ST. MAXENTIUS WORSHIP AT HOME – Trinity 5, Sunday 17thJuly


Good morning everyone, well after a run in with Covid hopefully things can run a little smoother. Everyone says enjoy the rest but it is frustrating but quite appropriate to slow down and take stock. A time to thank God for vaccines and realise how many lovely people are around you to help out with shopping etc. In today’s Gospel we hear about Martha and Mary a well-known tale of two sisters who work in different ways and one who can rest and one who finds it difficult, quite appropriate for me today.

Our intercessions today are from Joyce Armstrong and the reflection is by myself.

Jan B.


Loving God, we have come to worship you.

Help us to pray to you in faith, to sing your praise with gratitude, and to listen to your word with eagerness; through Christ our Lord. Amen.


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 all of 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.


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 and everlasting God, by whose Spirit the whole body of the Church is governed and sanctified: hear our prayer which we offer for all your faithful people, that in their vocation and ministry they may serve you in holiness and truth to the glory of your name; through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.



He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through him and for him. He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.

And you who were once estranged and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his fleshly body through death, so as to present you holy and blameless and irreproachable before him— provided that you continue securely established and steadfast in the faith, without shifting from the hope promised by the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven. I, Paul, became a servant of this gospel.

I am now rejoicing in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am completing what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church. I became its servant according to God’s commission that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, the mystery that has been hidden throughout the ages and generations but has now been revealed to his saints. To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. It is he whom we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone in all wisdom, so that we may present everyone mature in Christ.

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


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

LUKE 10. 38-42

Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.’ But the Lord answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.’

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


I really like this story and often think of it when I’m busy and rushing around, thinking why am I doing this? Or forgetting the reason I am doing it, sometimes not even enjoying the moment for the sake of getting a task done. As I said in my introduction I have had a chance to stop and reflect recently, being confined to home, apart from a few solitary walks around my area to get some fresh air. When I did an ALM prayer and spirituality course I was asked to describe myself to a lovely lady who was my prayer guide and we chatted about various things and I told her then that I was definitely a Martha and not a Mary, how I was often busy but liked to make sure things were done and done correctly, also that at times I have to stop and think, “am I doing the right thing”. Mary had, as it seems the right idea, what an amazing chance to have Jesus in your home and she was listening intently to every word. Martha was probably also in awe at who was visiting and like most of us wanted to make a good impression, by making food and ensuring the house was spotless, so she obviously was annoyed at her sister who left her to do the work.

I did a bit of research at other points of view and read from Tom Wright who gives some detail on how houses were run during Jesus’ time. He says that Mary was behaving like a man! As only men were allowed in that space of the home, the women could only mix with men outside where the little children played and in the marital bedroom, he suggests that it was scandalous that Mary sat at his feet as this is where men sat who were teachers or preachers. So Martha was angry that her sister was behaving shamelessly. Obviously Jesus did not agree with that and encourages both Mary and Martha to listen to his teaching, this could be seen that Jesus was encouraging women to be teachers as well as men.

My prayer guide pointed out to me another account of Martha and Mary in John’s Gospel. This is the death of their brother Lazarus who was a friend of Jesus. The tides are turned, in that later on, it is Martha who shows her faith and goes to meet Jesus while Mary stays in the house. John reports the conversation with Martha when she tells Jesus that she knows he is the Messiah and that whatever he asks of God would be given to him. “Lord if you had been here my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him”

She also says “Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world”.

This shows Martha’s faith is strong and unlike previously, shows that she does indeed respect and listens to Jesus and Mary on this situation is shown as the weaker sister.

We are all different, we all cope with situations in different ways and Martha and Mary although sisters where very different but this is no bad thing. Luke wrote his Gospel for non-Jews and minority groups, this includes women and he tried to bring the good news to all. So if you are a Martha like me it isn’t wrong, it is you, but as I do at times you have to stop and think and keep him and others in your prayers and actions.

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 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, he is seated at the right hand of the Father, and he will come 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.

Living God, we come with gladness to worship you, with joy to praise you, with wonder to thank you, and with awe to greet you. We come with all our weakness before your strength, all our foolishness before your wisdom, and all our smallness before your greatness. Yet we come knowing that you accept us, despite our faults, that you love us, despite our failures, that you wait to speak to us, despite our disobedience, that you long to bless us, despite our ingratitude.

We ask for your blessing on all who teach and minister in your name: for our Bishops David and Mark, and for the support of our own clergy here in the Turton Moorland Team. We pray for those called to speak God’s values whatever the danger and regardless of popularity

Lord in your mercy           Hear our prayer

Father, we pray once more for our troubled and divided world so full of anger, so full of tension, so full of need. Govern the hearts and minds of those in authority, and bring the families of the nations, divided and torn apart by the ravages of sin, to be subject to his just and gentle rule.
Lord in your mercy             Hear our prayer

Father, we thank you for the joy of family and friends, for all with whom we share our daily life and those we love but seldom see. Fill our homes and neighbourhoods with the generosity and trust that allows space but is always ready to encourage and support.  Give us grace to respect one another and ourselves in the way we talk and think, and in the way we behave.

Lord in your mercy             Hear our prayer

We pray for all who battle against sickness and disease unable to

live life to the full and fearful as to what the future may hold, renew their strength and refresh their spirits.

Bless and strengthen all who minister to the needs of others not only the professional carers but those who perform small but vital acts of kindness for friends and family, neighbours and strangers.

Lord in your mercy                      Hear our prayer

We call to mind all those we have known and loved who lived among us and have now died. We pray for any who made that journey unnoticed and alone and we ask that they may all know your mercy and the everlasting peace and joy of heaven. We pray for all who grieve, and we ask that you be with them Lord.

Lord in your mercy                      Hear our prayer

Lord may we live in faith, walk in love, and be renewed in hope, until the world reflects your glory and you are all in all. Amen.

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 this day 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.


May the love of the Lord Jesus draw us to himself, the power of the Lord Jesus strengthen us in his service, the joy of the Lord Jesus fill our hearts 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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