All we need! A sermon on the Parable of the Workers in the Vineyard: 1 March 2015, The Second Sunday in Lent

Old Testament Reading: Psalm 16.5-11

Gospel Reading: Matthew 20:1-16

(Year A, Narrative Lectionary)

In the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.

‘That’s not fair!’ is a phrase which parents are very familiar with. If one child gets a bit more cake, than his brother, of if little sister gets to watch TV while big sister has to tidy her room, we hear the plaintive cry, ‘That’s not fair’. Children soon develop a find sense of justice- especially if it’s an injustice to them, as they see it.

I think most children would ask of our Gospel parable today: ‘Is it fair?’ For it is a story about a strange kind of fairness. Jesus tells us of farmer who hires men for the day to work in his vineyard. He goes to the marketplace early in the morning and hires some men for the day. And because, presumably, he needs more of them, he goes back at nine o’clock and twelve o’clock and three o’clock and even at five o’clock. Continue reading

Sunday Bulletin 1 March 2015

WORSHIP THIS WEEK
Sunday 8 March 2015: Third Sunday in Lent
10am Morning Worship at St Stephen’s
11.15am Morning Worship at the Old High
Services led by David Macartney, ministry student, for Presbytery representative- come and cheer David along!
SUNDAY BULLETIN ITEMS should be sent to Jim Monro: jim@jimmonro. The deadline for all items is Wednesday at noon.
NEWS FROM OUR CONGREGATION
For further information and contact details for any items listed below:
E-mail: invernesschurch@gmail.com
GET TICKETS FOR BELLADRUM! Bellardum Tartan Heart Festival have donated 2 pairs of 3-day tickets to the 2015 festival, which we are able to sell to raise money towards our fabric funds. These much sought-after tickets originally cost £135 plus booking fee each, and are now sold out. To bid for the tickets, please email invernesschurch@gmail.com, giving the full names you wish to have on the tickets, and with “Bellardum tickets” in the subject line. The top two bids will win a pair of 3-day tickets each (for 6,7 and 8 August). Closing date for entries: Friday 6 March. More details from The Minister.
RETIRING COLLECTION The collection after Holy Communion at St Stephen’s raised £159.91 for the Inverness Street Pastors.
SOUTHSIDE CARE HOME Services at Southside Nursing Home are held immediately after the morning service at St Stephen’s. We still seek members willing to lead these services on a rota basis: contact Janet Robertson.
LENT CONVERSATIONS ON FAITH AND PUBLIC ISSUES continue at St Stephen’s tonight. How should Christian faith affect our attitudes to controversial issues? A chance for conversations about the big questions facing the world today. Come to one or come to all The programme for the coming weeks is:
1 March Education- should the church be in our schools? Religious education and religious observance
8 March International issues- war, asylum seekers, refugees- what is the church is doing?
15 March Caring for the earth- climate change, fracking, sustainable energy- how Green is our Christianity?
22 March The ethics of science- embryo research, Frankenstein foods- should we play God with nature?
All Sundays 7-8 pm, St Stephen’s Hall, Southside Road. More information see the leaflets at the church doors, or from Malcolm Macrae dmmacrae@uwclub.net or www.oldhighststephens.com/faith-current-issues-series-discussions-lent/
THE BIG CLEAN at Stephen’s will take place this year on Saturday 14 March. Please put this in your diary. For more details contact Joan Darcy.
CHRISTIAN AID We need someone to take on the very important task of coordinating our annual Christian Aid Week door-to-door collection. This is a practical way in which we help some of the most needy people in the world, and raises thousands of pounds annually for an excellent cause. Please contact the minister if you would like to know more.
LENT REFLECTIONS: COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS The Church of Scotland is offering daily reflections for Lent, in partnership with Christian Aid. Contributors include two members of our congregation- Rachel Hutcheson and our Minister. It’s also a good way of giving to Christian Aid. Visit http://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/resources/lent for the daily reflection.
HOBBY/CRAFT EVENINGS are recommencing fortnightly in St Stephen’s Hall at 7.30pm on Wednesday 4 March. Please come along and enjoy the camaraderie. Further details from Margaret McAleer.
SEATING AT THE OLD HIGH CHURCH In order to improve the congregation’s singing, and to create a friendlier atmosphere, we are asking those who attend at the Old High to sit in the centre section of the church. Please speak to Peter if you have any questions.
CHURCH MAGAZINE Willie Morrison, editor of the OHSS Magazine, requires reports, articles and photos for the next issue, which is due out in March. Please submit whatever you can, as early as possible, as the cupboard is particularly bare at this time, by e-mail to willie@kenilweb.com. The deadline is Friday 13 March
OLD HIGH LUNCHTIME RECITAL on Saturday 21st March at12 noon: We welcome Mark Spalding, a former organ scholar from St Andrews University and currently organist in Arbroath, for the inaugural recital in the 2015 Old High Music Programme. Mark plans to introduce us to some contemporary Scottish music, including work by Morris Pert, a composer with family connections around Inverness. He hopes to be joined by Haworth Hodgkinson, poet/musician/radio broadcaster, to perform certain pieces. Brochures outlining the programme for the coming year will be available shortly. We do hope many of you will come along and enjoy what promise to be excellent recitals. For advance notice of all music events in our congregation, please send an email to ohssmusic@gmail.com and encourage your friends to sign up for this mailing list- it’s a great way to keep up-to-date. Or contact Andrew Stevenson.
CROSSREACH NEWS and Prayer Diary (Feb – May), is now available at church doors.
WORD FOR TODAY The new issue of Word for Today is available at the doors of both our church building.
We hope you like the LENTEN CROSS at St Stephen’s. Many thanks to John and Anette Stoker for this!
MINUTE FOR MISSION: WORSHIP ACTION GROUP For more information, please contact Rachel Hutcheson.
OTHER NEWS
JULIAN MEETINGS are now well-established in Inverness and meet for silent contemplative prayer on the first Wednesday of each month. Our next meeting is on 3 March from 7.15pm to 8.30pm at St Stephen’s. All are very welcome to join us. For further information please contact Patsy Thomson patsy@burnside.vispa.com
ST JOHN’S CHURCH Southside Road, Inverness has a monthly prayer group that meets in the church vestry. It meets the 1st Friday of the month. Next meeting is on Friday 6th March 7pm.
CLAN (Christians Linked Across the Nation) Gathering in Inverness, Friday 6 and Sat 7 March 2015, King’s Factory, Smithton, Inverness. An evening and day event focusing on the belief that God is issuing a ‘Generation Call’ to all the generations, to every age to rise up and seek Him afresh! There is also a programme for Primary School Children; Pre school children; and a Youth Programme. Cost: Adults £30, Student £25, Secondary School Age £5, Primary Free. Book on www.clangathering.org.uk
PUPPET TRAINING DAY Ever wondered about using puppets as a ministry tool? Find out how to get started and learn some basic/advanced skills. Come along to Inshes Church on Saturday 14 March from 10.30am to 3pm and the cost is by donation. Please bring your own lunch, tea and coffee are provided. For more information contact Chris Watt chris@outofthebox.me.uk.
FRESH EXPRESSIONS OF CHURCH DAY CONFERENCE: IMAGINE CHURCH “for those that don’t do church”. Speakers Olive and John Drane will lead the day with interactive learning with presentations, interviews, stories, activities and questions. Saturday 21 March from 9.30 to 4pm in Fort Augustus Village Hall (transport may be available) For details contact The Minister http://www.freshexpressions.org.uk/vision/fortaugustus15

Mrs Mary Angus – funeral announcement

Mrs Mary Angus, one of our members, who previously worshipped at the Old High, has died at Cameron House, Culduthel Road.

She was 93.

The Rev Peter W Nimmo will conduct Mrs Angus’s funeral service at the Old High Church on Monday 2 March at 10.30am.

The funeral director is Wm T Fraser and Son (01463 243232).

Belladrum Tartan Heart tickets auction

belladrum-thf-logo-black-hi-res

 

Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival have kindly donated 2 pairs of 3-day tickets to the 2015 festival, which we are able to sell to raise money towards our fabric funds. These much sought-after tickets originally cost £135 plus booking fee each, and are now sold out. To bid for the tickets, please email invernesschurch[a]gmail.com, (replace [a] with @) giving the full names you wish to have on the tickets, and with “Bellardum tickets” in the subject line. The top two bids will win a pair of 3-day tickets each (for 6,7 and 8 August). Closing date for entries: Friday 6 March. Contact us for more details.

Sunday Bulletin 22 February 2015

WORSHIP THIS WEEK
Sunday 1 March 2015: Second Sunday in Lent
10am Morning Worship at St Stephen’s
11.15am Morning Worship at the Old High
7pm: The Lent Conversation at St Stephen’s will be followed by a short Communion service
SUNDAY BULLETIN ITEMS should be sent to Jim Monro: jim@jimmonro.com. The deadline for all items is Wednesday at noon.
NEWS FROM OUR CONGREGATION
For further information and contact details for any items listed below:
E-mail: invernesschurch@gmail.com
GET TICKETS FOR BELLADRUM! Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival have donated 2 pairs of 3-day tickets to the 2015 festival, which we are able to sell to raise money towards our fabric funds. These much sought-after tickets originally cost £135 plus booking fee each, and are now sold out. To bid for the tickets, please email invernesschurch@gmail.com, giving the full names you wish to have on the tickets, and with “Belladrum tickets” in the subject line. The top two bids will win a pair of 3-day tickets each (for 6,7 and 8 August). Closing date for entries: Friday 6 March. More details from Peter, or come along to our coffee morning to find out more!
COFFEE MORNING THIS SATURDAY 28 February, 10am to noon in St Stephen’s Hall in aid of Church Funds. Donations of cake/candy, unwanted gifts, raffle prizes gratefully appreciated. Tickets now on sale. Today there is a box at the front door of St Stephens for non-perishable donations. Please see Mary Home or Kate Leckie for donations at Old High. The St Stephen’s Vestry will be open 7-8pm and the Hall will be open 8-9pm on Friday 27th for donations for Coffee Morning. Many thanks to all who have already contributed. Your support is greatly appreciated. If you are able to help please contact Margaret McAleer
LENT CONVERSATIONS ON FAITH AND PUBLIC ISSUES begin at St Stephen’s tonight. How should Christian faith affect our attitudes to controversial issues? A chance for conversations about the big questions facing the world today. Come to one or come to all The programme for the coming weeks is:
22 February Economics- inequality, poverty, tax- how do we make our country fairer for all?
1 March Education- should the church be in our schools? Religious education and religious observance
8 March International issues- war, asylum seekers, refugees- what is the church is doing?
15 March Caring for the earth- climate change, fracking, sustainable energy- how Green is our Christianity?
22 March The ethics of science- embryo research, Frankenstein foods- should we play God with nature?
All Sundays 7-8 pm, St Stephen’s Hall, Southside Road. More information see the leaflets at the church doors, or from Malcolm Macrae dmmacrae@uwclub.net or www.oldhighststephens.com/faith-current-issues-series-discussions-lent/
CHRISTIAN AID We need someone to take on the very important task of coordinating our annual Christian Aid Week door-to-door collection. This is a practical way in which we help some of the most needy people in the world, and raises thousands of pounds annually for an excellent cause. Please contact the minister if you would like to know more.
REAL EASTER EGGS are on sale again with a new range this year: The Original (with an Easter storybook, Happy Easter banner, 125g milk chocolate egg and a pack of milk chocolate Chunky Buttons) for £3.99, the Peace Edition (200g milk chocolate egg, an olive wood peace dove keyring from the Holy Land, a simple guide to the Easter story and an 80g orange milk chocolate bar) for £9.99 and the Dark one (165g dark chocolate, 3 dark chocolate mini squares and a simple guide to the Easter story) for £5.50. Orders can be placed on the sign-up sheets at both churches or contact Katharina Nimmo katharina.nimmo@btinternet.com). Last orders today, please.
LENT REFLECTIONS: COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS The Church of Scotland is offering daily reflections for Lent, in partnership with Christian Aid. Contributors include two members of our congregation- Rachel Hutcheson and our Minister. It’s also a good way of giving to Christian Aid. Visit http://www.churchofscotland.org.uk/resources/lent for the daily reflection.
SEATING AT THE OLD HIGH CHURCH In order to improve the congregation’s singing, and to create a friendlier atmosphere, we are asking those who attend at the Old High to sit in the centre section of the church. We did this two weeks ago, when it was much appreciated by many people (not least by our new Director of Music, Steven Flett!). Please speak to Peter if you have any questions.
DIRECTOR OF MUSIC AT OLD HIGH CHURCH As you will know we have asked Steven Flett to take up this post. Steven lives in Orkney and intends moving to Inverness shortly. However he will need some other employment, and may also need somewhere to stay for week or so to begin with. If you have any suggestions, please contact Peter or Andrew Stevenson.
CHURCH MAGAZINE Willie Morrison, editor of the OHSS Magazine, requires reports, articles and photos for the next issue, which is due out in March. Please submit whatever you can, as early as possible, as the cupboard is particularly bare at this time, by e-mail to willie@kenilweb.com The deadline is Friday 13 March.
LUNCH CLUB will meet at 12.30pm on Thursday 26 February at the Craigmonie Hotel . Please consider joining us for good food and fellowship. Transport is available. Contact Val Cantlay for further information.
CROSSREACH NEWS and Prayer Diary (Feb – May), is now available at church doors.
WORD FOR TODAY The new issue of Word for Today is available at the doors of both our church buildings.
OLD HIGH SATURDAY LUNCHTIME CONCERTS We will shortly be announcing another series of exciting lunchtime Saturday concerts for 2015 at the Old High Church. For advance notice of all music events in our congregation, please send an email to ohssmusic@gmail.com and encourage your friends to sign up for this mailing list- it’s a great way to keep up-to-date.
OTHER NEWS
PUPPET TRAINING DAY Ever wondered about using puppets as a ministry tool? Find out how to get started and learn some basic/advanced skills. Come along to Inshes Church on Saturday 14 March from 10.30am to 3pm and the cost is by donation. Please bring your own lunch, tea and coffee are provided. For more information contact Chris Watt chris@outofthebox.me.uk.
FRESH EXPRESSIONS OF CHURCH DAY CONFERENCE: IMAGINE CHURCH “for those that don’t do church”. Speakers Olive and John Drane will lead the day with interactive learning with presentations, interviews, stories, activities and questions. Saturday 21 March from 9.30 to 4pm in Fort Augustus Village Hall (transport may be available) For details contact The Minister http://www.freshexpressions.org.uk/vision/fortaugustus15
PRAYER POINTERS will return in a few weeks. If you have ideas on the format and content of the Prayer Pointers, please contact the Minister. Meantime, as a guide for your prayers, please use the Prayer for the Day on the Order of Service, and pray for the activities of the congregation listed here.

A glimpse of light: a sermon for Transfiguration Sunday 2015

Texts:

2 Peter 1:16-21

Matthew 17.1-9

A glimpse of light

In the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.

Nowadays, we quite often say that fanatical fans of pop stars, sports stars or other celebrities ‘idolise’ their heroes, and we often speak of such famous people as ‘idols’. We mean nothing especially pejorative about the term- when we say that some sportsman or pop star is an ‘idol’ to his fans, that’s a fairly morally neutral term in today’s culture. We just think it’s slightly crazy that, especially young people, should show such an interest in these performers.

But the word idols has its roots in the Bible, and where it very much has negative overtones Continue reading

Sunday Bulletin 15 February 2015

WORSHIP THIS WEEK
Sunday 22 February 2015: First Sunday in Lent
10am Sacrament of Holy Communion at St Stephen’s
11.15am Morning Worship at the Old High Led by the Rev Arthur Sinclair, Pastoral Assistant
SUNDAY BULLETIN ITEMS should be sent to Jim Monro: jim@jimmonro.com.The deadline for all items is Wednesday at noon.
NEWS FROM OUR CONGREGATION
For further information and contact details for any items listed below:
E-mail: invernesschurch(a)gmail.com

FAITH AND CURRENT ISSUES is the theme for our Lent discussions, Sunday nights beginning next Sunday. Find out more here.
MINUTE FOR MISSION: STREET PASTORS Andrew Gregg is speaking to us about this at St Stephen’s this morning (he was at Old High last week), and he will be available after the service at St Stephen’s to chat to. Contact him at drew@loveinverness.org or see www.facebook.com/NessPastors .
DIRECTOR OF MUSIC AT OLD HIGH CHURCH The search committee has invited Steven Flett to take up this post. Steven played last week at the Old High and everyone enjoyed his contributions. Steven lives in Orkney and intends moving to Inverness shortly, when we look forward to getting to know him.
CONFIRMATION CLASS for anyone wishing to become a full member of the church will begin shortly. Please contact the Minister if you are interested (peternimmo@minister.com).
CHURCH MAGAZINE Willie Morrison, editor of the OHSS Magazine, requires reports, articles and photos for the next issue, which is due out in March. Please submit whatever you can, as early as possible, as the cupboard is particularly bare at this time, by e-mail to willie@kenilweb.com. The deadline is Friday 13 March.
CHRISTIAN AID We need someone to take on the very important task of coordinating our annual Christian Aid Week door-to-door collection. This is a practical way in which we help some of the most needy people in the world, and raises thousands of pounds annually for an excellent cause. Please contact the minister if you would like to know more.
REAL EASTER EGGS are on sale again with a new range this year: The Original (with an Easter storybook, Happy Easter banner, 125g milk chocolate egg and a pack of milk chocolate Chunky Buttons) for £3.99, the Peace Edition (200g milk chocolate egg, an olive wood peace dove keyring from the Holy Land, a simple guide to the Easter story and an 80g orange milk chocolate bar) for £9.99 and the Dark one (165g dark chocolate, 3 dark chocolate mini squares and a simple guide to the Easter story) for £5.50. Orders can be placed on the sign-up sheets at both churches or contact Katharina Nimmo (katharina.nimmo@btinternet.com). Last orders on Sunday 22 February, please.
HOBBY/CRAFT EVENINGS are recommencing fortnightly in St Stephen’s Hall at 7.30pm on Wednesday 18 February. Please come along and enjoy the camaraderie. Further details from Margaret McAleer.
COFFEE MORNING is to be held on Saturday 28 February from 10am to noon in St Stephen’s Hall in aid of Church Funds. Donations of cake/candy, unwanted gifts, raffle prizes will be gratefully appreciated. Tickets are now on sale. Next Sunday (22nd) there will be a box at the front door of St Stephens for non-perishable donations. Please see Mary Home or Kate Leckie for donations at Old High. Your support is greatly appreciated. If you are able to help please contact Margaret McAleer.
CROSSREACH NEWS and Prayer Diary (Feb – May), is now available at church doors.
WORD FOR TODAY The new issue of Word for Today is available at the doors of both our church buildings.
OLD HIGH SATURDAY LUNCHTIME CONCERTS We will shortly be announcing another series of exciting lunchtime Saturday concerts for 2015 at the Old High Church. For advance notice of all music events in our congregation, please send an email to ohssmusic@gmail.com and encourage you friends to sign up for this mailing list- it’s a great way to keep up-to-date.
NURSING HOMES We are seeking a few more people who would be willing to help lead a very short and informal service at Aden House nursing home. We would also appreciate a few more helpers for our Sunday services at Southside Nursing Home. Please contact Peter if you can help.
OTHER NEWS
WORK PLACE CHAPLAINCY This is an opportunity for interested or already involved to find out: What is Work Place Chaplaincy; essential skills required and how to use them; opportunities for chaplaincy; introduction to further training. The meeting is in the Baptist Church, Castle Street on Wednesday 25 February from 7.15 to 9.30pm. For further details or to book contact info @wpcscotland.co.uk
ADVANCE NOTICES
FRESH EXPRESSIONS OF CHURCH DAY CONFERENCE: IMAGINE CHURCH “for those that don’t do church”. Speakers Olive and John Drane will lead the day with interactive learning with presentations, interviews, stories, activities and questions. Saturday 21 March from 9.30 to 4pm in Fort Augustus Village Hall (transport may be available) For details contact The Minister. http://www.freshexpressions.org.uk/vision/fortaugustus15
PRAYER POINTERS will return in a few weeks. If you have ideas on the format and content of the Prayer Pointers, please contact the Minister. Meantime, as a guide for your prayers, please use the Prayer for the Day on the Order of Service, and pray for the activities of the congregation listed here.
FAITH AND CURRENT ISSUES
How should Christian faith affect our attitudes to controversial issues?
A chance for conversations about the big questions facing the world today.
Come to one or come to all
Sunday nights in Lent:
22 February Economics- inequality, poverty, tax- how do we make our country fairer for all?
1 March Education- should the church be in our schools? Religious education and religious observance
8 March International issues- war, asylum seekers, refugees- what is the church is doing?
15 March Caring for the earth- climate change, fracking, sustainable energy- how Green is our Christianity?
22 March The ethics of science- embryo research, Frankenstein foods- should we play God with nature?
Sundays 7-8 pm, St Stephen’s Hall, Southside Road
Details Malcolm Macrae dmmacrae@uwclub.net
www.oldhighststephens.com/faith-current-issues-series-discussions-lent/
www.facebook.com/oldhighststephens : Twitter: @Invernesschurch

Old High Church media report: a correction

Following a media report about the Old High Church, the Minister, the Rev Peter W Nimmo, has issued a statement:

Old High St Stephens’ congregation has been very grateful for the coverage in the media given to our attempts to secure the future of the Old High Church.

However, a media report has today appeared suggesting that we have been receiving a large number of donations. This is not the case.

Although the local community and various bodies have offered support, the support we have been receiving has not, yet, been financial.

The support at this stage is from many people and organisations who have stated that they are willing to work with us to ensure a future for the Old High.

We are having many positive conversations, in which it is apparent that people understand the importance to the city of the Old High building, with many good ideas being suggested to help resolve the situation.

We are very grateful for the moral support from throughout community. That goodwill is also an encouragement to me and the congregation.

Although it is early days, I am hopeful that, eventually, with the support of partners in the city, we will be able to secure the future of the Old High Church as a place of worship and an important landmark in our city.

 

Rev Peter W Nimmo, minister of Old High St Stephen’s Church of Scotland, Inverness.

Faith and Current Issues: Discussions in Lent

God_the_Geometer

How should Christian faith affect our attitudes to controversial issues?

A chance for conversations about the big questions facing the world today.

Come to one or come to all!

Each Sunday night in Lent, 7-8pm, beginning 22 February, at St Stephen’s Church, Southside Road, Inverness IV2 4XA

The topics for each week are as follows:

22 February: Economics Inequality, poverty, tax- how do we make our country fairer for all?

1 March: Education Should the church be in our schools? Religious education and religious observance

8 March: International issues War and peace, asylum seekers, refugees- What is the church is doing?

15 March: Caring for the earth Climate change, fracking, sustainable energy. How Green is our Christianity?

22 March The ethics of science Embryo research, Frankenstein foods- should we play God with nature?

Contact us for more information.

Ordinary people, fantastic events: sermon for 8 February 2013

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany (Narrative Lectionary)

SERMON
Text: Matthew 14.13-33

Discipleship in the fast lane
In the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.

What I like about the Gospels is that they are very realistic. That might seem a strange thing to say, when we have just heard stories of miraculous feeding and walking on water. The miraculous and unlikely is certainly part of the Gospels. But there are also realistic- the things people do, even in extraordinary situation, the way they react, is often very true to life. People appear in the Gospels warts and all. That’s especially true of Jesus’ disciples, who come across, not as plaster saints, but as very fallible human beings, who often make mistakes and constantly misunderstand their master. Continue reading