Call to Prayer 19 April 2020

Prayer @ 7pm

As we find ourselves living through a renewed phase of Lockdown, we see in the Gospel of John (20: 19-23) that, in part, the experience of the disciples, even on the day of Resurrection, was one in which they found themselves locked in and behind closed doors.

Their experience of Lockdown was interrupted by the presence of Jesus as he came and stood among them. He speaks into the depths of their fears and anxieties: ‘Peace be with you.’ We hear these words and know that they speak to us. We listen again for what he will say and discover that Jesus simply repeats himself: ‘Peace be with you.’ As we still ourselves, we hear those words of peace spoken and sense that they are spoken to us and to all who long to hear a word that heals and reassures: ‘Peace be with you.’

We pray:

Living God, speak into the depths of our experience,
Speak the word that stills our fears
And calms our anxieties:
‘Peace be with you.’

Speak your word to the lonely and to the broken,
To the bereaved and to those whose world has crumbled:
‘Peace be with you.’

 

Faithful God, speak to us behind locked doors
As we remember others, who risk their own safety,
In order to serve others:
Peace be with them.

Carers and nurses, doctors and ambulance drivers,
Delivery drivers and shop assistants:
Peace be with them.

God who inspires Hope, speak to us in the present
And speak to us of the future,
For though the doors are locked, in time they shall be open:
Peace shall be renewed.

For those who lead the life of our Nation: Our Queen Elizabeth,
First Minister and Prime Minister, and all who shape our common life,
For us all: Peace shall be renewed.

God whose name is love and whose gift is love,
Open our hearts to know you and to love you,
To love you and to love our neighbour
And as we do, to hear again: ‘Peace be with you.’

As we come to the end of our own strength
May we find our strength in you and hear again:
‘Peace be with you.’

Signed by:

  • Rev. Colin Sinclair, 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
  • John Fulton, Moderator, United Free Church of Scotland
  • Dr David Pickering, Moderator, United Reformed Church (Scotland)
  • Martin Hodson, General Director, Baptist Union of Scotland
  • Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland)
  • May-Kane Logan, Chair, Congregational Federation in Scotland
  • Col. Carol Bailey, Secretary for Scotland, Salvation Army
  • Adwoa Bittle, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
  • Jim Ritchie, 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)
  • Donald G. MacDonald, Moderator, Free Church of Scotland

 

Action for Children Emergency Appeal

We have received the following request from Action for Children.

As you know, we work with some of the most vulnerable children and families. We are supporting these families to cover the cost of basic essentials at this time including items such as food, nappies, cleaning products and gas or electricity.

To support this appeal, you can text ‘DONATE’ to 70175 to give £10 or can make a donation via the Action for Children appeal.

Worship in Holy Week

Join us online this week.

  • Rev Andrew Baker, Superintendent minister of the Strathclyde Circuit, is leading 5 minutes of prayer and reflection each day during Holy Week.
    Watch him on his YouTube channel –5 minutes at 5pm
  • Rev Mark Slaney, Chair of the Scottish District of the Methodist Church, will lead worship at 7pm on Maundy Thursday – his YouTube channel is https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqMz31V_plsq89v_KXAAlCw
  • He will lead Good Friday worship at 11am – same channel

Rev Nick Baker offers further suggestions below for those who don’t want to use YouTube:

  • The Home worship for Maundy Thursday was produced by a Methodist Minister – Debbie Hodgson.
  • The Way of the Cross can be used across several days but my suggestion would be for people to use it on Good Friday at 12 noon.
  • Alternatively on Good Friday people may just wish to read the Gospel of John chapters 18 & 19 and reflect quietly upon this.  I suggest some form of cross to hold or place in front of people would be helpful.

Statements by faith leaders

Covid19 Ecumenical Statements

Faith Leaders in Scotland have issued a Faiths Statement.

We commit ourselves to mutual respect and to seek together those opportunities when we can offer ourselves to the service of the people and institutions of Scotland.
We are praying for you and with you, may God be with us.
Read more Faiths Statement

The Scottish Church Leaders Forum offers prayer at the beginning of Holy Week.

In the course of this Holy Week, we know that we shall hear the words of our Lord Jesus Christ: ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ The experience of being abandoned and forsaken is not absent from the life of God lived out in this world. Equally, we are conscious that our faith affirms that this experience does not mark the boundary of the love of God.
Read more Scottish Church Leaders Forum 6 Apr 20

British and Irish Church Leaders offer a statement for Holy Week.

As church leaders from across the many and varied churches of these Islands we urge all people to join us in prayer this Holy Week and Easter; to pray for those who suffer, those who face untimely death and all those who care for them; to celebrate our common faith at a difficult time; to help and support our neighbours in need; and to observe all the safeguards in place to slow the spread of disease.
Read more Holy Week Statement

Worship & Prayer during Covid19 – week 2

week 2

The Chair of the Methodist Church in Scotland will continue to live lead an act of worship this coming Sunday 29th March at 11 am.
There were over 140 live viewers last Sunday (including one person reportedly joining an act of worship for the first time in three years) and over 500 views in total up to mid-week.
You’ll find Rev Mark Slaney’s YouTube channel using this link, where you can tune in on Sunday and subscribe ahead of time to receive notifications.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqMz31V_plsq89v_KXAAlCw and see Mark’s promo for this coming Sunday here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mofmTDtEhig
The Methodist Church in Scotland’s website has a range of other online and worship at home resources.
  • Rev Chris Jackson (Moray Coast, North of Scotland Mission Circuit) has uploaded pre-recorded reflective worship including music and hymns.
  • Rev Andrew Fox (Lerwick, Shetland) offers similar pre-recorded worship including Lent liturgies.
  • In East Glasgow, Rev Laurent Vernet will be posting online live worship.
  • You will find resources for use with Children and Families at home and service sheets you can use for personal worship.
  • Some of you may have responded to the Pope’s call to all Christians to pray The Lord’s Prayer together at 12noon on Wednesday this week.
  • The Church Leaders Forum in Scotland encouraged us to join in the Churches Together call to prayer last Sunday evening at 7pm including lighting a candle and displaying it in a window for all to see.
  • This Churches Together call to prayer is now being extended again to this coming Sunday evening at the same time of 7pm.
In these unusual times though we cannot meet together in our usual places we are finding ways to meet together in virtual places.
We are finding ways to care for one another though distanced, isolated and at least 2 metres apart.
We are responding to a call to pray for our neighbours, our leaders, our world.
May God guide, protect and deliver us.
Amen.

 

Scottish Church Leaders Forum Call to Prayer

Scottish National Day of Prayer 22 March 2020

On behalf of the churches that we serve across Scotland, we warmly commend the Call to a National Day of Prayer, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, and invite people of faith across our nation, to join in prayerful solidarity with this witness.

The invitation is to light a candle at 7pm this Sunday, 22nd March, in the window of our homes as a visible symbol of the light of life, Jesus Christ, the source of hope in this life.

We offer a prayer to use when lighting your candle:

For all that is good in life, thank you,
For the love of family and friends, thank you,
For the kindness of good neighbour and Samaritan stranger, thank you.

May those who are vulnerable, hungry or homeless, experience support,
May those who are sick, know healing,
May those who are anxious or bereaved, sense comfort.

Bless and guide political leaders and decision-makers, with wisdom,
Bless and guide health workers and key workers, with strength and well-being, Bless and guide each one of us, as we adapt to a new way of living.

And may the light shining from our windows,
across road and wynd, glen and ben, kyle and isle,
be reflected in our hearts and hands and hopes.

Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

Candle Safety Note: Please take all necessary fire precautions when using a lit candle. Ensure you remain with the lit candle at all times, and do not leave it to burn if you leave the room. Ensure there are no fabrics or materials such as curtains near the candle. If you are able to use a small electric ‘candle’ instead, that will be safe to leave unattended.

Coronavirus – Should I go to church?

Older members and those with medical conditions causing weaker health and greater vulnerability should not attend church for the time being. This is an act of mutual care and concern, and is not a desire that people ‘give up’ Church.

If you are feeling ill and/or displaying the symptoms of a cold, please stay at home.

Remember Church doesn’t stop because we don’t meet and there are other ways of joining in with worship. Even if you would normally go to church with a cold, the words of 1 Corinthians 8:11 may be useful here: “Think of your weaker (brother/sister)”

If you can’t attend you can download this service sheet to use at home.

Alternatively you can watch a live streamed worship service from Wesley’s Chapel here (starts 11.00am every Sunday)

If you stay away from church

  • If you are unwell or staying away for your own wellbeing, please let someone else from church know.
  • If you are the person who has been told someone is unwell please pass that information straight way to a Steward or Pastoral Secretary.
  • It is the intention to keep on worshipping week by week but you will be contacted if worship has to be cancelled.
  • Please continue to pray for those who are directly affected by the virus and those working to deal with the virus.
  • And remember don’t shake hands, wash them!