It’s the time of year when we celebrate Harvest Festivals in our churches, schools and around the community. Obviously we need to look at this with a difference and some creativity this year. I thought it worth letting you all know the plans that we have put into place which extends the article which was in October’s edition of Sunrise.
We have already enjoyed a good online service on Sunday 27th September put together by our Parish Eco Group. If you haven’t watched it then do please go to the Parish Youtube page and find it – thank you to all those who took part in such a wonderful service. There will be a Sunday service in each church dedicated to a harvest theme. These will be on Sunday 4th October in All Saints and on Sunday 11th October in all the other churches. Of course spaces are limited at the moment for our ‘in church buildings’ services. Therefore The Ministry Team thought it appropriate that we offered some other ways to celebrate.
On Sunday 11th October there will be special Teddies Video to watch. Details will be sent out. This is particularly for young children and their families.
For families particularly (but we wouldn’t stop anyone joining in) there will be the Big Harvest Scavenger Hunt on the afternoon of Sunday 11th October. Here is the Harvest Scavenger Hunt and further instructions. Why not take a lovely autumn Sunday afternoon walk/ ramble, don your walking shoes and go off and find the things on the list? You’ll need a phone or something to take some photos as well. There will be people outside St Lawrence Church and The Church of the Holy Rood from 2-4pm to greet you at the end of your walk so that you can show off your collection and for you to receive your reward!
We are also running a creation/harvest photo and artwork exhibition. Get your camera ready to take that awesome shot of something that shows something of God’s beautiful creation or maybe there is a piece of artwork you’d like to offer that does the same. These will be displayed in the window of the Resurrection Furniture shop so that many people in our community will see. We are looking for A5 or A4 contributions with your name and contact details on the back. These contributions should be delivered to St Lawrence Vicarage and placed in the special collection box in the passageway between the house and the garage. Do encourage others to go and look at the exhibition in the shop window.
Why don’t you put a Harvest Wreath or Decoration on your front door or front gate for others to see? Here is a sheet with some ideas of how you might put one of these together – thank you Philippa! Harvest wreaths and garlands to make Have a go at making one putting a Bible verse or line from a Harvest hymn in there as well. Be as creative as you like. What a wonderful witness these will be for our community. Why not also share a photo of yours to our Parish of the Resurrection Facebook and Twitter page.
Mill Cottage Farm in Holybourne have set up a themed trail for Harvest. Why don’t you go and explore along the farm path finding all the special things? Mill Cottage Farm is at the bottom of Upper Neatham Mill Lane – the farm path is on the left just as you come to the bottom of the hill. Walk along it until you come to Lower Neatham Mill Lane!
Alongside all this we are encouraging gifts for the Alton Foodbank – there are a number of collection points around town including in Resurrection Furniture.
For the past few years the Parish has been exceptionally generous in donating gifts over the Christmas period for the local Womens’ Refuge. Despite an extra strain on their resources at the present time they are not able to accept goods this year. However they would be most grateful for any monetary donations.
As we celebrate Harvest this year during October we encourage you to support the vital work of the Refuge. We have set up a Golden Giving fundraising page (as we have done for other things over the past few months) at: here or cheques can be made out to ‘The Parish of the Resurrection Alton’ and write ‘Womens Refuge’ on the back, and on the envelope before giving it to Tim Sturt – this can be via St Lawrence Vicarage.
Come, ye thankful people come! All good gifts around us are sent from heaven above! Then thank the Lord for all his love!