Like many churches we are looking at ways we can support our congregation and community. We have introduced online worship, prayer meeting and bible study. Please see the ‘Online Worship ‘ page.
Prayers and Reflections during the Coronavirus pandemic.
You might like to use a prayer or a reflection from the material below to find a place of inner calm. You may especially find these useful after listening to a news bulletin, or before you go to sleep for the night, or if you are concerned about someone in your family or friends affected by coronavirus or the measures being taken to avoid spread.
If you are looking for advice in these difficult times then you may wish to contact the Citizens Advice Bureu who are operating an online and telephone support service – https://www.citizensadviceedinburgh.org.uk/
Though persons may find themselves having to self-isolate or know of others who must, we can take strength from the fellowship we share in Christ, which connects us wherever and in whatever circumstances we find ourselves. It is no little thing, to know we are being prayed for and remembered, especially during times of challenge. So let us pray for one another, continue with that ‘unusual kindness’ towards one another and be careful to follow the advice we receive.
From our Minister, the Right Reverend Colin Sinclair, Moderator of the General Assembly:
A prayer as we face the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
In our hour of need we turn again to you, for we have nowhere else to turn.
We put our faith in you, because you have proved your faithfulness time and again.
We reaffirm our love for you because you have never let us go.
We thank you that you are not distant from us.
but have drawn near, in your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
He has shared our life, tasted our death and defeated it;
He understands our worries and our fears.
Help us to respond as your children now.
We pray for this pandemic spreading across our world,
remembering all who have lost loved ones.
and praying for those seriously ill at this time.
We uphold the National Health Service.
as it responds to this added pressure on its already overstretched services.
We pray for doctors and nurses and all in the caring professions,
who work to help and support people as best they can.
We remember those working behind the scenes.
testing samples, confirming results, giving information to patients.
We uphold others trying to understand this virus better.
working to create an effective remedy.
We pray for our Governments in Westminster and Holyrood,
as they work with the best medical advice to guide us on how we should respond and what action we should take.
We pray that these guidelines might be taken seriously.
and that all would put them into action.
May this crisis bring out the best in us, not the worst.
Help us to live by faith and not by fear; to build bridges not barriers,
and to resist all who would speak ill of any other group.
May we not forget our responsibility to one another,
not least to the vulnerable and voiceless in our communities.
Help us to find ways of keeping in touch and offering reassurance.
to those with underlying health issues;
for any who feel particularly vulnerable or in danger at present.
As the virus spreads we pray for the disruption it causes to normal life,
bringing new fears and anxieties:
We pray for those who have been laid off as their work disappears;
for financial hardship for individuals and businesses;
for the impact on the economy and pensions, when austerity has already left its mark.
We pray for those whose trips, both for business and pleasure, have been cancelled;
and others where events, long anticipated and planned for, have been postponed;
for those making contingency planning for home based work or child care or exams.
May our inconvenience not blind us to others’ loss.
We remember those.
who cannot visit loved ones in locked-down care homes;
for the elderly whose social contacts have been severely curtailed;
help us to find creative ways of keeping in touch,
of assuring them they are not forgotten or ignored.
May congregations find new ways of living though this time.
May we not forget our faith, but draw strength from it.
So may our worship be heartfelt,
our fellowship deepen and our service increase.
God of grace and God of mercy,
hear our prayers at this time.
Strengthen us, by your Spirit, so that:
we may carry on our lives as best as we are able,
looking out for others,showing love in action,
being faithful in prayer, and bringing encouragement, hope and peace;
always trusting in you our Rock and our Redeemer.
These prayers we bring to you.
in Jesus’ name.
The Rev Angus Matheson, Interim Head of the new board of Faith Nurture at the Church of Scotland sent on a prayer from the Revd Louise Collins, of Hertfordshire, quoted by the Bishop of St Albans:
Dear God our Shield and our Defender, guide and protect my neighbour in this time of health emergency; deliver them from all harm and may your love and care ever grow in this place. Through Jesus Christ, Our Lord, Amen.
From our sister congregation at Davidson’s Mains:
Pray for one another, for our nation and for our world at this time of challenge. Pray particularly for wisdom for leaders making difficult decisions, for those working on research and development relating to a vaccine and a cure, and for the medical staff caring for those who are ill. Pray for all who are anxious, that they will know the presence of our loving, Sovereign God. Amen
From John Duncan, Joint Session Clerk at Palmerston Place Church
“I was reading this evening a verse that I felt seems to speak to the current Coronavirus worries. Deuteronomy 31:8 – “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged”. This reminds us how time and again throughout the Bible we are told “fear not”. At such times as these it is good to remember the Lord’s continuing presence and faithfulness?
From Caroline Hare, member at Palmerston Place Church:
Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.
By Helen Howarth Lemmel (1863-1961)
From Gregor Innes, Elder at Palmerston Place Church:
We do not know what the future holds with COVID-19 in our country and world but we do know who holds the future and we must encourage as many as possible to look to God, our strength and refuge.
God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.
The Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Psalm 46:1-3 & 7 (New International Version)
From Rev Bill Taylor, Interim Moderator.
A personal word – it’s hard to find you cannot visit someone, because they are in a nursing home where visitors are restricted to one. I’m finding that out at the moment as I am not the nominated visitor for my Mum.
In lots of ways people are faced with anxiety and concern at the moment. When we cannot visit someone it can help to write letters, or make a telephone or even a video call, using social media etc. Sometimes when there’s only a little we can do it’s then we remember the most important thing of all – to trust in God’s constant love which is there in every moment of every hour. “My peace I give to you,” Jesus said at a time of heightening challenge (John 14:27). May we take time to sit with Jesus and know the peace he gives, as we live each day remembering our loved ones and all our neighbours in our prayers.
From a member of the PPC Congregation
Dear Lord, Help us to trust in you, we are very scared. You have been there in the past but we have never faced this. Please make our community realise how serious this is and abide by guidance. Help us to help. In Jesus name, Amen.