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Friday 16 March 2018

Called to be Courageous

Contemplative - Compassionate - Courageous
This last week we’ve been discovering what it means to be a compassionate church.

We learned that the derivation of the word means ‘to suffer with’ others – in other words to come alongside others in their suffering and enter into their worlds, just as Jesus entered into the lives of the bereaved, the sick and the dispossessed. With the grieving Mary and Martha, ‘Jesus wept’ (John 11:35).

This coming Sunday and Wednesday we are going to ask ourselves what it takes to be a courageous church. It is often pointed out that the most frequently repeated command from God in the Bible is ‘do not be afraid’ or conversely ‘be strong and very courageous’ (Joshua 1:7). So if our faith does not require courage, we must be doing something wrong!

Come and find out why this Sunday morning and Wednesday evening at St Matthew’s.

With love in Christ,

Easter Dates

Good Friday
10am      • Walk of Witness (meet at 10.15am, The Pavilion, leave at 10.30am)
11.30am • Good Friday Service - The Forbury
2.30pm   • Good Friday Meditation - St Matthew's

Easter Day

10am • All Age Family Service

Coming up at a cinema near you...

A number of interesting films are being released in the coming days. Always a good opportunity to watch with a friend and get conversations going!

Mary Magdalene 

opens this Friday 16th March

It stars Rooney Mara as Mary Magdalene, Joaquin Phoenix as Jesus, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Peter (star of Oscar-winning 12 Years a Slave); and is directed by Garth Davis (director of Lion).
See for a discussion guide.

God's not Dead: A Light in Darkness
opens on Good Friday
Third of the God's not Dead series.  Parts 1 and 2 showed in UK cinemas four and two years ago.

Paul, Apostle of the Christ
also opens on Good Friday
James Faulkner (Downton Abbey) plays Paul; 
Jim Caviezel plays Luke (Jesus in Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ).

Event Cinema:
Handel's Messiah
Wed. 28th March only at 6.30pm 
Semi-staged at Bristol Old Vic, it is directed by Tom Morris  (War Horse) and will be shown in many UK cinemas that do Event Cinema.
See for a discussion guide.

Trailers to the above can be found on by clicking the relevant opening dates.

Also showing this Sunday at The Grange URC

Sponsor the Vicar!

Reading Half-Marathon

Pads is running the half-marathon on Sunday March 18th, to raise money for the Duchess of Kent Hospice, next to Prospect Park. The hospice provides fantastic and crucial end-of-life care for people with terminal illnesses. Pads was particularly touched by the care they provided to the young mum of two little boys that we’ve come to know as they attend Holiday Club.

Will you support Pads in this effort?

Visit the following link: where you will also find some more information or sign up the Sponsor Form (in the Welcome area)

Thanks everyone!

Fobney Island - Family Day: Saturday 24 March

The Canal and River Trust invite all local residents to join them for a day of Wild Waterway Adventures along the Kennet and Avon Canal at Fobney Island and beside the towpath and lock.

There will be Pond Dipping, Wild Art, Pirate Quest, Wildlife Trail, Giant Fish Sculpture, Birdwatching and you can even borrow a bike for a towpath ride with Avanti Cycling!

Why not bring a picnic and make a day of it?

For more information click here:

Christian Flat Share

A couple of rooms are available for rent in a lovely house, not far from St Matthew’s, near the centre of Reading.

For more information please email:

Rota Reminder: MARCH

Click on the links below to have a pdf copy of the Monthly Rota
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