Good Morning on Saturday 28 March 2020

We gather together in spirit to Worship our loving and merciful God, who works all things together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

Prayer
Loving Father, during these times of distress, when we can’t meet together at Church, help us to remember that we are your Church. Please bless our lives of worship in your service.
Amen

Announcements today include:
*The live-streaming Sermon today can be viewed by going to the church website www.gracecom.church and clicking on the link there or click on this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=daQFiiaT6CE&feature=youtu.be
*We are sad to announce the death of Mrs. Jill Newman on 23 March.
*Don’t forget that the clocks go forward tonight, especially if you plan to view the live-streaming Sermon Sunday 29 March
*A full version of the weekly announcements are at the bottom of this page

Prayer points today include:
*We continue to pray for Andrew Silcox in hospital in France
*We petition on behalf of Colin Bovington’s brother who has coronavirus
*Be with the family of Tom Octave who has died of COVID-19, and especially with his wife, Julia, who is ill with the virus herself

During crisis and disaster you find that ‘perfect fear casts out love’ as in this tongue-in-cheek saying: “All sporting events cancelled but live boxing can be seen at Tesco, Morrisons, Aldi, Lidl, Sainsburys and Asda!”

Or during crisis and disaster you find that people turn to God.  Part of our role as Christians is to share the gospel, but not as this next saying quips:  “Try Jesus. If you don’t like Him, the devil will always take you back!”

Last Sunday Churches Together in England suggested that people put a candle in their windows at 7pm to represent the light of Christ shining in the darkness of coronavirus. We lit a candle in our window to join with Christians around the country. During this time of crisis remember that the light of Christ shines in and through us. It is by this that all men know we are Jesus’ disciples—Christians—when we show love to one another and all around us.

Suggested Hymn: By This Shall All Men Know (226 in WCG Hymnal)

Loving one another is definitely not as this next quip says tongue-in-cheek:  How long is this social-distancing supposed to last?  The wife keeps trying to get back in the house!!

Our Speaking of Life this week is Dr. Joseph Tkach entitled ‘God Is Love’ and can be accessed on the www.gci.org website or use this link: https://www.gci.org/media/videos/god-is-love-2/

Not just at Valentine’s Day, but every day, we show God’s love by our attitude, words and actions. Our next hymn says ‘Let courage rise with danger’ and stand together against the foe whether it be coronavirus, fear, anxiety, despression, lonliness or anger.

Suggested Hymn: Stand Up, Stand Up For Jesus (188 in WCG Hymnal)

The Sermon streaming online at 11am https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=daQFiiaT6CE&feature=youtu.be or click on the link on the UK church website www.gracecom.church

Suggested Hymn: Trust And Obey (18 in WCG Hymnal)

Romans 8:28 assures us that “all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Trusting in God brings the joy and peace that pass all understanding.

Prayer
May the God of love keep and bless you during the coming week. Help us to be of good cheer and to share our faith in any way we can during this time of crisis and self-isolation.
Amen

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A special message from James Henderson
GCI European supertendent

Thank so much for the good work that the Lord has begun in you, and for how you demonstrate Jesus’ love for others as we face the coronavirus crisis together. I know it’s hard for us not to be in regular fellowship, and that we love each other in Christ and long to meet face to face once more. I appreciate how so many are staying in touch in varied and creative ways, and let’s continue to do this. Let’s keep in touch with one another via telephone calls, e-mails, social media, sending cards and in whatever way is possible. Pray for those in authority, pray for those nearest to us, pray for those involved more directly in the Gospel work, pray for those who are sick, pray for the bereaved, pray for health workers and carers caught up in the coronavirus crisis, pray for those who don’t know Jesus that they may receive a spiritual awakening,  and pray also that the Holy Spirit will comfort believers who live in the constant shadow of persecution. Above all, let’s pray for the return of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who testifies in Revelation 22:20, “‘Surely I am coming soon’. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!”

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Thought For The Week
Hello.
Where would we be without our health workers, carers and all those who assist in the current crisis? Let’s continue to thank them and to rally around them.
Also, to thank the army of volunteers who have come forward at our time of need. Let’s not underestimate their contribution.
In a few weeks Christians remember an unexpected volunteer. One that came out of the blue. Someone that many people thought was distant, and too high and mighty to be concerned deeply about us. But they were wrong. I’m talking about God, who sent his Son to save us.
Jesus, God’s Son, volunteered to comfort us and to provide a life for us beyond this one. Of his own volition he chose to die in our stead, and, in so doing, gave us hope not only for this life, but also for a future beyond the grave.
He still volunteers to help us today. Not even death could stop him. He rose from the dead so he could continue to serve each and every one of us.
Thank God for volunteers.

James Henderson
GCI European Superintendent

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ANNOUNCEMENTS AND INFORMATION FROM THE UK CHURCH OFFICE:

Tom Octave – Camberwell Congregation
Submitted by Barry Robinson

It is with great sadness that I announce that long-time member and much-loved brother in Christ, Tom Octave, was taken into hospital this week diagnosed with pneumonia as a result of COVID-19 and passed away on Thursday 26 March. Tom not only attended in Camberwell but regularly attended with the London and Stratford congregations and had been a stalwart in the church choir; he will be sorely missed.
His wife, Julia, was also taken to hospital with similar symptoms and at the time of writing, we are awaiting a diagnosis and an update on her condition.
Prayers are requested for Julia’s full recovery, for comfort and peace to all Tom’s family, and for the members of the London congregations as well as Tom’s friends who are slowly coming to terms with this news.

Dave Bovingdon
Submitted by Colin Bovingdon  Watford Congregation

Can you please keep my brother, Dave in your prayers. For the last ten days he has been presenting symptoms of the Coronavirus.  The doctor has now advised Dave to call the Coronavirus 111 dedicated number, which he has done and I am now very anxious as I wait to hear what they tell him.
Could I please request that church members pray for Dave’s recovery from this, and for me as I am very anxious at this time.

Mrs Jill Newman –  Watford Congregation
Submitted by David Silcox
It is with great sadness we inform you of the death of Mrs. Jill Newman of the Watford congregation. Jill died peacefully in a St.Albans Care Home on Monday March 23rd.
Jill Newman had been a member for over 50 years and in the 60s and 70s worked in the Registrar’s Dept of Ambassador College. Indeed many students including myself received their acceptance letter from the Registrar via Jill Newman. She also worked for the Deputy Chancellor and Dean of Faculty before the closure of Ambassador College in 1974.
Jill was very active in her local congregation and was subsequently ordained a Deaconess. In the early years of Day by Day Jill was an active writer and records show she wrote 81 contributions before ill health prevented her further contributions. A wonderful testament to Jill.  Jill began to suffer loss of memory and became confused and anxious before suffering a recent fall and broken hip, and died in care a few days ago. Jill Newman never walked if she could run and will always be remembered for her energy and commitment to the Church she loved.
She will be sorely missed by all who knew her but we are assured of her future in God’s loving care.

 Andrew Silcox update 
Submitted by David Silcox 

You recently received a note about a deterioration in the health of my brother, Andrew, and he has asked me to give you a full update on recent developments. Over three years ago, Andrew suffered a broken bone in his foot which required corrective surgery. He later developed a serious infection in the foot which developed into sepsis. He became very ill and a lengthy hospital stay followed, which included further corrective surgery.
After many months in hospital, he was fitted with a boot to help with his walking as well as other aids for improved mobility. A further complication involved a dramatic drop in his kidney function which severely limited the amount of antibiotics he could be given.
Some 10 days ago, I learned that another infection had developed in his foot and that surgery was required again. My wife and I were in Australia at the time, so I rang him to hear the news and to encourage him at this difficult time. On 13 March, Andrew underwent surgery to amputate his left foot. The surgery went well and although he had some bouts of nausea, he is now able to eat satisfactorily. I spoke to Andrew on Monday and he is in good spirits. He has been allowed to sit in a chair and he hopes this will lead soon to the fitting of a prosthetic.
Andrew wanted me to thank every one so very much for the prayers, messages and cards that he has received. All hospitals in France are in lockdown at the moment so Dana is not allowed to visit. Please continue to remember Andrew and Dana and the whole family in your prayers at this time.

Andrew Silcox update 

A message from Dana Silcox has just come in asking for prayers for Andrew because the nausea and dizziness that David mentions in the previous announcement has turned into vomiting which indicates that his kidneys are overloading on creatinine which weakens his kidney function .  A worsening of this could require his return to hospital which they are very much trying to avoid.  
Your prayers are greatly appreciated



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