Songs of Praise & additional services

Songs of Praise

30th July 2023

Opening Prayer


Father God, we praise you today with our hearts and with songs, we praise you for your faithfulness, we praise you for your great power and love. We confess our need for you, our lives don't go so well when we just spin around on our own. We struggle and worry, get weary and worn. Yet you never leave us. Thank you for your presence. Thank you for your care over us, thank you that you breathe renewal right into our souls. We ask for your spirit to fill us, to draw us close to yourself, and to work your purposes through us, as we set our eyes on you.

In Jesus' Name, Amen.


Psalm 22 : 22-26

I will declare your name to my people;
    in the assembly I will praise you.
23 You who fear the Lord, praise him!
    All you descendants of Jacob, honour him!
    Revere him, all you descendants of Israel!
24 For he has not despised or scorned
    the suffering of the afflicted one;
he has not hidden his face from him
    but has listened to his cry for help.

25 From you comes the theme of my praise in the great assembly;
    before those who fear you I will fulfill my vows.
26 The poor will eat and be satisfied;
    those who seek the Lord will praise him—
    may your hearts live forever!

This is the word of the lord


Opening Hymn – Pam’s choice. 506 – O Lord my God

What a great opener to our Songs of Praise – helping us to recognize and celebrates the majesty and power of God! Yes indeed our God - how great thou art!


 Hymn 2 – Sheryl’s choice. Jerusalem

Jerusalem's rousing lyrics, opening with the famous line 'And did those feet in ancient time', were written by the poet William Blake in around 1808.


Over a century later in 1916, composer Hubert Parry set the poem to music to raise Britain's morale as life was bleak with World War One raging and casualties mounting.


2 Kings 2: 1 - 11 Elijah Taken Up to Heaven

1 When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. 2 Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here; the Lord has sent me to Bethel.”

But Elisha said, “As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel.

3 The company of the prophets at Bethel came out to Elisha and asked, “Do you know that the Lord is going to take your master from you today?”

“Yes, I know,” Elisha replied, “so be quiet.”

4 Then Elijah said to him, “Stay here, Elisha; the Lord has sent me to Jericho.”

And he replied, “As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.” So they went to Jericho.

5 The company of the prophets at Jericho went up to Elisha and asked him, “Do you know that the Lord is going to take your master from you today?”

“Yes, I know,” he replied, “so be quiet.”

6 Then Elijah said to him, “Stay here; the Lord has sent me to the Jordan.”

And he replied, “As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.” So the two of them walked on.

7 Fifty men from the company of the prophets went and stood at a distance, facing the place where Elijah and Elisha had stopped at the Jordan. 8 Elijah took his cloak, rolled it up and struck the water with it. The water divided to the right and to the left, and the two of them crossed over on dry ground.

9 When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me, what can I do for you before I am taken from you?”

“Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit,” Elisha replied.

10 “You have asked a difficult thing,” Elijah said, “yet if you see me when I am taken from you, it will be yours—otherwise, it will not.”

11 As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind. 12 Elisha saw this and cried out, “My father! My father! The chariots and horsemen of Israel!” And Elisha saw him no more. Then he took hold of his garment and tore it in two.


Hymn 3 – Martins choice. 173 – Glorious things of thee are spoken


Hymn 4 – Trevor’s choice. 37 – As the Deer pants for the water



Holy God, we bring our prayers to you in the power of your Spirit which unites us, trusting that you will hear our prayers for the world, for ourselves and for the church.


Let us treasure your world like the pearl hidden in the field. It seems at times that we have lost respect for the wonderful gift of your creation, the green fields and the harvests, seas of abundance and rivers of refreshment, for clean air and space to breath. Your wonderful gift is now threatened by an environmental crisis. Why does our living in your world have to be so contentious?  We bicker and argue over space and resources. The strong gain power over the weak. There is no harvest for the poor.

We pray for the people and for the creatures of the field that we show kindness and respect for each other and for all nature. May we treasure the world you give us and let us give everything of ourselves so that we may obtain the kingdom of heaven. 

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer


Lord we pray for your church -let it be like the mustard seed sown into the heart of the people. Let it grow in the good ground of the message, giving of its shade and its protection. May it provide the refuge and shelter that comes with hearing the word of God. We give thanks to all who preach the gospel in this place and to each of us as we live out the word to our friends and family.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer


We pray for your world Lord, for those countries living in situations filled with conflict – thinking especially of Afghanistan, Sudan, Syria, and Ukraine

We pray today for the Mission Possible team who are in Odesa, Ukraine , for Tanya the director and all of the team – praying for the safety of everyone there following the attacks over the last week.

We pray for a calming of the fears of the children in the summer camp

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer


Gracious God, we pray for people we know who are ill, anxious or bereaved. For those who are lonely or living alone, and for those who are weary and carrying heavy burdens. We pray especially today for members of our church family. For Helen as she continues to make progress with the recovery of a difficult hip replacement operation, for Rudy as he is ill with problems of the intestines. We continue to pray for Mary, Janet, Marie-Helene, Sue, Clare, Eleanor and Antonin and Tess’s sister Mary. We pray for Roy as he deals with receiving treatment for prostate cancer. We pray for Sandra, as she comes to terms with the death of her brother, Alan, and for Karen, as she grieves, following the recent death of her sister, Rosamund.


In a moment of quiet we name anyone known personally to us who are in need of God’s love, strength and healing…….


We pray that you will lead them, and us, towards the answers to their problems and your healing and wholeness.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer

Loving God, we offer ourselves to you in faith and in confidence.
Fill us with your Holy Spirit to guide and lead us.
Show us, as we go out into the world how we can best serve you and be your people in our community.


Merciful father, accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.  Amen


Lord’s prayer


Hymn 5 – Charlottes choice. 49 – Be bold, Be Strong


Hymn 6 - David’s choice. 660 - The Lord’s My Shepherd


Hymn 7 – Tess’s choice. 109 – Crown Him With Many Crowns


Closing Prayer

Father God, it’s so glorious to be able to sing in praise and worship to You!

Thank you Lord for the thousands of songwriters, across all of the years, and those to come, that have given us such a wealth of wonderful songs to show our love and our worship to You. Amen


We Share the Grace

A Service of Worship and Prayer

30th April 2023




Martin often refers to Lectio 365 – it’s something I certainly use every single morning and most evenings too.

Just a few weeks ago it focused on Corrie Ten Boom - she was a Dutch watchmaker and later a Christian writer and public speaker. She worked with her father, Casper ten Boom, her sister Betsie ten Boom and other family members to help many Jewish people escape from the Nazis during the Holocaust in World War II by hiding them in her home. They were caught, and she was arrested and sent to the Ravensbrück concentration camp. Her most famous book, The Hiding Place, is a biography that recounts the story of her family's efforts and how she found and shared hope in God while she was imprisoned at the concentration camp. She was born on 15th April 1892 and died on 15th April 1983 – her 91st birthday

She said and believed that …


“What wings are to birds

What sails are to a ship

So is prayer to the soul”


How wonderful is that!

Here is the link to their website – try it out!

In Ephesians 6: Paul writes:


18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.


Prayer connects us to the power of God. Paul makes some specific points for prayer.

Firstly, believers are to pray "in the Spirit." Our prayers are not merely our thoughts, or about our desires, but are to be done in submission to God.
Secondly, we are to "keep alert." While we may not be literally praying every waking second, there is never a good time to set prayer aside. I often find myself maybe watching the television and being just steered into praying for a situation, or someone comes into the café and through conversation I find there’s a need for prayer!
Thirdly, prayer is something we do "with perseverance." We do not pray once each day and then stop. We can talk with God persistently and about all things. Nothing is too big or too small to discuss with the Lord.

Finally, Paul highlights the importance of praying for the needs of each other - We praise God in prayer, we pray for our own needs, and also pray for the needs of others.

Janet and I had a conversation recently about praying for ourselves, especially when we are leading prayers in church and I think we agreed – yes we should?!

Abraham persisted in prayer for Sodom (Gen. 18:23–33). Moses persevered in praying for Israel (Ex. 32:31–32;Deut. 9:25–29). Hannah continued to pray to the Lord for a son (1 Sam. 1:10–11).

When we pray together as the Body of Christ, we are stronger 

The power to persist in prayer comes from the motivation provided by the Holy Spirit.

In Jesus’ final recorded words at His ascension in Acts 1:8, He told the disciples they would “receive power when the Holy Spirit has come.”

It is His Spirit who provides the power to persist and to “overflow with hope,” even when we’re discouraged or the answers to our prayers seem delayed.)

Just this morning in Lectio 365 a little verse from Psalm 27

Hear me as I pray Lord, Be merciful and answer me. My heart has heard you say “Come and talk with me” and my heart responds “Lord I am coming”.

Our prayer response today is when I say

Lord Hear Us you respond with Lord graciously hear us

So let’s Pray that we shall all constantly experience the fellowship of the Holy Spirit.


Opening Prayer
God You gave Your Holy Spirit to the church, to lead us daily in our Christian walk.

Holy Spirit You are God Himself. You are the Spirit of the Father and the Spirit of the Son, the Spirit of God.

You walk with us in our Christian life today and every day.

We know God, because we have a relationship with You, Holy Spirit.

We pray you will continue to bring the presence of God to us, helping us to know that God is always with us and enabling us as we pray in the power of Your Holy Spirit.


Lord Hear Us – Lord Graciously Hear Us


First hymn of Praise – 241 Holy Spirit We Welcome You


Our first prayer focus is for those in need of prayer for Healing


Every week we pray for those in our church family who are in need of God’s healing touch. Let us find deep compassion within ourselves to truly pray for God’s spirit to work – we need to know what the suffering is so that we can name that before God AND to keep it on our hearts and take it home and include it in our own time of prayer.


So let us pray

Lord We pray for Mary as she continues to make progress, so lovely to see her with us for breakfast for the first time yesterday, For Clare as she awaits her appointment to begin her radiotherapy which was cancelled due to the junior doctors strike.  We pray this will be organised quickly and that she doesn’t have to wait until July - she is aware that the tumor is still growing. 

We pray for Marie-Helene as she faces a difficult time to repair the problems with her walking difficulties and for Helen as she works towards her hip replacement

For Janet as she continues to recover from the surgery following her fall – and for myself, as I continue to undergo tests to find the reason for these muscular problems

We pray for Lily’s, son Patrick who was very poorly with pneumonia and positive Covid, having been admitted to CHIVA last week, but today Lord we praise and thank you that we heard that he has turned a corner and the first signs of progress are there.

We also learned yesterday that Sandra’s brother Alan is very poorly back in England so we lift Alan to you Lord and also Sandra, asking for your strength and love to fill her as she deals now with two close members of her family in need of your healing touch.

Isaiah 41:10 - God strengthens you

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

In a time of quiet reflection we ask for the Holy Spirit’s prompting to help us consider how we may be able to help someone we know who is in need of healing – Holy Spirit open our eyes and our hearts and help us to see beyond the brave faces that are often portrayed.


Lord Hear Us – Lord Graciously Hear Us

Praise 50 – Be Still


Our second focus is for those who are Grieving - Martin Reads Psalm 23


We pray - Lord, nothing in life can prepare us for the death of a loved one – whether it’s from a sudden accident or a long illness – It hurts so very deeply, it’s so stunningly final and nothing can prepare us for it. Death is a loss which causes immense grief. The memories, the pain, it’s so deeply emotional.

Often we don’t know what to do to help those with the pain, we struggle to find words to comfort the aching wounds.

Yet grief is a painful but necessary part of the healing, the grief can have a purpose if we come to God who uses this to bring us to a place of wholeness. Show us Lord how we can help to give hope to overcome the pain for those grieving.

We pray specifically for Gareth who lost his brother Christopher just last month.

Mark and Diane who lost their son, my nephew Joshua aged 31 in January this year.

Phil’s mum Joan, who died earlier this month.

Marie-Helene’s husband Michael who died last year.


Help us Lord to not be afraid to talk to people who are grieving. Holy Spirit give us the words to speak and the actions to show concern, comfort and compassion.


Lord Hear Us – Lord Graciously Hear Us


Praise – 1008 The Lord’s My Shepherd.


Our third focus is Mental Health Issues - Lea-Jane Reads Psalm 9:7-18


One of the hardest things about being human in this broken world is experiencing pain without answers and without happy endings. We all face challenges that feel overwhelming. We struggle when we don’t know what to do. For those with mental, or emotional health concerns, the feelings of overwhelm can seem never-ending.

We aren’t guaranteed perfect situations. Our desires aren’t automatically fulfilled. No matter how much we want things to be perfect, we live in an imperfect world full of imperfect, even harmful, people.

Even so, there is hope. So much hope. There is goodness. Our God is bigger and better than we know. One thing we are guaranteed is that the presence of God is with us through every challenge and struggle we face.

Scripture reminds us that Jesus knew pain and suffering well. God understands the deep cries of our hearts. He knows us intimately and cares about what we need.

God wants to meet those feeling depressed and anxious, or weary and worried, through prayer which will bring us close to the One who holds it all in His hands


So we pray…………

Heavenly Father, Comfort and relieve those challenged by mental and emotional illnesses. Give your power of healing to those who minister to their needs, that they may be strengthened in their weakness and have confidence in your loving care

We pray for Mary – Tess’s sister who lost her long-time friend recently and is also facing the loss of her local church which is causing some deep depression

We pray Lord that she will be able to move to another church and start a fresh relationship with new people and draw ever close to you Lord as you bring Mary through this time of change and grief.

I pray for my brother Michael who’s partner died last year and is suffering with mental health issues, but through that pain and suffering he has made progress and is now living with my parents and helping them with their lives too – thank you Lord!

We pray particularly for young people today who suffer at the hands of bullies, and from peer pressure in schools and colleges, the level of suicide is so high Lord, I’m reminded of a number of school students in Toulouse who took their own lives last summer. And

Only this week a petition has been handed into Downing Street calling for Universities to have a greater duty of care for the hundreds of students who take their own lives each year

We pray for the families who have to cope after this has happened. To talk openly about the suicide is not easy, but we pray Lord for wisdom and confidence in these situations for the hospitals, teachers and mental health workers who have to face the outcome of these traumas

Give them strength and wisdom to act as a source of calm for those who are affected by this.


Lord Hear Us – Lord graciously hear us


PRAISE – 746 What a friend we have in Jesus


Our fourth focus is Relationship Issues within marriage - Helen reads Isaiah 43: 1-7


Lord we lift Eleanor and Antonin to you with their marriage problems. We pray for the impact this has had on them as a couple, their parents, the children who so often suffer such anxiety when relationships go wrong. We want to pray today Lord for Marie-Helene who is currently spending time with her daughter Eleanor and the family. She was fearful Lord for the situation her daughter was in and it’s so pleasing to hear the changes that have been taking place for the whole family since we have been praying for them. Thank you Lord! We pray that this will continue and their relationship will grow even stronger!


Lord Hear Us – Lord Graciously Hear Us


PRAISE – 1072 - In Christ Alone.


Our fifth focus is for LONELY People - Janet reads Psalm 25


We pray for those we know within our friends and family and for those we don’t know who may feel desperate and alone. We pray for all who are housebound and who long for a visitor; for those who just need a friendly ear to find their comfort. We pray for the homeless and the victimized,

Living alone is not easy Lord and I just pray that we would think and act a little more for those people that do - I particularly pray for Lorraine, who has recently been very poorly, she spends a lot of time alone due to her disability when her husband is working back in the UK.

Let’s just sit in the silence of God’s presence, thinking of anyone we know who is on their own and  seek the Spirits guidance on how we can help them.

Lord hear us - Lord graciously hear us


PRAISE - 987 Here Is Love Vast As The Ocean


Robin Mark the composer of this hymn shares the idea that The love of God is like the ocean – you can see the beginning but not the end – it’s just immeasurable!


Our sixth and final topic is those suffering with Cancer - Philip reads 2 Corinthians 1:3-6


We pray for those who have been diagnosed with cancer and being treated – thinking of Els who came into the café today to tell me she’s facing her final three days of radiotherapy! For Sharon who is now in remission and Steve as he faces yet more surgery.

We lift those who face the anxiety of tests to determine a feared diagnosis. 

We think about those diagnosed with terminal cancer Lord - Ruth, Julia, and Karen’s sister, Rosamund.

We ask you Lord to bring calmness to our loved ones who are terminally ill. Remind them of your love as they go through this challenging time. Please hold them tightly and remove anything that will bring fear and uncertainty into their hearts and minds. Help those supporting them through this time to bear the difficulties it brings and to rest assured that you are there with them, suffering as they suffer.


Lord Hear Us – Lord graciously hear us


Praise – 712 Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus


I know there are so many, many, other prayer needs – too many to cover here today but I just felt that God placed these situations, members and friends of our church on my heart to focus on today.


So to conclude our time of prayer and praise this morning, we unite together with the prayer that Jesus taught us.


LORD’s Prayer

Our Father, Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy name

Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done

On earth as it is in Heaven

Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses

As we forgive those who trespass against us

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil

For thine is the Kingdom, the power and the glory

For ever and ever



Final Prayer

Lord today I thank you for the prompting of the prayer focus within this service, trusting that through You, Father God, my Christian brothers and sisters will feel able to do the same thing and develop in unity, just as Paul instructed the church in Phillipi.

To feel able to share our own personal prayer needs with each other, and also for those people that we know and love who are in need of prayer.

Let us not hold back because of lack of trust, or thinking that people don’t want or need to know, let us boldy approach Your throne in trust and hope.


Lord Hear Us – Lord Graciously Hear Us




THE GRACE of our Lord Jesus Christ, And the love of God, And the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all ever more, Amen.

Good Friday Meditation - 2023


29th January 2023


Psalm and Opening Prayer


Psalm 95

Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;

    let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.

2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving

    and extol him with music and song.

3 For the Lord is the great God,

    the great King above all gods.

4 In his hand are the depths of the earth,

    and the mountain peaks belong to him.

5 The sea is his, for he made it,

    and his hands formed the dry land.

6 Come, let us bow down in worship,

    let us kneel before the Lord our Maker;

7 for he is our God

    and we are the people of his pasture,

    the flock under his care.


Lord as people all over the world come to praise you this morning, we thank you that you give us the opportunity to sing our praises to you and we just take a moment of stillness to thank you for the blessings you have brought into our lives



1.  What Kind of Greatness Can This Be – Graham Kendrick- Sue’s choice


I have always been a bit of an advocate for new worship songwriters – always looking out for new worship songs that would bring believers closer to God through their worship.

Back in the UK when I lead worship for around 15 years in the Anglican church in the village where I lived, I started working with an established choir – all of them aged 70 plus ( I was aged around 40 at the time) all used to singing very traditional hymns, but we worked together with a real mix of styles of hymns and they gradually became open to leading the congregation in new worship songs. Because there are some wonderful new worship composers out there – and I truly believe we must encourage them to become the future Charles Wesleys and John Newtons!


Graham Kendrick is by no means a new songwriter, but this one in particular – for me serves to remind us of the core truth of Christmas, that God actually came into this world, into humanity, actually being born as a baby. Such wonder, amazement and mystery surround this event

Luke 2

The Birth of Jesus

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

What kind of greatness can this be

That chose to be made small?

Exchanging untold majesty

For a world so pitiful

That God should come as one of us

I'll never understand

The more I hear the story told

The more amazed I am


So we are going to begin our worship with a time of reflection as we sit and listen to the songwriter sing this to us Hymn 959 – we can follow the words


2.  HYMN 631 - Tell Out My Soul – Helen’s choice


3.  HYMN 746 – What A Friend We Have In Jesus – Pam’s Choice



4.  Hymn 751 – When All Your Mercies – Neil’s choice


5.       Jean-Claude Gianadda – Trouver dans ma vie ta présence – Marie Héléne’s choice


This is one of the most sung songs in French-speaking parishes. Its easy-to-remember melody is inscribed in the memory of people who come only occasionally to church; it allows them to participate and easily enter into a celebration.  It reminds us that God is present at our side 

In the “hit parade” of mass songs, Finding Your Presence in My Life has been sitting for decades at the top of the rankings. 


Trouver dans ma vie ta présence

Tenir une lampe allumée

Choisir d'habiter la confiance

Aimer et se savoir aimé


Croiser ton regard dans le doute

Brûler à l'écho de ta voix

Rester pour le pain de la route

Savoir reconnaître ton pas


Finding your presence in my life

Its like holding a lighted light

Choosing to live with trust in You

Loving and knowing I am loved


Brûler quand le feu devient cendres

Partir vers celui qui attend

Choisir de donner sans reprendre

Fêter le retour d'un enfant


Trouver dans ma vie ta présence

Tenir une lampe allumée

Choisir d'habiter la confiance

Aimer et se savoir aimé


Ouvrir quand tu frappes à ma porte

Briser les verrous de la peur

Savoir tout ce que tu m'apportes

Rester et devenir veilleur


Trouver dans ma vie ta présence

Tenir une lampe allumée

Choisir d'habiter la confiance

Aimer et se savoir aimé


6.  191 – God of Glory We Exalt Your Name – Trevor’s choice


7.  649 - The King of Love My Shepherd Is – Mary’s choice


8.  882 - Lord of All Hopefulness – Janet’s choice



Lord of all hopefulness, kindliness, and gentleness,

who’s voice is contentment and presence is balm

We pray for your bliss, your strength, your love and your peace in our hearts Lord as we now pray for those known to us and in need of your healing, your comfort and compassion

Lord In Your Mercy – Hear Our Prayer

Now say together The Lords Prayer

Our Father, Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy name

Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done

On Earth as it is in Heaven

Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses

As we forgive those who trespass against us

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil

For Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory

For ever and ever     Amen



HYMN 33 - And Can It Be –  Jess’s choice


AMEN – I just love that 4th verse

My Chains fell off, my heart was free

I rose, went forth, and followed Thee


Thank you to everyone who chose a favourite hymn today, thank you to Neil for playing so wonderfully for us – lets finish with a


Father God, thank you that You call us to follow you, help us Lord to be true disciples.

Reading and sharing Your word, Trusting in your unfailing love and continually singing Your praises



Share The grace…….

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God

And the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all, evermore   Amen

30th October 2022


Welcome and Introduction to our second Songs of Praise

Our first one found me being prompted to share some of the life of Charles Wesley – more specifically his mother Susannah and the role she played in her two son’s life, a real influence on them!

This time I’ve been inspired by another hymnwriter which we’ll hear more about a little later.


I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed but in the front of our hymn books there is a quotation from Martin Luther which says: “Next to the word of God, music deserves the highest praise. The gift of language combined with the gift of song was given to man that he should proclaim the word of God through music! So let us continue to make His presence glorious in our service today!


Prayer – Father God we come before you to praise and worship Your Holy Name, thankful that we are in Your presence, our Creator – just simply to be a soul in Your presence and give our hearts to You!


HYMN 1 - 1040

Come Now Is the time to worship

Psalm 95

1 Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;

    let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.

2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving

    and extol him with music and song.

3 For the Lord is the great God,

    the great King above all gods.

4 In his hand are the depths of the earth,

    and the mountain peaks belong to him.

5 The sea is his, for he made it,

    and his hands formed the dry land.

6 Come, let us bow down in worship,

    let us kneel before the Lord our Maker;

7 for he is our God

    and we are the people of his pasture,

    the flock under his care.

Today, if only you would hear his voice


HYMN 2 – 496 – Tess. O for a thousand tongues to sing.

In the Mission Praise songbook it is suggested for Health, Healing & Deliverance so I thought a good one for this season of thanksgiving, our survival of Covid etc.

Also, because I love it!


Psalm 69: verse 30

'I will praise God's name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.'


Lord, thank you that I can come before You with joyful songs. All the earth will shout for joy to Your name! I praise You today because You have wonderfully created me in Your image. You are my Good Shepherd, and You will lead and direct my life.


Charles and his brother, John, became friends with a group of Moravian Christians as they returned by ship to England from the American colonies.  One of the Moravian leaders was a man named Peter Bohler -- a man that the Wesleys much admired for his deep faith.  Bohler made the comment, "Oh, Brother Wesley, the Lord has done so much for my life.  Had I a thousand tongues, I would praise Christ Jesus with every one of them."  Those words inspired Wesley to write this hymn.


HYMN 3 – 122 – Janet. Eternal Father Strong To Save.

Verse 1 refers to God the Father forbidding the waters to flood the earth

Psalm 104:5-9

5 He set the earth on its foundations;

    it can never be moved.

6 You covered it with the watery depths as with a garment;

    the waters stood above the mountains.

7 But at your rebuke the waters fled,

    at the sound of your thunder they took to flight;

8 they flowed over the mountains,

    they went down into the valleys,

    to the place you assigned for them.

9 You set a boundary they cannot cross;

    never again will they cover the earth.

 Verse 2 refers to Jesus’ miracles of stilling a storm and walking on the waters of the Sea of Galilee

Matthew 8:23-27

Jesus Calms the Storm

23 Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. 24 Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. 25 The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”

26 He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.

27 The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”

Verse 3 references the Holy Spirit’s role in the creation of the earth

(Genesis 1:1-2)

The Beginning

1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.

Verse 4 refers to Psalm 107

23 Some went out on the sea in ships;

    they were merchants on the mighty waters.

24 They saw the works of the Lord,

    his wonderful deeds in the deep.

25 For he spoke and stirred up a tempest

    that lifted high the waves.

26 They mounted up to the heavens and went down to the depths;

    in their peril their courage melted away.

27 They reeled and staggered like drunkards;

    they were at their wits’ end.

28 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble,

    and he brought them out of their distress.

29 He stilled the storm to a whisper;

    the waves of the sea[a] were hushed.

30 They were glad when it grew calm,

    and he guided them to their desired haven.

31 Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love

    and his wonderful deeds for mankind.

32 Let them exalt him in the assembly of the people

    and praise him in the council of the elders.



HYMN 4 – 674 – Marie-Helene. There is a Green Hill far away.


Cecil Frances Alexander (1818-95) was the composer of this extremely popular hymn,

Cecile was a Victorian Irish hymn writer who wrote over 200 hymns, characterised by their ability to ‘make theology picturesque’

She apparently drew her inspiration from caring for children and the sick.

Cecile had such great passion for children, to the extent that the proceeds from her hymn book went toward a school for deaf and mute children, which initially met in a small building on the grounds of her family’s property

She married Rev. William Alexander in 1850, he was a rector in, County Tyrone, Ireland.

Her beloved husband survived her by nearly sixteen years, but he was always proud to be known as the husband of the great hymn writer and this hymn was sung at his graveside.

Her work was also born out of a personal commitment to Christ-like service toward others.

She was remembered for carrying soup and other nourishment to the sick and poor in the most remote parts of the parish

She sent a man to school whose education had been somewhat neglected in his youth, and gave him a weekly allowance towards his maintenance out of her own pocket, and when he had made sufficient progress she found an appointment for him as a national school teacher.

As it was written in her hymn, she trusted in His redeeming blood, and tried his works to do.[2]

So in 1848, while living in County Tyrone she published a set of hymns, and three in particular: were inspired from the Apostles Creed


 “All things bright and beautiful” links to the creed with “Maker of heaven and earth”),


 “Once in royal David’s city” links into “Conceived by the Holy Spirit,”


 and “There is a green hill far away” (which links to how Jesus  “Suffered under Pontius Pilate,” ).


The green hill is Calvary, far away in both time and geography and Cecile would often pass by a green hill between her home and Derry, and she associated it with what Calvary might look like.

She summarized the thoughts behind her hymn as:

Lord Jesus took the sinners place.

The sinless Christ willingly carried His Cross to that "green hill far away".

He faced the sinner's penalty - Unparalleled suffering at the hands of men!

Unimaginable suffering at the hands of God! "What pains He had to bear!" He paid the sinner's price In the darkness of Calvary, at infinite cost, He 'paid the price of sin' and three days later He rose again.

Jesus did so much for us– but there is something that we must do and that’s to respond to His love: "We must love Him too". and

"Trust in His redeeming blood." because

"He died to save us all",

"There is a Green Hill" – is a hymn that tells an old, but real story.

Its good to sing and reflect on the words.

Its good to know the meaning.

But best of all, it’s so good to know the Lord Jesus as our Saviour.



So let’s stand to say together and share the beliefs and truths of our faith in the words of the



I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of Heaven and Earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried;

He descended to the dead.

On the third day He rose again; He ascended into Heaven,

He is seated at the right hand of the Father, and He will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church,

the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. AMEN


HYMN 5 – 435 – Lord Jesus Christ. Trevor’s choice leads us beautifully on from this

You have come to us, born as one of us, Mary’s son.


HYMN 6 – 249 – How lovely on the mountains. Charlotte & Martin’s choice


Of course words straight from Isaiah 52

7 How lovely on the mountains Are the feet of him who brings good news, Who announces peace And brings good news of happiness, Who announces salvation, And says to Zion, "Your God reigns!"

8 Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices, They shout joyfully together; For they will see with their own eyes When the LORD restores Zion.

9 Break forth, shout joyfully together, You waste places of Jerusalem; For the LORD has comforted His people, He has redeemed Jerusalem.

10 The LORD has bared His holy arm In the sight of all the nations, That all the ends of the earth may see The salvation of our God.


HYMN 7 – 907 – O God of Bethel. Neil’s choice.


Genesis 28:10-15.

10 Jacob left Beersheba and set out for Harran. 11 When he reached a certain place, he stopped for the night because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones there, he put it under his head and lay down to sleep. 12 He had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13 There above it[c] stood the Lord, and he said: “I am the Lord, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the land on which you are lying. 14 Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east, to the north and to the south. All peoples on earth will be blessed through you and your offspring.[d] 15 I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”



Our vows, and our prayers we now present before God’s throne of grace


LISTENING - I give you all the honour


Lord we do indeed give You all the honour and praise and we thank You that You call us to You.

We pray for our church here in Mirepoix, asking for Your Holy Spirit to move upon every one of us as we work to do Your will, to spread Your kingdom here in this town and build Your church. We pray for Martin and Charlotte, and for the Co-ordinating group, praying especially for the next meeting taking place in a few days..

Lord In Your Mercy – Hear our prayer


Father God I want to pray and lift up to you some of the business owners here in this town where we meet every week -  praying for Gabriel as he recovers from his illness, for Christophe as he tries to build his business, for David who needs some of your wisdom, for Julie as she tries to bring together activities within the community of this town, for the Maire - for his responsibilities, asking for wisdom to guide the changes he is organizing which are often questioned and challenged. For Sebastien as he battles with the issues that surround him

Lord in your mercy – Hear our prayer


And we take a few moments of silence as we name anyone on our hearts who is in need of your love, your healing and your grace

Lord in Your mercy – hear our prayer


We Say together the LORD’S PRAYER

Our Father, who art in heaven,

Hallowed be Thy name; Thy kingdom come;

Thy will be done; on Earth as it is in Heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our trespasses,

as we forgive those who trespass against us.

And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory,

for ever and ever. Amen


HYMN 8 – 445 - Shine Jesus Shine. Pam’s Choice



Shine Jesus Shine!


From Mattthew 5:14-16

“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven



The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all ever more. Amen

31st July 2022

Opening Prayer – Father God, we come before you this morning in praise, thanksgiving and adoration. As we lift our praises to you, we thank you for the gifts you give to songwriters old and new, for the many memories they create and the meanings they contain as we worship you. Amen


Welcome to our first Songs of Praise here at church, often we have gone to the home of Neil and Helen to sing our songs of praise for which we have always greatly appreciated the hospitality, fellowship and wonderful playing of Neil – plus the afternoon tea added by Helen!!!


As you may know the church is trying out how we can be church every week and for those months with 5 weeks we try and do something a little different! Hence our service today – so thank you to everyone who has chosen a favourite hymn – hope we’re not too hoarse after singing 8 of them this morning!

I promised Francoise I would not be doing a ‘sermon’ but just say a few words here and there together with bible readings for some of the chosen songs!


As I was planning the service, it became obvious that there is a link with the learning that we are experiencing now with Martin, what is church?

In one of Martin’s earlier sessions, we concluded that church is a community of those called out to do God’s will which made me think about when Jesus called out his first disciples


Bible Reading – Matthew 4 :18-22

Jesus Calls His First Disciples

18 As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19 “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” 20 At once they left their nets and followed him.

21 Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22 and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.


‘The Chosen’ is a new online filming of Jesus life on earth and this particular scene is so moving! I’m watching it now and it just so brings Jesus and his teachings to ‘life’!


When Jesus began his teaching ministry, he began to gather those who would hear his teaching and then preach the message themselves. They would witness the many miracles he performed and then be witnesses to testify to them.

He went to the sea of Galilee, amongst the fishermen, normal working people, not priests, not educated professionals, not legal executives.


He chose these disciples to share God’s love in Christ with the entire world.

And God’s message through them has changed the history of the world and led to the establishment of the church

God chooses us to change us, and for us to then be an agent of change wherever we live, work or travel!

By his grace he has chosen us to BELIEVE in him as our Lord and Saviour, to STAND firm in the truth of His word, in spite of the wicked opposition in the world, to SERVE Him through loving those around us, and to faithfully and joyfully FOLLOW wherever he leads us.


Opening Hymn – I’ve chosen because it encompasses for me many of these callings


1.    Opening Hymn: Here I Am Lord – 857


2.    Diane’s choice - And Can It Be – 33


Romans 6:17-18 - Sue

Thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed

Having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness


I look at many of these wonderful lines of truth in this hymn, BUT the ones Diane shared with me when she asked for this hymn were:

My chains fell off, my heart was free

I rose, went forth, and followed thee!



Charles Wesley wrote this hymn to celebrate the “amazing love” he had come to know just after he found his faith in God!


Thank you, Lord, that we can still experience your amazing love in our lives!


What do we know about Charles Wesley, his influences and his parents?

Every morning and evening I use an app on my phone to read God’s word, pray and learn many things – it’s from an English church called 24/7 Prayer and is called Lectio 365

You can either read the daily verses and prayers or you can listen to it being read by one of the leaders of the church! Its brilliant when sometimes last thing at night and I’m too tired to read – just to relax and listen!

This week, co-incidentally, there was a focus on Susanna Wesley, mother of John and Charles Wesley.

She was a formidable leader long before her sons rose to fame. She endured a difficult marriage to a preacher who was imprisoned twice! Her husband was a rector of their parish church in Epworth, but he was sent to prison for financial mismanagement. Their home was burned down twice and very tragically nine of their nineteen children died in infancy. She raised their remaining ten children single-handedly, seeing motherhood as a vocation from God.

With nowhere at home to pray very privately – and I would imagine she needed to pray very much for her difficult situation – she was often found with her apron over her head! The children quickly learned that mum was not to be disturbed when they saw her in this unusual posture! But she would pour out her heart to God, no doubt mourning her lost babies, praying for her infuriating husband and praying for each of her remaining children individually.

Her husband’s replacement in the pulpit failed miserably to preach the gospel so she took matters into her own hands!

She started a Sunday school for her own children in her kitchen, it attracted so many of her neighbours that it had to be moved into the barn. Before long, 200 people were gathering every Sunday to worship, to pray and to listen to Susanna reading sermons.

She developed into a world-class leader, educator and prayer warrior but her mission was always firstly to her own family and her neighbourhood. She devoted herself tirelessly to this task, praying faithfully for those ten children, teaching them all diligently, giving the three boys and 7 girls the same education for six hours a day. She also gave an hour of exclusive time to each child each week.

She was a housewife with a hard life from a small town in rural England but she became known as the mother of some eighty million Methodists in more than 130 nations today! The example of faith and religious reverence she set for her children inspired John and Charles to become powerful spiritual leaders, and to launch the Methodist movement

Praise God for Susanna’s calling!

3.     Trevor’s Choice - Meekness & Majesty - 465


Ephesians 3 :14-21

A Prayer for the Ephesians

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

4.    Marie-Helene

He’s got the whole world in his hands - 225


Psalm 24 – Marie-Helen to read

The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it

The world, and all who live in it,

For He founded it on the seas and established it on the waters



Lord God, You created our beautiful planet – it is your gift for us to share but Father you also gave us the responsibility to care for, and to protect your world. Forgive us Lord for not owning this responsibility

As creation groans with the pollution of land, air and seas, with the effects of climate change, with the abuse and exploitation of the earth, help us Lord to make every effort we can to make a difference.

Lord in your mercy - hear our prayer

5.     Neil’s Choice

When I survey the wondrous cross – 755

Neil’s words - Isaac Watts is the epitome of hymn-writing hero's, showing that the meaning of the words transcends the generations, definitely as real now as 300 years ago! 


6.     Helen’s  choice

God Is Working His Purpose Out - 189


7.     Dear Lord & Father of mankind - 111

Sheryl’s choice because of such great memories of the first hymn sang at her wedding to Bob in 1984


8.    FINAL HYMN - Pam's Choice


How Great Thou Art – 506

What a wonderful hymn to finish our praises to God!


And when I think that God, His Son not sparing

Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in

That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing

He bled and died to take away my sin


Romans 8:32

He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also freely give to us all things!



Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee

How great Thou art, how great Thou art

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee

How great Thou art, how great Thou art!


Psalm 8:1-9 – Helen

 Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory in the heavens.

2 Through the praise of children and infants

    you have established a stronghold against your enemies,

    to silence the foe and the avenger.

3 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers,

the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,

4 what is mankind that you are mindful of them,

    human beings that you care for them?[c]

5 You have made them[d] a little lower than the angels[e]

    and crowned them[f] with glory and honour.

6 You made them rulers over the works of your hands;

    you put everything under their[g] feet:

7 all flocks and herds, and the animals of the wild,

8 the birds in the sky, and the fish in the sea,

    all that swim the paths of the seas.

9 Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!


Final Prayer - Sue

Lord God how truly great you are!

Psalm 86 tells us

All the nations you have made

    will come and worship before you, Lord;

    they will bring glory to your name.

10 For you are great and do marvellous deeds;

    you alone are God.


Father God, we ask that Your Holy Spirit will help our church to focus our priorities on sharing Your good news, welcoming everyone to come to know Jesus our Saviour, and to experience just how great You are!


Using one of Susanna Wesley’s prayers as our own we say together


Help us Lord to remember that religion is not to be confined to the church, but that everywhere we go, we are in Your presence

May our every word and action have a moral content

May all the happenings of our lives prove useful and beneficial to others and to You

May everything, I encounter, give me an opportunity to learn daily and grow into Your likeness



The Lord’s Prayer - All

Our Father, who art in heaven Hallowed be Thy name

Thy kingdom come

Thy will be done;

On earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our trespasses,

As we forgive those who trespass against us.

And lead us not into temptation;

But deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the kingdom,

The power and the glory

For ever and ever. Amen.


The Grace - All 

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God

and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all evermore. Amen.