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The Uplands Group of Parishes consists of Guilsborough, Hollowell, Thornby, Cold Ashby, Ravensthorpe, Cottesbrooke, Creaton and Spratton

Message from Reverend Allison Twigg, Associate Priest, the Uplands Group of Churches

however much fun they may be, but the real message; Jesus being born into a dark world of uncertainty, a world that knew pain and loss. Jesus born as a human being to fully experience everything as we do so that He can truly walk with us in whatever darkness we face. But most of all Jesus coming to earth as the light of the world, to win a victory over the things that hold us hostage and to shine His light and dispel the darkness. In that Christmas message, I pray, we find hope and joy.

  The light is coming. Come the 21st December the days will start gettingand we will start to see the return of the sun. This Christmas and New Year I pray for the light of God to shine brightly in each of your lives.

Reverend Allison


And whether you look forward with excitement to Christmas or whether you are struggling to see the light in your darkness, the message of Christmas is very much for you this year. I don’t mean the sanitised, sentimental or commercial one we see in Christmas adverts, however much fun they may be, but the real message; Jesus being born into a dark world of uncertainty, a world that knew pain and loss. Jesus born as a human being to fully experience everything as we do so that He can truly walk with us in whatever darkness we face. But most of all Jesus coming to earth as the light of the world, to win a victory over the things that hold us hostage and to shine His light and dispel the darkness. In that Christmas message, I pray, we find hope and joy.

  The light is coming. Come the 21st December the days will start gettingand we will start to see the return of the sun. This Christmas and New Year I pray for the light of God to shine brightly in each of your lives.

Reverend Allison

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Church News

 As I write this letter it is the weekend that the clocks fall back for the winter and all of a sudden the world seems darker. We're waking up in the dark, we're getting on with daily activities and we're coming home in the dark.

  For many of us this is a minor inconvenience but it can bring joy in an excuse for cosy evenings in with open fires and steaming mugs of hot chocolate. For some the darkness is a real problem: Lack of sunlight can cause low mood and even, for some, serious depression.

  Yet we are on our way towards Christmas and that is bright and shiny; and a time of excitement and joy; a time of bright twinkly Christmas lights everywhere you look.some however it doesn't matter how many lights the neighbourhood is decorated with, it still remains a dark time. Perhaps it is for you.

  There are many reasons why you may be feeling the darkness of this time of year, maybe you are facing Christmas without someone you love because they have died or have gone away. Perhaps you or someone you love are facing Illness or a personal crisis.you are lonely or just worn out with life.

An Invitation - Blue Christmas

As we approach Christmas, the constant refrain on the radio and the television; in the shops and in our community is about the happiness of the season, about getting together with family and friends and of celebration.

Yet for some of us this doesn’t reflect our inner feelings. Christmas can be a challenging and sometimes even painful time. The reasons for this can be many and varied. It may, for example, be the first Christmas without a loved family member who has recently died or it maybe that Christmas is a complex negotiation of sharing your time and presence, as well as your presents, between different parts of your family. Increasingly there is a huge social pressure to produce a perfect family Christmas that can make us feel very alone in the midst of the celebrating and rejoicing.

It can help to make the space and time to acknowledge our feelings and our concerns; and to know that we are not alone in feeling this way. For this reason we have decided in the Uplands Benefice at St. Denys Ravensthorpe to offer a special service called “Blue Christmas” service on Thursday 19th December at 6.30 p.m.  We invite you to join us in sharing and hearing prayers, readings, and music that acknowledge that God’s presence is for all of us, including those who struggle and for those who mourn- and that Jesus comes to us to shine light into our darkness and to bring us hope and healing.

This is not a service to make you feel sad, but one where you can come, lay down your burdens and share in the peace of Christmas.

ST ETHELDREDA’S CHURCH/DAVENTRY FOOD BANK

We were pleased to send our gifts received at our Harvest Festival to the Food Bank.  Thank you to all who contributed. For some time we have had a permanent collection box in church for items to be donated all year round. In addition, SEATONS  have kindly agreed for us to have a collection basket in the shop too.

Suggested items include: long-life milk; tea, coffee; tinned fish, meat, vegetables;  pasta, rice, cereals, soups. Basic toiletries for children and adults. For people to receive free food they must first be referred from a front-line care organisation. All it takes is a sudden unexpected event – a bereavement, illness, redundancy – to throw someone into a crisis.  Daventry Food Bank started in 2010 and since then has helped thousands of families. We hope that with the extra collection point in the shop we will be able to increase our support. Please help if you can.


This year, Advent Sunday is 1st December, so the Travelling Crib sets will be blessed at one of our Uplands Services and start on their travels around the Parishes finishing again at our Crib Services at Guilsborough 23rd Dec and Spratton on Christmas Eve. If you wish to be part of this and have Mary & Joseph, then please contact Pauline Jacobs, 01604 743792 or Sarah Crick, 07972 477690 so they can organise the best route for each box set. Ten years ago we started with one box going around the Uplands, we now have 4 boxes plus 2 school sets.

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Local news from the Northamptonshire villages of Cold Ashby, Cottesbrooke, Creaton, Guilsborough, Hollowell & Teeton and Thornby.

Last updated Sunday, December 1, 2019

Copy deadline for next printed edition: Monday 6th January 2020

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