Wim writes….

Just imagine if you had the whole world at your disposal, if you were able to choose where and how you were to have your first baby, what kind of place would you choose? A first-rate hospital? Comfortable and warm surroundings? The Christian faith believes in God, who could have chosen anywhere, chose the humblest place on earth. From the moment of His birth, Jesus identified with poverty and pain. Christmas is one of those festivals that can answer the questions of: Where is God? Who is God? Why am I here?

Throughout the December month St John’s will offer a range of different Christmas services such as Christingle, Nine Lessons and Carols, Crib Service (with live animals) and Christmas Celebration for people to enjoy and to discover more about Christianity.

Nevertheless, for many this season can also be rather stressful, and some may want to escape busy places and the hustle and bustle that seems to come along during this season. St John’s is open every day and anyone can visit the church during the week for a quiet space, to have some time for reflection or prayer.

We are also aware that for all the searching, it is rare to find a place and time to think and talk about the big questions of life, faith and God? That’s why St John’s Church will run an Alpha Course at the start of the New Year, offering anyone the opportunity to explore the Christian faith in an informal, friendly and open environment. A place where no one can force anyone to believe anything whilst giving an opportunity to freely discover for yourself. Alpha is run all around the globe, in cafés, churches, schools, universities, homes, prisons – you name it. This course invites people to explore the basics of Christianity irrespective of their faith or background. It is a series of interactive sessions typically run over 10 weeks, and will start here in Copthorne on the 10th January at 7.30 pm at the Parish Hub.

(If you want to sign up or find out more email:

alpha.copthorne@gmail.com).

Each session usually has three key elements: food, a talk or a film and a small group discussion. We start with some refreshments and something to eat because it’s a great way to get to know each other. The talks and the films are designed to engage and inspire conversations on big issues around faith. Usually around 20-30 minutes long. Probably the most important is the chance to share thoughts and ideas on the topic in an honest, friendly and open environment, and simply discuss it in a small group. There’s no obligation to say anything and there’s nothing you can’t say (seriously). So, during this season of Christmas and New Year you may have the opportunity to come to a meeting or a place that explores the deeper meaning of: Why you are here? Who God is? Or where God is now?

Have a blessed season, Wim