St Clement Church Community Service for the second Sunday before Lent





               St Clement Church Community Sunday Service


Good morning to you all as we celebrate our service of the Second Sunday before Lent (yes, Easter will be early this year)  And I’m sure you’ll join with me in wishing May (aka my mum) a Happy 90th Birthday for yesterday!

We’re continuing to share worship in our own homes, the PCC and I will review the situation on the 12th.  I have informed Bishop Philip that if Covid levels are at an ‘acceptable’ level we’ll consider recommencing Sunday worship at St Clement the First Sunday of Lent (Feb 21st)

At The moment however, this is just a possibility, we’ll let you know next Sunday.

We bear in our thoughts and prayers this week the family of Captain Sir Tom, such a brave, inspirational man and the sadness that he succumbed to Covid seems so unfair.

Our church building isn’t used at the moment for worship, but I assure you my ministry continues in other places…. I had the honour and privilege of officiating at the marriage of Justine and Richard in their home at Carnon Downs last Saturday by Archbishop’s Special Licence.

Everything was arranged very quickly as Justine is terminally ill, but it was a wonderful afternoon and they would like you all to share their joy.

As you can see by the photographs at the bottom of this service, we even had cake and champagne!

May Christ’s love sustain you always.

Much love to you all,

Rev Di and family xx


Let us pray;

God of all mercy, throughout the trials and tribulations of our lives, open our eyes to see what is beautiful, our minds to know what is true, and our hearts to seek what is good, for the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.


Our prayers of Penitence

As brothers and sisters in God’s family, let us, in a moment of silence, recognise those failings in us that undermine relationships, and cause hurt to others:


When we bring hurt and betrayal upon those who love us…

Lord, have mercy.


When we are the cause of love to grow cold and attitudes to harden…

Christ, have mercy.


When we impede the way to forgiveness and reconciliation…

Lord, have mercy.


May Almighty God, have mercy upon us, forgive us our failings, and bring us to everlasting life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.


Let us pray our Collect for today

Almighty God, you have created the heavens and the earth and made us in your own image: teach us to discern your hand in all your works and your likeness in all your children; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Old Testament Reading: Proverbs 8. 1, 22-31

New Testament Reading: Colossians 1. 15-20

Gospel: John 1. 1-14

(Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John. 

Response: ‘Glory to you O Lord.’)


The Gospel According to


The Word Became Flesh

1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God,

and the Word was God.  2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being.  What has come into being 4in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. 5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

6There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him.

8He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light.

9The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.

10He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11He came to what was his own,

and his own people did not accept him.

12But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh, or of the will of man, but of God.

14And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a Father’s only son, full of grace and truth.    


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



During this current Covid crisis I’ve had to officiate at quite a few funerals, and to take a break from such grief and sadness I’ve occasionally taken timeout by watching re-runs on TV.  Especially of the classic comedies which never fail to raise a laugh because the comedians were just so good with words.

Groucho Marx is one of my favourites:
"I never forget a face," he said, "but in your case I'll be glad to make an exception."
"One morning I shot an elephant in my pyjamas. How he got into my pyjamas I'll never know."
"She got her good looks from her father. He's a plastic surgeon."
Some people have a way with words, but we're not all like that. Do you ever get lost for words?  I know I do. That may surprise you, but it’s true - especially as priests ought to have the right word to say in any given situation.

We can struggle when someone we know has just been bereaved, or made redundant, or had some other piece of bad news. 

When we hear of those circumstances, we know that we may search to say the right thing when we see the person involved. 

And we can ponder on our use of words in other circumstances too, for instance;

If I love you, how do you know that, unless I tell you?
And; If I love you, how do I know that, unless I tell you?

Complicated isn’t it?

It’s when we speak of what is inside us that it becomes true, our feelings, our thoughts, come alive, our words become flesh, as we - and those to whom we speak, discover who we are.

And so it is with God. Think back to the story of creation. It reminds us that God was unknown before the Word was spoken. God had to find a Word to speak out in order to be able to create a beginning.

God said, 'let there be light'. And then - and only then - was there light.
When I say; 'I love you', then love exists, where before there was only an ambiguous silence. And when God said 'Let there be light', there was light, where before there was only a brooding darkness.
God has always had to find the right Word to speak out, so as to continue to create new beginnings right throughout time.
'The Word was with God, and the Word was God', writes John. And throughout time, God has been searching to get this Word across, in a way that we could hear it, and receive it.

 And thankfully, God never gets weary of it, as light-heartedly writes the author Frederick Buechner:
‘Word after word he tries in search of the right word. When the Creation itself doesn't seem to say it right - sun, moon, stars, all of it - he tries flesh and blood.
He tried saying it in Noah, but Noah was a drinking man. He tried saying it in Abraham, but Abraham was a little too outlandish with all those wives and whiskers. He tried Moses, but Moses himself was trying too hard; he tried David, but David was too pretty for his own good.

Towards the end of his rope, God tried saying it in John the Baptist with his locusts and honey, and hellfire preaching, and you get the feeling that John might almost have worked, except that he lacked something small but crucial, like a sense of the ridiculous or a balanced diet.’
Just as our words have us in them - as they reveal our feelings of ‘I love you,’ so God’s word demonstrates the same.

'The Word became flesh', John said.
In the flesh of a man in history God finally manages to say who God is and what being fully human is all about.

In a life, and death, and the new life of resurrection, God's previously unspoken Word is revealed to us in Jesus, and we hear the words;

‘I love you.’

And this has immense implications for us.  For those of us who are struggling to find meaning in life, Jesus says; “I have come so that you may have life and have it to the full”

For those of us who are grieving over loved ones who have died, (and tomorrow is the anniversary of my father’s death), Jesus says; ‘Peace I leave with you, do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.’

For those of us who are looking for direction, Jesus says; ‘I am the Good shepherd.’

For those of us who are in despair during these dark days of Covid, Jesus says; ‘I am the light of the world.’

The fact that God knows our weaknesses, and is able to stand alongside us in them is so very important to all our lives. John wrote his gospel mindful of the community of which he was a part, and 2,000 years later Christians still find comfort and guidance in the words recorded.

As we come to worship this morning we join as community in sharing the miracle of the incarnation, the Word made flesh.

And we gather not because our faith is unshakable, or because we have everything sorted out in our lives, but rather as a community dependent upon God and one another.

We come in the flesh we have been created in, the same flesh which Jesus came in, we come as community in our weakness, looking for strength to carry on, and to support one another as we share and grow in God’s love.

In our worship today we draw ourselves near to the Word, to be sustained throughout the week and beyond by the knowledge that whatever we might face, we know that the Word is always with us. Amen.



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.





Our Intercessions this week are written by Helen Dunbar


In the power of the spirit and in union with Christ let us pray to the Father.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, you promised through your Son Jesus Christ to hear us when we pray in faith.

Loving God, we ask that you shine your light upon us into the recesses of our spirits, those places where we experience anxiety, depression, fear and despair. In these very difficult and confusing times, when we are trying to cope with feeling apprehensive and unsafe, please help us to keep our faith and learn from each other.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.


We pray for the Church throughout the world; give us courage to answer your call and keep us faithful to our life-giving word. Guide us to be the bringers of good news that your love is for all people. May the Church preach your word with power and confidence, and sensitivity to the needs of each individual; let all people look on the wonders of your creation and praise your power.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.


Loving God we pray for all clergy, for our own dear Revd Di, who continues to cope with a relentless amount of work and we also ask God’s blessing on her family.

Lord in your mercy; hear our prayer


Loving God, It has been very heartening in these difficult times during the pandemic to see kindness and love shine out in humanity by helping and looking after each other in so many different ways. Help us to continue the path of kindness and emulate your ways; to walk gently, cherishing all that you have made and seeing your glory all around us by loving each other, forgiving each other and caring for our environment and nature from destruction by our own hand. As we travel through the Covid darkness and suffering, may we be strengthened by knowing that you are with us Lord.

Lord in your mercy; hear our prayer




Dear Lord we ask your blessing on all who are suffering and for all the professionals and all in the NHS and staff in care homes working very hard with all the sick and not forgetting all who suffer from disabilities and mental illness; may they obtain healing and peace.

Lord we bring before you all known to us: for Sue, Kate, Hilary, Liz and Martin. We ask God’s blessing on Justine and Richard, whose marriage ceremony Revd Di presided over at their home on Saturday. Justine has terminal cancer and our prayers go to Justine and Richard to enjoy the precious time they have left together.

Lord in your mercy; hear our prayer


We thank God for the life of Captain Sir Tom Moore who sadly passed away on Tuesday with Covid, We thank God for a man who had such spirit and helped not only to raise many millions of pounds for the NHS, but inspired others to raise funds for good causes. We pray for his grieving family and friends.

Rejoicing in the fellowship of St Clement and St Andrew.

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

‘Where two or three are gathered together in my name’ says the Lord,

 ‘I am there among them’

May the peace of God be always with us.  Amen.



May God the Father, by whose glory Christ was raised from the dead, strengthen us to walk with him in his risen life; and may the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among us, those whom we love, and remain with us always. Amen.



Justine and Richard share with you their wonderful afternoon…



















Our 100 Club winners for last month:


1st Prize.  No 2 Marin Davies

2nd Prize  No 26 Liz Aumayer

3rd Prize. No 27 Jeanette Kendall


There are fewer members in our 100 Club now so the ‘prize’ money is less.  Unfortunately this also means less funds raised for St Clement Church.  Our MMF (The amount we are expected to pay to the diocese) is over £20,000 this year, so if you are able to contribute by joining the 100 Club, please contact Liz.


















Page last updated: 5th February 2021 2:09 PM