Worship & Services
We usually gather together for worship on Sundays at 10.30am. Our services are led by our minister or local preachers from across the circuit, or by invited guests.
Following the recommendations not to gather due to COVID-19, we are currently working out how best to provide alternative worship provision. Weekly resources, including orders of worship and live-streamed services, are available directly from the Methodist Church. National Forest East Circuit resources from our minister, Revd Sally Ratcliffe, including a live-streamed Sunday service are also available via the Melbourne Methodist Church Website.
Occasional resources will be added by our leaders of worship and preaching, as circumstances allow. Please check back for updates.
Mothering Sunday, 22 March 2020
Worship at Home Resources, prepared by Jo Henderson-Merrygold.
You may wish to light a candle, hold or look at a cross, or spend a few moments either outside or looking outside to focus on God.
Gathering for Worship
Patient, eternal God,
whose love reaches out,
drawing us into faith and fellowship,
across time and distance,
across isolation and gathering,
across the generations
you call me into your community.
Come, share, bring your Spirit’s presence.
Be with me in this worship, I pray. Amen.
Feel free to read the words or sing along as you are most comfortable.
You love each one of us into being,
calling into creation and bringing us forth.
You nurture and strengthen us
and all your creation.
I see you amongst your children,
your world, your wonder
and delight in all that is good.
You love us into relationship with one another,
friends and family, past, present and future; chosen and unchosen, given and received
And I give thanks that your love holds each of us in communion with you.
God our loving mother,
our eternal parent,
I cry out to you.
I am sorry for what I have done that I should not have;
for what I have not, that I could have.
Help me when I struggle or feel overwhelmed;
when I do not know what to do or say.
Help me to know you are with me at all times
holding me safely, securely, lovingly
feeling my joys and sorrows,
forgiving my sins,
and loving me once again
into new life and new hope.
In Jesus name, I pray.
On Mothering Sunday, we encounter a God who holds us securely, and guides us in all that we do and say for God’s glory. We see God carefully, wisely and compassionately parenting – mothering – Samuel, Jesse and David as well as the early church. There is the reassurance of the Spirit’s presence, even in times of uncertainty, loving and caring for us.
In 1 Samuel 16, we find an uncertain Samuel, trying to work out what to do. God says to him, ‘I will show you what you shall do’ (v.3). Our teaching from Ephesians 5 encourages us to ‘Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord’ (v.10) so that we may find the Light of God and ourselves within it. We hear that: ‘the fruit of the light is found in all that is good and right and true’ (v.9).
Look back over the week and consider where you can see the light of God reaching out to and through you. It may be through good news, signs of fellowship and community, love of family and friends, glimpses of hope and joy around you, or new life emerging in the flowers of spring bulbs, tree shoots or new lambs. Give thanks to God for the signs of light and life around you.
Consider the day and week ahead and ask God to show us what is pleasing and good, and to reveal what we should each do. Ask the guidance of the Spirit to come to you and strengthen you.
Entrust your worries and concerns to God who, through Christ, came amongst us and experienced the turbulence of human life. Place you worries on Jesus, who invited us to take his yoke. Take them to the Mothering God who holds us securely in our uncertainty and who, through the promise of the spirit, offers grace, hope and the promise of the resurrection.
Bring me into your loving embrace.
Shine your light of hope and reach out to
all facing insecurity and worries,
those who are unwell and seek your healing.
Reach out to those affected by isolation and distancing
bring your light to my family and friends, my church community.
Bring your hope and light and life that we may know the joy of Christ shining on us.
Be with me, guide and strengthen me today and in the coming days.
This I pray in the name of God – three in one.
Song: The Lord's My Shepherd
PDF also available.