The latest edition of the church magazine.
Communicating the message
Picture the scene. It is A.D. 50 and people have gathered to hear a new story about someone called Jesus from a far away place named Judea. They gather in someone’s house with an eye always kept on the street because authorities are arresting people who follow Jesus teachings.
Fast forward 300 years and now you have a group of people gathered in a church building. There are priests out front leading the people in worship. Then very carefully, because they are very rare and valuable, a scroll is brought out with the words of Jesus written on it. Someone reads from this scroll whilst the people listen.
Fast forward another 300 years. Now a monk in a monastery is hunched over a writing desk. They are painstakingly copying word for word a Bible that will then be used in churches. It takes months and maybe years to complete each copy so they are only kept in the biggest of churches. They are so valuable some of them are actually chained to the stone so they won’t be stolen. It’s from these Bibles the priest reads on holy days.
Fast forward to 1450 when a German called Johannes Gutenberg printed the first major book in the Western world using moveable type. It was a bible, now known as the Guttenberg Bible.
Instead of a monk taking months/years lots of copies can be printed and take only days to be put together. Now every church can have their own Bible. Even wealthy people can afford their own bible now. You still need to know Latin to understand it though!
From 1560 onwards there are a plethora of Bible versions only this time in English and printed. The aim is for every family to have their own Bible.
On, January 2, 1921, just two months to the day after its first broadcast, KDKA of Pittsburgh, aired the first religious service in the history of radio. Pittsburgh’s Calvary Episcopal Church was chosen because one of the radio engineers happened to be a member of the choir and made the arrangements. The junior pastor, Rev. Lewis B. Whittemore, preached because the senior pastor was suspicious of the new medium. The technicians (one a Jew, one Catholic) were outfitted with choir robes in order to keep them from distracting the congregation.
In September 1929 another new fangled idea took off, namely television. This was when the first regular broadcasting took place from the BBC. It wasn’t long before church services were using this new medium to get the message out.
Book, radio and television were joined in the 1990’s by commercial internet which opened up a whole new avenue for sharing the gospel and today all these mediums are used for communicating Jesus teaching.
Increasingly more and more now is ‘online’. This allows people to share information much easier across much larger distances. It allows information to be readily available. You can’t lose the web in the same way you can lose a book or a magazine. Nor will the information decay and discolour over time, it is always there. You can’t mark it with a cup of coffee!
Through all these developments the medium has grown from an oral tradition to a complex multi-medium approach. Yet in all of this the message has not changed. We still preach Christ and him crucified.
For ourselves here in Granton the challenge of working in this world means making the most of online opportunities. This is why we have decided to make the magazine primarily available online with paper copies printed on request.
Jesus asked us to spread the message; he did not say how. The way we do it, is different to the way it was originally done and the way we do it will be different to how they do it in 1000 years’ time, but it will be the same message.
The challenge for each of us is how we can best communicate that message to those around us. You may have people beside you that you can chat to face to face. You may have family the other side of the world who would appreciate an email saying you are praying for them. You might even be a contributor to an online discussion or blog where you can tell others your Christian faith. The possibilities are endless.
Ask yourself, how am I communicating the message and am I making the most of all my opportunities?
HOLY WEEK SERVICES
Monday 14th April: 8.30am – Short morning worship
Easter Sunday – 20th April
starts with congregational breakfast at 9.30am then
Easter service with
Communion at 11am.
You are warmly invited to come to all or some of these.
Don’t resort to the DAZ doorstep challenge!
I’m writing this before heading out to college, as I’ve been doing an evening class in Counselling Skills. (Honestly, it’s more than just asking- how does that make you feel?!) As part of this, I’ve been practising my listening skills, which have been put to use as I’ve made a start on recording people for the Golden Age Project film. I’m looking for retired people to give me advice that they’d pass onto younger generations. I’d like to pass this wisdom on to the next generations, so that they can we learn from other’s mistakes and triumphs.
Although the world changes so fast with new technology I think some things stay the same: siblings will fight, make and keep new friends, people will develop crushes, and maybe fall in love, people die and are born, and people overcome challenges. People are people regardless of the gadgets they have!
However, technology can distract us from wisdom and granny’s tales that have been passed down through the years , and we can lose all these hints and tips. I had great fun visiting the Ladies’ Fellowship- where they filled me in on their proverbs!
- Your best pal’s a pound in the bank.
- Use what you’ve got and you’ll never want.
- A stitch in time saves 9
- A gang fit’s a’e gettin’
- Too many cooks spoil the broth
- Never let the sun go down on your wrath
What great sayings, which can roll off your tongue but actually contain really practical and valuable advice.
Friends are so valuable- especially in times of need. My grandparents would repair and reuse almost everything- long before recycling came into fashion- it was just ingrained into their way of life- looking after, and appreciating what they had. And my Grandpa was definitely a gang fit! He would go up to all sorts of strangers starting conversations with them; asking if he could have fruit from their trees to make wine- conversations that opened up new friendships and new opportunities!
I also asked a few questions of the Ladies’ Fellowship:
Q. What makes for good friendship?
A. Diplomacy, being honest, loyal and a good listener
Q. How can you know someone is a true friend?
A. You know you can rely on them, They are always there for you.
Q. What would be your advice to a younger person about romance?
A. Take time don’t be in a rush, get to know each other, respect.
Q. How do you keep the romance alive?
A. Chemistry- fun- appreciation of each other- enjoy each other’s company. Good marriages are worked on with respect for each other and doing things together.
So lots of incredible and valuable advice out there. I’m looking forward to getting it on film!
Please speak to me at church, or give me a call on 07974425369 if you’re interested in adding to my treasure trove!
(Please don’t make me resort to acting like the Daz doorstep challenge!!!! haha!)
The importance of nurture
It feels quite strange to look at the calendar and realise that on Palm Sunday (the 13th April) I will be half-way through my placement at Granton. While the past 7.5 months seem to have flown by, I also struggle to believe that I didn’t know any of you before last September. I must thank you again for the way you all continue to make me feel so very much at home in Granton!
Over the next few months, my particular focus as Probationary Minister is going to be on nurturing the congregation, as I temporarily fill the role of Convenor of the Nurture Group.
When you look at the Bible, you discover that nurturing, or growing, our faith and love in God is one of the most important things we do as a Church. For example, when the apostle Paul prayed for a group of Christians, this was how he prayed:
“I pray that your love will keep on growing more and more, together with true knowledge and perfect judgment, so that you will be able to choose what is best. Then you will be free from all impurity and blame on the Day of Christ. Your lives will be filled with the truly good qualities which only Jesus Christ can produce, for the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:9-11)
It is my hope that this is our prayer for one another in Granton too.
We all know that we have to put effort into friendships to make them work. We need to spend time with our friends. We need to speak to them and listen to them. Our friendship with God (and for that matter other people at Granton Church) is no different. Reading the Bible, praying, spending time with other Christians and sharing our faith is vital, if we want to get to know God more and to grow as Christians.
As temporary Convenor of the Nurture Group, I hope we provide you encouragement and support to grow your relationship with God. Whether you are a baby in crèche, a child in Kirk4Kids or Patch, someone who finds getting along to Church on a Sunday a struggle, someone who is at worship every week, or someone who’s a member of one of the groups using the Church during the week, I want every one of you to know that you matter to God, and to us, and that your relationship with God and others in the congregation matters too.
We have some ideas how we might encourage growth in our relationships with God (so watch this space!), but we know we don’t have all the ideas. If there’s something that you think would help you and others, let me, or someone else on the committee know. We’d be delighted to hear from you. Please also continue to pray for one another. We need one another.
With my love and prayers,
From Ian Moir
In recent issues of Kirk Outlook, I have described two of the important aspects of our meetings – Worship and Craft Work.
Another main part of our life is ‘Relationships’. The caring which is found among the families is quite amazing. Joys and sorrows are shared openly and meaningful friendships have developed over the years. We celebrate all the children’s birthdays with a birthday Cake and the usual songs. The caring extends beyond the parents to their children, who take a lead from the adults. The older children are very good at looking after and encouraging the younger members of the group, which includes a new baby at the moment.
Since the New Year we have followed ‘The Fruits of the Spirit’ illustrating each with a story Jesus told. During March we have worked our way through the stories of Easter.
Parents continue to tell the stories with the children working puppets or holding up the pictures. Marie Louise, our Storyteller comes once a month and provides the story and craft work.
New families are always welcome. Parents and children meet together and share all the activties.
We meet on Sundays from 11 – 12 noon in the West Hall.
From Malcolm Burton
The Brigade Bugle
19th Leith (Granton Parish Church) Company
This Session has gone very quickly, with a lot of activities already completed, but a busy spell still lies ahead in the run up to our Awards / Parent’s Night in May.
Junior Section Activities
The Junior Section have been busy with their weekly programme, however as our numbers are limited this means that we have not been able to take part in any of the Battalion Competitions, that said we have achieved a lot on our Wednesday nights.
The Boys’ have also attended the Battalions Joint Anchor & Junior Section Church Service at the end of March, which was held after a visit to Dynamic Earth.
Company Section Activities
While the company have not taken part in either of the Battalions (indoor & outdoor) Football Competitions, nor this sessions Cross Country around Holyrood Park.
The Company Section Christmas Games competitions proved to be highly competitve saw new Champions being crowned this year, in the Snooker, Pool and Table Tennis.
While we also held our own inaugural Computer Football competition.
The Company have also taken part in and won the Battalions Inaugural Computer Video Game “F.I.F.A. Football” competition, with a composite team & JJ Betts wining the “EUROPA” competition on his own.
Our Badge programme continues with the younger Boys working on the Discover Programme, Dylan Burgess obtaining the 2nd highest award in the Boys’ Brigade the “Presidents Badge” and our Seniors working towards their Duke of Edinburgh Awards.
Again this year we will unfortunately not be holding a Junior Section Camp due to a lack of numbers. We will be holding a Company Section Camp with a repeated visit to the Pilton Retreat in Ratho. However, the Boys’ WILL be getting wet this time around regardless of the weather, as they will be taking part in a Sailing taster session out on the Forth!
We have yet to decide if we will be holding a Company & Camp fundraiser before the end of this Session, if we do we will place details in the weekly bulletin.
This year’s Session will finish with our Parent’s Night on Wednesday 7th May.
O.I.C. Company Section
0131 – 552 – 3176
O.I.C. Junior Section
0131 – 467 – 4241
From Elizabeth Hansen
The Lunch Club ladies would like to thank customers for all their good wishes and gifts received at Christmas.
The Christmas lunch was, as usual, well attended and enjoyed by all. Our thanks once again go to all our staff and of course not forgetting our police team, Tony and Sarah, they did a grand job, also our home grown team, Norman (leader), Alasdair and Kirsty, and Malcolm, we could not do without them, well done to all.
We enjoyed our three weeks off and enjoyed a lunch, not cooked or served by us, at Guillianos during our time off.
We are now back into the swing of things…………when is the next break!!!!!!!……………and love seeing you all.
Many thanks for all your support, it’s lovely to see your smiling faces.. Please continue to support the church Lunch Club and the Ladies.
A devotional for Easter
It Is Finished
It was a Friday morning in Jerusalem and a massive crowd had gathered at Golgotha called “the place of the skull.” It was north of the city, just outside the Damascus Gate, by a well-
This particular crucifixion was unlike any before. Some called this man a prophet, while others said he was the King of Jews and, of course, some called him a blasphemer. It was about 9 a.m. and for the next three hours everything proceeded normally. When the sun was directly overhead, the sky went black, not overcast, but pitch black, so dark you couldn’t see your hand in front of your face. Darkness fell across the city of Jerusalem for three hours. There was screaming, moaning and a crying out of sounds never heard before.
Then, just as abruptly as it started, the darkness lifted and sanity returned to the earth. One glance and it was obvious that this man Jesus would not last much longer. The soldiers knew he wouldn’t make it to sundown. His body shook uncontrollably and his chest heaved with every tortured breath.
Then He shouted, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Still the crowd mocked him. Death was drawing near as the moments passed. He whispered, “I thirst.” The soldiers lifted a sponge on a stalk of hyssop dipped in sour vinegar to His lips. You could hear the gurgling of blood in his throat as he moistened his lips and took a deep breath. Then with a quick shout. He breathed out His final words before death, “It is finished.”
How does that final statement Jesus made from the cross affect you and me? Let me share some good news about this outstanding display of love filled with all compassion, all mercy and amazing grace. “It is finished” means the debt was paid, the work was accomplished, the sacrifice was completed. There was nothing more God could do to save mankind. When Jesus died, he died once for all time for the sins of every person who has ever lived, past, present and future.
Since Jesus paid our sin debt in full by His death on the cross. Nothing we do or will ever do can make the slightest difference in our salvation, forgiveness, justification, and full acceptance by God. Simply put. God isn’t trying to sell us salvation. He is offering it free of charge. The only thing left for us to do is accept it or reject it. There is no middle ground between these two propositions. When Jesus said, “It is finished,” he meant it.
“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (NLT)
Unless I put my finger into the wounds in his hands and my hand into his side I’ll not believe
But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.” A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.” Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.”
John 20: 24 – 29
St. Thomas is the patron saint of builders and many other causes but not as I heard it once suggested that he should be patron saint of journalists because he wanted the facts. Perhaps that is why he isn’t.
I’ve always had a problem with Thomas. He was the one who suggested that they should all go with Jesus to Jerusalem and die with him and yet he was also the one who wouldn’t believe the others when they told him that they had seen Jesus, complete with his wounds, after he had died..
‘Unless I put my finger into the wounds in his hands and my hand into his side I’ll not believe,’ he said.
Perhaps he’s a bit like me. I often want proof. When someone I trust implicitly tells me a favourite television programme has ended, I still like to see for myself. Or if that same person tells me it’s quicker to go to the supermarket by another route, I have to test it. I don’t believe straight away and have to check it out. If Thomas is called ‘doubting’, then so am I and so are so many of us who like to be independent.
What happened when Thomas got the proof? John doesn’t say that he actually touched Jesus’ wounds but on seeing Jesus and hearing him speak he fell to his knees saying. ‘My Lord and my God!’ If he hadn’t believed before, he certainly believed then.
Could Thomas have been portraying the rest of us? Those that came after Jesus had died, those of us who hadn’t even been born then? He wanted proof, he got it. Not only for himself but for all of us who weren’t around at that time. Those who came after, you and me. Was his test the exclamation mark to emphasise the fact that Jesus defeated death and promised the same for all of us?
And Jesus Statement, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.” Surely, that is meant for all of us. Thomas carried out the test, we don’t need to see the wounds. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe. That’s you and me, providing we believe.
Gloriously alive God,
If only I could see you! That would make all the difference –
Lord, receive and redeem my unbelief. Come to me as you came to those women on that first Easter Day, and then open my eyes –
I ask this through him who rose from the grave and defeated even death, Jesus Christ our Lord.