Weekly E-Pistle: Fourth Sunday of Easter - Douglas Congregational United  Church of Christ • Douglas UCC

The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want

Alleluia. Christ is risen.

He is risen indeed. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.



Alleluia Christ is risen.

The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia.

Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ

He has given us new life and hope

by raising Jesus from the dead.


Almighty God

to whom all hearts be open

all desires known

and from whom no secrets are hidden;

Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts

by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit,

that we may perfectly love you

and worthily magnify your holy name

through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Our Lord Jesus Christ said: The first commandment is this: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is the only Lord. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.”

The second is this: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these. Amen. Lord, have mercy.

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God is love and we are God’s children.

There is no room for fear in love.

We love because God loved us first.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith.

God our Father, we confess to you

and to our fellow members in the Body of Christ

that we have sinned in thought, word and deed,

and in what we have failed to do.

We are truly sorry.

Forgive us our sins,

and deliver us from the power of evil,

for the sake of your Son who died for us, Jesus Christ, our Lord.


May the God of love and power

forgive you and free you from your sins,

heal and strengthen you by his Spirit

and raise you to new life in Christ our Lord. Amen.

sung by Dougie Byers


O God,

the light of whose truth stretches out

to those who go astray

give your grace to all who profess themselves Christians,

that they may cast what is harmful

and pursue all that gives life;

through Jesus Christ, our Lord,

who lives and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, world without end. Amen

PSALM 23 read by Billy Dewar Riddick

The Divine Shepherd

A Psalm of David.

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
 He makes me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside still waters;
he restores my soul.
He leads me in right paths
for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I fear no evil;
for you are with me;

your rod and your staff—
they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
my whole life long.

Psalm 23:1 The Lord is My Shepherd - Free Bible Verse Art Downloads - Bible  Verses To Go

1 Peter 2: 19-25 read by Annette Beagrie

For it is a commendable thing if, being aware of God, a person endures pain while suffering unjustly. If you endure when you are beaten for doing wrong, what credit is that? But if you endure when you do good and suffer for it, this is a commendable thing before God. For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you should follow in his steps.

“He committed no sin,
    and no deceit was found in his mouth.”

When he was abused, he did not return abuse; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but he entrusted himself to the one who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that, having died to sins, we might live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. For you were going astray like sheep, but now you have returned to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.

1 Peter 2:21-22 - Priorities


JOHN 10:1-10 read by Rev Chris Wren

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to St John chapter 1- beginning at verse 10

Glory to Christ our Saviour.

Jesus the Good Shepherd

“Very truly, I tell you, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold by the gate but climbs in by another way is a thief and a bandit. The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep hear his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice. They will not follow a stranger, but they will run from him because they do not know the voice of strangers.” Jesus used this figure of speech with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.

So again, Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and bandits, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the gate. Whoever enters by me will be saved and will come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

John 10:11-18 (NLT) -- The Good Shepherd and His Sheep⠀ ⠀ “I am the good  shepherd. The good shepherd sacrifices his life f… | The good shepherd, I  am awesome, Sheep


“I am the gate for the sheep”, says Jesus and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.” Jesus calls us by name. Our names matter, and we get a bit tetchy when people get our names wrong. Our names hold meaning and they have been specially chosen for us, either because it is a well- loved name, or it has strong family connections. Our names are personal, and they are part of us. On the other hand, numbers to describe someone are deliberately impersonal.

Does the number 007 mean anything to you? Yes of course, James Bond! What about the number 24601 does it mean anything to you? It was the number of the famous prisoner Jean Valjean in the musical ‘Les Miserables’. Strangely enough this number 24601 is now a term to describe those who are punished extensively for a small crime. In those days numbers were given to prisoners of war, convicts and slaves, nowadays numbers are used for almost everything.

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Just think for a moment of how often we are identified with a number? At the bank you have account numbers, PIN numbers to access your accounts, and credit card numbers. The taxation department identifies you by your Tax File Number. You have a Medical card number, and in hospital you are often just a number on a medical list.

When you enquire about your gas, electricity or phone bill the first thing you are asked is, “What is your customer number?” When you go to the passport office or motor tax office you are required to pick up a number and you will be served when your number is called. If you are in business, you need a business number; if you are in schools, you have a roll number, if on internet sites and for email you need usernames and passwords. If you are pulled over by the police for speeding, the policeman is only interested in numbers – your licence number, your registration number, and the number on the radar gun indicating how fast you were travelling. We could go on and on. Numbers are so impersonal. Isn’t it nice when someone remembers your name, isn’t it nice when you are known by name rather than by a customer account number?

He Calls Us by Name Special Offer — To Unearth

Our name is known by Jesus. We are never a number in his eyes. Indeed, when in John’s Gospel we hear Jesus say “I am the good shepherd. As the Father knows me and I know the Father, in the same way I know my sheep and they know mewe have that kind of warm feeling when we know someone cares for us, when we know that someone is interested in what is happening in our lives, and is able to empathise and encourage us. To Jesus we are personal and we matter. He sees himself as our shepherd and whether we like the term or not we are his sheep.

What is a Group of Sheep Called? [Answered] - RaisingSheep.net

When we look at a flock of sheep, we see exactly that – a big flock. That’s all. I don’t see an individual sheep. I see sheep. All are alike, none are different. But not so with the Shepherd! He sees the sheep differently. To Him, every sheep has a name. The one with thick white wool, that’s Amos. And the one with one ear up and the other down, that’s Simon. And the small one with a black patch on his leg, he’s an orphan with no brothers. He’s Joseph. When you see a crowd, you see exactly that – a crowd-a mass of people. You go into a huge stadium, you will see a mass of people – not persons, but people-a large herd of humans, that’s all you might see! But not so with the Shepherd! To him every face is different. Every face is a story. Every face is a child. They are His own. Every child has a name. The one with long hair, that’s Sally. The short and fat one, he’s an orphan with no brothers, that’s Harry. Here this morning do we know everyone by name… maybe we do but more than likely we don’t but God knows everyone here by name. The Lord says in Isaiah 49:16a “See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.” Amazing! “Engraved-cannot be taken off! Your name is on God’s hand. Your name is on His palm. Have you seen your name in some special places? Maybe-on a certificate or diploma! Maybe on a foundation stone, if you are the founder of a business or charity! Or maybe you’ve heard your name mentioned by some important people – your school principal, by a famous star. How do you feel? No doubt you feel very honoured-very special!

You are special? Do you believe it? I read a true story of a friend and his four- year- old daughter. There was a thunderstorm, and the friend was concerned that his daughter might be frightened by it, so he rushed up to her bedroom to check on how she was doing; lighting was flashing, and thunder was roaring outside. But when he got to his daughter’s bedroom and looked inside, he saw his daughter standing on the window- sill, leaning spread- eagle against the glass. What are you doing? He shouted at her. Jennifer what are you doing? I think God is trying to take my picture. Now there’s a girl who knows how special she is in the eyes of God! Do you see yourself like that young girl special in God’s eyes?

THINK FOR A MOMENT – your name is on God’s lips, and on God’s hand? Can it really be so? Perhaps for some of us, you’ve never seen your name honoured. You felt neglected. You can’t remember the last time someone mentioned your name with kindness. If so, it may be difficult for you to believe that God knows your name. The truth is-he does. Your name is written on his hand. Your name is spoken by His mouth. He knows all about you. He made you. God, the greatest One in the Universe, knows you by name and has your name engraved upon His palm. Do you feel unimportant or insignificant? Jesus wants to tell us today how much God treasures each one of us. Jesus did not say, the Shepherd calls the flock. He calls the sheep and He calls them by name. He calls them His own. Wow! He really does know us, and what is interesting is he says that we know him and that we recognise his voice. Recognising voices is something we do instinctively. When we pick up the phone more than often, we are able to identify the caller by their voices. We recognise people in shops by their voice when they call out to us. This recognition comes from spending time with people, listening to them and chatting with them, so that subconsciously we know their voice. Here’s a true example of this from Scotland.

A group of white sheep

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It’s from a story that I have mentioned some time ago, about a shepherd that lived in the Scottish Highlands. This shepherd had a daughter, and he would take her with him when he went out on the moors to take care of the sheep. The thing that the little girl liked best was to hear the call of shepherd. His voice sounded so free and beautiful as carried across the valleys of the moors. As the years passed the little girl became a beautiful young woman and went off to one of Scotland’s great cities–Edinburgh or Glasgow. It was there that she was determined to build a life. On her arrival, she would write back home to her parents every week. But as life began to take her by the hand, her letters soon dropped off in their frequency and soon there were none.

Rumours begin to filter back home to that shepherd and his wife that their daughter had started hanging out with some unsavoury characters and they were having a very negative influence on her life. One day one of the boys from back home ran into her in the city streets and she acted as if she did not even know him. When the old shepherd heard this, he gathered a few things together and dressed in his rough shepherd’s clothes went to the city to find his daughter.

For days on end he looked for her. He looked everywhere: the rows of houses, the markets, the taverns, and everywhere in between to no avail. So after all of this searching he became very discouraged with the thought that he had lost his daughter to this city. As he started the long trek back home, just as he was on the outskirts of the city, he remembered that his daughter had always loved to hear the voice of the shepherd calling out to the sheep. So he turned around and on this quest motivated by his sorrow and his love, he began to stalk the streets. His voice rang out the shepherd’s call. The citizens of the city all looked at him as if he had gone mad. It wasn’t too long as he walked the streets of one of the degraded neighbourhoods that inside of one of those houses, his daughter, sitting among some unsavoury characters, who had led her astray, heard his voice. With great astonishment on her face, she heard that call of the voice of the shepherd, the voice of her father calling out to her. She leaped up and rushed out to the street and ran into the arms of that old shepherd, her father. It was then that he took her back home to the highlands of Scotland and brought her back to God, to decency and modesty. This is a moving example of what happens to those who can hear the voice of a shepherd.

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Can we hear the voice of Jesus the shepherd calling us today? Admittedly there are so many voices clamouring for our attention in the world today- adverts, television, radio, texts, e-mails, face-book, retail stores and markets and so the list goes on. Radio and television stations transmit twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week; but we only hear them when we turn the receiver on and tune it in. Failure to hear the signal doesn’t mean the station isn’t transmitting. Likewise, God is constantly transmitting His voice to His sheep, but few are turned on and tuned in. Most Christians are busy pleading with God in prayer to transmit when the problem is with their receivers. The first thing we need to do is fix our receivers — believe that God is already speaking and start listening.

However, that takes time, effort, and focus. The average Christian’s lifestyle is so busy, it isn’t conducive to hearing God’s voice. For instance, what is your typical answer to the question, “How are you?” Many of you probably answer something about- oh, fine but very busy! People might say –I’m rushed off my feet or I am knee deep in things! All of us seem to be busier than ever, and that’s one of the BIG reasons we don’t hear the voice of the Lord better. We’re just too busy.

Secondly and this is very important, most often we mistake the voice of the Lord for our own thoughts. We think that God’s voice is no more than our own thoughts. This is so important to note that the voice of the Lord comes to us in our own thoughts. The Lord speaks to our spirits, not in words, but in thoughts and impressions. Then our spirits speak to us in words like, “I think the Lord wants me to do this or that.” The Lord doesn’t typically say “You do this or that,” but He will impress your spirit to do something, and then your spirit says, “I

think I should do . . .” Therefore, we often miss the leading of the Lord, thinking it’s our own thoughts, when really it is God’s voice to us. So, if you’re going to hear His voice, if you’re going to feel His nudge—the key to success is sensitivity.” Sensitivity to the gentle voice whispering to us-that sensitivity comes when we slow down and tune in to the already broadcasting waves, emitted from God all day every- day.

You are precious in God's eyes. | You are precious, Daughters of the king,  Prayers for healing

So today especially if you are feeling unloved, neglected, used by others, ignored, of little esteem or value then stop and remember God loves you more than you know and he knows you intimately by name. You are precious to him. You matter and he invites you to listen to his voice, to get know his voice and then to enjoy great fellowship and joy with him. The more you know his voice, the more I guarantee you will feel a sense of belonging and security. The more you listen to his voice, the more you will desire others to share in this marvellous joy. The more you listen to his voice, the more you will invite others to come and join his flock. So, what is God saying to you—tune in this week and listen. Amen

Christ The Savior Lutheran Church


We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty maker of heaven and earth,

of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,

the only Son of God,

eternally begotten of the Father,

God from God, Light from Light,

true God from true God,

begotten, not made,

of one substance with the Father.

Through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation

he came down from heaven;

by the power of the Holy Spirit

he became incarnate of the Virgin Mary,

and was made man.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

he suffered death and was buried.

On the third day he rose again

in accordance with the Scriptures;

he ascended into heaven

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again in glory

to judge the living and the dead,

and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit,

the Lord, the giver of life,

who proceeds from the Father.

With the Father and the Son,

he is worshipped and glorified.

He has spoken through the Prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.

We acknowledge one baptism

for the forgiveness of sins.

We look for the resurrection of the dead,

and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Praying Moms – LRPC HOME


God our strength

We put our trust in you.

Jesus, Good Shepherd we come to you,

the true guardian of our souls.

Keep your church focussed firmly on you and our kingdom.

Draw us closer in unity and fellowship in your name.

God our strength

We put our trust in you

Jesus the good shepherd - Believers4ever.com | Cover pics for facebook,  Facebook timeline covers, Timeline cover photos

Jesus the Good Shepherd,

we come to you our protector.

Give us courage to place our trust

in following your ways of peace

Draw the nations closer into a community of shared humanity.

God our strength

We put our trust in you

Jesus the Good Shepherd we come to you,

with the injured and the weak.

Protect and hold in your love all

who cry to you in pain and suffering,

distress and anger

Revive them in your mercy

and meet them at their point of need.

Break free of suffering | SPEAKZEASY

God our strength

We put our trust in you

Jesus the Good Shepherd,

accompany us in your work places,

in our homes and neighbourhoods,

and give us grace and wisdom in our dealings with people.

Lead us too in those times of difficulty and pressure

to green pastures with still waters

to refresh our hearts, minds and souls.

God our strength

We put our trust in you

Pin on Love You AlwaysR

Jesus the Good Shepherd,

We pray today from those

who need protection from themselves,

those who are caught up in different forms of addiction

and are powerless to break free.

Bring the right people to their aid

and lead them to wholeness of life.

God our strength

We put our trust in you

Jesus the Good Shepherd,

We pray for the people in Ukraine and Russia

asking for an end to this futile war.

We cry to you for peace and stability.

God our strength

We put our trust in you

Jesus the Good Shepherd,

you lay down your life for the sheep,

so that we might have salvation, hope and new life.

Gather us in our final hour to your eternal fold.

As you know us, so may we hear you,

call us by name into your kingdom.

God our strength

We put our trust in you

Jesus the Good Shepherd

we place into your hands

the things that we cannot do,

asking for serenity to accept the things we cannot change

courage to change the things we can

and wisdom to know the difference.

God our strength

We put our trust in you

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Merciful Father accept these prayers

for the sake of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord

who taught us to say together,

Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread.

Forgive us our sins

as we forgive those

who sin against us.

Do not bring us to the time of trial

but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.


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God the Father,

by whose glory Christ was raised from the dead,

strengthen you to walk with him in his risen life;

and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit

be among you and remain with you always. Amen

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Go or stay in peace to love and serve the Lord.

Alleluia! Alleluia!

In the name of Christ,

Alleluia! Alleluia!


St John the Evangelist, Dumfries, is a parish of the Scottish Episcopal Church also serving Methodist parishioners locally.


You can donate to St John’s by credit or debit card by following these links.

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Contemporary Service

Contemporary Service

The Contemporary Service is at 6pm, on the second and fourth Sundays of the month, followed by refreshments in the hall.


St John's Church

5 days 2 minutes ago

Sunday 16th June 2024 is our Eucharistic Service at 11: 00am. You are most welcome to come along. Be great to see you. There is no Choral Evensong at 6pm

St John's Church

1 week 4 days ago

Sunday 9th June 2024 is our Eucharistic Service at 11: 00am. You are most welcome to come along. Be great to see you. There is NO Contemporary Service at 6pm

St John's Church

2 weeks 5 days ago

Everyone is very welcome to come along to St John’s Church, Newall Terrace, Dumfries DG1 1LW, at 6pm this Sunday, 2nd June, when the choir of St John’s Church will

St John's Church

3 weeks 2 days ago

Everyone is very welcome to come along to St John's Church, Newall Terrace, Dumfries DG1 1LW, at 6pm this Sunday, 2nd June, when the choir of St John's Church will