Mr Robin Perry from Market Drayton led our morning service last Sunday. Robin was welcomed by steward Keith Harrison. We opened with a call to worship by reading Psalm 100 together. This is a short but joyful Psalm “O shout to the Lord in triumph all the earth: serve the Lord with gladness and come before his face with songs of joy”. To the accompaniment of Rod Smith on the organ we sang the opening hymn “Praise my soul the King of heaven” followed by prayers of thanksgiving and confession.

Norma Buckley and Bunty Hodgkins read our morning’s bible reading. This was taken from the first book of Kings, chapter 19. It was the story of the prophet Elijah, of the wind, the earthquake, the fire as he escaped the wrath of Jezebel the wife of King Ahab, and of the still small voice of God who spoke to him in the wilderness.

In his sermon, Robin gave the background of the Old Testament reading from 1 Kings. He explained that King Ahab was the eighth king of Israel and he and his wife Jezebel were both evil people. Elijah fled for his life from both of them and in the still small voice he had a profound experience of God’s power. Yet tempted to forget the power of God, he was reminded that he was not alone and that God had covenanted with him that God’s light will never be extinguished. Elijah had a journey of forty days in the wilderness and Robin asked us if we have the strength to make such a journey, as God wants us on a journey which leads to Jesus. How do we get the strength? It was Jesus who said “I am the bread of life” and Jesus will give us strength for the journey.

In our prayers for others, special prayers were said for those who have lost lives, loved ones and possessions in the earthquake in Turkey and Syria, the sufferers in the war in

Ukraine and those known to us in need of prayers at this difficult time and a retiring collection was taken for the earthquake appeal for ‘Open Doors’ Syria & Turkey.