will do next amongst us!

Regards,

Pete Matthew

Rector

The Big Launch

This Sunday is the beginning of a new chapter for the Windsor Fellowship as the Rev Peter Matthew is commissioned as our new Rector! We are very excited that Pete, Nicki and their six-year-old twins Henry and Helena have moved to Windsor and are already becoming part of the community.d0fc29d1-025b-4126-875e-234c4095ab36

Please join us along with the Archdeacon of Berkshire and other supporters at 4 pm on Sunday, 2 October at the Windsor Youth Centre (map) for a special service of celebration as we welcome the Matthew family followed by tea and cakes.

BBQ in 2 Weeks ☀ Plus a new series with Sam Allberry tomorrow!

ch_churchBBQ

We hope that you can join us on Saturday, 10 September at 4 pm for a BBQ at the home of Andy and Alicia Felce. Our new rector, Pete Matthew, his wife Nicki and their twin six-year-olds Henry and Helena will be our special guests. Anyone who would like to come along to meet them would be most welcome! Pete’s official start date is 1 October.

Where: North Royd, Crimp Hill, Englefield Green, TW20 0YB
When: 4 pm for tea and cakes, tennis, swimming and games (frisbee golf, anyone?)
5:30 pm Q&A session with Pete—a time to get to know the family
6:30 pm BBQ—please bring either a salad or a pudding to share

Don’t miss our new sermon series starting tomorrow with Sam Allberry: Found in Christ, Saved in Christ and Remaining in Christ. If you want to read the first passage in advance of the sermon, it is Galatians 3:26-4:7.

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Other dates for the diary:

Saturday, 17 September—Men’s Breakfast from 8:15 to 9:30 am at The George Inn, Eton High Street.

Saturday, 24 September—Ladies’ Breakfast with Fiona Perry, practice nurse and vicar’s wife. This will be a wonderful time of encouragement for all WF women. Please find details here.

Saturday, 24 September—Youth Reboot event in London. A time for 12-18 year olds to come and ask their big questions. More information here. We are organising transport to the event so let us know if you are signed up to come.

Saturday, 1 October—Spartan Run. Join a team of WF friends for this amazing event in Windsor Great Park! Please register here for the morning race and we will run as a team.

Sunday, 2 October—Commissioning Service for Pete Matthew at 4pm.

Don’t miss out on home groups starting in September

Many of us have been greatly blessed by the fellowship and encouragement of our home groups over the past year or so.  This small group setting is such a great place to get to know each other, to pray for each other, and to cheer, admonish and support one another.  All of our Windsor Fellowship home groups have been successful in creating this sort of dynamic—helping to strengthen our sense of community.

As we look forward to the arrival of our new minister in the autumn, we also look forward to forming new groups.  By mixing things up, we have a great opportunity to get to know others in the congregation and deepen friendships with a new circle of people. 

If you would like to be involved in this wonderful part of church life, please sign up below! The options available are:

  1. Women’s Weekly Home Group. 10am on Wednesdays
  2. Mixed Fortnightly Home Group. 7:30pm on Mondays 
  3. Mixed Fortnightly Home Group. 7:30pm on Wednesdays

Evening groups will be commencing the week of 12 September and the women’s morning group will start Wednesday 21st September. Please use email hello@windsorfellowship.com to tell us your preference by 5th September

Praying for George

Dear church family,

Those of you who were at church last Sunday will have heard the news that George Bosomworth, age 16, has been diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. George started chemotherapy on Thursday. The treatment is expected to last 4-6 months with the first two months being the most gruelling.

Please do pray for George and his parents, Kathryn and David, as they battle this cancer. It has been an emotionally draining past couple of weeks.  They are relieved to finally know why George hasn’t been well for several months, and they are thankful for the excellent care he has been receiving at the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford, but obviously it isn’t easy.

I’m sure George would appreciate notes of encouragement in the days and weeks ahead. The family’s address is: 32 Illingworth, St Leonard’s Hill, Windsor, SL4 4UP.

On behalf of the Bosomworths,

Janice Hopkins

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Dates for the diary:

Saturday, 10 September—BBQ and Meet the New Rector. Everyone is welcome to come along and meet Pete, Nicki, Helena and Henry Matthew at the Felce’s home, North Royd, Crimp Hill, Englefield Green, TW20 0YB. We will begin at 4 pm with tea, cakes and games followed by a Q&A with the Matthews and a BBQ supper. Bring along either a salad or a pudding to share. Please come!

Saturday, 24 September—Ladies’ Breakfast with Fiona Perry, practice nurse and vicar’s wife. This will be a wonderful time of encouragement for all WF women. Details to follow.

Saturday, 24 September—Youth Reboot event in London. A time for 12-18 year olds to come and ask their big questions. More information here. We are organising transport to the event so let us know if you are signed up to come. 

Saturday, 1 October—Spartan Run. Join a team of WF friends for this amazing event in Windsor Great Park! Please register here for the morning race and we will run as a team. 

New Senior Minister for the Windsor Fellowship

We are very pleased to announce that we have found a minister! Pete Matthew will be joining us full time on 1st October as our Senior Minister.63704-1

For the last four years Pete has been the Associate Minister of St John’s, Woking, which is a medium sized evangelical parish church. Prior to that he was the Assistant Minister (curate) of Christ Church, Balham, a church plant that started in 2002. He trained at Oak Hill Theological College and was ordained deacon in Kenya and presbyter (priest) in Guildford.

Pete is married to Nicki and they have 6-year-old twins, Henry and Helena. Nicki was born in Fiji, but only lived there for 6 weeks and grew up mainly in Hampshire. Prior to having the twins, she was a primary school teacher. Pete claims to be Cornish, but was actually born in Hertfordshire. Prior to full time church work, he was involved in sales and sales training.

All of us on the pastoral search committee found the process to be quite daunting but we were encouraged throughout as the role (and our small church) generated so much interest. We have truly sensed God guiding us and felt the bond of peace through the process. The committee, with the assistance of Archdeacon Olivia Graham, unanimously recommended Pete forward to the trustees and Bishop Andrew Proud. We are pleased that the trustees agreed to appoint Pete and that the Bishop is enthusiastic in his support. We hope that you will be in prayer for the Matthews as they transition out of their ministry in Woking and prepare to join us.

Below is a greeting from the Matthews.

Let’s keep praying!

With best wishes,

Pastoral Search Committee (Jenny Perry, Andy Felce, William Moore, Curt Hopkins)

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Dear Windsor Fellowship,

We’re very excited to be coming to join your church family at the Windsor Fellowship. We think it’s great how you have come together to form this new church community for the sake of the people of Windsor. We’re looking forward to see what God will do next as we come to help grow and develop the work.

We met at a church plant in Wimbledon and most of our adult lives we’ve been involved in various church startups, so we understand the joys and the flexibility of being a new church whilst also being aware of the insecurity and tiredness that can come from having to set out ‘church’ each week and not having your own building!

We’re praying for all of you and would love it if you could be praying for us as we prepare to join you, find new schools and all that goes with moving.  We’re very much looking forward to meeting you all at the BBQ on the 10th September.

With very best wishes,

Pete, Nicki, Henry & Helena Matthew

What?

Some parts of the Bible are difficult for us to get our heads around. Last Sunday we had a look at Exodus 22, which has a whole list of “do nots.” Some of these commands make sense, but others may seem irrelevant. So, what did our preacher, Sam Allberry, have to say about this passage?

First, everything in life is about God’s grace. Although God’s rules might be hard for us to understand, we must trust that His rules are ultimately for our good because He loves us and He wants to bless us. 

Second, all of life is to be lived for God. The Bible is practical. Knowing God will change our daily behaviour. Every area of our lives should be done “Christian-ly.”

Lastly, the grace that saves us will change us. As members of God’s family, we will, over time, becme more like God. God’s warmth and welcome toward us will make us warm and welcoming. God’s compassion will cause us to be more compassionate. God’s generosity will flow through us to others.

What a privilege it is to be part of such a wonderful family, with God as our Father. Come along this afternoon to hear from Exodus 24-25. The sermon title is “How to be friends with God.”

Salvation response

We had a new preacher last Sunday. Jon Drake has joined the team at St Mary’s Maidenhead, and it was lovely for us to meet him.

We learned about Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, who was a pagan priest in Midian. Through Moses’ witness, Jethro gained an understanding of the true God and turned his heart to Him. Jon likened this event to having the local imam come to our service and deciding to follow Jesus! It was an extraordinary heart change.

Following his salvation, Jethro had some good advice for Moses. He was concerned that Moses would wear himself out, so he recommended that he build a team around him. Jethro was deeply aware that this team needed to be holy and obedient. Jon pointed out that this would have required thousands of officials! The people of Israel numbered over a million, and this scheme recommended “chiefs of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens.” One application for us here is that God-honouring churches need lots of godly people helping to build up the congregation.

Tomorrow we will continue our series looking at Exodus 19. We hope to see you there!

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