Caring and Sharing was the theme of a family celebration of harvest festival at St Columba’s Church on 30 September.
Rainbows, Brownies, Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Youth Club, Toddlers and Junior Church were all involved in all-age worship on the Sunday morning, as the colourful service began with a parade of flags and banners from the uniformed organisations.
Gifts of fresh produce and tinned food were brought forwards, to be shared between local homelessness charities Nite Bite and the People’s Kitchen. Offerings were also given for the United Reformed Church’s Commitment for Life campaign in aid of the Christian Aid partner the Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees and the World Development Movement.
Children and young people played a large part in the service. In a word search, they found the words have, starve, and share by rearranging the letters of harvest. Katie read the story of the sower, which is found in Matthew’s Gospel, chapter 13, which was accompanied by illustrations. Matthew sang a solo “Let us Share”. Another Mathew led prayers for the church and the world, and the young people performed a puppet show to a song about a rich man and a poor man, from Luke’s Gospel, chapter 16.
Our minister, Liz, asked us about our favourite food, and reminded us that by buying fairly traded goods, we could care and share with poor farmers. Shirley reminded us how lucky we were to have a wide choice of food in our country, but we could make a difference by helping those in poorer countries. We watched a short film about Christian charity Samaritan’s Purse’s Turn on the Tap project. Without clean water, crops cannot grow, and people become ill and can die. One in six people in the world lack access to clean water, and many must walk for miles every day even to carry home dirty water. Turn on the Tap was improving water quality in Africa with filters and latrines.
We sang a variety of modern songs and traditional hymns, on a harvest theme. Afterwards, we shared fellowship and coffee in the church hall.