Risen and Ascended

As they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, ‘Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven?

The Season of Easter is almost over and we are in Ascension-tide, which ends at the Feast of Pentecost. Forgiveness is implicit and explicit in the accounts of the Ascension. The fact that the resurrected Christ appears to his disciples at all is very significant. This bunch who when the going got tough, fled and denied Jesus, usually got things wrong and were a motley crew, aren’t having their noses rubbed in their cowardice and faintness of heart. Rather his first words to them are, “Peace be with you”. Just think about it, He must have forgiven them to even bother to come to see them at all. But He comes to them and in fact to all who open their hearts to Him, in mercy. The Ascension simply underlines this mission of mercy.

The ascended Jesus, who sits at God’s right hand, describes a God who’s vulnerable and approachable. When we turn to God in times of distress or temptation we’re not calling out to a deity who’s aloof and can’t relate to what we’re going through. God is right in there, He’s been there, done it, He’s got the tee-shirt as they say. That being the case He is able to comfort us not only by identifying with our pain but also by assuring us that affliction won’t have the final word. All because the Risen and Ascended Christ is with us and that means that nothing can separate us from his love.

For all of us the Ascension is more about letting go than reaching out and grasping. The question for you and me is not, “How do we Ascend?” That’s already been accomplished, through the Crucifixion, Resurrection and Ascension of Our Lord. The question is: “What’s pulling us down?

What do we need to let go of? Fear, anger, or resentment can weigh us down. The need to be right or in control is a heavy burden to carry. Self-righteousness, jealously, or pride are very effective anchors. Being caught up in perfectionism and the need to prove we’re good enough can become all-consuming. On the other hand it may be indifference or apathy. Many lives are also tethered by addiction.

What is it that holds you down and denies you a share in Jesus’ Ascension?  The gravity that keeps us down is not creation, the world, the circumstances of our lives or other people. The gravity that holds us down lies within us. So we each need to look at our lives and identify the places of gravity, and not despair. The very things that hold us down also point the way to Ascension. So our joining in with Jesus’ Ascension begins not by looking up but by looking within.


Charities Shop Summer Opening

During June, July and August

St Finnbarr’s Charities Shop

will be open even longer

From 10:00am until 4:00pm

There will also be a themed stall at the

Dornoch Community Markets

on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays

from 9:30am until 1:00pm

Made with Love

Women’s conference – a day of worship, prayer, testimony & fellowship focusing on
our Identity with Christ.

10:00am – 4:30pm on 15th June 2019

Capstone Centre, Alness

£10 – lunch included

Tickets from Capstone


Pilgrimage Route between Tain and Kirkwall

At a time of growing interest in the reviving of ancient pilgrimage routes, the North of Scotland is playing its part. A national organisation, the Scottish Pilgrimage Routes Forum, is overseeing the development of a route from Tain to Kirkwall, linking the medieval shrines of St. Duthac and St. Magnus.

At a meeting of interested parties, held in Tain in April, the route was named the Northern Pilgrims Way. It will largely avoid roads, following footpaths and tracks suitable for walking and cycling. Much of it will provide the traveller with magnificent coastal scenery, as well as experience of the unique Flow Country in Caithness and Sutherland.

It is hoped that publicity will attract not only dedicated pilgrims, intent upon travelling the whole way, but will also provide the opportunity for visitors to enjoy walking a section of the route to add interest to their holiday in the area.

The Pilgrimage Church in the centre of Tain will be the focus for the start of the journey. It contains a medieval statue of St. Duthac, preserved by the people of Tain for nearly six centuries. Visitors to the Church are welcome when Tain and District Museum is open, all weekdays from April to October, plus all Saturdays in the summer.

Revd Sandy Sutherland at Umbrella in Golspie

Umbrella is a Christian social club in Golspie, set up to deepen friendships and build bridges within the Christian Community. Umbrella is independent, not part of, or affiliated to, any denomination of the church.

At Umbrella, Christians meet for a cup of tea or coffee, enjoy the company of old friends and the chance to make new ones. It is open to anyone, whether they go to church, (any church), or not.

Venue: The Stag’s Head (Main St, Golspie) each Monday 10.30 – 12 noon
Cost: Free! (“Donations box” for contributions towards expenses).

Revd Sandy Sutherland

On Monday June 3rd,

Rev. Sandy Sutherland

will be at “Umbrella” to give a presentation titled

‘Revelation in Creation’.

Sandy is an excellent photographer, especially know for his pictures of birds. His plan is to show pictures of the creation as well as to say something about his personal testimony.

This is an excellent opportunity for anyone who would like to come along and try “Umbrella”, they would be very welcome.

For further information:

or speak to James.