Rembrandt 1606-1669, The Return of the Prodigal Son

“While Einstein’s theory of relativity may one day put Earth on the intergalactic map, it will always run a distant second to the Lord’s Prayer, whose harnessing of energies in their proper, life-giving direction surpasses even the discovery of fire.” – Kurt Vonnegut  1

This autumn we will explore this powerful Lord’s Prayer anew, beginning this Sunday with the words of invocation, ‘Our Father’ (Matthew 6:7-13). Why do we call God ‘Father’? What does it mean? And what does it not mean? 

The doors of the sanctuary will be open for worship at 10:30 a.m. (Please see the post under ‘Special Events’ in the column to the right for the protocols and shape of the service). The service will also be live-streamed, active just after 10:20 a.m. with organ music for meditation, commencing with the Entry of the Scriptures at 10:30 a.m. – https://youtu.be/lcVLSjh_1Ys The Order of Service can be found at the end of this post.

Once the service has ended, a recording will be available on our channel shortly after the live-streaming has ended – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzEy41z3sqfRm8X_lLfKGUA 

Free parking is available Sunday mornings in the surface civic lot off Queen Street behind St. Andrew’s, and on the streets of the neighbourhood – please note that time-of-day restrictions north of Queen are not enforced on Sundays. For accessible entrance to the sanctuary, please use the ramp by the door along Princess Street.

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Amidst much continuing uncertainty and anxiety, we begin a new congregational year with a focus upon one of the foundations of Christian faith, one that I see symbolized so movingly in this drawing of Van Gogh. 

My eyes are drawn to the hands of this man, entwined, and they make me think of prayer. Not the position of prayer, but the relationships of prayer. I think of prayer involving two hands, one hand being mine and the other being that of the Holy One holding mine, holding me, holding us. Prayer is a relationship with God, intimate. Prayer is the assurance we know in Christ, that we are loved with a love that will not let us go. These weeks of autumn we will explore our lives through the prayer that Jesus taught us, the Lord’s Prayer.

The doors of the sanctuary will re-open for worship at 10:30 a.m. (Please see the previous post for the protocols and shape of the service). The service will also be live-streamed, available at 10:30 a.m. Sunday morning and anytime after at … https://youtu.be/vUQgX0h5wkQ

Free parking is available Sunday mornings in the surface civic lot off Queen Street behind St. Andrew’s, and on the streets of the neighbourhood – please note that time-of-day restrictions north of Queen are not enforced on Sundays. For accessible entrance to the sanctuary, please use the ramp by the door along Princess Street.


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Being introduced to the dynamics of live-streaming!




While online participation will continue to be offered, the sanctuary of St. Andrew’s has been opened for Sunday morning worship. The service will not be as we knew it before the pandemic began, but the Elders are now able to offer an opportunity to all for whom this is appropriate.

Great care has been taken to ensure guidelines of public health authorities are followed. Please see below a letter that was distributed to the congregation providing full details. In summary, these include …

– three doors only will be open for entrance to the church: along Clergy Street, the door at the top of the stairs by the canon and the door in the tower; and along Princess Street, the door at the top of the ramp for those with accessibility challenges
– keeping physical distance from those in front, once in the door you will be asked to provide your name (and contact information, if visiting)
– the wearing of face masks at all times in the building is mandatory
– you will be ushered to a seat, filling the front pews first
– there will be no congregational singing or choir: to ensure no sharing of materials, the lyrics to hymns and scripture passages are included in the bulletin
– you will be asked to leave from the same door in which you entered, beginning from the back pews
– we are asked to leave the sanctuary directly to avoid close proximity to others in the narrow aisles at the back or in the foyers, and we will have no opportunity for fellowship within the church facilities

For all the limitations and constraints involved, the Elders are thankful that God has brought us thus far, and we are able to offer this opportunity of praise and worship. 

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Road with Cypress and Star – Vincent Van Gogh, 1890

This morning we conclude our consideration of the Christian faith through the art & life of Vincent van Gogh. Scripture reading, sermon and hymns all invite us to consider life as a ‘journey’, a theme also evoked in Van Gogh’s painting ‘Road with Cypress and Star’.

We will also celebrate the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, so you are invited to prepare with some bread, a cup, and perhaps a candle.

We warmly invite you to join us on Sunday morning 
with Video at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzEy41z3sqfRm8X_lLfKGUA
and with Podcast at
https://anchor.fm/st-andrews-presbyterian-church-kingston

Advance notice
Next Sunday it is our hope that the sanctuary will be opened for worship but online participation will continue to be offered, available live at 10:30 a.m. (and anytime after) on the same Youtube channel used now.
For those interested in returning to worship in the sanctuary, a letter of preparation will be posted next week. In the meantime, please be aware that this will be just an initial step towards worship as we have known it – masks and physical distancing will be necessary throughout the service, and no congregational singing will be possible.

The Sower, 1888. Vincent van Gogh

We continue to explore dimensions of the Christian faith through the Bible, and the art & life of Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh. We will read one of the ‘songs of ascent’, Psalm 126, and hear a parable of Jesus about a sower and the promise of God bringing a harvest (Luke 8:4-8, 11-15). We will hear some inspiring organ music by the Dutch composer Sweelinck and sing some wonderful hymns, concluding a classic one from the Netherlands, ‘We praise you O God, our Creator, Redeemer’. 

We warmly invite you to join us on Sunday morning 
with Video at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzEy41z3sqfRm8X_lLfKGUA
and with Podcast at
https://anchor.fm/st-andrews-presbyterian-church-kingston

Vincent van Gogh, Iris, 1889 – National Gallery of Art, Ottawa

Celebrating the Sacred.

This is the theme we will be exploring over these last three weeks of summer. And we will be doing so through the work of the artist Vincent Van Gogh, whose paintings were infused with the Christian spirituality of his life and faith.

This sermon will look at one of the last and one of the first paintings of this artist – Iris and The Potato Eaters – that pick up dimensions of the presence of God both in creation and amongst the humble ones of humanity.

Our worship will include hymns ‘Praise my soul, the king of heaven’ and ‘Joyful, joyful, we adore thee’.

We warmly invite you to join us this Sunday morning 
with Video at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzEy41z3sqfRm8X_lLfKGUA
and with Podcast at
https://anchor.fm/st-andrews-presbyterian-church-kingston

NOTE: the Government of Canada is matching donations until end of day Monday August 24 to support the people of Beirut after the terrible harbour explosion they have suffered. If you are able to support this outreach, I encourage you to contribute through Presbyterian World Service and Development … https://presbyterian.ca/pwsd/2020/08/05/beirut/

We begin this new week of grace considering another of the parables of Jesus, that of the Talents as found in Matthew 25:14-30. Are you living a life of extravagant faithfulness? Make your life count!

The Rev. Nancy Hancock will lead us in praise, prayer and sermon this morning. We warmly invite you to join us
with Video at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzEy41z3sqfRm8X_lLfKGUA
and with Podcast at
https://anchor.fm/st-andrews-presbyterian-church-kingston