APC 14th April 2021 ‘Sharing the Good News’
Good morning everyone and welcome back to our Wednesday reflections. I want to begin by thanking our Moderator the Rev David Bruce for his wonderfully hopeful and thoughtful service on Sunday. It was not only a blessing to be able to take a break from my usual preparations last week but we were truly encouraged as we sat and watched his service at our kitchen table. Reflecting on it afterwards, one of the things that Emma and I loved was how David reminded us that sharing the good news about Jesus doesn’t have to be complicated. It’s simply about getting alongside people naturally as we go about our daily activities and when the conversation arises sharing with them what Jesus means to us.
Following on from that, I thought today it would be appropriate to share with you another reflection recorded by a former Moderator who is much loved and well known by us all. The Rev Frank Sellar was minister of Adelaide Road church for many years after which God called him to minister in Bloomfield Presbyterian Church in Belfast. Frank is also the Convenor to the Council of Mission for Ireland. This is the branch of our denomination particularly focused on resourcing churches for outreach in Ireland.
But just before Frank comes to share a reflection with us, sit back, as the Rev Jim Stothers gives us an insight into some of the work that the Council for Mission in Ireland currently supports, including our own here in Arklow. Jim is deputising for Rev David Bruce during his year as Moderator.
(End Part 1)
VIDEO Work of the CMI Rev Jim Stothers
We are so grateful to everyone in Ireland who contributes to our Denomination’s ‘United Appeal’ every year. It is this financial stream that allows all of the work that you have heard about and so much more to continue to happen. As important as it is for us to financially support the work of full time outreach workers, it’s equally important for us to remember that it’s not just ministers, Irish mission workers, deaconesses and chaplains who are missionaries. You are an outreach worker too!
Sit back then, as our former Moderator and friend, Frank Sellar, reminds us of this truth and encourages us not to be afraid to share the good news that we have received.
(End Part 2)
VIDEO Sharing the Good News Rev Frank Sellar
Our thanks to Frank for his challenging words. Our thanks to Helen for reading a difficult passage so well and it was also lovely for me to see Jonathan Rea and his two boys leading us in worship. Jonathan used to teach music right above me when I taught Biology in Bangor Grammar School many moons ago.
Unfortunately I’ve no firm confirmation either from government or our own denomination about when we can return to church services but I’m hoping that it will not be too long now if the numbers of Covid infections continue to fall. As soon as I know, I will let you know.
Please do continue to pray especially for all Fr Padraig as he continues to recover in hospital and for all others currently who are ill or who have ben bereaved. Do also remember our young people and young adults especially those for whom this year will be an important exam year.
In a moment I will close with a benediction after which we will share the grace together. But before I do, let me encourage you to reflect on the truth that God is calling you to share the good news with the people you rub shoulders with everyday…Who are those people? How might God be asking you to share the good news with them?...
Go now and proclaim the good news not just through words, but deeds – through what you say, what you do and who you are. May others, as they meet with you, meet with Christ and know His living presence for themselves. And
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirt be with us all now and for ever more, Amen.
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