This page contains all of the resources for our Sunday act of worship. You are encouraged to join us at 9:30am if you are from Widford or Wareside or 11am if you are from Hunsdon because these are the normal times of the services in these villages.
However, if you are unable to make this, please follow in your own time. Our use of common resources means that, though we are separated, we can nonetheless worship together.
If you have not worshipped with us before, you might like to watch our explanatory video guide first… (Actually, there’s good advice within it for everyone!)
Our whole act of worship this week is contained in this one video. Just click play and watch it through to the end – the words of the prayers and hymns will appear on screen. I hope this is helpful. The order of service is also given below if you wish to read it in your own time and choose different recorded versions of the hymns.
At the very bottom of the page is an extra video about the Holy Spirit and information on how to make donations to support the churches’ work.
Sentence of Scripture
You also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession – to the praise of his glory.
Prayer of Preparation
to whom all hearts are open,
all desires known,
and from whom no secrets are hidden:
cleanse the thoughts of our hearts
by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit,
that we may perfectly love you,
and worthily magnify your holy name;
through Christ our Lord.
Choose “Breathe on me, Breath of God” (traditional) or “Breath of God” (contemporary)
Collect for Pentecost (Whitsun)
Holy Spirit, sent by the Father,
ignite in us your holy fire;
strengthen your children with the gift of faith,
revive your Church with the breath of love,
and renew the face of the earth,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Prayers of Penitence
If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, God is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
(1 John 1:8-9)
Let us admit to God the sin that always confronts us.
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.
(cf. Psalm 51)
Hear the words of comfort our Saviour Christ says to all who truly turn to him:
God so loved the world
that he gave his only-begotten Son,
that whoever believes in him should not perish
but have eternal life.
Hear what Saint Paul says:
This saying is true and worthy of full acceptance,
that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.
(1 Timothy 1.15)
First Bible Reading
Second Bible Reading
Let us affirm our faith in Jesus Christ the Son of God.
Though he was divine,
he did not cling to equality with God,
but made himself nothing.
Taking the form of a slave,
he was born in human likeness.
He humbled himself
and was obedient to death,
even the death of the cross.
Therefore God has raised him on high,
and given him the name above every name:
that at the name of Jesus
every knee should bow,
and every voice proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
(cf. Philippians 2.6-11)
Use the player below to hear the prayers or click to read.
Almighty God, your Holy Spirit loosened the tongues of the first disciples to declare your wonders in languages they had never learned; as we pray today for the church, the world and our own communities, may that same Spirit equip us to proclaim your wonders in our lives, and embolden us to act as agents of transformation and blessing in a broken and needy world.
In union with Christ, your Son our Saviour, we pray:
For your church:
On this day, when we recall the first outpouring of your Spirit upon the church, we pray that the Spirit of Truth would indeed fill all Christians and lead them into a deeper knowledge of your perfect character. May that knowledge be more than mere facts to which we give our intellectual assent, being instead rich with the life-transforming personal encounters with you, that your church on earth would overflow with joy at what you have done, confidence in your promises for the future and self-sacrificial love for our neighbour.
For the world:
Lord God, in your word, we read, “God is not a human being that he should lie.” Sadly, we recognise that human beings do lie, and so we repent of any untruths we have propagated or in which we have been complicit. We pray for our nation and its leaders facing allegations of truth-twisting and outright lying. In these difficult days, we need both our government and our press to be worthy of the people’s trust, so we ask you to help ministers and journalists to be careful in their actions and truthful in their words, and to be particularly mindful of ways in which their words may be deliberately and unhelpfully misinterpreted.
We rejoice that, in a society where the very existence of truth has been denied, we are seeing a new hunger for it. As the spirit of the age strives to lead people away from the truth, to blind them to the truth and even to redefine truth, please help us by your Holy Spirit to be people of integrity, and enable us in all we do and say to point others to Jesus who is the truth.
For our communities:
Loving Father, we thank you for giving us our families, our networks of friends and the communities in which we live. We know that your love for these people is deeper than ours, and so we pray to you with confidence for them. We ask you to bless those who grieve with the assurance of your love and presence with them through the valley of the shadow of death. We pray this for those whose grief is new and raw and also for those for whom this time of year marks a painful anniversary.
We pray, too, for those whose attention is fixed not on the end of life, but on new beginnings – for pregnant women, new mothers and fathers and their precious but fragile children. As they emerge into a changed and dangerous world, grant them your protection and your peace.
Finally, we pray once again for all who are involved with the schools in our villages as important decisions are taken about re-opening. In your mercy, keep our children and our communities safe and happy.
We pray these things in the name of Jesus.
The Lord’s Prayer
As our Saviour taught us, so we pray
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.
The Spirit of Truth lead you into all truth,
give you grace to confess that Jesus Christ is Lord
and strengthen you
to proclaim the word and works of God;
and the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,
be with you always.
A lot of people find it hard to understand the Holy Spirit. Here’s a short introduction to some of the Biblical material about Him (yes, Him, not it – the Spirit is not an impersonal force like “The Force” in Star Wars!). There’s far more to say than this, of course, but this is a helpful overview of the Spirit of God and His work throughout the Bible and in the church today.
Some material in this service is from Common Worship: Services and Prayers for the Church of England (2000) and is copyright © The Archbishops’ Council. cf. www.churchofengland.org/prayer-and-worship/worship-texts-and-resources/common-worship