Weekly Update #64 – 20 June 2021

St Columba’s United Reformed Church

30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW

Weekly Update #64
20th June 2021

From the Minister                                       Keep Calm and Carry on Sailing
Christ sleeping in the StormI find this picture, Sleeping in the Storm, rather amusing. I know it portrays Jesus ‘in the sternasleep on the cushion’ (Mark 4:38), but to me it looks more like Jesus is slapping his forehead in frustration. Maybe the artist intended to portray that as well. After all, when their boat was caught in a storm, the disciples woke up Jesus, only for him to still the waves and then confront them with a question: ‘Have you still no faith?’ If you are as poor a sailor as I am that sounds a bit harsh. On the other hand, by now these disciples had been with Jesus for a while. They had heard his teaching. They had observed miraculous healings. What more did they need? Maybe they needed to ask themselves what the meaning was of the things they had seen, just as we have to ask what’s the meaning of the things we have heard about Jesus. ‘Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?’ (Mark 4:41)


Image: Christ Sleeping in the Storm by Elena Cherkasova, c. 2010, reproduced under CC licence 2.0


O God who gives structure to the universe,
When the storms of a changing climate are overwhelming the planet,
Protect and save me.
Jesus, who walked the land the stilled the sea,
When the storms of life threaten to overwhelm me,
Protect and save me.

10.30 a.m. Service at St Columba’s United Reformed Church

Led by the Reverend Trevor Jamison

See below for how to book your place


I sing the almighty power of God;

Eternal Father, strong to save.

Worship Services in the Building

You need to book your seat for a service in the building. To do so, please contact Alison Drew between 9.00 a.m. and 12.00 noon on the Friday immediately prior to that service.

We have one 30-minute service at 10.30 a.m. Physical distancing and wearing of face coverings are observed, but those from the same household should be able to sit together.

Seats will be filled from the front of the church to the back, and you must take the seat allocated to you by the stewards.

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      BBC                                     Songs of Praise                     1.15 p.m.

DISCLAIMER: tv and radio schedules can change, so check the timings are correct!

Bible readings for This Week

Job 38:1-11                          Who ‘shut in the sea with doors’?
Psalm 107:1-3, 23-32          ‘Some went down to the sea in ships …’
2 Corinthians 6:1-13            What Paul (and Timothy) endured for the sake of others
Mark 4:35-41                       Jesus, ‘do you not care that we are perishing?’

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

Reflection on the Readings        Commanding the Waves

La Tempête ApaiséeYou would hope that if you asked a civil question you would get a civil answer, but it doesn’t seem to work out that way with God. Job, who is blameless and upright (1:1), has nevertheless endured thirty-seven chapters worth of suffering and catastrophe in his life. Finally, Job has asked God, ‘Why?’ Instead of a straight answer to a straight question Job gets treated to three chapters of questions from God in return. Implicitly, God’s questions question our right to question God! As an individual human being how can I hope to fathom the meaning behind my life experiences when I play so small a role in God’s creation? It would help, though, to know that even if I cannot understand the One who has the power to control the seas (38:8, 11) this God is loving. If I met God on a human level, in a person who can command the waves, ‘Peace! Be Still!’ (4:39), that would be reassuring.

Image: Jesus Lulls the Storm – Jesus MAFA, reproduced under CC licence 3.0

A Song that Responds to the Readings 
Church Railings and Christian Aid Week – Some Thank Yous!

Thanks to those who have tidied up the area outside of the church buildings (you know who you are!) and are arranging for the railings to go back in place. We hope to have the damaged railings reinstated during July.

Also, thank you for the donations to Christian Aid; to those who put envelopes through doors and those who donated online. We have raised £477-00, an excellent result in current circumstances. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Church Meeting – 23 June 2021, 7.15 p.m.
Our next Church Meeting is due to take place on Wednesday 23rd June at  7.15 p.m.
More details are in the agenda and notes from a meeting about remembrance and celebration events. Minutes of the previous Church Meeting are available in the email version of the Weekly Update.
To Join the Church Meeting, click here.

Meeting ID: 819 8598 7273            Phone: 0131 460 1196

Bible Ecology Course
Offered by the North East Church Environment Group
How is Christianity responding to the challenge of the Climate Crisis?? Does the Bible help or hinder us when thinking about creation-care?

These are some of the questions addressed in The Bible and Ecology Course., taking place via Zoom, 7.30-9.00 p.m., on Thursdays 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29 July.

The course is free, and anyone can join, but places are limited. To book a place contact [email protected].

St Columba’s Coffee and Conversation
on Saturdays at 10.00 a.m.
Meet friends for conversation and company, online or by phone

To join the Zoom meeting, click here.

Meeting ID: 816 6992 3592        Passcode: 971804        Phone: 0131 460 1196

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 © 2021 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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