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              St Clement Church Patronal Festival and Christ the King Service


Good morning on this the Sunday when we celebrate Christ the King and also our Patronal Festival and Gift Day – a really special day.                                                                   I can’t quite believe that today is the last Sunday in this Church year.                                           Looking back over this last year is bitter sweet – so much has happened … so much to give thanks for, but also such deep sorrows.                                                                        Next Sunday we will be in Advent, the beginning of a New Year in the Church’s life.                                                                                                                                                                I pray that all of us will be given the strength to bear our sorrows, but also the joy and faith to step forward into the future, knowing that Christ is our King.

With love                                                                                                                                                              Liz

Let us pray

Jesus, You are the King of Glory, You are the Lord of Lords and King of Kings.                                      We pray that Your Kingdom will reign for ever in our hearts and in the world.                                Lord, we pray for Your Kingdom to come here now, bringing a Kingdom of justice, righteousness, hope, love, peace, mercy and grace for all.                                                 Lord, we ask that You rule in our hearts, lead in this world and govern over Your Kingdom.                                                                                                                                            Lord, thank You for being a different kind of King.                                                                              Thank You for Your goodness and kindness in our lives.                                                                   Thank You for Your generosity.                                                                                                                   Thank You for loving us.                                                                                                                                Thank You for Your Kingdom that is unlike any kingdom in this world.


Hymn: 345 Christ is the King, O friends rejoice

A prayer of Penitence

You, God, are our one and only King.                                                                                                          We beg Your forgiveness for the other ‘kings’ that we kneel before:                                               money…                                                                                                                                                         power…                                                                                                                                                                  gossip…                                                                                                                                                          self-righteousness…                                                                                                                                       We beg Your forgiveness, we who are broken and torn apart by our own doings and un-doings.                  

Guide us to be Your servants.                                                                                                                      Lead us to trust You as the only King we need.                                                                                           as we strive to follow Your Son,                                                                                                                through the power of Your Holy Spirit.


Let us pray the Collect for Christ the King

Eternal Father, whose Son Jesus Christ ascended to the throne of heaven that he might rule over all things as Lord and King: keep the Church in the unity of the Spirit and in the bond of peace, and bring the whole created order to worship at his feet; who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.



Daniel 7. 9 – 10, 13 – 14                                                                                                                                  Revelation 1. 4b – 8

Hymn: 204 Christ is made the sure foundation

Gospel of John 18. 33 – 37

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

Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, ‘Are you the King of the Jews?’                                                                                                                 Jesus answered, ‘Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?’                                                                                                                                                                  Pilate replies, ‘I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?’                                                                                      Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.’                                                                              Pilate asked him, ‘So you are a king?’                                                                                                      Jesus answered, ‘You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.’

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


I wonder, have you read The Lord of the Rings trilogy or maybe you have seen the films?                                                                                                                                                          Aragorn is an interesting fellow, or Strider as he is known when we first meet him. If you don’t know the stories, he is introduced as a shady character, a lone – wanderer with a non-too-glorious past. Who is he? Can we trust him? What is the secret he is hiding? Two thousand pages later, he turns out to be the rightful king of men.                                                                                                                                   No one would have believed that at the start – he neither looked like a king, nor acted like one. But appearances can be deceptive, as we see in today’s reading. Jesus and Strider have a lot in common.                                                                                  At the time Strider was wandering around Middle Earth in a grubby cloak, he was the king. It didn’t matter if people knew that or not. It didn’t matter if they acknowledged his authority or not. They could reject him, insult him, try to kill him. Yet he was still the king. Sound like anyone else?                                                                        A lot of people were confused about Jesus. They’d heard about his being a king, supposedly, but he didn’t dress like a king, he didn’t talk like a king, he certainly didn’t act like a king. So, perhaps he wasn’t a king, not really.                                                                      If not a king, then what? Maybe we can dismiss him as a good teacher, then we can pick and choose the good bits he says and agree with them, and then ignore the harder stuff. If he’s not aa king, we don’t have to obey when we don’t fancy it. We can keep our own little kingdoms. That would make things easier.                                                                                                                                                              When Strider was found to be the rightful heir to the throne of men, not everyone was pleased. The appointed stewards, who had been keeping the throne warm for the last few generations, were none too pleased at the thought of losing control of their kingdom – even though they were only looking after it for the long-awaited king.                                                                                                 It was the same with Jesus. When he turned up and started fulfilling prophecies of another long-awaited king, there were plenty of ‘stewards’ who had become quite used to their borrowed thrones and were not keen to move aside.                                                                                                                                                                       Pilate – he had a throne to defend, but he needn’t have worried. Jesus wasn’t after earthly power, although everyone from Satan in the desert, to his disciples, thought he should be.                                                                                                                The religious folk – they certainly had a kingdom to protect. They had been maintaining the faith of the children of Abraham for centuries and they were not about to let some jumped-up messiah carpenter from the ill-educated north start rocking the boat.                                                                                                                        We find it easy to shake our heads at them from the safety of 2000 years, but would we so easily see the truth had Jesus been ruffling feathers here today? These people we criticise for their blindness are the church elders, the well-respected theologians, the conference speakers, the ministers, the house-group leaders of the day. Let us make sure we are not building our kingdoms when we seek to build his.                                                                                                                         But what about the smaller kingdoms? We are all stewards of our own little domains. How easy do we find it to hand over the reins of power to the rightful king when he asks for them back? The rich young man in Mark 10 wanted to keep a firm grip on the reins of his riches, and money can so often be the place where it is hardest for us to let go.                                                                                                             The uncomfortable truth is that Jesus is King, whether we like it or not. If we welcome him with rejoicing or if we fight to keep the power, we think is ours, he is King.                                                                                                                                                    If we gladly bow in worship or if we turn our backs and ignore the commands we don’t like, He is KING. If we freely offer all our gifts and possessions back to the one who gave them, or if we snarl and growl as we guard them, as a dog does its food bowl – He is King.

Jesus,                                                                                                                                                               King of all past empires,                                                                                                                                 Lord of all present rulers,                                                                                                                             Master of all that is to come,                                                                                                                                             Lord of all kingdoms great and tiny,                                                                                                            Teach us to hold lightly on to the reins of supposed power,                                      remembering that all aspects of our life and loves, our work and worship and our time, are reassuringly under your rule,                                                                                              and that in all things,                                                                                                                                  You are King.


Christ the King    by Malcolm Guite 

Our King is calling from the hungry furrows                                                                                               While we are cruising through the aisles of plenty,                                                                                Our hoardings screen us from the man of sorrows,                                                                               Our soundtracks drown his murmur: ‘I am thirsty.’                                                                                         He stands in line to sign in as a stranger                                                                                                         And seek a welcome from the world he made,                                                                                       We seek him only as a threat, a danger,                                                                                                            He asks for clothes, we strip-search him instead.                                                                                       And if he should fall sick then we take care                                                                                                       That he does not infect our private health,                                                                                                 We lock him in the prisons of our fear                                                                                                       Lest he unlock the prison of our wealth.                                                                                                 But still on Sunday we shall stand and sing                                                                                                The praises of our hidden Lord and King.

Affirmation of our Faith

Let us declare our faith in God

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,                                                                                                     creator of heaven and earth.                                                                                                                  who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,                                                                                                       born of the Virgin Mary,                                                                                                                           suffered under Pontius Pilate,                                                                                                                     was crucified, died, and was buried;                                                                                                       He descended to the dead.                                                                                                                       On the third day he rose again;                                                                                                                      he ascended into heaven,                                                                                                                           he is seated at the right hand of the Father,                                                                                                  he will come to judge the living and the dead.                                                                                         I believe in the Holy Spirit,                                                                                                                             the holy catholic Church,                                                                                                                             the communion of saints,                                                                                                                              the forgiveness of sins,                                                                                                                               the resurrection of the body,                                                                                                                                        and the life everlasting.


Hymn:  234 Christ whose glory fills the skies

Intercessions by Helen Dunbar

Jesus Christ is the everlasting King whose kingdom is not of this world, but grows in the hearts of his people and lasts forever.


As children of the kingdom, let us make our prayers to the eternal God, who loves us.


We pray for all those in positions of power and trust; that they may govern with wisdom and integrity, serving the needs of all their people. We pray for the Church, the sign of your reign, that it may extend your welcome to people of every race and background. We pray for Christians of every denomination, that together we may come to understand the royal priesthood you bestowed on us in your baptism.


Lord hear us; Lord graciously hear us


We pray for the Church throughout the world, that the church may have a voice for those who lack even the basic necessities of life, tirelessly serving them and calling for change. We pray for the world’s leaders that they may not hide behind their power or abuse it, but work for the good of all humanity, particularly the poor throughout the world.


Loving God, may we actively seek to do good, to stand up against injustice and work for peace; Lord, rid the world of the terrible evils that result from unvoiced objections, and unspoken misgivings. Give us the courage to act as true citizens of heaven.


Lord hear us; Lord graciously hear us


We pray for our Church here at St Clement and we ask God’s blessing on Revd Di, Ken and all their family.


We pray for our local community, that we may show our love through our respect for each other and for our environment, gladly sharing what we have with those in need. We also remember all who do not attend St Clement Church, but receive the service at home and are with us in spirit.


Lord hear us; Lord graciously hear us


Bless and guide Elizabeth our Queen, who at the end of this week resumed some of her duties after a period of rest. 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, we thank you for all those who spend their lives trying to make ours better – for those in public service, for all people who commit themselves to charitable works, and for all those who help others to find you.


Lord hear us; Lord graciously hear us;


We pray for all those who are ill, whether in hospital or at home, others who are struggling with a life of despair or depression and for all those who care for them.

Comfort those who suffer in mind, body or spirit.  We pray for those known to us, for Ollie, Maria, Ken and Diane, and Margaret.


We pray for all the departed and for those whose anniversary falls at this time, we pray for Nicky who passed away a year ago this week and we ask God’s blessing on her family; who are still struggling to come to terms with their loss.


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.


The Peace

May the God of hope fill us with all joy and peace as we trust in him, so that we may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.                                                            

The peace of Christ the King be with you.


Hymn: 391 King of glory, king of peace


God the Father,                                                                                                                                            who has given to his Son the name above every name,                                                                                                                          strengthen us to proclaim Christ as Lord;                                                                                               and the blessing of God Almighty,                                                                                                           the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit                                                                                             be among us and remain with us always.




Page last updated: 19th November 2021 3:53 PM