St Maxentius Worship at Home – Trinity 16 – 24th September 2023


Good morning everyone, I hope you are all well. I am having to make a change to our worship at home as I am now doing ordinand training and my time is now very limited. There will still be a service for you, but it will be the same for a few weeks and each week I will send the readings, prayers and reflection for you to add in. Hope that it is manageable for you and that it is not too difficult.

Jan B.


Almighty God your Son has opened for us a new and living way into your presence. Give us new hearts and constant wills to worship you in spirit and in truth, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


The Holy Spirit fills the world and knows our every word and deed. Let us then open ourselves to the Lord and confess our sins in penitence and faith.

Most merciful God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we confess that we have sinned in thought, word and deed. We have not loved you with our whole heart. We have not loved our neighbours as ourselves. In your mercy forgive what we have been help us to amend what we are, and direct what we shall be; that we may do justly; love mercy and walk humbly with you, our God. Amen.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who in his great mercy has promised forgiveness of sins to all those who with heartfelt repentance and true faith turn to him; have mercy on us and deliver us from our sins, confirm and strengthen us in all goodness and bring us to everlasting life, 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.


O Lord, we beseech you mercifully to hear the prayers of your people who call upon you;

and grant that they may both perceive and know what things they ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to fulfil them; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.


Philippians 1.21–30

A reading from the letter of Paul to the Philippians. For to me, living is Christ and dying is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labour for me; and I do not know which I prefer. I am hard pressed between the two: my desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better; but to remain in the flesh is more necessary for you. Since I am convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with all of you for your progress and joy in faith, so that I may share abundantly in your boasting in Christ Jesus when I come to you again. Only, live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that, whether I come and see you or am absent and hear about you, I will know that you are standing firm in one spirit, striving side by side with one mind for the faith of the gospel, and are in no way intimidated by your opponents. For them this is evidence of their destruction, but of your salvation. And this is God’s doing. For he has graciously granted you the privilege not only of believing in Christ, but of suffering for him as well – since you are having the same struggle that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.

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


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

MATTHEW 20. 1-16

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire labourers for his vineyard. After agreeing with the labourers for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard. When he went out about nine o’clock, he saw others standing idle in the market-place; and he said to them, “You also go into the vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.” So they went. When he went out again about noon and about three o’clock, he did the same. And about five o’clock he went out and found others standing around; and he said to them, “Why are you standing here idle all day?” They said to him, “Because no one has hired us.” He said to them, “You also go into the vineyard.” When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, “Call the labourers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and then going to the first.” When those hired about five o’clock came, each of them received the usual daily wage. Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received the usual daily wage. And when they received it, they grumbled against the landowner, saying, “These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.” But he replied to one of them, “Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?” So the last will be first, and the first will be last.’

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


Jesus is trying to explain to his disciples how different life on earth is to the kingdom of heaven, he is comparing it to a land owner in this parable, once again in a way they will understand. People wanting work would wait in the market place and hope that employers would come along. The keenest would be there early in the morning in the hope of having the best chance of getting work and payment for that day. Others would arrive later in the day, for differing reasons but normally would only be paid for the hours they worked.

The first agreed an acceptable wage and worked all day and were rewarded with that money, but the land owner decided to give all his workers the same pay, regardless of their hours. Of course those who had toiled all day felt aggrieved that they had not earned more and were very angry and said so to the landowner. This is where we can see what Jesus is trying to get across.

He quotes that the first shall be last and the last be first, as was his mission to save sinners. He did not have to worry or minister to those who followed God but to those that didn’t, he came to save sinners and so he is delighted for them to come and be saved and treats them all the same, without discrimination on how long they have been faithful.

Tom Wright explains that he wanted to use this parable as a warning to the disciples about their attitude and be more humble and not look for rewards. In a previous reading they had been arguing who was the most important.  God makes covenants and promises a contract with us, basically as Jesus taught using the two greatest commandments ( love God and love your neighbour).Some people who work in churches can assume that they are special ones or “God’s inner circle” and in reality God is out in the market place looking for the people that ignore him; the early church needed to learn a lesson.

So where does that leave us? To remember that God is the centre of all we do, we have all been given jobs to do according to our God given talents, we should use them wisely and humbly and look to bring others to God’s family. Amen.

Jan B


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 them.

Let us come with openness to tell you our concerns for the Church and the world, to the God of compassion and gracious understanding.

Lord in your mercy – Hear our Prayer

Loving Father, whenever we start to get offended by your generosity or open-mindedness, give us the grace to repent and join your rejoicing. We thank you for all the help and encouragement we are given from the Church –its worship, teaching. Fellowship and its faithfulness in prayer. Bless and further all loving ministry in word and sacrament throughout the world Church; inspire us all to want your will and to do it. We pray for our new ordinands, Jan and Angie that, with your support, they will grow in their faith and confidence throughout their journey. We pray for those who support them, family, mentors, chaplains and their home parishes.

Lord in your mercy – Hear our Prayer

We pray for the families of those affected by natural disasters and wars. Lord, we pray for the world, where the misery and tragedy of wrong choices grieves your heart of love. Let there be wisdom and compassion in all negotiations and decisions; let there be humility in leadership and responsibility for right action shared by all. Increase in us love, not only for the victims, but for the perpetrators of evil and violence in our world; for all governments which run on corruption and fear.

Lord in your mercy – Hear our Prayer

Loving Father, we thank you for our family and friends, make us never exclusive, shutting others out, but always inclusive, welcoming others in. Remind us to treat them all with equal respect sharing our love equally. Lord, we bring to you the joys and worries, the frustrations and accomplishments of this week in the lives we have met and shared. As we pray, let your light shine into all these lives for fresh directing and lasting good.

Lord in your mercy – Hear our Prayer

Lord God, friend of those in need, your Son Jesus has untied our burdens

We bring to you those we know who are ill or suffering in any way. Thinking today especially of Rev Peter Reiss, Thomas Causton, Irene Garbett, Stephen Haslam, Barbara Priestley, Colin Roberts and Sue Roberts. Restore them in body, mind and spirit.

Lord in your mercy – Hear our Prayer

Lord, we remember in your presence all those who have died alone, unmourned and unnoticed as well as those we have known and loved. We keep in our prayers the families of Joan Finch and Stanley Schofield and from our book of remembrance John Edward Davies and Phyllis Hamer. Thank you for your promise of eternal life and peace. May we comfort one another through your love. Lord, we thank you for your offer of life in all its abundance; may we accept it with joy every day of our life.

Lord in your mercy – Hear our Prayer

Loving Father, thank you for helping us to pray; let us pray with as much compassion as you have shown us.

Rejoicing in the fellowship of all the saints, we commend ourselves to your unfailing love.

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 the Lord bless us and watch over us; the Lord make his face shine upon us and be gracious to us; the Lord look kindly on us and give us peace 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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