Activities This Month

Lord’s Day 3rd 11am, Lord’s Supper as part of Morning Service
Monday 4th 7:30pm, 3, 2, 1 Course, Final Session @ AP (downstairs)
Thursday 7th 7:30pm, Members’ Meeting @ AP (downstairs, online available)
Saturday 9th  8:30am, Men’s Breakfast @ AP (downstairs)
Lord’s Day 10th 9:30am, Craft Club @ AP (downstairs)
Wednesday 13th 7:30pm, The Christian Institute speaking @ AP (upstairs)
Friday 15th 7pm, Youth Club @ AP (downstairs)
Thursday 21st 8pm, Women’s Evening @ The Manse
Friday 22nd 6pm, Bible Club @ The Manse
Lord’s Day 24th Ian preaching AM, Eric preaching PM
Friday 29th (Good Friday) 10:30am, Joint bilingual service with Eglwys Efengylaidd Aberystwyth (Derrick preaching, Rhodri leading)

12pm, Walk up Constitution Hill with Eglwys Efengylaidd Aberystwyth (info below)

Other Notes

  • The walk up Constitution Hill begins at the Bandstand at 12:30pm, we will have packed-lunch at the top, and then leave it open to you what you want to do after that (some carried on on the path last year, others came back down). Those who aren’t able to walk up the Hillman go on the Cliff-Railway which runs every 10-15 minutes. Adults pay £7 for a single ticket up the hill, or £8 to go up and back down.
  • The 3, 2, 1 Course is an interactive evangelism course for those interested in the Christian faith. 3 stands for the fact that God is Trinity. The 2 covers the fact that the world is shaped by two representatives, Adam and Christ. The 1 stands for our one-ness, highlighting the fact that by default, we’re one with Adam, but that through faith, we can be united with Christ. There are four sessions which will take place every other week, finishing in early March. All welcome. Feel free to come on your own, or to bring a non-Christian friend, no sign-up needed.
  • Whole-Church Prayer-Meetings: 12th & 26th | Small-Group Prayer-Meeting: 5th & 19th
    • Speak to Rhodri, Ian, or Eric if you are interested in joining one of the three small-groups.
  • The weekly Women’s Fellowship meets on Wednesday mornings, in AP basement at 10:30am (TBC in Sunday notices).
  • The monthly Bible-Reading-Groups’ are currently on Genesis 36-50. All church-members have been encouraged to read that section and consider Christ as you do. Those attending the groups (Women’s Evening / Men’s Breakfast / Bible Club), do keep a note of observations and questions to share with/ask your group. The next Bible-Book-section will be Romans 1-16.
  • When able to, those manning the Book-Table go out every Saturday (weather & personnel-permitting) 11am-12:30pm, members, speak to Eric if you are interested in joining the work.
  • Rhodri plans to be in Llanymddyfri on Saturday the 2nd of March for the Call to the Hills Conference, a day of meetings organised by Simon Bowkett of Grace Rural Wales Partnership. 
  • Pray for Rhodri as he speaks at Aberystwyth University Christian Union (CU) on a Q&A panel on Thursday the 14th.
  • Rhodri is at the Mid-Wales & Borders Fraternal on the morning of the 19th, it is held in the building of Newtown Evangelical Church.

Book News

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Book of the Month

LEARNING TO LAMENT: Our Heavenly Father’s Embrace When We Grieve – Paul Mallard (Union, 2023)

The wife of a Christian, who is a friend of ours on Facebook, died last month. As the death announcement was made on Facebook, it was interesting to read the different responses of Christians to this husband who had just lost his wife. On the one hand, there were some very helpful comments, telling this brother that they were grieving with him, and expressions of sadness and sympathy. However, there was another strain of comments which came from a very well-meaning and semi-biblical place, but they were comments that were short-sighted and did not give the whole picture of what the Bible teaches about how we should respond to death. The comments went along the lines of, “Your wife has died, but this is ultimately cause for rejoicing, because she is now in heaven and is no longer suffering and is with the Lord Jesus.” Now, all of those things are true. The sister who died was a Christian, and she is indeed no longer suffering and is with her Saviour. But the sense that I got with those more upbeat comments was that they had failed to see what Paul Mallard has seen and writes about in this very helpful little book, namely the need for lament and the fact that it is biblical and right to express sadness and to grieve, and even, in the right context, to wallow in that sadness for a time. Paul here is speaking from experience out of a life filled with suffering and bereavement. And yet, what he has learned is the need to ditch the mask that we tend to put on in our Christian circles, in favour of an acknowledgment that it is right for us, from time to time, to join in with the whole of creation, which is groaning as in the pains of childbirth. Honesty is what is needed, and grief, sorrow, regret, and disappointment have their place in the Christian life. This is something that the Lord Jesus was involved with, expressing sadness, crying out to God in pain, and acknowledging weakness. Paul shows us in this book that the Bible gives us language to use when we go through loss. He also shows us that we have someone who we can trust in the midst of grief. He uses the word “brokenness,” which has sometimes been used unhelpfully (if it is used as a substitute for sinful) but in the right context brokenness is the right word to use in reference to the fall. Best of all, Paul points us to the Lord Jesus who went through the darkest lament of all time and gives us reason to hope.

Bible-Reading Groups Commentary Tie-In

EXPOSITORY OUTLINES AND OBSERVATIONS ON ROMANS: Hints and Helps for Preachers and Teachers – Rob Ventura (Christian Focus, 2023)

I would not normally recommend a book aimed at preachers and teachers for our monthly commentary recommendation, however, this book has recently been released, we have it in the shop, and it is worth looking at, even if you have no intention of preaching or teaching from Paul’s letter to the Romans. What’s helpful about this book is that the author has gone through every verse of the letter and gives not only in-depth analysis of the language but also helpful application for what this should mean for us. The book is full of helpful observations and summaries of the different sections of the letter, and even though some may be put off by the footnotes and references to Greek-grammar, the book is actually quite simple in most of what it says. It is full of helpful comments; it quotes lots of other thinkers from the history of the church who have also read this letter of Paul to the Romans. So, if one of you does want to take a bit more of a deep dive into the book of Romans, this would be a good book to look at.