Tour of Christ Church
As you enter Christ Church you find a window showing Saint Matthew.
Picture St Matthew Window
He is pictured holding quill pen and paper. Matthew's Gospel is the first book in the New Testament. It tells the good news, or ‘Gospel', of Jesus. His birth, life's work, death and rising to new life changed the course of history. It can change us.
Matthew was one of Jesus' first followers or ‘disciples'. When Jesus met him he was a tax collector, which is why he is shown carrying a money-box.
‘As Jesus was walking along he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth. He said to him, “Follow me!”. Matthew got up and followed him' (St Matthew's Gospel, chapter 9 verse 9)
Tax collectors were not much loved by Jewish people in those days. They gathered money on behalf of the Roman occupying power. Strict Jews regarded them as tainted and impure. So they were shunned by respectable members of Jewish society.
In choosing Matthew to be one of his closest
companions, Jesus showed that there is a place for everyone
in God's Kingdom, not just respectable people!
World War One Street Shrine
As you move ahead, on the wall to the left,
you can see this unusual memorial.
The street shrine on the West Wall
It was put into the church in 1931 and carries
the names of 190 people from the parish who died on active service
during the Great War, 1914-1918.
Jill Waterson, of North Watford History
Group, wrote a short article about this shrine. To read it,
At the back of the church is the font, the place where people of all ages come to be 'baptised'.
Baptism literally means ‘washing'. In Jesus' day people marked many events in their lives with rituals involving washing.
Jesus' work involved telling people about God's Kingdom. He showed them new ways of relating to God and to each other. Before starting this work he was baptised by John the Baptist.
‘Just as he was coming up out of the water Jesus saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased”.' (St Mark, chapter 1 verses 10 and 11)
Jesus told his disciples to continue his work:
“Go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” (St Matthew, chapter 28 verse 19 on page 87)
Baptism marks a formal beginning to a Christian life. As followers of Jesus, baptised adults and older children try to live as Jesus did. They continue his work by telling others about him and the things he taught about the Kingdom of God .