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Views from the Vicarage - November 2018

Dear Friends,

Honey is far more likely to do you good than antibiotics if you have a cold and cough this autumn. That is the recent new guidance from the NHS. Research has found that honey significantly reduces the frequency and severity of coughs.

Yummy honey

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and Public Health England (PHE) are urging us to buy 'self-care products such as honey, herbal remedies and cough medicines instead of asking our doctors for antibiotics. Only if coughs get very bad and prolonged, or if you feel really unwell and breathless should you consider antibiotics.

Connecting churches and communities

Remembrance Sunday and Christmas are key seasons when churches can play a vital role in bringing communities together. Churches can be wet-weather venues for Remembrance services. Often we can provide refreshments, PA systems, singers and DBSchecked children's workers for Christmas events. And most significant of all, churches can help the whole community to focus on the hope that Jesus offers.

To support churches at Remembrance with 'something to give', HOPE has published a pocket-sized gift book called Silence, which churches can give away at Remembrance events. Author Catherine Butcher says, 'As a nation we stand in silence for two minutes to remember those who have given their lives for their country. Silence aims to help people take a step further: to reflect on themes of sacrifice, faith and love, and to consider Jesus' offer of hope for eternity.'

For Christmas, HOPE has published a 32-page magazine packed with features and a couple of competitions to give Christians a conversation-starter as they give the magazines away. This year Christmas HOPE features the Duchess of Cambridge with Prince Louis on the cover, plus Leeds Rhinos rugby league player Jamie Jones-Buchanan and Adun, one of the 12 teenagers who was trapped in a cave in Thailand recently. Inside the magazine Jamie and Adun both speak about the prayers they've prayed - and the cover feature with the royal mum and baby points to the prayers chosen for the royal wedding and christening.

50,000 copies of Christmas HOPE are to be distributed through The Entertainer toy shops this Christmas. The magazine features the nativity scene, which will be in each of The Entertainer toy stores this Christmas, and includes the nativity story for families to read together.

Copies of Christmas HOPE are available for churches to buy in bulk at lOp a copy to give away to homes near their church and to guests at Christmas events.

My Prayers and best wishes,

Fr. Philip Edge - Vicar