Sunday worship – 28th June 2020 – 3rd Sunday after Trinity

Welcome to worship today, which has been planned and led by our lay worship planning team. The service is led by Liz Crawshaw, who is currently training to be a reader. As usual, there is a playlist set up at the top to play the whole service, including hymns. Or you can go down the page and play each video separately, or read the words if you prefer.

If you are reading this before Sunday morning at 11.30am, please join us at our Zoom Coffee. Details available from Revd Liz – see the contact page on the main menu.

YouTube Playlist

Service written out in full

CALL TO WORSHIP

Let us worship God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Amen

The Lord be with you,
And also with you.

This is the day that the Lord has made.
We will rejoice and be glad in it.

Lord, direct our thoughts and teach us to pray.
Lift up our hearts to worship you in spirit and in truth,
Through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Hymn

Reflection from Sian

Today is the first lay-led service since the announcement that Revd Liz will be leaving the Byland Churches later in the year. Deep down I wasn’t surprised. We have been privileged to benefit from Liz’s calling and her talents which have guided and taught us and grown us in faith – and we kind of knew that she would eventually have to be shared; that we couldn’t keep her for always.

So we’re sad and feeling somewhat vulnerable with a vacancy looming – how will we cope without our leader?

It strikes me that this is remarkably similar to how the disciples must have been feeling as Jesus prepared them for His departure – as we’ve been hearing in Matthews Gospel Chapter 10 over the last two weeks and concluding today.

We too have been well prepared (in our case by Revd Liz) and are now being called to continue without her; to continue learning how to be the sent church in our communities and to be Jesus’ disciples here and now.

Daunting as that task is, I am hugely reassured by the words in our Gospel reading today. In the version from The Message Bible, Jesus says “Give a cool cup of water to someone who is thirsty … the smallest action of giving or receiving makes you a true apprentice”. How great is that? – whatever we are able to do, however small it might seem, Jesus says that we all do have something to offer. And of course we aren’t really alone – the Holy Spirit will guide us, as it did those first disciples.

And we have each other: working and praying together, with God’s help there is potential to turn this vacancy from something we really wish wasn’t going to happen, into an opportunity to grow our Byland Churches together – in faith , in service and, who knows, even in numbers.

Confession and assurance of forgiveness

Most merciful God,
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
We confess that we have sinned
In thought, word and deed.
We have not loved you with our whole heart.
We have not loved our neighbours as ourselves.
In your mercy
forgive what we have been,
help us to amend what we are,
and direct what we shall be;
that we may do justly,
love mercy,
and walk humbly with you, our God.
Amen.

Almighty God,
who in Jesus Christ
has given us a kingdom
that cannot be destroyed,
forgive us our sins,
open our eyes to God’s truth,
strengthen us to do God’s will
and give us the joy
of his kingdom,
through Jesus Christ
our Lord.
Amen.

Blessed is the Lord,
For he has heard the voice of our prayer;
therefore shall our hearts dance for joy,
and in our song we will praise our God.

Prayer for the week – Collect

Almighty God,
you have broken the tyranny of sin
and have sent the Spirit of your Son into our hearts
whereby we call you Father:
give us grace to dedicate our freedom to your service,
that we and all creation may be brought
to the glorious liberty of the children of God;
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 forever.
Amen.

Hymn

Readings

Romans 6:12-23

This is the word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Matthew 10:40-42

This is the word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Sermon – Roy Collard, Recognised Parish Assistant

Are you someone who responds well to a challenge? Or, to put it another way, have you needed challenges in your life to help you to develop or grow?

Perhaps running a marathon has been something to inspire you, or rebuilding a house or a car from scratch or even climbing every Munro in Scotland. I’m in awe of people who set themselves such challenges, people like Nick Bailey, the Salisbury policemen whose story was on TV a couple of weeks ago, who set himself the challenge of running a marathon as part of his recovery from being poisoned. I can’t say that physical challenges have ever motivated me – nowadays, reading a long Victorian novel, or mastering the two types of subjunctive in German grammar are the sort of challenges that provoke me.

Twelve years ago, we attended the memorial service in St Paul’s for Chad Varah, the founder of the Samaritans, and a gauntlet was thrown down to us all – “You’re here today to celebrate the life of a great Brit – now what are you going to do to continue his work?” I really didn’t think I could do it – talk to strangers in the middle of the night who could be suicidal, pick up a phone not knowing what depth of despair a caller might have reached. I responded to the challenge, and I’m glad I did. It’s made me realise just how vital that action of taking up a challenge is to us all. Not only does it provide motivation and a sense of achievement when you’ve conquered it, but I find it gives a greater understanding of myself and my own weakness – an insight into human nature if you like. Responding to a challenge is neither easy nor painless, but it can make us more innovative, more creative and test us to a particular limit.

Why do I say all this about challenges? Simply because it seems to me that the two readings this morning, from Matthew’s gospel and Paul’s letter to the Romans have something in common – a reminder to us all of the challenges we are set in being a Christian. And two of the greatest challenges of our Christian life are letting God work through us and maintaining our discipline in our Christian journey.

The three verses from Matthew come at the end of more than a chapter of instructions that Christ gives to his first disciples, the body of which we have studied over the last two Sundays. Christ tells the disciples their task of spreading His word will not be easy, and in these last three verses He summarises how they will be received and treated, and how they will be rewarded. Through this, there is of course the challenge for us, for we are the inheritors of those disciples. Christ tells us of the opportunities we are given to meet and serve our maker and by talking about the potential rewards, there is – by implication – the alternative if we don’t take these opportunities. It’s our choice, how do we respond? Are we obedient? Do we follow because we have to or because we want to? The challenge here is to let God work through us and to do His work, just as those twelve disciples did two thousand years ago.

In writing to the Romans, Paul develops further what is meant by this challenge of obedience in a Christian life. He understands the weakness of our humanity and how, even after we have chosen a Christian life as opposed to the life of a sinner, it is all too easy to slide back into the temptations of the old life, or as he puts it – to the life of impurity and wickedness. We walk a tightrope of temptation between vice and virtue. But our challenge is to accept the grace of God and to let God work though us. To impress upon us the importance of this teaching, Paul uses graphic images – of slavery. And perhaps this may shock us. It’s not difficult to understand what he means by being a slave to sin. But being a slave to righteousness seems at first sight to be contradictory, but perhaps that’s because of our twenty first century response to anything that uses the word slave or slavery. Two thousand years ago such an image was a part of everyday life. Being a slave to righteousness is obeying God, is accepting the teaching of the gospels and accepting that our life of sin is behind us. This life demands a discipline from us, a self-discipline that keeps us on a road to eternal life through following God’s will.

Our challenges, as Christians, then, are to let God work through us and to discipline ourselves to a life of righteousness.

During the past few months we have all been provided with challenges, some of them pretty daunting – not being able to grieve with friends and family, not being able to be with grandchildren, parents, family or friends, coping with loneliness, feeling confined and restrained, our freedoms curtailed, living in fear or anxiety of contracting the virus, for both ourselves and our loved ones and of fearing for the future. We’ve had to respond in the same way we do as human beings to all challenges – by persevering, by relying on our inner strength and as Christians by prayer and by reminding ourselves that God is with us in our struggles and adversity as much as He is in times of joy. By accepting God’s grace, we know that we pursue His teaching, we know that we accept the discipline of loving Him and of loving our neighbour as ourselves. We have all experienced the love of neighbours, near and far, we have all given and we have all received. Through telephone, Zoom, Skype and FaceTime we have maintained connections and given and received succour, through sharing words of encouragement and concern with fellow villagers as we meet them on our walks, through collecting or receiving prescriptions, sharing food deliveries, clapping together on Thursday evenings, simply offering or receiving a hand or an act of kindness whenever and wherever we can. I have heard of so many examples of individuals diligently making scrubs for medics, masks for friends and neighbours, and headbands for nurses and doctors to ease the stress of wearing masks and shields. No act of kindness will go unnoticed in God’s kingdom, as Jesus reminds his disciples – “whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones ………none of these will lose their reward.”

For me, a greater challenge lies ahead – as I’m sure it does for all of us. How will we as Christians respond after the lockdown has eased further and life has returned to something more normal? Will we maintain the discipline of obedience by continuing the acts of kindness that have cemented our communities? By continuing to remember friends and family with whom we have re-established connections? Will we continue to be loyal customers to the small local businesses and individuals who have adapted so well to the economic crisis by making deliveries to us – the farm shops, the meal providers, the local grocery deliveries – or will we slide back to supermarkets? How will we respond to those around us – and in the country as a whole – who are going to be affected by the economic and social hardship that will inevitably come? How can we reach out to those most in peril as food banks are relied on more and more and unemployment has its inevitable toll?

I guess the answer to all these questions is by letting God work through us, by responding to those challenges that Jesus gives His disciples, by following the discipline to righteousness that Paul spells out to the Romans.

For as Christ reminds us, every act of kindness will be rewarded. And as Paul concludes, whilst the wages of sin is death, the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Affirmation of faith

We believe in God the Father,
From whom every family in heaven and on earth is named.

We believe in God the Son,
Who lives in our hearts through faith, and fills us with love.

We believe in God the Holy Spirit,
Who strengthens us with power from on high.
We believe in one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Amen

Prayers

We pray for wholeness in the body of Christ across our world – for justice, peace, and healing. Bind up fractures within the Church we pray; humble the proud and lift up the lowly.
We pray for Stephen Cottrell as he prepares to take up the role of Archbishop of York. May your Holy Spirit guide and support him through all the hope and expectation that his ministry will entail.

Lord of our world: Send us your peace

We give thanks for your wonderful universe – for the song of the birds, the light of the stars, the majesty of the mountains, the beauty and productivity of the fields.
Mould us into stewards of your creation. We pray that concern and care for our world may remain high on our agenda as we come out of the trials of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Lord of our world: Send us your peace

We pray for peacemakers around the world and for those with position and authority to implement necessary change.
We pray for your continued presence and power to inspire and lead them – that they will hear Your voice.
We pray for an end to violence, for restoration of broken communities and for love for all our neighbours regardless of who they are.
May the forgotten, the lost and the hungry know you are with them and feel your comfort.
Reign with justice and peace in all the corners of your world, we pray.
Give us courage and selflessness as we learn how to emerge from lockdown and we pray for your guidance and wisdom in this and all things.

Lord of our world: Send us your peace

We lift to you everyone in our immediate world – our villages and communities, our friends and family – those we see often, those we haven’t been able to see for too long.
We pray for those who are finding it hard to hear you at the moment. Give us all strength and fortitude in this challenging and time.
We remember in our hearts all those we know who are unwell or suffering and need our prayers today…

Lord of our world: Send us your peace

We pray for Liz and Phil, Toby and Jenny as they prepare for new horizons. We give thanks for them as a family and for what they have given to us.
We pray for ourselves as the Byland Churches. As we begin to plan for the vacancy; deepen our faith, expand our discipleship and guide us forward together. Unite us in your love and commitment to share your Good News.
We give thanks for the wonderful variety of gifts and talents across the fellowship of our Churches and pray that, with the help of your Holy Spirit, we will put these to good use together.

Lord of our world: Send us your peace

O Lord, the help of the helpless,
the hope of the hopeless,
the saviour of the storm-tossed,
the harbour of voyagers, the physician of the sick;
we pray to you.
O Lord, you know each of us and our petitions;
you know each house and its needs;
receive us all into your kingdom;
make us children of light,
and bestow your peace and love upon us.
Amen

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
As we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power
And the glory are yours, now and forever.
Amen

Offering

Gracious God accept our
gifts and, with them, our lives
to be used in your service.
Amen.

Blessing

May the power of
Christ heal us,
the eyes of Christ
gaze upon us,
and the peace of Christ
shine through us,
today and evermore;
and may the blessing
of God Almighty,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
be amongst us and
remain with us always.
Amen.

Sending out

We go into the world in the name of Christ,
with the love of God
And in the power of the Spirit.
We go, but we do not go alone.
We go together and Christ goes with us.
Amen

Copyright Notices

Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Common Worship, material from which is included in this service, is copyright © The Archbishops’ Council.

Sunday Worship 21st June – 2nd Sunday after Trinity

Welcome to worship today. As usual, there is a playlist set up at the top to play the whole service, including hymns. Or you can go down the page and play each video separately, or read the words if you prefer.

If you are reading this before Sunday morning at 11.30am, please join us at our Zoom Coffee. Details available from Revd Liz.

YouTube Playlist

Service written out

In the name of the Father,
and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

Grace, mercy and peace
from God our Father
and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
And also with you.

Hymn

Prayer of preparation

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.

Our Lord Jesus Christ said:
The first commandment is this:
‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is the only Lord.
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, with all your mind,
and with all your strength.’

The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’
There is no other commandment greater than these.
On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Amen. Lord, have mercy.

Prayers of Penitence

God so loved the world
that he gave his only Son Jesus Christ
to save us from our sins,
to be our advocate in heaven,
and to bring us to eternal life.
Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith,
firmly resolved to keep God’s commandments
and to live in love and peace with all.

Silence

Most merciful God,
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
we confess that we have sinned
in thought, word and deed.
We have not loved you with our whole heart.
We have not loved our neighbours as ourselves.
In your mercy
forgive what we have been,
help us to amend what we are,
and direct what we shall be;
that we may do justly, love mercy,
and walk humbly with you, our God.
Amen.

Almighty God, who forgives all who truly repent,
have mercy upon us,
pardon and deliver us from all our sins,
confirm and strengthen us in all goodness,
and keep us in life eternal;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Gloria

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.

The Collect – Prayer for the week

Lord, you have taught us
that all our doings without love are nothing worth:
send your Holy Spirit
and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of love,
the true bond of peace and of all virtues,
without which whoever lives is counted dead before you.
Grant this for your only Son 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

Bible reading

Jeremiah 20: 7-13

Psalm 69: 8-11, 18-20

We haven’t often used the psalms in our worship unless in Book of Common Prayer services. I am taking the opportunity this summer to include them again. The great richness of the psalms is in the variety of emotions that they show. Truly we can bring anything that we are feeling to God.

For your sake have I suffered reproach;
shame has covered my face.

I have become a stranger to my kindred,
an alien to my mother’s children.

Zeal for your house has eaten me up;
the scorn of those who scorn you has fallen upon me.

I humbled myself with fasting,
but that was turned to my reproach.

Answer me, Lord, for your loving-kindness is good;
turn to me in the multitude of your mercies.

Hide not your face from your servant;
be swift to answer me, for I am in trouble.

Draw near to my soul and redeem me;
deliver me because of my enemies.

Hymn

Gospel Reading

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

Matthew 10: 24-39

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

Sermon – the Revd Liz Hassall

I’d like you to start by bringing to mind a person. Someone you know well and respect. Now imagine that they have said something completely out of character. Maybe they’ve suddenly sworn at you or said something blatantly racist, or made a mean comment about someone else.

How do you feel?

It shakes you, doesn’t it? Suddenly, that person isn’t the one you thought they were and it makes you re-evaluate who they are and how much respect you should have for them.

The gospel passage is a bit like that for me. Suddenly, Jesus seems to be acting out of character. This is not the lovely friendly Jesus that we tend to imagine. This is the Jesus who had a difficult message to bring to his followers, which they didn’t want to hear and we don’t really like to hear either.

This, however, is the real Jesus. What’s the point of knowing someone only on the surface? We can all be polite to each other but it is only when we let down our guard that we really know each other, warts and all.

When you look at a passage from the gospels, the first thing to do is figure out who is speaking. Here, it’s Jesus. Then, you need to see who they are speaking to. Is it the crowds? Or the Pharisees? Here, it is the disciples – the closest followers of Jesus, the ones who knew him best. He’s getting ready to send the disciples out on mission as healers and preachers in their own right. They’ve learnt enough from him and now it is time to go and see what they can manage without his constant presence.

I’m guessing that the disciples were going into this without any real idea of what was going to happen. Jesus is trying to explain to them, but they won’t really understand until they have gone and discovered how much people will reject them and what sacrifice they are being called to make.

The whole point of this passage is to prepare the disciples for an unfriendly welcome and the potential danger of working in mission. They may very well be in danger, but Jesus reassures them of the love that God has for each of them. He reassures them of the value that they have to God as people and there is a reminder of the promise of eternal life, which can’t be harmed by any earthly foe.

So far, so good. Then Jesus makes that unusual statement:

“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.”

Hang on, you might say – isn’t Jesus called the Prince of Peace? Now he’s saying he isn’t coming to bring peace.

Jesus then goes onto talking about a household. In that culture it was usual for a bride to move to live with her groom and in-laws. So, the three comparisons: turning a man against his father, a daughter against her mother and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law – these could all be within a single household. The household was the most important unit in Jewish life. Your family ties were the most important ties.

The sword that Jesus is bringing is a sword that will cut through those ties because what Jesus is asking is for a commitment to him that is deeper and more important even than the ties to family.

When Jesus says “I have not come to bring peace”, I think he is talking about that superficial peace that you strive for among family members, that papers over the cracks and allows you to keep sharing a house amicably despite differences of politics or religion. It may come to the point where you have to stand up for the Jesus way at the expense of a peaceful and quiet life. It may come to the point when you have to challenge a parent or child on their life-choices because you can’t keep your integrity before Jesus unless you do. That is the sword that can divide us from our families.

This is radical stuff, challenging and not for the faint-hearted.

What it comes down to is this – for us as well as for the first disciples – when we acknowledge that Jesus is Lord, we have to recognise that our loyalty to him is the most fundamental tie we have, above all ties of family or friendship.

Perhaps when you hear that, you think “well that’s going a bit too far, isn’t it”? That’s a fair comment. It is a hugely demanding call and one which is not easy to follow wholeheartedly. Still, if Jesus really is the Son of God and the Saviour of All, can there be anything more important than that?

It is unlikely for each of us that Jesus will call us completely away from our families, but we may well have to stand up to them for what is right and for the sake of the things that Jesus taught.

Jesus goes on, saying “anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me”

It is not a mistake that Jesus picked out the ties between parent and child for a demonstration of how we are to relate to him. Parents are hard-wired to love their children. When you have a small baby or child you have a biological imperative to do anything to protect them. Jesus did not say: do not love your children or love your children less than you do now. He said love him more. That is the challenge to live up to. We are to strive to give God a place in our lives equal or higher to the place we give our families.

So how do you feel about Jesus now, in the light of this passage? Have you learned something more about him? Is it something shocking enough to change your view of him, or can you still follow him?

In all of this we need to remind ourselves who Jesus is. Any normal human who came and demanded this kind of sacrifice would be a tyrant and utterly unreasonable. Jesus can demand our full lives because he offers so much in return. Yes, he asks for our full capitulation to his Lordship, but he is Lord. He is God. Through him we gain access to the overwhelming saving love of God. That same God who counts the hairs on our heads and values even the sparrows. No matter how much we love Jesus, he will always love us more.

So, are you willing to try and answer that call of Jesus to be a disciple? Are you willing to sacrifice your wishes and go where God would have you go? Can you trust God to love your household, can you love God enough to stand up for what is right even when your closest loved ones disagree?

I don’t know about you, but I’m going to need help with that. So I’m going back to the Collect for today to ask God to dwell within us and give us the strength to love him more.

Lord, send your Holy Spirit
and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of love,
the true bond of peace and of all virtues.
Amen.

The Nicene Creed

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth, of all that is,
seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God, begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father;
through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven, was incarnate from the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge
the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son is
worshipped and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come.
Amen.

Hymn

Intercessions

As faithful disciples, let us pray to our Lord and Master for the Church and for the world.

The response to the prayers is Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for wisdom for all our church leaders, praying especially for Paul, bishop of Whitby as he leads the diocese at the moment and for Bishop Stephen as he prepares to become our next archbishop. We pray for all church leaders struggling to discern how to balance accessibility of church buildings with keeping people safe.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray that the Word of God will be heard in the dark places where people have not known the power of redeeming love. Have mercy on the weak and vulnerable who are precious in your sight and save them when they are oppressed. We pray for all those in ethnic minorities whose lives are made more difficult by the the colour of their skin. Help us all to be aware of our own privilege and to use that privilege for the good of those who are persecuted.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for our families and for all who live and work nearby. We pray for business owners making difficult decisions and for workers who have been made redundant. Keep our eyes open to the needs of our communities and show us how we can help.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for everyone whose faith is being challenged at the moment, who are finding the burden of the cross too heavy to carry. Give them courage and show us who needs our support.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for all those who are sick, especially those suffering with Covid-19. We pray for those whose treatment has been postponed and those struggling with pain or illness.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those who took up their cross and followed Jesus in this life and have now passed to eternal life with him. May the light of heaven shine upon them as they rise in glory.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Lord Jesus, you show us what life could be.
Help us to plant seeds of hope in places where life is tough,
So that people can find your love and your way.
We offer this small prayer, like a mustard seed,
For your Kingdom to come among us.

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

The Lord’s Prayer

Today, I am using the traditional language Lord’s prayer. Please pray in whichever language or version you prefer.

Let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us

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

Offertory Prayer

God of life, saviour of the poor,
receive with this money
gratitude for your goodness,
penitence for our pride
and dedication to your service
in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Peace

God is love and those who live in love live in God
and God lives in them.

The peace of the Lord be always with you
and also with you.

Hymn

Blessing and Dismissal

The peace of God, which passes all understanding,
keep your hearts and minds
in the knowledge and love of God,
and of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord;
and the blessing of God Almighty,
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,
be with you and remain with you always.
Amen

Go in peace, to love and serve the Lord
In the name of Christ, Amen.

Copyright Notices

Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Common Worship, material from which is included in this service, is copyright © The Archbishops’ Council.

Sunday Worship 14th June 2020 – First Sunday after Trinity

Welcome to worship today. As usual, there is a playlist set up at the top to play the whole service, including hymns. Or you can go down the page and play each video separately, or read the words if you prefer.

If you are reading this before Sunday morning at 11.30am, please join us at our Zoom Coffee. Details available from Revd Liz.

Service written out

Hymn

In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen

The Lord be with you
And also with you

Lord, direct our thoughts, and teach us to pray.
Lift up our hearts to worship you in spirit and in truth,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Confession

Keep silence and reflect on the week

Your love gives us life.
We fail to live as your children.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

You call us to do good.
We seek our own good.

Christ, have mercy. Christ have mercy.

You hear us when we cry for help.
We ignore the cries of others.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy

May the Father of all mercies
cleanse us from our sins,
and restore us in his image
to the praise and glory of his name,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen

The Collect

O God,
the strength of all those who put their trust in you,
mercifully accept our prayers
and, because through the weakness of our mortal nature
we can do no good thing without you,
grant us the help of your grace,
that in the keeping of your commandments
we may please you both in will and deed;
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.

Reading – Psalm 100

Read in your own bible or click below to hear it read.
https://www.biblegateway.com/audio/suchet/nivuk/Ps.100

Hymn

Gospel reading

Matthew 9:35 – 10:8

Sermon – Revd Dr Stephen Pope

As most of you know, the Anglican church likes to think in terms of Ordinary Time and Seasonal Time. Seasonal Time is those periods when we concentrate on special times in the Christian Calendar. There is the Advent and Christmas season. We have just spent about three months in the run of the seasons of Ash Wednesday and Lent through Easter and leading up to Pentecost, finally capping it with Trinity Sunday, which was last week.

Now in the church we are back to Ordinary Time – but it’s not Ordinary Time as we know it. We can’t go inside our church buildings to worship – not on our own, nor as a community. And in the wider world we are in lockdown, which we were sort of getting used to, but now it is being slowly lifted and so routines are changing again. Many of us are longing to be able to see friends and families again, especially the grandchildren. The current racial tensions are not helping either.

And because of all this, and more, somewhere inside of us, and in all sorts of ways, including missing church, we feel lost.

Lost and confused, not knowing when we be able to worship together again. Not being able to join in with our communities in singing God’s praises, with confessing together and hearing the words of forgiveness and absolution together. Not able to receive Holy Communion together. Not able to share news and gossip after the services, no tea, no coffee, no biscuits, not even a special dispensation for Welsh cakes .

Lost, confused, half helpless, knowing something just isn’t right.

What do we do?

To start with, did you notice the parallel with what Jesus noticed about the crowds following Him in our gospel reading?

Matthew records that they were ‘harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd’? What does that mean? It means they were cut off from how they were supposed to live happy and harmonious lives as individuals, as families, as towns and villages and as a nation because the equivalent of a virus had got into the teaching of many of their religious leaders, because those leaders had misunderstood God’s priorities when they interpreted God’s laws.

Like, it was more important to keep the Sabbath than to rescue your animals from danger or accidents. Like it was more important to spend time tithing their garden herbs than to spend time and energy making sure the poor had their rights under the law upheld.

Jesus’ teaching was radically different. People recognised this and were thirsty for more. They noticed Jesus had authority over physical illnesses, and unclean spirits as well, which the lawyers and Pharisees didn’t.

Jesus could see that they were like a sheep without a shepherd. But then, why did he change metaphor and tell the disciples they should ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers into his harvest?

I find it helpful to remember that to the Jews, David, their first King true to God, was also a shepherd, and the harvest is that of people coming into, not so much David’s kingdom, but people coming into God’s kingdom, where they will obey His laws with Love as their priority.

So when Jesus told the disciples they needed to ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers into the harvest, he was saying there needed to be more people doing what He was doing – sharing the good news of God’s kingdom, one that was linked with healing.

Jesus also wanted the disciples to pray and told them to do just that…..pray so that their prayers would touch God’s heart….. and ultimately this would touch their hearts too.

How do we know this? Because Matthew tells us Jesus had compassion for those in the crowds. He recognised that they were feeling harassed and that they were feeling helpless. And it is when we have felt harassed and/or helpless ourselves that we are most likely to recognise it in others and therefore, being aware of it, be able to pray compassionately to God for them.

Compassion may mean being moved greatly. A dramatic example would be the story of the raising of Lazarus. It was not after the theological discussion Jesus had with Martha but seeing Mary weeping that moved Jesus to tears too, and that led to the raising of Lazarus.

Compassion doesn’t always lead to tears – sometimes it means hard graft at making friends with someone despite initially being ignored or rejected. Sometimes it means persistence, patience and gentleness. Sometimes it means doing something that is not our preferred way, purely out of love, so that others can see that Christianity is for real life, not for running away from it.

There are reports people are exploring church in a way they haven’t been doing before, partly because there is so much of it online with our church building being shut up. When we are allowed back into the church buildings for services again, is there scope for making attractiveness for newcomers a higher priority.

There are often no quick or easy answers to these questions. But how we need to look for them.

In our gospel reading, we were told that Jesus told his disciples to pray.

In these strange days, when we are feeling lost about all sorts of things, this is a clue as to where would be a good place to start – spending time praying. It’s not only about praying for others – first we need to know, or sense, God’s compassion for ourselves. Then we can share in His compassion for others, which makes it easier to recognise how we can help ourselves and our neighbours to walk more closely with Him. Remembering that Prayer is Conversation, and so leaving time at the end to listen is also good. I’ve even known having a good argument with God lead me to an aspect of Him I hadn’t been aware of before, and so to an improved relationship with Him.

Finally, however fast or slowly things happen, we can still rejoice as we remember that God wants His Kingdom to grow – and He wants us to share in the work and the glory of it.

Amen.

Affirmation of faith

Let us declare our faith in God.

We believe in God the Father,
from whom every family
in heaven and on earth is named.

We believe in God the Son,
who lives in our hearts through faith,
and fills us with his love.

We believe in God the Holy Spirit,
who strengthens us with power from on high.

We believe in one God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.

Hymn

Intercessions

We pray that Christ may be seen in the life of the Church.

Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy, hear us.

You have called us into the family of those who are
the children of God.
May our love for our brothers and sisters
be strengthened by your grace.

Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy, hear us.

You have called us to be a temple
where the Holy Spirit can dwell.
Give us clean hands and pure hearts,
so that our lives will reflect your holiness.

Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy, hear us.

You have called us to be a light to the world,
so that those in darkness come to you.
May our lives shine
as a witness to the saving grace you have given for all.

Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy, hear us.

You have called us to be members of your body,
so that when one suffers, all suffer together.
We ask for your comfort and healing power
to bring hope to those in distress.

Jesus, Lord of the Church,
in your mercy, hear us.

You have called us to be the Bride,
where you, Lord, are the Bridegroom.
Prepare us for the wedding feast,
where we will be united with you for ever.

Jesus, Lord of the Church,
hear our prayer,
and make us one in heart and mind
to serve you with joy for ever.
Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

Let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us

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

Offertory Prayer

Holy Spirit, we thank you for coming upon the Church and inhabiting the lives of Christian disciples. We offer you these financial gifts in gratitude and to express our desire for all your gifts to us to bear fruit in our lives. Amen

Blessing and Sending Out

May Christ’s holy, healing and enabling Spirit
be with you and guide you on your way
at every change and turn;
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
In the name of Christ, Amen.

Hymn

Copyright Notices

Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Common Worship, material from which is included in this service, is copyright © The Archbishops’ Council.

Sunday Worship 7th June 2020 – Trinity Sunday

Welcome to worship today. As usual, there is a playlist set up at the top to play the whole service, including hymns. Or you can go down the page and play each video separately, or read the words if you prefer.

If you are reading this before Sunday morning at 11.30am, please join us at our Zoom Coffee. Details available from Revd Liz.

Service written out

In the name of the Father,
and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

Grace, mercy and peace
from God our Father
and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
And also with you.

Prayer of preparation

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.

Our Lord Jesus Christ said:
The first commandment is this:
‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is the only Lord.
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, with all your mind,
and with all your strength.’
The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’
There is no other commandment greater than these.
On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Amen. Lord, have mercy.

Prayers of Penitence

God the Father forgives us in Christ and heals us by the Holy Spirit.
Let us therefore put away all anger and bitterness,
all slander and malice,
and confess our sins to God our redeemer.

Silence

Most merciful God,
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
we confess that we have sinned
in thought, word and deed.
We have not loved you with our whole heart.
We have not loved our neighbours as ourselves.
In your mercy
forgive what we have been,
help us to amend what we are,
and direct what we shall be;
that we may do justly, love mercy,
and walk humbly with you, our God.
Amen.

Almighty God, who forgives all who truly repent,
have mercy upon us,
pardon and deliver us from all our sins,
confirm and strengthen us in all goodness,
and keep us in life eternal;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Collect – Prayer for the week

Almighty and everlasting God,
you have given us your servants grace,
by the confession of a true faith,
to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity
and in the power of the divine majesty to worship the Unity:
keep us steadfast in this faith,
that we may evermore be defended from all adversities;
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

Bible reading

Isaiah 40: 12-17,

Isaiah 40: 27-31

Hymn

Take my life – not the tune I am most familiar with, but I really like it and if you want to see the words you will need to select Closed captioning

Gospel

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

Matthew 28: 16-20

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

Sermon – The Revd Liz Hassall

When I say the word God, I wonder what it makes you think of. God. What image is in your mind right now? If we were in church I would be asking you to respond aloud and share it because I can guarantee that whatever image is in your mind would be different to that of other people. When we talk about God we bring a whole bundle of memories and stories and concepts to the table.

We can talk of God the creator, who made all things, Father God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, The God who put the rainbow in the sky over Noah’s ark, the God who guided David to defeat Goliath. The God who appeared to the abandoned woman Hagar and saved her and her son Ishmael, the God who is the still small voice.

We can talk of God the redeemer. Jesus, who lived on earth, growing from infant to adult, a radical teacher who cut through niceties to speak against injustice, who challenged the religious leaders of the day and spent time with those cast out from society, who died and rose again, who gave himself up so our sins can be forgiven.

We can talk about God the Holy Spirit, who we celebrated last week with tongues of flame, who appears as a Dove showing us the way to peace, who whispers in our minds and draws us closer to the way God would have us follow.

All these ideas and stories come together in that one word. God. God is more than we can imagine, God is a celebration in diversity, God is for everyone and we are all made in the image of God. Today is Trinity Sunday and we celebrate the unity of God seen in the trinity of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Trinity is not just an obscure doctrine. It tells us more about God, and helps us to see how God relates to us.

This week, we have all seen some of the consequences of racism, which have been evident following the killing of George Floyd in America. Now I can’t speak about the impact of racism – it isn’t my place to do that. As a white person, however, it is my place to speak up and say that racism is fundamentally wrong and fundamentally opposed to the gospel of Jesus Christ which we follow and we have to do something about it.

The passage from the Gospel of Matthew which we heard today is the very end of the Gospel. The final words. It is Jesus’ last message to his disciples and it is uncompromising in its inclusivity.

The word ALL is there four times. Jesus is given ALL authority. The disciples are told to make disciples of ALL nations, baptising them and teaching them ALL the things commanded by Jesus and Jesus will be with us for ALL the days. Some translations reword it, but it’s clear in the original language.

What does this inclusivity mean? It means that Jesus is for everyone, always, everywhere. His good news is good news for everyone, always, everywhere. The invitation to baptism is for everyone always, everywhere.

But it is not enough just to say that. It is easy to say that Church is for everyone but, unless we listen to the people who are excluded, and act to include them, those are just empty words.

We are all made in the image of God. When we look around at a group of people, each person there is made in the image of God and, as we piece together our knowledge of those people, we get closer to understanding what it means to be in the image of God. Any time that we exclude or drive away a person or group of people, we are missing the gift of God which is in them.

But that makes it sound as if the tragedy of racism is all about what we miss out on, which it isn’t. Racism is about a society which is unfair, unjust, and cruel. We are part of a system where the colour of your skin affects your life expectancy as well as many other aspects of life. As a white person, my life is easier, and I have done nothing to deserve that.

So what are we meant to do about it? First we are meant to listen – listen to the stories of those who experience racism and understand that it isn’t just happening over on the other side of the world but here too and not just in the cities either but out here in our villages.

Second, we should pray, and in doing so learn more of the abundant love of God, Father Son and Holy Spirit, for all of God’s children. Ask God to show us where we are complicit in a racist society and change it.

Thirdly, we should be brave enough to work against injustice, to build a Church and a society in our own communities that is actively anti-racist. This week our archbishops stated that “racism is an affront to God. It is born out of ignorance and must be eradicated. We all bear the responsibility and must play our part to eliminate this scourge on humanity.

At the very simplest level, it is not allowing racist remarks from family and friends to go unchallenged, but we can do much more. I will leave you to think about what that might be.

And in all this we have to be prepared to be told repeatedly that we aren’t getting it right and we have to take that with good grace and not be discouraged.

I started by talking about God. About all the different ways we can meet God and know God. And when we know God, we then have responsibility in joining in with the work of His body on earth, His Church. We are the inheritors of Jesus’ promises to his disciples. We have the responsibility to teach all that Jesus commanded to all nations: to teach that gospel of love and inclusion for the outcast and abandoned, and that gospel of challenge to those in positions of power and privilege. And in all that we can be confident that Jesus will be with us always, to the very end of the age.

Creed

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth, of all that is,
seen and unseen.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God, begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father;
through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven, was incarnate from the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge
the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son is
worshipped and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come.
Amen.

Intercessions – led by Sian

Response: God of love, hear our prayer

Closing prayer –
O God beyond us, give us faith.
O God, beside us, give us peace.

O God within us, give us life.
Ever One, Sacred Three, Holy God the Trinity. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

Today, I am using the traditional language Lord’s prayer. Please pray in whichever language or version you prefer.

Let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us

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

Offertory Prayer

Almighty God, we worship in the name of the one to whom all authority is given – Jesus Christ.  As we offer you this money, you ask us to renew our commitment to be your faith-filled disciples.  May our lifestyles reflect a desire to be in mission for others.  In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we pray.  Amen.

The Peace

Peace to you from God our heavenly Father.
Peace from his Son Jesus Christ who is our peace.
Peace from the Holy Spirit, the life-giver.
The peace of the triune God be always with you
and also with you.

If we were in Church today, I would be making an announcement. I know many of you will already have heard this from the notice sheet, but I thought I would say it here too.

Dr John Sentamu, Archbishop of York, is pleased to announce the
appointment of the Revd Liz Hassall as Priest-in-Charge of the York
City Centre Group, comprising St Olave with St Giles, St Denys, St
Helen Stonegate with St Martin Coney Street, and All Saints
Pavement with St Crux and St Michael Spurriergate. This is fully
endorsed by the Representatives of these parishes.
Liz is currently Rector of Coxwold with Husthwaite, and Crayke with
Brandsby and Yearsley, having been ordained deacon and priest in
this Diocese.
Liz writes, “I am delighted to have been offered the post of Priest-in- Charge at the City Centre Group and I am looking forward to taking
up this new challenge, trusting in the Spirit to lead us all in our
worship and mission in the City of York.”
Subject to any public health restrictions, Liz will be licensed to her
new role in the days leading up to Christmas 2020.

That’s the end of the statement. I know for many of you, this will have come as a shock. We have been so happy here in these villages and it will be a real wrench to leave here. However, as I followed God’s calling in coming more than seven years ago, so I am also following in leaving. I am excited and looking forward to new things, but there are still six months until we leave and I hope in that time to be able to work hard here in discovering what our church communities will look like following the pandemic. I’m really grateful for all the messages of support that I have received. There will be time for goodbyes later. In the mean-time please pray for us as a family of churches, for our family and for the City Centre.

Blessing and Dismissal

God the Holy Trinity make you strong in faith and love,
defend you on every side,
and guide you in truth and peace;
and the blessing of God Almighty,
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,
be with you and remain with you always.
Amen

Go in peace, to love and serve the Lord
In the name of Christ, Amen.

Copyright Notices

Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Common Worship, material from which is included in this service, is copyright © The Archbishops’ Council.