ST. MAXENTIUS WORSHIP AT HOME – Sunday15th May – Easter 5


A very good morning to you all and I hope this finds you well. Today’s readings are in Acts when Peter reports back to the church in Jerusalem and the Gospel is from John, which reminds us of the greatest commandment.

At St. Maxentius today we have our APCM, when we vote in all our church officials and hear all the reports, a very important day for us and we look forward to working with new volunteers who have offered their services. This will take place after the service and we hope to see as many as possible joining us.

On the 21st of May we have our first coffee morning when we will be raffling off our hamper and then on the 18th June we are having our afternoon tea, hosted by Chris Sutcliffe, tickets are £10 each and available from Chris. Another great excuse to get together and to make some money for the church.

The refection today is by Rev Peter and intercessions by Mike Haslam. Many thanks.

Jan B.


Lord, direct our thoughts and teach us to pray. Lift up our hearts to worship you in spirit and truth, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


 God shows his love for us in that, while we were sinners, Christ died for us. Let us then show our love for him by confessing our sins in penitence and faith.

Lord God, we have sinned against you; we have done evil in your sight. We are sorry and repent. Have mercy on us according to your love. Wash away our wrongdoing and cleanse us from our sin. Renew a right spirit within us and restore us to the joy of your salvation, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


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 sin of the world: have mercy on 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.


Almighty God, who through your only-begotten Son Jesus Christ have overcome death and opened to us the gate of everlasting life: grant that, as by your grace going before us you put into our minds good desires, so by your continual help we may bring them to good effect; through Jesus Christ our risen Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.


ACTS 11. 1-18

Now the apostles and the believers who were in Judea heard that the Gentiles had also accepted the word of God. So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticized him, saying, ‘Why did you go to uncircumcised men and eat with them?’ Then Peter began to explain it to them, step by step, saying, ‘I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision. There was something like a large sheet coming down from heaven, being lowered by its four corners; and it came close to me. As I looked at it closely I saw four-footed animals, beasts of prey, reptiles, and birds of the air. I also heard a voice saying to me, “Get up, Peter; kill and eat.” But I replied, “By no means, Lord; for nothing profane or unclean has ever entered my mouth.” But a second time the voice answered from heaven, “What God has made clean, you must not call profane.” This happened three times; then everything was pulled up again to heaven. At that very moment three men, sent to me from Caesarea, arrived at the house where we were. The Spirit told me to go with them and not to make a distinction between them and us. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house. He told us how he had seen the angel standing in his house and saying, “Send to Joppa and bring Simon, who is called Peter; he will give you a message by which you and your entire household will be saved.” And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them just as it had upon us at the beginning. And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said, “John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” If then God gave them the same gift that he gave us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could hinder God?’ When they heard this, they were silenced. And they praised God, saying, ‘Then God has given even to the Gentiles the repentance that leads to life.’

This is the word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.


Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John. Glory to you O Lord.

JOHN 13, 31-35

When he had gone out, Jesus said, ‘Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, “Where I am going, you cannot come.” I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.’

This is the Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you O Christ.


The gospel passage is a short extract from the much longer teaching of Jesus which accompanies the washing of feet, and the discussion about the one who would hand him over.
In John’s gospel there are lots of theological layers; one of them is about glory and glorification, and for John, the glorification of Jesus happens on the Cross, where Jesus is lifted up. The moment of execution, the thing that will cause his death is, extraordinarily, the moment of glorification. What the powers that be see as destruction becomes the destruction of the destroyer (as Revelation puts it in ch 11).
The moment of glorification does not lead to his followers being grand and exalted, nor to them getting status – Jesus says the fruit of this is that the followers will live in love- love here meaning practical love and care and support, not just thinking nice thoughts. In a society where love and care and generosity was mostly kept within the in-group, Jesus asks us to model a much more outward form of love and care which wraps in the lonely and the outcast and those whose religion or lifestyle is not like ours, those who may not be very lovely.
So there is a then-moment – the crucifixion, in which in the torment and viciousness God is – and this is beyond our explanation – glorified. Pause for a moment – God, Almighty God, the Creator, in Jesus, washes the feet of the disciples with all their failings and weaknesses, allows himself to be the object of hatred and mockery, endures torture and a vile slow form of execution – God is glorified in this – the true deep sense of who God is, is found in this moment and it changes everyone who comes into contact, it means that eternal life, new life, assurance is there for us in the midst of this world, even when the worst is happening, it cannot separate us from the love of God as St Paul will say and he experienced a lot of aggro, illness and hardship.
And the now-moment is how we life in light of this truth – how we show love to one another, how we see each and any human being as someone special to God, loved by God, equal to me or you. And the future-moment is the promise of sharing in the everlasting glory of God, which is described in Revelation as “making all things new”, a place “where there is no suffering, pain, tears or death”. This is a grand and epic re-ordering of the world, and some of us want it now, but partly because we do not want the effort and difficulties of the present, but Jesus says for now, we love one another, we make a difference for good for others, and rather than seeking the sort of glory that the world goes after, we reflect on the Cross, on the service of Jesus to his disciples.
Has how I have lived in the last week been loving and affirming and upbuilding of others? Have I loved generously and freely, not just the lovely and the ones close to me, but others? Is the glorification of Jesus on and through the Cross something that means so much to me that it shapes my life? When I survey the wondrous cross ..

Rev Peter


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 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 on 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.


During the intercessions, we pray for the church, our country, our government, people in difficulty and those who have died. You can use your own prayers or if you prefer here are some on today’s theme.

Holy God, we come before you with thanksgiving for all your mercy and grace and we give thanks for the beauty and wonder of the world around us as we bring to your our prayers of intercession and thanksgiving.

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Almighty God, we pray today for your blessing to be upon our congregation, upon our churches in the Turton Moorland Ministry. May your presence be seen vividly in all that we do and say each day. We pray that your joy and your love will flow freely in and through us.

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Creator God, St. John gave us a vision of a new heaven and a new earth.  We pray for those parts of the world which badly need renewal.  Inspire and instruct our world leaders to constantly work for that day when all the world’s peoples may enjoy security, peace and a decent standard of living.

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Faithful God,  your son Jesus said “I give you a new commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” In our worship today, we testify to God’s love shown perfectly in Christ and we re-commit ourselves to love one another as a community of faith.

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Gracious God, in your great mercy comfort and relieve those who are sick, injured, aged or distressed and according to their needs, enable them to draw strength from you and know that you are with them in all their troubles.

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Loving God, we pray for those, saddened by the death of a loved one, for members of our families who have died and whose anniversary we recall. Help us to draw comfort from the Holy Spirit and the fellowship of our church family. We remember now before God those who have died or whose anniversaries of passing fall at his time

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

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


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 for ever. Amen.


May Christ who out of defeat brings new hope and a new future, fill us with his new life and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit be with us now and forever more. Amen.

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