Newsletter from the minister

Categories: Church,Events,Newsletter,Outreach

Dear Friends,

Greetings to you once again!
The small group that are planning our return to ‘live’ church met last night and we made some important decisions, which are as follows:

  • All being well, we are hoping to return to Sunday morning services in the church on Sunday, September 13th. That is the plan and the hope, but with the recent rise in COVID cases, we are keeping this under review.
  • These services will be subject to all the rules and protocols of COVID: social distancing will be enforced.
  • Numbers will, therefore, be limited and we will have a system of booking seats for services, both online but also through other channels, including telephone booking and WhatsApp. Elders will be in touch with their people, as with this letter, and people not familiar or confident about computer use will also be able to book through them. More on that nearer the time!
  • Exactly how the booking system will work will depend on how many people apply for seats in church and whether or not the number limit is exceeded.
  • There will be no refreshments after the service.
    There will be no hymn singing, though there will be hymns sung by a small group and the congregation will participate silently.
    Services will be ‘live-streamed’: in other words, those who do not wish to attend the service in church or who cannot be able to watch it ‘live’ online. The live service will be recorded and the recording put up on the website later on Sunday, so there will be plenty of opportunity to watch services for those who do not attend.
    Sunday school and Junior Church will be offered. I hope that puts everyone in the picture, as far as we can, given a fluid and changing situation.

I leave for a holiday next Wednesday, July 29th, returning Friday, August 21st. During that time I will not be sending out this weekly letter, but I will do the day I get back, August 21st.

We then have 3 weeks to prepare, hopefully, for this limited return to church – assuming all goes well and we are not forced to postpone it.

While I am away John Bell, and old friend to our church, will believing in the manse and covering any pastoral emergencies, so don’t hesitate to get in touch with him. He and I are sharing the conduct of worship for the next two weeks – he is preaching – with these two services pre-recorded before I leave, and the next two weeks will be conducted by him alone.

Below, as usual, events THIS WEEK:

Sunday 10.30 (or any other time, it’s prerecorded).
The service will be led this week by Pastor Lance with Rev John Bell preaching. Our passage is Genesis 6:11-12; 7:7-12; 8:14-19, 9:8-16, the story of Noah and the flood (following on from a few weeks ago).

Sunday, 21.00
Short evening prayers, Compline: Join us on
ZOOM

Monday, 14.00-16.00: Knitting Christmas angels. Contact Gillian Walker at: gillian.walker.ams@icloud.com

Tuesday, 08.45
Psalm Reciting (this week – Psalms 47-55), at the church. You are welcome, of course, to recite these psalms anywhere and any time.
Note: there will be no psalm reciting at the Church on Tuesday August 4th , but this will resume on Tuesday August 11th

Wednesday, 19.30
Please note that the Bible Study has now finished until September.

Thursday, 21.00
Short evening prayers, Compline: You can join us on ZOOM

Prayer:
In a time like this, there may be people who feel especially in need of prayer either for themselves or for someone else. There is a small group of people in the congregation who take it in turns on Sundays to be available after the service to pray for anyone in need – so, if you would like prayer or have a particular prayer request please contact Margaret Richards on margaretanne_richards@hotmail.com and she and the others will pray accordingly.

A word about finance….
Please note that in this period when we are not meeting together there is a way of giving to the church on this website. Please use the PayPal donation button on the right.

God bless you all and keep us united as a church family – and safe and well.

Rev. Dr. Lance Stone