30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW
Weekly Update #133 November 27th 2022 – Beginning of Advent
From the Minister Promises, Prophets, a Baptist and a Mother
The 27th of November is Advent Sunday this year, which means that Christmas cannot be far away. The increased number of Christmas movies and advertisements also give that game away. This year, in our Sunday morning worship at Saint Columba’s we’re invited to make the journey through Advent in terms of promises, prophets, a Baptist and a mother. Representatives from different parts of the life of the church will be lighting our Advent candles Sunday by Sunday. This Sunday we’ll concentrate on God’s promise to come to be with us. In succeeding Sundays we’ll focus upon the message of prophets about the Messiah, about John the Baptist preparing people for the arrival of Jesus, and about Mary, a mother giving birth to a saviour in most challenging circumstances. Do take part in the journey, and feel free to invite a friend to come along as well.
Gracious God, as the day of our redemption draws near, extend to us your loving mercy, that out lives may be filled with your grace and our worship may show forth your praise. Amen.
C. N. R. Wallwork
WORSHIP SERVICES THIS SUNDAY Sunday 27th November
10.30 a.m. ‘God’s Promise’ – a service for the first Sunday in Advent, led by the Revd Dr Trevor Jamison, on God’s promise to come to be with us (Advent candles lit by members of our Finance and Property Team this week)
To watch this service live, catch up with it later in the week, or view previous services, Click Here
Church Meeting will follow the morning service – see below for the link to papers for this meeting.
6.30 p.m. ‘Remembering those who have died in 2022’ – a communion service at church, led by the Revd Dr Trevor Jamison, remembering those associated with Saint Columba’s URC who have died during this year
Worship services next Sunday- December 4th
10.30 a.m. ‘God’s Prophets’ – a service for the second Sunday in Advent, led by the Revd Jack Macadam, on the message of God’s prophets concerning the Messiah
6.30 p.m. on December 4th – Zoom communion service, led by Trevor Jamison, on welcoming others because Christ has welcomed us (Romans 15:7)
Sunday 4th December
3.00 p.m. Messy Christmas Church Participative worship for all generations, both individuals and families, led by a team from Saint Columba’sBring a friend along!
Bible readings for this week
Isaiah 2:1-5 ‘In days to come’ and coming ‘to the Lord’s house.’
Psalm 122 I was glad when they said, ‘Let us go to the house of the LORD!’
Romans 13:11-14 ‘Salvation is nearer to us than when we became believers.’
Matthew 24:36-44 ‘The Son of man is coming at an unexpected hour.’You can read the Bible passages online at https://www.biblegateway.com/
Reflection on the Readings
This week’s readings remind us that Advent is not all about Christmas and celebrating the birth of Jesus at Bethlehem. It is also about our expectation that Christ will return at the end of time, whenever that will be. As Jesus puts it, ‘about that day and hour no one knows.’ (24:36) There is an expectation that when God draws all things together then peace and justice will be established throughout the earth. The prophet Isaiah pictures that as a time when all the nations will come together (2:2) to learn God’s ways (2:3) and turn from war to peace (2:4). No one knows when that time will come. Writing to the church in Rome, the Apostle Paul advises them to live honourable lives in the meantime (13:13), keeping in mind that the final day of salvation is closer then when they came to believe (13:11). Jesus describes this attitude as one of keeping awake (24:42) and making sure to be ready for the ‘unexpected hour’ (24:44) when he shall return.
A hymn that responds to the readings
Behold the mountain of the Lord in latter days shall rise – the congregation at Metropolitan Tabernacle, London, sing a well-known paraphrase of Isaiah 2:2-5
Papers are included in the email version of the Weekly Update.
Funeral Service for Marion Styles
Following the death of our fellow church member, Marion Styles, her funeral, conducted by Trevor Jamison will take place on Thursday 1st December, firstly at Tynemouth Crematorium at 12.45 p.m., then with a service of thanksgiving at Saint Columba’s at 1.15 p.m.
HANDS is organising a Christmas hamper of tinned and dried goods and toiletries for the People’s Kitchen again this year. A box will be in the church hall until Sunday 4th December, and all contributions will be gratefully appreciated.
Church Christmas Post Box Now Open for Business
The Church Christmas Post Box opens for business this Sunday. Post your cards to fellow church members and collect any that have been sent to you. The box closes and distribution takes place on Sunday 11th December.
Stewards Still Sought for Christmas Market Weekend – 10th/11th December
More volunteers are needed to take a turn at greeting visitors at the front doors and within the church on the Saturday and Sunday when the Christmas Market is operating in Northumberland Square. Please sign up on the list in the church hall or contact Norma.
Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Appeal– a thank you
Following our shoebox service on Sunday 20th November, many thanks for all the gift-filled shoeboxes and the generous donations towards the postage that were received. Sixty-six boxes are now on their way to Ukraine, Moldova and Romania giving joy, love, and happiness.
Advent 2022 Conversation Groups on “Sharing the Christmas Story”This Advent, join a conversation group on Sharing the Christmas Story.
These sixty- minute meetings include space for quiet, and an open conversation about the theme for the week – Promise, Light, Mystery, and Love. Two groups will be meeting each week:
Tuesdays 1.15 p.m. – 2.15 p.m. at the church
(November 29, and 6, 13, 20 December)
Thursdays 7.15 p.m. – 8.15 p.m. via Zoom, click here to join.
(November 24, 1, 8, 15 December)
(The content of the Tuesday and Thursday meetings will be identical.)
Next Update – Sunday 4th December
Trevor Jamison will edit the next Update. To get your information in both the online and printed editions, please have it with him by Tuesday 29th November.
Keeping in Touch
You can contact your Elder, the Minister, or Church Secretary.