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Sunday 25th April 2021 – 4th Sunday of Easter – The Good Shepherd

 WELCOME

Whether you are a regular worshipper at St Andrew’s or have happened upon us by chance, you are welcome to share in our selection of prayer, scripture and music for today, the 4th Sunday of Easter, or ‘Good Shepherd’ Sunday. Our readings are from the Revised Common Lectionary, and the weekly reflection has kindly been provided by one of our regular preachers, Chris Limb.

OPENING SENTENCES

This is the day which the Lord hath made:

Let us rejoice and be glad in it!

Lamb of God, who takest away the sin of the world:

Have mercy upon us.

INTROIT HYMN – Loving Shepherd of thy sheep (tune: Buckland)

COLLECT

O God, whose Son Jesus Christ is the good shepherd of your people: Grant that when we hear his voice, we may know him who calls us each by name, and follow where he leads; who, with you and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

1st Reading – Acts 4:5-12

The next day their rulers, elders, and scribes assembled in Jerusalem, with Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family. When they had made the prisoners stand in their midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?” Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, if we are questioned today because of a good deed done to someone who was sick and are asked how this man has been healed, let it be known to all of you, and to all the people of Israel, that this man is standing before you in good health by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead. This Jesus is ‘the stone that was rejected by you, the builders; it has become the cornerstone.’ There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved.”

HYMN: Christ is our cornerstone (tune: Love unknown)

2nd Reading – 1 John 3:16-24

We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us — and we ought to lay down our lives for one another. How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help? Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action. And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have boldness before God; and we receive from him whatever we ask, because we obey his commandments and do what pleases him. And this is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. All who obey his commandments abide in him, and he abides in them. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit that he has given us.

GRADUAL PSALM – The Lord is my shepherd (Sir C. V. Stanford)

GOSPEL – John 10:11-18

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand, who is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away–and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. The hired hand runs away because a hired hand does not care for the sheep.I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again. I have received this command from my Father.”

HYMN – The King of love my shepherd is (tune: Dominus regit mei)

REFLECTION – Mr Chris Limb

ANTHEM: All we like sheep have gone astray (from Handel’s oratorio ‘Messiah’)

PRAYERS

Loving Shepherd, we pray today for the victims of the continuing coronavirus pandemic which has blighted the world for over a year now. We ask for your comfort and aid, especially for the people of India and any who who are particularly affected at the present time. Give strength and fortitude to all who are engaged in the ongoing battle against the disease; to the medical teams who are desperately trying to look after the sick and dying; to the scientists and researchers whose best efforts are supporting them; to the victims who have lost or are losing their own personal fight against their illnesses, and to those who are bereaved and having to face the loneliness of a future without their loved ones by their side. O Lord, heal the afflicted, comfort the bereaved and grant eternal rest to the departed in your heavenly kingdom.

Heavenly Father, we pray today for any who have wandered from the path of righteousness which you have prepared for them, and for ourselves when we erred and strayed from your ways like lost sheep. We acknowledge the powers of evil which surround us daily and our inherent weaknesses in resisting them. Renew in us a spirit to renounce evil and fortify us with your heavenly armour. We pray that it may be your will to enter the hearts and minds of those who engage in lives of crime, that they might see your light and turn away from darkness. We pray especially for victims of crime or injustice, for those who have been treated with inappropriate harshness, for the innocent who have been wrongly punished for crimes they did not commit, and for any who have died by their own or other’s hands as a result of the indiscriminate or unjust dispensing of punishments inflicted upon them, whether lawfully or otherwise. Bestow upon all humankind, we pray, love and respect for one another, and kindle in all our hearts a sense of justice and such a spirit of empathy with each other that we may live and thrive together in harmony, peace and unity without fear or discrimination.

These and all our prayers we offer up to heaven in the words our Saviour taught us, saying:

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.

And now may the God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the eternal covenant, make us perfect in every good work to do his will, working in us that which is well-pleasing in his sight; and may the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, rest upon us and all we love, this day and evermore. Amen.

HYMN – The Lord’s my shepherd (tune: Brother James’ Air)

ORGAN VOLUNTARY : A Meditation on Brother James’ Air (Harold Darke) played by Bill Stein on the organ at Third Baptist Church, St. Louis, Missouri.

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Sunday 18th April 2021 – 3rd Sunday of Easter

WELCOME

Today is the 3rd Sunday of Easter, and we welcome you to our weekly selection of prayer, scripture and music giving thanks, in unusual circumstances, for the lives of loved ones recently lost within the context of the joy of our own Saviour’s death and resurrection. Our special thanks this week go to our friend, Adrian Alker, for his thought-provoking reflection.

 Opening Sentence:

Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. (John 11:25, 26)

INTROIT HYMN – O for a thousand tongues to sing (tune: Lyngham)

COLLECT

Almighty Father, who in your great mercy gladdened the disciples with the sight of the risen Lord: give us such knowledge of his presence with us, that we may be strengthened and sustained by his risen life and serve you continually in righteousness and truth; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

1st Reading – Acts 3:12-19

When Peter saw it, he addressed the people, “You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you. “And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out,

HYMN: Children of the heavenly King (tune: Melling)

 

CHILDREN of the heavenly King,

As ye journey, sweetly sing;

Sing your Saviour’s worthy praise,

Glorious in his works and ways

 

2

We are travelling home to God,

In the way the fathers trod;

They are happy now, and we

Soon their happiness shall see.

 

3

Fear not, brethren; joyful stand

On the borders of your land;

Jesus Christ, your Father’s Son,

Bids you undismayed go on.

 

4

Lift your eyes, ye sons of light,

Zion’s city is in sight:

There our endless home shall be,

There our Lord in glory see.

2nd Reading – 1 John 3:1-7

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he was revealed to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous.

GRADUAL PSALM – Psalm 4

Cum invocarem

 

GOSPEL – Luke 24:36b-48

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you–that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

HYMN – Love divine, all loves excelling (tune: Love divine)

1 Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heav’n, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.

2 Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.

3 Come, almighty to deliver,
let us all thy grace receive;
suddenly return, and never,
nevermore thy temples leave.

4 Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray, and praise thee, without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.

5 Finish then thy new creation,
pure and spotless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee.

6 Changed from glory into glory
till in heav’n we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.

REFLECTION – Canon Adrian Alker

ANTHEM: Hallelujah Chorus (from Handel’s Oratorio ‘Messiah’) by St Paul’s Chamber Orchestra

PRAYERS

A Special Prayer for the Royal Family (adapted from the Church of Scotland)

Almighty and everlasting God, ‘the life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.’

But you, Lord, are from everlasting to everlasting, and we trust in your promise never to leave us nor forsake us.

Loving Lord, in this last year, through the worst of a global pandemic, we have found ourselves face to face with our own fragility and vulnerability, perhaps for the first time.

It is against such a backdrop of hurt and loss that we now offer thanks for the life and service of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. Whilst some are called to the front of the stage of life, and others to more supporting roles, we rejoice in the way that he, until now, has supported Her Majesty Elizabeth our Queen through all the years of her reign.

We remember, too, his work supporting charities, especially and most significantly for his patronage of The Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme, which has benefited young people for over sixty years.

We offer our heartfelt prayers for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and all the Royal family. Comfort them in their loss, bind their wounds and grant them the consolation of a store of treasured memories. Grant them the peace that comes from their faith and trust in you, which passes all understanding.

Bring us, O Lord God, at our last awakening into the house and gate of heaven, to enter into that gate and dwell in that house, where there shall be no darkness nor dazzling, but one equal light; no noise nor silence, but one equal music; no fears nor hopes, but one equal possession; no ends nor beginnings, but one equal eternity; in the habitations of thy glory and dominion, world without end. Amen. (after John Donne)

 

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, give mercy and grace to the living, rest to the departed, to your holy Church peace and concord, and to us sinners glory and eternal life; for you are alive and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

The Lord’s Prayer

 

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.

These and all our prayers this Eastertide we offer in the name of Jesus, who through his life, death and resurrection offers us hope instead of despair, life instead of death.

And so may God, in his infinite love and mercy, bring the whole Church, living and departed, to a joyful resurrection and the fulfilment of his eternal kingdom, and the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be among us and remain with us this day and always. Amen.

HYMN – Christ triumphant, ever reigning (tune: Guiting Power)

 

ORGAN VOLUNTARY : Prelude in Eb BWV 552 (J S Bach) played by Hans-André Stamm on the Trost-Organ in Waltershausen, Germany

 

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sunday 18th April 2021 – 3rd Sunday of Easter

WELCOME

Today is the 3rd Sunday of Easter, and we welcome you to our weekly selection of prayer, scripture and music giving thanks, in unusual circumstances, for the lives of loved ones recently lost within the context of the joy of our own Saviour’s death and resurrection. Our special thanks this week go to our friend, Adrian Alker, for his thought-provoking reflection.

 Opening Sentence:

Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. (John 11:25, 26)

INTROIT HYMN – O for a thousand tongues to sing (tune: Lyngham)

COLLECT

Almighty Father, who in your great mercy gladdened the disciples with the sight of the risen Lord: give us such knowledge of his presence with us, that we may be strengthened and sustained by his risen life and serve you continually in righteousness and truth; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

1st Reading – Acts 3:12-19

When Peter saw it, he addressed the people, “You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you. “And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out,

HYMN: Children of the heavenly King (tune: Melling)

 

CHILDREN of the heavenly King,

As ye journey, sweetly sing;

Sing your Saviour’s worthy praise,

Glorious in his works and ways

 

2

We are travelling home to God,

In the way the fathers trod;

They are happy now, and we

Soon their happiness shall see.

 

3

Fear not, brethren; joyful stand

On the borders of your land;

Jesus Christ, your Father’s Son,

Bids you undismayed go on.

 

4

Lift your eyes, ye sons of light,

Zion’s city is in sight:

There our endless home shall be,

There our Lord in glory see.

2nd Reading – 1 John 3:1-7

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he was revealed to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous.

GRADUAL PSALM – Psalm 4

Cum invocarem

 

GOSPEL – Luke 24:36b-48

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you–that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

HYMN – Love divine, all loves excelling (tune: Love divine)

1 Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heav’n, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.

2 Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.

3 Come, almighty to deliver,
let us all thy grace receive;
suddenly return, and never,
nevermore thy temples leave.

4 Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray, and praise thee, without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.

5 Finish then thy new creation,
pure and spotless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee.

6 Changed from glory into glory
till in heav’n we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.

REFLECTION – Canon Adrian Alker

ANTHEM: Hallelujah Chorus (from Handel’s Oratorio ‘Messiah’) by St Paul’s Chamber Orchestra

PRAYERS

A Special Prayer for the Royal Family (adapted from the Church of Scotland)

Almighty and everlasting God, ‘the life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.’

But you, Lord, are from everlasting to everlasting, and we trust in your promise never to leave us nor forsake us.

Loving Lord, in this last year, through the worst of a global pandemic, we have found ourselves face to face with our own fragility and vulnerability, perhaps for the first time.

It is against such a backdrop of hurt and loss that we now offer thanks for the life and service of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. Whilst some are called to the front of the stage of life, and others to more supporting roles, we rejoice in the way that he, until now, has supported Her Majesty Elizabeth our Queen through all the years of her reign.

We remember, too, his work supporting charities, especially and most significantly for his patronage of The Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme, which has benefited young people for over sixty years.

We offer our heartfelt prayers for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and all the Royal family. Comfort them in their loss, bind their wounds and grant them the consolation of a store of treasured memories. Grant them the peace that comes from their faith and trust in you, which passes all understanding.

Bring us, O Lord God, at our last awakening into the house and gate of heaven, to enter into that gate and dwell in that house, where there shall be no darkness nor dazzling, but one equal light; no noise nor silence, but one equal music; no fears nor hopes, but one equal possession; no ends nor beginnings, but one equal eternity; in the habitations of thy glory and dominion, world without end. Amen. (after John Donne)

 

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, give mercy and grace to the living, rest to the departed, to your holy Church peace and concord, and to us sinners glory and eternal life; for you are alive and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

The Lord’s Prayer

 

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.

These and all our prayers this Eastertide we offer in the name of Jesus, who through his life, death and resurrection offers us hope instead of despair, life instead of death.

And so may God, in his infinite love and mercy, bring the whole Church, living and departed, to a joyful resurrection and the fulfilment of his eternal kingdom, and the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be among us and remain with us this day and always. Amen.

HYMN – Christ triumphant, ever reigning (tune: Guiting Power)

 

ORGAN VOLUNTARY : Prelude in Eb BWV 552 (J S Bach) played by Hans-André Stamm on the Trost-Organ in Waltershausen, Germany

 

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sunday 18th April 2021 – 3rd Sunday of Easter

WELCOME

Today is the 3rd Sunday of Easter, and we welcome you to our weekly selection of prayer, scripture and music giving thanks, in unusual circumstances, for the lives of loved ones recently lost within the context of the joy of our own Saviour’s death and resurrection. Our special thanks this week go to our friend, Adrian Alker, for his thought-provoking reflection.

 Opening Sentence:

Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. (John 11:25, 26)

INTROIT HYMN – O for a thousand tongues to sing (tune: Lyngham)

COLLECT

Almighty Father, who in your great mercy gladdened the disciples with the sight of the risen Lord: give us such knowledge of his presence with us, that we may be strengthened and sustained by his risen life and serve you continually in righteousness and truth; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

1st Reading – Acts 3:12-19

When Peter saw it, he addressed the people, “You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you. “And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out,

HYMN: Children of the heavenly King (tune: Melling)

 

CHILDREN of the heavenly King,

As ye journey, sweetly sing;

Sing your Saviour’s worthy praise,

Glorious in his works and ways

 

2

We are travelling home to God,

In the way the fathers trod;

They are happy now, and we

Soon their happiness shall see.

 

3

Fear not, brethren; joyful stand

On the borders of your land;

Jesus Christ, your Father’s Son,

Bids you undismayed go on.

 

4

Lift your eyes, ye sons of light,

Zion’s city is in sight:

There our endless home shall be,

There our Lord in glory see.

2nd Reading – 1 John 3:1-7

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he was revealed to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous.

GRADUAL PSALM – Psalm 4

Cum invocarem

 

GOSPEL – Luke 24:36b-48

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you–that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

HYMN – Love divine, all loves excelling (tune: Love divine)

1 Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heav’n, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.

2 Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.

3 Come, almighty to deliver,
let us all thy grace receive;
suddenly return, and never,
nevermore thy temples leave.

4 Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray, and praise thee, without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.

5 Finish then thy new creation,
pure and spotless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee.

6 Changed from glory into glory
till in heav’n we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.

REFLECTION – Canon Adrian Alker

ANTHEM: Hallelujah Chorus (from Handel’s Oratorio ‘Messiah’) by St Paul’s Chamber Orchestra

PRAYERS

A Special Prayer for the Royal Family (adapted from the Church of Scotland)

Almighty and everlasting God, ‘the life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.’

But you, Lord, are from everlasting to everlasting, and we trust in your promise never to leave us nor forsake us.

Loving Lord, in this last year, through the worst of a global pandemic, we have found ourselves face to face with our own fragility and vulnerability, perhaps for the first time.

It is against such a backdrop of hurt and loss that we now offer thanks for the life and service of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. Whilst some are called to the front of the stage of life, and others to more supporting roles, we rejoice in the way that he, until now, has supported Her Majesty Elizabeth our Queen through all the years of her reign.

We remember, too, his work supporting charities, especially and most significantly for his patronage of The Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme, which has benefited young people for over sixty years.

We offer our heartfelt prayers for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and all the Royal family. Comfort them in their loss, bind their wounds and grant them the consolation of a store of treasured memories. Grant them the peace that comes from their faith and trust in you, which passes all understanding.

Bring us, O Lord God, at our last awakening into the house and gate of heaven, to enter into that gate and dwell in that house, where there shall be no darkness nor dazzling, but one equal light; no noise nor silence, but one equal music; no fears nor hopes, but one equal possession; no ends nor beginnings, but one equal eternity; in the habitations of thy glory and dominion, world without end. Amen. (after John Donne)

 

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, give mercy and grace to the living, rest to the departed, to your holy Church peace and concord, and to us sinners glory and eternal life; for you are alive and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

The Lord’s Prayer

 

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.

These and all our prayers this Eastertide we offer in the name of Jesus, who through his life, death and resurrection offers us hope instead of despair, life instead of death.

And so may God, in his infinite love and mercy, bring the whole Church, living and departed, to a joyful resurrection and the fulfilment of his eternal kingdom, and the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be among us and remain with us this day and always. Amen.

HYMN – Christ triumphant, ever reigning (tune: Guiting Power)

 

ORGAN VOLUNTARY : Prelude in Eb BWV 552 (J S Bach) played by Hans-André Stamm on the Trost-Organ in Waltershausen, Germany

 

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sunday 18th April 2021 – 3rd Sunday of Easter

WELCOME

Today is the 3rd Sunday of Easter, and we welcome you to our weekly selection of prayer, scripture and music giving thanks, in unusual circumstances, for the lives of loved ones recently lost within the context of the joy of our own Saviour’s death and resurrection. Our special thanks this week go to our friend, Adrian Alker, for his thought-provoking reflection.

 Opening Sentence:

Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. (John 11:25, 26)

INTROIT HYMN – O for a thousand tongues to sing (tune: Lyngham)

COLLECT

Almighty Father, who in your great mercy gladdened the disciples with the sight of the risen Lord: give us such knowledge of his presence with us, that we may be strengthened and sustained by his risen life and serve you continually in righteousness and truth; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

1st Reading – Acts 3:12-19

When Peter saw it, he addressed the people, “You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you. “And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out,

HYMN: Children of the heavenly King (tune: Melling)

 

CHILDREN of the heavenly King,

As ye journey, sweetly sing;

Sing your Saviour’s worthy praise,

Glorious in his works and ways

 

2

We are travelling home to God,

In the way the fathers trod;

They are happy now, and we

Soon their happiness shall see.

 

3

Fear not, brethren; joyful stand

On the borders of your land;

Jesus Christ, your Father’s Son,

Bids you undismayed go on.

 

4

Lift your eyes, ye sons of light,

Zion’s city is in sight:

There our endless home shall be,

There our Lord in glory see.

2nd Reading – 1 John 3:1-7

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he was revealed to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous.

GRADUAL PSALM – Psalm 4

Cum invocarem

 

GOSPEL – Luke 24:36b-48

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you–that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

HYMN – Love divine, all loves excelling (tune: Love divine)

1 Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heav’n, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.

2 Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.

3 Come, almighty to deliver,
let us all thy grace receive;
suddenly return, and never,
nevermore thy temples leave.

4 Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray, and praise thee, without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.

5 Finish then thy new creation,
pure and spotless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee.

6 Changed from glory into glory
till in heav’n we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.

REFLECTION – Canon Adrian Alker

ANTHEM: Hallelujah Chorus (from Handel’s Oratorio ‘Messiah’) by St Paul’s Chamber Orchestra

PRAYERS

A Special Prayer for the Royal Family (adapted from the Church of Scotland)

Almighty and everlasting God, ‘the life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.’

But you, Lord, are from everlasting to everlasting, and we trust in your promise never to leave us nor forsake us.

Loving Lord, in this last year, through the worst of a global pandemic, we have found ourselves face to face with our own fragility and vulnerability, perhaps for the first time.

It is against such a backdrop of hurt and loss that we now offer thanks for the life and service of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. Whilst some are called to the front of the stage of life, and others to more supporting roles, we rejoice in the way that he, until now, has supported Her Majesty Elizabeth our Queen through all the years of her reign.

We remember, too, his work supporting charities, especially and most significantly for his patronage of The Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme, which has benefited young people for over sixty years.

We offer our heartfelt prayers for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and all the Royal family. Comfort them in their loss, bind their wounds and grant them the consolation of a store of treasured memories. Grant them the peace that comes from their faith and trust in you, which passes all understanding.

Bring us, O Lord God, at our last awakening into the house and gate of heaven, to enter into that gate and dwell in that house, where there shall be no darkness nor dazzling, but one equal light; no noise nor silence, but one equal music; no fears nor hopes, but one equal possession; no ends nor beginnings, but one equal eternity; in the habitations of thy glory and dominion, world without end. Amen. (after John Donne)

 

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, give mercy and grace to the living, rest to the departed, to your holy Church peace and concord, and to us sinners glory and eternal life; for you are alive and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

The Lord’s Prayer

 

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.

These and all our prayers this Eastertide we offer in the name of Jesus, who through his life, death and resurrection offers us hope instead of despair, life instead of death.

And so may God, in his infinite love and mercy, bring the whole Church, living and departed, to a joyful resurrection and the fulfilment of his eternal kingdom, and the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be among us and remain with us this day and always. Amen.

HYMN – Christ triumphant, ever reigning (tune: Guiting Power)

 

ORGAN VOLUNTARY : Prelude in Eb BWV 552 (J S Bach) played by Hans-André Stamm on the Trost-Organ in Waltershausen, Germany

 

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sunday 18th April 2021 – 3rd Sunday of Easter

WELCOME

Today is the 3rd Sunday of Easter, and we welcome you to our weekly selection of prayer, scripture and music giving thanks, in unusual circumstances, for the lives of loved ones recently lost within the context of the joy of our own Saviour’s death and resurrection. Our special thanks this week go to our friend, Adrian Alker, for his thought-provoking reflection.

 Opening Sentence:

Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. (John 11:25, 26)

INTROIT HYMN – O for a thousand tongues to sing (tune: Lyngham)

COLLECT

Almighty Father, who in your great mercy gladdened the disciples with the sight of the risen Lord: give us such knowledge of his presence with us, that we may be strengthened and sustained by his risen life and serve you continually in righteousness and truth; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

1st Reading – Acts 3:12-19

When Peter saw it, he addressed the people, “You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you. “And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out,

HYMN: Children of the heavenly King (tune: Melling)

 

CHILDREN of the heavenly King,

As ye journey, sweetly sing;

Sing your Saviour’s worthy praise,

Glorious in his works and ways

 

2

We are travelling home to God,

In the way the fathers trod;

They are happy now, and we

Soon their happiness shall see.

 

3

Fear not, brethren; joyful stand

On the borders of your land;

Jesus Christ, your Father’s Son,

Bids you undismayed go on.

 

4

Lift your eyes, ye sons of light,

Zion’s city is in sight:

There our endless home shall be,

There our Lord in glory see.

2nd Reading – 1 John 3:1-7

See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed. What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Everyone who commits sin is guilty of lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he was revealed to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Everyone who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous.

GRADUAL PSALM – Psalm 4

Cum invocarem

 

GOSPEL – Luke 24:36b-48

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence. Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you–that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

HYMN – Love divine, all loves excelling (tune: Love divine)

1 Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heav’n, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.

2 Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.

3 Come, almighty to deliver,
let us all thy grace receive;
suddenly return, and never,
nevermore thy temples leave.

4 Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray, and praise thee, without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.

5 Finish then thy new creation,
pure and spotless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee.

6 Changed from glory into glory
till in heav’n we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.

REFLECTION – Canon Adrian Alker

ANTHEM: Hallelujah Chorus (from Handel’s Oratorio ‘Messiah’) by St Paul’s Chamber Orchestra

PRAYERS

A Special Prayer for the Royal Family (adapted from the Church of Scotland)

Almighty and everlasting God, ‘the life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.’

But you, Lord, are from everlasting to everlasting, and we trust in your promise never to leave us nor forsake us.

Loving Lord, in this last year, through the worst of a global pandemic, we have found ourselves face to face with our own fragility and vulnerability, perhaps for the first time.

It is against such a backdrop of hurt and loss that we now offer thanks for the life and service of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. Whilst some are called to the front of the stage of life, and others to more supporting roles, we rejoice in the way that he, until now, has supported Her Majesty Elizabeth our Queen through all the years of her reign.

We remember, too, his work supporting charities, especially and most significantly for his patronage of The Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme, which has benefited young people for over sixty years.

We offer our heartfelt prayers for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and all the Royal family. Comfort them in their loss, bind their wounds and grant them the consolation of a store of treasured memories. Grant them the peace that comes from their faith and trust in you, which passes all understanding.

Bring us, O Lord God, at our last awakening into the house and gate of heaven, to enter into that gate and dwell in that house, where there shall be no darkness nor dazzling, but one equal light; no noise nor silence, but one equal music; no fears nor hopes, but one equal possession; no ends nor beginnings, but one equal eternity; in the habitations of thy glory and dominion, world without end. Amen. (after John Donne)

 

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, give mercy and grace to the living, rest to the departed, to your holy Church peace and concord, and to us sinners glory and eternal life; for you are alive and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

The Lord’s Prayer

 

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.

These and all our prayers this Eastertide we offer in the name of Jesus, who through his life, death and resurrection offers us hope instead of despair, life instead of death.

And so may God, in his infinite love and mercy, bring the whole Church, living and departed, to a joyful resurrection and the fulfilment of his eternal kingdom, and the blessing of God Almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be among us and remain with us this day and always. Amen.

HYMN – Christ triumphant, ever reigning (tune: Guiting Power)

 

ORGAN VOLUNTARY : Prelude in Eb BWV 552 (J S Bach) played by Hans-André Stamm on the Trost-Organ in Waltershausen, Germany

 

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sunday 11th April 2021 – 2nd Sunday of Easter

WELCOME

Welcome to our weekly selection of prayers, readings and music for worship. Today is the 2nd Sunday of Easter and our Reflection on today’s bible readings is by our friend, the Revd Dr Walter Houston.

 This is the day which the Lord has made:

Let us rejoice and be glad in it!

INTROIT HYMN – God of grace and God of glory (tune: Cwm Rhondda)

COLLECT

Almighty and everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

1st READING – Acts 4:32-35

Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.

HYMN: Just as I am, without one plea (tune: Saffron Walden)

2nd READING – 1 John 1:1-2:2

We declare to you what was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life– this life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us– we declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete. This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true; but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.

GRADUAL PSALM – Psalm 133, set to music by Nick Strimple, sung by the vocal ensemble ‘Tonality’ in the church of St Thomas the Apostle, Hollywood in 2016.

Ecce, quam bonum!

  1. Behold, behold how good and pleasant it is when people dwell in unity!

  1. It is like a precious oil upon the head, running down upon the beard of Aaron, running down the collar of his robe.

  2. It is like the dew of Hermon which falls on the mountains of Zion.

  3. For there the Lordhas commanded the blessing: life for evermore.

       Behold, behold how good and pleasant it is when people dwell in unity!

GOSPEL – John 20:19-31

When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.” A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe. “Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.” Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.

HYMN – Ye Sons and Daughters (tune: O Filii et Filiae)

REFLECTION – Revd Dr Walter Houston

ANTHEM: Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace (Samuel Sebastian Wesley)

PRAYERS

Heavenly Father, today we pray especially for the soul of His Royal Highness, Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on this Sunday during the week of national mourning. We pray that you will be with Her Majesty, Elizabeth, our Queen, and all the members of the Royal Family as they privately remember their dear departed brother in Christ, and bring them not only comfort in their sorrow, but also strength and fortitude as they make preparation for his funeral service next Saturday. We give thanks to you, O Lord, for the life of Philip, husband and father, a special family man, an example to many; and we commend his soul to your safe keeping, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Father, we praise and bless you for every member of your Church family throughout the world, and for the diverse ways that you graciously use each one to fulfil the particular part that you have designed for them, in your wider plans and purposes.

Thank you, that we are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation and your own special possession. Thank you, that we are stones being built up into a glorious dwelling-place; a Temple fit for our God, so that we may proclaim your praise both with our lips and in our lives. You have brought us out of darkness into your wonderful light, and we praise and bless you for your grace and mercy.

We are a privileged people, and we thank you for making us one with each other, and in union with Christ Jesus our Lord. Stir up in our hearts a desire to fulfil your purposes for us, with Christ as our chief cornerstone. Sanctify us with your truth and keep our minds for ever focused on Jesus, who alone is our guide, our saviour and mediator; in whom is eternal life, and through whom we make this prayer. Amen.

 The Lord’s Prayer

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.

So let us go forth into the world in peace,
Being of good courage,
Holding fast that which is good.
Rendering to no one evil for evil.
Help us give strength to the fainthearted,
To support the weak,
To help the afflicted.
Showing love to all,
Loving and serving the Lord,
And rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit;
And may the blessing of almighty God,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
Be among us and remain with us always. Amen.

HYMN – Crown him with many crowns (tune Diademata)

ORGAN VOLUNTARY: Jihoon Song plays the Fantasia in Eb major by Johann Gottfried Müthel, the last pupil of Johann Sebastian Bach, at the Gottfried Silbermann organ (1721) of Georgenkirche in Rötha.

 SPECIFICATION OF THE ORGAN

I – Hauptwerk

Bordun 16′ Principal 8′ Rohr-Flöte 8′ Octava 4′ Spitz-Flöte 4′ Quinta 3′ Octava 2′ Cornet III (ab c1) Mixtur III Cÿmbeln II

II – Oberwerk

Gedackt 8′ Quintadena 8′ Principal 4′ Rohr-Flöte 4′ Nasat 3′ Octava 2′ Tertia 1 3/5′ Quinta 1 1/2′ Sifflet 1′ Mixtur

III Pedal

Principal-Bass 16′ Posaune 16′ Trommete 8′

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sunday 4th April 2021 – Easter Day – Holy Communion

Choral Eucharist – URC Order 4

Setting: ‘Coronation’ Mass KV 317 in C major (W A Mozart)

Reflection: Revd Dr David Stec

WELCOME

Today’s service follows the Fourth Order for Holy Communion of the United Reformed Church. The choral setting today is Mozart’s ‘Coronation’ Mass KV 317 sung by the Vienna Boys’ Choir, and for any of you who would like to join them, music is provided! The spoken parts of the service have been recorded by Douglas. Please feel free to use these, or read the sections in your own preferred way.

Opening Sentences

Leader: This is the day which the Lord has made

All: let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Leader: Alleluia! Christ is risen!

All: He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

 Prayer of Approach

Let us pray. Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hidden: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

HYMN: The Lord is risen indeed (tune: Nazarena)

 Confession of Sin

Lord God most merciful, we confess that we have sinned, through our own fault, and in common with others, in thought, word and deed, and through what we have left undone. We ask to be forgiven. By the power of your Spirit turn us from evil to good, help us to forgive others, and keep us in your ways of righteousness and love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon

In repentance and in faith receive the promise of grace and the assurance of pardon. Here are words you may trust, words that merit full acceptance: ‘Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.’ Your sins are forgiven for his sake. Thanks be to God.

The Kyries

 Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us. Lord, have mercy on us.

 Gloria in excelsis

 Glory to God in the highest, and peace to his people on earth. Lord God, heavenly King, almighty God and Father, we worship you, we give you thanks, we praise you for your glory. Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father, Lord God, Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world: have mercy on us; you are seated at the right hand of the Father: receive our prayer. For you alone are the Holy One, you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

Prayer for Today

Lord of all life and power, who through the mighty resurrection of your Son overcame the old order of sin and death to make all things new in him: grant that we, being dead to sin and alive to you in Jesus Christ, may reign with him in glory; to whom with you and the Holy Spirit be praise and honour, glory and might, now and in all eternity. Amen.

 A Lesson from the Old Testament – Isaiah 25:6-9

On this mountain the LORD of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wines, of rich food filled with marrow, of well-aged wines strained clear. And he will destroy on this mountain the shroud that is cast over all peoples, the sheet that is spread over all nations; he will swallow up death forever. Then the Lord GOD will wipe away the tears from all faces, and the disgrace of his people he will take away from all the earth, for the LORD has spoken. It will be said on that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, so that he might save us. This is the LORD for whom we have waited; let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation.

HYMN: The strife is o’er, the battle done (tune: Victory)

 The EPISTLE – 1 Corinthians 15:1-11

Now I would remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you–unless you have come to believe in vain. For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me. For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them–though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe.

The Easter Anthems

1 Christ our passover is sacrificed for us : therefore let us keep the feast;

2 Not with the old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness : but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

3 Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more : death hath no more dominion over him.

4 For in that he died, he died unto sin once : but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.

5 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin : but alive unto God, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

6 Christ is risen from the dead : and become the first-fruits of them that slept.

7 For since by man came death : by man came also the resurrection of the dead.

8 For as in Adam all die : even so in Christ shall all be made alive.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son : and to the Holy Ghost;

as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be : world without end.  Amen.

The HOLY GOSPEL – Mark 16:1-8

When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. They had been saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” When they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled back. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man, dressed in a white robe, sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed. But he said to them, “Do not be alarmed; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Look, there is the place they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him, just as he told you.” So they went out and fled from the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them; and they said nothing to any one, for they were afraid.

HYMN: Low in the grave he lay (tune: Christ arose)

 REFLECTION: Revd Dr David Stec

Prayers for the Church and the World

Christ is Risen, and the power of His resurrection fills the world today with new life, hope and expectation and so we bring him all our needs.

Faithful God, we join with your church throughout the world celebrating the Resurrection on this day. Despite our diversity of language and of race, we share in our worship a common joy and delight which makes us one in the Gospel. We pray that the Holy Spirit may guide and strengthen us, both in mission and in service, praying that we may grow daily in our love for you, and for our brothers and sisters in Christ. We pray especially for your Church here in Sheffield, and especially for our own future, as we begin to recover from the Coronavirus Pandemic.

 (Short Silence)

Christ is Risen: He is risen indeed, Alleluia.

Creator God, we pray for the leaders of the nations of the world, that they may govern their people justly and fairly, giving due priority to those in greatest need. We also remember today those involved in the fight against international terrorism and for all service personnel in active duty around the world. We pray especially for all the innocent people who find themselves fleeing the barbaric actions of military regime in Burma.

 (Short Silence)

Christ is Risen: He is risen indeed, Alleluia.

Father God, this joyful Eastertide we pray for our families and friends, especially those we are still unable to visit because of the pandemic. We thank you for the joy of sending and receiving Easter greetings and messages of love, and we are thankful for the latest communication systems which seem to bring our loved ones even closer, even those who are separated by great distances.

 (Short Silence)

Christ is Risen: He is risen indeed, Alleluia.

Creator God we pray for those who are in need and ask you to look with pity on those who suffer. We pray for the broken-hearted, for the sick and the lonely, that your very presence would comfort them in their time of need. We give special thanks for all who work in the health and caring services, and for those who look after and educate our children.

 (Short Silence)

Christ is Risen: He is risen indeed, Alleluia.

Merciful God, we pray for those who have recently died, that they may share in the promise of new life won for us all, by the resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ, and by his consequential triumph over death and the grave.

 (Short Silence)

Christ is Risen: He is risen indeed, Alleluia.

This weekend we share in the birthday celebrations of Martin How, former Southern Area Commissioner for the RSCM and founder of the Southern Cathedral Singers. We join with church musicians worldwide in thanking Martin for a lifetime of inspirational service to church music, wishing him the happiest of 90th birthdays.

Faithful God as we go out into the world, we pray that we may reflect your love in our families, our church and our community; so that the world can witness that we are followers of Christ, and that by example we may draw others into his loving care.

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

The Invitation and the Gracious Words

Hear the gracious words of our Lord Jesus Christ; Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. Anyone who comes to me I will never drive away.

The Peace

The peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with us all.

HYMN: Jesus lives! thy terrors now (tune: St. Albinus)

 1

Jesus lives! Thy terrors now
Can no more, O death, no more appal us;
Jesus lives! by this we know
Thou, O grave, canst not enthral us.
Alleluya!

2

Jesus lives! henceforth is death
But the gate of life immortal;
This shall calm our trembling breath,
When we pass its gloomy portal.
Alleluya!

3

Jesus lives! for us he died;
Then, alone to Jesus living,
Pure in heart may we abide,
Glory to our Saviour giving.
Alleluya!

4

Jesus lives! our hearts know well
Nought from us his love shall sever;
Life, nor death, nor powers of hell
Tear us from his keeping ever.
Alleluya!

5

Jesus lives! to him the throne
Over all the world is given;
May we go where he is gone,
Rest and reign with him in heaven.
Alleluya!

The Offertory

If you are partaking of your own bread and wine in your home, you are invited to offer this prayer of blessing:

Eternal God, we come with these gifts to offer our sacrifice of praise and the service of our lives; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Narrative of the Institution of the Lord’s Supper

Hear the narrative of the institution of the Lord’s Supper as it was recorded by the apostle Paul. I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, ‘This is my body that is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.’ For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

The Taking of the Bread and Wine

In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and following his example, we take this bread and this cup, and give thanks to God.

The Thanksgiving

 Leader: Lift up your hearts.

All: We lift them to the Lord.

Leader: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

All: It is right to give our thanks and praise.

With joy we give you thanks and praise, Almighty God, Source of all life and love, that we live in your world, that you are always creating and sustaining it by your power, and that you have so made us that we can know and love you, trust and serve you. We give you thanks that you loved the world so much that you gave your only Son, so that everyone who has faith in him may not die but have eternal life. We thank you that Jesus was born among us that he lived our common life on earth; that he suffered and died for us; that he rose again; and that he is always present through the Holy Spirit. We thank you that we can live in the faith that your kingdom will come, and that in life, in death and beyond death you are with us.

Therefore with all the company of heaven, and with all your people, of all places and times, we proclaim your greatness and sing your praise.

Sanctus and Benedictus

Holy, holy, holy Lord God of power and might, Heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

Holy Lord God, by what we do here in remembrance of Christ we celebrate his perfect sacrifice on the Cross and his glorious resurrection and ascension; we declare that he is Lord of all; and we prepare for his coming in his kingdom. We pray that through your Holy Spirit this bread may be for us the body of Christ and this wine the blood of Christ. Accept our sacrifice of praise; and as we eat and drink at his command unite us to Christ as one body in him, and give us strength to serve you in the world. And to you, one holy and eternal God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we give praise and glory, now and for ever. Amen.

 The Lord’s Prayer

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.

The Breaking of the Bread

 The Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, ‘This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ In the same way also the cup saying ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.

The Sharing of the Bread and Wine

Before you take the bread, you may say:

Take, eat – this is the body of Christ which is broken for me; this I do this in remembrance of him.

Before you take the wine, you may say:

This cup, of which I drink, is the new covenant in the blood of Christ, shed for me and for many for the remission of sins.

Agnus Dei

 Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world: Have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world: Have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world: Grant us peace.

Anthem: Ye choirs of New Jerusalem (Sir C V Stanford), sung by the Choir of New College, Oxford

 The Acclamation

Leader: Let us praise the Lord.

All: Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again. Blessing and honour and glory and power be to our God for ever and ever. Amen.

Prayer after Communion

God of Life, who for our redemption gave your only-begotten Son to the death of the cross, who by his glorious resurrection has delivered us from the power of the enemy: grant us so to die daily to sin, that we may evermore live with him in the joy of his risen life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

HYMN: Thine be the glory (tune: Judas Maccabeus)

 Dismissal and Blessing

Go in peace to serve the Lord; and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, be with us evermore. Amen.

ORGAN VOLUNTARY: Choral-Improvisation on ‘Victimæ Paschali laudes’ by Charles Tournemire (1870-1939) transcribed by Maurice Duruflé. Organ: Olivier Penin (Grandes Orgues de la Basilique Sainte-Clotilde, Paris)

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MARTIN HOW!

Following three years of raising £250,000 for the Minster Organ Restoration Appeal, we celebrated the arrival of the newly-restored organ with an Organ Inaugural Concert on Saturday 17th November 2018. The concert opened with a world-premiere of an organ piece entitled ‘Thanksgiving’, specifically composed and played for the reopening of the Minster organ by the Minster’s Organist Laureate, Martin How. This was then followed by Martin’s rousing arrangement of the hymn ‘Light’s Abode, Celestial Salem’, sung by the Minster Choirs and the Whitgift Chamber Choir under the direction of Ronny Krippner.

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