A celebration event has been held to mark the launch of Merkinch Free Church. An event took place at Free North Church in Inverness on Saturday. Families, friends and the congregation of Merkinch Free Church joined together to mark the occasion.
Rev Chris Davidson opened the event with scripture verses from Philippians 4: 4- 7:
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Chris said: “We know that as a church plant, many people have been praying for us, they have visited us and supported our church plant so this service is to thank the Lord for each other, thank the Lord for his grace that a church has been planted in the scheme of Inverness as Merkinch and South Kessock.”
During the celebration Rev Andy Prime, of Gracemount Community Church and 20Schemes, spoke about Ephesians 2: 19 -22.
Andy said: “The God of heaven has a desire to make his home amongst his people…Today, in a place like Inverness, in the Merkinch, where does God dwell? Where can you meet with God, today?”
“Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
“The only Cornerstone for a healthy church is Christ Jesus himself. Christ is building people together. God uses people who are unlike us to make us more like him.”
He added: “Diversity in a church will always be a great challenge but diversity in a church is always a great catalyst for growth. If we are individually bricks -or stones- we are not perfectly manufactured square cut bricks. Just look at the difference between me and Chris. We’re rough rocks. We don’t fit together. But the cement that fits between our rough rocks is the grace of Jesus who saved us. It will be people who are unlike each other that God uses to make us more like him. We are being built together as a church. That will be the exciting thing as we’ll see this little church plant kick off tomorrow (Sunday).”
Andy concluded: “A house is not a home until the homeowner is home, and the church is not the church until God dwells among his people. It’s God that makes the church home.”
Services take place at Merkinch Free Church, on Madras Street, Inverness, on Sundays (2.30pm). A café is also held there on Thursdays.
A number of ministry collaborations have taken place to support the church including support from Free North Church (mother church), 20Schemes (ministry partnership) and Acts 29 (Ministry network).
Following the thanksgiving and celebration service, the church community gathered for food and a time to share together.