Bishop John has launched his 2017 Lent Appeal, calling on members of the diocesan family to demonstrate the generosity and compassion which Jesus asks of us.
Once again four charities will benefit from the appeal, which has raised around £100,000 for good causes since its launch.
This year’s charities are:
- RNLI (suggested by Canon Keith Evans)
- Faith in Families (committed to by the Bishop)
- The Little Princess Trust (suggested by Rev Ian Drew-Jones)
- Open Door UK (suggested by Rev Jeremy Bevan)
“Your support will show that our internal concerns and challenges don’t take priority over the Gospel imperative to be light and love for others,” Bishop John said.
RNLI – MUMBLES & HORTON LIFEBOAT
Lifeboat crews at Mumbles have been saving lives at sea for more than 180 years and have been presented with 33 awards for gallantry. The station has also witnessed tragedy with 18 lifeboat volunteers losing their lives while endeavouring to save others.
Adam Evans, son of Canon Keith and Mary, is one of the volunteers who knows, at first hand, just how demanding the task can be. In supporting this year’s Lent Appeal, we have a direct link with the work being done.
The frontline service of lifeboat crews, lifeguards and flood rescue teams remains at the heart of this well-known charity. However, it’s not widely understood that the RNLI receives no government funding. It cost around £460,000 a day in 2015 to run the RNLI, all of which was generously donated by the public. This might sound like a lot, but with an average of 22 people rescued by lifeboat crews every day it’s money well-spent.
The Mumbles Lifeboat Station, Pier Road, Mumbles, Swansea, SA3 4EN
- Visiting times: Station visiting times are normally 11am – 5pm
- Visiting is subject to volunteer availability so it’s worth calling the station to check it will be open when you plan to visit.
- Visitor contact: Brian Jeffery
Visitor contact phone number 01792 361268
Open Doors is an international ministry serving persecuted Christians and churches worldwide. They supply Bibles, leadership training, literacy programmes, livelihood support and advocacy services. It also seeks to mobilise the church in the UK and Ireland to serve fellow Christians living under religious persecution and to make them more aware of the dangers others face simply for being disciples of Jesus Christ.
Open Doors was founded in 1955 by Andrew van der Bijl, a Dutchman more widely known as Brother Andrew, when he decided to smuggle Bibles to Christians he felt were being discriminated against in the then-Communist Poland. He continued this work in smuggling Bibles to many of the Soviet-controlled countries and in 1957 was given a blue Volkswagen Beetle which he used to make deliveries within the Communist bloc. With this new car he was able to carry more literature. Thereafter, the work of Open Doors continued to expand as it extended its network throughout Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union.
Open Doors conducts the following work in many countries:
- Delivering Bibles and other Christian literature
- Providing pastoral and discipleship training
- Conducting seminars on Christian living, family life. “Standing Strong Through the Storm” is the seminar they use to teach churches on how to survive under persecution.
- Running Bible-based literacy courses
- Supplying equipment and vocational training to help widows, families of prisoners of conscience, the displaced, and the unemployed to earn a living
- Providing legal aid and spiritual and emotional comfort to prisoners and their families
- Financing and supplying equipment to pastors, churches, and Bible colleges
- Supplying printing presses, radios, cassette players, photocopiers, and A/V and transport equipment
- Sponsoring Bible colleges, reconciliation ministries and restoration centres for Christian refugees, widows and orphans.
In 2015, 82.2% of Open Doors expenditure was spent on directly supporting and raising awareness and prayer for the persecuted church. Only 0.7% was spent on governance.
Open Doors UK, PO Box 6, Witney, Oxon, OX29 6WG. 01993 460015
Faith in Families
Faith in Families, part of the Diocesan Board for Social Responsibility, needs no introduction. It is one of the most impressive ways in which the Diocese has developed its outreach into our most disadvantaged communities, making a real difference to people’s lives through its child and family support services, outreach services and, more recently at St John’s in Brecon, older people and health and wellbeing services.
Currently, because of a major shift in policy by the Welsh Government, the very existence of some of its work, as well as the livelihoods of staff members, are under real threat. Your support will be a real boost to the morale of staff and trustees who are fighting to preserve the wonderful community and family work which Faith in Families delivers to people within several disadvantaged communities and who are in both profoundly challenging circumstances and real need.
Currently, the £1m redevelopment of St Teilo’s, Church, Caereithin, into a real Community Church in the heart of Portmead is well underway and on schedule to be completed soon. St Teilo’s will provide a family centre, open to all ages, where a range of activities will take place including parent and toddler sessions, high scope play group, healthy family lunch, after school club, holiday play scheme, adult courses, breakfast club and sessions for young people over 10 years of age, to learn new skills and develop friendships while having a great time together. Also, a community cafe with free Wi-Fi and social enterprises will be developed for adults of the area, led by the community, for the community.
Please help to support the team, so that their work will not come to an end and be lost for the future.
You can find out more about Faith in Families’ work here.
The Little Princess Trust
The Little Princess Trust was launched in 2006 by the parents of Hannah Tarplee, along with help from friends and from Hannah’s school, Hereford Cathedral Junior School. It is a small and unusual trust which brings huge help and support to children who face not only illness, but a radical change in their personal appearance because of it. Such a change can leave a child feeling self-conscious, uncomfortable and even vulnerable to unkind remarks.
Hannah was the original Little Princess. Sadly, she was diagnosed with having a Wilms’ tumour and, after a brave battle, died in 2005. At that time, finding high-quality wigs for children was very difficult and, only after a long search, was a suitable company eventually found which made a wig for Hannah. She very much enjoyed wearing her wig, particularly on special occasions. After Hannah died, so many kind people offered help, financial and practical. Hannah’s parents, Wendy and Simon decided that the most fitting way to use this help was to launch a charity dedicated to providing specialist real hair children’s wigs. Like so many Little Princesses, Hannah loved her hair and losing it was very traumatic for her.
Since its inception, the charity has now helped thousands of boys and girls. The charity works with suppliers throughout the UK and Ireland, all of whom supply beautiful, real hair wigs, and it continues to look for new suppliers all the time.
The charity has recently extended its mission to include, when funds allow, the provision of financial assistance for research into the causes of childhood cancers and into minimising the effects of chemotherapy in children.
Celia Drew-Jones, wife of the Rev’d Ian, recently cut off (most of) her hair and donated it to the trust, hence the suggestion that we support the charity with this year’s appeal.
Wendy and Simon Tarplee are still very involved with the charity in conjunction with the other trustees. The trust employs one full-time and six part-time members of staff who operate the charity on a day-to-day basis. It is privileged to benefit from the efforts of many kind and generous, committed volunteers who help with many aspects of the trust.
The Little Princess Trust provides real hair wigs free of charge to boys and girls across the UK and Ireland that have sadly lost their own hair due to cancer treatment and other illnesses.
Little Princess Trust, Broadway House, 32-35 Broad Street, Hereford, HR4 9AR.
Tel: 01432 352359