The Melanesian Martyrs' Memorial Church of St Andrews

COVID-19 Update to Parishioners

COVID-19 Update to Parishioners

From Stephen

Last Sunday we held a very successful Zoom Service which enabled many of us to connect with each other.  Thank you everyone who joined in on this.  Zoom is a way we can all see or hear each other and worship together as part of a larger group. 

Each Sunday during the lockdown period we will be holding a Zoom Service at 9.00am.  This coming Sunday’s service link can be found below in blue.  It is the same link that we used last week.  You may have heard in the media some concerns about hackers getting into online services like Zoom.  Please note we are using a paid subscription which is secure. 

This Sunday as we come online prior to the service, you may want to bring your Coffee and Tea with you so that we can have Morning Tea together as people join in.  When we commence the service please activate your mute button so that we don’t have feedback, and everyone can hear.  The mute button is in the left-hand corner at the bottom of your screen.  Simply click this.

As this coming Sunday is Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week, I invite you to bring a Palm Cross to our service.  Below is a link which shows you how to make a Palm Cross.  Alternatively, you can bring a plant or branch or something else to represent a Palm Cross.  I also invite you to light a candle and bring a piece of bread and a small glass of wine, or something else to symbolically eat and drink so that we can share in this together even though we are apart.  Please note that we cannot have Holy Communion unless we are physically present with each other, so I invite you to watch Jo and I have Communion on behalf of the parish.  I will then invite everyone to eat and drink together as a symbol of our unity in Christ.  I will explain more about this at the beginning of our Service on Sunday morning. Please don’t worry if you don’t have a prayer book with you, I have mine and will do the best we can under the circumstances.  Attached is a service outline with responses and a hymn.  You may want to print this off before the service or have it up on your screen at the time.  Also attached are readings, intercession and a copy of my weekly sermon for the service. For those of you who are unable to join in the Zoom Service we hope you will still worship with us at 9.00am, and that you will light a candle, spend some time reading through the readings and my sermon and also spend some time uniting with us in prayer.

Below is a list of readings which can be used throughout Holy Week in your daily devotions, following the steps of Jesus each day.  On Maundy Thursday, 9th April, I invite you to light a candle with your evening meal and read John Chapter 13.  On Good Friday we will be holding a Zoom Service at 2.00pm which will end in silence until 3.00pm, the traditional time of Jesus death. You are welcome to bring a nail, or something to represent a nail to hold onto during the service. I will be sending a link out for this service next week along with our Easter Sunday Service at 9.00am.  Don’t forget that Sunday 12th April, Easter Sunday, is the start to daylight savings and that you need to put your clocks back one hour.

As I said in my message last week, over the next few weeks I will be endeavouring to be in contact with as many of you as I can.  However, if you need to contact me over this period of isolation please feel free to do so.  My number is 021 52 80 52.  I am also happy to talk on Face Time, WhatsApp or Zoom.

Also, if you are unable to get shopping please phone either myself or Marjon and we will connect you with someone who will be able to drop things off for you.  Thank you so much for the kindness of those who are already doing this for others.


Stephen Reflection for Lent 6 – Palm Sunday

The dual mystery of the passion is proclaimed boldly in our second reading from Philippians. In this text, Jesus, being in the form of God, took on the form of a servant. Let us view this not only as a description of the dual reality of the passion, but as a description of the dual reality of our calling as Christ’s disciples and the mystery of our faith. This dual reality is one of humanity and yet divinity, it is of servanthood and yet glory, it is of a loaf which is body broken and yet the bread of heaven, it is of blood that is spilled that is yet the cup of salvation. On Palm Sunday, let us have this mind among ourselves, that though we are in the image of God, we will not count equality with God a thing that we should grasp. Instead let us empty ourselves and take the form of Christ’s servants. Let us humble ourselves and be obedient bearers of the Cross. We can do these things because God has highly exalted us in our baptism and has bestowed upon us the name that is above all names, the name of Christ, that calls all our knees to bow, and all our tongues to confess always and forever that Jesus is Lord, to the glory of God.


Zoom Meeting Invitation

If you are a Parishioner and would like to join in on our 9.00am Service on Sunday please refer to the Parish Weekly Updated which was emailed to you.


Holy Week Daily Readings

Monday:  John 12: 1-11  Mary Anoints Jesus

Tuesday:  John 12: 20-36  Some Greeks Wish to See Jesus & Jesus Speaks about His Death

Wednesday: John 13: 21-23  Jesus Foretells His Betrayal

Maundy Thursday: John 13: 1-17, 31b-35  Jesus Washes the Disciples Feet


Daily Prayer Points

In your daily prayers I offer you these prayer points as a guideline:

  • Pray for our leaders, that they continue to show wisdom and compassion as they

guide us through these dangerous days

  • Pray for the frontline workers in every essential service, that they may have

endurance, patience, compassion and protection

  • Pray for those who are working to find effective vaccines for the virus, that they

may experience supernatural wisdom and creativity in their work

  • Pray for our those we know, and those we don’t, who are alone, that they may

know the peace of Christ Jesus

  • Pray for our families, that they may use this time to build loving and enduring



Other Notices

  •  Daylight Saving ends this weekend (ends at 3am on Sunday 5th of April). Clocks need to be put back one hour. A sleep in for everyone.
  • The Church building is closed to all until further notice. We are doing church together by staying home and connecting in different ways. Please note that no one is to visit the church under any circumstances.
  • Link to how to make a Palm Cross. You could also make this out of paper. How to make a Palm Cross
  • All Anglicans and all people of good will are called by the Archbishop of Canterbury to join in a world-wide action of prayer.  At 7 pm local time every Sunday that worship services are suspended, we are being asked to light a candle in our homes and pray with and for others. At this time Bishop Ross Bay will be leading Night Prayer through his facebook page for this if you would like to join him.  A number of people in the parish observed this last Sunday.
  • Another way to help with daily bible readings for us at home is Rhema’s Word for Today available on their web site or via the Word for Today mobile App. There is also the “Word for today” for younger readers. It is a daily spiritual Holy Bible based reading with ‘Soul Food” reflections. There is also Christian TV channels: Shine Freeview channel 25 & Sky 201 as well as Christian Radio Channels Life FM & Star.
  •  If you like to join the Parish Whatsapp group, a fabulous way of keeping digitally connected please contact me 021 52 80 52 or Marjon 021 020 19222. We have enjoyed seeing lots of exchanges of humour and helpful information.
  • The Vestry is meeting each Wednesday evening on Zoom throughout the Level 4 Period. The Course in Miracles Group also met last Tuesday on Zoom and will be meeting again on Tuesday 14th  If anyone would like to join this group please contact Stephen.
  • If you are aware of someone in our parish not on our Parish Emails, please contact Stephen or Marjon. We can only send emails to parishioners who have informed us of the updated email addresses and contact numbers. You also may know of people outside of our parish who may want to join us.
  •  Youth Group is being held on Zoom at 5.00pm on Sunday this Sunday. If you know of any young people who may like to join our Zoom Youth Group please contact Marjon through the parish email.  This is a great way for young people who may be feeling isolated to join with other young people.
  •  Easter Activity packs have been sent out to kids in our church community. Kids might be able to share some of their work at our Sunday Zoom Services. An Easter colouring competition is also included. Please colour, scan and email your colouring to: Prizes to be won, Closing on the 12th If you didn’t receive your pack as yet, please email me too and I will get it to you. Marjon


What if you thought of it

as the Jews consider the Sabbath—

the most sacred of times?

Cease from travel.

Cease from buying and selling.

Give up, just for now,

on trying to make the world

different than it is.

Sing. Pray. Touch only those

to whom you commit your life.

Centre down.


And when your body has become still,

reach out with your heart.

Know that we are connected

in ways that are terrifying and beautiful.

(You could hardly deny it now.)

Know that our lives

are in one another’s hands.

(Surely, that has come clear.)

Do not reach out your hands.

Reach out your heart.

Reach out your words.

Reach out all the tendrils

of compassion that move, invisibly,

where we cannot touch.


Promise this world your love–

for better or for worse,

in sickness and in health,

so long as we all shall live.


–Lynn Ungar 3/11/20


Thank you to Penny for sharing this.