Dunnottar and South Churches
Reverend Rosslyn Duncan welcomed all the church on Sunday. The sermon focused on The Baptism of the Lord. We were guided to consider the wonder of the human voice. The voice of a parent can show love when soft and gentle and when loudly uttering a warning or even a rebuke. God speaks to us in many ways, showing power and peace. He reveals all he can do yet is merciful. We can come to him even after wrong doing and he will forgive us.
We recognise that Jesus did not need to be baptised, there were no sins to cleanse, no new beginnings to be made. Jesus knew that he had to be baptised because it was what the Lord wanted. Thursday, January 16 - Fellowship coffee at St Bridget’s, 10-11.30am; Craft Group at the South Church in the Conservatory 2-4pm; South Congregational Board 7.30pm in the Conservatory.
Please send any intimations for both congregations to Pat at the office by Thursday 9am (01569) 760930 at Secretary.firstname.lastname@example.org
Please copy all intimations for both congregations to the Minister. Rosslyn may be contacted on 01569 762166 or 07899878427 or by email on email@example.com
Hospital and residential home visiting: please advise the minister or any elder of any patient who would welcome such a visit.
Last Sunday our service was led by Pastor Nathan Young.
Continuing our study of 1 John we looked at Chapter 5 verses 1 to 5. Nathan began by reminding us of when we were learning to read, or learning our times-tables that we learned by rote, repeating something over and over again so that we remembered, and still remember, it. John is reminding us over and over again of the basics because of the need for them to be imprinted on our conscience. Simply; belief in Jesus Christ changes everything. In verses 1 to 5 John goes over some of the results of that belief.
Belief gives you a new life. (Belief means believing that Jesus is who he says He is.) There are no ifs or buts, you either believe or you dont. Not naively or in blind faith but by what has been revealed in the Bible. Again, you either accept the bible as truth or you dont. Belief is not magical or mystical;it is accepting God for who He is.
News from St James
and St Philips
As anticipated, the children’s performance of Babushka was delightful - and insightful. Two of our Sunday Club boys took the role of narrators, and their younger sister played the part of the oh-so-busy grandmother - Babushka. Later, three adult members were given ‘walk-on’ parts as the Wise men from the East.
hrough the forested area of Eastern Europe en route for the Holy Land, and in the course of their journey visited the village where Babushka was busy dusting and cleaning, cooking and tidying up. They invited her to go with them to see the newborn King - but she was too busy, and said she would come in the next couple of days when she had finished her tasks. But, of course, when she got there, the Baby Jesus and his parents, Joseph and Mary, had gone.
They had fled into Egypt to avoid Herod’s murderous wrath. The meaning of this parable was not lost on the congregation - and we were asked how often are we too busy to listen to God’s message. The playlet was the first of our ‘Epiphany’ productions, and we shall continue to celebrate the revealing of Christ during the next six weeks up until the beginning of Lent.
In the afternoon, the Eucharist was celebrated at St Philip’s, conducted by our rector, the Rev Maggie Jackson, and Arma preached on the gospel reading for the day - the Baptism of Christ - another epiphany, or revealing.
She compared the Baptism of Christ to the process of Enhanced Disclosure that anyone applying for a job that involves children or vulnerabe adults must go through. Jesus’s baptism provided the scene of His enhanced disclosure - the disclosure that he was indeed God’s son.
Focus on Fetteresso
It was lovely to begin our morning service, once again, with a baptism, welcoming another new life into the church and hearing parents declare their own faith and their resolve to bring their precious child up in the Christian way of life.
It was interesting then, in that context, that in both our morning and evening services our minister, Fyfe Blair, spoke about ways in which we can and should live a Christian life, from two different perspectives.
Fyfe’s morning message was based on a passage from Paul’s first letter to Timothy, in which Paul spells out from his own experience how to live the Christian life. In this passage Paul acknowledges his own background as ‘a sinner, a persecutor and a violent man’. At that time he believed himself to be on God’s side, but on the road to Damascus God showed him that his belief was wrong, changed his life and filled him with grace.
The message in the evening service was from the first book of John – who was also the gospel writer. The context was different, being a letter written by a pastor to his young church, but the message broadly similar – that what we believe, proclaim, and bear witness to changes and transforms our lives. At a time of confusion about their faith and what was true versus what was falsehood or myth, John writes to his people and describes what he and the other disciples saw, heard and touched when Jesus was alive – he emphasises that Jesus was fully human.
Fundamentally he declares that the measure of a Christian life is that if we believe Jesus took on flesh and then died for our sin, it will transform our ethical, moral and daily lives and enable us to walk in the light. We must confess our sin, recognise our guilt and shame, but know that through Jesus we are forgiven – because He took our sin on Himself and set us free to walk in the light.