Ascensiontide

Ascensiontide

Ascension(tide) is the season when we remember that the disciples let go of Jesus so that he can be present to all people at all times. He commissioned the disciples to continue his work and promised the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Hymn or Music

Opening Sentence – Colossians 3:1-2

Since then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.

The Lord be with you. And also with you.

We have come together in the name of Christ to offer our praise and thanksgiving, to hear and receive God’s holy word, to pray for the needs of the world, and to seek the forgiveness of our sins, that by the power of the Holy Spirit we may give ourselves to the service of God.

Responses

O Lord, open our lips:
And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.
O God make speed to save us:
O Lord make haste to help us.
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit:
As it was in the beginning, is now and shall be for ever. Amen.

Praise the Lord.
The Lord’s name be praised.

Hymn or Music

Prayer of Preparation

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.

Confession

Seeing we have a great high priest who has passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us draw near with a true heart, in full assurance of faith, and make our confession to our heavenly Father.

Silence is kept.

O King enthroned on high, filling the earth with your glory: holy is your name, Lord God almighty. In our sinfulness we cry to you to take our guilt away, and to cleanse our lips to speak your word, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Absolution

May almighty God, who in Jesus Christ has given us a kingdom that cannot be destroyed, forgive us our sins, open our eyes to God’s truth, strengthen us to do God’s will and give us the joy of his kingdom, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Collect

Grant, we pray, almighty God, that as we believe your only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ to have ascended into the heavens, so we in heart and mind may also ascend and with him continually dwell; who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Psalm

Bible Reading

Address

Hymn or Music

Affirmation of Faith (Apostles’ 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,
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.

Silent Prayers

Let us pray in silence for our own needs and for the needs of the world:

Lord, meet us in the silence.
And hear our prayer.

  • For the world (for peace, for all leaders, for those suffering or in need)
  • For the church (for our bishops, clergy, the diocese, local churches)
  • For our community (for leaders, groups, and those in need or distress)
  • For our friends and family (for those we love and those no longer with us)
  • For ourselves (we give thanks and we ask for help and guidance)

Risen Christ, you have raised our human nature to the throne of heaven: help us to seek and serve you, that we may join you at the Father’s side, where you reign with the Spirit in glory, now and forever. Amen.

Gathering our prayers and praises into one, let us pray as the Saviour taught us:

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.

Hymn or Music

Agape Meal

The Agape was the Love Feast of early apostolic times, a simple meal to which everyone was invited. All differences of economic and social standing were ignored, as Christians met as members of one family. As a sign of equal membership, the rich brought food for the poor, who brought nothing. The word ‘Agape’ describes a love which is selfless, sacrificial and unconditional. It is the love God has for us, shown in Jesus’ sacrificial death. We pray that in sharing this meal, we may then demonstrate that love to one another in our daily lives.

Reading (Colossians 3)

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

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

Prayer before the Meal

Come, Holy Spirit
and bless us as we meet together in unity.
As we eat and drink this meal,
may we be reminded of your unconditional love for us,
and may our eyes be opened
to recognise Jesus in each other.
We ask this prayer in his name
Amen.

The Distribution

We remain in our seats for the meal and, as a sign of our fellowship in Christ, we pass the food and drink to our neighbour, saying: ‘The Bread of Life’ and ‘The Cup of Blessing’

Prayer after the Meal

Lord, be with us through the fellowship of this meal.
May the food and companionship we share
nourish our hearts and minds,
and with our spirits refreshed,
may we live our lives to your praise and glory,
now and forever. Amen.

A Song of God’s Splendour (Psalm 96)

Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth.
Sing to the Lord and bless his name; tell out his salvation from day to day.
Declare his glory among the nations and his wonders among all peoples.
Honour and majesty are before him; power and splendour are in his sanctuary.
Ascribe to the Lord, you families of the peoples; ascribe to the Lord honour and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the honour due to his name; bring offerings and come into his courts.
O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness; let the whole earth tremble before him.
Tell it out among the nations that the Lord is king. With righteousness he will judge the world and the peoples with his truth.
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now and shall be for ever. Amen.

Prayer

Almighty God, who raised Jesus from the dead and exalted him to your right hand on high: may we know your resurrection power in our daily lives and look with hope to that day when we shall see you face to face and share in your glory, Father, Son and Holy Spirit: one God, now and for ever.

Hymn or Music

Blessing

May Christ our King make us faithful and strong to do his will, that we may reign with him in glory; and may the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among us and remain with us always. Amen.

Go in the peace of Christ. Alleluia, alleluia.
Thanks be to God. Alleluia, alleluia.

Hymn or Music