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.

Thursday, 26 January 2023

Prayers across the centuries

We continue our series on Prayers across the centuries with Dag Hammerskjöld 1905-61 was a Swedish economist and diplomat who served as the second Secretary-General of the United Nations from April 1953 until his death in a plane crash in September 1961. As of 2022, he remains the youngest person to have held the post, having been only 47 years old when he was appointed.

Hammarskjöld's tenure was characterised by efforts to strengthen the newly formed UN both internally and externally. He led initiatives to improve morale and organisational efficiency while seeking to make the UN more responsive to global issues. 

Hammarskjöld admonished himself with the words, “Pray that your loneliness will spur you into something to live for, great enough to die for.” Still, other entries are short and beautiful, such as, “A landscape can sing about God, a body about spirit.” Hammarskjöld  lived his faith. One can sense that his book Markings is both for himself, and in the entries towards the end of his life, for posterity. Hammarskjöld does not fit the profile of the modern, well-connected public scholar who is known for more than just their academic work. Yet, he allowed his faith to inform his secular public work. He served as a conscience for the United Nations, and thus is a forerunner of the modern public scholar.

His prayers mirrors that of Psalm 63 “O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary.”

Hence he prays;

Thou who art over us,

Thou who art one of us,

Thou who art—

Also within us,

May all see thee—in me also,

May I prepare the way for thee,

May I thank thee for all that shall fall to my lot,

May I also not forget the needs of others,

Keep me in thy love

As thou wouldest that all should be kept in mine

May everything in this my being be directed to thy glory

And may I never despair.

For I am under thy hand,

And in thee is all power and goodness.

Give me a pure heart—that I may see thee,

A humble heart—that I may hear thee,

A heart of love——that I may serve thee,

A heart of faith—that I may abide in thee.

To love life and men as God loves them——for the sake of their infinite


to wait like him

to judge like him

without passing judgment,

to obey the order when it is given

and never look back—

then he can use you——then, perhaps, he will use you.

And if he doesn’t use you—what matter. In his hand,

every moment has its meaning, its greatness, its glory,

its peace, its co-inherence. 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.