Thought for the Week by Rev Gayle Taylor

Today, as the world’s eyes are on the exit of one President and the entrance of another, we pray for the USA and all the other nations of our world. In his victory speech following his election, Joe Biden, a devout Catholic, quoted from Ecclesiates chapter 3 “For everything there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven.” The world hopes that his words about his Presidency being a “time for healing” will come to fruition from this inauguration day forward. After 4 of the most divisive and destructive years in relation to economics, race, climate change and the pandemic, the USA and it’s partners throughout the world surely pray together for healing and peace.

This week’s prayer :


Prayer for the Nations (from Thy Kingdom Come)
As we continue to pray for the nations of the world, we particularly want to pray for our leaders and those in government responsible for making hard decisions.

We pray for peace, wisdom and understanding and a deep commitment to serve all.

At this time, we pray especially for the USA as their nation makes the transition from Trump to Biden’s presidency this week. Amen

     
At this difficult time, we are aware of the many opportunities and challenges placed on the Church and pray for it’s leaders and congregations too.

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 

Did you know that from 18th-25th January is the week of Prayer for Christian Unity? To find out more, including prayer resources visit their website

This week’s music:

Sunday Worship – 17th January 2021 by Rev Gayle Taylor

Sitting in different chairs, joining in at different times throughout the day, God’s people still gather for worship on this, the Lord’s day. Welcome, to Sunday worship.

Call to worship:

Welcome to church:

not a place, but an invitation;

not a building, but a way of engaging;

not a service, but a way of serving;

not an institution, but a path to adventure.

In this new year,

let us gather,

and welcome each other:

make space for all,

decide to love more,

and break the rules of the world

with the generosity of the kingdom.

And if anyone asks “why?”

or “how?” or “what does it all mean?”

simply use Jesus’ own words:

“Come and see!”

HYMN – Lord, you have come to the Seashore (sing aloud at home)

All-Age Prayer (using gestures as well as words)

Loving God

may we pray

less with statements

and more with questions.

Draw a large question mark in the air with your hands.

May we pray

less with sounds

and more with silence.

Put a finger to your lips.

May we pray

less with words

and more with acts.

Clench fists and place one on top of the other repeatedly

like you are building up .

So we may see

and feel

and know

there is something new,

indescribable,

here for us all

new every day:

your love

for us all

Place your hands over your heart, crossed over.

Amen.

Reading: John 1 v 43 – 51 read by Tracy Teasdale

Dramatised Reading:

Reflection:

HYMN – When Jesus Saw the Fishermen

Prayers for Others and Ourselves

Loving God

our simple prayer

and our deep hope

is for your kingdom

to be found

between our neighbours

in the love we share

between our nations,

in the compassion we offer

between all people,

in the peace we make.

There

may we all see

your kingdom

grow.

And so we bring our words

and our longings

and shape them into

the relationships we build this year

and affirm the truth

that in our relationships

is where your kingdom will be found.

We pray for those in conflict,

for refugees and the displaced,

for so many who suffer in so many ways

from disease, hunger, fear, and division.

This is not of your kingdom

and it does not need to be the story of our world.

We pray for our governments,

for Westminster and Edinburgh

for Brussels and Washington,

Moscow and Beijing,

and the longing to find stability and a future

that is balanced and fair,

equally shared,

and Kingdom-shaped.

We pray for our congregation and parish,

for our neighbours around us

and the way we live and speak together

of love and grace and truth.

And we pray for our families and friends,

for those ill and those recovering,

for those grieving and hurting,

those anxious and worried,

fearful and afraid

and for the love that directs us

and calls us

and challenges us

to be your people,

to see your kingdom

between us,

among us,

through us.

So be it.

Amen.

HYMN – Behold I make all things new

Offering – in addition to the physical offerings we usually make in church, you can now donate online via the donate button on the main page of the website. We also offer our time and talents for the work of the Kingdom.

Prayer of Dedication

Creator God,

here is the invitation

to possibility,

that we open up,

that those who are hungry,

hurt,

longing,

unwelcome,

may come and see

where the kingdom is made,

in the sharing of gifts,

the finding of the lost,

and the welcoming of the stranger.

May this be done

through our own response

to come and see

the possibilities

of the kingdom.

Amen.

HYMN – Will You Come and Follow Me

Sending

Today, we came and saw.

Today, tomorrow and always

may we renew our invitation to others to come and see

Jesus for themselves.

And as we do,

may we go in peace to love and to serve

with the blessing of God almighty… Amen