Signed up Synods

Synods who signed up:

East Midlands SynodSouth Western SynodSouthern SynodEastern SynodWessex SynodNorthern SynodMersey SynodYorkshire SynodNational Synod of WalesWest Midlands Synod

Number of churches which signed up - 684 churches

as at 25 Jan 2011

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A Guide to using this site

A Guide to using this site

This guide is designed as a help to anyone wanting to find their way around this site.

Generally links which lead to another page or a document are in blue and underlined. Sometimes there will be no underlining such as in the Bible Year menu on the right of the page. This may display differently in other browsers and will work adequately in Internet Explorer and Safari, but the recommended browser is Firefox. You can get a copy free here The home page is laid out into several main areas, and the top and right hand side areas remain throughout the rest of the site except when you click a pdf document.

Below the top Vision4Life banner is the Main Menu. When you hover your mouse over these headings you can click to that main page heading. One some headings, a further drop down menu will appear and you can slide your mouse pointer down that list and click any sub heading. On some, such as the Bible year menu, a further set of headings will appear to the side which you can also click on.

On the right you will find another menu for this years materials. This will be added to as new materials appear so you can do a quick scan to see if there is anything new that you have not seen yet.

Below this there are two further boxes. The contents of these may vary from time to time but may contain such things as Recent News, coming events, information about Forums and signing up, and other special announcements.

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Seasons - Harvest and Remembrance

In preparation for the autumn, here are a number of resources for Harvest and Remembrance.

Harvest

Agape Meal prayer

This provides a prayer that invites God to our communal/celebratory meals. It was written for use at a TLS weekend away. Instead of taking communion together at the end of the weekend, we combined our final meal and act of worship together.

Download HarvestRememb-agape meal prayer.pdf

Fresh Prayerful Harvest

The aim of this piece is to restore integrity to prayer in the context of harvest thanksgiving and to save it from being either a guilt flavoured extension to Christian Aid week or a warm-up for One World week later in the Autumn.

Download HarvestRememb-fresh prayerful harvest.pdf

Green Pastures meditation

This provides a meditation that can be used by individuals or groups at any time

Download HarvestRememb-green pastures.pdf

Harvest Resources from the Arthur Rank Centre

The Arthur Rank Centre at Stoneleigh in Warwickshire supports Rural Mission. Here are some of their resources for Harvest that you might find useful. They can also be downloaded from http://www.arthurrankcentre.org.uk

Download HarvestRememb-harvest resources from ARC.pdf

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24-7 Praying for your community

AIM

Here are some ideas for those wanting to pray for their local community during the 24-7 prayer event.

 

INTRODUCTION

There are many different ways in which we can pray for our local community. Those suggested here are just a starting point. Please add to and alter them according to your situation.

 

STRUCTURE

  • Cut out some good and bad news stories about your area from the local newspaper
  • Write a list of the buildings around your church – or draw a diagram of your building and your neighbours –and put it on a large sheet of paper in the place where you’ll be praying
  • Visit the neighbours around your church, or the other people who use your building, and ask them for any prayer requests they may have
  • Ask if anyone in the congregation with local links in education, health, social services or other ways of helping people can suggest live issues your church could pray about
  • Invite those in your church to name one worry they have about their community and one hope they have for its future
  • Collect these on different coloured post-it notes and display them during your 24-7 prayer time so people can pray for these concerns
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24-7 Prayer - A short guide

AIM

To provide some suggestions for what to do if you want to take part in the 24-7 prayer event.

You can also download this page in pdf format
Download 24 7 prayer how to do it.pdf

 

INTRODUCTION

So you want to take part in 24-7 prayer but are wondering what to do. This short list of suggestions has been written to get you started. You don’t have to do it like these or to do all of these things but hopefully this list will help you to plan you participation in the 24-7 prayer event.

 

SOME SUGGESTIONS FOR 24-7 PRAYER

  • Talk to other people in your church and agree together which hour you will sign up for
  • Make sure you get the Elders, Minister and other key people on board
  • Get together a small group of other people who are keen on doing this
  • See if anyone already has any experience of 24-7 prayer to offer
  • Decide where you’re going to pray - in church (worship area, hall or small room), in someone’s home or another place
  • Make sure the space is warm and comfortable – with a variety of places to sit
  • Provide a simple focal point - a cross, a candle, an open Bible, a bowl of water and towel
  • Bring a CD and player with some gentle background music – instrumental works better than music with words
  • Reassure people they don’t have to fill every minute with spoken prayer – individual, silent prayer is powerful too
  • Provide some written prayers for people to pray individually or together – there are plenty on the website, or there’s a Vision4Life prayer in the booklet and reproduced below.
  • Help people to get through what may seem a long time by suggesting you all pray together at points during the hour – perhaps praying the Lord’s Prayer out loud together
  • Close the hour by inviting people into a circle, holding hands if it seems appropriate
  • Ask God together to bless the time you’ve shared and the prayers you’ve offered

Prayer

You may want to end you time together with the Vision4life prayer from the booklet.

A Vision4Life prayer

Life-giving God, creator of all,

you spoke the world into being

and saw that it was good.

Help us to see the world through your eyes –

messy yet full of potential,

incomplete yet perfect in parts.

When our view is distorted

may we refocus it through your lens of love.

Generous God,
give us vision for life.
Jesus Christ, saviour of all,

you live alongside us and show us

life in all its fullness.

Help us to look with you for hidden possibilities –

tiny mustard seeds of new growth,

grains of yeast that activate change.

As we identify signs of hope give us your energy

to keep searching for more.

Generous God,
give us vision for life.
God, the Holy Spirit, new life of all,

you blow away our excuses

and overcome our defensiveness.

Help us to keep in tune with your promptings –

glimpses of what could be,

hints of new outcomes we didn’t expect.

Generous God,
give us vision for life.

 

Feedback

We would love to hear of your experiences of being a part of Prayer Year and especially your 24-7 event, whether you are joining in for an hour or a day. Please send your feedback with stories and examples of what happened, how you did it and materials you used, along with perhaps comments from your 24-7 prayer journal. We would also like to receive photos and perhaps short 30 second videos of what happened. We hope to place some of these on the website as encouragement and support for other churches. Email admin@vision4life.org.uk

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24/7 Holy Week Prayer event

NEW! - Download pdf posters for use during 24-7 prayer event by clicking the images below

 

 

247 cross tree1

 

 

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Prayer Year Menu

The selections below will take you direct to the downloadable resources but it is recommended that you first visit the Prayer Year pages using the main menu above or by clicking the images to find summaries of each resource and links to additional items needed for some of the resources
 
Looking towards Advent
NEW Download Advent Candles.pdf
Prayer Stations - Gospel Beginnings
Prayer Stations - Gospel Beginnings set up
 
 
Prayer and the Bible
Jesus and the church at prayer study1
Praying with the bible
Bible storytelling
Lords prayer
Praying with psalms
Prayer Station including
Pieces for Life and Prayer Stations for Climate Change
Prayer station1
Patterns of Prayer including
Daily prayer and A simple pattern
Prayer Crafts
Prayercrafts 1
Prayer garden
Prayer Year and Art
Other Prayer Toolkit items
 
Prayer walk Growing with Jesus
Prayer walk - Love
Prayer walk - Stillness
Gateways into Prayer
Booklet of Every Day Prayers
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Patterns of Prayer

Daily Prayer

Helps us think about making use of a daily pattern of prayer. The accompanying document, "A Simple Pattern" provides an easily printed leaflet giving 2 leaflets per A4 sheet which can then be folded into 3, a useful bookmark size.

Download daily-prayer.pdf

Download a-simple-pattern.pdf

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Prayer

Welcome to the Prayer Year of Vision4Life, the second of three years that we hope will start to transform the United Reformed Church, and our partners, for mission. We began with the Bible Year, and hope you enjoyed making some discoveries to refresh how you see the Bible and your life together.

Advent Prayer Stations - Gospel Beginnings

These prayer stations have been produced by Dave Coaker, minister at Leyland and Penwortham, and provide a useful link between Prayer and Evangelism Years. There is a document for the text and another for setting up.

Download Prayer Stations Gospel beginnings.pdf

Download Prayer Stations Gospel beginnings - setup.pdf

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Contact Us

Contact us through the following emails

General enquiries can now be made through the Secretary for Mission Francis Brienen francis.brienen@urc.org.uk 

Technical enquiries relating to the website webcoordinator@urc.org.uk

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Great Escape

Great Escape

To explore our response to the theme of Climate Change by reflecting on the story of the Exodus

Download Great Escape pdf

Select from the menu on the right or view the Bible Year Menu Card

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Called to be peacemakers

Called to be peace makers

The call for Christians to be peacemakers is one that is emphasised by the United Reformed Church Peace Fellowship. In this material they invite us all to consider our calling as peacemakers from a biblical perspective and see how we might be more faithful to this aspect of our discipleship.

Download Peace starter pdf

Select from the menu on the right or view the Bible Year Menu Card

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4 Gospels

4 Gospels

In the New Testament we have four written down version of Jesus' life we call the Four Gospels. We usually identify these by the name of the writer to which they are attributed. Each gospel has its own character and content, and whilst there is obviously some overlap of the key aspects of the story like Jesus' death and resurrection, some parts of the story are specific to one gospel only. In this starter we get an opportunity to explore what we think about these similarities and differences.

Download the Gospels pdf

Select from the menu on the right or view the Bible Year Menu Card

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U turn for climate change

U turn for climate change

Climate change has become an important subject for all the world’s people. It is therefore particularly important that those of us who live in the substantially richer Western countries spend some time thinking about it and acting on what we discover. It is with this need in mind that this Bible study is offered here.


Download u-turn-for-climate-change

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Encounters in Mark

encounters in Mark's gospel a BRAND NEW resource by John Campbell

encounters in Mark's Gospel' brings you suggestions for a series of up to fifteen small-group conversations based on particular stories in Mark's Gospel. These conversations all share the same basic shape. They aim to help you, and everyone else in your group, to:

  • build up your confidence in actively exploring bits of the Bible
  • make connections between the biblical story and your own life story
  • find fresh vision for the business of being human today

all from watching and talking freely with each other about encounters between Jesus and those he meets - as we find them recorded in Mark's Gospel.

The first 13 studies and an introduction to the whole series are avalable below

Acknowledgements:

The core ideas of contextual Bible study as used in these materials come from Gerald West, notably in his book The Academy of the Poor, published by Sheffield Academic Press in 1999 and later republished by Cluster Press of Pietermaritzburg – see especially chapter 6.

A worked example of the contextual approach, using the story of the widow’s mite in Mark 12.40-45, can be found in a web article, ‘Structural Sin: a South African Perspective’ by Gerald West at:

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Making a Video Diary

One popular feature of reality TV is the video diary through which ordinary people are able to record their experiences and responses to being minor celebrities for a short time. In this activity we combine a number of things to record our ordinary experiences of Holy Week as Jesus disciples, our memories of then and our thoughts for now, using the medium of a video diary. This activity can be done by an individual or a group.

Create your own diary using video or other media to think through the events of Holy Week, Pentecost or any other time of the year

Download the video diary worksheet (pdf)
The sample video diary below is based on the cross - press the play button

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Extra Kennings

Here are some other Kenning contributions from churches who have sampled the Kennings and Cookies Dessert.


From Robert Weston at Park URC, Reading - a result from their lent study group

Feeding of the 5000:

crowd gatherer

Jesus follower

need spotter

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Bible Picnic

Bible Picnic

Would you like to explore the Bible outdoors for the end of the summer – or even the autumn. This could be anything from extreme Bible-ing, where you read the Bible in a range of highly inaccessible places (like extreme ironing but don’t take the clothes, the ironing board or the iron) or something as straightforward as a Bible picnic. After all, eating together outside often features in the Gospels, so why not try it your selves.

Download the pdf document bible-picnic

Download picnic-booklet-a5-low-res an example of a Picnic in the Park, organised by Waverley URC

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The Four Friends

This all age study explores the theme of friendship and inlcudes work-sheets for colouring in.

Download The Four Friends pdf

Select from the menu on the right or view the Bible Year Menu Card

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Getting Creative with Creation

Getting Creative with Creation

This all age session makes use of multi-sensory techniques to discover new things about creation and is an alternative way into the main course "In the Beginning".

Download the Getting Creative with Creation pdf

Select from the menu on the right or view the Bible Year Menu Card

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