Thursday, August 27, 2020

August 30, 2020

 Welcome to the blog! As we begin this week, we are now preparing to start public worship in our churches once again, at the start of the coming month.  We ask that you wear a mask, sanitize your hands as you enter the church, register your attendance, keep 2m distance between you and others. We look forward to welcoming some of you back into the church but recognize that for others, the best choice is to stay home. We encourage you to do what is best for you. The videos and blogs will continue for those unable to join us in church. 

Hymn:  Open My Eyes #371VU

Suggested Scripture lessons:  Exodus 3:1-15

Psalm 105:1-6, 23-26

Romans 12:9-21


Prayer: O God, as come before you in worship, remembering the stories and the teachings of the Scriptures, speak to us. Speak to us of your everlasting and never-failing love. Speak to us of your tender care which hears and answers their cries of need and despair. Speak to us about how we can live as your people and be witnesses to the power and depth of your love and grace. We give thanks for the gift of your Holy Spirit who comforts, guides, and renews us, this day and always. Help us to follow in the way of our Saviour, who opens our eyes to your presence with us in the world and to all we can do to bring honour and glory to your name, now and always. Amen. 

Hymn: Lord, Speak to Me #589VU

It has been announced to the UCW units in Howick, that we will not be holding a Fall Luncheon this year. Maybe next year? 

Please keep in mind the special appeals launched by the United Church: one for response to COVID-19 in the Southern Hemisphere, and another for The people of Beirut and Lebanon. Donations may be made online, by phone or by mail. 

Riverfield Presbyterian Church will hold an outdoor service on Sunday, August 30th at 10:15am. Please bring your own chair and mask. In case of rain, the service will be cancelled. 

Beechridge Presbyterian Church is continuing to hold its afternoon services every second Sunday, September 6th, 20th, and October 4th at 1:30pm. The services are held in the church and space is limited, due to social distancing. 

Worship schedule for September:

September 6:   9:30.  Ormstown.     11:00.    Howick

September 13: 9:30  Franklin           11:00     Ormstown       11:00     Howick (with D Beattie)

September 20  9:30   Howick            11:00     Ormstown

September 27   9:30   Franklin         11:00       Howick

Thursday, August 20, 2020

August 23, 2020

 We are now preparing to resume public worship. There will be a service this Sunday, hopefully outside in the Howick parking lot at 11am. If you choose to come, please bring your own chair and mask, and anything else you may need. Masks are required to enter and leave the site. We will provide hand sanitizer onsite and will be observing the Social distancing protocols recommended by the government. We will also be keeping a register of who has attended in case contact tracing becomes necessary. There will be no congregational singing in the service, but we will include some music, either performed or recorded. If it is not wise for some to join us, the videos on our blog will continue. 

Beechridge Presbyterian Church will be holding its first service of the season indoors in the church in the afternoon at 1:30pm. Space will be limited due to social distancing and all government protocols will be observed: masks, hand sanitizing, etc. 

Next week Riverfield will be holding an outdoor service at 10:15am before the construction on their building begins. Once again, please bring your own chair and mask. Social distancing will be observed and hand sanitizer provided.  In case of rain, the service will be cancelled. 

Indoor services will begin in our 3 churches in September. September 6th Ormstown and Howick will begin at 9:30 and 11:00 respectively and Franklin the following week at 9:30. Our regular schedule of services will be followed, though services will probably be briefer. Once again, the video messages will continue online. If you are concerned for your health, or you are feeling unwell or have been in contact with someone who is showing symptoms, please stay home. Masks will be required to enter and leave the church and Some pews have been blocked to maintain social distance. Hand sanitizer will be provided at the entrance and a register of attendees will be kept in case contact tracing is required. At present, no children’s programs will be offered. During the service, no congregational singing will be included or bulletins provided, according the church recommendations. Doors and windows will be open to facilitate ventilation. We look forward to being able to gather together to join together in worshipping God, in offering our praise and thanksgivings. 

Hymn  Great is Thy Faithfulness #288VU

Scripture Lessons: Exodus 1:8-2:10

Psalm 124 p.848VU

Romans 12:1-8


Hymn: Who is on the Lord’s Side? #365 Hymnary

Prayer:  O God, in the midst of uncertain and changing times, we pray to you. 
  We pray to you for hope in the midst of fear; for direction in the midst of confusion; 
  We pray for courage in the midst of change; and for strength in the midst of uncertainty. 
Help us to see and know how you call us to live, to serve, and to love one another.  
Help us to know that you are with us always, that you are on our side, even when we feel alone. 
And help us to follow in the way of our Saviour, Jesus the Christ, who calls us to faithfulness and forgiveness, to watchfulness and witness. 
Be with all who call on you this day, and with all of us who rely on your strength, your wisdom, and the power of your Holy Spirit, now and always. Amen.

Hymn: God who Gives to Life its Goodness #260VU

Please keep in mind the special appeals the United Church has launched: for a response to COVID-19 in the Southern Hemisphere and also for the people of Beirut and Lebanon. Contributions can be made online, by phone with a credit card or by mail with a cheque marked on the front of the cheque specifying which appeal it is intended for. Your generosity will be greatly appreciated. 

The Treasurers of our congregations have also been grateful and appreciative of the faithfulness and thoughtfulness of our members in dropping off and mailing in contributions to our congregations. This has been helpful through these difficult times. Thank you!

Thursday, August 13, 2020

August 16, 2020

 Another week gone. Anybody see the Perseus this week? Anybody pause to give thanks to God for the wonder, the beauty , and the abundance of God’s creation? Let’s take time now to do just that. 

Hymn: Pass Me Not O Gentle Saviour #665VU

Suggested Scripture Lessons: Genesis 45:1-15

Matthew 15:21-28

Prayer:   O God, we give you thanks that you are a God of patience and persistence: that you are patient with us as we learn your ways; and that you persist in calling, speaking, and helping and healing your people day by day. We pray that we too will learn to be patient and persistent: patient with ourselves and other and persistent in seeking to learn your ways to live and love one another. Help us not to tire of doing the good we know and to delight and rejoice in the difference we can make. We continue to pray for those who are struggling this day. We pray for the people of Beirut and Lebanon; for the people of Red Lake, at home and away; we pray for families struggling with difficult decisions; and teachers and leaders facing difficult times. As we seek to discern the ways to live and to serve, guide us with your Holy Spirit so we may walk in The way of our Saviour, and to share and spread your love. Amen. 

Hymn: Love Divine #333VU

The United Church has announced another special appeal for the victims of the explosion in Lebanon. Donations may be made online (, by phone with a credit card to 1-800-268-3781 ext. 2738 or by mail to The United Church of Canada-Philanthropy Unit, Emergency Response 3250 Bloor St W, Suite 200, Toronto, On M8X 2Y4. Please mark “Emergency Response - Lebanon” on the front of your check. 

The earlier special appeal for victims of COVID-19 in the Southern Hemisphere also continues. Donations may be made in the same ways and marked for COVID response.

Beechridge Presbyterian Church will begin to hold services Sunday August 23rd at 1:30 pm inside the church. Social distancing and other health precautions such as masks will be required. Attendance may need to be limited due to space. Services are planned to continue every second Sunday until the first Sunday in October. 

Saturday, August 8, 2020

August 9, 2020

 I hope you have had a good week. Here are the worship materials for this week:

Hymn #220VU Praise to the Lord, the Almighty

Suggested Scripture Lessons:  Psalm 105 p.828-9VU
Matthew 14:22-33


A Prayer: O God, we praise and thank you that you are a God who can be known in both storm and stillness. We can know your power and majesty in the storm and we can hear your Spirit speak to us in the stillness and quiet of our hearts. May your Spirit speak to us this day that we may overcome our fear and doubts and take our first few steps of faith and hope. 
      Be with those who are filled with fear this day: the people of Beirut and Lebanon seeking to survive and rebuild after the devastation of this past week; the people who struggle with COVID and other diseases as well as those who care for them; and those who deal with uncertainty and injustice each day. 
     Be with them. Be with us, and help us each day to show our care and concern for one another, just as Jesus did, our Saviour and Lord. In his name and powerful spirit we pray. Amen. 

Hymn:  Will Your Anchor Hold? #675VU

The United Church has launched another special appeal. This is for COVID relief in the Southern Hemisphere. Donations may be made online, at the church’s website,; byy phone, at 1-800-268-3781 ext. 2738 with a credit card; or by mail to The United Church of Canada Philanthropy Unit— Emergency Response, 3250 Bloor Street West, Suite 200, Toronto, ON M8X 2Y4.  Please mark your cheque with “Emergency Response COVID-19”. 

Congratulations to June and Eldon Orr who are celebrating their 70th anniversary this week. 💕

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Back from vacation! Learning how to post blogs! This might be exciting (or maybe not).  Some of you may know that Alyson was intending to give up typing and collating the bulletins for Howick just as the shutdown started. She has continued to post my videos and service suggestions through the spring. Now I am hoping to follow in her footsteps. It seems that there is a lot to learn! I hope I can figure it all out. Barbara

Scripture Lessons for this week:  Genesis 32:22-31
                                                      Matthew 14:13-21

Suggested hymns: O God of Bethel #650 VU

O Love that Wilt Not Let Me Go #658VU


We were saddened to hear this week about the death of Doreen Brown, who was a member of the Howick community, the Parish Nursing Committee, as well as the Tres Saint Sacrement Catholic congregation. We give thanks for her life and faithfulness as part of our community for so many years.