Letter from Kevin 15th August
To the church of God at St Columba and St Leonard, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be his holy people, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ—their Lord and ours: Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. I always thank my God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus.
Hello church family!
Particularly for those of you following the St Columba Bible reading plan you might have spotted that the words above are not the wonderfully eloquent words of the new curate at all, but in fact the slightly modified opening of the 1st letter to the Corinthians which was the reading at the start of the week, I love the way Paul writes to the church here, and I think it’s good to remind ourselves that these words have meaning to more than the church in Corinth to whom they were originally written, that they apply to us today “Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ”, what a fantastic way to greet someone, reminding them of the truth of our gospel message.
It’s been good in these first few weeks to get to meet some of the church family here, even though circumstances have not been ideal – from Coronavirus lockdown, social distancing to illness within the Montgomery family, but it’s been a real blessing to be here, and from all in the Montgomery family can I say thank you for your prayers, particularly for Kate over this season. As I write she is still in hospital but does appear to have shown some improvement and we are praying for the proper production of blood, a strengthened immune system and for Kate’s temperature to remain steady.
THIS WEEK’S SERVICE
My thanks to Rosie for putting this week’s service together and to everyone who is faithfully contributing to bringing these online service to life. As usual there is a words copy of the service and there are also some great Energize resources on part two of the Lord’s Prayer.
This week’s service can be found here;
Happily we also have another great set of puzzles from Steve, who despite some computer issues has managed to supply us with some more brain-teasers.
We as a family have been on the receiving end of much gratefully received prayer this season and it has been a real comfort and a blessing, if you have prayer requests do share them with Ian or myself or the church family as you feel able. We would love to pray for you and with you.
Rosie has wonderfully brought some of the story of VJ day to us as part of the service and today commemorates the 75th anniversary of VJ Day (Victory over Japan Day), the day World War Two officially ended, for many much of the immediacy and reality of war stopped on VE day but for those involved in the conflict in east Asia there was still much adversity and sacrifice during those weeks and of course the later realities of the horrors of the prisoner of war camps and the repercussions of the two atomic bombs dropped by the USA to bring the war to an end. Today we pray for all of those who were affected by the conflict both at the time and in later years, we pray for peace and understanding. Captain Sir Tom Moore, who served in Burma and most recently famously raised millions for the NHS has been quoted as saying “It was VJ Day when the pain of war could finally start to fall away as peace was declared on all fronts, I respectfully ask Britain to stop whatever it is doing and take some time to remember. We must all take the time to stop, think and be thankful that were it not for the ultimate sacrifices made all those years ago by such a brave band of men and women, we would not be enjoying the freedoms we have today, even in these current difficult times."
HOPE FROM ABOVE
Here is the August Prayer Update from Hope from Above, I know many of you are praying faithfully for them and the message of hope they are bringing to many.
NEW WINE AND SPRING HARVEST
It was great to see so many people’s reflections on the teaching, prayer and worship from New Wine, if you haven’t managed to watch it yet and want to it is still available from https://breaksout.new-wine.org – just scroll down the page to see this years teaching. It’s also great to see that both New Wine and Spring Harvest are starting to advertise their 2021 events, and we are hoping and praying that things will be going well enough for both of these great events to happen. I know a big part of the church family goes to Spring Harvest together and I’m looking forward to being part of that next year!
RESTARTING SERVICES AT ST COLUMBA AND THE WEEK AHEAD
I know many of you will be looking forward eagerly to the starting of services in church again, and we will be in touch shortly to confirm details and how it is all going to work, in the meantime please be praying that the organisation for the services will go smoothly and that we can meet together safely and appropriately to worship God together.
There’s a new week to look forward to, and what better way to finish this than to echo the words of Paul from the end of that letter to the Corinthians, the grace of the Lord Jesus be with you. My love to all of you in Christ Jesus. Amen.