St Maxentius Worship at Home – Sunday – 14th April 2024 – Easter 3

This service can be used at home if you are unable to get to church. As you pray and reflect, we trust you will feel part of the wider church community.

PRAYER OF PREPARATION

As we rejoice in the gift of this new day,

so may the light of your presence,

O God, set our hearts on fire with love for you; 

now and forever. Amen.

CONFESSION

Almighty God our heavenly Father

we have sinned against you

and against our neighbour

in thought word and deed,

through negligence, through weakness, 

through our own deliberate fault.

We are truly sorry

and repent of all our sins.

For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ who died for us,

forgive us all that is past

and grant that we may serve you in newness of life

to the glory of your name. Amen.

GLORIA

Glory to God in the highest

and peace to his people on earth.

Lord God, heavenly king,

almighty God and Father,

we worship you,

we give you thanks,

we praise you for your glory.

Lord Jesus Christ only son of the Father 

Lord God Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world: 

have mercy upon us;

you are seated at the right hand of the Father: 

receive our prayer.

For you alone are the Holy One,

you alone are the Lord, you alone are the Most high,

Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit,

in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

COLLECT

Risen Christ,

you filled your disciples with boldness and fresh hope:

strengthen us to proclaim your risen life

and fill us with your peace,

to the glory of God the Father

Amen

Readings

Acts 3:12-19

When Peter saw it, he addressed the people, ‘You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you.

‘And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out

Luke 24:36b-48

Jesus Appears to His Disciples

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’ They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, ‘Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.’ And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, ‘Have you anything here to eat?’ They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence.

Then he said to them, ‘These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.’ Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, ‘Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

Three questions you might ask about the readings.

What strikes you from the readings?

What puzzles you from the readings?

What excites you from the readings?

Reflection:

Peter and John went to pray; they met a lame man on the way. He asked for alms and held out his palms, and this is what Peter did say: “Silver and gold have I none, but such as I have give I thee.

In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” He went walking and jumping and praising God, walking and jumping and praising God. “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” Acts chapter 3 starts with the story of the lame beggar being healed by Peter and John as the approach the Temple. The words I remember from Sunday School, it is one of the fascinating stories and quite rightly describes the Acts of the Apostles. It answers the question What happened next to the disciples? In Matthew 27 we have the Crucifixion of Jesus and we read that Jesus died at about 3pm. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the healing here in Acts shares this time of the afternoon. There is a significant connection here between Jesus’ sacrifice, sins forgiven, healing and restoration. The writers are getting us to think on this in our own lives. Sacrifice followed by forgiveness. In Acts 3 we read that this happened at a time of prayer. And so we have from verse 12 a startling sermon from Peter. Picture the scene as you read his words again. How did he get out of there alive? Peter addresses his fellow Israelites and offers words of condemnation. You rejected Jesus, he tells them, you chose a murderer, rejecting the Holy and Righteous path. Peter firmly lays the blame on his fellow Israelites.  But, he tells them that he and John are witnesses to God raising Jesus, your Messiah from the dead, and it is by this fact and faith that the man walks. Restored. But, but, Peter offers them a way out, a way they too can be restored. They acted in ignorance he tells them so that God’s word could be fulfilled. “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out”. It is a message that is repeated often in the New Testament so that all may be saved. As Paul writes Colossians 1 v 13 – 14 He has rescued us from the power of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. In the next chapter you can read that Peter and John were put in jail, for preaching the Gospel. But, “But many who heard the message believed; so the number of men who believed grew to about five thousand”

THE CREED

I believe in God the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ,

his only Son our Lord,

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,

and is seated at the right hand of the Father;

he will come again in glory

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. Amen.

INTERCESSIONS     

Please include your own prayers as well

In our prayers we pray for our church, our communities and our world

Lord God, we pray for our churches, our Turton Team, our Mission Community, our Diocese and the world-wide Church in every land.

Bless the leaders, guard the people, guide us in our future;

May we share the gospel in word and deed

and bring glory to your name;

Lord bless our churches we pray

Lord God we pray for our community

We pray for our schools, the children and staff.

We pray for all who work to make our communities a better place for others

We pray for Councillors and carers;

Lord bless our community we pray

Lord God we pray for our nation

May our leaders lead with integrity and justice

Give them wisdom and direct their decisions.

We pray that ours may be a nation 

where the poor and vulnerable are cared for and helped

and where all may flourish;

Lord bless our nation we pray

Lord God, we pray for our world,

for the war-torn places, we pray for peace.

We pray that all may work together to alleviate need 

and to protect this world for future generations;

Lord bless our world we pray

Lord God, we pray for those who are sick, in body, mind or spirit

We pray for those we know, and those who have no one to pray for them.

We pray for those who are dying and those who grieve;

We ask that you would give healing and peace to the soul

Lord bless the sick we pray

Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, 

our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

THE LORD’S PRAYER

Our Father in Heaven 

hallowed be your name;

your kingdom come, your will be done, 

on earth as in Heaven. 

Give us today our daily bread; 

Forgive us our sins 

as we forgive those who sin against us. 

Lead us not into temptation 

but deliver us from evil. 

For the kingdom, the power 

and the glory are yours 

now and forever. Amen.

Keep a moment of quiet as you allow God to speak to you, 

as you let your spirit rest in God’s Spirit.

THE BLESSING

May the Lord 

bless us and watch over us, 

make his face shine upon us 

and be gracious to us. 

May the Lord look kindly on us 

and give us peace, 

and may the blessing of God Almighty, 

our Creator, our Redeemer, 

the one who gives us Life 

be among us and with us all always. Amen

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