Dear Church Family.

It's always "a time to pray", but sometimes events personally, locally, nationally or internationally demand a very specific call for intercession and prayer, and so let me share these few prayer thoughts with you. First, let me share an urgent prayer request from our Church family, and then let me share some thoughts in relation to the passing of Queen Elizabeth II.

Thank you for your ongoing prayers for those who have been unwell, in hospital, or going through treatment - Charlene Cook, Hazel Douglas, Nancy More, Billy Trainer, Graeme Spencer (and for their families). By way of update from Graeme's surgery this week, the procedure seems to have gone well and he is now recovering at home - let's continue to pray for a full recovery and healing. 

However, I would ask you to pray specifically for Charlene and Mark Cook. It was a few weeks ago since Charlene had surgery following her cancer diagnosis, but she was re-admitted to hospital yesterday because of concerns about an infection. This has been quite a shock and is of course unsettling for them all. Please pray for this infection to be dealt with quickly and fully, and that there would be no further complications to her recovery and healing. May the Lord bring his healing and strength to her, and peace to the whole family. 

Thank you for praying for one another. This is core to who we are and what we do.

However, let me now turn to the news of the passing of Queen Elizabeth II.

The tributes being paid to Queen Elizabeth II celebrate her faithful and loyal service, but also recognise her deep faith in Jesus, which sustained and steadied her in both her personal and public life. In 2016, a short booklet was written by Mark Greene (London Institute of Contemporary Christianity) called "The Servant Queen and the King She Serves". Amidst all the tributes that will rightly be offered, I find that to be a fitting one line summary.

As we give thanks to God for her life and faith, we also pray for:

  • Her family - loss is loss whoever we are
  • King Charles III - as he picks up the mantle of the monarchy
  • The nation and nations - as they/we are reminded of the Lordship of Christ in her life, and the great hope to which she held and declared. We understand that "The Queen" is now with "The King of Kings" - this is her, and our, eternal hope in Christ Jesus.

On Sunday, we will begin our service with a short moment of prayer and thanksgiving, as we remember the Queen's life, service and faith. I hope you can join us as we gather to pray, worship, and hear from the Lord!

Thank you Church.

Praying for the Lord's encourgement and strength for you today!

Grace and Peace