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Baptist Buzz

Last Sunday Pastor Nathan concluded the study on prayer, looking at 1 Peter 1 : 6-9.

Nathan pointed out that life can be but God uses suffering to prove our faith, We can doubt. Why is God allowing this to happen to me

In this passage Peter is writing to real people, and being a fellow sufferer he knows the suffering is only temporary and it will pass. Nathan quoted a saying - “The road to achievement only runs through hardship”. Well as far as we are concerned, the hardships will solidify our faith because we know the road leads to eternal life in His presence. It gives us an eternal perspective on a short term situation. God did not promise us an easy life but he did promise us eternal life through Jesus.

It’s been another busy week at Stonehaven Baptist Church: On Monday we had the craft group when we did some iris folding. It’s an ideal craft for me because it looks good but it’s quite easy to do. Thursday was Mainly Music - always good fun and then we had a church business meeting; not in the “fun” category of course but vital in the life of the church. However, Friday brings the Zone and takes us back to fun again, and the chance to hone my dodge ball or basketball skills (they’re a work in progress).

Please see our facebook page or website for details of all our activities.

News from St James & St Philip’s – 3rd of Lent

It has been another busy week for members of our congregations; On Monday we had our Vestry Meeting where apart from the ‘usual’ topics concerning fabric and finance, we also discussed forthcoming events. The first of these events will be our joining with other churches in Stonehaven in the World Day of Prayer, this year being hosted by Fetteresso church. The service begins at 10.00 and all congregations are welcome.

On Tuesday, 23rd, the Bishop of Brechin, +Nigel, led a talk on ’A Faithful Future’ – the Christian Faith in the World Today. Bishop Nigel shared his thoughts on the challenges to our faith in the turbulence and uncertainties of the world around us. The church hall was the venue, and the Bishop was pleased that it was set up as a ‘café church’.

On Sunday, Peter Smart led the 9.00 am Communion service, while Anne Led the 10.30 service and preached on the topic of Repentance based on the Gospel reading for the day (Luke 13. 1-9). Here Jesus introduces the parable of the fig tree – where an unproductive tree was condemned by the landowner, who wanted to cut it down. He was discouraged by the gardener who says ‘No..but – give it another year. Dig round the roots, introduce some new soil, fertilize it – and see what happens.’

There is hope in this parable, but also urgency. But the important, the beautiful thing, is that the fig tree isn’t in it alone. The gardener helps – the gardener wants us to live. Jesus, the gardener, has a passion. He urges us on, don’t wait – you’ve had a while to get it right, now the time has come to make that important change – to repent. Then flourish. Don’t wait – flourish now. Look at your life and dare to ask the hard questions. Am I stingy with my love for others? Am I withholding forgiveness from old wrongs – am I still bearing grudges against the same old people? Am I worrying about the wrong things so that I fail to examine my life and relationships with others – and with our Lord Jesus Christ. Such questions, like the parable of the fig tree, move us towards repentance.

So then it is only right that we now move towards the holy table (the altar) where the gardener – Jesus – provides food for our journey, refreshment for our faith. Are only the sinless invited to this supper? No, but…repent. Are only those who are worthy invited?, but.. Turn towards what is worthwhile. Is this meal our only means of forgiveness and grace? No, but – eat and drink for the gardener expects his harvest and is waiting for us.

Forthcoming: next Sunday – Mothering Sunday - our service will be celebrated by the Rev Tracy Dowling of Brechin Cathedral. We also have a guest speaker: Wilma Summerville will be coming to talk about the Children’s home she helped fund and still maintains in Romania. She will bring photographs and a projector and will stay afterwards to chat with all present.

The following Sunday, 13th March is the fifth Sunday of Lent, known as Passion Sunday. There will be communion at 9.00 and a service for all the family at 10.30. Bishop Nigel will be coming to celebrate the Eucharist for Passion Sunday at St Philip’s at 400 pm – all are welcome.

Dunnottar linked 
with South

On Sunday, the third in Lent, the morning service was conducted by Mr Ian Wilson. In his Children’s Address, Mr Wilson spoke to them about being lost and how scary it can be until you see something or someone you recognise.

The readings were from Isaiah 55, 1-9 and Luke 13, 1-9, which both are a plea to sinners to repent. God will always forgive us and proved this by sending his son, to be born on Earth and to be sacrificed on the Cross to save us all.

Fairtrade Fortnight started on Monday the 29th February and will continue until Sunday the 13th March. There will be Fartrade goods for sale in stalls after morning worship in the South Hall on the 6th March and in the vestibule at Dunnottar on the 13th March. Please have a look at the goods on offer and even make a purchase or two!

World Day of Prayer is on Friday the 4th May in Fetteresso Church at 10am. Everyone welcome to come along.

At St.Bridget’s Hall on Saturday 5th March the Guild are hosting a Coffee Morning. Adults are £2.50 and children are £1. There will be vaious stalls during the morning. Come along for a cup of coffee or tea with a variety of sweet treats.

The Dunnottar Spring Sale and Coffee Morning is on Saturday 19th March in St Bridget’s Hall from 10am to 12noon.