Sunday 27th December: First Sunday of Christmas
Listen to the service as a radio broadcast on 105.9 BishopFM just after the 11am Sunday morning news, or stream it at 11am on the website through YouTube [and join in with hymn-singing for 15 minutes beforehand].
Happy Christmas and a Peaceful and Safe New Year to you!
Below you can find the radio podcast if you can’t listen on 105.9 BishopFM and also the YouTube video stream, which will go live at 11am on Sunday. You will also see the regular extras including the video of Susan’s sermon.
If you enjoy this web content and don’t already donate to the church by standing order or by church envelope, and you would like to give, you can click on the button below and follow the instructions:
Radio podcast for 105.9BishopFM
(live at 11am, at the same time as the radio broadcast, on Sunday 15th November, and available here after that, with 15 minutes of hymns to join in with beforehand,)
If you haven’t listened to the audio or video services above, and wish to read the lectionary readings before considering these further worship resources for this week, follow this link to biblegateway.com for this week’s Bible readings from:
Don’t forget that you can also tune into the website here every day of the week to listen to church friends sharing daily reflections, including Bible readings and inspiration… or get them on the telephone on 01388 436810… do join us!
As we continue to worship online, we have a pick and mix approach to this sermon slot. You can choose to listen to (1) Susan’s sermon as we have had through lockdown. Today you might also choose to look at (2) Rev John’s Seasonal thought (3) the pdf sheet from Roots or (4) the pdf sheet The Vine, or read (5) the Connexional reflection; or otherwise to come (6) to the church garden to prayer walk the labyrinth or or if nothing else to stay home (7) and simply take time for yourself and reflect on the readings for the day.
1. If you would like to listen to a sermon for today by Local Preacher Susan Thorne, click on the video below
2. or watch an all age video from Connor
3. or you might choose to click on the image below to go to the pdf rootsontheweb adult sheet with further thoughts on these readings
4. or read the VINE worship sheet which MWiB are supporting this year:
5. or read the reflection from the Methodist Connexional Worship Resources for this week below:
Stop, take a deep breath if you want, pause for a moment. It is barely a moment since Christmas was upon us. This Sunday, between Christmas and Epiphany, gives us space to slow down and to reflect. As we have watched
and waited over the weeks of advent, we have recalled God’s work over thousands of years as we awaited the arrival of the Son of God amongst us.
And now, just two days after Christmas, we mark the months and years of
Jesus’s infancy. Time has slowed to give us the opportunity to take in the majesty, the hope, the transformation that the birth of one miraculous child brings. We can stand back in awe and wonder!
We see that awe and wonder in the accounts of Simeon and Anna. Each has waited a long, long time in the promise of Messiah, and now encounter the infant Jesus. Like us, they have watched and waited in anticipation.
As Luke tells us, their hope has not been in vain, but this is not the powerful speaker, or charismatic leader they encounter. The Jesus they see, and in whom they recognise God’s presence, is just a child. The long-prophesied
acts of the scriptures and those that Anna foretold are yet to come to be.
This infant cannot undertake the world-altering ministry that will come… yet…
So we find ourselves once again waiting, watching, hoping, praying…
We know what is to come. We live in the light and hope of the transformation Jesus’s ministry and life, death and resurrection made possible for all of us.
That light and hope is powerful as it shows us that even while we are waiting, we can still trust in God’s life-giving spirit amongst us.
And while we continue to wait with anticipation we can, like Simeon, take a
moment to pause and give thanks for God amongst us here and now.
During this season the Methodist Church is proclaiming “God is with us”. God is with us is more than a statement. It’s a reminder that God is always with us. We are encouraged to share our story (and other people’s stories) of walking with God in this extraordinary year. How might you share how God has been with you this week? Find out more here https://www.methodist.org.uk/christmas/
Take a time to sit quietly
thought from the connexional resources during the pandemic this week by Henderson-Merrygold
6. or take a walk to the church garden and pray as you walk around the labyrinth there, silently listening to God as you travel inwards to the cross at the centre and then back outwards again into the world. Enjoy the autumn leaves as you go! The path is still visible, if you kick the leaves out of the way.
7. and/or sit quietly and reflect on the prayers, readings and thoughts here and listen for what God might be saying to you through them
(if you haven’t found them before and are interested for yourself, your children or grandchildren, have a look at the Children’s Page where Millie posts for Young Church every Sunday at 10.30am and there are links to Bishop Auckland Parish and CAFOD children’s worship.
Youth Team Resources
Hannah’s Creative Prayer
Today is the last Sunday in 2020. Thinking about the last year, what ‘resolutions’ could you make for 2021. These could be things in your Christian journey, like taking some time out of the day to read a part of the bible, or in other parts of your life. If you are able, you can ask God to help you throughout this year and be with you in any challenges you may face