Monday, July 28, 2014

Bible Study

At the end of our last Bible Study in June, Rev. Irwin promised (threatened?) to give us homework for the summer.  When Sunday after Sunday passed with no assignment, I thought perhaps he had forgotten.  Not so!  Last week he challenged us to study the passage quoted below using the inductive study technique, as outlined.  
   So here is the challenge, extended to all readers of this blog.  Enjoy!

Matthew 25:31-­‐46 Inductive Study 

The Three Questions of Inductive Study

1. What does it say?
           a. Look for the unexpected
           b. Identify key words
           c. Who  / when / where / what…
2. What does it mean?
          a. Grammar: look for pronouns / persons /  names and  verbs /                    tenses
          b. …why?
          c. Look for  structure
          d. Look for parallels
          e. Look for poetry
          f. Look for synonyms and metaphors
          g. Examine context
3. What does  it matter?
         a. Look for direction
         b. Look for insight


31‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory.

32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepher separates the sheep from the goats.

33 and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left.

34 Then the king will say to those at his right hand, "Come, you that are blessed by my father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world

35 for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,

36 I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me."

37 Then the righteous will answer him, "Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink?

38 And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing?

39 And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?"

40 And the king will answer them, "Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me."

41Then he will say to those at his left hand, "You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels:

42 for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink,

43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me."

44 Then they also will answer, "Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?"

45 Then he will answer them, "Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the leastt of these, you did not do it to me."

46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.'

Monday, July 21, 2014


The strawberry tea on Saturday afternoon can be counted an all around success.   From the beautifully decorated hall to the plates of delicious food to the wonderful piano music, everything worked together to provide patrons with an excellent experience. 
     There were many visitors among the diners and I heard nothing but congratulatory remarks.  "I've never been to a church tea that was as lovely as this," commented a guest at my table.  "What an attractive space," said another.
The food was so plentiful and so tasty that many people asked for take-home containers.  They couldn't finish the amount on their plate, but they didn't want to abandon it either!


  The genealogy group came.

       The ladies took tea.
and the gentlemen too.

The production crew perfected their technique.

       We were privileged to have Elizabeth provide background music -- Some background!  She played Beethoven!

      I didn't get pictures of all the "behind the scenes" workers, but Darlene was in charge of the crew and brought some of her friends on board to help.  They did a terrific job.  
      Many thanks to the cooks, the bottle washers, the ticket takers, the launderers, the decorators, the advertisers, the servers and the tea pourers who combined to make the afternoon such a delight.  
   Oh yes, as well as providing a time of fun and fellowship and community, the strawberry tea was a fund-raiser for our youth who will take part in a mission trip to the Dominican Republic in March 2015. The final tally isn't in yet and there are still donations coming, but it would appear the tea raised approximately $1000.00 for that project.  Well done everybody!

Monday, July 14, 2014

One of the features that distinguishes SPPC is our music. We love to sing hymns.  No need to attend a special hymn-sing on a Friday night, just come to SPPC on Sunday morning and you'll hear such favourites as "Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah," "Amazing Grace," and "Holy, Holy, Holy."  Even though the choir is on holiday for the summer, you'll find singers scattered among the pews and a strong lead from the organ.
    Recently we sang "My Faith it is an Oaken Staff."   The words are by Thomas Lynch and the tune is from a Swiss melody.  For all that I've been singing in choir since I was ten years old, this lovely hymn, with its rollicking tune is not that familiar to me.  I wanted to know more so I asked for Dr. Cecil Kirk's notes.  Edna kindly gave me permission to share them on this blog.

My Faith it is an Oaken Staff
                                         notes by Dr. Cecil Kirk

Scripture reading:  Mark 6. 7 – 13

       Thomas Lynch began his career as a teacher but later became pastor of a Congregational church in London.  His preaching was not of the popular variety but he had the gift of making people think in a new and intimate way about spiritual matters.  He was a great lover of nature and found much of his inspiration to holiness in the beauty of God’s world around him.  This is reflected in the hymns he has left us.

            Analogy forms a great part of our Christian understanding.  We frequently use things that are familiar to us to help us understand things that are more difficult and especially things that are abstract.  What is faith?  Most of us have a hard time trying to express in words what is an essential element in the Christian life.  But we can use other yardsticks to get across our understanding.  Here it is likened to a traveller’s staff and a soldier’s sword.  And the Christian life is compared to a journey and a battle.  An age which used walking much more than we do, and which was not subjected to the increased horrors of modern warfare would readily recognize what was being said.

            Travellers of old frequently carried a sturdy oaken staff and that for a number of reasons.  It could be used to lean on when one grew weary.  It could be used as a weapon to ward off attackers, whether human or animal.  The Christian pilgrim has faith as a staff.  Our journey through life will bring us to different types of terrain.  Sometimes the going will be easy like the grassy sod, there will be other times when it will be like walking over flinty rock but, easy or difficult, we have a guide going on ahead of us and we have the staff of faith to lean on.

            The Christian is not only a pilgrim but also a soldier.  The Christian life is frequently likened to a war against sin and evil both within ourselves and in the world and the Christian must arm himself for battle.  As the pilgrim will not fear the road because faith is a staff, in the same way the soldier will not fear the battle because faith is a sword.  Armed with such a weapon the Christian warrior will be able to fend off and overcome falsehood and temptation.
            The hymn concludes with a prayer that God will impart his Spirit so that we may become more and more like him; that we will be given courage to face whatever life may bring us and patience to wait upon him for all our needs.  These are the things that have characterized the true saint of God in every age.

For more on the Thomas Lynch, click here

Monday, July 7, 2014

by Felicity Smith

   After much consideration, Maximillian, Diane, and I, Felicity, have decided to join with another local team to embark on a mission trip. This trip will take us to San Pedregal, located in the Dominican Republic during March of 2015. 
     In the past this group has helped to build homes for the most needy in their community, as well as other buildings used to serve their community. They also run an afternoon program for the children; allowing the team to make personal connections, while bringing some joy into all of the children’s day.
    During the next few months we will be doing a fair number of fundraisers, including, bake sales, a BBQ, a “variety talent night”, a Silent auction, a Strawberry Tea, and a Bridge Luncheon. With these fundraisers, we hope to include the community  that surrounds us our church, inviting them into our church home to participate in these events.
    We welcome you all to attend our first event on July 19th, a Strawberry tea. For information on this event and to purchase a ticket call the church office at 250 656-2241
    For more information on following events and the mission trip itself, feel free to talk to Max, Diane, or myself after the service any Sunday.
    Thank you all for your support as we embark on our journey of a life time.