|July 8th 2009|
News from Normandy
Our move from Dives-sur-Mer to Notre Dame du Rocher was completed in mid-April. We have swapped sea and sand for hills and fields! We are still working on how to arrange everything in all the rooms, and not all cardboard boxes are empty yet!
Our new address is:
Our new phone number is +33 (0) 2 33 38 01 98. Email addresses remain the same.
French People Carrier: The end of the road!
As expected, our ancient Fiat Ulysse people carrier failed its Contrôle Technique in April - that is the official check that a vehicle is safe for the road similar to the MOT in the UK.
As the cost of repairs would have been too expensive, given the age, mileage and general condition of the car, we have had to get rid of it. So far the consequences of being without it have not been too bad. We are close enough to Condé to be able to make two trips where necessary. If we are able to start holding services further afield (see below), being without a larger vehicle might become a bit of a problem for us again.
Summer Services at Houlgate
Our annual series of English-language summer services for holiday makers at Houlgate begins on Sunday, July 12th and continues up to August 30th.
The services start at 9.00am. We need to be there in plenty of time to get everything ready in the church, and as it takes over one hour to drive to Houlgate from our new home, we are going to have to be up very early on Sunday mornings throughout the summer!
Expo-Bible 2009 at Houlgate
We are again holding an exhibition in the church at Houlgate on the theme of the Bible. The exhibition - Expo-Bible - opens on Friday, July 31st and runs through to Tuesday, August 18th, taking in the busy French national holiday weekend of August 15th/16th. We will begin setting up the Expo on about Tuesday, July 28th and will begin the process of dismantling it on Wednesday, August 19th.
There are many things still left to organise: The advertising banner to hang up outside the church; Publicity; The supply of French-language Bibles and Christian Books to sell; The supply of French-language Tracts and Gospels to give away; and much more besides.
Several people, both locally to Houlgate and from further afield in the UK, have volunteered to come and help us “man” the Expo. This will also involve answering people's questions about what they have seen at the Expo and talking with them about the Bible, the Gospel and the Lord Jesus.
Developments at Condé-sur-Noireau
The group of people that meet regularly at Condé continues to grow, though at any given Sunday service only about 50% of those who are connected with this group are able to be there, whether because of illness, travel or other commitments. We typically have between 15 and 20 people coming along to our services.
Currently we hold two English-language services a month, on the first and third Sunday afternoons, with the service on the third Sunday including the Lord's Supper. The group comes from a very wide geographical area around Condé, getting on for at least a 25 mile radius circle.
We also regularly hold a bilingual service with the French congregation at the protestant church in Condé. These joint Sunday morning services have been taking place about once every two months on average, but from the autumn perhaps we will be able to hold them monthly. Relationships and co-operation with the French protestant church continues to grow, both at a corporate and at an individual level.
In June we were able to start a regularly Bible Study/House Group in our new home. The aim was to meet every week, but in July we will only be able to meet twice and in August there will be a complete break. We hope to be able to resume in September on a regular weekly basis. We had a "full house" for the first meetings. However subsequent meetings have not been so well attended due to ill health, holidays, family visits and other events that take place in the summer to which people had prior commitments.
We are currently waiting to see if we will get permission from the Church Council of the Eglise Réformée du Bocage (the French protestant church) at Condé-sur-Noireau to begin holding English-language and bilingual services in the protestant church in the nearby town of Vire. This is situated about 15 miles to the west of Condé-sur-Noireau and about 25 miles from where we live at Notre Dame du Rocher.
This will provide further opportunities for ministry and broaden the area in which we can reach out with the Gospel. It will also increase our work-load, and so we could do with suitably and - more importantly - spiritually gifted and qualified people coming along who are able to commit themselves to various aspects of involvement in all the various meetings.
Where can I get more information?
Other ways to get in touch with us can be found on our web site at www.normandyvision.org/contactus.asp
Normandy Vision UK Trust is a charity registered with the Charity Commission of England and Wales, number 1116858. Normandy Vision UK Trust can be contacted in the UK at: 13 Danbury Vale, Danbury, Essex CM3 4LA, United Kingdom, or in France at: La Coulombrie, 61100 Notre Dame du Rocher, France.