Last Sunday worship at Dunnottar Church was led by Dunnottar Elder, Hazel Paterson. In her talk to the children, she began by reading the story of the Hungry Caterpillar-which entertained the whole congregation-the small and the not so small! Her reason for choosing to read this was to link to the story of Nicodemus who came to visit Jesus because he was hungry—not for food but to learn more about what Jesus was teaching as he went about. Nicodemus couldn’t understand when Jesus told him that he would not be able to see the Kingdom of God unless he was born again. Hazel told the children that the caterpillar spun a cocoon and eventually broke out of it and emerged as a butterfly, not just an improved caterpillar but as a totally new creature. If we accept Jesus into our hearts, we also become a new creation, not just an improved version of what we were before.

In Scotland, 2018 is the Year of Young People and is intended as an opportunity for generations to come together and celebrate our nation’s young people. It is intended as a platform for young people to give them a stronger voice on issues which affect their lives, showcase their ideas and talents, and create a more positive perception of them in society. To contribute to this, Dunnottar Church Elder Ros Marshall had invited Isla Davies, a pupil at Mackie Academy to come to the service and talk about her involvement in various Christian youth groups in Stonehaven, Catterline and Aberdeen. Isla is a member of Scripture Union and has attended many SU camps. She is also one of 12 young people from across Scotland who is on the SU Student Executive which meets three times a year and acts as a sounding board for trustees and senior staff, as well as feeding in creative ideas for development of ministry activities. Isla is a busy young person and manages to do all of these activities along with studying for her National Qualification exams.

In her reflection for the adults, Hazel spoke in more detail about Nicodemus. Not much is known about him but he was an intelligent man of influence – a Pharisee and a member of the Jewish ruling council. He visited Jesus at night, leading Hazel to speculate that he didn’t want to draw attention to his visit. He knew his Old Testament but, as she had said to the children, he couldn’t understand the concept of being born again. Jesus used the example of the wind as he tried to explain it to Nicodemus. We are born again when we commit our lives to Christ and seek his guidance and strength. Hazel ended with a quote “May I let go of those things keeping my life from being the best it can be and may I find renewed peace.”

Next Sunday,3rd June, morning worship is at the South Church ay 10.30am and all are welcome.

Although most of the church organised activities are taking a break over the summer, the Friendship Coffee continues every Thursday morning at St Bridget's from 10-11.30am.All are welcome to go along for a coffee and homebake and a friendly chat!

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