The Scottish Church Leaders Forum have issued this call to prayer on Palm Sunday:
As we continue to live through this time of trial, we sense an ever renewed Call to Prayer. We are not alone in hearing this call. Rather, it is a Call being heard and responded to across the nations of our island and across the nations of our world. This being so, we invite you to pray in solidarity with others at 7.00pm on Sunday 6 April, which is Palm Sunday. We offer a prayer at this time:
Living God, for the precious gift of life that you have given to us,
We give you thanks.
For the enduring presence of your love in this world,
We give you thanks.
For the knowledge that you are with us at the close of the day,
We give you thanks.
On this day, we hear the Gospel words that speak of hope,
We hear the cry: Hosanna!
We hear the Gospel words that speak of promise,
We hear the cry: Blessed is the One who comes in the name of the Lord!
On this day, we journey in hope as we trust in your promise.
Lord, as we journey into the Holy Week to come,
We are conscious that we share in the life of the world.
We are conscious of the presence of those who are near to us,
And of those from whom we are apart.
Whether near, or far, embrace us all in your love.
Lord, we are conscious of others,
Whose life and work is woven into the fabric of our society,
And upon whom we now depend.
We pray for them:
For delivery drivers and posties,
For bin men and cleaners,
For police officers and care workers,
Protect them and keep them safe.
For nurses and doctors,
For scientists and surgeons,
For midwives and ambulance drivers,
Protect them and watch over them.
For those who govern on our behalf,
For those who make decisions that impact upon us all,
For all who shape our common life,
Protect them and increase their wisdom and understanding.
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.
And grant us faith to journey into the week to come,
Assured of the presence of the crucified and risen Lord,
Jesus Christ. Amen.
Eddie Sykes writes:
It is with sadness that I share the news that David Slater passed away peacefully at the Victoria Hospital, Kirkcaldy last night (26 March 2020).
We give thanks to God for David, and pray for his family (daughters Karen and Janet, and families) and friends at this time. Funeral arrangements will be limited. There will, however, be a celebration of David’s life later in the year.
I also warmly encourage you to continue to remember Helen Marks and family as they continue to mourn Gordon’s passing. His funeral took place on Wednesday. There will also be a memorial service for Gordon later in the year.
For all the saints who from their labours rest, we give you thanks , O Lord.
O Christ the Morning Star, when the night of this world is past bring us to the promised light of life, opening into everlasting day. (Venerable Bede)
Please share this news with those in the church whom you know who are not on the internet.
Grace and Peace, God bless, Eddie
The linked notice from the College of Bishops on how to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, covers weddings, funerals, baptisms and access to church buildings. While this won’t affect most people directly, it gives a pointer as to the constraints under which Kenny and other clergy will be operating. Pray for them!
Some of you may have responded to the Pope’s call to all Christians to pray The Lord’s Prayer together on Wednesday this week. The Church Leaders Forum in Scotland encouraged us to join in the Churches Together call to prayer last Sunday evening, including lighting a candle and displaying it in a window for all to see. This Churches Together call to prayer is now being extended to this coming Sunday evening (29 March) at the same time of 7.00pm.
To all at St Margaret’s, sent by Michael at 0930 today – the time we would normally meet for worship – a reflection from our friend Liz Crumlish.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil; for you are with me; your rod and your staff — they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord my whole life long.
The God who walks alongside us
in the darkness
is the same God
who anoints our head with oil
The God present with us
in the valley
prepares a table
and fills our cup to overflowing
The God who was before us
and is with us
all the days of life
As we mourn our familiar
rhythms of worship
may we embrace the opportunity
to experience something new
and in our stripped back liturgy
may we encounter the presence of God
in new and vibrant ways
May we know ourselves pursued
by the God
who meets us in our living rooms
or in our kitchens
or in the places we set aside for prayer
bringing comfort in our fear
hope in our despair
and calm in all our striving
until we know
of the shepherd
whose name is Love.