Covid-19 previous info page

This page contains the older information from the main Covid-19 update page.

Thu 28th May

Melvin has written a meditation for today entitled "The God to whom we pray".

You can listen here:

Mon 25th May

Melvin has written a meditation for today entitled "Motivational Praying".

You can listen here:

Sat 23rd May

Join us tomorrow for our broadcast services on our video page at 10.30am and 6.30pm.

You can download the "Suit Up!" family pack for this week here: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Suit_Up_Session_2.pdf

Here are some questions to help you think through the sermons:

Morning - Luke 18:1-8

  • 1a) How are you tempted to view God when your prayers go unanswered?
  • 1b) How has this parable helped you to view God rightly?
  • 2a) What are some of the faulty views we have of ourselves when we come to God in prayer?
  • 2b) How has this parable helped you to view yourself rightly?
  • 3) How does knowing Jesus will return to bring about justice for His chosen ones affect your prayer life?
  • 4) What is the relationship between prayer and faith? How does this relate to Jesus’ return?
  • 5) In what ways has this passage and sermon informed/transformed your attitude towards prayer?
  • 6) In what ways will this passage and sermon inform/transform your actions in prayer?

Evening - 2 Corinthians 10:1-11:15

  • 1a) When it comes to speaking the truth where are you in danger of buying ‘into the culture’ rather than remembering ‘you’re in Christ’?
  • 1b) What weapons do we have in our arsenal? How confident are you with your weaponry?
  • 2) How has this sermon helped and equipped you to rightly evaluate a minister or ministry?
  • 3) What is the difference between false jealousy and godly jealousy? When is godly jealousy appropriate?
  • 4) How has the sermon helped you in your attitude towards false teachers?
  • 5) How has the sermon helped you in your attitude towards faithful teachers?

Thu 21th May

Melvin has written a meditation for today entitled "God's Providential Protection".

You can listen here:

Tue 19th May

Our family resources have begun a new series on The Armour of God - why not join with us to learn these bible verses? Here are some of our Children and Youth leaders learning the actions to Ephesians 6:13!

Mon 18th May

Melvin has written a meditation for today entitled "Capture the vision".

You can listen to it here:

You can download the e-book “If you could ask God one question” by Paul Williams and Barry Cooper for free until the end of June 2020 via The Good Book Company:


It's a fantastic resource and looks at a number of questions asked by those who aren't Christians.

Sun 17th May

Join us for our broadcast services on our video page at 10.30am and 6.30pm.

You can download the "Suit Up!" family pack for this week here: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Suit_Up_Session_1.pdf

Questions to help you think about Sunday's sermons:

Morning service: Luke 15:1-10

  • How might we be being ‘exclusive’ in a God-dishonouring sense? How might we be corrected?
  • How do we see the lost? How should we see the lost?
  • How might this parable shape our prayer life, our evangelism and priorities?
  • Where are our lost sheep and how can we reach them?

Evening service: 2 Corinthians 8 and 9

  • How do we respond to opportunities to show Christian generosity?
  • In what ways can we be more generous and so work through the principle, ‘You reap what you sow’?
  • Where are we seeing little reaping which might be a sign that we need to sow more?
  • What is the difference between God’s economics and human economics - vv 10-11? Which economic system are we using?
  • To become more like Jesus means becoming more generous. How can we encourage each other to be cheerful givers?

Thu 14th May

Melvin has written a meditation for today entitled "Genuine Satisfaction".

You can listen to it here:  

Wed 13th May

Filming doesn't always go smoothly - and produces lots of bloopers! Here's our CY team trying to remember the memory verses! And when we finally get it right - can you remember it all yet?!

Tue 12th May

Our church musicians have been making music from their own homes

Mon 11th May

Melvin's meditation for today, "The Guiding God", is available here.
You can listen here:

Tomorrow at 8pm Lee McMunn of Trinity Church Scarborough will be hosting a live talk "The End of the World as we know it? Where is God in the coronavirus?" followed by a Q and A. Join in on Zoom, Youtube Live or Facebook Live.

The funeral of Graham Barnett was held today. Melvin's address from the service can be downloaded here.

Sun 10th May

Join us for our broadcast services on our video page at 10.30am and 5.30pm. Please note, because the Prime Minister is addressing the nation at 7pm on Sunday, the evening service will be streamed starting at 5.30pm instead of 6.30pm.

We'll be having another Zoom meet up for a chat at the earlier time of 5pm. Church members will get an email or text with details of how to join.

You can download the "Keep on Keeping on" family pack for this week here: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_On_Session_7.pdf

Questions to help you think through the morning sermon:

  • How does what happens in creation reflect both the kindness of God and his severity?
  • What difference should the disruption we are experiencing make to our thinking about God, life and eternity?
  • Why is it a false presumption to think that everything will continue as it always has done? How is this connected to idolatry?
  • Jesus used all sorts of metaphors to describe the judgement to come, for example he spoke of Gehenna (hell), which was a valley in the south of Jerusalem believed to be cursed and which served as a local rubbish tip; how appropriate is it to think of the present crisis as an ‘echo’ or picture of the judgement to come?
  • How should Christians and the church be actively responding to the present crisis?

Fri 8th May

On this day 75 years ago the nation celebrated. The war in Europe was over. Street parties, dancing, games. The nation rejoiced.

We should be so grateful to all who fought and sacrificed for our freedom, and we should remember the joy of VE Day.
Let's also remember there will be a day when all war is ended and true peace will come. Our freedom has been eternally bought by Christ at the cross, and death defeated as he rose again victorious.

Remembrance Hymn by Tim Chester, Phil Moore, Colin Webster

Thu 7th May

Melvin's meditation for today is entitled "The picture worth a thousand words". You can read it here or listen using the player below.

Tue 5th May

How have you got on learning Hebrews 12:1-6? Here are the next set of actions!

Mon 4th May

Melvin's meditation for today is entitled "Being with the Lord."

You can listen to Melvin here:

Sun 3rd May

Join us today for our broadcast services on our video page at 10.30am and 6.30pm.

We'll be having another Zoom meet up for a chat at 6pm. Church members will get an email or text with details of how to join.

You can download the "Keep on Keeping on" family pack for this week here: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_On_Session_6.pdf

Questions to help you think about the morning sermon Luke 14 v12-24

  • If our society were to accept that there is a heaven, who would they put on the guest list? Who would religious people put on the guest list?
  • Why did the Pharisees believe they were certain of a place in heaven? How did the guest list for the meal they were having together reveal the true state of their hearts? 
  • How could people in St John's/Riverside/St Faith's be in danger of ‘looking like God’s people but not being changed by Jesus’ words’?
  • Why is Jesus the key to being part of the promised feast? Why is it such foolishness to reject him?
  • What reasons do the people around us have for not accepting Jesus as Saviour and Lord? Where in our lives are we rejecting Christ’s Lordship because we are filling up on other things?  
  • Who is actually on the guest list for heaven? Why is this so offensive in our culture? How should the wonder of the gospel affect our worship of God and our urgency in prayer and evangelism?

And for the evening 2 Corinthians 5-6:2.

  • In what ways are people tempted today to dismiss Paul as a man and so dismiss his message? Why should this be resisted?
  • How can fixing our eyes on heaven help us to overcome being disgruntled? How can we encourage one another to do this more often?
  • What role does the Holy Spirit play in this?
  • How seriously do we take the idea of judgement for Christians and what difference should this make?
  • How might we open ourselves up to the ‘constraining of the love of Christ?’
  • How should we view Christ’s death on the cross? How does what Paul says here calm any fears we might have that not all our sins can be forgiven?

Sat 2nd May

On Monday at 8pm is the first of a series called 'Conversations' run by our friends at Christ Church Durham. It is a series of interviews about the truth of Christianity and the change that Jesus Christ brings. There is more information, and how to join here www.stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/conversations.pdf

Thu 30th April

Melvin has written a meditation for today: "Fear and Faith".
You can listen to Melvin here:

Wed 29th April

Join us tonight for our online Central Prayer Meeting at 8pm (or watch on the St John's YouTube channel). The prayer points can be found here for your continuing prayers.

The unedited version of the video from our mission partners is available here.

Tues 28th April

How are you getting on learning Hebrews 12? Here is a recap and actions to help you learn verse 5!

Mon 27th April

Melvin has written a meditation for today: "Take on the Lord's character".

Sun 26th April

Join us today for our broadcast services on our video page at 10.30am and 6.30pm.

We'll be having another Zoom meet up for a chat at 6pm. Church members will get an email or text with details of how to join.

You can download the "Keep on Keeping on" family pack for this week here: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_On_Session_5.pdf

Here are some questions to help you think about the morning sermon:

  • What does the imagery of being ‘dressed ready to serve’ and ‘keep your lamps burning’ convey about how we wait? What will help you to consciously live each day in anticipation of Christ's return?     
  • What is actually being promised in verse 37? How can this verse be a great motivation to us? 
  • Jesus tells us that we do not know when He will return so that we will avoid calculations about the timing of His return and instead live conscious of the truth of His return - Discuss. What impact should this have? 
  • Think about the illustration of the timesheet – what did it convey? What does the timesheet of your life reveal about you?

And for the evening sermon:

  • What sorts of things might cause us to ‘lose heart’ as we walk the Christian life? How does knowledge of God’s mercy help us?
  • When and how are we tempted to modify the teaching of the Bible to make it more acceptable to ourselves and others?
  • How can we help each other to be people of integrity in the way we behave; fidelity in what we believe and intelligibility in how we communicate the Gospel?
  • Why are ‘numbers’ not necessarily a sign of a ‘successful ministry’? What should we be looking for?
  • What encouragements are there in this passage for us to keep on praying and witnessing to those we love who are not yet believers?

Thu 23rd April

Melvin has written a meditation for today entitled "God is all we need".

Wed 22nd April

Melvin recommends this article by Andrew Symes: Who's got the answers?

Melvin has recorded this pastoral address to the church family. If you want to read the text it is here.

Tues 21st April

Muslims around the world begin their holy month of Ramadan at sundown on Thursday, April 23. Let us pray that God would draw more Muslims to himself. Join Prayercast as we pray through the month of Ramadan. https://prayercast.com/

Mon 20th April

From Melvin: It is with a heavy heart that I share with you the sad news that our dear brother Graham Barnett collapsed on late Sunday afternoon and died. We know that he has gone home to be with the Lord he loved and served for so long. Our prayers and deepest sympathises are with Denise, and their daughters Jill and Katherine and the rest of their family. A more gracious and kind Christian man you could not wish for and he will be greatly missed. Your Pastor and Friend, Melvin.

Have a look at the website https://lookforhope.org, it has lots of useful resources for those wondering about Christianity and God in the current virus situation.

Melvin has written a meditation for us entitled "Getting heavenly minded". Read it here.

If you're still sad that our Colin Buchanan concert couldn't go ahead last Friday, join us this afternoon for The Great British Colin Concert Tea Party
at 3pm over on the St John's Facebook page.
Bring a cup of tea or cup of squash, grab a biscuit, and join the Mitchell Family for fun & games and everything Colin including concert memories.

Sun 19th April

We'll be broadcasting services on our video page at 10.30am and 6.30pm today as we join together in worship.

You can download the "Keep on Keeping on" family pack for this week here: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_On_Session_4.pdf

Here are some questions to help you think through the sermons:

Morning: Luke 12:13-21 The one with the most toys loses

  • How contemporary is this story? What lessons are there for us?
  • How much attention are we giving to material things? What difference has the present crisis made to our thinking and behaviour?
  • What is the prevailing view of how happiness is to be found and how does this contrast with the teaching of Jesus?
  • What choices are you going to make which will echo into eternity?

Sat 18th April

Join us tomorrow for our broadcast services on our video page at 10.30am and 6.30pm.
We'll be having another Zoom meet up for a chat at 6pm, church members will get an email or text with details of how to join.

Thu 16th April

Melvin has written a meditation for us entitled "The antidote to anxiety". Read it here.

Wed 15th April

Mission Partner Updates

If you would like to receive the prayer letters of any of our mission partners then please get in touch.

The Blackers in South East Asia

The couple who were supporting us with childcare have made the difficult decision to return to the UK and they arrived home safely on Friday. We are obviously disappointed, but it is the right decision for their family. We are hopeful that they will be able to return once restrictions are lifted and things return to 'normal'. In the meantime we continue to learn Thai from home over Skype, look after Anna, and now teach Banya from home too.

  • Please pray for us as we balance all of these things, and please pray that God will use this time to strengthen us as a family and to teach us more about Himself. 

Derek, Jane, Gabriella & Luka in Spain

We have been on lockdown in our flat for 4 and a half weeks - only Derek goes outside for groceries. Kids have homework every day sent from their school (except for Easter holidays). Ministry, we are busy with Sunday meetings, men’s group, women’s group - all done by Zoom. We are currently using the Life Explored Course. We have several non-Christians joining us for different meetings. 
  • Pray for Derek’s health in general, neck and ear which is quite inflamed. He was due to go for another operation on his ear. This has been cancelled due to COVID-19. 
  • There was a fire at the office and warehouse of GBU and Andamio just before the lockdown. Around 160,000 Euros' worth of damage was done. Pray that we may be able to raise funds for the staff workers affected and funds to start publishing again.

The Hunts in South East Asia

It's Khmer New Year, the biggest festival here. It's been cancelled, people are to go to work and have the holiday replaced later in the year. So for the holidays all travel between provinces is banned to prevent the spread. All the borders are closed and there are no flights anywhere. We are doing fine, no illness and all coping.

  • Pray for wise government decisions, for people's livelihoods and health. Praise God for giving strength for each day and pray for opportunities and revival.

The Pett family - Working for MAF in Cairns, Australia

COVID-19 has impacted us here in Cairns and had significant effect on MAF's global operation, with around only 20% of our normal services possible at this time. Some staff are unable to leave for home assignment, and others unable to return. Staff who are more vulnerable to the disease have been withdrawn before travel restrictions became widespread. 
We hope and pray that blanket restrictions on flights in some countries will be replaced with special permission to fly humanitarian aid and health workers.  We have developed a number of protocols to prevent being carriers of the COVID-19 infection and protecting our staff.
There are also new ways MAF has been able to serve. In Mareeba, our engineers have designed and fabricated protective enclosures to be used in the local hospital when caring for infected patients.
We hope and pray that you are adapting to the 'new normal', finding ways to remain connected to family and friends, and discovering new opportunities.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-8
Caroline G - Central and sub-Saharan Africa
These countries have increasing numbers of confirmed cases of COVID-19, and very little medical care for the general public. The rule of thumb under normal circumstances is: “If you can’t pay for treatment or medicine, you will die”. In the current crisis of Coronavirus outbreak, this is still the situation.
Many African countries have closed their borders, imposed curfews during the night, shut down all shops, factories etc, apart from essential food supplies, and there is limited public transport. This means that, in the cities and towns, most people will not have any income at all, and there is simply no safety net of social security.
Across the entire African continent, the UNDP reports: 
“There are 10 million people displaced in Africa and 6 million refugees. There are only 17 percent of people who have some kind of social protection system.”
In Chad, there is 1 doctor for 5,000 people. As of 15th April, there are 23 confirmed cases of COVID-19. This number is growing very quickly, from 2 cases last week. 
  • Pray: For COVID-19 to stop spreading in Chad and that people will understand how they themselves can help prevent its spread;
  • That many people will cry out to God for mercy AND FIND IT in Jesus.
  • Pray for Christians in Chad, and throughout Africa to trust God and to be powerful witnesses to their fellow citizens who suffer. 
  • Ask God to deal in mercy with Chad and other African nations, as the economic, social and long-term health situation will be affected. 
  • Pray for those expatriate Christian workers who have evacuated the country on the last flights. 
  • Pray for Caroline’s Pastor, Hassane, and her church in Chad. Pray for her friends Maimouna, Sadiye, MZ, and her Chadian Mum Jacqueline. 
  • Pray for the translation teams who are translating health booklets on COVID-19 into local languages. 
  • Pray for Caroline herself, living with Diane in Sutton. Pray that she will trust the Lord’s plans for her future, in the uncertainty of the Corona outbreak. Caroline had been moving toward returning to Chad in October this year, but this is now in question. Ask the Lord to guide her about what He wants her to be doing and where she should live until she returns, once the UK situation calms down. 
  • Above all, pray that God will be glorified and draw many to Himself.

Let us all say, with the Psalmist I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust.”  Ps 91:2

Tue 14th April

How are you getting on learning Hebrews 12? This took Kay several takes - send us your videos of you doing it better!

Mon 13th April

Melvin has written a meditation for today, "Godly Submission". You can read it here.

Sun 12th April

Happy Easter! Join us online for our Easter Day services: a family friendly service at 10.30am and an Easter Praise service at 6.30pm. See our video page.

If you'd like to watch the Happy Easter video from the morning service again, it is here: https://youtu.be/GRbtK36wOA8

For families we have an activity ideas sheet for you to download, click here.

Sat 11th April

Tomorrow is Easter Day, and we will be broadcasting a family friendly service at 10.30am and an Easter Praise service at 6.30pm See our video page. In the morning there'll be a new Easter message  from Melvin and in the evening a new sermon from Scott.

From 6 - 6.30pm on Sunday we will be attempting a Zoom meet up for the whole church to see each other.

Thu 9th April

Melvin has written a meditation and prayer for today, "Honouring Jesus". Click here to read it.

Today is Maundy Thursday. We aren't broadcasting a service for today, but last year's service is available here: https://youtu.be/ELRMOm55rTE

Tomorrow on Good Friday we will be broadcasting a special service of meditations and music at 10.30am, based on last year's Good Friday service. 

John Piper has today released a free book 'Coronavirus and Christ'. Listen to what he has to say about it in this interview. The book itself can be downloaded in ebook or audio form from the Desiring God website.

It's important for the ongoing work of the church that our giving continues during this time, if your financial situation allows you to. Read more here.

Wed 8th April

Melvin recommends the article "Coronavirus19 - What's it for?" by Paul Helm.

Tue 7th April

If you're following our memory verse videos, here are the actions for Hebrews verse 3! Can you do all three verses yet? Don't forget to send us your videos!

Mon 6th April

Melvin has written a meditation and prayer for today, "Kept by God". Click here to read it.

Pete (along with his assistant Isaac) has recorded a reflection on Sunday morning's sermon for Riverside Church which you can watch below.


Sun 5th April

We'll be broadcasting services on our video page at 10.30am and 6.30pm today as we join together in worship.

Here are some questions to help you think through the sermons:

Morning: Luke 11:1-13 "The God who loves to answer prayer"

  • What holds you back from praying? In what ways does this teaching of Jesus help overcome these?
  • What difference does it make to think of prayer as ‘work’?
  • Why is it important to start with God in our thinking about prayer rather than ourselves?
  • Jesus is addressing his disciples and has in mind communal prayer as well as individual prayer. How might we encourage one another on to pray together?

Evening: 2 Corinthians 2:5-3:6 "The minister who cares"

  • Why is it important to welcome back a repentant member of the church, even if he or she has erred seriously?
  • What are the dangers of self-pity and what is the antidote?
  • What difference will it make to your life to see that for good or ill your witness is having an effect on people?
  • What is the ultimate effect of Gospel ministry? How can we support each other in this goal?

Sat 4th April

Tomorrow we will be streaming our broadcast service at 10.30am. This will be a mix of prerecorded songs from previous services, with new sections from Melvin and others in the church family. The sermon will be "The God who loves to answer prayer" (Luke 11:1-13)

At 6.30pm we'll be broadcasting a different service to help us worship together even though we are separated.

For families, download our Family Worship Pack for this week, "Keep on keepin' on", using Hebrews 12 v1-6: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_on_Session_3.pdf

It'd be great to set aside time each Sunday to do this together.

If you missed last week's pack it is here: http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_on_Session_2.pdf

Christian Medical Fellowship have produced a prayer guide to help us pray for the healthcare workers on the frontline of the Covid-19 pandemic. Download it here.

Fri 3rd April

Have a listen to this Podcast interview with John Lennox. It's very helpful in being firm in our faith and thinking how we might engage with unbelievers at this time. https://youtu.be/nLMJKoHowzI 

Thu 2nd April

Melvin has written a meditation and prayer for today, "Get Real". Click here to read it.

Here are some updates from our Mission Partners around the world - please keep them in your prayers.

Ali and Cathy in Cambodia

Watch the reality of sanitation in Cambodia: https://youtu.be/2Pbo6lzdhNs

  • Praise God that the population in Cambodia is very young, which means hopefully less deaths from COVID than if the population was older.
  • Praise God that Cambodia is receiving expertise from China regarding the virus.
  • Please pray for the families on Silk Island, for their protection from the virus and poverty, and that they would be diligent with their therapy as we cannot visit them.
  • As always, we are still studying Khmer. Now that this is by Skype/WhatsApp, it’s even more challenging! Please pray.
  • Please continue to pray for Ali’s work on the national treatment guidelines and for good contacts at the Ministry of Health. This is obviously not a priority for them now.
  • Please pray for Hope School. We are concerned that for all international schools it will be particularly hard to recruit teachers for August, which could leave significant gaps in the curriculum. These past few weeks, for example, all our science teachers have left permanently.
  • Pray for God’s mercy on Cambodia, and for many to turn to Him.

John & Temple in South East Asia

The lock-down measure varied among different regions, and we are blessed to live in a small city where only a dozen confirmed cases were reported, which means the virus hasn’t gone far enough to cause a serious outbreak here. With strict measures taken, there has been no further domestic case since as early as February. Yet for some other cities like Wuhan the situation took much longer to get better.

We thank God for the overall relief of the epidemic across the country. And while it is heart breaking to see the coronavirus spreading rapidly worldwide, we should be assured that there will be an end – not only this pandemic but also all the chaos and sufferings resulted from the fall of Adam.

Temple found it hard to focus on Jesus in the early stage of the lockdown as she was overwhelmed by all kinds of information on social media. As a result, her daily routine and her mental status were seriously affected. Things began to change when she started reading helpful books and spent less time on social media.

Please pray for:

1.    the students to fight with laziness, apathy, and indulgence (video games, TV show binge, social media etc. ) especially when they are alone.

2.    the church to be able to meet together again. Before the coronavirus, the authorities had already tried to stop house church meetings with various plausible excuses (for example, impeding fire safety). Our concern is that, after the situation gets better, the Government might still ban house church meetings on the pretence of public health.

3.    Temple to explore new ways to serve the students during the COVID-19 outbreak. She has started an online book group for the fellowship, in which members are supposed to share the Christian books they are reading at least once a week. It’s been going well so far, thanks be to God.

Derek & Jane French in Spain

Lock-down is much more severe in Spain. They are on day 20 of being in the flat. Only Derek has been out for meds and groceries.

The Mum of a good friend of theirs died of the virus after 4 days in hospital and they are not allowed to bury her.

Church has moved onto Zoom and there is good engagement.

God is opening new opportunities to share Christ as the sure and certain hope that comes through knowing Him becomes more noticeable.

They have started an online ‘Life Explored’ course.

For their full bulletin: https://mcusercontent.com/5aa2094ef93b5eae426c96585/files/8fd33d4c-3159-467b-8001-321c28a558ff/French_bulletin_April_2020.pdf

Weds 1st April

Tonight we'll be joining together in prayer at 8pm using our Central Meeting prayer broadcast. You can watch it here.

Melvin has recorded a new message for us. You can read the text of it here.

Tue 31st March

We hope you enjoyed beginning to learn Hebrews 12:2 on Sunday - here are some actions to help you learn it!! Can you do both verses yet?


Mon 30th March

Melvin has written a meditation and prayer for today, "Our God reigns". Click here to read it.

This article is also worth a read: "Coronavirus - responding like Jesus" https://cmfblog.org.uk/2020/03/13/coronavirus-responding-like-jesus/

Heather Payne has spotted a new song from the Gettys which is brilliant. It's called "Christ our hope in Life and Death". Perhaps we can sing it together when we get back to church? Listen here

Sat 28th March

Don't forget the clocks go forward tonight! If you forget, you might miss our broadcast service at 10.30am tomorrow. This will be a mix of prerecorded songs from previous services, with new sections from Scott and others in the church family. At 6.30pm we'll be broadcasting a different service to help us worship together even though we are separated.

For families, download our Family Worship Pack for this week, "Keep on keepin' on", using Hebrews 12 v1-6:  http://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_on_Session_2.pdf

It'd be great to set aside time each Sunday to do this together.

If you missed last week's, it's here:

Fri 27th March

Melvin has written a meditation and prayer for today, "The calm in the midst of the storm." Click here to read it.

Thu 26th March

Another interesting article to read : "When Corona makes us more like the New Testament": https://thinktheology.co.uk/blog/article/when_corona_makes_us_more_like_the_new_testament

Wed 25th March

We have been contacting our Mission Partners around the world to ask how we can pray for them in their situations. Do remember to pray for our Mission Partners – events like this emphasise worries around separation from family as well as local difficulties. We’ll share more news as it comes in.

Dave & Jen Pett: "David is now working from home, Graham is getting gradually better from his gut problem but has just lost his job due to the current situation. Jonathan’s job is ramping up as everyone is desperate for Internet connections and all his wedding plans are very tricky, not knowing when things will settle down again. I (Jen) have been sick for the past week but we managed to organise two ladies' (Know your Bible) events just before group gatherings were banned. Please also pray for our elderly relatives in the UK - we feel especially far from family with all the measures being put in place making travel very hard."

Cathy & Ali Hunt: "We are in a situation similar to the UK. Our schools are closed, some cinemas and restaurants closed. People here are scared of white Europeans now because some tourists came, bringing the virus. There are only 50 official cases but the real number is probably higher. We as OMF members are not being evacuated at this present time. Many other families and teachers have returned to their home countries. We have been inside since last Saturday except for walks around the block and going for groceries and essentials. Mostly we are coping fine so far. Thank you for your prayers. We are also praying for the UK and its situation.

All religious gathering stopped here too.

Ali played drums for them today (Sunday), they used FB live, just the band and Pastor. Then this evening we joined live our home church in Scotland on YouTube."

Phil & Vicki: "Here there is increased suspicion and some Westerners are not being served in shops etc."

Derek & Jane French: "Working from home, streaming church services. Vanessa is back home in N Ireland and concentrating on translation work."

Melvin would like to recommend to folk the following link- a brilliant rendering of ‘The deep, deep love of Jesus’- for our encouragement: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLTu1xv2-Us

Tue 24th March

Melvin has recorded a video message for us. See here for the video and here for the text of what he says.

Heather, Sam and Kay are putting together some videos to help us learn memory verses together! Check out the first one here which we made just before lockdown. Look out for some more to come...

https://youtu.be/3jd78BEyFXk or here on the website (scroll down and click on the video to play it).

Last night's announcement may have caused some to feel isolated, lonely, sad or fearful. However we are grateful that we are not left alone - that the Holy Spirit is with us and continues to strengthen us.

We will be continuing to live stream services and the Central Prayer Meeting, as well as putting out resources for folk to use at home, and we will "meet" in small groups using apps such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Zoom.

If you have specific needs, do contact Shirley via email: info@stjohnnewland.org.uk.

Melvin recommends this article from Mark Oden at The Gospel Coalition: https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/things-coronavirus-teach-us/

Mon 23rd March

Melvin has written a short meditation for us: "When the centre doesn't hold". Read it here

Sun 22nd March

This morning's service video can be viewed here. The video will be live streamed again this evening at 6.30pm.

A Persian translation of the reading and sermon in this service can be viewed here.

Sat 21st March


From Geoff:

It has been a strange week where much that we think of as 'normal' has been tipped on its head. As I said on Wednesday at the prayer meeting from Psalm 34:8 -  Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. As staff we have been blessed and encouraged by all that we hear happening among the congregations to connect people together, to serve one another, and to point one another to Christ.

Tomorrow we can tune in to the St Johns livestream on YouTube via our website www.stjohnnewland.org.uk/video or if you're using a smart TV or other device you can use this link to watch directly on youtube: https://tinyurl.com/rm4s67w ( https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQ0k5yqN9gikrGiCG8Y3UBQ/live )

The special service will be streamed at 10:30am and repeated at 6:30pm.

Heather and Kay have been busy making a Family Worship Pack to help families keep worshipping and trusting in Jesus whilst we can't meet together in person, see the section below for details.

Please let Shirley know if you are aware of anyone who needs help at this time 01482 342690 or.

Fri 20th March

In the current situation of not being able to meet together at church, Kay, Sam and Heather are putting together a family worship pack each week. We will upload a pdf link for you to do with your families when you can, but maybe set aside time each Sunday to do this together.

Our first series is going to be called "Keep on Keepin" on’, looking at Hebrews 12 v1-6. We’re basing it on a book called Dig-in Discipleship. It can be found here: https://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Keep_On_Session_1.pdf

We hope you find it a useful resource to keep worshipping and trusting in Jesus whilst we can't meet together in person.

We've also put together a list of resources which you might find useful during this time which can be found here: https://stjohnnewland.org.uk/downloads/Resource_list.pdf 

If you've got any comments or ideas about other things we can provide during this time, please let one of us know!


Melvin has written a short meditation for us: "God’s hand is sufficient." Read it here

Thu 19th March

Melvin recommends this article by Albert Mohler : "The Humbling of Civilization: Praying for the Mercy of God".

The text messaging system is now working again, the next time we send a text it will come from 07520 619511.

Wed 18th March

Melvin has written a short meditation for us: "God’s grace to us leads to gratitude to him. This is the basis for our security." Read it here


We are sorry our text-sending system went wrong tonight and only people with surnames at the start of the alphabet received texts. But don't panic, we have put new rubber bands on and will have it working again shortly.

If you missed the Central Meeting video, watch it here.

As there will be no gathered meeting for our Central Prayer Meeting this evening, we will be showing a roughly 30 minute video with prayer points and presentations.

There will be a text sent out around tea-time with information on how to access the Central Meeting video. The information will also be put on social media and here on the website.

If you didn't receive the first text yesterday, please send your mobile number to Shirley in the office - 01482 343658 or info@stjohnnewland.org.uk for it to be added to the database.

Tue 17th March

From Melvin: As Christians we wish to act responsibly in accordance with the direction of our Government and for the well-being of our neighbour. And so we have taken the decision to cancel all church meetings from Wednesday 18th March until we receive further direction. This will include all our smaller gatherings - children’s groups, home groups, mid-week meetings and Sunday services.

Click here for more information in Melvin's letter to the church family on Tuesday 17th March.

Colin Buchanan has decided that his UK tour will not be able to go ahead at this time and hopes to rearrange for next year. If you have bought tickets, we will contact you to arrange refunds.

Sun 15th March

Wednesday at 10 will be postponed until further notice.

Click here for Melvin's letter to the church family on Sunday 15th March.