13th June 2021-Anniversary at Canvey Methodist Church Worship Services

Canvey Methodist Church 71st Anniversary Service - 13th June 2021

Theme: Looking out for and watering God’s Green Shoots of new life.


 

Readings:   Ezekiel 17:22-24; Psalm 92: 1-4, 12-15; 2Corinthians 5:6-10; Mark 4:26-34;

 

1)Notices and Welcome,

2)Call To Worship

Psalm 92:1-4, 12-15; New International Version (NIV)-A song. For the Sabbath day.

 

1 It is good to praise the Lord

    and make music to your name, O Most High,

2 proclaiming your love in the morning

    and your faithfulness at night,

3 to the music of the ten-stringed lyre

    and the melody of the harp.

4 For you make me glad by your deeds, Lord;

    I sing for joy at what your hands have done.

12 The righteous will flourish like a palm tree,

    they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon;

 

13 planted in the house of the Lord,

    they will flourish in the courts of our God.

14 They will still bear fruit in old age,

    they will stay fresh and green,

15 proclaiming, “The Lord is upright;

    he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him.”

 

3)Hymn: StF17. With gladness we worship rejoice as we sing

https://youtu.be/705eMUhoGs8

 

With gladness we worship, rejoice as we sing,

Free hearts and free voices, how blessed to bring!

The old thankful story shall seek Thine abode,

Thou King of all glory, most bountiful God!l

 

Thy right would we give Thee, true homage Thy due,

And honor eternal, the universe through:

With all Thy creation, earth, heaven and sea,

In one acclamation we celebrate Thee.

 

Renewed by Thy Spirit, redeemed by Thy Son,

Thy children revere Thee for all Thou hast done:

O Father, returning to love and to light,

Thy children are yearning to praise Thee aright.

 

We join with the angels, and so there is giv’n,

From earth, Alleluia, in answer to Heav’n.

Amen! Be Thou glorious below and above,

Redeeming, victorious, and infinite Love!


 

4)Opening Prayers and Lords Prayer

 

Almighty God, Creator of all, we praise and adore you for planting us all in the house of the Lord, that we might flourish and grow well, bearing spiritual fruit. Praise you for your wonderful promise that by your Holy Spirit’s careful tending and nurture, we will stay fresh and green even into old age as we serve and flourish in the courts of our God.

We bring to you all that is growing within us, for you to bless and nurture, we bring to you our prayers for the spread of your kingdom, the hopes and dreams of all your children around the world, all for you to bless and nurture dear Lord. We ask you to give us eyes to notice where the seeds of your kingdom are growing here in our neighbourhoods and confidence and faith to play our part in nurturing and encouraging the growth to the reaping and the delights of harvest time.

Lord forgive us when we want to hurry things up and find that we are getting ahead of your creative planting and watering and tending.

Forgive us Lord when, as other opportunities present themselves, we choose to put our spiritual hoes and trowels away and leave the work of tending the new green shoots of your kingdom life to others.

In penitence we turn to you afresh for your cleansing, thanking you for the forgiveness that is ours through the death and resurrection of our saviour, Jesus Christ. He gave his all so that we wouldn’t have to. Please fill us with your Holy Spirit and open our eyes to the fruitful service you are leading each of us into this coming week. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.

The Lord's Prayer.

 

Our Father, which 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 them that 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.


 

5)OT Reading - Ezekiel 17:22-24 New International Version (NIV)

 

22 “‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I myself will take a shoot from the very top of a cedar and plant it; I will break off a tender sprigg from its topmost shoots and plant it on a high and lofty mountain. 23 On the mountain heights of Israel I will plant it; it will produce branches and bear fruit and become a splendid cedar. Birds of every kind will nest in it; they will find shelter in the shade of its branches. 24 All the trees of the forest will know that I the Lord bring down the tall tree and make the low tree grow tall. I dry up the green tree and make the dry tree flourish.

“‘I the Lord have spoken, and I will do it.’”

 

 

6) Gospel Reading:  Mark 4:26-34 New International Version (NIV)

 

The Parable of the Growing Seed

26 He also said, “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. 27 Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how. 28 All by itself the soil produces grain—first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head. 29 As soon as the grain is ripe, he puts the sickle to it, because the harvest has come.”

 

The Parable of the Mustard Seed

30 Again he said, “What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it? 31 It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth. 32 Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.”

 

33 With many similar parables Jesus spoke the word to them, as much as they could understand. 34 He did not say anything to them without using a parable. But when he was alone with his own disciples, he explained everything.

 

7) Hymn: StF254.Seek ye first the kingdom of God

https://youtu.be/MAqSD7XIkPc

 

Seek ye first the kingdom of God

And His righteousness

And all these things shall be added unto you

Allelu, alleluia

 

Ask and it shall be given unto you

Seek and ye shall find

Knock and the door shall be opened unto you

Allelu, alleluia

 

We shall not live by bread alone

But by every word

That proceeds from the mouth of God

Allelu, alleluia


 

8).Sermon.  

This year, as we have heard, marks the 71st year of the existence of this Methodist Church Society here on Canvey Island. As I was thinking how best to address this anniversary theme of today’s service I was reminded of Sir Issac Newton’s use of the phrase when he said “If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants." We are all here in a church that has made progress across the years because of the efforts of those who have gone before. For the few of us who were around in the early years of the life of the church the faces of those early church planters can still be brought to mind. People like Chris and Doris Watts, who donated the wall clock in memory of their Son, Mr and Mrs Steven’s who donated the baptismal font in thanksgiving of the rescue of their Granddaughter Linda from the 1953 flood on Canvey, and finally Len Knapp, our first church organist and handyman who described the formation of the Canvey church in his pamphlet “The first 25 years”. Here is his description of the first Methodist Service on Canvey.

“The first thing most people on Canvey knew of the start of the church was seeing posters put up in shop Windows advertising the first service on Sunday 1st October 1950 to be held in the upstairs room of Nightingales Cafe, Long Road”. (This is now a cafe again and is opposite the co-op at Jones Corner.)

Len continues, “ I went along at 6.30 pm quite a crowd there; chairs had been put in rows with a table at the front and the service was conducted by the Rev John Stacy, an energetic man who lived near the Bull Pub in Pitsea and who used to cycle to his churches in Pitsea, Canvey, Thundersley Benfleet and latterly to the Basildon Church he also started”. Wow!

Would these pioneers have considered themselves to be “giants”? No. They were ordinary church members like you and I doing their bit to serve Jesus as best they could.

 

It is perhaps easy to glamorise or to be intimidated by the past successes of others but to do so is, I think, to ignore the part that God had played in the process. The progress of this Methodist Society has always been gradual, some might even say slow. There have been many steps forward but also some steps back over the years; In other words just like with other aspects of normal life! But through it all, the gospel has been proclaimed, lives have been changed and Almighty God has been worshipped.

It is relevant therefore that the Bible readings today are all about new life and about hope; How green cedar tree shoots were transplanted and how small mustard seeds were planted, all to grow tall in unexpected places or ways.

Jesus spoke a lot about the kingdom of God and how it grows, starting off small and growing into something great.  “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed”, said Jesus, “nothing will be impossible for you”.

 

 

When Ezekiel wrote his encouraging prophecy it was just after the inhabitants of Israel were exiled to Babylon, and with the imminent prospect of the Temple in the surviving southern kingdom of Judah being destroyed by invading armies.

“But”, said Ezekiel, if a grand tree falls, Yahweh has the power to cause a new tree to grow”. Yes, Nebuchadnezzar will raze the temple to the ground, but that will not be the end.  Yahweh will see to it that the temple is established once again on the holy mountain.  The people of God will worship Yahweh there once again.

 

We are about to hear government announcements regarding the next stage along the pathway out of Covid pandemic restrictions back to a more normal way of life. 

The temple of our past lives and way of living feels as though it has been knocked down and that maybe things will never be the same. 

Well they may never be the same, but here’s God’s word to you and I, when we put his kingdom first all the things we need will be given us.

This applies to the church fellowship here in Waarden Road. Things, at times, may seem bleak, but this is God’s green-shoot and, as we are faithful, He will bring about new growth. Amen.

 

 

https://dcxne7jg10j3s.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/cms/n/nightingales.jpg


 

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/--BgFbpmTLz0/VnG_xDg8xwI/AAAAAAAAEvI/yJ48pncaUNU/s1600/Mustard_Seed.jpg


 

9).Hymn Stf410: Lord your church on earth is seeking.

https://youtu.be/GnYUfhtz11Q

 

Lord, your Church on Earth is Seeking

Your renewal from above;

Teach us all the art of speaking

With the accent of your love.

We would heed your great commission;

Sending us to every place;

Preach, baptize, fulfill My mission, 

Serve with love and share My grace.”

 

Freedom give to those in bondage, 

Lift the burdens caused by sin;

Give new hope, new strength and courage, 

Grant release from fears within.

Light for darkness, joy for sorrow; 

Love for hatred, peace for strife.

These and countless blessings follow 

As the Spirit gives new life.

 

In the streets of every city

Where the bruised and lonely dwell,

We shall show the Savior’s pity, 

Let us of His mercy tell.

In all lands and with all races

Let us serve and seek to bring

All the world to render praises, 

Christ, to Thee, Redeemer, King.

 

10).Prayers for others.        Annette

Intercessions – 13.06.21

Almighty God, Creator God and Dear Loving Heavenly Father we bring our prayers to You on this day when we are celebrating the 71st Anniversary of the first meeting of the Methodist Society on Canvey Island.  We thank you for the people who were so on fire with their love for God and ablaze with their passion for Jesus that they felt moved by Your Spirit and their fondness for the people of this Island to commit to gradually building this church so that they and the future people of this area could come to Worship in the Methodist way.  For this we are so very grateful and come to commit ourselves also to Your work and service in this place in the time to come.

Lord of the years that have gone we give You thanks for our memories.  We praise You for those who words and deeds led us to the foot of the cross where we met Our Saviour and to the empty tomb where we received Him as Lord.  Lord of the Years to come, we seek Your Guiding Hand.  We long for our faith to grow, our trust to deepen and our knowledge of You and Your greatness to be the source of our hope for all our tomorrows.

At this present time we have our concerns for many things which we do not know how to face up to so we bring them to You.  We know that You have the wisdom to guide us through and we put our trust in You.

This weekend we are very aware that the G7 Summit is meeting in Carbis Bay in Cornwall. This Summit is being held in this country because our Prime Minister holds the Presidency of the G7 at the moment. The other countries involved are Canada, France. Germany, Italy, Japan, U.K., U.S.A. and E.U with Australia, South Africa and South Korea attending as guests.  India has declined to attend.  Reading between the lines it is not possible for Russia to be invited because they are too disruptive.  How sorry we are that there is so much discord in this world.  You gave us Your wonderful creation and we are still not able to accept Your Gifts without spending much of our time quarrelling and wanting more than our fair share.  Forgive us Lord and help us to be more grateful for all You have done for us.

One topic the Summit will consult on will be the Covid 19 pandemic. We wonder how they will seek to take control of this virus throughout the world.  They will consider the sharing of the vaccines and medications between the richer and poorer countries.  Please guide this consideration as it will be important in our managing Covid 19 in the future.

Another desperate consideration will be Climate Change.  We have known for some time that the selfish ways we use the world’s resources are causing great damage to this beautiful world.  Please may the leaders be guided wisely on ways to improve this situation.  Even if we all cleared up all our rubbish it would make a great difference to the damage being done.  Guide us all to act wisely.  We owe it to our young people to leave this world more worthy of You. 

Many other things will be discussed mainly on financial concerns.  We pray they will make wise decisions guided by You, Dear Lord.

We pray that the disagreements over the Northern Irish border can be sorted out amicably between U.K., U.S.A and the E.U.

We pray that the many disputes and wars taking place in the world at the moment may be brought to an end.  If only we could take on Your desire for us all to accept the sacrifice of Your Dear Son and the forgiveness of our sins.

Dear Lord we pray for this fellowship and all our famiies and friends.  For those who are facing up to trials and difficulties.  We pray for them whatever they are having to deal with at the moment that you will listen to their prayers and answer as You know to be right.

We pray for the many people who have asked our church for our prayers because they are having to face up to cancer.  Give them the strength to cope with the treatment, the peace to accept the diagnosis and the joy of acknowledging that You are walking with them all the way.  Our thoughts are particularly with the 2 young mothers in this situation.  Please give them hope for the future.  We remember Brenda and thank you that we hear she is on the road to recovery.  Comfort all of her family as they continue to wait for Brian’s operation.

We bring to You the many people with a variety of others illnesses whose treatment was delayed because the hospitals were too full to treat them.  May the delay in their treatment not have been too much to their disadvantage.

We are all very fond of Sarah and Eddie’s son, Dottie’s brother, Rufus and pray that his operation will be successful.  Please bless all the family.  We are so glad that Anna has arrived home safely for Rebecca’s wedding and pray that she has a very blessed time.

We thank You Dear Lord for all the keyworkers, hospital staff, emergency services and all who have worked so hard in recent months and we pray for a time of refreshment in the not too distant future for them all.

We pray for the two families in our fellowship who are looking forward to the marriages of daughters in the near future.  Please bless the couples’ futures with happiness and a knowledge of your closeness at all times.

Finally we pray for the church here.  We thank Colin and Cathy for all their hard work and thank everyone who helps in any way to further Our Lord’s work in this place.  We pray that we may all serve You well, Dear Lord.

We ask our prayers in the name of our Dear Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, Your Beloved Son.

Amen.

 

11).Communion

12).Hymn: StF59. Lord the light of your love is shining.

https://youtu.be/rce9UHYZwl4

 

Lord, the light of your love is shining,

In the midst of the darkness, shining;

Jesus, light of the world, shine upon us;

Set us free by the truth you now bring us,

Shine on me, shine on me.

 

Shine, Jesus, shine,

Fill this land with the Father's glory;

Blaze, Spirit, blaze,

Set our hearts on fire.

Flow, river, flow,

Flood the nations with grace and mercy;

Send forth your word,

Lord, and let there be light!

 

Lord, I come to your awesome presence,

From the shadows into your radiance;

By the blood I may enter your brightness,

Search me, try me, consume all my darkness.

Shine on me, shine on me.

 

Shine, Jesus, shine,

Fill this land with the Father's glory;

Blaze, Spirit, blaze,

Set our hearts on fire.

Flow, river, flow,

Flood the nations with grace and mercy;

Send forth your word,

Lord, and let there be light!

 

As we gaze on your kingly brightness

So our faces display your likeness.

Ever changing from glory to glory,

Mirrored here may our lives tell your story.

Shine on me, shine on me.

 

Shine, Jesus, shine,

Fill this land with the Father's glory;

Blaze, Spirit, blaze,

Set our hearts on fire.

Flow, river, flow,

Flood the nations with grace and mercy;

Send forth your word,

Lord, and let there be light!

 

13) Prayer and Benediction.