Christmas church services in north east MiIton Keynes

Christmas is being celebrated in the Stantonbury Ecumenical Partnership with a whole host of services over the coming week or so. Here are some you will be most welcome to attend.

Bradwell Church

Sunday December 17.

4.00pm Family Carol Service (led by Rob Coles) ‘We’re going on a journey‘, Festive fun, and carols old and new.

6.00pm Traditional Carol Service (led by John Robertson). The Christmas story told in carols and readings.

Sunday December 24

4.00pm Family Crib Service (led by Paul Rushton). A short service for the young and young-at-heart. Take a break from the preparations and rush and focus on the real story.

11.30pm Midnight Communion (led by Rob Coles, presided by Steve Barnes).

Christmas Day

10am Holy Communion with Rod Ruston

Christ Church, Stantonbury

Sunday December 17

10.30am: Traditional carol service. Led by David Lewis:

As we celebrate the birth of Jesus in readings and songs.

Sunday December 24

10.30am Carols and Nativity around the tree.

11.30 pm Candlelit Communion

Christmas Day

10.30 am Family Service.

St Andrew’s, Great Linford

Sunday December 17

6pm Carol Service

Advent & Christmas Carols with Nine Lessons. The wonderful story of Christmas retold in song and readings

Sunday December 24

4pm Crib Service

A special service for young children, retelling the inspiring nativity story in songs and play in a way that young children, even little toddlers, are able to connect with.

11pm Midnight Communion Service. Come along to usher in Christmas – Joy to the world, the Lord is come!

Christmas Day

10am Family Communion for Christmas. All are welcome!

St James Church, New Bradwell

Sunday December 17

6pm Carol service

Sunday December 24

10am Methodist Communion Service

5pm Crib Service

11.30pm Midnight Communion

Christmas Day

10am Christmas Family Communion

Willen Church

Sunday December 17

5pm Carols by Candlelight with Quorum followed by mulled wine and mince pies in the Priory. It would be good if people

could bring contributions of mince pies and mulled wine for consumption after the service. All contributions should be left at the Priory before the service

Sunday December 24

9.30am Communion Service for last Sunday in Advent

3pm Lessons & Carols at Lovat Fields Retirement Village, Hawthorn Hall with Colin Taylor

3.30pm Christingle Service (especially suitable for children) with Paul Smith

11.30pm Midnight Communion Service with Paul Smith

How Fred and Fran turned tragedy into good with a Harley Davidson motorcycle

Most people when facing up to losing a murdered teenaged son would probably be filled with hatred for the attackers. But that was not the case for Fred and Fran Gill who forgave the three youths who were convicted of killing Robert who was 17 years old.

At Room’N’Ate’s latest meeting – a barbecue held at St James’ Church, New Bradwell, Fred and Fran, from Bedford, recalled how their adopted son was missing for a nearly a week before his body was found in the River Ouse in the town at Christmas 2007. On the night of the attack Robert had been to a nightclub and was drunk.

Both committed Christians – and bikers – Fred said the idea of customising a motorcycle in Robert’s memory came to him some time afterwards. A Harley Davidson Softail special was purchased and painstakingly decorated with artwork and relevant words.

The motorcycle is now taken to events far and wide to illustrate how it is possible to forgive in such difficult circumstances. It was on show at Room’N’Ate – Stantonbury Men’s Group.

One of the inscriptions reads: “Do not be afraid, for I will be with you, when you go through the waters I will be there”. This sentence from Isaiah 43 v 1 and 2 came to Fran when Robert was missing. Little did she realise the significance of it and its connection to where Robert would be found.

They discovered that this is the verse from the Bible that Christian, the pilgrim in John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress remembers. Robert was thrown into the river a short way from where Bunyan was baptised.

Fran said: “We knew we had to forgive and not allow ourselves to be overcome by hatred for his attackers. God gave us the strength to do that.”

And as a result of Robert’s murder Fran and Fred were instrumental in the setting up of Bedford Street Angels who are on call outside the town’s nightclubs to try to ensure that no other youngsters come to any harm after an evening out.