Every Sunday at 11 am we have a Family Church Service.
We are continuing with a hybrid Church/Zoom Service, with worship led mainly from the church, but occasionally from home (via Zoom) at the discretion of the worship leader of the day. Most of our congregation is now back in Church – as is our organist!
Hymns are played and sung in church (from behind masks) and those participating at home via Zoom can sing along. Those in church can see those at home on a TV screen and can follow the parts of the Service that are “Zoomed” on the TV screen as well.
We distribute an Order of Service and the Service Hymns via e-mail and include the Zoom log-in details which change for each service. If you would like to receive the weekly invitation e-mail, please let us know with an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
On the first & third Sunday of the month Holy Communion is celebrated at this service. Participants in church no longer need to bring their own bread.
An edited video of our weekly Service can be viewed on our Services Page.
July – On behalf of the Elders
Dear Members and Friends,
This July we will be celebrating the church’s 88th birthday and the URC’s 50th Anniversary jointly on Sunday 17thJuly. We have invited the other 6 churches in the South Herts Local Area Group to this event. This was at the suggestion of the Synod to all local area groups as a means of getting together and getting to know one another.
Potters Bar Congregational Church has come a long way since it was founded in 1934 when it was part of the Congregational Union of England and Wales (CUEW). It has seen many changes, culminating in our characteristic seven-sided building together with Tilbury Hall and the joining of the two with the building of the vestibule. In 1971/72 the church along with many other Congregational churches and all Presbyterian ones, was asked to vote on a Union, to overcome their differences and realise they had more in common and could do greater things together rather than separately. The then leaders, Revd John Huxtable, the Revd Arthur Macarthur and the leading theologian Revd Leslie Newbigin must have spent many hours in committee rooms to hammer out what was to become the Basis of Union and to see it pass into law by Act of Parliament in 1972.
Some Congregational churches did not join and went on to form their group within the Free Church Federal Council.
It is interesting to note that I know of at least five of our current members who actually took part in that vote. I wonder if you can guess, who they are?
Will we still be here in another 50 years? Who is to say? Looking at the figures in 1972 and now in 2022 the URC has lost approx’ 95% of its attendees. We as a local church have faired a little better, only losing 80%. We are at present a small band of Christians keeping the denomination going in Potters Bar and seeking a new minister to share with Christ Church URC Hatfield.
Whatever is to happen in the ensuing years the URC will not be lost as long as the word church still appears in the Oxford dictionary- just look at the three middle letters.
On behalf of the Eldership
Stir up, the gift of God which is within thee…
Hurrah!, the summer has come!, although the weather may not always oblige us by showing the sun. Technically I am correct in that the solstice has passed on the 22nd of the month of June. At the solstice the earth is the closest it gets to the sun, so it is warmer; and then we begin to move away from our sun into deep space again. Tell me, did you feel us go ‘’round the corner’’ and begin to move away”? In our journey around our sun at one point we may momentarily be moving toward the centre of our universe, and we are told that there is a black hole there, about a million light years across, Wow!
Last month I posed you a question , and got a nil response, I wonder, did you think about it? I am still open for suggestions through the two month summer break (!) although I am conscious of the fact that our thoughts and prayers may be on other things at this time. The peoples of the Ukraine do need our prayer support and together we are probably aware that the devil is incarnate and abroad within the Kremlin.
The other week we were watching ‘’Songs of Praise’’ and Aled Jones and Catherine Jenkins were in one place whilst the singing came from various venues depending on where the programme compilers had a previous recording of the required song. I seem to remember that the Lake District and Winchester Cathedral are not likely to share a common congregation, sometimes I do get confused with my TV and that which it presents me with; however these two are really great presenters and I do enjoy their singing, their faith and their whole presentation. It was probably one such switch which minded me to talk on the song below – and not that being sung at the time by that ‘sham’ congregation! So, let’s look at this song and for its inspiration.
I know not why God’s wondrous grace
I know not why God’s wondrous grace
to me has been made known;
nor why – unworthy as I am –
He claimed me for his own.
But “I know Whom I have believed;
and am persuaded that He is able
to keep that which I’ve committed
unto Him against that day.”
I know not how this saving faith
to me He did impart;
nor how believing in His word
wrought peace within my heart.
I know not how the Spirit moves,
convincing men of sin;
revealing Jesus through the Word;
creating faith in Him.
I know not what of good or ill
may be reserved for me-
of weary ways or golden days,
before His face I see.
The song was written by D W Whittle (in the 1800’s) and it is based on the letter that Paul wrote to Timothy, his ‘’son’’ in the Lord. Last month I draw some thoughts from the Gospel accounts of the gift of the Comforter – the Holy Spirit of Jesus. In the passage Paul is urging Timothy to be steadfast in the faith, to endure whatever comes; and to develop his Faith in the surety of Salvation.
Toward the end of the New Testament writings there are a collection of letters, mostly letters to Congregations of the New Churches to encourage and help the members of these developing churches, or to individual new Christians for similar reasons. I urge you to include and read ‘’the letters’’ as part of your own Christian development as they contain much good guidance.
The words of the song above are inspired by Paul’s second letter to Timothy and come from chapter 1 and verse 12. The full letter will reward you with a worthwhile read in your daily QT. My own, personal baptismal verse was from Chapter 1 and verse 6.
‘’I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God which is within thee’’.
And, shortly after this event I became ‘’5090532, Sir ! ‘’.
The Word kept me in good stead; it was not a wasted two years as I learned new skills and I met some great Sky Pilots, one of whom was a scientist and later became the senior Pastor of Millmead centre, Guildford.
I leave you with this verse as guidance for the destiny of our Church at PB – and please read the whole letter yourself for a fuller understanding of the mind and heart of Paul, the Apostle.
May God bless you as we settle into the summer and its time for our relaxation and rebuilding.
And let us start to build the people of Power, here in PB!
In His Name,