Our minister, the Rev’d Mark Lawrence led our worship last Sunday morning with the theme “You are the salt of the earth and the light of the world” taken from Matthew’s gospel, chapter five. Mark was warmly welcomed by Sue Fox; and he quoted from Psalm 119, the longest Psalm in the bible.
We began by singing a much-loved hymn by Frances Jane van Alstyne, “To God be the glory, great things he has done! So loved he the world he gave us his Son”, with Neil and Jill Barnett providing music on the organ and keyboard, following which Mark led us in a prayer of Praise and Thanksgiving. Jill read our first bible reading from Philippians, chapter two in which Paul urges the young church to Shine as Lights in the World. After prayers for others, particularly for the persecuted church in many parts of the world, Neil read our second reading from Matthew, chapter five, part of Christ’s Sermon on the Mount, in which he tells his followers they are like salt and light.
In his sermon, Mark gave an insight into the use by Jesus of salt and light in describing his aspirations for his disciples and followers, using salt and light to describe their journey in the Christian faith. Salt, because it has a cleansing effect and is a preservative. Light because we want people to see in Christians an illumination which can changed their lives for the good. “The call is that they may see Jesus in us”, said Mark. So the analogy of salt and light, with all their benefits are so used by Jesus in his Sermon on the Mount, his words being as relevant today as they were when they were delivered in biblical times.
We celebrated the sacrament of Holy Communion, with Jill Harrison assisting the minister to offer the bread and wine to all who took part.
After our final hymn and blessing we enjoyed the fellowship of tea and biscuits before we came together again for our Annual General Church Meeting during which we stood in silent remembrance for those of our number who have died since our previous annual meeting and made plans to serve the church during the coming year.