We Love Chudleigh is an annual event for young people who want to serve the
people of our town and show them unconditional love. This year was the seventh
We Love Chudleigh and took place over two days during the Easter holiday.
After lunch we began our outreach by offering to pay for people’s car parking
and handing out free chocolates in the High Street. People were very positive in
response, if a little surprised, but it was good to be able to talk to them
about what we were doing.They were impressed by our We love Chudleigh T-shirts.
On Thursday morning after breakfast we set off to the Church to prepare for the free coffee morning. People were appreciative of our baking and there was a good turnout. After tidying up and having lunch, we started to plan our service for Sunday evening. This was an opportunity to share with the congregation all that we had been doing, and to thank them for their support.
The Benefice Weekend at Sidholme Hotel, Sidmouth 6th to 8th March 2015
If you weren't at Sidholme over the weekend of March 6th-8th, you won’t know what you missed. If you were, you don't need to read any further because you will have experienced this marvellous spiritually uplifting time of fellowship with 56 others from Chudleigh, Chudleigh Knighton and Trusham Churches. Seven young people also enjoyed themselves under the guidance of Graham and Liz Allen. A bonus was the weather; Saturday was one of those near perfect days for this time of year. Since there were no programmed activities during the early afternoon many of us spent the time outdoors either on the coast or inland to recharge our batteries.
The success of the weekend was largely due to our speaker, David Rowe, Warden of the Lee Abbey Christian Community, who took as his theme 'Sacred Spaces'. I can see your eyes rolling at this. No, he was not talking about bricks and mortar but of our spiritual needs and behaviour as people of God.
We must have 'Private Space' to communicate with our Creator. We require 'Intimate Space' to journey with those in need or distress. 'Social Space' is vital especially in this electronic age, since body language is so important. This looked like the end of the message and it was only 6.00pm on Saturday! Mark you, it felt as though we had been going all weekend. David had given us so much spiritual food and it was time for another sumptuous hotel meal. But, by 8.00pm we were gathered into four groups: some with Sheila Fletcher to prepare a collage; a second option was to join Colin and Maryon Avery to experience and discuss music; others were with Fiona Wimsett to select books to take to a desert island while the fourth group considered prayer under the guidance of Paul Wimsett. In the context of the general theme, these activities were labelled 'Shared Space', thus emphasising the need to be free in sharing our interests and talents with others and indeed learning from them.
During all this time the seven young people were being entertained and challenged. One of their activities that intrigued us was their quest to photograph each of us: we could not guess why! All was revealed after Communion on Sunday, when each of us was presented with a card with our photo and an appropriate passage of Scripture. A lovely gesture and souvenir of the weekend.
Sunday morning came, and what else was there for David to say before we all shared in the family meal of Communion? It was, of course to remind us that the Church is in the world not just in a building or at Sidholme, but with people everywhere in 'Public Space'. As David put it, the Church is always called to be in two places "IN Christ and IN Colossae". The push of Pentecost must always be present. So we came to our joyful Communion service and the opportunity for the young people to show us what they had been up to and tell us how they too had been challenged.
Finally, to our roast beef and yorkshire pudding Sunday lunch before getting into our cars for the journey home; all the time reflecting on a wonderfully uplifting time. We went on our way with the words put in our minds by David Rowe 'You are my son/daughter whom I love, you bring me great joy'.
What an uplifting weekend, led by such a good speaker – but we should not forget that an event like this does not just happen by itself. All credit must go to Nicky Over and her team for achieving this success.
|The ‘ice-breaker’ activity on Friday evening – making costumes out of newspaper!||Starting the day with a good breakfast (photos by Nick Tuckett)|
Young People at Sidholme
|The young people report on their programme (photo by Nick Tuckett)|
As is mentioned in the separate article about the Benefice weekend away, we had seven young people with us in Sidmouth. These were some of the things that they said about the weekend:
Christina Dunn said: ‘I thoroughly enjoyed the Church weekend away. The young people’s sessions were very thought provoking and challenging whilst maintaining an essence of fun and enjoyment. The large hall and lounge worked well for the adults and young people.’
Tom Gale said that he ‘learned lots and likes the way they have their own special theme which is different every year (such as Spacebook)’.
Will Gale said that it ‘was great and he wished it was every year!’.
Ellen Jones said that she ‘enjoyed the activities and loved the human conveyor belt game! She also loved being able to explore the hotel.’
William Jones said that he ‘liked watching the human conveyor belt game and doing lots of drawing. He also liked playing football outside and going swimming.’
The Benefice Weekend was held at Sidholme Hotel on 6th – 8th March. The leader was David Rowe, the warden of Lee Abbey, and the theme of the weekend was ‘SACRED SPACES – Stillness with God in a busy world.’
David’s four talks are available below. They are;
(Please note that David changed the order from the published programme).
David’s notes on his talks are available as a printout or via e-mail from Nicky Over..
Nicky Over, 852668, email@example.com
We have a wonderful group of people who keep the Church beautifully decorated throughout the year.
We welcome both adults and the younger generation alike. So if your children enjoy being creative with flowers, this is a chance to let them use their imagination.
If you would like join us as a flower arranger, please contact one of our flower co-ordinators: