Last three months have been extraordinary – this is the first time in more than 800 years since public worship in churches was suspended in England. The church buildings were closed, and no one could enter the buildings and meet up to worship God and fellowship together, and it felt like the church was closed but someone rightly said, church buildings might be closed, but the church still continues, although in a very different way.
During the time of church building closure, we have all adapted to a new way of worshipping God, we have all adopted a new pattern of prayer, we have explored new ways of deepening our faith and we have learned many new ways of reaching out to those in need in our communities.
We praise God that we have now been given permission to reopen our church buildings, where we can meet and worship together. But we have to keep in mind that we won’t return to normality overnight. We will still need to be very careful and maintain social distance and do everything possible to avoid the second wave of this virus being spread.
Opening our church building is the next step in our journey towards fellowshipping together. And so, with great delight I can announce that in consultation with the PCC, and keeping in view our circumstances, and safety of the members of our congregation we will be opening Scotby church only for private prayer from Sunday the 5thof July. Cotehill church will remain closed but we will review in August when it will be safe to open Cotehill church.
Scotby church will be open every Sunday morning from 10am till 12pm and Wednesday afternoon from 2pm till 4pm, from the 5th of July for private and personal prayer.
There will be a limited number of people allowed in the church building at any one time. keeping in mind the safety of those who would like to access the church building for private prayer, we have decided to block off the pews and the chancel, but the back of the church will be accessible.
There is a provision of sanitizer at the entrance of the church please do use it as you enter and leave the building. We would suggest that you bring your own bible or any literature that you would like to use during your time of personal prayer and please take it with you when you are finished. If you have access to a face mask and gloves, we would advise you to bring them with you and use as appropriate.
It has not been an easy time, but I want to thank you all for your courage, for your support to each other and for carrying on even when it was hard to see each other and your families.
Thank you once again for standing strong and standing together in this time of crisis. I have kept you all in my prayers and I wish you all health and safety and I look forward to seeing you very soon.
Prayers for July 2020
1 Pray for those who are finishing University this term and as they look for future employment, pray that God will carefully guide them.
2 Pray for those who are meeting in their social bubbles that they remain safe and at last feel connected once again.
3 Pray for God to fill His people with a passion to see people saved and to pray for the lost, praying for each one by name.
4 Pray for God to equip us for a mission in our street, community, across our nation or beyond.
5 Pray for Isaac and his family as he ministers to us, keeping them all safe during these unprecedented times.
6 Pray for the children at our local schools and preschool that they continue to adjust to their new learning environment.
7 Pray for those returning to work and that they can adjust to their new work environment.
8 Pray for a fresh boldness to share the Gospel within our sphere of influence and grant us the courage to live faithfully even in the midst of difficult times.
9 Pray for those who are unwell feeling anxious, depressed or just lonely that they may feel God’s peace at this time.
10 Pray for churches in our parishes, our Deanery and our Diocese as they prepare through their leaders to return to a ‘new normality’ in the coming months.
11 Pray for Croftfield and Henry Lonsdale residential care homes, their staff and their residents that they remain safe during this time.
12 Pray for our on-line church service today led by Steve Salkeld, that it will be a blessing and encouragement to all who watch it.
13 Pray for people who have recently lost loved ones that they may feel God’s loving arms surrounding them at this very difficult time.
14 Pray that the daily posts on our church website organised by Aimee Salkeld continue to be a blessing and encourage us all in our daily lives. We thank God for her dedication and commitment to this ministry.
15 Pray that the potential opening of our churches for personal prayer in the coming months will be a blessing to those who attend and that safety guidelines are adhered too.
16 Pray for those who have been working throughout this whole pandemic that they and their families continue to remain safe.
17 Pray for children finishing school today, especially those leaving and about to move into the next stage of their education.
18 Pray for our local pubs and their staff who are providing take away meals during this time.
19 Pray for our church service on-line today for people to join us and share in praise and worship to our Holy God and that they continue to be encouraged through this ministry.
20 Pray for Bishops James and Emma and all local Clergy as they prepare to minister to us in this new environment.
21 Pray for those who run our village shops, that they remain safe as they continue to provide a lifeline to the communities they serve. We thank God for them.
22 Pray for volunteer workers in our communities who collect much needed provisions, prescriptions and offer support for the many who still remain isolated in their homes.
23 Pray that as we praise and listen to God today, seek His face and hear from Him, that we are mindful of the Holy Sprit’s promptings in our lives.
24 Thank God that He alone can replace foolish worries with divine wisdom when we put our trust in Him.
25 Pray for a spiritual transformation and turning back to Jesus individually, locally, nationally and globally.
26 Pray for local and national on-line church services that through them, people continue to be spiritually sustained.
27 Pray for our Government and our political leaders that they can take us forward with Godly wisdom and discernment, reviving our economy while at the same time keeping us safe.
28 Pray for Valerie and Angela in their roles as pastoral and bereavement leaders, as they support those in need in our communities
29 Pray for those who are facing trials, that they may find our rest in our Holy and Creator God.
30 Thank God for the beauty of His creation which has sustained many during the uncertainty experienced during the pandemic lockdown.
31 Pray for a great move of God’s Word and Spirit to bring an awakening in this place and pray for a deeper hunger for God to shape us and change the Church.
Please keep in your prayers Maurice McIntosh who has been in the hospital for over 3 weeks now. Also keep praying for Mary, Andrew, Catherine and the family.
Please remember in your prayers the families of Joyce Dock and Barbara Parr, especially Karen and Kevin Parr for whom these last 12 months have been really difficult as Kevin has lost three very close members of the family, His father, his brother and now his mother.
A special prayer for the families of the deceased.
Lord Jesus, you are close to those that are broken-hearted and grieving in their soul. You rescue those that are crushed in spirit. We pray that you will draw near to the families of Joyce and Barbara especially Kevin and Karen, who are facing times of sadness and loss and draw each one ever closer into your precious arms of love and support. Amen
Schedule of Online Services July & August 2020
Date Lead Preach
5 July Isaac Isaac
12 Steve Steve
19 Isaac Isaac
26 Derek Derek
2 August Isaac Isaac
9 Isaac Isaac
16 Steve Steve
23 Isaac Isaac
30 Derek Derek
Trust – Genesis 22
Regardless of our position on organized religion, faith is a critical component in life. Without faith, it is nearly impossible to love others, achieve goals, and take on important and immensely complex realities believing that you can succeed and achieve. And the bible says it is impossible to please God without faith.
To have faith is to believe that (someone or something) deserves to be trusted. In one sense, faith in Christianity is often discussed in terms of believing God’s promises, trusting in his faithfulness, and relying on God’s character and faithfulness to act. Nelson’s Bible Dictionary defines faith as a belief in or confident attitude toward God, involving commitment to his will for one’s life. Nelson also says belief is to place one’s trust in God’s truth. A person who believes is one who takes God at his word and trusts in him for salvation.
Why am I telling you all this, you probably know it already, but I was reminded of this as I reflected on the current situation we are facing. And I was reminded of the story of Isaac’s sacrifice which is written in the 22ndchapter of Genesis in the bible.
The story begins with these words sometime later, God tested Abraham and we know the rest of the story where God asks Abraham to sacrifice his only son Isaac.
As they go on the journey towards this mountain, In verse 7 Isaac asks his father, “we have the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for the burnt offering”. I think if I was there, I would have been in tears and would have said, you are the sacrifice, God wants me to offer you as a sacrifice.
And even grumbled that God had given me only one son and now he wants you back. But not Abraham. He simply says, “God will provide.” Isn’t it amazing that Abraham shows his full and complete trust in the Lord even when there isn’t anything in sight.
What do you do or say when you face problems in our lives, when marriages are in difficulty, when finances go pear shaped, when children don’t do what they are meant to do, when we face difficult medical procedures. What do we do when we face a huge problem as this pandemic.
Do we grumble? Do we lose faith or are we able to say like Abraham did, the Lord will provide. The Lord will provide the right solution, the Lord will provide protection, the Lord will provide the right treatment and vaccination in time.
Friends no matter what happens in the world or around us, let us keep faith that the Lord will provide, the Lord will make a way, the Lord is victorious and so are we in Him and with Him.