Please refer to the new “Online Services” page on the Menu for details about all of the Online Services, and other regular activities in the Circuit.
The YouTube channel for Colchester Methodists continues to have videos uploaded regularly. If you follow this link, it will take you there: https://www.youtube.com/ColchesterMethodists
The service for this Sunday can be found by using this shortcut link.
You can find Bible Stories and Activities for Young People on the Young Sunday page of the Circuit Website, or by following this shortcut link.
When you leave a church service would you usually shake the hand of the Minister and thank him for the service? If so, please encourage our ministers and the team, by clicking on the Thumbs Up / LIKE icon for the video. This also helps our videos to be promoted to others, and spreads the word of God.
You can also leave a brief message in the comments below each video, but PLEASE don’t forget that literally EVERYONE worldwide can see this, so don’t make any personal comments, or refer to people in a way that risks their privacy in any way.
Don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE to the You Tube channel. It is FREE. Also click on the NOTIFICATION BELL ICON, then choose “all” as an option to receive an email notification / link each time a new video is uploaded. You can unsubscribe at any time, by clicking on the Subscribe button a second time.
Sunday 16 May 2021
During this latest Lockdown, the Government has not banned churches from opening for Worship, however, most have decided that it is not safe or wise to open at the present time. With the easing of some lockdown restrictions our churches are beginning to think about in person Worship again.
Re-opening Churches for Worship
A Circuit Plan is currently being drafted for the coming months. This will include online and in-person services at our churches, and will be made available on our Downloads page.
We have dates when several Circuit churches are hoping to reopen for in person worship:-
Wimpole Road and Mersea opened for in-person worship on 18 04 2021
Castle will open on Pentecost Sunday/Aldersgate Sunday 23 05 2021
The Ark will open on 27 06 2021
The Well will open on 04 07 2021
Wivenhoe, Lexden and Tollgate have yet to confirm when they intend to reopen.
All dates above are assuming the Government Roadmap out of Covid Restrictions is followed as anticipated.
We will continue to upload content to YouTube every Sunday until all of our churches have resumed in-person worship. We will then review what online activities should continue, and your comments would be welcome.
We hope to be experimenting with Live-Streaming the 10:30am Pentecost Sunday Service from Castle. It should be available on Castle’s YouTube Channel here. To join this service live from home, please Subscribe to that channel (and click the Notification Bell icon) to be notified when this service is about to go live.
Taking Stock is now back, with a new video on YouTube every week – usually on Wednesdays.
We now have Zoom evening services for the whole Circuit on most Sunday evenings, hosted by various Churches. Your local email Hub Co-ordinator will send you an email with a link to join these. (If you haven’t received an email please contact one of your church stewards).
Your local Methodist Church website will give more details about groups and activities which are taking place there – click on that Church in the Menu on the Circuit Website.
Please continue to remember all of our Circuit Ministers and Lay Preachers in your prayers.
Rev Ken Chalmers is still not back to full time working. Rev Joe Adams is currently unwell, and unable to carry out his usual duties for a while. Any pastoral concerns should be directed to our Superintendent Rev Alan Jenkins by email or telephone. Please pray for Joe, but do not contact him at this time.
Remember in your prayers folk from across the circuit who are suffering from various health problems at this time, any members and friends who have recently tested positive for Covid-19, and those known to us who are NHS or other keyworkers.
Zoom Bible Study Groups:
Alan’s bible study sessions for Castle will be on the last Wednesday of each month. Our next session will be looking at Psalms. The Zoom meeting will open at 7.15pm for informal chat with Bible Study commencing at 7.30pm.
Ken’s bible study sessions for The Ark are weekly on Tuesday’s. The Zoom meeting will open at 7.15pm for informal chat with Bible Study commencing at 7.30pm. We have a short break after our four week study of the Gospel of Mark, and will recommence soon. If you would like to join in this study please send an email to email@example.com .
All are welcome to join the Bible Study Groups above, but let Alan or The Ark know you are interested, so that he can send you details and a Zoom invite.
Details of Bible studies and other activities based at Wimpole Road are available on their website here.
Zoom Church Services:
(Zoom Services will “open” 15 minutes before the start time to allow everyone to join and settle in before beginning Worship together).
Invitation from The Ark:
We will be hosting a monthly service on Zoom at 6.30pm on the FIRST Sunday of each month, and a mid-week morning Reflections Service on Zoom on the SECOND Wednesday of each month. Anyone from the circuit wishing to join either of these is very much welcome to do so, but you will first need to email firstname.lastname@example.org for a Zoom invite.
Invitation from Wivenhoe:
We will be hosting a monthly service on Zoom at 3pm on the SECOND Sunday of each month. Anyone from the circuit wishing to join is very much welcome to do so, but you will first need to email Alan for a Zoom invite.
Invitation from Castle:
We will be hosting a monthly service on Zoom at 6.30pm on the THIRD Sunday of each month. Anyone from the circuit wishing to join is very much welcome to do so, but you will first need to email Alan for a Zoom invite.
Invitation from Wimpole Road:
We will be hosting a monthly service on Zoom at 6.30pm on the FOURTH Sunday of each month. Anyone from the circuit wishing to join is very much welcome to do so, but you will first need to email Joe for a Zoom invite.
Men’s Breakfast Group
This group was meeting at The Ark, and just finding its feet when Covid changed all of our lives. There is now time to consider the future. The group was started simply to offer a meeting place, food and chat – about life and church life – for men from within the Circuit, once a month. While considering when and how to resume some questions have been posed, and your thoughts would be welcome.
- Should the meetings be more formal – including perhaps a speaker talking about a special interest.
- Should the meetings be more church focussed – perhaps including a Bible Study session.
- Should the meetings be more community focussed – perhaps addressing a particular local need.
Whether you have been involved previously or not, your thoughts would be welcomed. Please email email@example.com with any comments.
Christian Aid News
In India, a second wave of Covid is having a devastating impact. Cases are rising at an alarming rate, with more than 350,000 new cases in just 24 hours, according to Reuters. More than 200,000 lives have been lost to the pandemic in India. Across the country, hospitals are overrun and oxygen supplies are falling short of demand.
Please stand with us and pray for our sisters and brothers in India.
- Pray for strength and courage for our sisters and brothers in India, in the most marginalised communities, to claim the support they are entitled to.
- Pray for healthcare workers who risk their lives each day to heal and care for the sick with supplies that are running out, that they receive the medicines and equipment they need to give vital treatment.
- Pray for Christian Aid’s partners, that their messages of protection may reach and help the most vulnerable people.
- Pray for people across the world who rely on precarious work, that they may be sustained and not lose hope in times of scarcity.
Pray for India
I will say of the Lord,
‘You are my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust’.
God of power and might we lift our brothers and sisters in India to you.
We pray for your protection,
We pray for your provision,
We pray for the nations of earth to have compassion.
When people are in need, you are our refuge.
When people are scared, you are our refuge.
When people are mourning, you are our refuge.
Compassionate God, draw close to those who seek your refuge today.
Christian Aid are members of the Disasters Emergency Committee, who describe their role in this way:
When large-scale disasters hit countries without the capacity to respond, the DEC brings together 14 leading UK aid charities to raise funds quickly and efficiently.
In these times of crisis, people in life-and-death situations need our help and our mission is to save, protect and rebuild lives through effective humanitarian response.
Pooling our resources to work as one, we are pivotal in co-ordinating the UK public’s response to overseas disasters. In collaboration with our Rapid Response Network of national media and corporate partners, we raise the alarm to the UK public and set up easy ways to donate.
And we have immediate impact, getting aid to people who need it, fast.
If you feel that you can contribute to the appeal for help in this crisis in India please follow this link to donate through Christian Aid: Christian Aid Donation page Christian Aid Week begins on 10th May, but please, if you can contribute, don’t wait. Help is needed now.
News from Cantus Firmus
Cantus Firmus is planning several events in Essex during 2021. Now that the Covid situation is improving and the Government’s ‘road-map’ is still on track, we can start to firm up several of these.
We told you that two churches had invited us to lead Taizé-style services: St Stephen’s in Colchester and St Luke’s in Tiptree. The service at St Stephen’s was originally planned for May 16th, but after discussion with leaders at St Stephen’s that service has been postponed to September 26th because of the current Government restrictions on indoor congregational singing: sung worship by both the choir and the congregation is an important part of a Taizé service.
Now that restrictions are easing, particularly after June 21st, we are actively planning the service at St Luke’s in Tiptree on Sunday July 11th at 6.30pm, and we invite you to join us for what should be our first in-person event for 2021! Whether you have experienced a Taizé service before, or if it is new to you, do come and sing with us – liturgy, new songs and music, candles and silence, using the theme ‘Ora et Labora’. This is the essence of the Rule of St Benedict: ‘Pray and Work’ – and July 11th is his feast day.
St Luke’s is a new venue for us, and the congregation there are looking forward to taking part in a Taizé-style service of worship. Our conductor will be Norman Eastbrook, who normally conducts the church choir at St Luke’s.
Rehearsals are planned for:
Monday July 5th, 7.30pm at a venue in Colchester to be confirmed;
Friday July 9th 7.30pm at St Luke’s Church;
On the day (July 11th) at 3.30pm at St Luke’s Church, followed by tea before the service.
Nearer the time, registration can be done on the Cantus Firmus website, but to help with our planning it would be helpful to know the approximate number of singers, so if you would like to take part, or are considering it, please reply to this email to let me know. As usual, we will invite a donation to cover costs. And if you wish to come to be part of the congregation, you would be very welcome to do that.
The Colchester Methodist Circuit is looking to appoint a part-time Circuit Administrator. If you, or someone you know, would be interested in this part time work, click here to find out more details about the Circuit Administrator Job Vacancy.
Audio CD’s, and DVD’s, are being made available to anyone unable to view the online service. If you know of someone who would benefit from this please let a Minister or pastoral leader know.
For more information about these activities, or to tell us about your news from around the circuit for inclusion next time, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Be sure to keep yourselves safe and well.
Let someone know if you are struggling, if you need a chat, or just some shopping. Do contact your pastoral leader, or send someone an email: you may be in isolation, but you are not alone.