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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

25 February 2009: Simon Mason of the Petersfield Christian Fellowship

Being United

The Bible calls for Christians to have a spirit of unity as we follow Jesus. In Petersfield we have eleven churches that work together, making up the organisation Petersfield Area Churches Together (PACT). The eleven churches are All Saints, Steep; the Methodist Church; Petersfield Evangelical Church; Petersfield Christian Fellowship; St Laurence Roman Catholic Church; St Mary’s, Buriton; St Mary Magdalene, Sheet; St Peter’s; the Salvation Army; the Society of Friends and the United Reformed Church.

PACT has been in existence for over 40 years, and not only do leaders and congregations meet together, but support is given from within the churches to some excellent bodies like Home-start Butser and the King’s Arms youth club. There are also events like the annual Holiday Club, which has a huge list of helpers, and Messy Church, which brings families together once a month for a couple of hours of craft activities, singing, Bible stories, food and friendship. We want to see the Christian ethos being worked out in our community. Many of the things that we do are not about getting people into church or becoming Christian but to demonstrate in a real and practical way the belonging to family that we feel towards each other. It is usual to find that an event being held is being supported by most of the other congregations: the united church working and supporting each other.

These eleven churches together are the church in Petersfield. They display differing styles of worship but are able to encourage and support each other and to stand in and help when there is need to do so. Whatever is happening in the world, let’s be thankful that we are united, and let’s continue to share, to work together and to build on what we already have.

Simon Mason is a member of Petersfield Christian Fellowship, and lives with his wife and two small children in Petersfield. He teaches History at a local independent school.

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