Greetings to you once again and I hope this finds you well.
This week we find ourselves in the season of the Christian year known as ‘Epiphany’ – a word which means ‘unveiling’ or ‘revealing’. The idea is that the passages of Scripture that we follow in this time reveal something of the truth of who the baby born in Bethlehem is. This Sunday the Gospel reading (which we will not be considering) describes the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist in the River Jordan. As he comes up out of the water we are told that the heavens are torn apart, God’s Spirit descends like a dove, and a voice is heard from heaven saying, ‘you are my Son, the Beloved…’. Here is what is being revealed of Jesus: he is God’s Son, beloved of God. This happened of course out in the desert, a harsh and difficult place, a place of deprivation where you might not expect to find blessing. The desert might be a place associated with God’s absence – yet Jesus and those others who went out to receive John’s baptism found it otherwise. Unexpectedly, they found grace.
What an appropriate text for this time. Under the constraints and deprivations of Covid, I pray that you may be surprised by moments of grace when the heavens seem to open and you encounter blessing, and hear the voice of God.
All good wishes for another week – this week’s programme is below.
Sunday, 10.30 hrs, live- streamed service
You can access the live-stream at 10.30 via this link: https://youtu.be/mGzxHrVNpt4 . You can also access it through the website.
Our reading for this Sunday, the first after Epiphany, is Genesis 1:1-5.
Sunday, 21.00 hrs
Short evening prayers, Compline
Tuesday, 08.45 hrs:
Psalm Reciting (this week Psalms 47-55). We will not meet at the church for this, but you might like to participate from your from our home at 8.45 or some other time.
In this time 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 a particular prayer request please contact Margaret Richards on firstname.lastname@example.org 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 the website.
God bless you all and keep us united as a church family – and safe and well.