Call to Prayer Sunday 18th April 2021

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During these past months, we have been disturbed and disturbed profoundly. All that we had taken for granted, up until even a year ago, seems to be placed into question. Things are not as they were and we do not yet know how they will be.

The disciples of Jesus had been disturbed and disturbed profoundly by all that had happened in the events leading up to his crucifixion. The reports that had come to them since that time had, in a sense, disturbed them even more. All that they had taken for granted seemed to be placed into question and they remained afraid. It is to those disciples that Jesus comes and speaks these words: ‘Peace be with you.’ The Risen Lord stands among them and his word is: ‘Peace be with you.’ So disturbed have they been that they react with fear and doubt. In response, Jesus invites them to reach out as his presence is renewed and revealed. (Luke 24: 36-48)

In the providence of God, we give thanks for the progress that we have made as a society in addressing the challenges of our times. In the providence of God, we give thanks for the presence of the Risen Lord whose word to us today is: ‘Peace be with you.’

Living God,
Your word to us through the Risen Lord is:
Peace be with you.
Amidst the disturbance of the times,
May we hear your word and embrace the peace you offer.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Your word to us through the Risen Lord is:
Peace be with you.
When the foundations are shaken and the certainties no longer sure,
May you speak to us in the still small voice of calm.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Your word to us through the Risen Lord is:
Peace be with you.
When we are fearful and troubled,
May you speak to the depths of our fears and still our troubled hearts.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Your word to us through the Risen Lord is:
Peace be with you.
As we hear his voice,
May we reach out to the One whose presence is renewed and revealed before us.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Your word to us through the Risen Lord is:
Peace be with you.
As we experience the renewal of life within our family and community,
May we bear witness to your abiding presence among us.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Rt Rev Dr John Armes, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)

Call to Prayer 4th April 2021

Easter Sunday – Print version

The day of Resurrection begins ‘while it was still dark’ and takes us to the place where the Lord has been buried and sealed away. The journey through the week past began with ‘Hosanna!’ and ended in ‘Crucify!’ In the darkness of that morning, it is Mary Magdalene who first senses that the journey, seemingly ended on the Cross, has yet further to unfold. Mary remains at the tomb, consumed by sorrow and tears, until she finds herself in the company of a person whom she does not recognise. Into the depth of her sorrow, a voice speaks and calls her by her name: ‘Mary!’ It is as if the voice speaks into the very depths of her heart and her eyes are opened. In that moment there is the recognition that she stands in the presence of the risen Lord and in time Mary will bear witness: ‘I have seen the Lord’. (John 20: 1-18)

On this day of Resurrection, the risen Lord speaks to all who have journeyed in dark places and who have known sorrow and tears. He speaks into the depths of our heart and calls us by our name. In response, we join with the people of God and proclaim: ‘Christ is risen. He is risen indeed. Alleluia!’ We pray:

God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
In your great mercy
You give us new birth into a living hope
Through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
On this day, receive our praise and our thanks forever!
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
In your great mercy
You have journeyed with us through the darkness
And you bring us now to the day of light.
Lead us through the darkness and into the abiding light of your presence.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
In your great mercy
You journey with those who have known sorrow and tears.
In your compassion, journey with them still
And bring to them healing and the hope of the life everlasting.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
In your great mercy
You speak into the depths of our hearts
And you call us by our name.
Call us by our name that we might proclaim: Christ is risen. Alleluia!
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
In your great mercy
You give us new birth into a living hope
Through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
On this day, receive our praise and our thanks forever!
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)

Call to Prayer Sunday 28 March 2021

As we stand at the threshold of the final journey of Jesus into Jerusalem and on towards the Cross, we find ourselves in the company of those who have gone before us on that journey. The ‘great crowd’ who enter into Jerusalem are those who gather for the annual marking of the Feast of the Passover. They come to remember and to give thanks for the enduring love of God. One of the Psalms used in the Feast opens with the call: ‘O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his steadfast love endures forever!’ In turn, the Psalmist cries: ‘Open to me the gates of righteousness, that I may enter through them and give thanks to the Lord.’ (Psalm 118: 1, 19) In the Gospel of John, we see Jesus entering Jerusalem and welcomed, as one ‘who comes in the name of the Lord!’, with shouts of ‘Hosanna!’ and ‘palm branches’. (John 12: 12-16) The cry ‘Hosanna!’ shall soon be replaced by ‘Crucify!’  and the ‘palm branches’ by a Cross, but in faith we believe that ‘the enduring love of God’ shall remain unvanquished.

On this Palm Sunday, we stand on the threshold of a time of renewal within our community and in the life of the Church and we join the company of all God’s people to give thanks for the love that endures and conquers even death. We pray:

God whose love endures,
Hear us as we welcome the One who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hear us, as we remember
All that you have done in times past
And give thanks that your enduring love has embraced even us.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures,
Hear us as we welcome the One who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hear us, as we gather in the company of your people,
Or in company alone with you,
And lift up our voices to cry: Hosanna!
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures,
Hear us as we welcome the One who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hear us, as we journey
Through the week that is to come.
May we journey in the presence of the One who goes before us, even to the Cross.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures,
Hear us as we welcome the One who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hear us, as we listen to the voices
Who now cry: Crucify!
And may we know it was for us he hung and suffered there.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures,
Hear us as we welcome the One who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hear us, as we wait
For the dawn to break
And for your enduring love to vanquish the darkness.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland) 

Call to Prayer 21 March 2021

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On the Anniversary of the first Lockdown on the 23rd of March, we will undoubtedly reflect on all that has happened in the past year and acknowledge the profound impact the Covid-19 pandemic has had upon us personally and communally. There is not one of us who has not felt the impact of these times in one way or another. Above all else, we shall acknowledge the loss of life and recognise that behind each number recorded there lies a person whose life is known to God and who is mourned by those who have loved them. In their passing, we are the poorer. In the remembrance of a life given by God, we are the richer.

The Letter to the Hebrews records that: ‘In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears’. (Hebrews 5: 7) Jesus is called to take the place of the one who offers prayers on behalf of us all, and does so with ‘cries and tears’ because he himself has ‘suffered’. (Hebrews 5: 5-10) He shares in the suffering of the world and brings the suffering of the world before God. In all our reflections at this time, we remember the One who prayed for us in ‘the days of his flesh’ and who, even now, lives to pray for us once more. We pray:

Living God, in whose image we are made,
Hear us we ask, through your Son who prays for us.
Hear us, as we recall all we have endured as community and Nation
In the year that has passed.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God, who knows us in all our suffering,
Hear us we ask, through your Son who prays for us.
Hear us, as we reflect across the Nation
And remember those who have suffered the deepest loss.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God, whose name is Love,
Hear us we ask, through your Son who prays for us.
Hear us, as we reach out our hand to those who suffer still
And stand with them in the face of all that is to come.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God, who gives good gifts to all Creation,
Hear us we ask, through your Son who prays for us.
Hear us, as we give thanks for those who, in hospital and in care home,
Have cared for the dying and the sick.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God, who inspires Hope,
Hear us we ask, through your Son who prays for us.
Hear us, as we acknowledge and give thanks for all who have created the vaccines
That give hope to the peoples of all Nations.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God, who gives Light to the World, even in the face of Darkness,
Hear us we ask, through your Son who prays for us.
Hear us, as we bow in the presence of the One who,
In the days of his flesh, shed tears for us.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)

Call to Prayer 14th March 2021

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We have endured much during these past months. Personally and communally, we have endured challenges which we could not have anticipated, or imagined, even a year ago. We have endured much and undoubtedly there have been times when the limits of our endurance have been tested.

Woven into this has been the recollection of that which has also endured, the steadfast love of God. The Psalmist recalls the people of God to a remembrance of the ‘steadfast love’ of the Lord which ‘endures for ever’. (Psalm 107: 1) As we remember and recall, we bear witness to the truth that the love of God spans the whole breadth of our lives and embraces all that we experience and endure. This is given supreme expression in the self-giving of God in Jesus Christ: ‘For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son’. (John 3: 16)

In all we have endured and will endure, the ‘steadfast love’ of the Lord ‘endures for ever’ in the God whose love is revealed in Jesus Christ. We pray:

God whose love endures
And is revealed in Jesus Christ,
May we hear the words of the Psalmist
Who calls us to remember:
The steadfast love of the Lord endures for ever.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures
And is revealed in Jesus Christ,
Be with us in all we endure at this time.
Grant that we may know your love
In days of light and in days of shadow.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures
And is revealed in Jesus Christ,
Be with all who find themselves
At the limit of their endurance
And embrace them in the depths of your enduring love.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures
And is revealed in Jesus Christ,
As a mother comforts her child
May you comfort all who call upon you.
Hear us, as we give thanks for all who have nurtured us in this life.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures
And is revealed in Jesus Christ,
Grant to us a vision of a community and society
That will endure in times to come
And hear us as we pray: Thy Kingdom Come.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose love endures
And is revealed in Jesus Christ,
May we live our lives
In response to the gift of the life of your Son
In whose life is love embodied.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)  

Call to Prayer 7 March 2021

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During these past months we have become used, or not as the case may be, to living within much more circumscribed and defined spaces. As a consequence, we might well have become more conscious of the locality in which we live. Undoubtedly, the spaces that we inhabit and the places in which we live shape us and mould us. Equally, there are particular places and spaces that we associate with significant events and experiences. Space and place are woven into the rhythm of life.

In each of the four Gospels there are accounts of the cleansing of the Temple in Jerusalem. In the Gospel of John, Jesus journeys to that particular space within that particular locality. (John 2: 13-22) He does so because it is the time of the Passover and the journey he makes is one made in the company of the many thousands who came to Jerusalem at that time. What does Jesus find? He finds that the Temple space has become a “market-place” inhabited by sellers and ‘money-changers’. Those who object to his cleansing of the Temple demand to know: “What sign can you show us for doing this?” In reply, Jesus speaks prophetically of the destruction of “this temple”, by which he means himself, and of being raised “in three days”.

In this sign, we see the presence of God embodied in the life of Jesus, and his life, located in a particular place and time, opening our horizons to the God who meets us in the place where we are today. We pray:

God of Space and Time,
Meet us in the place where we are today.
Meet us in the place where we are
And transform us by the presence of your Son.
In this place, may we encounter the One who embodies your love.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of Space and Time,
Meet us in the place where we are today. Meet us at the break of day
And be with us in all that lies before us.In the place in which we live, may we see life renewed.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of Space and Time,
Meet us in the place where we are today.
Meet us in the place of suffering
And bring your healing presence among us.
In the place of suffering, enable us to reach out to those beside us.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of Space and Time,
Meet us in the place where we are today.
Meet us in the place of sorrow
And bring your light into our darkness.
In the place of sorrow, may we become bearers of your light.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of Space and Time,
Meet us in the place where we are today.
Meet us in the rhythm of life
And renew hope within us.
In the community in which we live, may we bear witness to the God of hope.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of Space and Time,
Meet us in the place where we are today.
Meet us at the close of day
And be with us through the night.
Keep us safe and bring us to the dawn of a new day.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)

Call to Prayer Sunday 28 February 2021

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There are times in the Gospels when it is clear that the disciples of Jesus have real difficulty in understanding his teaching. On one such occasion, Jesus speaks openly about what lies before him and afterwards Peter ‘took him aside and began to rebuke him’. (Mark 8: 31-32) Peter is clear that death and resurrection are not part of that future and, as he speaks, it is equally clear that he has not yet understood the way that Jesus must take.

There are times in the past months when all of us have had real difficulty in understanding the challenges faced within our society and across the globe. We have been unclear as to what the future holds and the path to be taken. In all of this, we have not been alone.

As the Gospel account unfolds, Jesus gathers the crowd around him and invites them to ‘take up their cross and follow me’. (Mark 8: 34) As we journey into the future and follow the path taken by Jesus, we know that we are not alone. We journey in the way of the cross and in the hope of the resurrection. We pray:

God of hope,
Be with us as we journey into the future that lies before us.
Be with us through your Son
Who has journeyed in the way of the Cross.
Grant to us grace and faith that we might follow him.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of hope,
Be with us as we journey into the future that lies before us.
In all we face,
Be near to us, and all whom we love,
And guard us safe in your presence.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of hope,
Be with us as we journey into the future that lies before us.
Be with those who fear this day
And who struggle to see the future.
Lead us from the darkness into your light.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of hope,
Be with us as we journey into the future that lies before us.
Be with those who grieve this day
And who feel bereft of comfort.
In your compassion, be near to them.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of hope,
Be with us as we journey into the future that lies before us.
In all that is faced by our society today,
Grant wisdom, insight and understanding
To those who are called to govern our nation and act on our behalf.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God of hope,
Be with us as we journey into the future that lies before us.
Be with us through your Son
Whose journey in the way of the Cross
Yields the hope of the Resurrection.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland) 

Call to Prayer 21 February 2021

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The beginning of the public ministry of Jesus is recorded in direct and immediate terms in the Gospel of Mark. We begin in Nazareth in Galilee and are then transported to the River Jordan. We see Jesus baptised and then driven out into the wilderness for forty days. The ministry of Jesus then begins as he proclaims: ‘The time has come… The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news.’ (Mark 1: 9-15) It is as if the account compresses time in order to capture and express the significance of the moment.

Our experience of the passing of time over recent months is perhaps unlike anything we have ever collectively known. On the one hand, the experience of lockdown and restriction, and the absence of the rhythms of life, has almost dislocated us from the normal experience of the passing of time. On the other hand, the relocation of worship, work and social interaction to digital platforms has rapidly transformed the times in which we live. These two things, alongside many others, are happening at one and the same time and we cannot yet tell how they will finally shape future times.

Although we cannot tell how the future will unfold, what we can do is recognise that the kingdom of God is at hand and, in the light of this, resolve to journey with Jesus towards the place of the Cross. The gift of time, in the light of God’s Kingdom, is an opportunity to live out our response to the Good News of Jesus.

God whose kingdom is near
And who knows the times in which we live,
May we hear the call of Your Son
And turn once more to embrace the Good News He proclaims.
In the times in which we live,
Grant us grace to do so.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose kingdom is near

And who knows the times in which we live,
Your Son has embraced time
And became truly human for us and for our salvation.
As we face the hard challenges of these days
May we know that we are embraced by Your Son.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose kingdom is near
And who knows the times in which we live,
Be with those for whom this day is hard
And who long for respite.
Be with those who seek to bring healing and comfort
And grant them wisdom and compassion to do so.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

God whose kingdom is near
And who knows the times in which we live,
Be with us as we resolve to journey with Your Son
In the days that lie before us.
Whether in the wilderness, or by the living waters,
May we know Your presence ever renewed.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)

Call to Prayer 14th February 2021

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In the Gospel of Mark, we find the disciples of Jesus journeying with him and experiencing something which they struggle to comprehend and express. Jesus takes Peter, James and John to ‘a high mountain’ and there he is ‘transfigured before them’ in the company of Elijah and Moses. How do the disciples respond? Peter, as ever, makes an attempt to respond but truly he ‘did not know what to say, for they were terrified’. (Mark 9: 2-9)

In the midst of all we face at this time, we are confronted by that for which nothing has truly prepared us as a society. As the experience of Lockdown continues, we are learning a great deal about the strengths and weaknesses of our society. As we do so, we are coming to understand that the future will not simply be a reversion to the ‘normal’ of the past.

As the disciples struggle to comprehend what they see before their eyes, they are overshadowed by the presence of God and hear the words of affirmation: ‘This is my Son, the Beloved, listen to him!’ Then, in an instant, ‘when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus’. As we journey into the future, we do so in the company of the One who transforms our present and who invites us to share in the promise of the coming Kingdom of God. We pray:

Living God,
Speak to us in the place where we are today
And make your presence known.
Speak to us the words of affirmation
That we may know that we are loved by you.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Speak to us in the place where we are today;
Even in the face of darkness.
Speak into the uncertainty of our times
And reassure us that you hold the future.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Speak to us in the place where we are today
And bring hope for days to come.
Speak words of comfort and of healing
And words of compassion for those who mourn.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Speak to us in the place where we are today,
That we might speak a word for our times.
Speak into the future that lies before us
And grant us grace as we seek to live out that future.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Living God,
Speak to us in the place where we are today,
That we might hear again your voice.
Speak to us on the highest heights, and in the deepest depths,
And may we know, and be known by, the One whom you love.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Donnie G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)

Call to Prayer 7th February 2021

Call to Prayer: Sunday 7th February 2021 Print version

Prayer @ 7pm

At this time, we are those who wait. In common with every member of our community and our nation, we are those who wait for the renewal of life within the families and communities of which we are a part. The time of waiting has now exceeded anything we might have imagined as we began the first Lockdown, and as we wait many have grown weary.

The prophet Isaiah speaks to a people who have waited and whose time of waiting has exceeded anything they might have imagined. (Isaiah 40: 21-31) During the time of waiting, the people of Israel have grown weary. To those people, the word of the Lord comes through the prophet and they are given a vision of ‘the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth’ who ‘does not faint or grow weary’. Even in the longest times, the word of the Lord speaks to those who have come to the end of their strength with the assurance that:

‘those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint’. (Isaiah 40: 31)

We are those who wait and our waiting is not in vain. We pray:

Everlasting God,
Creator of the ends of the earth,
We are those who wait
And we confess that we have grown weary.
Speak to us we ask and hear our cry.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Everlasting God,
Creator of the ends of the earth,
We are those who wait
And who have come to the end of our own strength.
Lift up the weary and strengthen the powerless.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Everlasting God,
Creator of the ends of the earth,
We are those who wait
And who have heard your Word echo in our hearts.
Grant us grace for this time and faith to believe your promise.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Everlasting God,
Creator of the ends of the earth,
We are those who wait
And who ask that your promise will be fulfilled.
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Everlasting God,
Creator of the ends of the earth,
We are those who wait
Lord, in your mercy,
Hear our prayer.

Signed by:

  • Rt. Rev. Dr Martin Fair, Moderator of the General Assembly, Church of Scotland
  • Most Rev. Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Roman Catholic Church
  • Most Rev. Mark Strange, Primus, on behalf of the College of Bishops, Scottish Episcopal Church
  • Rev. John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Rev. Paul Whittle, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • Rev. May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Lt. Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Rev. Claire Fender, District Superintendent, British Isles North District, Church of the Nazarene
  • Pastor Chris Gbenle, Provincial Pastor, Province of Scotland, Redeemed Christian Church of God
  • Bishop Francis Alao, Church of God (Scotland)/Minority Ethnic Churches Together in Scotland (MECTIS)
  • Rev Fred Drummond, Director, Evangelical Alliance (Scotland)