Weekly Update #202 – 12 May

St Columba’s United Reformed Church

30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW
Weekly Update #202 – 12th May 2024
7th Sunday of Easter, and Ascension Sunday
Hello again everyone, from John

herd of sheepWell, our visiting pigeon has not been seen again, to this date!
It flashed through the doors, hung around for a little while but, it appears, has now gone away. I wonder if the apostles had a similar experience at the Ascension of Christ. He came into their lives, spent time with them and now has gone, possibly never to be seen again.
Do you ever feel like that?
We went out into Northumberland recently and had a picnic overlooking some fields which held flocks of sheep.
The quietness was very noticeable! Many of the ewes and lambs were lain down, some were stood munching away at the lovely green grass, others were having a walk to another patch of grass. A few weeks ago, it would have been quite noisy as young lambs called to their mothers for reassurance that they were nearby, and the mother responded. But now, sometimes, a lamb would have a panic and start calling for its mother, and the call would be answered from close by or the other side of the field. It was interesting to watch a lamb running as fast as it could over to its mother; once I saw a lamb and its mother, with another lamb, run towards each other from opposite ends of the field! These sheep had no shepherd looking after them, they were considered safe in the fields, plenty of grass to eat and a nearby river to drink at. They looked at peace and content.
The Bible tells us we are His flock, it is good to know that when we call on Him, He will answer us.
But do we call on Him enough, are we too mature now to need His presence, his reassurance?


Image: Herd of sheep, by Ria from Pixabay.


Lord, we are easily led astray, we think we know it all, we don’t need help, but we do!
Remind us to keep in contact with you, stop us from wandering from you.
Lord, keep your people safe.

Worship       Sunday 12th May

10.30 a.m.     A service led by Trevor Jamison, which will include ordination and induction of Elders, with our monthly Communion.

6.00 p.m.     Christian Aid service at North Shields Methodist Church.

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.

Sunday 19th May

10.30 a.m.     A service led by Trevor Jamison.

Bible readings (from the Revised Common Lectionary)

Acts 1: 15-17, 21-26
Through prayer, the believers choose an apostle to replace Judas.
Psalm 1
Blessed are the righteous for the Lord watches over them but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.
1 John 5: 9-13
Whoever believes Jesus is God’s Son, believes God and has eternal life.
St John 17: 6-19
Jesus prays for his disciples that they may be kept safe in the world and be sanctified.  

You can read the Bible passages online at https://www.biblegateway.com/.

Reflection on the Readings

This is the seventh Sunday of the Easter period. That does not mean we stop thinking, remembering and celebrating this incredible time; to me it is the time when we consolidate our feelings and all we have learnt anew in 2024. Who can say that the Easter displays in church this year did not stop and make you think afresh. We know Trevor was really tested about Palm Sunday by the children, and their responses with questions to God have left a legacy of thought for us. In Acts the believers are moving on from the trauma caused by Judas. He was chosen by God to perform that task and he fulfilled the role perfectly, no matter what we may think of him in 2024. But it left a gap in the Apostles’ number which needed to be filled. It was a choice between two of the followers, which indicates that either of them could have fulfilled the role in the eyes of the believers, so they turned to God in prayer for His guidance and, on casting lots, Matthias was chosen. I don’t think he is mentioned again in our Bible, correct me if I am wrong!
In the URC we repeat this procedure when we call Elders to serve our churches. We look for those who may have been chosen by God to work for Him in our Churches and, after prayer and consideration we cast our votes to select the ones to serve in this church. It is a daunting task which is sometimes too much to ask of people, but we know that whatever we are asked to do for Him, Jesus has already prayed for us to be kept safe and be sanctified, as we are His disciples in 2024. If those chosen to serve the church, do so in the light of Psalm 1, then they have nothing to fear. After all, as children of God and as believers in Jesus as His son, what can defeat us? As John writes in his gospel passage above, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.”

A hymn that responds to the readings

Christ triumphant, ever reigning, Saviour, Master, King.
Lord of heaven, our lives sustaining, here us as we sing:
Chorus – Yours the glory and the crown, the high renown, the eternal name.
No 77 in Complete Mission Praise

News and Notices

Christian Aid Week – 12th-18th May 2024
Christian Aid logoEnvelopes will be available from the beginning of May, which can be given to family, friends and neighbours. They will also be in the Church Hall and in the Church Worship Area.

The Christian Aid Coffee Morning will take place at Christ Church on Saturday 11th May, 10.00 a.m. – 12.00 p.m.

The Churches Together Christian Aid service will be at North Shields Methodist Church, Sunday 12th May at 6.00 p.m.

You can find a leaflet about these events to share here.

Image: christianaid.org.uk

Ordination and Induction of Elders – 12th May
In Sunday’s service we have pleasure in ordaining Peter as an Elder of the URC and inducting both him and Norma into the Elders meeting at our church.

Funeral of Olive Malcolm – 15th May
A service of thanksgiving for her life will be held at Saint Columba’s at 10.45 a.m. on Wednesday 15th May, led by Trevor Jamison. This will be followed by a reception in the Lishman Hall.

Messy Church – 2nd June – appeal for materials
Messy Church will take place on Sunday 2nd June.
In an effort to reduce costs and be more ecologically minded please would you rummage through your cupboards for the following:

  • Old mugs (either plain coloured, flowery or with insect designs!)
  • Plain coloured paper cake cases.
  • Paper plates.
  • Plastic containers from fruit, veg etc

A box will be placed in the hall for any contributions.

Strawberry Fayre – 8th June
milk, strawberry and spoonThe next social event at St Columba’s will be the Strawberry Fayre on Saturday 8th June. We are looking for items for the tombola stall, preferably wrapped. If you have anything suitable for the stall, please see Evelyn.

Image by Margit Wallner from Pixabay.

Would you like to assist in the services?
For many years St Columba’s has benefitted from people from the congregation coming forward to read our Scripture passages and lead our Prayers of Intercession. In recent years we have lost some of those people so we are looking to encourage others to share in worship in these ways.
Are you interested in sharing in either way on a Sunday? If so, please see John Drew. If you already do this for us, please confirm your willingness to continue to John.

From the Eco-Team
Eco Tip – Cut your carbon in the garden centre.
Who does not like a trip to the Garden Centre, especially if it involves cake! Here are some reminders from A Rocha UK that will help you make better choices for the planet when you’re buying plants:

  • Use peat-free compost,
  • Read the label, was it grown in the British Isles or is it imported? Imported plants carry a greater risk of introducing pests and diseases.
  • What is the pot made of? Is it Plastic or something biodegradable?
  • How long will it last? Is it worth buying annuals or could you fill the garden with perennials which last longer?
  • Is it good for insects? Choose plants with simple flowers-ones without lots of petals. They are more likely to attract bees and butterflies.

.. and finally,

Next Update – Sunday 19th May

Trevor Jamison will edit the next Update. Please get your information to him by Tuesday 14th May.

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 © 2024 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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