Printable services for those unable to attend St C

                                

                                        

        

                St Clement Church Community Sunday Service

 

Good morning to you all as we celebrate our Sunday service, whether in your own home or our church building. 

Next Sunday 19th September, we will be holding a Requiem Mass in church for Martin.  If you’re unable to attend I will be emailing a service of the Word.  As we strive to support Liz and prepare for Martin’s funeral on Friday may Christ’s love sustain you this week and always. 

With much love and prayers,

Rev Di and family xx

 

Let us pray;

Almighty God, send down upon your Church the riches of your Spirit, and kindle in all who minister the gospel your countless gifts of grace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

Our prayers of Penitence

In a moment of quiet reflection, we lay aside all pretence towards God and bring our fears and failings to our risen Christ:

 

Jesus, Emmanuel, God-with-us, forgive our unwelcoming hearts.. 

Lord, have mercy.

 

Jesus, Son of God, Servant of humanity, forgive our self-centred lives..

Christ, have mercy.

 

Jesus, Prince of Peace, Hope of the nations, forgive our bitter conflicts..

Lord, have mercy.

May Almighty God, who sent his Son into the world to save fallen humanity, bring us his pardon and peace, now and for ever. Amen.

 

Let us pray our Collect for the 15th Sunday after Trinity

God, who in generous mercy sent the Holy Spirit upon your Church in the burning fire of your love: grant that your people may be fervent in the fellowship of the gospel that, always abiding in you, they may be found steadfast in faith and active in service; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

                                                                                            

Hymn: When Morning Gilds the Sky’

 

Readings:

Isaiah 50. 4-9a

James 3. 1-12

 

Hymn; ‘Praise my Soul the King of Heaven’  

 

Gospel Mark 8. 27-38

(Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Mark.  Response: ‘Glory to you O Lord.’)

 

Jesus went on with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi; and on the way he asked his disciples, ‘Who do people say that I am?’ And they answered him, ‘John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.’ He asked them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ Peter answered him, ‘You are the Messiah.’ And he sternly ordered them not to tell anyone about him.

Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 

But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, ‘Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.’

He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, ‘If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 

For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. 

For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? Indeed, what can they give in return for their life? 

Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.’

 

 (This is the Gospel of the Lord.  Response: ‘Praise to you, O, Christ’)

 

Reflection

Today’s Gospel reading follows the momentous story of Jesus asking his disciples, “Who do you say that I am?”

And Peter turns to Jesus and says, “You are the Messiah”.

The moment of realisation and declaration about the nature of Jesus Christ whom they were following. We can imagine the quickening of hearts and the sheer intensity of the moment as the disciples confront Jesus with this truth that has dawned upon them. Jesus doesn’t deny it, but warns them instead not to tell anyone about him, and I expect they probably felt disappointed that they had to keep this secret.

So, he wanted them to keep quiet about his identity, but he then went on to talk about how the Son of Man would suffer, be rejected and killed. And somewhat perversely we read in verse 32: “He said all this quite openly”.

Keep quiet about the good news, speak openly about the bad news? Peter was indignant about this, he began to rebuke Jesus, and there was a heated exchange between them; full of rebuke and warning on both sides. But we can fully understand the human emotions involved here, Peter had spent many months with Jesus, watching him perform miracles and challenge the religious authorities. He’d watched the sheer strength of Jesus’ ministry, the authority of his word, and now he was being confronted with a future filled with weakness and vulnerability. And Peter didn’t want that. He didn’t want a weak, broken Messiah, he wanted a strong God.

Like others in Israel, he was expecting a mighty leader from the line of David to overthrow the Romans and restore Israel politically.

With hindsight, it is easy to see that error, but the reality is, we’re uncomfortable with a broken Messiah, we want a strong God too.

When we’re hurt in life, when we suffer loss, when we have to put up with thoughtless words from others, when we’re sick or dying, we want a strong God. We want a God who will heal us, or justify us, or turn our darkness into light.

But the problem is that we see strength from a human perspective, not from a divine one. We understand strength to be the same thing as might, to be the same thing as vindication in the eyes of others. We understand strength to be victory. But that’s a frail, human perspective.

In the eyes of God, strength looks very different.

For God, strength is measured in brokenness, in sacrifice, and by our willingness to endure all things in the name of God.

That was the example Jesus was about to show for his disciples, and that’s how he wants us to live our lives too.

“If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”

 We trivialise that call on our lives though, we manage to turn such a scandalous phrase into something so tame and parochial. “We’ve all got a cross to bear” isn’t that such an easy saying to trip off the tongue?

But it’s an incredible call on our lives from the man who was walking towards Jerusalem to be tortured and hung on a cross to die, our broken Messiah.

I wonder if Peter felt let down at this point: I suspect so…

Up until then, there was a certain glamour for Peter in following Jesus, he was hanging out with the coolest superhero in Israel, the crowds flocked to them, the miracles never stopped coming, the teaching was amazing, and no doubt Peter enjoyed bathing in the reflected glory of Jesus.

But now, that all changes, the glamour is gone and Peter is left with the cold, stark reality of the pain of discipleship and the agony of realising that if he truly wants to follow Jesus, he can’t have it all on his own terms. There’s a real cost to discipleship and it hurts.

It’s an uncomfortable truth, but it’s a truth governed by the knowledge that, as Jesus says; “Those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it.”

And that’s what this passage is about - Jesus was calling Peter into a place of self-reflection: to reflect deeply on whether he wanted Christ, or whether he wanted his own idea of Christ. 

Does he want to be a disciple of Israel’s superhero? Or does he want to be a disciple of the broken Messiah?

But we know how the story ends…The broken Messiah ascended to the heavens into the presence of his Father where he was glorified, because of his brokenness, for all eternity.

It goes without saying that the loss of Martin from our earthly lives has broken us.  But we will remain steadfast in that brokenness, we will pick up the pieces and carry them together as a corporate body, secure in the knowledge that the strength of our broken Messiah supports us every horrendous step of the way.

We will remain steadfast, we will take up our cross and continue to proclaim the good news of the gospel, comforted that we will overcome, and one day our names will be acknowledged before our Father and his holy angels, just as Martin’s is now. Amen.

 

Hymn; Be Still for the Presence of the Lord’ 

 

Affirmation of our faith

Let us declare our faith in God.

We believe and trust in God the Father, source of all being and life,

the one for whom we exist. 

We believe and trust in God the Son, who took our human nature,

died for us and rose again. 

We believe and trust in God the Holy Spirit, who gives life to the people of God and makes Christ known in the world. 

This is the faith of the Church. This is our faith.

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

Amen.

 

Our Intercessions this week are written by Helen Dunbar

Loving obedience to God is shown by Jesus to be a quality rich in courage and wisdom, a quality to be highly respected.

As sons and daughters of our heavenly Father, responding to his call, let us bring to him our needs and concerns.

 

Dear Lord, we pray for the whole family of your Church here in St Clement. May all your people be built up in faith and demonstrate in their lives the gospel of Jesus Christ. Give strength and courage to those who find it hard to follow you. Give us encouragement when we have difficulty in taking your teachings on board.

We pray for all clergy, for Archbishop Justin, Bishops Phillip and Hugh and also our own hard working, much loved Revd Diane, bless them and guide them as they go about their work.

Lord hear us; Lord graciously hear us

 

Dear Lord and Father, your Son became a refugee and had no place to call his own; look with mercy on those who are today fleeing from danger, homeless and hungry.  Bless those who work to bring them relief and inspire generosity and compassion in all our hearts.  Guide the nations of the world towards that day when everyone will rejoice in your kingdom of justice and peace. We pray for all who are wrongly imprisoned or held captive, for those trying to secure their release; that the ways of peace and diplomacy may prevail over acts of violence and aggression; that the captors may know a change of heart through Jesus who was sent to free those who are oppressed. 

Lord hear us; Lord graciously hear us

 

We pray for our Prime Minister and all members of the government. Please God help them and guide them in the very difficult and complex decisions they have to make. We ask your blessings on all leaders of nations that they will have the wisdom and courage to act in the interests of all their people for the common good; that all people of every race, colour and creed may come to know justice and freedom and live in security and peace.

Lord hear us, Lord graciously hear us.

 

We pray for children and young people embarking on the next stage of their life’s journey.  For staff in schools and colleges; Lord, be the light that guides teachers and students towards their goals in education, in citizenship. Grant them enthusiasm and joy as they work towards a fulfilled and satisfying future in these very different times.

Lord hear us, Lord graciously hear us.

 

Bless and guide Elizabeth our Queen. Bless all the royal family and be their light and guide in all that they are called to be and do in life. Enfold them in your love now and always.

Lord hear us, Lord graciously hear us.

 

We pray for the sick, please God surround them with your love, and give wisdom and understanding to all who support and guide them.  We pray to all those known to us, for Barrie and Sandra, Brian, Ollie, Ken and Diane (Ken has had the wonderful news that he is clear of cancer, but must continue his treatment for the time being and we give thanks for this news) Margaret, Linda and Rupert, Ted and Felicity.

Lord hear us, Lord graciously hear us.

Merciful God, we pray for those whose hearts have been saddened by the death of someone dear to them, for members of our families who have died and whose anniversary we recall. Help us to experience the comfort of the Holy Spirit within us and the fellowship of the church family around us until we are reunited once more in your heavenly kingdom. 

 

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

 

Gathering our prayers and praises into one, let us pray with confidence as Jesus 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.

 

Hymn; ‘O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing

 

The Peace

We are the body of Christ.  In the one Spirit we were all baptised into one body.  Let us then pursue all that makes for peace and build up our common life.  May the peace of God be always with us.  Amen.

 

Blessing

May God the Holy Trinity make us strong in faith and love, defend us on every side and guide us in truth and peace.  And may the presence of God watch over us, the power of God protect us, those whom we love, and may we never forget that wherever we are, God is with us always.

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Page last updated: 10th September 2021 8:02 AM