Saint Nicholas' Parish Church, Belfast - WOW
Worship on Wednesday is held once a month (last Wednesday) at 6.30 pm in Saint Nicholas'
November WOW ... Anticipation.
The beauty of the outside wrapping is but a pale reflection of the greater beauty of the gift.
Thanksgiving foods completed this pre-Advent/Thanksgiving WOW
W O W
Worship on Wednesday
WOW is for everyone ... at the moment the group is mainly adults ... but it would be good to have children too ... it is very informal and relaxed.
The next one ... 29th January at 6.30 pm
Above ... finding your place in the Kingdom
Below ... thinking about betrayal and forgiveness
Pilgrims in the Desert (above)
Saint Stephen's Day Boxes (below)
Advent and Reflecting on Saint Nicholas
WOW in October
WOW is an alternative worship experience! With a mixture of traditional elements (prayer, Bible reading, songs), interactive items, creative play, food and fellowship we look at the Christian life together.
WOW begins at 6.30 pm and lasts for three quarters of an hour ... although people often stay around to chat for a while afterwards if they're free. WOW is a group working together to discover what it is to be Christian in every aspect of life.
WOW is on the last Wednesday of the month from September to June (inclusive).
Thinking about prayer ...
WOW considers "Rest"
WOW at Pentecost
WOW on 29th February wonders what we'd do with an extra day
WOW thinks about the world
WOW in action
Making Palm Crosses, Paper Angels ...
Theme: Celtic Roots
Meets on the last Wednesday of the month!
Barbecue at the Rectory
Theme: Ember Days
Service: What is your passion?
Theme: "Spy" Wednesday
Theme: A Pilgrim in the Desert
Theme: The Church in All the World
Theme: Saint Stephen's Day / Boxing Day
Theme: "Celebration: Advent and Saint Nicholas"
Making Advent Candles was the gathering activity and we took a moment to think about the names that are used to describe Jesus ... these were written either on the candle or in the leaflet.
Lord Saviour Messiah The Vine The Way The Truth
The Life Emmanuel Redeemer The Rock The Word Son of God
Counsellor Lamb of God High Priest Anointed One Living Water
Morning Star King of kings Lord of lords Lion of Judah
Good Shepherd Prince of Peace The Resurrection
Then, recognising that we're almost at Saint Nicholas' Day our thoughts turned to the saint and to the stories and legends surrounding his life as Bishop of Myra.
On 6th December we'll have the church open all day and there'll be a chance to learn more about his life and work, have a cup of tea and chat to people. At eight o'clock there's to be a concert with a quartet, Avalon, and two choirs.
WOW ended with a short time of prayer and a birthday celebration to mark the first anniversary of our gatherings.
Theme: "All Saints"
Theme: "A Harvest of Prayer"
This summer WOW started with a cup of tea and some cakes! After all ... this is how we rest ... sit down with a cuppa!
Then, as we sat around the table, we sang some hymns with that same theme ... "Jesus, I am resting, resting ...", "Be still for the presence of the Lord, the holy one is here ... "
The Lectern was the site for the next section of the evening as we thought about the creation of a Sabbath and Jesus' invitation to come to him and rest. How important it is for all of us that we have time to reflect and enjoy being in God's presence.
We'd started the evening with a quiz based on words from WB Yeats' poem, "The Lake Isle of Innisfree" and so we ended with words too ... using "rest" in a sentence to make a bookmarker which might be a reminder to spend that special time with God.
... and the church was filled with the aroma of lavender ... the herb that helps people to relax and sleep!
Theme: "L" Plates
A disciple is a "Learner". The disciple follows both the lifestyle and teaching of the teacher ... so, as believers, we are to model our lives on that of the Lord Jesus.
Learning is a life-long process. It requires observation and practice and it helps if there's a mentor or companion to make the journey with us.
The June WOW began with some juggling practice ... two or three juggling balls ... some had never had an opportunity to learn this as a child and found great difficulty, some had been proficient but through adult years of non-practice had lost the skill ... "if you don't use it, you lose it" was seen to be true in this skill too.
A diary of one learning to drive gave some humorous insights into the way coordination develops and how the process of discipleship isn't a smooth one.
Participants then looked at Peter's life in the gospels and reflected on his journey as a disciple ... time ran out before we had a chance to consider what we know of him through the Acts of the Apostles as he continued to learn what it means to follow Jesus.
Supper was a simple cheese and biscuits board with tea and coffee ... until the next time in July ... keep following closely!
With the day of Pentecost just behind us we explored the work of the Holy Spirit through looking at the symbols used to represent the Spirit's influence.
Making 3D symbols from quick drying clay was an "interesting" activity ... and some members had more success than others in representing everything from crosses and anchors to fish and fire!
A short liturgy was followed by a quiz on famous (or less well known) symbols from the business world ... cherry lips were given out as prizes ... another symbol of the way the Holy Spirit gives us the words to speak!
Then a Walter Brueggemann poem led into a time of thinking specifically about wind and fire as symbols for the Spirit.
Prayers focussed on the work of the Spirit in the world before members gathered round the fondue table to dip all sorts of red fruits into the rich chocolate sauce ... or the fiery coloured vegetables into the hot red dips!
Colour and symbol together kept the evening centred on the work of the Holy Spirit.
Theme: Angels Unawares
Most of our lives have been touched by "Angels" - God's Messengers - and we can all be an 'angel' for someone else.
The craft this month was to make a hanging decoration in the shape of an angel!
In the side chapel candles were lit to remember those special people who had been God's messenger to us.
Luke's account of the journey to Emmaus was a reminder that the Lord Jesus draws alongside and walks with us ... though we don't always recognise his presence at the time.
After a short walk to the baptistery we then prayed for those who need the touch of an angel ... or to whom we might be the angel in question. "When I needed a neighbour (angel) were you there, were you there .... "
Angel Cake, Angel Slices, Angel Delight and Philadelphia cheese continued the theme as we reflected on the past six months and decided that WOW will continue during the months September to June.
Theme: From Darkness to Light
As Lent draws to a close with Passiontide and Easter the contrasts of the season gave participants an opportunity to reflect on the period from Palm Sunday to Easter Day.
Making palm crosses was the opening activity ... and the results were "varied" in terms of 'success' although the ability to laugh at oneself is always admired!
The poetry of the nineteenth Presbyterian minister, the Rev WR (Bertie) Rodgers, took us on a journey around the church to gather the light. Candles were collected at each "station" after the poem was read and these assembled on the holy table around the cross as the resurrection verse and some short prayers brought the journey to a conclusion.
Refreshments continued the theme of darkness and light with contrasting breads, biscuits and drinks!
Theme: Expect the Unexpected
There are some unusual customs associated with the Leap Day, 29th February ... and we've been thinking how often in the Bible there are unexpected turns and twists to the stories ...
WOW took an unusual look at Lent ... and gave the opportunity to reflect on how time may be used.
The gathering began in the choir stalls! An unexpected place ... and some organ music ... another unexpected item ... then an Easter Egg hunt at the beginning of Lent ... really turning the expected on its head!
"To make the world a better place, if I had an extra day I would ... ". This sentence was concealed in Easter Eggs which were hidden all over the church. Participants then had a few minutes to reflect on the question. The answers were placed in the font and some read out and turned into prayers.
"Expect the Unexpected" and the "egg" theme continued into the fellowship meal ... Scotch Eggs being the centrepiece!
"The Lord's my shepherd..." sung while gathered around the piano reminded us of the pilgrimage journey, full of unexpected turns and twists yet always with the one who guides through the darkest times.
Cupcake Quiz (answers below)
Theme: The World
Food and table fellowship played a significant part in Biblical narratives ... Abraham welcomed guests with a meal, Jesus often met individuals at table and fed large groups of people, he attended weddings and shared Passover with his closest friends. Following this pattern, and the example of the early church, who broke bread in each other's houses regularly, WOW takes the opportunity to eat together, to party and to celebrate as a way to engage with one another and to deepen our fellowship.
We had a look at the Diocese of Kajiado in Kenya ... a church with which we are in a living partnership.
The evening began with a reflection on saying "grace" before meals and we enjoyed hearing a number of them. Being Burns Night we had the Selkirk Grace and then learned the Johnny Appleseed Grace too.
The quiz on the countries of the world depicted in the cupcakes was fun ... though rather difficult!
How many can you name?
If you've not been to WOW yet ... why not take the chance to see what's happening?!
Reflecting on the Visit of the Magi we considered not only our gifts to Jesus but the gift that God gave to us in sending Jesus to the world.
At the Nativity Scene: People from all over the world gather to worship and bring their gifts ... so we clustered around the scene. Then each person received a gift of a key with a fob that read: "I am the way, the truth and the life." Jesus is the key to life, the key to the new year. A path lit with dozens of lights then led the group to:
the Choir Room: Celebration. Party food and drink was prepared so that the joy of the incarnation could continue in action.
The Stuart Townend/Keith Getty song ended the evening: Joy has dawned upon the world!
Using three sites around the church building we thought about the Christian journey as pilgrimage.
First table: Bread. Jesus, the bread of life. Taking some bread with us we then made a journey to:
Second table: Passover foods. The symbolism of the various foods eaten at Passover gave a chance to reflect on the joys and sorrows in our lives. Lettuce, egg and herbs were then added to the bread to make a sandwich before we moved on to:
The Font: Water. This was filled to overflowing with bottles of water and the talk there emphasised the need for water ... Jesus, the living water.
Before some prayers and a final song the group enjoyed fellowship together over this simple meal.
Earth, Air, Fire, Water ...
WOW on the last Wednesday of the month at 6.30 pm
A Harvest of Prayer
We light a light in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit ...
At WOW there is always "table fellowship" as members eat and chat together.
The Fire of the Spirit
Mindful of others
Johnny Appleseed Grace
Oh the Lord is good to me
and so I thank the Lord
for giving me the things I need,
the sun, the rain and the apple seed,
the Lord is good to me. Amen.
The hidden egg!
To make the world a better place ...
The table is ready
Enjoying a meal together
Jesus: the Key to Life!
Jesus: the Light of the World.
Cupcake Quiz Answers!
Christmas at Sa...
Diocese and Church
12/10/2013 2:44:01 PM