Christ, as a light
illumine and guide me.
Christ, as a shield
Christ under me;
Christ over me;
Christ beside me
on my left and my right.
This day be within and without me,
lowly and meek, yet all-powerful.
Be in the heart of each to whom I speak;
in the mouth of each who speaks unto me.
This day be within and without me,
Lowly and meek, yet all-powerful.
Christ as a light;
Christ as a shield;
Christ beside me
On my left and my right.
The prayer of St Patrick
A prayer from the Northumbria Community
‘The Lord merely spoke, and the heavens were created.
He breathed the word, and all the stars were born.
He assigned the sea its boundaries
and locked the oceans in vast reservoirs.
Let the whole world fear the Lord,
and let everyone stand in awe of Him.
For when He spoke, the world began!
It appeared at His command.’
Psalm 33.6-9 New Living Translation
I once read the above translation of Psalm 33 in my daily readings, which was new to me. So often when we look at a Bible passage something springs out that we haven’t noticed before. It happened to me recently during a service I was taking and felt I had to change what I was saying to say what the Spirit seemed to be prompting there and then.
The words that sprung out to me from this translation above were, ‘The Lord merely spoke’. The word ‘merely’, to me, puts a fresh perspective on God’s creative power. It comes across that it was not an effort for God to create, but He only had to say a word or two, and it happened.
When we look at all the beauty of creation around us, as we will as the summer gets under way, its awe inspiring to think of how God created it all. We have some Azaleas and a lilac in pots, and they have been beautiful to look at and smell in the recent warm weather. Of course, it’s not just in the summer months that we can admire the creator’s handiwork – all year round there’s something wonderful to see and give thanks for.
It’s so striking that God merely spoke and these wonders came into being. Sometimes we can feel quite insignificant with the magnificence of it all. And yet to God, each one of us is His created child, made in His image, so each one of us is special.
I saw following in another Minister’s letter one time, and I’m sure the author won’t mind me using it. It went something like this:
The point is that the U stand out as unique. And each one of us is a U. God made each one of us, and we’re all important to Him, all special.
When we think about God merely speaking and the world being created, we can also think that He can merely speak into our own situations. There are many things happening in our lives, and it’s often difficult to trust that something good will come out of it. It’s difficult to think that we are important enough for God to notice us and our situations, even when we pour out our hearts in prayer.
But as Jesus taught us, God cares about the lilies of the field and the birds of the air – how much more He care for us (Matthew 6.25-32). At a Church where I took a family service recently I asked why Jesus had to return to heaven. One person reminded us that Jesus is still with us. Another person that they really needed Jesus to help them in something so prayed for help, and the next day they felt at peace.
We know that God won’t wave a magic wand to sort out our problems, but He cares enough to speak into those situations with the power of His word, because He cares about the little details of our lives.
Every blessing, Clare x
IN MEMORIAM: MILLY LUND – 12th May1942 – 6th April 2018
Milly was born in Londonderry, the second youngest in the family of six. She went to the local primary school and then on to a brand new intermediate school which she loved as it gave her the opportunity to pursue her favourite activities, namely, dancing, singing and sport. She sang in the school choir who were prize winners at the famous Londonderry Feis. The family were from a farming background, so holidays were spent out on the farms of uncles and aunts, or the cousins came to stay with us in the city.
In 1956 the family moved to Leeds and Milly went to Thoresby High School where she did secretarial training; her first job was at the Yorkshire Bank. We transferred as a family to Cavendish Road Presbyterian Church and Milly and I joined the Girl Guides, Milly also helped with the Brownies, her title being ‘Tawny Owl’. Our brother Bill helped with the Boys Brigade and Milly and Mary were members of the Fellowship of Youth which met after church in the evenings. As we lived near the church, some of the young people would come back for supper – Mother was always ready to feed the young!
During this time, Milly and I indulged in the usual pastimes of young people, we loved foreign films, rock ‘n roll and ballroom dancing at which Milly excelled, gaining a Silver Medal. We also went on many trips abroad, including working for a summer as chambermaids in Italy, but our favourite location was the French Riviera which we used to travel to on the overnight train sharing very hard, uncomfortable six-berth couchette compartments with strangers – we had little money but it was all good fun.
It was following one of these holidays that Milly decided to have a change of career and, in her early 30s, joined Meanwood Park Hospital as a student nurse, qualifying in 1976 and becoming a Ward Sister in 1978. She enjoyed the work very much and, from the testimonials, was obviously very good at it.
At the hospital, she met her future husband, Paul who ran the Cricket Team. Paul worked at the Ministry of Defence and, in 1986, was asked to become a Liaison Officer with the British Armed Forces in Germany. This motivated them to marry and move to Germany with their two Labrador dogs. They lived in Cologne for a couple of years and made many friends. During a holiday with them, we travelled on the Sealed Train to Berlin – which was still divided – and passed through Checkpoint Charlie to visit the East of the City.
Following Paul’s promotion, they returned to Glasgow where Milly worked at the Marie Curie Centre at Hunters Hill, in an administrative capacity. It was at this time that she contracted Hodgkin’s Lymphoma but, following treatment, she recovered fully, and she and Paul enjoyed their life in Kirkintilloch, walking the dogs in the beautiful Scottish countryside at the weekend and on holiday, playing badminton and going to concerts in Glasgow as they both had a great love of classical music.
After about ten years, Paul was again transferred, this time to Oxfordshire and they lived in the picturesque village of Kings Sutton. Sadly, their marriage ended and Milly returned to spend her retirement in Leeds surrounded by her family. She loved our nieces and nephews and was always ready to play with the little ones with endless patience.
She was a regular attender at this church, well known for her ‘flower arranging’ skills. She did voluntary work, helping children with their reading at the Pakistani Centre, driving for Contact the Elderly and for Maecare where she also undertook regular ‘friendly visiting’.
She joined the U3A where in addition to the general meetings, she enjoyed Country Dancing – right up until November last year – and sang with the Choir.
Throughout her working and social life, Milly was very well liked for her high standards, caring approach and cheerful disposition. The words in the vast number of sympathy cards we have received are a confirmation of this.
To all our Friends at Church
We should like to thank you for all the cards and expressions of sympathy we have received on the death of our sister, Milly. Thank you also for attending Milly’s funeral, with special thanks to those who helped us with its planning, organisation and delivery. It was a great comfort to have you with us to celebrate her life.
Bill, Mary and Gladys
This month’s prayer meeting is on Wednesday 13th June, a time to draw aside for a short time in God’s presence to pray in the quiet for those in need and for our Church. Do come if you can or pray at home.
Coffee & Conversation
Come and join in the conversation over a cuppa and a Bible passage:
Tuesday 19th June at 2pm in the Iona room
Wednesday 27th June at 7.30pm
Our next lunch will be held on Tuesday, 12th June, meeting at 12.30pm for lunch at 1o’clock. It has been so nice to see some new faces recently and they seem to have enjoyed coming – so why don’t you give us a try too? Just let us know you’d like to come – only£3!
At our afternoon meeting at 2.30pm on Tuesday, 26th June, Prof Ian Lawrie will be joining us to explain a little of the mysterious inner workings of the Church Organ. This will be an interesting and enjoyable afternoon. Do come – and bring your friends!
|Pat van Lemmen
Please advise the relevant Elder if you have a notice to be announced in church, preferably by the previous Wednesday.
|FLOWERS FOR JUNE
|Mrs P Hood
|Mrs E Grant
|Mrs E Pickersgill
|Mrs B Mackintosh
Our gratitude to everyone who helps in any way with the flowers. If you would be prepared to assist by putting flowers in a vase, or in an arrangement, I would be glad to know. Money will be provided before the Sunday that is vacant.
Please may I have contributions for the next edition by SUNDAY, 17th JUNE either to me directly or via email to email@example.com. Please note this newsletter will cover the next two months.
A reminder of the date for your diary: Friday, 5th October.
Rev Geoff Ellis will again lead a Quiet Day for us at Parcevall Hall.
All are welcome. The cost, including a full lunch, is £26.
At the top of this Newsletter, you will find the prayer of St Patrick, a prayer Geoff used in the meditations he prepared for our visits to Parcevall Hall. A prayer of peace and reassurance.
The months from December to May bring many church festivals from Advent to Pentecost, but we have few other celebrations in our non-conformist calendar. Traditionally we celebrated St Andrew’s day at Headingley St Columba but rarely our other patron saints. The Catholic Church and Anglican Church have many Saints days and celebrations throughout the year. One such day is 29th June which celebrates St Peter and St Paul; they are remembered together because each was martyred in Rome.
Peter’s character shines through the Gospels and, although I don’t foresee an addition to our calendar, I think the following poem is wonderful portrait of Peter with his strengths and weaknesses.
Impulsive master of misunderstanding
You comfort me with all your big mistakes;
Jumping the ship before you make the landing,
Placing the bet before you know the stakes.
I love the way you step out without knowing,
The way you sometimes speak before you think,
The way your broken faith is always growing,
The way he holds you even when you sink.
Born to a world that always tried to shame you,
Your shaky ego vulnerable to shame,
I love the way that Jesus chose to name you,
Before you knew how to deserve that name.
And in the end your Saviour let you prove
That each denial is undone by love.
Revd Malcolm Guite is a poet priest and Chaplain to Girton College, Cambridge. Although published, he is happy to share his poetry.