3’Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead’
1 Peter 1:3
Our Easter Sunday meeting was led by our Divisional Leaders Major Mark & Linda Herbert
Major Linda began the meeting by leading us through the Bible reading from John 20: 1 – 8 We then watched the video presentation of
Sharing the good news – See what a morning https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z0aKC3KxTb0
The Congregation Sang Song 218 Christ the Lord is risen today , supported by the Band , and while we were singing , some of the children distributed Paper crosses and Cards with images of the Tomb ( with attached mini eggs ) , which were eaten as we listened to the Matt Redmond song and reflected on the Cross as a thing of Beauty
Song Thank you for the cross
The Message from the Singing Company was the Song “Hallelujah” .
Major Linda asked some of the Young People to join her in looking the poster we all had a copy of , in the YP Spot “What a difference!”
The Children spotted many differences, and had their own thoughts on what it all meant .
Our next congregational song was
Song 49 O Lord my God (Tune 488 How great thou art) , supported by Emma Davis on the piano
Which was followed by The Bible Reading 1 Peter 1: 3 – 9
The Message from the Songsters was ~ Risen King
Major Mark Herbert delivered the Message , and he started by referring to how we all may get discouragement in our lives, such as his analogy to biting the ear off his chocolate Easter bunny, only to find it was hollow !
Mark went on to say that no matter what is happening in our lives , we can always rely on the Living hope in the resurrection of Jesus & our God who Forgives/Heals & Redeems . Mark focused on verses 3 & 4 particularly , highlighting Gods mercy and the promised inheritance in Heaven that will never perish , spoil or fade.
Our final two songs of the morning were
Song 169 Here is love vast as the ocean – Tune 369 Here is love (PIANO)
Song 276 Thine is the glory
Tune 746 Maccabeus (BAND)
Easter Praise & On the Sofa
With Majors Mark and Linda Herbert
Our Afternoon meeting was a chance for us all to get to know our Divisional leaders better , Major Ian asked them questions about their childhood, their faith and career
Songs were chosen by members of the congregation
The first Song was – 228 Low in the Grave he Lay (Chosen by Margaret)
Tune 905 Up from the Grave
Sofa 1 – in this period of questioning we found out a little bit about their current role, and Major Linda said the area of the country the cover stretches from Bognor to Dartford encompassing some 35 Corps. Major Mark told us they try to visit every Corps at least once , and then ask to visit at other times ( to be part of the congregation or lead a meeting if requested) .
Mark told us he was born in Teddington to a non Army family, but was sent to the Sunday School with his two Brothers & two Sisters. He surprised his family by saying when aged six that when he was older he wanted to be like the Captain..
Linda told us that she was born into an Army family in Twickenham ,and the family soldiers at Teddington , during her childhood she had thoughts of being a teacher initially , but found she didn’t really enjoy her school life so she didn’t follow that path..
Mark & Linda met and grew up at Teddington Corps
Bandmaster Nigel Lockwood introduced the Band Message , which was the March ” He lives ” , but only after recalling a visit by Chatham Band to Teddington when Major Mark Herbert was the Bandmaster.
Sofa 2 – We next learnt that Mark had been the Bandmaster at Teddington and worked for the MOD in London before he went into Officer training . Linda was the Young Peoples (YP) treasurer when aged 14 & Young Peoples Sergeant Major ( YPSM) aged 17 , and she recalled how much invaluable teaching she had learnt in Sunday School as she grew up .
Around the Age of 15 Mark tells us he was making his decision about officership , with great support from the Corps Sergeant Major (CSM ), he stopped playing Rugby (which had been a big part of his life) and committed to his faith
Linda told us she came to faith as a young child (six or seven) , but her call to officership was triggered by a particular evening meeting led by Cadets from the Training College .
Our next Song: 261 Lord the Light of your love ( Chosen by Gill)
Tune 822 Shine Jesus Shine
Sofa 3 Mark & Linda were not in College at the same time , but were married soon after Linda was commissioned , Major Ian asked what was their first date and we had a discrepancy ..Mark believes it was a visit to see Enfield Band play at the Rink, Linda believes it was a trip to see the musical ” Glory” .
As Officers they have held Corps Postings first at Hayes , and then in Perth in Scotland , and they both agreed they enjoyed Corps officership. Following this was a period at the Training college, pastoral support for 2nd year students . ( during this time Linda trained as a teacher ) .
The Songsters sang ” There’s Still power In the Blood”
Sofa 4- after the period at the training college Mark & Linda were posted to Upper Norwood Corps for 6 years , and a then followed a time working for the Candidates unit .
Major Ian asked what Mark & Linda thought were the Challenges for Officership & the Army in general , and it was commented that people need to be asked to consider officership more and for it to be part of pastoral conversation. Mark said that he feels the Army has stopped asking the question of people.
Favourite Scriptures . For Linda it was Ephesians 3 and for Mark it was Galatians 6 v 7-9
Our Final congregational song was
Song 229 O Joyful Sound
Tune 415 He Lives