30 Northumberland Square | North Shields | NE30 1PW
Weekly Update #77 3rd October 2021
From the Minister
All creatures of our God and King, lift up your voice with us sing, Alleluia, alleluia!
Saint Francis of Assisi (b. c.1181) died today, the 3rd of October, in 1226. He was a preacher and a mystic, and the founder of the Franciscan order. It’s thought that he organised the first Christmas live nativity scene, to celebrate the birth of Jesus. He is known for his love of animals and the natural environment. In the Roman catholic tradition he’s the patron saint of ecology, and the hymn All Creatures of Our God and King is attributed to him. In a time of climate crisis, and with the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) soon to take place in Glasgow, it’s good to remember that Christian concern for creation is not a recent fad but a longstanding, significant part of our shared life. Let all things their creator bless, and worship God in humbleness O praise him, alleluia!
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace: where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. Amen.
Radio 4 Sunday Worship 8.10 a.m. OnlineURC audio service https://devotions.urc.org.uk/ 10.00 a.m. Television BBC 1 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 1:1; 2:1-10 What if God arranged for blameless people to suffer?
Psalm 26 A prayer to receive justice from God
Genesis 2: 18 – 24 People need helpers and partners
Psalm 8 How great (or humble) are God’s human creatures
Hebrews 1:1-4; 2:5-12 God speaks to us through a human being
Mark 10:2-16 Breaking the bonds between people
It’s very hard to get away from the notion that God ought to reward people and punish the bad (especially if you see yourself as ‘good’). This is despite the abundant evidence that bad things happen to good people, and not so good folk get away with all sorts of bad things. Whoever wrote the Book of Job thought hard about this and wrote a story (it might be an instructive tale, not history) about one ‘blameless and upright’ (1:1) person whose faith in God is tested by extreme suffering. Early in the story Job asks, ‘Shall we receive the good at the hand of God and not receive the bad?’ (2:10) Or to put it the other way around, we might hold God responsible when things go wrong for us, but only if we acknowledge God’s responsible for the good things as well. That’s not a definitive answer to ‘the problem of suffering’, but, like the book as whole, it’s part of the ongoing conversation we need to have.
At our Church Meeting talked about how worship in the building is proceeding, how the church finances remain robust, and (slow) progress on building work. We heard about Café 2.21 first day of business after reopening and about the generous donation made to Nite Bite at our harvest service. There was news of plans about future ministerial deployment in Northern Synod, and we agreed to have a ministry student on placement with St Columba’s from October until easter next year
For minutes of the meeting, see the email or hard copy version of the Weekly Update.
For a report about Churches Together in North Shields, see the email or hard copy version of the Weekly Update.
To find out more about Roberta, our placement student, Click Here
Traidcraft Resumes Trading!
Aileen Grant now has the latest Traidcarft catalogues, which she will be distributing at church from this Sunday. If you can’t get to church to collect one please contact Aileenkgrant@gmail.com
Operation Christmas Child will be happening in November. Shoeboxes have been ordered and will be arriving soon. Anyone able to fill a shoebox with gifts will be very much appreciated. Scarves, hats, gloves, toys have been very kindly donated from a Knitting Club which will be available alongside the shoeboxes in October. For further information, contact Shirley McKay firstname.lastname@example.org
Café 2.21 and Square Table Lunches open for buisness
Café 2.21 – from Tuesday 21st September, 10.00 a.m. – 1.00 p.m., for tea, coffee, scones, cakes, light lunches
Square Table Lunches – from Thursday 23rd September, 11.30 a.m. – 1.00 p.m., for soup, sandwiches, tray bakes, tea and coffee
Please Observe the Covid precautions to keep everyone Safe
Meeting Euro Pilgrims Due to Land at North Shields on 12th October
A group of pilgrims from churches in Europe are walking from Poland to Glasgow, in time for UN Climate Change Conference, which begins at the end of October. They are due to arrive on the ferry in North Shields on the morning of 12th October. Members from churches in North Shields will walk with them from the ferry terminal to St Cuthbert’s Roman Catholic Church for a reception. After that, everyone’s invited to accompany them on part or all of their first day’s walk, to Whitley Bay and then to Blyth. Details of the day are here If you are interested in walking or simply being at the reception please contact Trevor Jamison (though you can just come along on the day).
Street Pastors Seeking Volunteers to work on Fish Quay
Keeping in Touch
You can contact your designated Elder, the Minister, or Church Secretary.