Bulletin – 31st March

Diary

Services Today

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John Norman Macdonald

6:00pm @ Kyleakin Village Hall – Joint District Communion

Mid-week Meetings & Events

Tuesday, 12-2:00pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Mustard Seed Cafe

Wednesday, 7:00pm @ Sleat – Monthly Prayer Meeting

Next Sunday

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – D.J. Stewart (Elder, Kyle Free Church)

5:00pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Evening Worship – S. Mackinnon (Elder, Grace Community Church, Kyle)

Notices

Broadford Manse “Deep Clean”

Thanks to everyone who came along to help give the Broadford Manse a good clean.   It’s looking a lot better now.

Minister Away

Gordon is on leave for about 10 days.   The morning service next Lord’s Day will be conducted by, DJ Stewart (morning) Stuart MacKinnon (evening).   In the event of any pastoral emergencies, please contact the elders in the first instance.

Joint District Communion

The service this evening will be a joint district communion service at 6:00pm in the Kyleakin Village Hall.   Ben Johnstone will be preaching.

Bible Study Books

The study books for our mid-week Bible Study on Nehemiah are available at the door.   Please put an extra £4 in the collection plate to cover the cost of these.

Next Sunday Evening

Please note the service next Sunday evening will be in the club room at the back of the stage in Broadford Village Hall.   This is because a group from Durham University are using the rest of the building as a base for a field trip.

Food Bank Meeting

There will be a meeting on Thursday 18th April for Christians locally interested in setting up a Food Bank for South Skye and Lochalsh.   This will be at the Lighthouse Centre in Kyle at 7:30pm.   Representatives from Blythswood will be present.   Please give this your prayerful attention in the coming weeks, as interest and commitment shown at this meeting will determine whether or not we go ahead with operating a food bank in the community.

Ben & Annette’s “Leaving Do”

A celebration of the ministry of Ben and Annette Johnstone is planned for Monday 29th April, at 7:00pm in the Kyleakin Village Hall.   A general invitation has been extended to our congregation. I’m sure we will want to join in showing our appreciation for Ben’s ministry, as we enjoy such good fellowship with the local Church of Scotland congregation.   Ann and Fay do need an indication of numbers for planning, so if you would like to attend, please contact them on 822 300 (Ann) or 822 907 (Fay).

Denominational News

Moderator’s Easter message

Free Church Moderator Rev Dr Iain D Campbell has said that Christians should be “the agents of the resurrection that God calls us to be”, citing the need to love our neighbour and remember the poor. In an Easter-themed meditation Dr Campbell said: “Any doctrine of the resurrection which leaves us gorging on chocolate eggs but not feeding the hungry is not worthy of the name.” His whole address will appear on the Free Church website http://www.freechurch.org/ from Friday 29 March.

Moderator writes to new Archbishop of Canterbury

The Moderator of the Free Church of Scotland has written to the new Archbishop of Canterbury conveying his prayerful good wishes in his new role. Rev Dr Iain D Campbell, minister of Point Free Church on the Isle of Lewis, said he hoped God would use Rev Justin Welby to “bring the Church of England back to its evangelical roots”.

Youth camps fundraising continues

Two Free Church of Scotland congregations are fundraising so that some of their local children can attend the summer camps programme. The Poolewe and Aultbea congregation in Wester Ross are hosting a car wash and serving afternoon tea from 2-4pm in the Aultbea church hall this weekend. Knock Free Church on the Isle of Lewis is also holding a special collection at its Sunday services.

April edition of The Record out now

One of the Professors at the Free Church College in Edinburgh has agreed that the embracing of tithing would lead to “a monumental surplus to invest in further Gospel work”. Writing in the April edition of The Record, the Free Church’s monthly magazine, Professor John McIntosh referred to a previous discussion paper on offerings and urged members and adherents to consider giving a tenth of their income to the Lord’s work.

Spring conference 12-14 April in Inverness

The 2013 Spring Conference takes place at Greyfriars Free Church of Scotland in Inverness from Friday 12 to Sunday 14 April. The main address will be from Rev Dr Robin Sydserff, minister of St Catherine’s Argyle Church of Scotland in Edinburgh, who will speak on Daniel. The conference costs £25 for the weekend, or £12 for a day ticket. More details available on the conference website: http://fcossc.wordpress.com/

Briefing

Tithing

Tithing is the Christian discipline of giving one tenth of your income to supporting the Lord’s cause.   After reading Prof. MacIntosh’s article in The Record on tithing, I also read a blog post from Malcolm Maclean about tithing (http://greyfriarsreadings.blogspot.co.uk/).   Both are worth a read.   A few things occurred to me.

Firstly, do we tithe seriously?   In the Old Testament tithing was thought of as a test of our spiritual health (See Malachi 3:56-12).   God sent the prophet Malachi to remind the people that giving to the upkeep of his cause was a sort of spiritual thermometer.   What we privately give to the Lord’s cause, (and it seems clear that God expects us to tithe) says a lot about the state of our own hearts.   Nobody else can judge that – but God takes it seriously.   It’s tempting to think that these sort of money-issues are all “Old Testament only” or were somehow done away with in the New Testament, but the story of Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11) ought to teach us God still cares very deeply for the purity of our private giving to support his cause.

Secondly, do we tithe expectantly?   Tithing is not laid out in the Bible as a sort of trade – as if we give to God and he’ll give back to us a certain amount according to some sort of formula.   But clearly, in the Bible, God does promise to provide for his people’s needs.   We pray “give us our daily bread”.   But praying for God to provide for us, but then refusing to give God his share, is hardly an example of faithful living.    Tithing should be done with a faithful expectation of God’s blessing in our lives, but also through our lives.   Through tithing, the church grows, brings blessing to more and more people, and so on.   Perhaps our struggles with bearing fruit in our witness are because we do not honour God with our wallets.

Thirdly, do we tithe thankfully?   Giving God a tenth of our income is more costly when we do it grudgingly.   When we think about what God gave for us – his own Son, to experience human pain and taste death – we have to acknowledge that a tenth of our income is an appropriate expression of thanks.   One problem is when we give grudgingly we give thinking about the cost to us, not the benefit our offering will bring.   Our thanks in giving should not just be looking back at what God has done for us already, but also looking ahead to the good God will do with the money we are giving.   People will be saved because of our financial support – people who might not have been reached otherwise.   New churches will be planted, at home, or internationally – and new churches mean new Christians.   The church’s mercy ministry can go on bring relief to the suffering.   Our 10% makes a huge – eternal – difference in the lives of men and women all over the world!

Finally, do we tithe practically?   A tenth of our income seems like a lot.   The Bible often speaks of offerings coming from the first fruits – literally, the first of the harvest.   One practicality is to give to God’s cause first in your weekly or monthly budget.   Once it’s gone, you’ll not notice it the same.   But if you wait to give God only what’s left over in the budget, often you’ll find you have very little to give.   Money is still tight, and giving a tenth of our income can be a big change to make right away.   Often that’s not possible, but there are probably other options.   We can give a tenth of our working week to practical service.   I don’t mean the hours we come together for worship on a Sunday, or fellowship during the week – but giving 4 extra hours a week to doing practical things that serve the church, e.g. staffing the Mustard Seed Cafe, or the proposed Food Bank.

Advertisements

Bulletin – 24th March

Diary

Services Today

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John 1:1-18 (3) – John the Baptist

6:30pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Faith Mission Gospel Meeting

Mid-week Meetings & Events

Tuesday, 12-2:00pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Mustard Seed Cafe

Tuesday, 7:00pm @ The Manse – Christianity Explored

Wednesday, 7:00pm @ Sleat – Mid-week Bible Study

Saturday, 10:30am @ Kyle Free Church – Praise Workshop

Next Sunday

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John Norman Macdonald

6:00pm @ Kyleakin Village Hall – Joint District Communion

Notices

Christianity Explored

Please remember, this is the last week of the current CE group.

Faith Mission Convention

This weekend is the Faith Mission convention has been taking place at Broadford and Kyleakin.   The main speaker is Rev. George Macaskill, retired from Stornoway APC.   George is a fantastic preacher, and his messages will be worth making an effort hear.   Our own evening service in Broadford tonight will be cancelled to avoid over-burdening us with meetings.   The Faith Mission meeting tonight will be at 6:30pm in the Broadford Village Hall.

Broadford Manse “Deep Clean”

We expect to have the Broadford Manse on the market within the next few weeks.   Last week, all the old furniture and rubbish was cleared.   We now need to make sure the manse is clean and fit for photographing for the sale brochure.   A date for this is provisionally set for Thursday 28th at 10am.   As many volunteers as possible will make the job a lot quicker.   Please bring brushes, cloths, cleaning materials, window wipes etc.   Most rooms have wooden floor boards, but some have old lino coverings, so a mop or two might be useful as well.

Joint District Communion

The next joint district communion service will be Sunday, 31st March – Easter Sunday – at 6:00pm in the Kyleakin Village Hall.

Minister Away

Gordon will be on leave for about 10 days, from Saturday.   The morning service next Lord’s Day will be conducted by John Norman Macdonald, with our evening service cancelled for the joint district communion in Kyleakin.   The following Sunday morning is TBA, but the evening service in Broadford will be conducted by Stuart MacKinnon (Elgol).   In the event of any pastoral emergencies, please contact the elders in the first instance.

Denominational News

Board of Trustees workshop

Representatives from the main boards and committees of the Free Church and every Presbytery met at Greyfriars Free Church in Inverness to discuss issues facing the denomination over the next five years. Delegates were reminded of the purpose of the Church and discussed a vision of what the denomination will look like if that calling is fulfilled. The chairmen of the Home Missions, International Missions and College Boards all reflected on what this would mean for their respective areas. The final aspect of the discussion looked at how limited resources may be allocated in the current financial climate realising this vision and building God’s kingdom.

Marriage bill “completely nonsensical”

The Jedi Knights could soon be officiating at weddings in Scotland under plans to redefine marriage by the Scottish Government, according to the Free Church of Scotland. The Free Church described the Government’s plans to create a third category of marriage as “completely nonsensical”. The comments came as the denomination responded to the second consultation on the redefinition of marriage in Scotland, which it continues to vehemently oppose. The story attracted worldwide media interest.

New minister for Leith Free Church

Inverness Greyfriars Free Church assistant Rev Gavino Fioretti is set to create history by becoming the first-ever Italian minister in Edinburgh after accepting a call to Leith Free Church. An induction for the 38-year-old father-of-four, who is originally from Sardinia, is expected to take place on Saturday 20 April at 2pm.

Induction of Rev Andrew Coghill to Scalpay

The induction of Rev Andrew Coghill to Scalpay Free Church is expected to take place on Wednesday 27 March at 7pm. A special service welcoming Mr Coghill will be hosted in the Tarbert Church of Scotland building – as the usual place of worship in Scalpay is too small for the occasion.

Churchman criticises £1.6m Government grant to gay rights group

Rev David Robertson has criticised the Scottish Government’s decision to award a leading gay rights group £1.6 million of taxpayers’ money for its own schools programme. David, minister of St Peter’s Free Church in Dundee and director of the Solas Centre for Public Christianity, condemned all homophobic bullying in Scottish schools but argued the decision to give the Equality Network £1.6 million is unwise and unhelpful.

Bulletin: 17th March

Diary

Services Today

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John 1:1-18 (2) – The Message

3:30pm @ Kyleakin – Afternoon Service – Psalm 40 –

5:00pm @ Broadford – Evening Worship – 1 Timothy 1:8-17 – What’s the Law for?

Mid-week Meetings & Events

Tuesday, 12-2:00pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Mustard Seed Cafe

Tuesday, 5:00pm @ The Manse – Christianity Explored

Wednesday, 7:00pm @ Sleat – Mid-week Bible Study

Saturday, 10:30am @ Kyle Free Church – Praise Workshop

Next Sunday

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John 1:1-18 (2) – The Message

6:30pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Faith Mission Gospel Meeting

Notices

Christianity Explored

Please note, Christianity Explored resumes this week.

Praise Workshop

On Saturday (23rd March) there will be a praise workshop at Kyle Free Church, from 10:30am – 3:30pm.   This event will be focused on Psalm singing, and will be particularly useful for precentors, but is open to everyone who wants to go along.   There will be seminars running throughout the day, with a break for lunch 1-1:45pm, so if you can only make the morning, or the afternoon, please still feel free to pop in.   Lunch will be provided, but the Kyle congregation would appreciate an indication of numbers in advance.   Please contact Gordon if you plan on having lunch at the workshop.

Faith Mission Convention

Next weekend is the Faith Mission convention in Broadford and Kyleakin.   The main speaker is Rev. George Macaskill, retired from Stornoway APC.   George is a fantastic preacher, and his messages will be worth making an effort hear.   There are meeting Thursday and Friday night at 7:30pm in Kyleakin Church of Scotland, and in Broadford Village Hall on Saturday at 4:00 and 7:00pm, and Sunday at 6:30 and 8:15pm.

Our own evening service in Broadford next Sunday will be cancelled to avoid over-burdening us with meetings.

Joint District Communion

The next joint district communion service will be Sunday, 31st March – Easter Sunday – at 6:00pm in the Kyleakin Village Hall.

Denominational News

Board of Trustees workshop

Following on from the consultation exercise at the end of last year, the Board of Trustees are hosting a two-day workshop at Greyfriars Free Church in Inverness next week. Representatives from every Presbytery as well as the main boards have been invited, and it is hoped that discussions will help build consensus on the best way forwarded strategically for the Free Church. Please do pray for this important event.

Rev Dr John Nicholls set to join Smithton

Smithton Culloden Free Church in Inverness are adding another member to their ministry staff this coming summer. Rev Dr John Nicholls steps down as chief executive officer of London City Mission at the end of April after 20 years with the organisation, and will be joining Smithton as an associate minister in August. John will take special responsibility for training the office-bearers and the congregation in leadership and evangelism as well as ministering to the wider church and community.

Marriage consultation

All congregations are urged to respond to the Scottish Government’s second consultation on the redefinition of marriage. The consultation closes on Wednesday 20 March at 5pm. You can respond via the Scottish Government website here: https://consult.scotland.gov.uk/family-law/marriagebill

Spring conference 12-14 April in Inverness

The 2013 Spring Conference takes place at Greyfriars Free Church of Scotland in Inverness from Friday 12 to Sunday 14 April. The main address will be from Rev Dr Robin Sydserff, minister of St Catherine’s Argyle Church of Scotland in Edinburgh, who will speak on Daniel. The conference costs £25 for the weekend, or £12 for a day ticket. More details available on the conference website: http://fcossc.wordpress.com/

OMF missionaries return

We are pleased to report that the Rae family have made it safely back to the Philippines for missionary service with OMF. Last Friday over 100 people gathered at Dingwall Free Church for their recommissioning service.

Dumisani newsletter out now

The latest newsletter from the Dumisani Theological Institute in South Africa is now available to download from their website: http://www.dumisani.org/

Bulletin – 10th March

Diary

Services Today

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John 1:1-18 (1) – The Word

5:00pm @ Broadford – Evening Worship – 1 Timothy 1

7:00pm @ the manse – Teens Group

 

Mid-week Meetings & Events

Tuesday, 12-2:00pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Mustard Seed Cafe

Wednesday, 7:00pm @ Sleat – Mid-week Bible Study

 

Next Sunday

10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting

11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John 1:1-18 (2) – The Message

5:00pm @ Broadford – Evening Worship – 1 Timothy 1

 

Notices

Christianity Explored

Please remember, CE is postponed this week.   We will resume next week as planned.

 

Teens Group

We are now aiming to hold the Teens’ Group on the second Sunday each month – tonight.   This is for any kids in P7 or secondary school.

 

Joint District Communion

The next joint district communion service will be Sunday, 31st March – Easter Sunday – at 6:00pm in the Kyleakin Village Hall.

Denominational News

Home Missions Board update

The Home Missions Board met on Wednesday to discuss the mission work in congregations across Scotland. A number of developments included: approving the appointment of Paul Clarke as a church worker to St Andrews, plans for a youth camps fundraising weekend in June and the recommendation of ministry provision in East Kilbride and Sleat and Strath for a further three years – both of which will now go to May’s General Assembly for ratification.


International Missions Board update

The International Missions Board also met this week. It was noted that Clive and Ruth Bailey, who were working at the Colegio San Andres in Peru, will return home to Scotland on April 2, and they are expected to visit several Free Church congregations over the coming months.


Moderator visits South Africa

The Moderator is currently visiting South Africa and will return on 13 March. Rev Dr Iain D Campbell has met with missionaries and ministry students, and was the special guest speaker at Dumisani Theological Institute’s annual awards ceremony. Follow updates from the visit on the Free Church website.

Rev David Robertson appears on Channel 4

Rev David Robertson appeared on Channel 4 on Tuesday evening, discussing why Britain does not need atheist churches. The minister of St Peter’s Free Church in Dundee and director of the Solas Centre for Public Christianity said the term ‘atheist church’ was an oxymoron, because a church is based around Jesus Christ and belief in God. You can watch his slot again via the Free Church website. 
Spring conference 12-14 April in Inverness
The 2013 Spring Conference takes place at Greyfriars Free Church of Scotland in Inverness from Friday 12 to Sunday 14 April. The main address will be from Rev Dr Robin Sydserff, minister of St Catherine’s Argyle Church of Scotland in Edinburgh, who will speak on Daniel. The conference costs £25 for the weekend, or £12 for a day ticket. More details available on the conference website: http://fcossc.wordpress.com/

 

Bulletin – 3rd March 2013

Diary

Services Today
10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting
11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – Acts 16:25-40 – A Jailer Saved
5:00pm @ Broadford – Evening Worship – 1 Timothy 1 – A Father Writes…

Mid-week Meetings & Events
Tuesday, 12-2:00pm @ Broadford Village Hall – Mustard Seed Cafe
Wednesday, 7:00pm @ Sleat – Monthly Prayer Meeting
Friday, 7:30pm @ Portree Community Centre – Scotland for Marriage

Next Sunday
10:30am @ Sleat – Morning Prayer Meeting
11:00am @ Sleat – Morning Worship – John 1:1-18
5:00pm @ Broadford – Evening Worship – 1 Timothy 1
7:00pm @ the manse – Teens Group

 

Notices

Thanks
Thank you to everyone who was involved in helping out with last Sunday’s congregational lunch.   It was a great afternoon, and everyone seemed to have enjoyed the fellowship together.   God willing, we’ll have more events like that in future.

Christianity Explored
Please remember, CE is postponed this week.   We will resume next week as planned.

 Monthly Prayer Meeting
Please note: this week’s mid-week meeting is the monthly prayer meeting.   Please make an extra effort to come along to this if you are able.   Prayer notes are available at the door.

Scotland for Marriage
There will be a meeting, jointly hosted by the Christian Institute, Care and the Evangelical Alliance, in Portree Community Centre, on Friday, 8th March, at 7:30pm.   The meeting, “Speak now or forever hold your peace,” is for anyone who wants to know what steps can be taken to help defend marriage as the union between one man and one woman.

Teens Group
We are now aiming to hold the Teens’ Group on the second Sunday each month.   This is for any kids in P7 or secondary school.

Joint District Communion
The next joint district communion service will be Sunday, 31st March – Easter Sunday – at 6:00pm in the Kyleakin Village Hall.

 

News from the Denomination

More news is available daily at www.freechurch.org

Committee meetings
Most committees will meet over the coming week, so please remember their work in prayer – especially the Home Mission Board as they consider a formal approval of Gordon’s ministry here for the next few years.

 Meeting with Communities and Legal Affairs Minister
A delegation from the Free Church of Scotland will tomorrow (28 February) meet with the Scottish Government’s Communities and Legal Affairs Minister at the Scottish Parliament. The meeting with Roseanna Cunningham MSP will explore matters of mutual interest, particularly community projects which are expressions of the Free Church’s faith and ministry.

A freeze on ‘Wee Frees’
The Free Church Moderator has called on the Scottish media to stop using ‘Wee Free’ in reference to the denomination. Rev Dr Iain D Campbell described the phrase as an “unnecessary slur”.

Moderator to visit South Africa
The Moderator will be visiting South Africa from 6-13 March, meeting with missionaries and ministry students. Rev Dr Iain D Campbell will be the special guest speaker at Dumisani Theological Institute’s annual awards ceremony.

Scalpay induction
It is expected that the induction of Rev Andrew Coghill to Scalpay Free Church will take place at 7pm on Wednesday 27 March. The service will be held in the Tarbert Church of Scotland building. All welcome.

Dornoch Free Church begins £400,000 renovation
Dornoch Free Church is set to begin a £400,000 renovation project to transform its building into a multi-purpose venue for the community. The congregation has raised £130,000 thus far, allowing the first stage of work to commence, and donations from the wider community and Church are invited. From Sunday 17 March, the congregation will worship in the nearby Dornoch Academy whilst work takes place.

Pray for the Reanos
Free Church missionary Manuel Reano has sent an urgent prayer request following gunfire between local gangs, which led to the evacuation of schools and an enforced curfew on the area. Father-of-three Manuel Reano, who has been in Columbia for over a decade, teaches at the Medellin Seminary and is also involved in professional counselling with his wife Patti.

 

Briefing

Office Bearers – Our Goals
You might recall that in the Kirk Session’s “Redevelopment Plan” we said that one of the greatest challenges facing us in the next three to five years is a shortage of office bearers.   Over the next few weeks we’ll take some time to flesh out some of the Biblical teaching on office bearers in the church: elders and deacons.   We are not in a rush to appoint deacons (or elders) just yet, but we want to encourage the congregation to pray about this, with an understanding of why it is so important.

The congregation has been without a Deacons’ Court for several decades, but has been well served by a Finance Committee.   However, the Church recognises that Finance Committees are at best a stop-gap measure and should not be the normal long-term set-up for any congregation.   This is because a “Finance Committee” is not the Biblical model.   Instead, the Bible teaches that deacons – men of faith, filled with the Holy Spirit – collectively oversee and arrange for the practical ministry of the church (a role which, as we’ll see in coming weeks, involves far more than just looking after the fabric of buildings).   This is why, over the last few years, we’ve made a point of annually re-appointing the Finance Committee – it’s not a “for life” post.   As we begin appointing deacons, it is important to realise that the Finance Committee will eventually be phased out.

First among the qualifications of deacons (and elders) is that they must be men who profess faith.   So as we pray for God to raise up deacons who will serve well in the congregation, the first criteria we must pray for is men to be converted, and to profess that faith in Jesus.   In short, we need men of faith if we want to continue to grow and mature as a congregation.   Another qualification is that these men not be “novices” in the faith, meaning that they not be new converts.   These roles are ones that people grow into over time – not thrust on unsuspecting men the minute they profess faith.

It is really important that we all understand the role of prayer specifically on this issue in the coming months.   As we’ve seen recently, God’s answers to our needs are not always what we envisage, even when we have made good, healthy plans ourselves.   The congregation does need office bearers sooner rather than later, but the Kirk Session has opted to take time to reflect and teach on this issue.   Why?   Mainly, because we want to encourage the congregation to approach this issue prayerfully.