Sunday Service at home
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
The Lord be with you
All: and also with you.
Prayer of Preparation
All: 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.
Prayer of Penitence
God shows his love for us in that when we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Let us show our love for him by confessing our sins in penitence and faith.
All: Almighty God, our heavenly Father,
we have sinned against you and against our neighbour
in thought and word and deed,
through negligence, through weakness,
through our own deliberate fault.
We are truly sorry and repent of all our sins.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,
who died for us, forgive us all that is past
and grant that we may serve you in newness of life
to the glory of your name.
May Almighty God have mercy on us,
forgive us our sins and bring us to everlasting life.
A short, general prayer - see below
THE GOSPEL READINGS - see below
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY - see below
Please pray for the church and the world, and let us bring to mind
those who are ill, those who are troubled and those who have died.
Concluding with The Lord’s Prayer
Let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us:
All: 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.
The God of peace, who brought again from the dead
our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep,
make you perfect in every good work to do his will,
And the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among you and remain with you always. Amen
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord. Alleluia! Alleluia!
All: In the name of Christ. Alleluia! Alleluia!
God, who at this time taught the hearts of your faithful people by sending to them the light of your Holy Spirit: grant us by the same Spirit to have a right judgement in all things and evermore to rejoice in his holy comfort; through the merits of Christ Jesus our Saviour who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God now and for ever. Amen
FIRST READING Acts 2. 1 – 21
When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.
Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. Amazed and astonished, they asked, ‘Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God’s deeds of power.’
All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, ‘What does this mean?’ But others sneered and said, ‘They are filled with new wine.’ But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them: ‘Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning. No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel: “In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams. Even upon my slaves, both men and women, in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy
And I will show portents in the heaven above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and smoky mist. The sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the coming of the Lord’s great and glorious day. Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
SECOND READING 1 Corinthians 12. 3b -13
No one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except by the Holy Spirit. Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses. For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit
GOSPEL John 20. 19 – 23
When it was evening on 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.’
Fr.Andrew’s Thought for the week
Pentecost, the day the spirit came, 2000 years ago. A powerful event describable only in the imagination - the first disciples variously in shock, rapture and sharing with us, for we too receive God’s Holy Spirit. The disciples - dispirited at the cross, bewildered initially at the Resurrection, gradually getting over their bereavement with Jesus’ presence among them, then having to say goodbye again at his Ascension, now receive his promised Holy Spirit. It was a day of renewal for the disciples a rebirth - THEY WERE BORN AGAIN!
And so it is for us. Each day is a new day with God, the Spirit gives us the power, imagination and tenacity to make it anew. It was the birthday of the Church, the whole Church: Protestant, Catholic and Independent so we celebrate the birthday of the Church today. Yes, there is a lot of sadness, frustration and worry for us in this time of lockdown, but there will be better times to come and we need to be ready for them. The tale of the coming of the Holy Spirit shows formerly dispirited disciples enlivened, fired up, filled with God’s strength and joy ready to take on the world. The same Spirit is within you and me, enabling us to take on the world, and as we are renewed, the world is renewed. Take heart, be bold, live in the joy of the spirit, and renewed in strength. Be ready to follow the Spirit’s lead within you, to renew the world when lockdown is lifted and this crisis is over!
(With thanks to Fr.Andrew Bullock - Area Dean)