THERE are signs of summer all around us.
Gardens are looking green and colourful, there is tennis and cricket in the sports news and our children are thinking about sports days and transition between years.
At St Francis Church here in Leigh Park, the start of summer is marked by our summer fair tomorrow, which is an important date in our calendar.
We like to think of the event in two ways.
One is that it is about fundraising to help the church provide the activities that we deliver across the estate.
These include Messy Mondays, schools projects, craft days, prayer spaces in schools and our Christmas events and nativity.
We also like the summer fair to be about ‘fun raising’.
This means that we think creatively and work imaginatively in putting on the event.
We want to offer something for everyone – young and old, families and those on their own, members of our church family as well as all those in our community who visit the fair.
This year we have the Hayling Island donkeys, we hope to have a Silver Band, and we have craft stalls and home-made produce.
There will be a barbecue, ice creams as well as delicious tea and cake.
There is a children’s corner with pocket-money games and fun galore.
Old favourites such as our raffle and tombola sit alongside games of chance like spin and win, and play your cards right.
All of these stalls not only seek to raise valuable funds for St Francis Church, but to offer something fun and entertaining to our visitors.
It starts at 11am, at our church on Riders Lane, and all are welcome.
That sense of welcome is all-important to us at St Francis.
We are here to serve our community and bring hope and joy to people.
The fair gives us a great opportunity to remind people who do not usually visit the church that we are here for them.
They will find a place of hope and joy.
The fun that we all have at the summer fair is a sign of the joy that we can feel in our hearts as a church together – for young and old, for regular visitor and first-timer alike.
n ST FRANCIS CHURCH, Riders Lane, Leigh Park.
To contact Rev Jonathan, call (023) 9247 5276 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alternatively, go to stfrancisleighpark.org.uk.