St. Leonard, Clent
© Clent PCC
Saint Leonard’s Service for the Eighth Sunday after Trinity Welcome to our OpenCast church service - on-line. There are prayers, readings, hymns and music; just as you would have in church. As you read through this service you may care to say aloud the bold text. To hear the music and the readings, click on each title (red, underlined text) (and remember to adjust the volume on your speakers). We come together to worship God Let us pray: Living God, as we come into your presence, open our hands and hearts to the treasure of your unconditional love for us, inspire us with the treasure of your compassion and forgiveness, and fill us with the treasure of your Spirit. Amen. Hymn: We plough the fields and scatter the good seed Scottish Festival Singers We praise the Lord Loving God, we praise and thank you for all the lasting treasures you give us. Help us, each day, to live with honour and goodness, and as we wait and trust in you, to be ready for whatever you lead us to do; through Jesus Christ our Lord. We praise you, always. Bible Readings: Old Testament: Psalm: New Testament: Gospel: Isaiah 1.10-20 50 1-8, 23-24 Hebrews 11.1-3, 8-16 Luke 12.32-40 Text Text Text Text Audio Audio Audio Audio Collect Lord God, your Son left the riches of heaven and became poor for our sake: when we prosper save us from pride, when we are needy save us from despair, that we may trust in you alone; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Special Prayer for these times God of peace and justice, we pray for the people of Ukraine today. We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons. We pray for all those who fear for tomorrow, that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them. We pray for those with power over war or peace, for wisdom, discernment and compassion to guide their decisions. Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear, that you would hold and protect them. We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace. Amen Archbishop Justin Welby Archbishop Stephen Cottrell Reflection These are the opening words of our Old Testament reading: “The word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, ‘Do not be afraid, Abram’” And these are the opening words of our Gospel reading: “Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Do not be afraid, little flock’”. I’m told that the phrase “Do not be afraid” occurs more than any other in the Bible. I went through my Biblical Concordance looking for that phrase, when I was preparing for this reflection, and found that the phrase “Do not be afraid” occurs in the Bible some 23 times 13 times in the Old Testament, and 10 times in the New Testament and of those 10, 6 of them are spoken by Jesus. So people being afraid is a recurring concern throughout the Bible, and not least to Jesus himself as he encounters people. Living in fear is a terrible thing, isn’t it. We see it in people’s faces virtually every day on our TV screens. We see it in the faces of Ukrainians, as they come under constant bombardment from Russia; We see it in the faces of people as they watch wildfires approach and destroy their property and their homes; We see it in the faces of people who have no money to put in the gas meter, so they can’t cook, and know that when winter comes they won’t be able to keep warm; We see fear on the faces of people on the news virtually every day. And we know there are countless people whose faces we never see, who live in fear. victims of domestic violence, who wait in dread for a partner’s return home; people who are bullied at work or at school, who wake in trepidation of what the new day will bring; people who’ve been threatened on social media, and fear going out of the house. There’s an abundance of fear in our world – fear that shuts life down, that shrinks horizons, that lurks in people’s hearts and minds, that causes untold anxiety. We find Abram full of anxiety in our reading from Genesis. He’s exhausted from tribal warfare, living in the insecurity of the wilderness, and beside himself that he has no descendants, and no future to live for. Whilst he’s in this terrible state, God comes to him in a dream. “Do not be afraid, Abram”, he says. Against all the odds as it looked from Abram’s point of view he and his far- from-young wife Sarai will have a son, and he will reach the promised land, and his descendants will be as numerous as the stars in the night sky. “Do not be afraid, Abram”, God says. Jesus, as we encounter him in Luke’s Gospel, has been in conversation with people who seem to have no end of worries people who are worried about not having enough money, people who are worried about what they are going to eat, or wear, and so on. He tells them not to worry about any of those things, because God knows their needs and will provide. They should concentrate on being rich towards God and on lasting treasure. “Do not be afraid, little flock”, he says “for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” So he tells them to sell their possessions, to give alms, and to make purses for themselves that do not wear out. He urges them to embrace insecurity, and to be alert and ready for action. In the midst of his fear, Abram is instructed to look at the stars. In the darkest times of our lives, when everything seems to be crowding in on us, and we have no room to breathe or move, perhaps we would do well to look at the stars. In the darkness of the night sky, they are a reminder of light pinpricks which help us to see beyond our fear. They tell us that it is not fear that holds the earth and the universe on course, but something stronger, something of greater ultimate significance. A spark of hope shines in the sky. “Do not be afraid”, Jesus says to us. The Christian story tells us, in what happens to Jesus and his followers, that love conquers fear. Whatever’s happening to us in our lives, there’s another kingdom, another space, where love reigns, where true treasure lies, where life is in all its fullness. We can be worried about what is coming to us in the midst of the night, or we can be alert and ready to embrace Jesus and the Kingdom. When you walk through the waters, when the fire is burning all around you, when the fear of loneliness is looming, when you dwell in the exile of the stranger, I’ll be with you – the song says. “Do not be afraid, for I have redeemed you. I have called you by your name; you are mine.” Intercessions We pray… for those living on the edge, in fear of the future: bless them with a deepening sense of hope and trust in you; Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. for those caught up in the ways of the world, relying on worldly treasures: give them a blessing of release and joy in you; Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. for those battling with ill health: give them the blessing of strengthening hope and healing; Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. for all who have the responsibility of leading your flock: give them your blessing of wisdom and strength. Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. Lord, you watch and protect. Strengthen all who are in need with an unshakeable trust in you; give them a glimpse of the treasures that are theirs when they put their hope in you. As you answer our prayers, give us and all your people everything we need to be faithful to you and to proclaim your Word to the ends of the earth. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen. Worship Song Spirit of God ~ the Flame of love Lyrics and Chord Sheet Closing Prayers Loving God: you have given me eyes to see the beauty and bounty of your earth, and a mind to understand the importance of sharing your gifts. Make me quick to see injustice and suffering, and generous to do what I can to alleviate either when I come across them. God … protect me. Jesus … lead me. Holy Spirit … guide me. Amen. Through everything I experience this coming week, with all its ups and downs and various emotions … … help me to hold fast to the joy and hope your resurrection brings. ____________________________________________ Postlude Two Aquarelles Frederick Delius Cond. Daniel Baraboim ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Don’t forget that this service is available 24/7 at work, at home and, for those in greatest need, in hospital.
Worship
St. Leonard, Clent
© Clent PCC
Saint Leonard’s Service for the Eighth Sunday after Trinity Welcome to our OpenCast church service - on-line. There are prayers, readings, hymns and music; just as you would have in church. To hear the music and the readings, click on each title (red, underlined text) (and remember to adjust the volume on your speakers). We come together to worship God. Let us pray: Living God, as we come into your presence, open our hands and hearts to the treasure of your unconditional love for us, inspire us with the treasure of your compassion and forgiveness, and fill us with the treasure of your Spirit. Amen. Hymn: We plough the fields and scatter the good seed We praise the Lord Loving God, we praise and thank you for all the lasting treasures you give us. Help us, each day, to live with honour and goodness, and as we wait and trust in you, to be ready for whatever you lead us to do; through Jesus Christ our Lord. We praise you, always. Bible Readings: Old Testament: Psalm: New Testament: Gospel: Isaiah 1.10-20 50 1-8, 23-24 Hebrews 11.1-3, 8-16 Luke 12.32-40 Text Text Text Text Audio Audio Audio Audio Collect Lord God, your Son left the riches of heaven and became poor for our sake: when we prosper save us from pride, when we are needy save us from despair, that we may trust in you alone; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Special Prayer for these times God of peace and justice, we pray for the people of Ukraine today. We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons. We pray for all those who fear for tomorrow, that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them. We pray for those with power over war or peace, for wisdom, discernment and compassion to guide their decisions. Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear, that you would hold and protect them. We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace. Amen Archbishop Justin Welby Archbishop Stephen Cottrell Reflection These are the opening words of our Old Testament reading: “The word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, ‘Do not be afraid, Abram’” And these are the opening words of our Gospel reading: “Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Do not be afraid, little flock’”. I’m told that the phrase “Do not be afraid” occurs more than any other in the Bible. I went through my Biblical Concordance looking for that phrase, when I was preparing for this reflection, and found that the phrase “Do not be afraid” occurs in the Bible some 23 times 13 times in the Old Testament, and 10 times in the New Testament and of those 10, 6 of them are spoken by Jesus. So people being afraid is a recurring concern throughout the Bible, and not least to Jesus himself as he encounters people. Living in fear is a terrible thing, isn’t it. We see it in people’s faces virtually every day on our TV screens. We see it in the faces of Ukrainians, as they come under constant bombardment from Russia; We see it in the faces of people as they watch wildfires approach and destroy their property and their homes; We see it in the faces of people who have no money to put in the gas meter, so they can’t cook, and know that when winter comes they won’t be able to keep warm; We see fear on the faces of people on the news virtually every day. And we know there are countless people whose faces we never see, who live in fear. victims of domestic violence, who wait in dread for a partner’s return home; people who are bullied at work or at school, who wake in trepidation of what the new day will bring; people who’ve been threatened on social media, and fear going out of the house. There’s an abundance of fear in our world – fear that shuts life down, that shrinks horizons, that lurks in people’s hearts and minds, that causes untold anxiety. We find Abram full of anxiety in our reading from Genesis. He’s exhausted from tribal warfare, living in the insecurity of the wilderness, and beside himself that he has no descendants, and no future to live for. Whilst he’s in this terrible state, God comes to him in a dream. “Do not be afraid, Abram”, he says. Against all the odds as it looked from Abram’s point of view he and his far-from-young wife Sarai will have a son, and he will reach the promised land, and his descendants will be as numerous as the stars in the night sky. “Do not be afraid, Abram”, God says. Jesus, as we encounter him in Luke’s Gospel, has been in conversation with people who seem to have no end of worries people who are worried about not having enough money, people who are worried about what they are going to eat, or wear, and so on. He tells them not to worry about any of those things, because God knows their needs and will provide. They should concentrate on being rich towards God and on lasting treasure. “Do not be afraid, little flock”, he says “for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” So he tells them to sell their possessions, to give alms, and to make purses for themselves that do not wear out. He urges them to embrace insecurity, and to be alert and ready for action. In the midst of his fear, Abram is instructed to look at the stars. In the darkest times of our lives, when everything seems to be crowding in on us, and we have no room to breathe or move, perhaps we would do well to look at the stars. In the darkness of the night sky, they are a reminder of light pinpricks which help us to see beyond our fear. They tell us that it is not fear that holds the earth and the universe on course, but something stronger, something of greater ultimate significance. A spark of hope shines in the sky. “Do not be afraid”, Jesus says to us. The Christian story tells us, in what happens to Jesus and his followers, that love conquers fear. Whatever’s happening to us in our lives, there’s another kingdom, another space, where love reigns, where true treasure lies, where life is in all its fullness. We can be worried about what is coming to us in the midst of the night, or we can be alert and ready to embrace Jesus and the Kingdom. When you walk through the waters, when the fire is burning all around you, when the fear of loneliness is looming, when you dwell in the exile of the stranger, I’ll be with you – the song says. “Do not be afraid, for I have redeemed you. I have called you by your name; you are mine.” Intercessions We pray… for those living on the edge, in fear of the future: bless them with a deepening sense of hope and trust in you; Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. for those caught up in the ways of the world, relying on worldly treasures: give them a blessing of release and joy in you; Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. for those battling with ill health: give them the blessing of strengthening hope and healing; Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. for all who have the responsibility of leading your flock: give them your blessing of wisdom and strength. Lord hear us, Lord, graciously hear us. Lord, you watch and protect. Strengthen all who are in need with an unshakeable trust in you; give them a glimpse of the treasures that are theirs when they put their hope in you. As you answer our prayers, give us and all your people everything we need to be faithful to you and to proclaim your Word to the ends of the earth. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen. Worship Song Spirit of God ~ the Flame of love Lyrics and Chord Sheet Closing Prayers Loving God: you have given me eyes to see the beauty and bounty of your earth, and a mind to understand the importance of sharing your gifts. Make me quick to see injustice and suffering, and generous to do what I can to alleviate either when I come across them. God … protect me. Jesus … lead me. Holy Spirit … guide me. Amen. Through everything I experience this coming week, with all its ups and downs and various emotions … … help me to hold fast to the joy and hope your resurrection brings. ____________________________________________ Postlude Two Aquarelles Frederick Delius Cond. Daniel Baraboim _________________________________________ Don’t forget that this service is available 24/7 at work, at home and, for those in greatest need, in hospital.