Our worship this morning will come from the Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Albans.
The worship that we were able to offer over the last few weeks and particularly during Holy Week and Easter would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of Paul Dunstan, the ministry team and many others.
In order to enable these people to have a much needed rest, and at the suggestion of the Bishop of St Albans, we and other parishes within the Diocese are linking to the worship being offered at our Mother church.
Below, you will find a sermon that Bishop Alan has recorded for this Sunday, and below that will be the live-stream of the service from the Abbey which will start at 10.00 am.
In addition Anthony Packer has kindly written intercessions for this parish.
My thoughts and prayers continue to be with you all.
Reverend Jenny Fennell
Intercessions - Anthony Packer
Lord God, we come before you at the end of this Easter Week in union with Your faithful children throughout the world, spread as we are across a wide variety of our homes and other places, in circumstances which, while unusual, we are gradually getting used to. We offer You our praise and thanksgiving for all You do for us; we present to You our souls and our bodies, to be put to Your purpose through the guidance of Your Holy Spirit, and with the wish that we may ever be united with You through the sacrifice of Your Son, Jesus our Saviour. And so, as we place ourselves, our families and friends in Your care, we ask Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Lord Jesus, you travelled through towns and villages, curing every disease and illness, making the sick well. Come to the aid of the world now, we pray, during the global spread of Covid 19, that all may experience your healing Love. Heal those who are sick with the virus, that they may regain their strength and health. Guard those providing medical expertise, or care for the infirm, and all who support them. Protect them not only from infection but also from physical and mental exhaustion. Heal all of us from the fear which prevents us from helping one another. Heal us from the pride which can make us claim invulnerability to a disease that knows no borders. Lord Jesus Christ, healer of all, stay by our side in this time of uncertainty and sorrow. And if, for some, the time has come when You call them to yourself, be with them to a peaceful passing from this world. Judge them mercifully as they enter Your presence and grant them rest with You in Your eternal peace.
Be with the families of all who are sick or have died as they worry and grieve, defend them from illness and despair, and let them know Your Peace. Be with the medical staff and carers, researchers and all who seek to heal and help those affected and who put themselves at risk in the process. May they all know Your protection and Your Love.
We ask that You guide the leaders of all nations, Lord, as they determine both the short- and long-term solutions that will help to minimise this outbreak and prepare for or prevent any in the future. Lead them, Lord, and help them to know Your will. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Lord, we pray for all who find themselves in financial difficulties at this time through no fault of their own: those who have been forced to close their business; those whose employment has ceased, perhaps permanently; those who were already unemployed and now find there is little chance of finding work. We pray, too, for the Food Banks and other charities set up to help them, and all who donate. And we pray for all those charities that are experiencing a drop in income, Lord, because their sources of fund-raising have either been closed or cancelled, and especially we pray for those charities supported by our congregation. Help them to find the means to continue their work, Lord – work which You have called them to do. Bless all their workers, and those they work to help. . Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
In its centenary year, Lord, we pray for our town, its leaders and its peoples; for all those who have carefully planned events which now cannot happen. We pray for our parish and our congregation.
We pray for all who are sick, and especially we pray for those whose hospital treatment has been deferred or cancelled because of the current pandemic. We pray for all those known to us.
We pray for all who have died; for all who have died from the coronavirus, for those known to us personally, and all whose anniversary falls at this time. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
We pray for all who are working from home, that they may find the time to do so without distraction. We pray for all children: those who are wondering when they will be going back to school; those who are doing their lessons at home and, perhaps, finding it more difficult than at school. Especially, Lord we pray for those whose GCSE and A-level exams have been cancelled and are wondering how the system for estimating grades will affect them and their future. Father of all, bless all children, everywhere. Guide their elders. Guard their interests. Keep them safe. . Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Lord, in these strange times we seek Your guidance, Your support to do what it is that You have called us to do. Be with us, Lord. Help us to hear clearly when You call, help us to understand, and give us the strength to always do Your will.
Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of Your Son, Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen.