Church of England Diocese of Birmingham St. Paul Blackheath

A short service for the 2nd Sunday before Lent – 07/02/2021

Grace, mercy and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

Amen.

Opening prayer

O God, we come to you out of the week just gone –
with its successes and disappointments,
its joys and its struggles.
By your Holy Spirit,
help us to focus on you now,
to listen as you speak to our hearts,
so that we may be better prepared
to serve you in the week to come.
Amen.

Psalm 104: 26-end

There the ships go to and from,
and Leviathan, which you formed to frolic there.

All creatures look to you
to give them their food at the proper time.

When you give it to them,
they gather it up;
when you open your hand,
they are satisfied with good things.

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

When you send your Spirit,
they are created,
and you renew the face of the ground.

May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
may the Lord rejoice in his works—

he who looks at the earth, and it trembles,
who touches the mountains, and they smoke.

I will sing to the Lord all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.

May my meditation be pleasing to him,
as I rejoice in the Lord.

But may sinners vanish from the earth
and the wicked be no more.

Praise the Lord, my soul.

Praise the Lord.

Amen.

Our Bible reading is John 1: 1-14 Colossians 1: 15-20 Proverbs 8: 1, 22-31

The Word Became Flesh

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

For Thought for the day by Revd Arif Anees. Please click the link below or visit our Facebook page;

https://youtu.be/hplUtRcwGTk

Collect

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 your Son our Lord,

who with you and the Holy Spirit reigns supreme over all things,

now and for ever.

Amen.

Prayers of intercession

God of love,
you give power to the faint and strength to the powerless.
Many of us are exhausted,
juggling with school at the kitchen table,
responding to demands of work or family life
or dealing with isolation, joblessness and fear.
We pray for the leaders of our church…
Encourage and strengthen them in their work,
give us all fresh vision for the future of church
and renew our Imagination, creativity and wisdom
as we address financial and ministerial challenges.
Turn us towards each other in acts of loving service.
then turn us outwards to carry your gospel of healing into the world.

Lord, in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.

God of love,
you call worlds into being; you number the stars and call us all by name.
You created a world of plenty and beauty, of magnificence and diversity.
As backlash builds over the UK’s permission for a new coal mine in Cumbria,
we pray for faithful climate leadership here and across the world.
We ask for bold and brave decision-making that recognises the crisis we are in –
decision making that challenges our dependence on fossil fuel.
that works to restore decades of damage from greed and exploitation.
God of all creation, you restore the face of the earth:
stir us up to action to protect our planet.
May our feet tread lightly on the earth
and our actions and priorities bring healing to our battered world.

Lord, in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.

God of love,
you restore what is broken and you bring together what has been split apart.
Today we pray for Myanmar in the aftermath of a military coup
where there is now a year-long state of emergency.
We ask for peace in a dangerous and fragile situation,
where streets are once again full of fear.
Although the past is marred by compromised leadership,
we pray for a negotiated political settlement for the country
and for the free and fair votes of the people to be recognised.
Although our leaders may often fail us,
may we trust again that there is a world of possibility
where the mistakes of the past can shape a better future.

Lord, in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.

God of love,
you defend the voiceless.
We pray for the UK where society is marred by vast inequalities
of life chances, opportunities and money,
and where COVID-19 has revealed the vast wealth owned by some
and the struggles of others just to make ends meet.
Today we pray for people living in flats covered in unsafe cladding
who are afraid to sleep at night.
We ask for a just settlement of this crisis
and commitment from government to ensure this is never repeated.
Help us to be alert to the pain of others.
May we hear the cries of the powerless
and by our words, choices and actions
may we be agents of healing in the world.

Lord, in your mercy…

Hear our prayer.

God of love,
we pray for the renewal of our cities
so that in them people can live, work, play and find space to breathe.
We ask that priorities would work for people rather than speculative investment;
for the common good rather than corporations.
We pray for the social cohesion of our neighbourhoods
and are aware of lost networks of support and care.
We pray for charities struggling because of the pandemic, especially…
and as we look to the future,
may we work to build connection rather than separation
and restore the fabric of community.

Lord, in your mercy…
Hear our prayer. 

In a moment of silence, we will bring before God people, places and situations that we carry in our hearts…

(Silence is kept for few moments)

Lord, in your mercy…
Hear our prayer.

Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of your Son our Lord Jesus Christ who reigns with you in the unity of Holy Spirit,

Amen.

Sending prayer

Lord Jesus,
go with us into the world this week.
Help us to remain focused upon you
and to make your priorities our priorities in
all the places you are sending us.

Amen.

Final blessing

The Lord bless us, and preserve from all evil,

and keep us in eternal life.

Amen.

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Common Worship – Copyright © The Archbishops’ Council 2000

Common Worship – Times and Seasons – Copyright © The Archbishops’ Council 2006

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