We are now in full swing with our activities all being back to normal. Our toddler group, Tots & Co, has made a flying start to 2020. Last week we had 67 children present and just today we had 73, plus their parents, grandparents and carers - swelled by the arrival of several "Little Fishes" from Elm Hall Drive. We really do need a third room open soon. We are well blessed with numbers.
The joy of welcoming new arrivals was lessened by the sad news of the passing last week of one of our helpers, Denise, a mainstay of our kitchen for many years.
5th January 2020
We are now starting to return to normal, one of our first occasions being the Open Doors Coffee Morning on Friday. We were pleased to welcome 15 regulars who shared each other's news of church, family and friends over a welcome cuppa which, on this occasion, was a "mugga" tea or coffee.
Work is progressing in three of our smaller halls. The roof in the Proven Hall is now repaired and the ceiling and decoration will be next. New storage cabinets have been installed in the Mount Pleasant Room to replace the ones broken up and discarded. And, finally, work is now completed in the construction of large, new storage cupboards in the Choir Room. All systems go!
24th December - Christmas Eve
Last Sunday, the young people and the teachers of Junior Worship took over the service for the story of the Nativity - the age-old tale of the infant Jesus, the star, the stable, the manger, the shepherds, the wise men and the angels, not forgetting the sheep. Many thanks to all who put on such a fine telling of the eternal story.
Then, this evening, we were joined by many friends of the church, old and new, from just 7 weeks old to take part in our annual Christingle service. As usual, we had to put out extra chairs. A joyous occasion for all and a fine final Allerton service to lead us to Christmas Day.
What a terrific week of activity at Allerton. Last Tuesday and Wednesday we held our Christmas parties for the Tots & Co toddler groups with over 100 children entertained. Santa, and his snowman helper, gave each child a gift and a booklet explaining the real Christmas story and Olaf the Bear told a story and led the singing. A huge thank you to all who helped provide and prepare food and gifts as well as set up and clear away afterwards. See our Photos page - here.
On Saturday afternoon a packed church witnessed the 22nd Allerton Beavers' nativity production complete with Mary arriving on a donkey. A huge cast of characters, all beautifully dressed in costumes, told the story and we all joined in the carol singing. Afterwards, there were donkey rides for the children and refreshments in the hall were followed by a grand raffle with many prizes, all in aid of Claire House children's hospice. See our Photos page - here.
And, on Saturday evening, we were entertained by our annual seasonal concert from the Bentley Operatic Society. A packed programme of solos, duets, trios and quartet singing was backed up by the whole ensemble in chorus. Offerings ranged from Broadway and West End musical numbers to Hollywood film favourites. After the interval, for seasonal refreshments, the programme switched to Christmas, with a mix of carols and traditional favourites, highlighted by the annual comic rendition of Cinderella before a close of Jingle Bells and - what else? - White Christmas.
What a busy weekend at Allerton! On Friday, our Open Doors coffee morning was a Christmas special with cakes, books, nearly-new clothing, jewellery and a raffle. A great success - thanks to all who supported us.
On Saturday we were represented at Churches Together in Mossley Hill's Christmas stall on Allerton Road - distributing knitted angels, "Hope" magazines, story booklets, Christmas cards & leaflets and entertaining appreciative shoppers by singing carols.
Then, on Sunday afternoon, we hosted our biennial Hanging of the Greens service. We put up our wreathes on the windows, sang lots of carols, heard many Christmas stories ancient and modern, and we were entertained by our young people, on film and in person. In glorious chaos, after The Twelve Days of Christmas (with actions) we all joined our youngsters in decorating our two mighty Christmas trees before the house lights went down and the tree lights were lit to rapturous applause. Refreshments afterwards were served amidst a buzz of happy conversation.
Last weekend was our annual Christmas Fayre, a very well attended and successful event for the whole community. There was a buzz about the whole event with all the stalls doing well with the refreshments / lunches coming close to selling out. We did run out of raffle tickets and Santa's fabulous and much-admired grotto had a queue of eager faces (some of them children's) for the whole time, thanks to the work of his helper Elf and a bugle-playing snowman with Akela on his back. Thanks to all who supported us and congratulations to the many winners in the grand prize draw. You can see some Photos here.
Our Remembrance Sunday parade service was very well attended, with many of our young people from Beavers, Rainbows, Cub Scouts and Brownie Guides taking an active part. One of the Hawkins (Wednesday) pack leaders, Lyn, was surprised by her Scout Association award for having completed 30 years of service to Scouting - Akela Kim making the presentation.
Last Friday was our Open Doors Coffee Morning at 10.30 am when we had to put out extra tables and chairs because of the number who came along for a chat and a drink with friends.
On Sunday morning, All Saints' Sunday, we were pleased to welcome four new members into our church fellowship - Chris, Pat, Mike and Tracey, who have been worshipping with us for quite some time now. They are pictured with Tim during the service.
On Monday evening, our After Eight Monday Club held their last meeting of the year before their Christmas meal. Local flower arranger, Carol Boston, presented a demonstration of Christmas flower arrangement ideas for the table or as home decoration, which were raffled off to members afterwards.
Our Open Doors Coffee Morning in aid of MacMillan Cancer Support last Friday, was a great success, with over 80 people here throughout the morning. The usual coffee, tea and cakes plus books, nearly new clothing and a raffle raised a marvellous total approaching £600 for the World's Biggest Coffee Morning. Many thanks to all who organised, helped and who came along and supported
And on Sunday morning we held our Harvest Celebration Communion when the congregation brought gifts of food for the local Food Bank as well as gifts of money for the Church's and Christian Aid's joint Commitment for Life appeal, to be given in support of aid work in Bangladesh.
Then, today we are delighted to announce the continuation of our Youth Group, a joint venture with Oakvale URC, which meets on alternating Sunday afternoons at 4.30 pm until 6.00 pm currently at Oakvale church, Edge Lane Drive L13 2AD. See our Youth Group page for our flyer with full details and dates. We welcome ages 11 - 15.
This is a copy of the leaflet we have been distributing around the neighbourhood to bring the good news of all we do at our church. If you are outside our area or have not had one delivered yet, you may read a large version by hovering the cursor above the 'n' in 'Allerton'. Click on the arrows symbol and it should pop out.