Fore Street Topsham, Exeter

Minister : Reverend Paul Collings BTh (Hons) : email : : Telephone : 01392 206229 : Mobile : 07941 880768

About Us

St Nicholas Methodist Church has existed on the present site for over 150 years since it opened in 1867.

We are a friendly community of believers where all are welcomed. We help each other to worship God, and strive to live more like Christ in service beyond the walls of our church building.

Part of the
Exeter Coast and Country Circuit of the Methodist Church.

Saturday, 26 February 2022

Celtic Saints - Cuthbert

As a boy Cuthbert was interested only in sports. He was agile, strong, and quick-witted, so he excelled at every sport he played. At the age of eight he boasted that he had beaten boys of twice his age at wrestling, running, and jumping.

One day he was playing in a field with a large crowd of other boys. when a child, seemingly no more than three years old, ran up to him. The little boy spoke with the gravity of a man, scolding him for wasting his time on idle games, instead of training his mind and body to serve God. Cuthbert burst out in mocking laughter and the boy burst into tears. Cuthbert tried to console him, but the boy stared him in the eye, and said: “You are a stubborn fool.” The words went straight to Cuthbert’s heart, and the smile faded

from his face. He embraced the boy, thanking him for his boldness, and the boy instantly stopped weeping.

Cuthbert gave up all sport, and went to work as a shepherd in the hills above Melrose. There he spent many hours of each day praying and studying the Bible. One night he was looking eastward to the coast, and he saw a shaft of light rising up into the darkness.The next day he learned that at that very moment Aidan had died. He became convinced that the light was a sign from God, calling him to be Aidan’s successor at Melrose Monastery Lindisfarne. After a number of years Cuthbert found himself at Lindisfarne although he yearned to live as a hermit.

Eventually Cuthbert became weary of his responsibilities at Lindisfarne, and he sailed to Farne Island, a rocky outcrop several miles out to sea. Using rough stone he built a small hut for himself, a chapel, and a guest house.

At first he depended on bread brought by visitors. But he wanted to grow his own food, so he dug a patch of ground and planted wheat. By midsummer the wheat had not sprouted, so he planted barley instead. This grew and ripened. But as he was about to harvest it, a block of birds flew down to devour it. Cuthbert called out, “Why are you eating crops you did not sow? Is your need greater than mine?” The birds flew off, and Cuthbert harvested the barley.

Some time later the birds returned, and began taking the thatch from the guest house to build their nests. He called out to them, and they flew away.

Three days later one of the birds returned, and landed in front of Cuthbert.The bird’s feathers were ruffled, and his head was drooping, as if begging forgiveness. Cuthbert was delighted, and forgave all the birds immediately. Shouting at the top of his voice, he invited the birds to return to the island. The flock swooped down, carrying lumps of pigs’ lard. Cuthbert kept the lard in the guest house, and polished visitors’ shoes with it, saying to them: “If birds can show humility, so should we.”


Father, source of all holiness, 

help us to live in mutual love throughout this day, 

for according to your Word, 

we must shine in the world like beacons of light.

This we ask through Jesus, the Christ, our Lord. Amen

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Community Groups Regularly Usiing the Church

Regrettably, due to the current restrictions, there are no community activities at the church premises.

Watch this space for news of when activities will restart.