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The farewell service for Rev Eddie Sykes and Rev Mary Patterson takes place at 3.00pm on Sunday 30 July at Grahamston United Church, Falkirk, Bute Street, FK2 7DH. All are welcome to attend. For those who cannot make it to the church, the service will be livestreamed and available to view at https://www.youtube.com/@grahamstonunitedchurch/streams

We give thanks for the ministry of Eddie and Mary and wish them every blessing on their retirement. Eddie has circulated a farewell letter (available at this link) which ends with a prayer that we will travel well, and that we may always seek to follow Jesus as our guide – adventurously, faithfully, and graciously.

“The Angels of Christmas” is a series of Advent Bible Studies on Zoom led by Rev Eddie Sykes on Thursdays in December. Each Zoom meeting starts at 10:00am – note that this is slightly earlier than previous studies – and will finish shortly after 11:00am. If you haven’t received the meeting details direct, please email Eddie at ku.gro.tsidohtemhtysornull@retsinim for an access code.

This study is based on the book ‘The Angels of Christmas – Hearing God’s Voice in Advent’ by Susan Robb, published by Abingdon Press only two months ago (ISBN: 978-1791024253). The topics for the sessions are:

1 December – Standing in the Presence of God
Gabriel and Zechariah – Luke 1:5–25

8 December – Let it Be
Gabriel and Mary – Luke 1:26-38

15 December – Acting on the Unbelievable
The Angel of the Lord and Joseph – Matthew 1:18–25

22 December – Hark the Herald Angels Sing
The Angels and the Shepherds – Luke 2:1–14

Announcement on the passing of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II

Fourteen church leaders who make up the Scottish Church Leaders’ Forum have issued a statement on the death of Her Majesty the Queen.

The signatories, who include Bishop Mark Strange, Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church and Rev. Mark Slaney, District Chair, Methodist Church (Scotland), said:

“We join with the Nation in offering our thanks to God for the life of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and for her faithful service as Sovereign throughout these last 70 years.

“We give thanks for her evident Christian faith and recall that in her first Christmas broadcast as Queen in 1952 she asked us to pray for her ‘that God may give me wisdom and strength to carry out the solemn promises that I shall be making, and that I may faithfully serve Him and you, all the days of my life.’

“In her faithful service of God and of the Nation she has surely fulfilled the promises that she made.

“We join with people of good faith everywhere in offering our prayers for His Majesty King Charles III and the Royal Family at this time.”


This announcement was carried on our home page during the period of national mourning.

As we draw towards the beginning of the new Methodist year, we find ourselves facing many challenges – be it at global, national, local or personal levels. Covid may not be as potent, but it is still very present. The cost of living is higher than we have known. We all lament that wars are still being fought as many are experiencing the destruction of their communities. The heat of the summer (in some parts of the UK!) has caused us to realise the potency of global warming.

In our Circuit and churches, we are experiencing reality checks about what we can do following the two years of restriction and living differently.  As congregations we seek guidance about the call that God continues to have on our lives in these new circumstances.

Often in such circumstances we would talk about ‘rebuilding’ or ‘building back’. Are these the right phrases?

Maybe we should be seeing how we can, by the grace of God, ‘build forward’ with all that we have learned over this last while. I believe such thinking begins with dreaming; gaining a vision from God – and not simply trying to remember how we did things before. Yes, do the necessary organisational things properly – but then let God steer us in the directions we need to be guided in.

You can read the rest of Eddie’s pastoral letter at this link.


You’ll have read earlier on our noticeboard that everyone in Scotland with any connection to Methodism is invited to attend ‘Gathering to Scatter’ – the Scottish Methodist Gathering which will take place in Perth from Friday 9 to Sunday 11 September.  You can download a flier with information about the programme at this link


Those who remember the days of Zoom Bible studies will be relieved that the next series is likely to be in person. Coming soon will be four studies on Isaiah, based on the Bible Month material.

During June the sterling efforts of two of our members were rewarded, and they were featured in the local press. We congratulate them both.

Lorraine Wilkinson, member of the former Kirkcaldy Methodist Church (now a member at Rosyth), received recognition for her work in the community at an awards ceremony held in Glasgow. In the linked article, you will see how the words of John Wesley continue to inspire her to put her faith into action for those in need.

Martin Rogers has received the Silver Wolf Award, the Scout Association’s highest award available to adult volunteers, which recognises exceptional service, in Martin’s case for 58 years as a leader. As the linked article says, Martin also received the Volunteer of the Year award from Fife Voluntary Action.

May we all be encouraged by their witness and service.

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Coming up …
  • 2 June 2024 9:30 am Sung Eucharist
  • 9 June 2024 9:30 am Sung Eucharist
  • 16 June 2024 9:30 am Sung Eucharist
  • 23 June 2024 9:30 am Sung Eucharist

More details at this link

 

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