Video Services

In light of the current health crisis it is important that we can continue to worship even when separated. We held our first video service on Mothering Sunday and intend to keep providing live broadcasts on Facebook and this website.
9th July 2023
9th July – Reflection

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25th June 2023
Morning Worship – 25th June

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11th June 2023
“Do justly, love mercy, walk humbly with God”

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28th May 2023
Sunday 28th May

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14th May 2023
Sunday 14th May – Up…

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23rd April 2023
Morning Worship – 23/04

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26th March 2023
Morning Worship – March 2023

Welcome and Introduction We are still on our journey through the season of Lent. The time when Jesus was in the wilderness.  Wilderness features in both our readings – desolate and lifeless places.  Through these readings we are reminded of the promise of life out of death.   Opening Prayer There will come a time When all around us will be gone – Blown away like dust... But there will never come a time When the wind-breath of God ceases to blow, When the Spirit sleeps, when love lies lifeless.   Let us worship God, Who holds everything fast And breathes life into life. Amen   Reading – Ezekiel 37.1-14 37The hand of the Lord came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 2He led me all round them; there were very many lying in the valley, and they were very dry. 3He said to me, ‘Mortal, can these bones live?’ I answered, ‘O Lord God, you know.’ 4Then he said to me, ‘Prophesy to these bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. 5Thus says the Lord God to these bones: I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. 6I will lay sinews on you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live; and you shall know that I am the Lord.’ 7 So I prophesied as I had been commanded; and as I prophesied, suddenly there was a noise, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. 8I looked, and there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them; but there was no breath in them. 9Then he said to me, ‘Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say to the breath: Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.’10I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude. 11 Then he said to me, ‘Mortal, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, “Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are cut off completely.” 12Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: I am going to open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people; and I will bring you back to the land of Israel.13And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and bring you up from your graves, O my people. 14I will put my spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you on your own soil; then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken and will act, says the Lord   Reading – John 11.1-45 11Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair; her brother Lazarus was ill. 3So the sisters sent a message to Jesus, ‘Lord, he whom you love is ill.’ 4But when Jesus heard it, he said, ‘This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God’s glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.’ 5Accordingly, though Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, 6after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was. 7 Then after this he said to the disciples, ‘Let us go to Judea again.’ 8The disciples said to him, ‘Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?’ 9Jesus answered, ‘Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. 10But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them.’ 11After saying this, he told them, ‘Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to awaken him.’ 12The disciples said to him, ‘Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right.’ 13Jesus, however, had been speaking about his death, but they thought that he was referring merely to sleep. 14Then Jesus told them plainly, ‘Lazarus is dead. 15For your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.’ 16Thomas, who was called the Twin, said to his fellow-disciples, ‘Let us also go, that we may die with him.’ 17 When Jesus arrived, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. 18Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, some two miles away, 19and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them about their brother. 20When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary stayed at home.21Martha said to Jesus, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. 22But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him.’ 23Jesus said to her, ‘Your brother will rise again.’24Martha said to him, ‘I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.’ 25Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, 26and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?’ 27She said to him, ‘Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah,the Son of God, the one coming into the world.’ 28 When she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary, and told her privately, ‘The Teacher is here and is calling for you.’ 29And when she heard it, she got up quickly and went to him. 30Now Jesus had not yet come to the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. 31The Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary get up quickly and go out. They followed her because they thought that she was going to the tomb to weep there. 32When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.’33When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. 34He said, ‘Where have you laid him?’ They said to him, ‘Lord, come and see.’35Jesus began to weep. 36So the Jews said, ‘See how he loved him!’37But some of them said, ‘Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?’ 38 Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. 39Jesus said, ‘Take away the stone.’ Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, ‘Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead for four days.’ 40Jesus said to her, ‘Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?’41So they took away the stone. And Jesus looked upwards and said, ‘Father, I thank you for having heard me. 42I knew that you always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may believe that you sent me.’ 43When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out!’ 44The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, ‘Unbind him, and let him go.’ 45 Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him.   Reflection Our Lenten journey now brings us to the wilderness, the desolation and the dry bones of Ezekiel 37:1-14 and wilderness like desolation and grief of Martha and Mary at the tomb of their brother Lazarus (John 11.1-45). Ezekiel sees the transforming breath of God bringing life into the dry bones within the barren wilderness, and the promise of restoration of the people of Israel.  Ezekiel’s repeated use of the word breath throughout the passage is pointing to the message that God’s spirit is the key. With his spirit, anything is possible but without it, we are just flesh and bone. We are dead and we can achieve nothing.  But with God’s spirit it we have life – what Jesus called fullness of life. And this is a message to all of us.  We may at times feel desolate.  We may feel that we have been deserted but the answer is God’s spirit.  We need to allow ourselves to be filled with God’s spirit and we will have life to the full. In the reading from the Gospel of John, although the story climaxes with the raising of Lazarus, it is also the story of his sisters, Martha and Mary, and their wilderness like experience of grief and desolation.  Jesus does not immediately come when they call, and they both tell him that their brother would be alive if he had not delayed.  So it is a story of lament, loss and blame initially.  But Jesus says to Martha “I am the resurrection and the life”, revealing the transforming power of faith in Christ.  Martha responds with an affirmation of her faith.  It is ultimately a story of coming face to face with and acceptance of the nature of Jesus who brings transformation.  Jesus turns Martha’s, and her sister’s, sadness into joy. The message John conveys is that like Martha, coming face to face with and accepting the nature of Jesus brings transformation.  Easter will be with us in two-week’s time, bringing a reassurance that death is not the end of our story.  Hope and faith transform us. Whilst the two readings describe forms of wilderness and desolation, both point to the same message that through faith and accepting the spirit within us, there is the promise of life out of death.   Prayer of confession Lord, forgive us when we don’t always trust you,  when we don’t always trust that you know best. Forgive us when we think our timing is better than yours, when we think that we know best. Forgive us when we demand things from you, when we want everything now. Forgive us when we turn away from you, when we don’t understand why things have gone wrong, when we feel let down and hurt, thinking that you have rejected us and abandoned us. For you never reject or abandon us. Forgive us, Lord, and give us renewed hope. Amen. Prayer of assurance of forgiveness Loving God, who frees us from our sins. We bow our heads and accept your loving forgiveness. Amen.   Affirmation of Faith When we get things wrong, we place our trust in you, Lord. When we feel lost and alone, we place our trust in you, Lord. When we are scared and hurting, we place our trust in you, Lord. When we face the unknown, we place our trust in you, Lord, relying on your endless love. Amen.   The Lord’s Prayer: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours. Now and for ever.   Amen Closing prayer:   Lord, be with us on our journey of life. As we travel with you in the coming days, may we share your love and compassion with those we meet whose path is hard. Transform us, and transform them, with your life-giving love. Amen.   Grace: May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, And the love of God, And the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all, now and evermore.  Amen.     

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12th March 2023
Sunday 12th March – How we move on

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