Do read to the end, not all new notices are at the beginning! 😊
ST MARKS OFFICE The “church office” will not be staffed after 1pm on Christmas Eve until 9am on January 4. Out of Office messages will redirect urgent requests but if you can wait until after January 4 please do! Can I also take this opportunity to wish everyone a VERY happy Christmas and New Year – I’m really looking forward to being able to see you all in 2021. Sarah R
CHRISTMAS SERVICES AT ST MARKS Details of all the services over the Christmas period are on this page of our website – an extra email will be sent out early next week with all the Zoom codes for those who wish to attend. Sarah R
FESTIVAL OF READINGS AND CAROLS Although we cannot gather in the building for our usual Festival of Readings and Carols, we are excited to be able to offer a version of the service which you can watch at home! This virtual service will première at 4pm on Sunday 20 December, and will be available to view on demand via YouTube throughout the Christmas Season. As part of the service we are asking people to support the Homework Club, based at the Broomhall Centre, please use this link to donate and support the centre.
Follow this link to view the Service – https://youtu.be/oMva9fMKKHs Cate
CHRISTMAS EVE NATIVITY SERVICE We are delighted to be holding two outdoor services on the green this year. This is for pre-booked families only. We will be in contact soon with those who have booked a place. Hannah and Lynn
NIGHT SERVICE ON 27 DECEMBER ON ZOOM will be a ‘Lights in Darkness’ service. Christmas is not always a time of merriment and cheer, and many will feel dislocated from the tidings of comfort and joy. For many this season may bring pain, and conflict, feelings of loss and grief, isolation, uncertainty and anxiety. At this service, we will name the darkness in the world that surrounds us, and pray for the coming of Christ’s light. This liturgy journeys through the Christmas story as told in Luke and John, and includes the lighting of candles. Cate
ST MARK’S ADVENT RESOURCES FOR EVERYONE are still available online, lots to do and get involved in, please do take a look. If you haven’t yet seen the videos that are being released on the St Mark’s Advent calendar and would like to, please follow this link. (For safeguarding purposes this link is only available by registering with the office for the weekly email.) Hannah and the team
AN APPEAL FOR HELP Have you heard of the Upper Wincobank Non-denominational Chapel? Mary Anne Rawson (a notable anti-salvery campaigner) opened a School in the Chapel on Wincobank Hill in 1841 for the children of workers in the developing steel industry. She lived next door in the school teacher’s house. The building has now been vacated and the trustees are exploring its future use. There is a strong desire in the neighbourhood to see it repaired and used as a community hub and heritage centre. I am the Chair of the trustees. We need to raise £9,000 in order to secure further grants. I would also welcome some human support from St Marks. The Chapel was in a very poor condition when I first arrived. With support from English Heritage it was repaired and refurbished and reopened in 2005. St Marks supported us with a donation of £5k towards this work. The task now is to secure the future of the house for community use. Please support us again. Thank you. Inderjit Bhogal
Unfortunately, as a church, we are not in a position to support this project with a donation. If anyone is interested in helping Inderjit in any way please contact me. Sue
NEPALI HANDICRAFT SALE In previous year I have held a Nepali Handcraft Christmas gift stall after church during Advent. This year I have an attic full of woolly hats, scarves, mitts, yak wool blankets, pashminas and jewellery (mostly dangly earrings!) that I need to sell! Please email or me on firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like a virtual tour. I will deliver any purchases within the Sheffield area. All money goes to Phaseworldwide one of St. Mark’s chosen International charities. Dilys
FRIENDSHIP CLUB Issue 11, the Christmas number of “Let’s Connect”, the club newsletter, is NOW out. If you would like to receive a copy, please tell Sarah in the church office. Rosalind
BROOMHILL COMMUNITY LIBRARY NEWS We are delighted to have been chosen as one of the Co-op’s local causes in this round, which runs from now until 23rd October 2021. We shall be featured in Crookes, Broad Lane and Clarkson Street Co-op stores after Christmas (they’re too busy in the run up to Christmas to do this now). However, you can shop at any Co-op and contribute to our cause. You can also encourage your friends and relatives anywhere in the country to nominate BCL as their cause too, by going to our dedicated page. We are currently open for order and collect – and really looking forward to be allowed to offer browsing and computer use – we will do that as soon as we can, in line with government guidance. Kathy Harbord
The Reading Group has found Tom Wright’s book, God and the Pandemic¸ so interesting (even though only 76 pages) that we’ve decided to give it more time. So if you’d like to join us for 40 minutes at 7.30pm on 13, 20 and 27 January please let Sarah in the parish office know and then I’ll be in touch. John Schofield
CHRISTMAS STAMPS As in previous years I’m collecting your stamps for charity (this year the RNIB – Royal National Institute of Blind People). Please save them up at home and I will let you know when you can drop them off at church in the New Year. Thanks. Sarah R
POSADA/DIGITAL ADVENT This year our Posada has gone online with a digital advent calendar! There are 24 lovely videos made by people throughout our community. You can still view all the windows now. For Safeguarding reasons, the link for this will be available on the St Mark’s Friday email, or you can request the link from the office. Hannah
CLC BOOKSHOP GOOD/SAD NEWS The GOOD news is that CLC Bookshops Sheffield is open from 10am to 4pm, Monday to Saturday (yes, six days a week). If you prefer, you can order via 01142724663 or 03308181000 for delivery or collection. The website clcbookshops.com works for delivery too. The SAD news is that a very hard decision has had to be made. The bookshop will close permanently on Saturday, 16th January – and we know that this will come as a shock and blow to many of our valued customers.
LIGHTS OF HOPE We continue to invite you to pause with us every Thursday at 7pm and make space for hope by placing a light in your window. As you place your light, you may wish to say: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” (John 1.5 ESV) Cate.
SUPPORTING LOCAL FOODBANKS Usually at this time of year we would be collecting additional items for the foodbanks ready for Christmas. Foodbanks have experienced a huge increase in need as the Coronavirus crisis has continued. Please go to their websites and make a monetary donation or find out where you can drop off items they need most at this time. Thank you. Shan
TOP TIPS FOR MENTAL WELL BEING We all react differently to change in our lives and measures to limit the spread of Coronovirus have impacted on each of us in different ways. Send us your top tips for looking after your mental, physical or spiritual health and we will share them on the website over the next few weeks. Your coping strategy might be just what someone else needs to help them through a rough patch. Shan and Sarah R
PRIVATE PRAYER IN ST MARK’S We are pleased that individuals (& households) are still able to attend pre-booked quiet prayer in St Mark’s. Please contact the office to book but it is helpful if you suggest your availability. An email will be sent outlining the necessary precautions. (email@example.com). Sarah R
CHRISTIAN AID ADVENT CAROLS Sheffield Christian Aid usually organises a day of carolling in the city centre to raise money in December. This year they have been creative and moved this online! Follow the YouTube channel for a carol a day during December. Look out for some St Mark’s faces! They have a donations page.
CONTACT DETAILS FOR SARAH & STEPHEN COLVER As we leave St Mark’s we have so much to be grateful for, including such generous leaving gifts; but most of all we give thanks for you all, such a wonderful community of faith, hope, love and joy. We will miss you very much, but if you’d like to keep in touch please do. Sarah – 25 Oldridge Close, Holme Hall, Chesterfield, S40 4UF (email firstname.lastname@example.org); Stephen – Flat 6, 36 Millhouses Lane, Millhouses, Sheffield, S7 2HB (email email@example.com). Sarah
WE ARE PRAYING FOR YOU – Each week during morning and evening prayer, the clergy and pastoral care team pray for each one of you. If you have a specific prayer request for the pastoral care team or for intercessions at services, please let us know by e-mailing office@stmarkssheffield,co.uk or by contacting one of the clergy. Specific requests will remain on the intercessory prayer list for 4 weeks. If there is a need for the request to remain in the prayers for longer, please have a conversation with one of the clergy team. Thank you. Shan
ADVENT WINDOWS – Week 4 – the windows for the final week are around the city – but still worth a visit if you’re out and about. Visit between 5pm and 9pm to see them lit up. Locations are on our website or keep an eye out on our Facebook page for daily photos to enjoy. Jen Ryder
22) “The Wise Men followed the star which went ahead of them” Matthew 2:9. Camping Lane, Woodseats
23) “The star stopped over the place where the child was” Matthew 2:9. Linden Ave, Woodseats
24) “When they saw the star, they were overjoyed” Matthew 2:10. Marsh lane, Crosspool
25) “The wise men presented the baby Jesus with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh” Matthew 2:11. Marlborough Rd, Broomhill
26) “Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given” Isaiah 9:6. St Mark’s Church, (windows facing the green)
The windows will be lit up from 5pm – 9pm every evening.
For more precise locations see the interactive map.
For those who can’t get out to see the windows, here’s a selection from last week – aren’t they fantastic!