Julian’s long March

Climb every mountain ! (well at least all the significant ones in Scotland)

Julian Ridal completed his latest long term mountain challenge recently.  On ascending Sgurr Dearg on the Isle of Mull on 16th June, he completed climbing all 224 of the Graham Mountains (Mountains in Scotland of height 2000 feet to 2500 feet in height with a reascent of at least 500 feet in all directions).  Julian is only the 80th person to admit to ascending all these mountains !

Julian moved up from England to East Kilbride in 1992. Since then, in his spare time he has been busy reaching and exploring the higher and remoter parts of Scotland and further afield. Previously completed challenges include ascending:

Julian says “I am privileged that my parents took me up my first mountain (Mount Snowdon in North Wales) in 1971 at the young age of 5 years. I thank God that for nearly 40 years I have been able to enjoy the higher parts of God’s creation. The weather and the views can vary from good to poor. Hill walking and mountaineering are great forms of exercise. I apply risk assessment and risk management principles in the mountains, particularly in the winter, when weather conditions can be serious. Mountaineering and hill-walking are so rewarding. God willing, I hope I will be able to continue enjoying the mountains for many years to come.”


Dawkins Disciple?

On the night of 21st October 2011 our front door was tastefully decorated with a silver spray can.  The same message was delivered on to the wall of our neighbours at the Westwood Parish Church.  On the front door of St Columba’s Lutheran Church the text “evolution” appeared in the same silver.  If this was your creed our website editor would love to talk with you.  Have you read John Lennox’s book ‘God’s Undertaker’?  He takes Professor Richard to the cleaners.

Freedom in Christ Course

 This course is an eye-opener, whether you’re a brand new Christian or have been on the road for decades.  It can help you to:

Sam led us in this prayer at the morning service on 30th October 2011

Almighty God, our loving heavenly Father, we bring to you now in prayer the hopes and needs of the world.  Each person you have made bears your image but in each that image is assaulted by many enemies.  Hunger and homelessness, violence and the fear of violence, greed, jealousy, hatred, and deliberate shunning of all that is good, true, wholesome and of good report  – all these threaten the humanity of men and women which is your breath within them.

Father, may your Church everywhere be a force for peace with justice.  May the Gospel of Jesus awaken everywhere such a vision of our real destiny that evil may be overcome, not with other evil but with good.

Lord God, you have called us to be a caring Church, reflecting in our lives your infinite care for us, your children.

Help us to fulfil our calling and to care for one another in an unselfish fellowship of love; and to care for the world around us in sharing with it the good news of your love, while playing our part in helping to alleviate the effects of poverty, hunger and disease.

And upon all who strive for the fulfilment of your reign on earth, Lord God, may there come such a spirit of trust and hope that nothing may seem too hard to do in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Loving Father, we pray now for all those in our family of believers here in Westwood who long to know the peace and wholeness which comes through the absence of physical pain and we pray for those finding it difficult to come to terms with the restrictions which age, illness or disability place upon them.  Father, we pray that they might know healing, hope, encouragement and your strengthening presence enabling them to persevere.

Lord God, we pray for those racked with anxiety about the present or with fears for the future. May they know the balm of your peace calming their troubled minds.  Father, there are also those longing to know peace through the restoration of relationships which are at this time difficult, tense, bitter or even broken.  We pray that you would give all those involved, a deep desire to be reconciled and to be reconcilers, whatever that might cost.

Lord God, our loving Heavenly Father, we pray for those tortured with guilt, who need to know the peace which comes from accepting your forgiveness through Christ’s death on the cross and also for those content in their sin, unaware of their need or unwilling to accept that they need to seek your forgiveness.  Through the work of your Holy Spirit in their lives alert them to their danger and give them the desire to accept your offer of salvation.

Father, we pray that through the work of your Spirit you would warm the hearts of any of us whose love for you has grown cold and that you would enliven the lives of any of us who are finding the going difficult on our spiritual journey.  Everlasting God, creator of the ends of the earth give your strength to all those here this morning who are weary and increase the power of the weak that we might soar on wings like eagles, run and not grow weary, walk in the joy of your company and not be faint.

Father God, when mystery hides you from the sight of faith and hope; when pain turns even love to dust; when life is bitter to the taste and our song of joy dies down to silence; then, Father, do for us that which is past our power to do for ourselves.  Break through our darkness with your light.  Show us yourself in Jesus suffering on a tree, rising from the grave, reigning from a throne with all power and love for us unchanging.  Father, as we are quiet now for a few moments please move among us, ministering to us as you know our needs.

Almighty God, our loving heavenly Father, we thank you that you have heard these our prayers as we have offered them to you in the name of your Son, our Lord, Jesus Christ.  AMEN