AINSDALE METHODIST CHURCH NOTICES
Sunday 7th February 2021
Service time at Ainsdale Methodist Church.
All services at Church suspended until further notice.
Circuit Online Service this week 11am
Rachel Bray, Reader & Local Missional Leader at PPW leads this weeks service and the Preacher is Shirley Potts, Local Preacher, Leyland Road.
Prayer for Stillness
Faithful and present God, you are not blind to the storms that rage in this world, the illness that threatens. Some are visible to the eye, but others are hidden in our heart. Lord, bring your refuge and healing strength. Make me still in your safety.
When what seems permanent begins to crumble, when devastation ravages the earth, when powers that be claim your authority – let us remember the joy you have set before us. Lord, help us to let go of fear and doubt. Make us still in your waters of gladness.
God, Creator of time, we hurry from task to task, from crisis to crisis, carrying the weight of the world. Or in this season of lockdown, we let time pass without meaning. But the world is yours, and everything in it. Let us lay down both what keeps us too busy to be still and stillness that is void before you so that we may lift our eyes to your glory. Lord, we come into your presence. Make us still in you. Amen.
Lectionary Readings – Sunday 7th February 2021
Isaiah 40.21-31; Psalm 147.1-11,20c; 1 Corinthians 9.16-23; Mark 1.29-39
Take Time Meditations – Lent Series
Taketime meditations use your imagination to provide a calm, comfortable space. This six part series directs you in time and thought through the events of Holy Week leading up to and including Jesus’ crucifixion.
The Lent series will be held on Monday’s 4.00pm or Thursday’s 4.45pm for 60 minutes via Zoom, from Thursday 18th February and Monday 22nd February for 6 weeks.
Zoom details to follow. If you want any more information at this time please contact Sally Eyes on 07743 660155 or on sally.eyes@southportmethodist.
Lent Midweek Circuit Service
During Lent we will be holding a 30 minute midweek service via Zoom which will be held every Wednesday morning starting on Ash Wednesday. More details to follow next week.
FireFest Weekend – 12th-14th February 2021
Given the current restrictions, this years FireFest event will be held on line next weekend with the theme “Real Love”, hosted from Wakefield. Attached is a copy of the programme and below are the various links to access the event and to find out more.
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.
Facebook Event Page: https://www.facebook.
Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/
Workshop Registration Page: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/
FireFest was formally named the Southport Holiness Convention and Summer Fire.
Chaplain Vacancy – Connell Court
Heather Draper retires this month as the Chaplain at Connell Court. Applications for her replacement are sought and the deadline is 7th February. The details of the vacancy can be found via the following link – https://findajob.dwp.gov.uk/
The Bible Study Group continues to meet every Tuesday at 10.30am via Zoom. Each study is stand alone, so it does not matter if you miss a week. This week we will look at the Exodus sections from the the Bible Story book. You can order the book from the likes of Amazon (https://www.amazon.co.uk/
You can join the Bible Study via the internet
Coffee after Church 11.45am every Sunday
Join the congregations of Ainsdale & Liverpool Road Methodist Churches for a virtual coffee after the online service 11.45am
February Events from the North West & Mann Learning Network Region of the Methodist Church
The Learning Team in the region have a number of online events during February which may be of interest and can be accessed via the following link – https://methodist-news.org.uk/
If you have any items you want including in the notices for the next week, please email Patrick know by Wednesday 3rd February on 07813 211501 or patrick.evans@methodist.
Speaking with people these last few weeks, I have been struck by how we are all struggling in different ways with lockdown.
For some there is the awful social isolation exacerbated with a lack of (normal) routine. The grief like loss of not being able to see family and friends. On TV there have been interviews with psychologists about how it can be helpful to keep a rhythm to our lives, such as waking at a set time, taking regular exercise and even just getting up and moving about for a few minutes every hour.
For others the struggle has been the total opposite, of absolute overload, with “working from home” (or perhaps better expressed as “living at work” where the bedroom doubles as an office!). This is then compounded with home schooling in-between work meetings, and having to prepare 21 meals a week for the family with no respite offered in the week from lunches at school or in the workplace. And so often work has been turned on its head, with the challenge of having to learn new skills and new ways of doing and delivering work in a non contact/meeting environment, and covering for colleagues who have been drafted into other activities due to the pandemic. For those in the health service there has been the excessively long shifts, with minimal breaks for recovery and the agony of witnessing loss like never before.
These extremes bring their own very real challenges; both are really tough. There is wonderful hope on the horizon through the vaccine, although I wonder how the easing of lockdown will be met. For some it will be getting out, meeting people again and having a diary busy with activity. For others there will be the need for the exact opposite, for rest and refuelling, ensuring they are not overwhelmed by the pressures of having to continue to excessively perform and deliver as they have for the last year.
Mark’s gospel is a fast paced narrative where it appears there isn’t a moment to lose, with phrases, even in the first chapter such as “As soon as they left the synagogue…”, or “That evening after sunset…”. The action never stops.
In our reading this week, Mark Ch 1 vs 29-39, Jesus has had a busy day teaching in the synagogue, before heading to the home of Simon and Andrew in the afternoon where he cares for Simon’s mother in law, before in the evening the people of the whole town brought people to Jesus for healing well into the night. The following day they headed off into the nearby villages and then throughout Galilee. With poor healthcare and all the needs of people it must have felt something like a pandemic to Jesus.
In the middle of this busyness though, there is a really important moment of stillness.
Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. (Mark Ch 1 vs 35)
As I reflect at this time I think that perhaps of all of this weeks eleven verses of busyness, of the disciples looking for Jesus and saying “Everyone is looking for you!”, and of all the teaching and healing, that it is the verse above that is most important.
Jesus carved out a time for himself. An opportunity to reflect in the stillness of the night, away from the house and people. A time to reflect on what had been and to reorientate himself on what he discerned was most most important in the day and time ahead. I wonder if without this space and stillness he would have decided to go to the villages and throughout Galilee, or without that time of prayer he would have been mentally ready for what that day and that part of his ministry would bring. This verse if a gift to us within the busyness of the passage. May it be a gift to us in whatever are our struggles in lockdown.
With Sunday approaching I am reminding us of the services available via the Methodist Church online, as well as some others on TV & Radio. Please see below.
Online Circuit Service – Sunday 11am
The link to our services is http://southportmethodist.
Listen via the phone – You can listen to a recording of our weekly online Circuit Service via your telephone by calling 01704 335755. Calls will be charged as a local rate call via landlines, although costs will vary for mobile users. Services are typically up to 50 minutes long. You can listen to the service from 11am each Sunday, up until the following Sunday.
Watch via DVD or listen via CD – If you would like a DVD or CD of our weekly service please contact Patrick on 07813 211501. These are free of charge.
Get involved – How can I get involved?…If in future weeks you would be able to record yourself reading the bible, sharing some testimony, singing or playing music etc, or writing a prayer or sharing a photo, or have any other ideas, please let Patrick know on 07813 211501 or at patrick.evans@methodist.
Other Worship Resources – Attached is a copy of this weeks Worship From Home service sheet.
Other worship resources and on line services from the Methodist Church can be found at https://www.methodist.org.
Dial-a-Prayer (it’s free!)
FREE phone lines for prayers, reflections and news from the Methodist Church
Listen to a prayer: 0808 281 2514 (updated every Thursday).
Listen to a pastoral message from the President and Vice
President: 0808 281 2695 (updated every Monday).
Listen to the Methodist Podcast: 0808 281 2478 (updated on first and third Thursday of the month)
Spiritual sustenance when in isolation
For those online the following link (https://www.methodist.org.uk/
BBC Local Radio (incl Radio Merseyside)
At 8.00 am this Sunday, all 39 BBC local radio stations will be joining together for worship.
BBC Radio 4
Sunday 8.10am – Sunday Worship – Chinese New Year
Marking Chinese New Year and what is likely to be the largest UK immigration from outside Europe since Windrush, from Hong Kong. Chinese Christians have been worshiping in the UK for at least 70 years. Today the Chinese Christian community flourishes with congregations preaching in English, Mandarin and Cantonese in most major towns and cities across the country. As Chinese New Year approaches Rev Henry Lu of Chinese Overseas Christian Mission leads today’s Sunday Worship, exploring the themes of hospitality and welcome, particularly in anticipation of the many immigrants expected to arrive in the UK from Hong Kong in the coming months. Preacher: Rev Connie Yu.
Sunday 1.15pm – Songs of Praise – Gospel Singer of the Year – Final
Mark De-Lisser hosts the final of our Gospel Singer of the Year competition. Three talented finalists sing to win the title at the stunning Gorton Monastery in Manchester. Making the all-important decision are the judges: pop and West End musicals star Alexandra Burke, vocal coach and gospel expert David Grant and singing legend Heather Small. There’s also a guest performance from Shaun Escoffery, singing his single River.