Church news - April 8

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Last Sunday, Pastor Nathan began a study of the letters in Revelation.

He emphasised that our approach would be balanced – neither seriously in-depth or sensationalised.

How do you know if Revelation is for you?

Nathan listed the following questions to help you decide. Do you face any kind of opposition for living a Christian life?

Do you experience any discouragement in trying to persevere in being a Christian (ie an internal struggle)?

Do you find yourself fearful because of the way things seem to be going in the world?

Do you feel yourself tempted to simply give up and not care any more?

If you answered yes to any or all of the above – keep reading!

Nathan told us that Revelation was written to strengthen the church in the midst of opposition and struggle.

It reveals invisible forces at work behind the visible reality, and demonstrates God’s sovereignty over everything.

It is meant to help us, bless us and comfort us.

Nathan challenged us to read the book in its entirety, and told us that as we continue our study we will be challenged, convicted and encouraged by the “letter to Stonehaven” (even though we aren’t mentioned by name).

Exciting stuff!

The Easter holidays have finally arrived bringing with it typical holiday weather so really we have had no excuse not to sit down and read Revelation and I for one, am hoping that by the time you read this, I will have done so.

Most of our usual activities are on holiday but we will still be at Carronhill on Sunday morning.

You are very welcome to join us. See our Facebook page and website for details.

Dunnottar linked with Souch Churches

On the Second Sunday of Easter Reverend Rosslyn Duncan welcomed all to worship.

The readings were from John’s gospel and the book of Acts. Reflecting on Christ’s appearance to His disciples Rosslyn spoke of that peace which He bestowed on them with the phrase ‘Peace be with you’.

Unlike any other individual our Lord truly did know how His disciples were feeling and for us His disciples today He knows our thoughts and feelings, our failings and our achievements, and throughout everything He loves us and gives us that reassurance so we feel peace in His presence.

As Rosslyn preached on the reading from the book of Acts we saw how those frightened men who had previously locked themselves away in the Upper Room had been transformed from disciples into apostles – men sent out to courageously proclaim the good news – the good news that the crucified Jesus was now Christ the Risen Saviour.

The lesson for us today is that it is not enough just to acknowledge the peace of God in our lives but we must also witness to it as we live hour by hour in God’s world.

Worship was concluded with the congregation singing Frances Crosby’s great hymn of faith ‘Blessed Assurance Jesus is mine’.

This Sunday, morning worship at Dunnottar, 10.30am,the Reverend Rosslyn Duncan. All welcome. Saturday, April 16, 10am-12noon, spring coffee morning, South Church Hall. Tickets £2.50(adults); £1.00(children)

News from St James

Members of the ‘Book Browse’ team, guided by David and Diane Fleming, had several busy days this week – first collecting and sorting the thousands of volumes into categories and alphabetical order, then setting up the sale in our church hall.

Despite – maybe because of – other activities in the town, not only did the sale raise over £400 for church funds, but there were more ‘footfalls’ in the hall than ever before. Possibly this is because the Book Browse has become a regular feature and many of our customers are people who have visited before.

On Sunday we celebrated the Annunciation – the occasion when the Angel Gabriel visited Mary and told her she was to become the mother of Christ.

The Gospel Reading was from Luke, Chapter 1, verses 26-38. The 9am service was conducted by Dr Peter Smart, who also led the worship at 10.30. Anne, our Lay Reader, preached and led the intercessions.

Anne’s theme was based on the role of three women in the Bible who had been chosen by God for a special purpose, who had followed God’s call and were obedient to Him, and who prophesied – their prophesies are preserved for future generations.

The first was Miriam, elder sister of Moses (he of the bulrushes story), whose actions saved the life of the man who was to become the greatest prophet ever known in Israel and whose prophecy included the words of the song at the crossing of the Red Sea/Sea of Reeds ‘Sing to the Lord for he has triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider he has thrown into the sea’.

Secondly was Hannah – barren until her middle age, who promised if she bore a son she would dedicate him to God.

In due course she bore a son – Samuel – who became the King-maker in Israel, and who, herself, prophesied in words that strongly resemble the Magnificat – the song of Mary.

As a teenager, not married, Mary was chosen by God to be the mother of his Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ.

Mary accepted her role, and she herself prophesied in the words of the Magnificat – ‘My soul magnifies the Lord…’

In this song she prophesied: God is Holy and He is merciful. God is the God of history and of social justice and thirdly, this is the same God who spoke to the ancestors of Mary, the descendants of Abraham, and will continue to speak to the new Israel – to us – the inheritors of the promise.

Anne reminded the congregation that the last hymn this morning would be ‘Tell out my soul, the greatness of the Lord’ – based on this moving statement of faith from the teenage mother-to-be whose child would change the world.

Anne concluded her address by inviting the congregation to join in the special prayer of Mary: Hail Mary, full of grace. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of our death. Amen.