A church in the parish of Fleet is ‘cultivating community partnerships' by teaming up with a local pub on various community advent projects in a bid to ‘save the true meaning of Christmas’.
Revd Carol Dunk, associate minister at St Philip and St James’ church, and the team at The Heron on the Lake pub began their Christmas campaign with a winter wonderland fair that included Christmas-themed stalls and carol singing. The festive event was well received by visitors and customers alike, raising over £540 on the day, not including the carolling donations, which remain in sealed tins until ‘the big reveal’ at the end of the fundraising period later this week.
Carol commented: “I couldn’t resist the opportunity when the Heron called for help to ‘save the true meaning of Christmas’; the spiritual gauntlet was thrown down. I thought what an opportunity for building up God’s family here on Earth. And, being born within the 12 days of Christmas, I’m a proper ‘Christmas Carol’ as well as a priest!
The monies raised at the fair and through other carol singing events will go towards projects supported by the local branch of the ecumenical group Churches Together, which are: Fleet Angels, the Anna Chaplaincy, the Trussell Trust Foodbank and a Christmas Day dinner at the Harlington for around 40 lonely and isolated people in the Fleet and Church Crookham area.
The Heron is also collecting around 200 presents for local children who might otherwise not receive anything this Christmas. The pub’s manager, Dee McMullen, said: “We are so close to our target but not quite there! If you haven’t already collected a tag with a child's name and age on please come down! It is such a worthy cause.”
Carol added: “In these uncertain times, it’s wonderful to see the certainty of Christ’s love and generosity shown in our wider community. It’s also terrific to see different aspects of the local community working together for the common good.”
To recommend yourself or someone else for the Christmas dinner, please contact Wendy Makepeace-Browne asap on 01252 621657 or at email@example.com
For more information on Churches Together and their local projects, please contact Will Parker at firstname.lastname@example.org