On Lent 3, 15th March, the last time we held public worship in St James’, I promised that whatever transpired I would celebrate the Eucharist every Sunday morning at 10am. If we couldn’t come to church people could gather round their kitchen/dining room table either then or, at some other time in the day, to pray and break bread with those in their household who wished to join them. It would be an opportunity to share with the village in offering up prayers for themselves, their family, this village and the world.
Today, we hear that Jesus offers to take our yoke and the heavy burden from our shoulders. It is easy to be weighed down by all life can throw at us and feel that the weight is too much to bear. Jesus tells us that if we put our faith in him he will help us and hold us. It would be very easy to think that this weekend marks the end of our lock down and from now on life will return to “normal”. For many people the challenges this pandemic has brought are just about to face them. Whether that’s the fear of going out, the loss of their livelihood or facing up to the future without loved ones who have died during lockdown. The world, this nation and this village needs to see Christian love in action more than ever. The Christian faith is about the heart driving the head.
Every week we have had a short service sheet for your use with the Reflection and now the 10am Sunday Eucharist live streamed. The live streamed service lasts about 20 mins and can be viewed from 10am on Sunday or watched on catch-up via the Church Facebook page. The Reflection can be down-loaded from the church website www.stjameschurchforton.org or viewed on Youtube. You can view this week’s Reflection for Trinity 4 by clicking the link below.
We should be live just before 10am. If you cannot watch live you will be able to view it later on catch-up. If you have a candle you might like to place it on the table and light it.
If you want to share with us in the breaking of the bread you should place some bread on the table
Peter; In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Peter: The Lord be with you
All: and also with you.
Prayer of Preparation
To whom all hearts are open, and 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
Prayers of Penitence
Peter: Let us in a time of silence offer our lives to God
All: Lord God, we have sinned against you; we have done evil in your sight.
We are sorry and repent. Have mercy on us according to your love.
Wash away our wrongdoing and cleanse us from our sin. Renew a right spirit within us and restore us to the joy of your salvation, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
We all say together the Collect for Trinity 4:
God, the protector of all who trust in you, without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy: increase and multiply upon us your mercy; that with you as our ruler and guide we may so pass through things temporal that we lose not our hold on things eternal; grant this, heavenly Father, for our Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen
Reading Matthew 11 v 16-19 & 25—end
“But to what shall I liken this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to their companions, and saying, For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look, a glutton and a winebibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ But wisdom is justified by her children.” At that time Jesus answered and said, “I thank You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent and have revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight. All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father. Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him. Come to Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
We pray for our preparations to begin public worship again
We remember those who are sick especially John Bookless, Andrew Dodgson, Amy Hall, and Derek Oldham
Peter: The Lord is here All: His spirit is with us Peter : Lift up your hearts All: We lift them to the Lord Peter: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God All: It is right to give him thanks and praise
Peter says prayer over the bread and wine at the end we all say: All: Amen
We say together 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.
A Concluding Prayer
Eternal God, comfort of the afflicted and healer of the broken, you have fed us at the table of life and hope: teach us the ways of gentleness and peace, that all the world may acknowledge the kingdom of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
May the knowledge of God guide us in wisdom; the gentleness of Christ restore our hope; and the power of the Holy Spirit set us free: and the blessing of God almighty the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit, be among us and remain with us always. Amen
As we share bread ask God to give you the vision to know those around you who are crying out for help and the sensitivity to reach out to help and support them.
These are God’s holy gifts for God’s holy people.
If you would like a copy of this service sheet emailed to you every Saturday please send your email address to email@example.com.
There are several people in the village offering help and support. St James’ has a number of people who are able to help with shopping, collecting of medication and in any other way should you need it. We are also aware that there will be some in the village who are experiencing severe financial difficulties due to not being able to work. Whilst we don’t have limitless funds we may be able to help in a small way.
If you need help in any way please contact Peter our Vicar:
Email and telephone number below
Email firstname.lastname@example.org Tel 07970 923 141
If you would like the sheet to include the names of friends or relatives who are sick or any who have passed away please email them to Peter on the above email
There will be a service sheet for every week whilst we are unable to have public worship
Resumption of public worship at St James’
Public worship will resume at St James’ on Sunday 12th July. There are a number of restrictions on what we are or not allowed to do. Details of arrangements will be posted on the church website and social media.
For the last 15 weeks this service sheet has contained an advert for the Champagne reception we will have when we can all return to public worship. When I first printed a sheet back in March I believed there would be a day when we could simply return to how it was before 17th March. Now I am not sure when “normality” will return or what that will be. So the Champagne is still in the cooler and will be out just as soon as we can have the celebration of worship without restrictions.
Watch this space!