Services whilst we are closed due to Corona virus

                                

                                        

        

 

               St Clement Church Community Sunday Service 21.6.20

 

Good morning to you all as we celebrate our Sunday service.

Happy Father’s Day! not only to the Dads out there, but also to all who offer paternal love and advice.  We remember too, Fathers no longer in our earthly lives, but who are never forgotten for their love, care and guidance.  We also bring before God all who have never known such paternal love.

 

As you know, at the moment our St Clement church building remains closed, but I have good news…..it’s been determined that ‘supervised prayer’ doesn’t mean the church need to be ‘manned’ whilst it is open, and signage can now be ordered from the Church Support Hub at minimal cost.

Though it is still advised that hand sanitiser be available and kneelers and hymn books removed.

Another email from me will be winging its way to the PCC for their views, but I consider this could be ‘do able’ now……

The covid restrictions are lifting but we still need to remain cautious, especially as the county is beginning to open to visitors, so, be careful as you go out and about and keep yourselves safe.

My family and I have had a roller coaster ride of a week to say the least, a photo explaining all is at the bottom of this service, (no, don’t scroll straight down now!)

Much love and prayers and may Christ’s love sustain you not only during these difficult times, but always. 

Rev Di and family xx

Let us pray;

O Lord, open our eyes to see what is beautiful, open our minds to know what is true, and our hearts to seek what is good, for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

Our prayers of Penitence

Let us examine our lives in the light of St Paul’s teaching about the nature of love:

‘Love is patient, love is kind, is not envious, or boastful, or arrogant or rude.  Does not insist on its own way, is not irritable, or resentful and does not rejoice in wrongdoing…..’

 

We confess to God that our attitudes and behaviour often fall short of these standards:

Most merciful God, we confess that we have not loved you with our whole heart, nor have we loved our neighbours as ourselves.

We ask that in you forgive what we have been, help us to amend what we are, and direct what we shall be; that we may do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with you, our God.  Amen.

 

Let us pray our Collect for the 2nd Sunday after Trinity

Faithful Creator, whose love and mercy never fails: deepen our faithfulness to you and to your living Word, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.  

                                                                                           

Our Reading today is taken from the Gospel of Matthew (10.24-32)

Jesus said; ‘A disciple is not above the teacher, nor a slave above the master; it is enough for the disciple to be like the teacher, and the slave like the master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household!

‘So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known. What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim from the housetops. Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground unperceived by your Father. And even the hairs of your head are all counted. So do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows.

‘Everyone therefore who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven.

Reflection   

I’m sure that all of us at some point in our working lives have had days where we’ve suffered in that role, especially those of us who’ve worked in the public domain.

This statement brings me to a story I’ve told before from a funny letter in the Church Times:

A clergy colleague wrote that he’d been waiting to check in at the departure desk at Gatwick airport, and felt all manner of sympathies for the poor airline employee who was being given a hard time by a passenger. 

The young lady was so patient with the gentleman in question and faced all manner of difficulties and insults without batting an eyelid. 

The Priest was highly impressed, and when it was his turn at the desk he complimented her on the way she handled such a difficult situation.  ‘Thank you Father’ was the reply, ‘But in all honesty, I must tell you, that passenger is going to Amsterdam, his luggage is now on its way to Ankara……..’

Seriously though, we are all too aware that there’s all manner of suffering in our personal lives, we only need to look at the suffering Covid 19 has brought to us and the wider world.

In our Gospel reading today Jesus is warning his disciples— and us—that we follow a Lord who was rejected, tortured and crucified, and that we will also face times of suffering as we follow Christ, and then we’re reminded that God is with us and we need not be afraid.

Jesus uses an image of the little sparrows that were sold in the markets of the Middle East of his time. The tiny birds were sold for their meat and were also very inexpensive, two birds were only a half-penny.

They were considered insignificant things then, but God watched over them. And if God cares about the birds which fall from the air, the tiny little birds sold for a morsel of meat in the market, how much more God cares for us. Though of course, my theology disputes we are of more value than sparrows!  (Don’t start me off on that one……..)

There’s another image which is lovely—the number of hairs on our head. We don’t know how many hairs we have but God does. The text says “And even the hairs of your head are all counted.” God knows us better than we know ourselves.

Jesus said to his followers who faced persecution, “Fear not!”

And he says to us with our own worries and cares, “So do not be afraid. I care about you. I will acknowledge you, my followers, to my Father in heaven.”

We have the promise of eternal life through Christ.  Our bodies can be harmed, accident and illness may befall us, but our final destination of eternal life is certain.

And as followers of Jesus though we are called to be with those who are suffering, even though we may be suffering ourselves.  We’re called to comfort the sick, to console those who are grieving, to understand people’s troubles, and to care about others as God cares for us.

There’s no escape from suffering in this life, the important thing in the midst of life’s pains is to remember that God isn’t rejecting us, abandoning us, nor is it his fault.  In it all God is with us.

So do not be afraid, people of God, Disciples of Christ, even the hairs on our head are counted, through it all, whatever we may face, God will take care of us. Amen.

 

I should add a PS. here – when the day comes when we’re able to travel abroad again, it would be best when we check in at the airport, to be very nice to the person at the desk before our luggage disappears……

 

 

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 Liz Davies      

Let us pray;

Dear Lord, we come before you in the quietness of our homes to give thanks for our fathers and our families. For most of us, we have happy memories of family life when we were children and the times spent with our fathers.  

We think of those who never knew their fathers, for whatever reason, and who have spent their lives imagining what they would have been like.                                                  

We also bring before You those who do not have happy memories of family life, for whom ‘father’ is a word synonymous with pain and suffering.   

We ask Your blessing and guidance on all fathers and father figures that they may care and guide all children in the way that you would have them do.   Family life is very precious. We ask Your blessing on all families that they may live their lives in love, tolerance and joy.

 

Lord, we have much to give thanks for to Your Father, the great creator, and for the wonder and beauty of the natural world in which we live. May we always appreciate the countryside and coastlines around us and act as true stewards so that generations that come after us may also enjoy and appreciate the wonder of His creation.  

                                                                                                                         There is so much intolerance, violence and hatred in the world; people who use violence in the name of religion; people who believe that there is justification for using violence to gain power and wealth; people who believe that violence is the only way to achieve what they want, and those who just use it to cause upset, unrest and retaliation.                                                                                              We ask Your blessing and guidance on all those who can show that it is peace, tolerance, respect, encouragement and love that will finally make the world a better place and not fear, anger and violence. 

 

As the weeks progress in this Covid pandemic, we pray for all those who have been ill with the virus and we ask Your blessing and comfort on all those who have lost loved ones - so many of whom were unable to say a proper ‘goodbye.’                                                                                                                                          We bring before You all those suffering in body, mind or spirit. May they feel Your blessing giving them the strength to cope with the difficulties that they face. Please enfold them in Your love.  

 

Dear Lord – may we remember that the Holy Spirit is with us always but for us to be Your true Church WE must be the hands through which You can work; WE must be the voices through which You can speak; WE must be the feet through which You can travel and WE must be the agents You can send and the instruments You can use.                                                                                                                      He has no hands but our hands to do His work today.                                                                       He has no feet but our feet to lead men in His way.                                                                          He has no voice but our voice to tell men how He died.                                                                       He has no help but our help to lead men to His side.

Gracious Lord, hear our prayers and guide us along the pathway of life.  Amen

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

 

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

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, to the end of the age.

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The reason for our roller coaster week;

The arrival of a new granddaughter, born on Tuesday after an emergency caesarean.  We truly give thanks to God for the skill of the surgeon and the team who saved the lives of my daughter Susan and her baby Willow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Page last updated: 19th June 2020 3:00 PM