Weekly Update #178 – 12 November

St Columba’s United Reformed Church

30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW
Weekly Update #178    12th November 2023
From the Minister                         Future Soldier?

Recently, one evening, I was travelling on the Metro to North Shields. Sitting opposite me were two teenage lads, out for the night. They were chatty, wanting to convince me that they were a pair of tough guys, up for anything, including a fight. The older one had left school. The younger one had been excluded from it, about which he seemed both sad and angry. He informed me that his plan was to join the British army – once he is old enough. If he succeeds in doing so he will be following in the footsteps of many youngsters from the North East. We bumped fists in respectful farewell as they exited the train at Whitley Bay, and I reflected that it is people such as these who fill many of the places in our armed forces. In this time of remembrance we talk a lot about people who have chosen to sacrifice their lives for the sake of others, and it’s important to mark that reality. At the same time, though, let’s remember those who have served because their choices were limited. Many have suffered and died in conflicts, at least in part because they are victims of the imperfect ways in which nations (including ours) organise their collective lives.

Trevor                                                                 Image: Royal British Legion

O God, bless our young people. May they never see the flames of war, or know the depths of cruelty to which human beings can sink. Grant that in their generation they may be faith soldiers and servants of Jesus Christ. Amen.From the Book of Common Order of the Church of Scotland , 1996. (altered)

Worship   Sunday 12th November – Remembrance

10.30 a.m.    A Communion Service on Remembrance Sunday, led by the Revd Dr Trevor Jamison

Livestreamed Worship from Saint Columba’s

To watch the morning service live, catch up with it later in the week, or view previous services, click here

Worship Next Week

Sunday 19th November

10.30 a.m. “Shoe Box Service” led by Mrs Shirley McKay and members of the congregation, focusing on the work of Compassion UK

To learn more about Compassion, Click Here

Bible readings for this week      

Isaiah 25:4-9       God intends to bring all of the peoples together in peace

Psalm 46              ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble’

1 Timothy 2:1-5   Pray for all leaders, that we may enjoy a ‘peaceable life’

Luke 1:68-79        Jesus, who ‘guides our feet into the ways of peace.’

Reflection on the Readings

‘I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings should be made for everyone.’ (1 Tim. 2:1) Paul’s advice to Timothy, leader in an early Christian congregation, is that they pray for everyone. This ‘everyone’ includes people in authority: ‘for kings and all who are in high positions, so that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life.’ (2:2) Most Christian congregations in this country today don’t usually have a problem with praying for those in authority because, unlike in Timothy’s time, we see the state as our friend, not a threat. Might that change as ‘organised religion’ becomes more marginalised in our society? If so, the call to pray for those in high positions will become more challenging. I wonder, if you were a Palestinian Christian living in Gaza today, how would you feel about praying for those in high positions so that you might lead a peaceable life?

Image by reenablack from Pixabay

A hymn that responds to the readings

‘We Pray for Peace’, a hymn by the URC minister, the late Alan Gaunt (1935-2023) (R&S 641), here sung in two contrasting styles

Style 1

Style 2

News and NoticesGranny’s Attic Sale – thank you!

A big “thank you” from the Social Events Team to all who helped out with the sale, which raised £600 for church funds.


Food Hamper donations for Bay Food Bank Welcomed

From 12th November there will be a food hamper box in the church hall for those who wish to make donations to the Bay Food Bank – tea, coffee and tinned goods are particularly welcome.


Monday November 13th – Carol Service Planning Meeting

On Monday 13th November we will have a meeting to plan for our Christmas Eve Carol Service, and for how we will publicise our Christmas services this year. This is an open meeting, so if you want to take part just come along to the church on the night. If you can’t be there but have thoughts or suggestions, please contact Trevor Jamison to let him know what they are.


Saturday 18th November – HANDS Christmas Coffee Morning

HANDS Christmas Coffee Morning takes place on Saturday 18th November, 10.00 am – 12 pm. Coffee/tea and mince pie /cheese scone £2.00. Tombola, Handicrafts, Cake Stall. Proceeds to Ukraine Appeal.

Forgiving and Forgetting: Advent meetings 2023

Starting November 27th, Trevor Jamison and Louise Sanders will be leading a four-session Advent course, “Forgiving and Forgetting”. Each week the session will be available in person on Monday afternoons at St Andrew’s URC, Monkseaton, and at Saint Columba’s on Thursday evenings. There will also be a session on Zoom on Monday evening. Participants are invited to take part in the meeting which best suits them. Further details will be available in next week’s Weekly Update.

Image: Kevin Mayhew Ltd.

Next Update – Sunday 19th  November

Trevor Jamison will edit the Update for 19th November.  To get your information in both the online and printed editions, please have it with him by Tuesday 14th November.

Keeping in Touch

You can contact your Elder, the Minister, or Church Secretary.

Minister: The Reverend Dr Trevor Jamison     Church Secretary: Alison Drew
minister.northshieldsurc@gmail.com               [email protected]
0191 290 1193         07896 899538                 0191 251 9774

Copyright © 2023 St Columba’s United Reformed Church, All rights reserved.

Registered Address:

St Columba’s United Reformed Church

30 Northumberland Square

North Shields, Tyne and Wear NE30 1PW

United Kingdom

St Columba’s United Reformed Church Charity is a registered charity in England & Wales, number 1164784.

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