Thank you for Norfolk Christian social action

SocialActionDignitaries4502013: A Thanksgiving Service for Christian Social Action organisations across Norfolk was held on October 4 with guest speaker Bishop Graham James describing them as the 'solid glue that keeps our community together.' Helen Baldry reports.

The service, at Norwich Central Baptist Church on Friday October 4, was arranged by Celebrate Norwich & Norfolk and Transforming Norwich, and celebrated the work of Christian organisations across Norfolk. The speaker at the service was the Rt Rev Graham James, Bishop of Norwich and the occasion marked the first outing of newly formed St Thomas Connect Choir.

The purpose of the event was to give thanks for the active Christian service in the county.
SocialActionChoir450Mark Fairweather-Tall, chair of Transforming Norwich said: “Again and again you see the commitment of the Christian community to provide social action to make a real difference to the society in which we live. The Christian community in Norfolk shows clearly that we don’t just talk about a God who loves us, we demonstrate it."

Bishop Graham spoke about the concept of ‘service’ in modern society and how people offering services – such as large corporations – usually retain power and authority and enjoy a buoyant economy.
Bishop Graham said: “To be a service isn’t enough. Humility is called for as well. Nobody notices humility – and nor should they. If nobody notices, we might just be doing the work of Jesus.”

SocialActionBishop450He remarked upon the range of traditions and denominations represented and said, "Christians are inventive and unsparing, not just in service and love but the solid glue that keeps our community together.”

Other invited guests were The Deputy Lord Lieutenant, Lady Evans-Lombe, Simon Wright MP, The Lord Mayor of Norwich, Keith Driver, The Leader of Norwich City Council, Brenda Arthur, The Chair of Norfolk County Council, Hilary Cox and The Chair of Broadland District Council, Stuart Dunn.

Many Christian organsations were present during the evening, some of which were founded in recent years. Those present included Torch Trust for the Blind, Christians Against Poverty, Prospects, ENYP, Compassion, Diocese of Norwich, Make Lunch, Besom, Community Action Norwich, Norwich Foodbank, Hebron Trust, House of Genesis, Matthew Project, Norfolk Recovery Partnership, YMCA Norfolk, Hope & Song to Freedom, Harleston Mothers’ SocialActionHeyborneDriver450Union Outreach and Celebrate Norwich & Norfolk.

John Betts, chairman of Celebrate Norfolk, praised the trustees, staff and volunteers of the organisations working in Norfolk to help those in need, and commented on the difference it makes in people’s lives. He said, “To have a ringside seat to some of it, I’m thankful to God.”

A short film showing some of the work undertaken by Christian groups in the area was screened - click on the box below to view the film.