Our church plant has been going for less than a year and we have now experienced our first death. An elderly lady from Teversham, a real character, a real asset to our community, had been eagerly attending all our Sunday meetings and 'Classic Cafe' since she heard us carol-singing on the coldest night of 2007. From almost no Christian background at all. On Thursday she died suddenly. Her hunger for reading God's word and joining HCC for worship give us reason for hope, but we are still grieving. This Sunday, wonderful though it was, was clearly poorer without her.
Her family (not Christians, but clearly touched by how much she loved coming along to church) are eager for us to play a big part in her funeral - a great honour, and a great opportunity to serve. What a responsibility, though. Pray for us.
I see that Lou's new church in Brighton has also just gone through a similar loss. But what a hope we have!