13th Jun – 3rd Sunday After Pentecost

Sermon: God’s present and coming kingdom

Readings
1 SAMUEL 15:34-16:13; PSALM 20; 2 CORINTHIANS 5:6-10 (11-13), 14-17; MARK 4:26-34

Collect
Almighty God,
without you we are not able to please you.
Mercifully grant that your Holy Spirit
may in all things direct and rule our hearts;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE FIRST BOOK OF SAMUEL
Then Samuel went to Ramah; and Saul went up to his house in Gibeah of Saul. Samuel did not see Saul again until the day of his death, but Samuel grieved over Saul. And the Lord was sorry that he had made Saul king over Israel. The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve over Saul? I have rejected him from being king over Israel. Fill your horn with oil and set out; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have provided for myself a king among his sons.” Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears of it, he will kill me.” And the Lord said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what you shall do; and you shall anoint for me the one whom I name to you.” Samuel did what the Lord commanded, and came to Bethlehem. The elders of the city came to meet him trembling, and said, “Do you come peaceably?” He said, “Peaceably; I have come to sacrifice to the Lord; sanctify yourselves and come with me to the sacrifice.” And he sanctified Jesse and his sons and invited them to the sacrifice. When they came, he looked on Eliab and thought, “Surely the Lord’s anointed is now before the Lord.” But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for the Lord does not see as mortals see; they look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” Then Jesse called Abinadab, and made him pass before Samuel. He said, “Neither has the Lord chosen this one.” Then Jesse made Shammah pass by. And he said, “Neither has the Lord chosen this one.” Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel, and Samuel said to Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen any of these.” Samuel said to Jesse, “Are all your sons here?” And he said, “There remains yet the youngest, but he is keeping the sheep.” And Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and bring him; for we will not sit down until he comes here.” He sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and had beautiful eyes, and was handsome. The Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; for this is the one.” Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward. Samuel then set out and went to Ramah.
1 SAMUEL 15:34-16:13

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN The Lord gives victory to his anointed.

May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble, the Name of the God of Jacob defend you;

Send you help from his holy place and strengthen you out of Zion; R

Remember all your offerings and accept your burnt sacrifice;

Grant you your heart’s desire and prosper all your plans. R

We will shout for joy at your victory and triumph in the name of our God; may the Lord grant all your requests. R

Now I know that the Lord gives victory to his anointed; he will answer him out of his holy heaven, with the victorious strength of his right hand.

Some put their trust in chariots and some in horses, but we will call upon the name of the Lord our God. R

They collapse and fall down, but we will arise and stand upright.

O Lord, give victory to the king and answer us when we call.
PSALM 20

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE SECOND LETTER OF PAUL TO THE CORINTHIANS
We are always confident; even though we know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord – for we walk by faith, not by sight. Yes, we do have confidence, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For all of us must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each may receive recompense for what has been done in the body, whether good or evil.

[Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we try to persuade others; but we ourselves are well known to God, and I hope that we are also well known to your consciences. We are not commending ourselves to you again, but giving you an opportunity to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast in outward appearance and not in the heart. For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you.]

For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died. And he died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died and was raised for them. From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way. So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!
2 CORINTHIANS 5:6-10 (11-13), 14-17

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO MARK
Jesus said, “The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how. The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. But when the grain is ripe, at once he goes in with his sickle, because the harvest has come.” He also said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.” With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.
MARK 4:26-34

Prayer over the Gifts
God of reconciliation and forgiveness,
the saving work of Christ has made our peace with you.
May that work grow toward its perfection
in all we offer you this day.
We ask this in his name.

Prayer After Communion
Holy and blessed God,
as you give us the body and blood of your Son,
guide us with your Holy Spirit,
that we may honour you not only with our lips
but also in our lives.
This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Jun 6th – 2nd Sunday after Pentecost

Sermon: The Truth Which Dispels Conspiracy

Readings
1 SAMUEL 8:4-11 (12-15), 16-20 (11:14-15); PSALM 138; 2 CORINTHIANS 4:13-5:1; MARK 3:20-35

Collect
O God,
you have assured the human family of eternal life
through Jesus Christ our Saviour.
Deliver us from the death of sin
and raise us to new life in him,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE FIRST BOOK OF SAMUEL
Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah, and said to him, “You are old and your sons do not follow in your ways; appoint for us, then, a king to govern us, like other nations.” But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to govern us.” Samuel prayed to the Lord, and the Lord said to Samuel, “Listen to the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. Just as they have done to me, from the day I brought them up out of Egypt to this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so also they are doing to you. Now then, listen to their voice; only you shall solemnly warn them, and show them the ways of the king who shall reign over them.” So Samuel reported all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking him for a king. He said, “These will be the ways of the king who will reign over you: he will take your sons and appoint them to his chariots and to be his horsemen, and to run before his chariots.
[and he will appoint for himself commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and some to plow his ground and to reap his harvest, and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots. He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive orchards and give them to his courtiers. He will take one-tenth of your grain and of your vineyards and give it to his officers and his courtiers.]
He will take your male and female slaves, and the best of your cattle and donkeys, and put them to his work. He will take one-tenth of your flocks, and you shall be his slaves. And in that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves; but the Lord will not answer you in that day.” But the people refused to listen to the voice of Samuel; they said, “No! but we are determined to have a king over us, so that we also may be like other nations, and that our king may govern us and go out before us and fight our battles.”
[Samuel said to the people, “Come, let us go to Gilgal and there renew the kingship.” So all the people went to Gilgal, and there they made Saul king before the Lord in Gilgal. There they sacrificed offerings of well-being before the Lord, and there Saul and all the Israelites rejoiced greatly.]
1 SAMUEL 8:4-11 (12-15), 16-20 (11:14-15)

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN The Lord will make good his purpose for me.

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, with my whole heart; before the gods I will sing your praise.

I will bow down toward your holy temple and praise your name, because of your love and faithfulness; R

For you have glorified your name and your word above all things.

When I called, you answered me; you increased my strength within me. R

All the kings of the earth will praise you, O Lord, when they have heard the words of your mouth.

They will sing of the ways of the Lord, that great is the glory of the Lord. R

Though the Lord be high, he cares for the lowly; he perceives the haughty from afar.

Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you keep me safe; you stretch forth your hand against the fury of my enemies; your right hand shall save me.

The Lord will make good his purpose for me; O Lord, your love endures for ever; do not abandon the works of your hands. R
PSALM 138

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE SECOND LETTER OF PAUL TO THE CORINTHIANS
But just as we have the same spirit of faith that is in accordance with scripture—“I believed, and so I spoke”—we also believe, and so we speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus, and will bring us with you into his presence. Yes, everything is for your sake, so that grace, as it extends to more and more people, may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God. So we do not lose heart. Even though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. For this slight momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all measure, because we look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen; for what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal. For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.
2 CORINTHIANS 4:13-5:1

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO MARK
The crowd came together again, so that they could not even eat. When his family heard it, they went out to restrain Jesus, for people were saying, “He has gone out of his mind.” And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem said, “He has Beelzebul, and by the ruler of the demons he casts out demons.” And he called them to him, and spoke to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but his end has come. But no one can enter a strong man’s house and plunder his property without first tying up the strong man; then indeed the house can be plundered. Truly I tell you, people will be forgiven for their sins and whatever blasphemies they utter; but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit can never have forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin” – for they had said, “He has an unclean spirit.” Then his mother and his brothers came; and standing outside, they sent to him and called him. A crowd was sitting around him; and they said to him, “Your mother and your brothers and sisters are outside, asking for you.” And he replied, “Who are my mother and my brothers?” And looking at those who sat around him, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.”
MARK 3:20-35

Prayer over the Gifts
Merciful God and Father,
in Adam’s fall we were born to death;
in the new Adam we are reborn to life.
In all we offer you this day
may we share a taste of your eternal kingdom.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord.

Prayer After Communion
O God,
we have shared in the mysteries
of the body and blood of Christ.
Nourish us by this feast,
that we may live the risen life
and serve you faithfully in the world.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord.

May 30th – Trinity Sunday

Sermon: Invitation to Divine Love and Life

Readings
ISAIAH 6:1-8; PSALM 29; ROMANS 8:12-17; JOHN 3:1-17

Collect
Father, we praise you:
through your Word and Holy Spirit you created all things.
You reveal your salvation in all the world
by sending to us Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh.
Through your Holy Spirit
you give us a share in your life and love.
Fill us with the vision of your glory,
that we may always serve and praise you,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ISAIAH
In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple. Seraphs were in attendance above him; each had six wings: with two they covered their faces, and with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. And one called to another and said: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory.” The pivots on the thresholds shook at the voices of those who called, and the house filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!” Then one of the seraphs flew to me, holding a live coal that had been taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. The seraph touched my mouth with it and said: “Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed and your sin is blotted out.” Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I; send me!”
ISAIAH 6:1-8

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN Ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.

Ascribe to the Lord, you gods, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.

Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness. R

The voice of the Lord is upon the waters; the God of glory thunders; the Lord is upon the mighty waters.

The voice of the Lord is a powerful voice; the voice of the Lord is a voice of splendour. R

The voice of the Lord breaks the cedar trees; the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon;

He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, and Mount Hermon like a young wild ox. R

The voice of the Lord splits the flames of fire; the voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness; the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.

The voice of the Lord makes the oak trees writhe and strips the forests bare.

And in the temple of the Lord all are crying, “Glory!” R

The Lord sits enthroned above the flood; the Lord sits enthroned as king for evermore.

The Lord shall give strength to his people; the Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace. R
PSALM 29

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE LETTER OF PAUL TO THE ROMANS
So then, brothers and sisters, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh – for if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, “Abba! Father!” it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ – if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.
ROMANS 8:12-17

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO JOHN
Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.” Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be astonished that I said to you, ‘You must be born from above.’ The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”
JOHN 3:1-17

Prayer over the Gifts
Living God,
receive all we offer you this day.
Grant that hearing your word and responding to your Spirit,
we may share in your divine life.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord.

Prayer After Communion
Almighty and eternal God,
may we who have received this eucharist
worship you in all we do,
and proclaim the glory of your majesty.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord.

May 23rd – Pentecost Sunday

Sermon: Proclaiming God In Our Own Language

Readings
ACTS 2:1-21; PSALM 104:25-35, 37B;
ROMANS 8:22-27; JOHN 15:26-27, 16:4B-15

Collect
Almighty and everliving God,
who fulfilled the promises of Easter
by sending us your Holy Spirit
and opening to every race and nation
the way of life eternal,
keep us in the unity of your Spirit,
that every tongue may tell of your glory;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS
When the day of Pentecost had come, the apostles 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.'”
ACTS 2:1-21

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN Send forth your Spirit, O Lord, and renew the face of the earth.

O Lord, how manifold are your works! in wisdom you have made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.

Yonder is the great and wide sea with its living things too many to number, creatures both small and great. R

There move the ships, and there is that Leviathan, which you have made for the sport of it.

All of them look to you to give them their food in due season.

You give it to them; they gather it; you open your hand, and they are filled with good things. R

You hide your face, and they are terrified; you take away their breath, and they die and return to their dust.

You send forth your Spirit, and they are created; and so you renew the face of the earth. R

May the glory of the Lord endure for ever; may the Lord rejoice in all his works. He looks at the earth and it trembles; he touches the mountains and they smoke. R

I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will praise my God while I have my being.

May these words of mine please him; I will rejoice in the Lord.

Hallelujah! R
PSALM 104:25-35, 37B

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE LETTER OF PAUL TO THE ROMANS
We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labour pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies. For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
ROMANS 8:22-27

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO JOHN
Jesus said to the disciples, “When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who comes from the Father, he will testify on my behalf. You also are to testify because you have been with me from the beginning. I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going to him who sent me; yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts. Nevertheless I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgement: about sin, because they do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will see me no longer; about judgement, because the ruler of this world has been condemned. I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own, but will speak whatever he hears, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, because he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine. For this reason I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.”
JOHN 15:26-27, 16:4B15

Prayer over the Gifts
Giver of life,
receive all we offer you this day.
Let the Spirit you bestow on your Church
continue to work in the world
through the hearts of all who believe.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord.

Prayer After Communion
Father,
may we who have received this eucharist
live in the unity of your Holy Spirit,
that we may show forth his gifts to all the world.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

May 16th – Ascension of the Lord

Sermon: The King of Creation

Readings
ACTS 1:1-11; PSALM 47 OR PSALM 93; EPHESIANS 1:15-23; LUKE 24:44-53

Collect
Almighty God,
your Son Jesus Christ ascended to the throne of heaven
that he might rule over all things as Lord.
Keep the Church in the unity of the Spirit
and in the bond of his peace,
and bring the whole of creation
to worship at his feet,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS
In the first book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus did and taught from the beginning until the day when he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. After his suffering he presented himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. While staying with them, he ordered them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for the promise of the Father. “This,” he said, “is what you have heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?” He replied, “It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
ACTS 1:1-11

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN God has gone up with a shout.

Clap your hands, all you peoples; shout to God with a cry of joy.

For the Lord Most High is to be feared; he is the great king over all the earth. R

He subdues the peoples under us, and the nations under our feet.

He chooses our inheritance for us, the pride of Jacob whom he loves. R

God has gone up with a shout, the Lord with the sound of the ram’s-horn.

Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises to our king, sing praises. R

For God is king of all the earth; sing praises with all your skill.

God reigns over the nations; God sits upon his holy throne. R

The nobles of the peoples have gathered together with the people of the God of Abraham.

The rulers of the earth belong to God, and he is highly exalted. R
PSALM 47

Or

PSALM
The Lord is king; he has put on splendid apparel; the Lord has put on his apparel and girded himself with strength.

He has made the whole world so sure that it cannot be moved;

Ever since the world began, your throne has been established; you are from everlasting.

The waters have lifted up, O Lord, the waters have lifted up their voice; the waters have lifted up their pounding waves.

Mightier than the sound of many waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea, mightier is the Lord who dwells on high.

Your testimonies are very sure, and holiness adorns your house, O Lord, for ever and for evermore.
PSALM 93

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE LETTER OF PAUL TO THE EPHESIANS
I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power. God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
EPHESIANS 1:15-23

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
ACCORDING TO LUKE
Jesus 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. And see, I am sending upon you what my Father promised; so stay here in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.” Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and, lifting up his hands, he blessed them. While he was blessing them, he withdrew from them and was carried up into heaven. And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy; and they were continually in the temple blessing God.
LUKE 24:44-53

Prayer over the Gifts
Eternal God,
our Saviour Jesus Christ
has promised to be with us until the end of time.
Accept all we offer you this day,
and renew us in his transfigured life;
for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Prayer After Communion
Eternal Giver of love and power,
your Son Jesus Christ has sent us into all the world
to preach the gospel of his kingdom.
Confirm us in this mission,
and help us to live the good news we proclaim;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

May 9th – 6th Sunday of Easter

Sermon: The Love That Changes Everything

Readings
ACTS 10:44-48; PSALM 98; 1 JOHN 5:1-6; JOHN 15:9-17

Collect
Merciful God,
you have prepared for those who love you
riches beyond imagination.
Pour into our hearts such love toward you,
that we, loving you above all things,
may obtain your promises,
which exceed all that we can desire;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS
While Peter was still speaking, the Holy Spirit fell upon all who heard the word. The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astounded that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles, for they heard them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter said, “Can anyone withhold the water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” So he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they invited him to stay for several days.
ACTS 10:44-48

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN The Lord has made known his salvation.

Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvellous things.

With his right hand and his holy arm has he won for himself the victory. R

The Lord has made known his victory; his righteousness has he openly shown in the sight of the nations.

He remembers his mercy and faithfulness to the house of Israel, and all the ends of the earth have seen the victory of our God. R

Shout with joy to the Lord, all you lands; lift up your voice, rejoice, and sing.

Sing to the Lord with the harp, with the harp and the voice of song. R

With trumpets and the sound of the horn shout with joy before the King, the Lord.

Let the sea make a noise and all that is in it, the lands and those who dwell therein. R

Let the rivers clap their hands, and let the hills ring out with joy before the Lord, when he comes to judge the earth.

In righteousness shall he judge the world and the peoples with equity. R
PSALM 98

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE FIRST LETTER OF JOHN
Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the parent loves the child. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. For the love of God is this, that we obey his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome, for whatever is born of God conquers the world. And this is the victory that conquers the world, our faith. Who is it that conquers the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? This is the one who came by water and blood, Jesus Christ, not with the water only but with the water and the blood. And the Spirit is the one that testifies, for the Spirit is the truth.
1 JOHN 5:1-6

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO JOHN
Jesus said, “As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete. This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father. You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another.”
JOHN 15:9-17

Prayer over the Gifts
God of glory,
accept all we offer you this day,
and bring us to that eternal city of love and light,
where Christ is King.
We ask this in his name.

Prayer After Communion
Father,
you restored us to life
by raising your Son from death.
May we who receive this sacrament
always be strengthened to do your will,
in the name of Jesus Christ the risen Lord.

May 2nd – 5th Sunday of Easter

Sermon: Abiding Through Pandemic

Readings
ACTS 8:26-40; PSALM 22:24-30; 1 JOHN 4:7-21; JOHN 15:1-8

Collect
Almighty God,
your Son Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life.
Give us grace to love one another
and walk in the way of his commandments,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS
Then an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Get up and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” (This is a wilderness road.) So he got up and went. Now there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of the Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, in charge of her entire treasury. He had come to Jerusalem to worship and was returning home; seated in his chariot, he was reading the prophet Isaiah. Then the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over to this chariot and join it.” So Philip ran up to it and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah. He asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” He replied, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to get in and sit beside him. Now the passage of the scripture that he was reading was this: “Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter, and like a lamb silent before its shearer, so he does not open his mouth. In his humiliation justice was denied him. Who can describe his generation? For his life is taken away from the earth.” The eunuch asked Philip, “About whom, may I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?” Then Philip began to speak, and starting with this scripture, he proclaimed to him the good news about Jesus. As they were going along the road, they came to some water; and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water! What is to prevent me from being baptized?” He commanded the chariot to stop, and both of them, Philip and the eunuch, went down into the water, and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he was passing through the region, he proclaimed the good news to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.
ACTS 8:26-40

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN All the ends of the earth shall turn to the Lord.

My praise is of him in the great assembly; I will perform my vows in the presence of those who worship him.

The poor shall eat and be satisfied, and those who seek the Lord shall praise him: “May your heart live for ever!”

All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord, and all the families of the nations shall bow before him. R

For kingship belongs to the Lord; he rules over the nations.

To him alone all who sleep in the earth bow down in worship; all who go down to the dust fall before him. R

My soul shall live for him; my descendants shall serve him; they shall be known as the Lord’s for ever.

They shall come and make known to a people yet unborn the saving deeds that he has done. R
PSALM 22:24-30

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE FIRST LETTER OF JOHN
Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. Beloved, since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the Father has sent his Son as the Saviour of the world. God abides in those who confess that Jesus is the Son of God, and they abide in God. So we have known and believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness on the day of judgement, because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because he first loved us. Those who say, “I love God,” and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.
1 JOHN 4:7-21

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO JOHN
Jesus said, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinegrower. He removes every branch in me that bears no fruit. Every branch that bears fruit he prunes to make it bear more fruit. You have already been cleansed by the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. Whoever does not abide in me is thrown away like a branch and withers; such branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.
JOHN 15:1-8

Prayer over the Gifts
Gracious God,
you show us your way
and give us your divine life.
May everything we do
be directed by the knowledge of your truth.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the risen Lord.

Prayer After Communion
God of love,
in this eucharist we have heard your truth
and shared in your life.
May we always walk in your way,
in the name of Jesus Christ the Lord.

Apr 25th – 4th Sunday of Easter

Sermon: Loving like the Good Shepherd

Readings
ACTS 4:5-12; PSALM 23; 1 JOHN 3:16-24; JOHN 10:11-18

Collect
O God of peace,
who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ,
that great shepherd of the sheep,
by the blood of the eternal covenant,
make us perfect in every good work to do your will,
and work in us that which is well-pleasing in your sight;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS
The 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.”
ACTS 4:5-12

Psalm
PSALM
Refrain The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not be in want.

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not be in want.

He makes me lie down in green pastures and leads me beside still waters. R

He revives my soul and guides me along right pathways for his name’s sake.

Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil; for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. R

You spread a table before me in the presence of those who trouble me; you have anointed my head with oil, and my cup is running over.

Surely your goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. R
PSALM 23

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE FIRST LETTER OF JOHN
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.
1 JOHN 3:16-24

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO JOHN
Jesus said, “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.”
JOHN 10:11-18

Prayer over the Gifts
God of loving care,
you spread before us the table of life,
and give us the cup of salvation to drink.
Keep us always in the fold of your Son Jesus Christ,
our Saviour and our shepherd.

Prayer After Communion
God of steadfast love,
watch over the Church redeemed by the blood of your Son.
May we who share in these holy mysteries
come safely to your eternal kingdom,
where there is one flock and one shepherd.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the risen Lord.

April 18th – 3rd Sunday Of Easter

Sermon: Forgive Us As We Forgive

Readings
ACTS 3:12-19; PSALM 4; 1 JOHN 3:1-7; LUKE 24:36B-48

Collect
O God,
your Son made himself known to his disciples
in the breaking of bread.
Open the eyes of our faith,
that we may see him in his redeeming work,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS
Peter 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 this man 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.”
ACTS 3:12-19

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN The Lord does wonders for the faithful.

Answer me when I call, O God, defender of my cause; you set me free when I am hard-pressed; have mercy on me and hear my prayer.

“You mortals, how long will you dishonour my glory; how long will you worship dumb idols and run after false gods?” R

Know that the Lord does wonders for the faithful; when I call upon the Lord, he will hear me.

Tremble, then, and do not sin; speak to your heart in silence upon your bed. R

Offer the appointed sacrifices and put your trust in the Lord.

Many are saying, “Oh, that we might see better times!” Lift up the light of your countenance upon us, O Lord. R

You have put gladness in my heart, more than when grain and wine and oil increase.

I lie down in peace; at once I fall asleep; for only you, Lord, make me dwell in safety. R
PSALM 4

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE FIRST LETTER OF JOHN
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 sins 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.
1 JOHN 3:1-7

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST
ACCORDING TO LUKE
Jesus himself stood among the disciples 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.”
LUKE 24:36B-48

Prayer over the Gifts
Creator of all,
you wash away our sins in water,
you give us new birth by the Spirit,
and redeem us in the blood of Christ.
As we celebrate the resurrection,
renew your gift of life within us.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the risen Lord.

Prayer After Communion
Author of life divine,
in the breaking of bread we know the risen Lord.
Feed us always in these mysteries,
that we may show your glory to all the world.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

April 11th – 2nd Sunday of Easter

sermon: Willing To Believe

ACTS 4:32-35; PSALM 133; 1 JOHN 1:1-2:2; JOHN 20:19-31

Collect
Almighty and eternal God,
the strength of those who believe
and the hope of those who doubt,
may we, who have not seen, have faith
and receive the fullness of Christ’s blessing,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

First Reading
A READING FROM THE BOOK OF ACTS
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.
ACTS 4:32-35

Psalm
PSALM
REFRAIN How good it for all is to live together in unity.

Oh, how good and pleasant it is, when brethren live together in unity!

It is like fine oil upon the head that runs down upon the beard,

Upon the beard of Aaron, and runs down upon the collar of his robe. R

It is like the dew of Hermon that falls upon the hills of Zion.

For there the Lord has ordained the blessing: life for evermore. R
PSALM 133

Second Reading
A READING FROM THE FIRST LETTER OF JOHN
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.
1 JOHN 1:1-2:2

Gospel
THE HOLY GOSPEL OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO JOHN
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.
JOHN 20:19-31

Prayer over the Gifts
God of grace,
you have freed us from our sins
and made us a kingdom in your Son
Jesus Christ our Lord.
Accept all we offer you this day,
and strengthen us in the new life you have given us,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Prayer After Communion
Father,
we have seen with our eyes
and touched with our hands
the bread of life.
Strengthen our faith
that we may grow in love for you and for each other;
through Jesus Christ the risen Lord.