I left home in quite heavy snow but thankfully it let up as I made my way across Glasgow on the now familiar First Buses 44 route.
Church: St Silas Church
Date: January 13 2013
Service: Holy Communion
Congregational Make-Up: This is a large church in the West End of Glasgow with a good percentage of young families and people in their 20-30s.
Central Feature: There was an unusually hushed atmosphere as I sat waiting for the service to begin. In welcoming the congregation the minister led everyone in the Collect for the day. This was followed by a hymn which launched straight into the preaching of God’s Word. The sermon focused on Jesus’ stilling of the storm in Mark 4. The preacher emphasised that who we see Jesus to be determines our response to him and our continuing responses to him. As he developed the story of the disciples’ experience in the middle of the lake he spoke about how awe is something we experience…Awe leads to worship…worship leads to transformation.
During a time of worship that followed parents went to the hall next door to gather their children and then everyone joined together for the celebration of Communion. This part of the service had a strong liturgical feel to it.
The Word preached and the word illustrated in Communion were the complimentary high points.
There was also a beautifully crafted prayer that drew on the passage that the preacher focussed on. I value this kind of intentionality from people who lead others into God's presence.
Stand-Out Moment: The moment of Communion was for me, a sacred time. We went forward to receive the bread and wine and the people who dispensed the elements spoke the words, “The body of Christ given for you…The blood of Christ shed for you” to everyone who received them. I had a strong sense that through the work of the cross, God was reaching out in grace to someone like ME!
Conclusion: I much appreciated the way in which this church weaved the history and heritage of Anglicanism into a contemporary service of worship.
After leaving St Silas I didn’t have to wait too long for “the 44” and returned to Waterfoot with a fresh appreciation of the diverse work of God in this great city.