This Weeks Services ,Readings and Prayers

July 26th, 2020 -7th Sunday after Trinity

 Prayer for this time

Heavenly Father, our ever present help in trouble,
our fortress and our God: calm the anxious fears of all who turn to you; give strength and healing to those who are sick, and courage and skill to those who care for them; grant wisdom and clarity to those in authority; and humble us all to call upon you, that we may be saved not only in this life, but also for that which is to come. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

A Simple Order of Morning Prayer in Ordinary Time

O Lord open our lips,
And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

We sing to you, O Lord, and bless your name,
And tell of your salvation from day to day.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now,
and shall be for ever. Amen.

Worship the Lord.
All praise to his name.

Silent prayer/reflection on the coming day. :

Eternal God,
we praise and thank you for the day
on which you created light
and saw that it was good;
the day on which the disciples
discovered the empty tomb
and met the risen Christ.
This is the day that you have made;
we rejoice and are glad in it.
Blessed be God for ever.

Jubilate Deo (Psalm 100)

The Lord is gracious, his steadfast love is everlasting.

O be joyful in the Lord, all the earth:
serve the Lord with gladness
and come before his presence with a song. Know that the Lord is God: it is he that has made us and we are his; we are his people and the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise: give thanks to him and bless his name. For the Lord is gracious; his steadfast love is everlasting: and his faithfulness endures from generation to generation.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now,
and shall be for ever. Amen.

The Lord is gracious, his steadfast love is everlasting.

Bible Reading

FIRST READING 1 Kings 3: 5–12

At Gibeon, the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, ‘Ask what I should give you.’ And Solomon said, ‘You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant my father David, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart towards you;  and you have kept for him this great and steadfast love, and have given him a son to sit on his throne today. And now, O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David, although I am only a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in. And your servant is in the midst of the people whom you have chosen, a great people, so numerous they cannot be numbered or counted. Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, able to discern between good and evil; for who can govern this your great people? ’It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. God said to him, ‘Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches, or for the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, I now do according to your word. Indeed, I give you a wise and discerning mind; no one like you has been before you and no one like you shall arise after you.’

PSALM 119: 129–136           

R Lord, how I love your law.

Your decrees are wonderful; therefore, I obey them with all my heart. When your word goes forth it gives light; it gives understanding to the simple. R

I open my mouth and pant; I long for your commandments. Turn to me in mercy, as you always do to those who love your name. R

Steady my footsteps in your word; let no iniquity have dominion over me. Rescue me from those who oppress me, and I will keep your commandments. R

Let your countenance shine upon your servant and teach me your statutes. My eyes shed streams of tears because people do not keep your law. R

SECOND READING Romans 8: 26–39

The Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn within a large family. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed  intercedes for us. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord

The Gospel of Christ according to Matthew 13: 31-33, 44-52

Glory to you, O Lord.

He put before them another parable: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in his field; it is the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the greatest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.’ He told them another parable: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.’ ‘The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. ‘Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it. ‘Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea and caught fish of every kind; when it was full, they drew it ashore, sat down, and put the good into baskets but threw out the bad. So, it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.  ‘Have you understood all this?’ They answered, ‘Yes.’ And he said to them, ‘Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like the master of a household who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.’

Praise to you, O Christ.

Reflection – The Pearl of Great Price.

‘Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it’. Matthew 13 verse 45.

Here we find Jesus telling us another of his parables. This one is about a merchant who goes searching for a precious pearl of great value. When he eventually finds it, he is so keen to possess it that he’s prepared to sell everything that he owns so that he might possess that single pearl. Pearls are considered to be very precious things and would have been as familiar and valuable in the time of Jesus as they are today and were considered to be one of the most precious objects you could own. Jesus uses the ‘pearl’ in a number of his parables to illustrate something that is ‘precious’; he warns of the perils of casting our pearls before swine and likens the kingdom of heaven being like a precious pearl, something we have to be prepared to sacrifice everything for if we want to possess it. In the book of revelation, we find the twelve gates of the ‘new Jerusalem’ being made of twelve enormous pearls. It is only through these ‘pearly’ gates that we can enter into heaven and so we are reminded in a familiar hymn (we’ll be singing it this Sunday)  ‘through gates of pearl stream in the countless hosts, singing to Father, Son and Holy Ghost, Alleluia’.

Pearls are formed as a result of damage to shellfish; the damage allows a small parasite a grain of sand to get into the oyster, which emits a powerful secretion to solidify into a foreign body and which will eventually create a precious pearl! So, pearls are a product of damage and suffering; oysters that are undamaged, that live ordinary lives do not produce pearls and apparently the deeper the damage the bigger the pearl grows. Have you ever stopped to think about how a pearl is produced at a cost. Think again of those ‘pearly’ gates’ that represent eternal life with God; eternal life that comes through the sacrificial death of Jesus; the kingdom is open to all but it does come at a price and requires sacrifice.  The merchant discovers a pearl of great price and is prepared to sell/ sacrifice everything else to obtain it. And so Jesus reminds us the kingdom of God is the most precious, most valuable thing we can obtain  but he also reminds us that gift came at considerable cost to himself and will also requires a sacrifice from us – the offering of ourselves in response to his great and sacrificial love. What are we prepared to pay, to sacrifice in order to obtain God’s Kingdom? The cost will be different for each of us but will require our energies, abilities our resources; above all it requires the offering of ourselves.

The Benedictus


In your tender compassion, O God,
the dawn from on high shall break upon us.

Blessed be the Lord the God of Israel for he has come to his people and set them free. The Lord has raised up for us a mighty Saviour born of the house of his servant David.           Through his holy prophets God promised of old to save us from our enemies from the hands of all who hate us.                            To show mercy to our forebears and to remember his holy covenant.                      This was the oath God swore to our father Abraham to set us free from the hands of our enemies, Free to worship him without fear holy and righteous before him all the days of our life.                And you, child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,                                                             To give his people knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of their sins. In the tender compassion of our God the dawn from on high shall break upon us, To shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now,
and shall be for ever. Amen.

In your tender compassion, O God,
the dawn from on high shall break upon us.

Prayers


Lord, who may dwell in your sacred tent? Who may live on your holy mountain? You teach us it is those who have clean hands, and pure hearts; those who do what is righteous, who speak the truth from their heart. We pray, O Heavenly Father, that your Holy Spirit inspires us to always follow your precepts. (Short Silence) Lord, in your mercy; hear our prayer

Holy God, we pray for your church especially in our Diocese and our Benefice. We pray for all in our Ministry Team, and for our Rector elect, Daniel. We pray too for our wardens and officials, and all those who serve on church councils. Thank you too for those who provide music, hospitality and flowers; those who maintain our buildings and grounds; and for those who greet, serve, read and intercede. (Pause)Lord, help us to grow your church in this town. (Short Silence) Lord, in your mercy; hear our prayer   

Creator God, we thank you for the example of leadership given to us by your Son, Jesus Christ. We pray for an end to greed, corruption, hostility and hate. We pray, Lord God, for a renewal of a spirit of humility and good governance; care for the sick, the poor, the homeless, the hungry and the frightened. (Pause) Lord, we pray that our political classes act responsibly and honestly, and through an understanding of your teachings on wisdom. (Pause) Give us peace in our time, O Lord: and evermore mightily defend us.  (Short Silence) Lord, in your mercy; hear our prayer

Father God, we worship you as the one who has given us life, and we ask that you will help us to live it to the full. At home or abroad, may we be the friends and neighbours that you want us to be. Help us, Lord, to spread the warmth of your grace, mercy and love to everyone we meet.  (Short Silence) Lord, in your mercy; hear our prayer

Mighty God, we thank you for your love and compassion for all who suffer in body, mind and spirit. We pray that your healing presence will calm their fears, ease their pain, and bring light into their darkness. (Pause) Lord God, as we pray for all who are sick and suffering: we pray especially for those we know who need your comfort right now [remembering especially (add names of those we know)]. (Short Silence) Lord, in your mercy; hear our prayer

Merciful God, through the ministry of your Son Jesus Christ you have freed us from the grip of the tomb. We remember before you all whom we have loved yet see no more. (Pause) We pray too for those who have recently departed this life. (Pause) [This morning we remember especially our beloved sister in Christ, Hilda, thanking you that we benefited from her gift of music.] [We pray too for (add names of those others who’ve recently passed from this life). We ask you, through your loving-kindness, to have mercy on her/their soul(s).)]  (Pause) We pray too for all those bereaved by the passing of a loved one, [remembering especially at this time Hilda’s husband, Ellis, and their daughter, Jayne.] [We pray too for (add names of those others who’re bereaved by the passing from this life of a loved one)] (Short Silence) Lord, in your mercy; hear our prayer

Gracious God, hear these prayers we offer you in the name of your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.  By the power of your Holy Spirit at work within us, may we bring your kingdom to this world, and may your will be done so that all people may live for your praise and glory. Merciful Father: Accept these prayers for the sake of your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen

The Lord’s Prayer is said.

The Collect for Trinity 7

 Lord of all power and might, the author and giver of all good things: graft in our hearts the love of your name, increase in us true religion, nourish us with all goodness, and of your great mercy keep us in the same; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen

The second collect, for peace.


O God, the author of peace and lover of concord,
to know you is eternal life,
to serve you is perfect freedom:
defend us in all assaults of our enemies,
that we, surely trusting in your protection,
may not fear the power of any adversaries;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The third collect, for grace.


Eternal God and Father,
by your power we are created
and by your love we are redeemed:
guide and strengthen us by your Spirit,
that we may give ourselves to you
in love and service of one another;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit
be with us all, evermore. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord. Thanks be to God.