Sunday 16 May 2021

Today (Thursday) is Ascension Day and we’ll be looking at what we can learn from the story of the Ascension in our worship on Sunday. In the words of TS Elliot, ‘What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.’


We’re in Christian Aid Week. Our service on Sunday past had a Christian Aid focus and you can watch it along with a recording of the Christian Aid Tea-time Prayer on the church website www.bowdenandmelrosechurch.org  on Instagram and the church Facebook page.  You can donate to Christian Aid – https://www.christianaid.org.uk/get-involved-locally/scotland


Sunday worship

On Sunday we meet for worship at 9.30am in Bowden Kirk and 11.00am in Melrose Church. Numbers in the buildings are limited and you may still prefer to keep safe at home. Please note – the regulations have changed slightly. There is still the requirement for distancing, face masks, hand sanitising, trace and protect, no singing etc.. We are now able to use the balcony in Bowden Kirk which accommodates 5 people with up to 20 downstairs. In Melrose we have 38 seating areas. (We can accommodate 38 households.) The attendance cap of 50 has been removed. You can join us live at 11.00am on Sundays on both Facebook and our website www.bowdenandmelrosechurch.org or watch the recording thereafter. A Sunday Worship podcast will be posted on the website, Facebook and Instagram at 6.00pm on Saturday evening. You can also listen by phoning  01896 808551.


Television and Radio

There are other worship opportunities on Sunday. On BBC 1 at 11.15pm Reflections at the Quay will be presented by the Rev Mandy Ralph of Annbank Parish Church, Ayr and Father David Wallace, Our Lady of Lourdes, Cardonald, on the theme of unity. Music is by Celtic Worship. Songs of Praise is at 1.15pm. The Service is on BBC Scotland at 12noon when Rev Philip Blackledge will lead an Episcopal service of worship from Holy Trinity Church in Melrose. New Every Sunday is at 7.30am on Radio Scotland and Sunday Worship at 8.10am on Radio 4. Both will be available afterwards on BBC Sounds.


General Assembly

The Church of Scotland General Assembly for 2021 will be held online for a second year. It will open on Saturday 22 May with commissioners and other attendees joining together remotely from across Scotland and around the world. I am a commissioner this year and will be presenting the Faith Nurture Forum Report from the General Assembly Hall on Tuesday 25 May from 1.00pm. The report and my speech are on the Church of Scotland website along with the other reports and information about the Assembly. https://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/about-us/general-assembly


Prayer

This Sunday, Christians across the country – and further afield – will once again join together in prayer and reflection at 7pm in response to the pandemic.


God and Father
Of our Lord Jesus Christ,
We thank You for all that we have received from Your Hand.
We thank You for the life You have given to us
And Your presence with us in all we face.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.


God and Father
Of our Lord Jesus Christ,
We thank You for all that we have received from Your Son.
We thank You that He has prayed for us
And that He continues to uphold us in all we face.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.


God and Father
Of our Lord Jesus Christ,
We thank You that You watch over us and protect us.
Watch over us as we continue the journey we have taken in past months
And protect us in days to come.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.


God and Father
Of our Lord Jesus Christ,
We thank You that You watch over and protect this world.
Watch over us as we give thanks for the gift of Creation
And enable us to better care for the world You have entrusted to us.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.


God and Father
Of our Lord Jesus Christ,
We thank You that Your Son is Risen and Ascended.
We join with the community of all Your people
And anticipate the outpouring of Your Holy Spirit.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.


God and Father
Of our Lord Jesus Christ,
We thank You that Your Risen and Ascended Son prays for us once more.
We join with all Your people in every place
And ask that You might renew us by Your Holy Spirit.
Lord, in Your mercy,
Hear our prayer.


Offering Despite the restrictions of these days the work of the church goes on. Thank you for your ongoing support. Many of our members now make their offering by standing order and we would encourage you to do so! Please contact Helen to set this up – bowden.melrosepc@btinternet.com Alternatively you can send or deliver your offering to the church, or you can make an online offering to Bowden and Melrose Church via the Church of Scotland website. https://cos.churchofscotland.org.uk/donate/?cong=040271