Monthly Archives: December 2015

Happy New Year! Be present; embrace; relinquish
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Three very simple things I’ve been thinking about today, which if we let them search our hearts may speak deeply to us. I guess these apply as much to the Church as a whole as to us as individuals. Be present in the present First, in the year ahead, may we be present in the present. So often we are caught up in so many distractions - in memories and dreams, in the sheer busy-ness of life -  that we are not present to life, to other people, or

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Generous giving at Christmas services
Highland Homeless Trust

UPDATE: Great news! People gathering to worship at Hilton over the Christmas services have given enough money to construct a home for a family in Nepal, as well as proving accomodation for homeless people in Inverness through the Direct Access Project. A big thank you to everyone who gave so generously. The total given was £1023.25. Offerings at the Watchnight Service (Thursday 24th at 11.15pm) and the Christmas Day Service (Friday 25th at 10.30am

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This morning’s praise team
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Women of action, men of action
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Fiona Waite and Laura Keene amused and challenged us this morning with a sketch in which two folk, having been to church and heard a sermon on today’s passage, Mark 1 :1-20 discussed its implications for us today. Their conclusion? ‘God came among us to show us what he is like, to challenge us to be men and women of action.’

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BEING the good news
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Eilidh led a game of charades at the service this morning in which children (and older folk) attempted to mime ways of communicating which we had to guess. Among others there was writing a letter, texting, carrier pigeon, and (hardest to guess, this!) sending a message in a bottle.   Eilidh then spoke about the challenge, not simply to communicate the good news about Jesus, but to BE the good news, showing in our lives the fruits of God’s

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The candles are all lit; the king has come; what next? A report of Duncan’s sermon this morning
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What next? A challenge to know ourself beloved, and live out of our sense of belovedness. A man in a hurry To Duncan, the author of Mark’s gospel (the sermon today was on Mark 1:1-20) was a man in a hurry. Not for him a leisurely introduction such as we have in Matthew and Luke’s gospels, with Jesus’s family tree, and the story of his birth and John the Baptist’s birth. But Mark, keen to take us to the heart of the good news Jesus brought,

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The time is NOW! Bible readings for tomorrow
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Here’s the readings from the Narrative Lectionary for tomorrow.  We’re moving on from Christmas, and  thinking about the start of Jesus’  ministry, and beginning the long journey to Easter.  But, writing in today’s The Times, Lucy Winkett, Rector of St James’s, Piccadilly reminds us that in the Church Calendar, the Christmas season continued until Epiphany, on the 6th of January, and that for these twelve days we can legitimately wish

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At Christmas, remember those who suffer
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Just in Tesco earlier. Exuberant carols on Classic fm as I drove there. Families shopping, Santa hats, staff piling up the crackers to attract last-minute sales. Jolly music. Father God, we remember those for whom today is an agony, made only more intense by the spirit of joy and light-heartedness. Father, be with those who today have lost a dear one; with those sunk in anxiety and depression; with lonely people mourning past joys; those struggling

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Christ, candlelighter
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Posting that picture earlier of the four advent candles lit, and the one remaining unlit made me wonder if some of us feel today that whereas the faith of our friends seems to burn brightly, in our case the flame has never been lit, or has burned low, or has been extinguished by doubt, pain, guilt, pressure. May we realise that in love and not in judgement Christ walks among the candles and lights or re-kindles them, one by one, with the flame of

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You did it for me: Christ on the city street
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Posting about homelessness reminded me of this moving poem in the Street Pastors recent prayer letter. It was written by Stephen Webster who in his book on the story of ‘Glasgow Street Outreach’ tells us that at a time when he was almost giving up “This experience (near Buchanan Street) showed me more than anything that God’s heart would be revealed to me on the city streets and it gave me the energy to carry on, despite the apparent lack

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