Weekly Update #35: Sunday 15 November

St Columba’s United Reformed Church

30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW
Weekly Update #35: Sunday 15th November 2020

From the Minister              “…for those in peril on the sea”

“North Shields fishing boat sinks after collision with cargo ship” (BBC 09/12/2020) In this season of remembrance I’ve been reminded once again that North Shields is a fishing port, just next to the busy Port of Tyne. Fortunately, on this occasion, courtesy of the RNLI, the crew members were evacuated to safety before their ship (not the one in the illustration here) went down. Our local industry is a dangerous one – the Fishermen’s Mission tells us that fishermen are 115 times more likely to suffer a fatal accident than the rest of the UK workforce. All in all, a good reason to spare a thought and a prayer for those engaged in seafaring, and those who work to keep them safe:

“Eternal Father, strong to save, whose arm doth bind the restless wave … O hear us when we cry to thee for those in peril on the sea.” (William Whiting, 1825-1878)


Image: Pixabay



O God of the oceans of this world,
In Jesus, you called fishermen as followers,
And you calmed the restless waves.
Thank you for all the sea provides to us;
Thank you for those that work upon the seas;
Thank you for those who go to sea for the sake of those in danger;

A Song for Times of Pandemic

I Am Thine: a hymn text which was written in 1519 by Swiss Reformer Ulrich Zwingli while convalescing from the bubonic plague, having caught it ministering to others. With a new melody by Zac Hicks, it’s sung here by Leif Bondarenko.


Following the announcement of a lockdown for England from November 5th to December 2nd, we have closed the church building for worship and other activities.

To join this Sunday’s morning service, celebrating the work of the organisation, Compassion, online or by phone

When the time comes, click here.
Telephone: 0131 460 1196     Meeting ID: 869 4601 3963      Passcode: 840278

Hymns this Sunday: As We Are Gathered; When I Needed a Neighbour; All Over the World

To receive paper copies of orders of service please contact Trevor Jamison

Also, we will continue to worship online at 6.30 p.m. on the first Sunday of each month. All of these services include holy communion. The next evening service, on December 6th , will include remembering those associated with this congregation who have died during the previous year.

Other options for worshipping at home on Sunday

Online           URC audio service (https://devotions.urc.org.uk/ )                10.00 a.m.

Radio            Radio 4             Sunday Worship                                            8.10 a.m.

Television      BBC1               Songs of Praise                                              1.15 p.m.

DISCLAIMER: TV and Radio schedules can change, so check the timings are correct!

Bible readings for Sunday

From the Revised Common Lectionary
Zephaniah 1:7, 12-18                      A day of judgement even the rich can’t avoid

Psalm 90:1-8, (9-11), 12                 Human frailty, God’s anger and compassion

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11                  God intends to save us, not destroy us

Matthew 25:14-30                            A parable about resource use and reckoning

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

Songs that respond to the readings

“May the gracious care of the Lord be ours; may he always be our refuge and strength.” Listen to a song by Steve Warner, based on Psalm 90.

John Bell’s hymnTake this Moment, Sign, and Space concludes with, “Take my talents, take my skills, take what’s yet to be …”, a reference to the parable in Matthew 25:14-30.

Reflection on the Readings

None this week’s Bible readings make for entirely cheerful reading. Zephaniah’s vision of the ‘day of the Lord’ is frightening; Paul tells the Thessalonians that it will ‘come like a thief in the night; and the Lectionary compilers hint that we should omit verses from the psalm. In Jesus’s parable, the slothful servant gets sent to outer darkness, where some of us fear we will join him, given our less-then-perfect track record in life. Yes, we would be wise to pay attention, to be alert to the possibility of negative judgment. Yet a positive note also runs through the readings – in the psalm, the prospect of God’s favour; for Paul, ‘that we are children of light; in the parable, that most servants perform well. These readings may make us worry a little about the nature of God, but, as always, we read them from the perspective that God’s character is revealed in a self-offering of death and resurrection – and for our sake.

Christmas Orders for Traidcraft

Traidcraft Christmas catalogues have now arrived. Contact Peter Matthew who will send you a catalogue, place your orders, and arrange for delivery to you! Telephone 257 7498 or e-mail [email protected]

St Columba’s Coffee and Conversation returns –
Saturday at 10.00 a.m.

Meet friends for conversation and company

To join, click here when the time comes.
Telephone: 0131 460 1196     Meeting ID: 842 2468 9719      Passcode: 402449

Don’t forget, you’re allowed to invite friends along to take part in the conversation!

Peter Matthew will be hosting this week.

Don’t forget, you’re allowed to invite friends along to take part in the conversation!

Keeping in Touch – Your contact details

If your contact details (address, telephone or email) change please make sure to inform our Church Secretary Alison Drew.

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

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

Copyright © 2020 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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