Worship Together March 2015
Churches Together in the Victoria Hall, 8th March 2015
On Sunday 8th March, over 150 folk from all the churches in Selkirk, Ashkirk and the valleys, met in the Victoria Hall to worship together. Following on from the World Day of Prayer earlier in the week, the service focussed on praying for the world.
The service began with a responsive call to worship led by some younger folk, then the musicians led the gathered congregation in “All creatures of our God and King”, a rousing start to the service. A reading from Luke reminded us that we should never give up praying.
The theme was developed in four parts. Firstly, we though about our world – the beauty and wonder of it – and its fragility and the damage we have done. All were invited to write down one aspect of our world which brings us joy, and one aspect which brings sadness; these were passed to neighbours and prayers were offered.
Next we thought about war and the plight of refugees – and recognised our part in it, praying for peace and wisdom for leaders in troubled places. The congregation were invited to respond “Hear our prayers” after each section of prayer, then to share “the peace” with neighbours in the hall, and to carry that peace out into the world at the end of the service.
The third aspect was healing and wholeness. We heard contrasting stories of Sierra Leone, devastated by Ebola, and Rwanda, where reconciliation after the genocide of 1994 had led to the establishment of a universal health care system – a good news story. We heard the story of Jesus healing a leper, and prayed that we would follow in his footsteps, bringing healing in his Name.
Between each section, the lively music group, drawn for several churches, led us in two more hymns: “Come people of the risen King” and “We cannot measure how you heal”.
The final input was from Amy Ward, who told us of the ministry of El Barrio 4 Christ in Guatemala, where she had been working for the last 2 years – a story of green shoots of hope in a context of poverty, violence and corruption. An offering was taken, amounting to £579, which will go to support the ongoing work of Christian Aid and El Barrio 4 Christ.
Following the final hymn, the congregation remained to chat and have coffee, taking the time to meet members of other congregations.
All this was possible thanks to the hard work of the coordinating group, the musicians, the technical team, the stewards, Jacqui Lee for organising children’s activities at the back of the hall, the kitchen team and the hall keeper.