Happy New Year from all here at CMM. We hope you have all had a good Christmas, where you were refreshed and blessed anew by the amazing reality of God made Man. We thought a nice way to start the year on the blog would be to give you all an update on what we all got up to over the Christmas break.
The Jones Family spent much of their Christmas together, with chef Karl cooking Christmas lunch for 9 people here at Spadesbourne Road. This was, of course, after Roger had played for midnight service at Lickey and the traditional drive over to Christ Church, Burney Lane, to play for the morning service and pick up Pat and her profiteroles. Then on boxing day the family got together for their annual concert, including a violin duet from Beth and Emma, some 'Funky Carols' from Tim and a surprise item from Molly! After a New Years party with EBRG, Roger and Mary headed to Weston for a few days, and enjoyed some rest as well as walks on the beach with Poppy. Tim and Emma and the family also enjoyed some time with Emma's parents and family over the Christmas break - her father and EBRG Trustee Mike is still quite unwell with cancer, but responding better now to treatment. They did have a bit of a shock over the break though, as Michael was rushed in to hospital and diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Michael has coped well with this news, but do pray for him and the family as he learns how to manage his blood sugar levels.
Annie spent Christmas eve and night with the Sisters at the Community of St John the Divine in Alum Rock. It is a particularly special way for Annie to serve by playing keyboard for their worship, and to join them in the adoration of the Christ-Child. On Christmas day itself she cooked Christmas dinner for her good friend Svetlana, who hasn't had the easiest life, so it was great to support her in this way. After Christmas Annie went down to Dunster to spend time with her family, including her brother Ian and Kaye, as well as her dad and Gay. They really appreciated seeing her at this special time and played lots of games together.
Nicky had a lovely first Christmas as a grandma, and enjoyed spending as much time with little Josiah as possible! Part of the holiday for Nicky was spent helping her daughter and son-in-law (with Josiah) to move house, which was hectic and hard work. But after Christmas they were all able to settle down and enjoy time together. Another highlight for Nicky was the visit of a friend from Australia she hadn't seen for 18 years.
Helen had quite a quiet Christmas, spending quality time with James, who also celebrated his birthday over the break. On Christmas day itself Helen and James led worship at Saltley, and then had lunch with their good friend and CMM associate Amy. After lunch Amy went to her mum's and Helen and James travelled down to Thatcham to see James' brother and his family. They had a lovely couple of days there, and then drove back to Birmingham via James' dad in Oxfordshire. Once back home it was the turn of Helen's family to visit, and the evening of the 27th through to lunch on the 29th was spent with them - 14 people was quite a houseful on the 28th! The remaining days were a good rest, a nice party with friends for New Year, and then catching a cold right before heading back to the office.
We're all looking forward to a busy 2016, and excited about all that God is going to do among us and through us by his Spirit.