“Did I write that?”

“Did I write that?” I wondered as the choir sang.  “Wow! It’s better than I remembered. Unless they’ve added something …

July 14th, 2018 was a day to celebrate – doubly!

First: a concert production of Rock, a musical about Simon Peter, with the CMM choir at St John’s. “You could sense the Spirit’s power!” people told me, thus explaining that “added something”. It’s 10 years since Roger Jones and I wrote Rock but we’d hoped one day to have such an evening here, where you’ve so long supported me and Christian Music Ministries.

Second: the publication of ‘With all the Trimmings’, my new collection of poetry, exploring Christmas sacred and secular, serious or lighter.

We’re already using it, with an interview/testimony and poems recorded for broadcast in September on Heart and Soul on South Birmingham Radio (online 6-8pm Wednesdays, with catch-up podcasts).

A similar format was well-received at a residential week in Derbyshire, and may be used elsewhere, including –

Friday November 23, 7.30pm
A pre-Christmas CMM evening at St John’s

Save the dated and invite your friends!

Please pray for:

  • The Spirit to continue what was started, with Rock and similar concerts
  • The new book to bless individuals, groups, services or concerts, beyond expectations.
  • For wisdom planning November 23rd and inviting friends and neighbours to meet Jesus this Christmas.

Thank you especially to those who came to Rock, asked for updates, or even bought copies of ‘With all the Trimmings’. Writing can be lonely, and your words are a great encouragement to trust God and expect his “added something”.

Times of encouragement

Thank you, all of you who’ve long prayed for Christian Music Ministries and for my changing involvement, writing lyrics and sometimes poetry for others to use.  It’s such an encouragement, particularly when I’m alone with a keyboard, looking for the right word.

Encouragement has been to the fore. Recently, as I read the day’s Bible in One Year (Leonard’s recommendation) a text came from Roger and team touring Scotland, using the Barnabas musical, plus times of teaching and prophetic ministry. They saw signs of the Lord working powerfully, and lives affected. Now a choir trainer at Lossiemouth had emailed them. She was hugely moved by the Spirit’s presence, imagining Jesus standing before her, singing his love over her.  She is avid to learn more and see God’s work in and through her.

Her encouragement encouraged them, as their text encouraged me. I looked at the passage before me, Isaiah 51:16. “I have put my words in your mouth.” I passed it on, but was sure it was a perfectly-timed encouragement to me.

With no more musicals planned, my role with CMM was, I thought, ending. Perhaps I should confine myself to a poem or two? A collection for 2018? Instead it seems there’s a fresh call for songs for ministry and healing. Tentative lyrics are beginning to email back and forth, seeds sprouting…

Praise the Lord for all the above and pray for discernment so the words and music of Jesus’ love will be sung over many lives.

Alison is Libretto writer for Roger Jones Musicals.

www.cmm.org.uk

 

SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW

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Alison writes:
This is a time of old routines and new beginnings at CMM, causes for both praise and prayer.

The Old: the musical, Barnabas, telling the story of Barnabas and Saul in Cyprus was much performed in 2016 (including a very productive visit to Cyprus itself!). The New Year sees yet more concert productions, teaching weekends and opportunities to share the good news of Jesus, and like Barnabas himself, to encourage deeper faith and trust in the power and working of the Spirit. Praise the Lord for lives touched already, new commitments made, and pray for strength and real consciousness of God’s presence for all participating in future events.

The New: the last months have seen frantic effort to complete ‘Spirit Works’, ready for its publication and launch on Saturday 18th February at Holy Trinity, Lickey. This resource book from Roger Jones, Annie Routley and Helen Pollard is aimed at individuals, groups and congregations, to encourage knowledge of and openness to, yes, the Spirit’s works. Its predecessor, Worship Works, has already been widely used as the basis for teaching days, weekends etc.

Praise the Lord that the book was completed on time and pray for blessing as its resources are used. Also for Helen, looking forward to her baby’s birth, and the team adjusting to her absence.

On a personal note, praise the Lord for the encouragement of hearing how the words I have scribbled have been transformed by his power, and pray that I may know how I should go forward.”

‘Stories of lives definitely changed.’

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Alison Fuggle

A big thank you to all who have enquired about BarnabasThe Musical; the accompanying novel The Encourager and the work of Christian Music Ministries using them both.  Feedback so far has been encouraging, with stories of lives definitely changed. Praise God!

This year, travelling teams including soloists and instrumentalists have led events using Barnabas in Barnt Green, Brixham, Ward End, Hemel Hempstead, Marston Green, Westward Ho! Barrow-in-Furness, Macclesfield, and Kidderminster.

There has been a Music Week at Grange-over-Sands, with three more in August and September at Lee Abbey, Willersley Castle and Sidmouth.

Other planned events include, among others, Haydock, Welshpool, Macclesfield, Beverley, Hull – and a small team travels to Cyprus, home of Barnabas himself.

As you can see, many exhausting miles, weekends and evenings have been given up to bring both music and encouragement to local communities.

In every case, the aim is not just a pleasant hour or two of music, but worship, fellowship and teaching, for both the local participants and those friends and relations who come to listen.

Barnabas is a terrific opportunity to teach about how the Holy Spirit works, to encourage those present, and to let him do the same in their lives, fellowships, communities.

Praise the Lord for what he has already done and all he intends to do, and for encouragement given and received.

Pray for openness to see where and how to invite the Spirit in – and for his continued  working in lives afterwards.

Pray for health and safety for all participating.

Alison Fuggle is a libretto writer for Roger Jones Musicals with Christian Music Ministries

 

 

 

 

Both musical and novel were very well received…

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Alison Fuggle

In September this year, after several years planning and writing, Barnabas the Musical had its premiere. There were two concert performances at Shirley Methodist Church, with the CMM choir, together with soloists and others from the studio recording.

As a bonus, a team of dancers interpreted some of the songs to great, and sometimes comic effect. The same event saw the launch of my first novel The Encourager, the (part fictionalised) story of Barnabas, before and after his travels with Paul.

Both musical and novel were very well received. There have been a couple of performances elsewhere this Autumn, with 20+ more planned for 2016 in various parts of the country; and possibly in Cyprus, the setting for the musical.

Each event is an opportunity for worship, teaching, ministry and, especially, encouraging both believers and those interested in knowing Jesus more.

I can still hardly believe we managed to get both musical and (particularly) the novel finished in time! Praise the Lord for supplying inspiration and stamina. A big thank you to everyone who showed interest and prayed over the last couple of years. Your encouragement is very precious as I am not involved in the travelling ministry of Christian Music Ministries these days.

Looking to the future, please pray:
That both musical and novel will give glory to the Lord:
That they will give encouragement, particularly to all those Barnabases who quietly and faithfully support all the higher-profile Pauls.
That the love of Jesus will flow out and spread from encouraged encouragers to the world round them.

Alison is the libretto writer for Roger Jones Musicals
www.cmm.org.uk

Lives blessed as people use their gifts to praise and worship the Lord

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Alison Fuggle

Barnabas, the Musical is written. We were able to have a try-out performance on April 18th with soloists and a small choral group.  Following that we made one or two improvements.

In May the studio recording takes place.  Prayer for stilling of nerves and for stamina for singers, instrumentalists, and all directing them would be much appreciated!

On June 20th a massed choir will record at Christ Church, Burney Lane, Ward End B8 2AS.  All are welcome.  Please come and add your praises to the CD.

If you can’t come, pray that Jesus will be praised through the music and words.

Full details from Christian Music Ministries cmm.org.uk 02527 576440.

Meanwhile, Barnabas, the novel is at the stage of editing and rewriting and more editing.  The hope is for it to be ready when the musical is launched in early autumn.

Your prayers for wisdom, good health and stamina are particularly requested for everyone involved in both these projects.

Already we can see lives being blessed as new people start using their gifts to praise and worship the Lord  – and we know this is just the beginning.

Alison Fuggle is a Libretto writer for Roger Jones musicals.
Christian Music Ministries www.cmm.org.uk

 

 

BARNABAS – A new musical and a new novel

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Alison Fuggle

Alison writes: “My work with Roger Jones and Christian Music Ministries is picking up pace at the moment. The new musical BARNABAS is taking shape, with the songs well under way, and some even completed. Final decisions will only be able to be made once we have our team of soloists assembled. Auditions will be taking place soon. Meanwhile, BARNABAS, THE ENCOURAGER the novel is still being written, hopefully ready when the musical launches next year.

Points for prayer
“WRITING. For a clear sense of the Lord’s hand guiding the words and music we write now; and being able to trust that he will use them, possibly in ways we don’t expect.

“AUDITIONS. For discernment as to the people the Lord wants to use to perform and record the musical. Pray for the right decisions at auditions on 24th November. We need a team to share solos, instrumental parts and ministry, and above all to be open to the Spirit’s voice.

“PARTICIPATION. Pray whether you or someone you know could be part of this. There’s opportunity for choir members (no auditions) as well as soloists.
Email: office@cmm.org.uk or phone 01527 576440. Web: www.cmm.org.uk.

“Finally, I want to thank everyone who has shown interest and support in the past. Working mostly alone, I really appreciate it!”

Alison is Libretto writer for Roger Jones musicals and Christian Music Ministries

 

Writing a novel – a new departure for me

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Alison Fuggle

“Roger Jones and I are in the early stages of work on a new musical based on the story of Paul and Barnabas bringing the Gospel to Cyprus. Please pray for clear insights in what to include and how, following on from the recent reissue of “Apostle” (Paul’s conversion, now narrated by Barnabas).

“At the same time, I’ve been asked to work on the story of Barnabas, as an accompanying novel. This is a new departure so your prayers for its development are much appreciated.

“In particular could you pray that, in both projects, we will be very conscious of what the Lord wants to teach through the words and music we write, so that they can be used for his glory?”

Alison is the libretto writer for Roger Jones musicals with Christian Music Ministries www.cmm.org.uk