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News and views from St. Mary's Woodbridge
Issue 9 Summer 2009

Family matters

Is domestic life tough after a family break-up? Are weekends particularly difficult when it comes to entertaining the children as a lone parent? One option could be Family Matters, which seeks to support the family by providing a free drop-in every Saturday afternoon at Woodbridge Methodist Church Hall.

Families taking advantage of this facility can join in games and crafts, and enjoy light refreshments its a free alternative to more expensive activities and an opportunity for children to play while their parents relax and chat.

"The idea developed from learning about the national organisation Contact, which provides similar help to families," explained Anne Munday, who runs the facility. "I approached the Methodist Church and Churches Together in Woodbridge, who were very supportive of the idea."

To find out more or to volunteer to help on a Saturday afternoon, please contact Anne Munday (Tel: 460733)

Footnote: Woodbridge could soon have its own Childrens Centre in the old Currys shop at the end of the Thoroughfare. Part of a national scheme, it will also provide parents and young children with some much needed support. Watch this space.

Pastors make a difference

The Woodbridge Town Pastors have been out on the streets for nine weeks now. The town pastors and the prayer team are briefed each week by the police at the prayer base in the Methodist Church before taking to the streets. The prayer team co-ordinate radio contact from the base and pray into situations as the pastors engage with them. The scheme has evolved in two main areas: pastoral, whereby town pastors engage in valuable conversation with people of all ages (including waiting with vulnerable females as they find a way home) and assisting licensees; secondly, being a presence on the streets, whereby pastors pick up many bottles, assist the police and actively seek out areas where, in particular, young people may be drinking and therefore vulnerable. God has been so good, this is all about Him and its all for Him so praise God for all He has and is doing!

Julie Mansfield

Bringing churches together

Congratulations to Julie Mansfield, featured in the last issue of Outlook, who has been appointed as the new County Ecumenical Officer. Building on her experience with Churches Together in Woodbridge & Melton, Julie will be supporting all those who are working to bring closer co-operation among churches throughout the county. "The more I study the Gospel," she explained, "the more I seem to come back to Jesuss simple instruction to love God and love one another. Regardless of our differences, surely this is the one central undertaking which must hold us all together." Julie will start work in her new post the only salaried position in Churches Together in Suffolk at the beginning of September. Married with three children, Julie is also a director of Ipswich & Suffolk Credit Union, a trustee and secretary of Woodbridge Town Pastors and a faith representative on the Suffolk Coastal District Council Local Strategic Partnership.