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Weekly update for MCC Brighton
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Greetings <<First Name>>, welcome to this week's newsletter!

This image is very much on my mind this week. Crisis, the homeless charity, released a statement expressing concern over the plans to open up the winter night shelters this year, in light of the currently rising levels of Covid19 infections.

Hats off to them, they have nailed it.

This winter, unlike any year before, those on our streets are faced with a difficult decision. Previously the decision was whether they wanted to be in a shelter with people they didn't know, with the risk of theft and on occasion violence, or face the freezing cold of a doorway/small tent.

Now the decision is whether they want to risk contracting a potentially fatal illness or prepare for the cold by gathering extra items to stave of the cold/wet. 

Can you imagine having to decide whether you should risk your life just to stay warm? 

Night shelters tend to be single rooms with a dormitory style lay out. Locally they have had between 15-20 people in a room, with limited facilities, after all it is just for the night, to stay warm. Perfect if you are looking to prevent cases like the young man who died in Madeira Drive a few years ago.

Now, what happens?

It is clear that those who have underlying health conditions, (particularly those with chest conditions), which i would say are the majority of people living rough, are at greater risk of dying from Covid19. If you throw into that mix the fact they would be in a room with people they don't usually spend time with, all of whom have moved around the city a great deal, with little access to protective equipment and hygiene facilities, and you have a much greater risk of infection. 

I hope I am wrong but my fear is that this year we will see more people killed by the shelters than by the cold. How did things go so wrong? When did we start making people risk their lives for a bed? Surely everyone deserves a safe place to sleep? No-one should have to gamble with their lives just to get a good nights kip.

I will be looking at providing those I meet and know with extra sleeping bags, blankets, emergency covers, to at least give them a more balanced choice between this particular Rock and Hard Place. Why not see what you can do this winter? There are groups out there trying to level the playing field, it is heart-breaking, uphill work, but vitally necessary, particularly now.

Have a truly blessed and safe week

Andrew
This year's AGM will be held on Saturday 24th of October, starting at 6pm,
online
here, and also at the Level, near to our usual worship space.

All are welcome to join us, but only members will have a vote.

There are 2 positions available,
one on the Board, which will last for 2 years, and one as Lay Delegate for 3 years.
For further information, please contact Andrew or Philip.

Nominations should be received by the 10th of October.
At the AGM, nominations will need to be supported by a second Church Member.

TUESDAYS, from 7pm-8.30pm
Our online discussion group,
Bible Cafe - Take away,
click bit.ly/MCCBOnlineBibleCafe
from 6.50pm onward
if you wish to take part.

THURSDAYS FORTNIGHTLY
Worship planning
at bit.ly/MCCBrightonPlanning,
from 2.30pm, all are welcome.
The next scheduled meetings are on the
15th and 29th of October.
Check our diary HERE to look further ahead.
NB- this Thursday's meeting starts at 3pm

SUNDAYS, from 5pm-6pm
Our friendly and welcoming worship service happens in the Level, between the play-area and the Level Cafe, every week. It will continue to be broadcast live at bit.ly/MCCBOnlineWorship
from 4.50pm. A recording of this service will then be posted on Youtube by Tuesday evening, watch out for the link on our Facebook page.

Pastoral care and Spiritual Counselling is still available. Please call, text or Whatsapp our Pastor Andrew Ramage on 07905 537618.

You can also email any prayer requests to prayers@mccbrighton.org.uk

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