Two Copper Coins – Ness WfM Group Fundraises for WfM Projects

A few months ago, Cross Free Church WfM group, based in Ness on the Isle of Lewis established a small fundraising group called ‘Two Copper Coins’ which raises funds for the WfM Project in their local area through the sale of donated handmade crafts. We asked Joanne Murray, who helped to start this fundraising initiative, to tell us a little more about their group.

Tell us about Two Copper Coins!

As a fundraising initiative during the lockdown, we decided to attempt to sell items online, perhaps as a kind of ‘shop’. This proved rather challenging due to various tax regulations so we then had the idea of being more of a fundraising group that would hold various ‘pop-up events’ using online means to spread the word.

Where did the name of your fundraising group ‘Two Copper Coins’ come from?

After much consideration on what to name the venture, we decided that the attitude of the widow in Mark 12:41-44 was a good inspiration. Her simple offering of two copper coins was more heartfelt and meaningful than much larger sums of money that were contributed in the wrong attitude. The Lord looks at the heart and is pleased when we give for His glory. God has blessed us all with different talents and means and all of these can be used by the Lord. There is no contribution too small. The ladies of Two Copper Coins pray that the Lord will use their small contributions to bless the work of WfM around the world.

How do you sell items in your local community?

Our first event was an online Harris Tweed Craft Fair. One of our ladies, Edna Macleod, donated beautiful Harris Tweed items that she made herself, to raise money for the 20/21 WfM Project. Photos of items and details were shared on our Facebook and Instagram pages and we created a brochure to circulate around those who are not online. This event was aimed at locals with cash payment only and collection from our prepared collection box.

What are your ideas for the future?

It is our hope that our future events will accept online payment and we will offer the option of posting items. This will open the event to a much wider audience and hopefully generate even more funds for the WfM projects!

Some confirmed themes for future events are candle stalls, handmade gift stalls, handmade card event, bake sales, and jam and chutney sales. We have lots more ideas which we look forward to setting in motion, God willing. We hope you will follow us on social media, join us at a future event and most importantly support the work in your prayers.

Follow Two Copper Coins fundraising here.

WfM are deeply grateful the fundraising efforts of Cross Free Church WfM Group and all the other fundraising groups around the country. All funds raised go towards our annual project. This year, our project is entitled ‘Hope for the Hurting’ and we are raising money for Safe Families Scotland, Community House Damaris and Lakhnadon Christian Hospital in India. Read more here.

WfM ‘Salt & Light’ Online Conference on 18 September

There is so much going on around us. “Woke” culture. Cancel culture. Questions of gender and identity and sexual ethics. The society we live in is changing so fast and is becoming increasingly intolerant of Christianity.

It is harder than ever to be a Christian in today’s world, especially when that means standing out and holding to beliefs that seem so outdated or even offensive to some.  It is so often easier for us to keep quiet and simply blend in with the crowd.

But, as Christians, we are called to be the “salt and light of the earth”. We need to be awake, prepared and ready.  The world – including those we know and love, our families and neighbours – needs to see and hear about the great and eternal message of hope that is in us. But how can we share this message and how can we show it with kindness, gentleness and respect?

This year’s conference, on Saturday 18th September, will get to the very heart of what it means to be a faithful Christian in a hostile culture, exploring how we might shine brightly as God’s people in this fallen and ever-changing world. 

Ann Allen, our main speaker, will deliver two short addresses: the first, ‘Being Christian in a Hostile Culture’ will concentrate on a quick overview of present-day culture and applying the lessons of Ephesians 4 to suggest how we can thrive in a hostile climate. The second ‘Being Missional in a Hostile World’ will examine Luke 10: 38 – 11:4, exploring basic principles which help us in witnessing to and caring for others. 

We encourage women of all ages to tune in to this conference and pray that it will be stimulating, challenging and an encouragement to us all.

How do we watch the conference?

The conference will be broadcast live on Youtube. The livestream will begin at 10.30 with background music playing until the conference begins at 11.00. You can find the link and more details here.

Do we need to pay?

There is no cost to this year’s conference, which will be freely available to watch online. However, if you are able, we would be delighted if you could make a donation to support this year’s projects. 

Organise a Group Event

With some restrictions easing, it might be possible for church groups to meet up and watch the conference together.  If you’d like to advertise a group event, you can download a poster template here.

‘Embracing the World with the Touch of the Gospel’ Project Raises £32,103

The 2020/21 Project ‘Embracing the World with the Touch of the Gospel’ was launched in September 2020 when we were coming to terms with the fact that we were living in the midst of a global pandemic.  More than ever the world truly needed the touch of the Gospel and the organisations we had partnered with in this Project – Leprosy Mission, Scripture Union (Scotland) and the Moldova Support Group – were endeavouring to do just that despite all of them having been affected by the impact of Covid 19.  With many of the usual fundraising activities curtailed during this period other innovative ways were discovered to ensure that the fundraising continued such as online Zoom quizzes, the sale of face masks and an online auction to name but a few.

We are truly thankful to God that by the end of June 2021, when the Project was closed, the amazing total raised was £32, 103.  This truly did exceed the Committee’s expectations and we are thankful to God for the generosity of all those who contributed to help raise this magnificent sum. 

This amount will be distributed between the above-mentioned organisations and also help to replenish the almost depleted WfM Disaster and Relief Fund.

As many of you will know the 2021/22 Project was launched in May at our online Annual Meeting and more details about it can be found on the WfM website.  With each Project there is an opportunity to learn about how different organisations, whether overseas or at home, seek to share the good news of the Gospel and the love of the Lord Jesus Christ in practical ways.  It is our privilege to partner with these organisations and I would strongly encourage you to watch the videos that are part of the new Project Hope for the Hurting.  By doing so may you not only be encouraged to support them financially but to pray for them.

Janet Murchison

Chairperson

WfM Annual Meeting

Annual Meeting – Saturday 22 May at 2.00pm

Janet Murchson (Chairperson)

For the first time in the history of Women for Mission (WfM) the Annual Meeting will be held online rather than in the illustrious setting of Glasgow City Free Church. Last year it was not possible to hold the meeting due to the nationwide restrictions imposed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Having become so familiar over the past year with using technology for church meetings etc and with the uncertainty of when restrictions would be lifted to allow us to meet in person again, the WfM Committee made the decision that rather than cancelling for a second year the AM would go ‘virtual’.  A new experience for us all but one we hope many will share with us on Saturday, 22nd May at 2.00 pm.  

You can access Saturday’s meeting here, or go visit this page if you would like to read the welcome and reports.

Business at the meeting will include a financial report including the amount raised to date for the 2021 Project Embracing the World with a touch of the Gospel.  Videos from past and current recipients of Projects will be shared as well as a tribute to the late Elizabeth Graham who passed away earlier this year and who was a loyal supporter of WfM.  

Despite fundraising activities been brought to an abrupt halt in 2020, many WfM supporters were not deterred.  Online Zoom quizzes, interviews with WfM Committee members, Facebook craft sales and even an online silent auction were held to ensure that fundraising could continue.   If anyone still wishes to make a donation to the Project the closing date will be extended until 30 June 2021.  

Further details about how to make donations can be found here – womenformission.org/donate

In addition, we are excited to be launching the 2021/22 Project and we will be sharing videos from the recipients of this new Project.  We are grateful for the opportunity to partner alongside three organisations as they seek to share the love and compassion of Christ with those whose circumstances are often broken beyond what we can imagine. But these are real life situations, both at home and overseas, and with your prayerful and financial support we can be an encouragement to our fellow Christians to persevere in their work of compassion and healing.

One aspect of the Annual Meeting which will be missed is our not being able to sing together.   However, there will be two lovely items of recorded praise and anyone can join in with them from wherever they are!

Covid in India: A Message from Dr Anne Urquhart

Anne Urquhart from Dundee Free Church has asked to send around a message about our brothers and sisters in India in need of help.


From Anne:

Kachhwa Christian Hospital (where Dr Anne Urquhart worked 1976- 1984), near Varanasi in North India, has 10 Covid designated beds, but no reliable source of oxygen. Please PRAY for patients and staff, especially Shankar the Administrator, who is under extreme pressure. The hospital has decided to buy an oxygen-generating machine at the cost of £20,000.  If anyone is willing to help towards the cost of this life-saving machine you have few options how to do it:


1. Direct Bank Transfer

South Asian Concern in London
Bank details : Sort Code 40-52-40  
Account Number: 00099484

Can you please also email the charity designating the gift as “KCH Oxygen Appeal” to admin@southasianconcern.org to ensure the gift goes directly to this appeal.


2. Donate online – visit www.give.net/southasianconcern 

Can you make sure that you also send the email to admin@southasianconcern.org designating the gift to “KCH Oxygen Appeal” 


3. By cheque To South Asian Concern (KCH Oxygen Appeal)

7 Mulgrave Chambers
26 Mulgrave Road
Sutton, SM2 6LE 

Gift Aid declarations may also be made.

“He gives twice who gives quickly”

WfM Annual Meeting 2021 – Join Us Online!

Women for Mission’s 2021 Annual Meeting will take place online at 2.00pm on Saturday 22nd May.

Join us as we give thanks for the funds raised through our Annual Project Embracing the World with the Touch of the Gospel and as we launch a brand new project for 2021/22.

We also look forward to hearing some live updates from projects past and present, including an update from Operacion San Andres, which we supported as part of last year’s ‘Mobilising for Mission’ project.

Donate Online

If you would like to make a donation to the current project, which is raising funds for Scripture Union Scotland, the Purulia Leprosy Hospital in India, the church build in Nisporeni, Moldova and WfM’s Disaster and Relief fund, you can do so easily via the online donation form.

Every penny is greatly appreciated – particularly this year, when it has been so hard to fundraise in the usual ways.

Alternatively, you can send donations to Mairi Macdonald (Donations Secretary) by post or directly to our WfM account – all the information can be found here.

Thank you to all individuals and churches who have already donated and raised funds.

Keep an eye out for more details about the AGM (including how to watch it!) which will be available very soon.

Prayer Points for the 20/21 Project: Scripture Union

In Lockdown:

  • Some materials and SU Groups are still meeting virtually – but engagement is understandably low
  • Staff are able to devote time to creating wonderful resources to be used when lockdown ends, and some are still able to deliver virtual assemblies.

Out of Lockdown:

  • Each school is approaching SU Groups differently, but some are operating outside, some online and some as usual
  • We are especially thankful for teachers who give their time to lead SU Groups as external visitors are still limited in most schools
  • We are also thankful for pupil leaders who lead their own SU Groups – what inspirational young people they are.
  • Please pray for these young leaders and for others to be uncovered and trained to lead groups.
  • Please pray for the re-engagement of volunteers and a boom in SU Groups when schools start to open again.

Thinking of the wider ministry:

  • Residentials with SU Holidays and with schools are the life blood of our centres – we are praying that these may return during the summer – but give thanks for the wonderful opportunities of day camps and activity days.
  • We have been able to devote more time to discipleship. Please pray that the new resources, training and opportunities we are creating for older young people may help more of them to flourish in coming years.
  • Pray for the leadership team as they try to predict what is coming! It seems to be an impossible task from my seat, both when regarding ministry and finances, but with God’s wisdom we can be sure to sail with the wind behind us.

If you would like to find out more about the ways we hope to support SU Scotland, you can read more here or watch the video below.

Prayer Points for the 20/21 Project: Purulia Hospital

2020 was a very difficult year for Purulia Hospital. As well as having an acute staff shortage, their Superintendent Dr Ujjmal Hembron passed away from Covid. Two of their doctors have written brief updates and prayer points for us.

Dr Jalaz Rahmi has shared thanks and these prayer points:

We sincerely thank you for your prayers, as only prayer is sustaining us. It is very encouraging to know that you are remembering us at this time.  We are slowly and gradually recovering from last year’s events. The staff are giving their best at this time and we praise God for this. 

Please pray that we get more doctors and specialists as it is discouraging for patients if doctors are not available. 

Kindly remember Mr Abhijit from our pharmacy staff who was also diagnosed with Covid in December. He has recovered now and back home, but continues to be fatigued. Mr Abhijit plans to return to work later this month.

Also kindly pray for our security guard, Mr Swapan, who was diagnosed with gastric cancer last month. He is currently admitted at a tertiary center and is awaiting surgery and chemotherapy. 

Kindly continue to keep us in your prayers regarding these things. Thank you for all your initiatives. We will be praying for you all as well.

We also have an update and prayer points from Dr Sneha Hembron who is Dr Ujjmal Hembron’s daughter:

We have been able to get through the past 4 months because of the grace of God. Thank you for the prayers. My mother asked to convey her thanks and a request to continue to remember her in prayers for the future God has planned for her.

Prayer requests for patients and staff-

Many new patients, mostly those in their 20-30s find it difficult when they develop complications due to Leprosy. Men and women of this age group find it difficult also because they are the main economic support for their family. Please pray that God guides every individual involved in their health care.

Pray for the many people in the older age group, mostly widows or widowers who have had leprosy as they often experience neglect from their family even after they have been cured from the disease.

In Purulia, in the past 6 months many staff have been compelled take leave for their own physical health or because close family members have been admitted in hospital, for Covid and other ailments. Those who have recovered from Covid-19  experience physical fatigue and psychological stress even after returning to work. Please pray that each of them find their healing and strength in Christ and these trials draw them closer to God. The shortage of staff leads others to be over worked. Please pray that they also find their rest in God’s presence and find joy and strength in God.

Please pray for these patients: Pallab to develop a positive outlook and he can rise up from the stigma and the pain due to neuritis that make him feel downcast. His family is very supportive and worried. Prabin is weary of recurrent episodes of inflamed nodules and admissions, this time he will be in hospital for prolonged treatment. Please pray that his symptoms are controlled and he finds release from the pain and healing. Kolpura had small ulcers on the feet because of anesthesia of the feet and because of which she had dispute with her family. Please pray that she can find her way back home in society.

It’s a great blessing to have so many people praying for us. Thank you for the support.

In this video, Dr Ujjmal Hembron – who sadly passed away in October 2020 – told us about the Leprosy Mission Hospital in West Bengal, India.

Prayer Points for the 20/21 Projects: Moldova

Over the next few days we’ll publish prayer points for the organisations that make up our 20/21 Project Embracing the World with the Touch of the Gospel. Please use these in your own prayers, in WfM meetings and feel free to share them with your congregation.

First we’ll go to Moldova to the Moldova Support Group. Please pray for:

1. Unity in the church despite the virus’ best efforts to keep us apart. Pray for those who don’t have internet to connect that way.

2. Vision for the church ministries (God to expand the vision of the church). There is a zeal to see more people join God’s Kingdom. May they do so in a way that honours God.

3. The pastor and his family. Pastor Alex is taking on many extra responsibilities in attending to the needs of the church by visiting those who are unable to connect virtually. Food prices have increased and he is trying to co-ordinate food parcels as well as the other activities.

———–

If you would like to find out more about the church project we were hoping to support in Moldova, you can read more here or watch the video below.

Join SU Scotland in Day of Prayer

Women for Mission are supporting Scripture Union Scotland as part of this years’ project ‘Embracing the World with the Touch of the Gospel’, and we would strongly encourage you to pray for SU Scotland – and all the young people of this nation – in your prayer meetings this week and as part of the SU Day of Prayer on Thursday 21 January.

“2020 has been a year of limitations. We have been restricted in carrying out our normal SU ministry. We have mourned the loss of SU Groups; SU Holidays; some staff we are having to let go because there is just no work for them to do. We want to begin by coming honestly before God and acknowledging our sense of loss and grief. We want to allow the Bible to shape our prayers.”

– Scripture Union Scotland

Read more on the SU Scotland website.

You can download a helpful prayer guide here.