30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW
Weekly Update #69 25th July 2021
Hello everyone, from John.
We have a spark of light for the future, will it die or become a flame of strong fire?
As I write this, we are probably coming to terms with what Her Majesty’s Government, which said it would be guided by data not dates, has told us how on 19th July restrictions would be relaxed, less commanding and more personal choice. Do we then have the choice of passing the virus on to others by not wearing a mask, or do I have the certainty of going on holiday abroad and not having to isolate when I return? Can I be assured that attending a family or church celebration won’t spread Covid 19?
“The greatest commandment is to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind, and second to this, is to love your neighbour as yourself.”
I hope that as we each have faced this week, we have managed to keep these words of Christ in our minds and will use them as a guide to how we behave in the coming weeks and months.
Image by Warren Wong Unsplash
Lord, again we are entering strange, uncertain times. Some of us will leap for joy at the freedom to sing your praises again, others will be very wary because they see us coming closer together as a fellowship in worship. Help us to remember that we are commanded to love our neighbour as ourselves, give them space if they need it, wear a face covering while we adjust to the new freedom. Mainly Lord, we pray that this will not go terribly wrong and we end up with more people suffering from this virus and even more people dying because the hospitals cannot cope. May we move forward with a new vision for the future, secure in You.
Father God, in whom we trust and believe, we give thanks that you are with us always, with your love, comfort, strength and power.
WORSHIP FOR SUNDAY 25TH JULY 10.30 a.m. Service at St Columba’s United Reformed Church
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.
If you book a seat and find you are not able to come, please ring Alison by 9.15 on Sunday so your seat can be offered to another person.
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.
On Sunday, August 1st we also worship online at 6.30 p.m. and that service will include Holy Communion. No booking is required!
Future Services and Plans for St Columbas
To read a Document prepared by Trevor and the Elders, Please Click Here
Other options for worshipping at home on Sunday
Radio 4 Sunday Worship, from the Keswick Convention 8.10 a.m. Radio Newcastle Sunday Worship for local radio 8.00 a.m. Television BBC 2 Songs of Praise Rev. K. Bottley at Boscobel House in Shropshire 1.15 p.m. On-lineURC audio service https://devotions.urc.org.uk/ 10.00 a.m. Yourchurch ‘Zoom’ service To Join Click Here 6.30 pm Password is YourChurch
DISCLAIMER: tv and radio schedules can change, so check the timings are correct!
Bible readings for This Week
Psalm 14 God looks down on a God-less people, only the poor hear God!
2 Samuel 11: 1-15 David seduces Bathsheba and then sends her husband into battle.
Ephesians 3: 14-21 I pray before God that he will take care of you, for He can do anything!
St. John 6 :1-21 Jesus says that all who believe in God shall have eternal life.
One of my Commentaries entitles this Psalm as ‘Outline of a Corrupt Society’. When I first read this in ‘The Message’, which is a modern paraphrase of the Bible, it struck me as to how apt it was for July 19th, indeed, for this present time. The media has told us that over the pandemic, the rich have got richer and the poor poorer. The foodbanks have never been busier. We have seen how some of those with power have twisted the rules to suit themselves whilst the ordinary folk have tried to obey the restrictions as understood by them. David thought he was above the Law of God, that he could do anything he wanted, but God sent him both a reminder that the powerful are not free to abuse the poor, and a punishment for his wrongdoing. In John’s gospel the passage follows on from the feeding of the 5000; Jesus tells the people that whilst they seek him for the wonders he performs in front of them, those are only material signs of the spiritual wonders in their lives he could give the World. And in Ephesians we have one of my favourite closing doxologies, oh that the whole world could be “being rooted and established in love, may have power to grasp how ‘great’ is the love of Christ”. “…….to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all the generations, for ever and ever!
If ever there was a need for Christ’s love and compassion in this world it is now.
Read the separate document issued above within this weekly Update!
St Columba’s Coffee and Conversation
on Saturdays at 10.00 a.m.
Meet friends for conversation and company, online or by phone