Sunday 17th May

ORDER OF SERVICE FOR SUNDAY MAY 17h

Alleluia, Christ is risen! 

Our key Eastertide themes are of light out of darkness and newness of life.  The celebration colours of gold and white reappear in church decoration and vestments, emphasising the joy and brightness of this season of fifty days. 

During Eastertide we encounter the fullness of resurrection life through some of the most well-known and well-loved stories of Jesus, including his appearance before Thomas as Lord and God, accompanying others as a stranger on the road to Emmaus, and cooking breakfast for the disciples on the shores of Lake Galilee. In John’s gospel we are given the imagery of Jesus as Shepherd, and every day during Eastertide set readings from the Acts of Apostles remind us that this is our story too, as the first Christians discover how to recognise the risen Christ in their lives and in each other.

The Gathering

Opening Hymn

1.Thou, Whose Almighty word Chaos and darkness heard, And took their flight;
Hear us, we humbly pray, And, where the Gospel day Sheds not its glorious ray,
Let there be light!

2.Thou Who didst come to bring On Thy redeeming wing Healing and sight,
Health to the sick in mind, Sight to the inly blind, O now, to all mankind,
Let there be light.

3.Spirit of truth and love, Life-giving, holy Dove, Speed forth Thy flight!
Move on the waters' face Bearing the lamp of grace, And, in earth's darkest place,
Let there be light!

4.Holy and blessed Three, Glorious Trinity, Wisdom, Love, Might;
Boundless as ocean's tide, Rolling in fullest pride, Through the earth far and wide,
Let there be light!                                                                                                         John Marriott (1780-1825)

The Greeting

The Lord be with you.                        All  and also with you.

Acclamation

Alleluia.  Christ is risen.                     All  He is risen indeed. Alleluia.

Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.       All  He has given us new life and hope. He has raised Jesus from the dead.

God has claimed us as his own.         All   He has brought us out of darkness. He has made us light to the world.

Alleluia. Christ is risen.                        All   He is risen indeed. Alleluia.

Invitation to Confession

In baptism we died with Christ, so that as Christ was raised from the dead, we might walk in newness of life. Let us receive new life in him as we confess our sins in penitence and faith.       (cf Romans 6.4) 

Confession

Like Mary at the empty tomb, we fail to grasp the wonder of your presence.

Lord, have mercy.                               All   Lord, have mercy.

Like the disciples behind locked doors, we are afraid to be seen as your followers. 

Christ, have mercy.                             All   Christ, have mercy. 

Like Thomas in the upper room, we are slow to believe.

Lord, have mercy.                               All  Lord, have mercy.

Absolution 

May the God of love and power forgive you and free you from your sins, heal and strengthen you by his Spirit, and raise you to new life in Christ our Lord.    All     Amen.

The Collect

Risen Christ, by the lakeside you renewed your call to your disciples: help your Church to obey your command and draw the nations to the fire of your love, to the glory of God the Father. Amen.    

The Liturgy of the Word        

Acts 17.22–31

Then Paul stood in front of the Areopagus and said, ‘Athenians, I see how extremely religious you are in every way.  For as I went through the city and looked carefully at the objects of your worship, I found among them an altar with the inscription, “To an unknown god.”  What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you.  The God who made the world and everything in it, he who is Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in shrines made by human hands, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mortals life and breath and all things.  From one ancestor he made all nations to inhabit the whole earth, and he allotted the times of their existence and the boundaries of the places where they would live,  so that they would search for God and perhaps grope for him and find him – though indeed he is not far from each one of us.  For “In him we live and move and have our being”; as even some of your own poets have said, “For we too are his offspring.”  Since we are God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the deity is like gold, or silver, or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of mortals.  While God has overlooked the times of human ignorance, now he commands all people everywhere to repent,  because he has fixed a day on which he will have the world judged in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed, and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.’   For the word of the Lord, thanks be to God. 

1 Peter 3.13–22 

Who will harm you if you are eager to do what is good?   But even if you do suffer for doing what is right, you are blessed.  Do not fear what they fear, and do not be intimidated, but in your hearts sanctify Christ as Lord.  Always be ready to make your defence to anyone who demands from you an account of the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and reverence.  Keep your conscience clear, so that, when you are maligned, those who abuse you for your good conduct in Christ may be put to shame.  For it is better to suffer for doing good, if suffering should be God’s will, than to suffer for doing evil.  For Christ also suffered for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, in order to bring you to God.  He was put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit, in which also he went and made a proclamation to the spirits in prison, who in former times did not obey, when God waited patiently in the days of Noah, during the building of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were saved through water.  And baptism, which this prefigured, now saves you – not as a removal of dirt from the body, but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers made subject to him.   For the word of the Lord, thanks be to God.

Gradual Hymn        

1.Blest are the pure in heart, for they shall see our God;
the secret of the Lord is theirs, their soul is Christ's abode.

2.The Lord, who left the heavens our life and peace to bring,
to dwell in lowliness with us, our pattern and our King.

3.Still to the lowly soul he doth himself impart,
and for his dwelling and his throne chooseth the pure in heart.

4.Lord, we thy presence seek; may ours this blessing be;
give us a pure and lowly heart, a temple meet for thee.

vv1&3: John Keble (1792-1866), vv2&4 William John Hall’s ‘Psalms & Hymns’ (1836)

Gospel Acclamation

Alleluia, alleluia. 

Jesus said, “All who see the Son and believe in him may have eternal life; and I will raise them up on the last day. Alleluia, alleluia.    (cf John 6.40)

The Lord be with you.                                                                    All  and also with you.

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John.       All  Glory to you, O Lord.

John 14.15–21           

Jesus said to his disciples:  ‘If you love me, you will keep my commandments.  And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you for ever.  This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him.  You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you.  I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you.  In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live.  On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.  They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.’

This is the Gospel of the Lord.                                                         All  Praise to you, O Christ.

Sermon     follow link to this week's reflection

Affirmation of Faith  

Let us declare our faith in the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.

All   Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures; he was buried; he was raised to life on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures; afterwards he appeared to his followers, and to all the apostles: this we have received, and this we believe. Amen.   (cf 1 Corinthians 15.3-7)

The Lord’s Prayer

Rejoicing in God’s new creation, let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us:

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever.  Amen.     

Prayers of Intercession 

This morning we think of what Peter had to say in his reflection comparing the lockdown and restrictions of the war with the silent enemy we all now face.

Remembering the despair of the disciples locked down after the crucifixion of Jesus.

 

And we remember that Jesus stood among the disciples and said to them ‘Peace be with you’ and we think of Jesus standing among us, there for us in our hour of need

there to show us the way

 

We pray for our community at St Michaels for all the new ways that we CONNECT together, looking after each other, being there for each other looking forward once again to being able to take our peace out into the wider community and beyond.

 

and this morning in our hearts we remember and pray for those listed in our book of remembrance for this month.

Ellen Motion               Michael Vaughan        Joy Game                    John Crosby Pitcher

Colin Wright                Jamie Abbots               Pam Stubbings            Margaret Ann Wingrove

Clementine Eyles        Edna Turner                Paula Muncaster         Percy Hyde

Norman Turner           Clive Whitfield 

                     

We pray that this time may become a time of change of moving to new ways of working and new ways of doing church; of a renewed and real appreciation of the value of all our key workers; of moving to a cleaner and greener environment, that in this difficult time we may look forward rather than back.

Remembering from Corinthians

Love…bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.

Merciful Father accept these prayers for the sake of your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

Hymn

1.Jesus Christ is waiting, Waiting in the streets;
No one is his neighbour, All alone he eats.
Listen, Lord Jesus, I am lonely too.
Make me, friend or stranger, Fit to wait on you

2.Jesus Christ is healing, Healing in the streets;
Curing those who suffer, Touching those he greets.
Listen, Lord Jesus, I have pity too.
Let my care be active, Healing just like you.

3.Jesus Christ is calling, Calling in the streets,
”Who will join my journey? I will guide their feet.”
Listen, Lord Jesus, Let my fears be few.
Walk one step before me; I will follow you.

John Bell and Graham Maule

Blessing

God the Father, by whose glory Christ was raised from the dead, strengthen you to walk with him in his risen life; and the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit be among you, and remain with you always.                  All    Amen.

We are raised to new life with Christ. Go in his peace.  Alleluia, alleluia.              

Thanks be to God. Alleluia, alleluia.  

Recessional Hymn verse

Father, we love you,

we praise you, we adore you.

Glorify your name in all the earth.

Glorify your name, glorify your name,

glorify your name in all the earth.

 

Enriching the Christian Year (1993), Common Worship: Services and Prayers for the Church of England (2000), New Patterns for Worship (2002) and Times and Seasons (2006), material from which is included in this service, is copyright © The Archbishops’ Council.  CCL No 908682.