St Mary Magdalene Enfield Sanctuary

Weekly Online Service
12 July 2020 The Fifth Sunday after Trinity

Please find below our service for this week. You can also click on the PDF button to open and download a copy of the printed generic Service booklet.

You will find an opening hymn played on the organ by Keith Beniston - words are included. This is followed by the service. Finally there is a closing hymn. Please feel free to follow along in whichever way you feel most comfortable. Words in bold are for everyone to join in.

Hymn

Be Thou my vision

Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart,
be all else but naught to me, save that thou art;
be thou my best thought in the day and the night,
both waking and sleeping, thy presence my light.

Be thou my wisdom, be thou my true word,
be thou ever with me, and I with thee, Lord;
be thou my great Father, and I thy true son;
be thou in me dwelling, and I with thee one.

Be thou my breastplate, my sword for the fight;
be thou my whole armour, be thou my true might;
be thou my soul’s shelter, be thou my strong tower:
O raise thou me heavenward, great Power of my power.

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise:
be thou mine inheritance now and always;
be thou and thou only the first in my heart;
O Sovereign of heaven, my treasure thou art.

High King of heaven, thou heaven’s bright Sun,
O grant me its joys after vict’ry is won;
great Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
still be thou my vision, O Ruler of all.

Service Audio

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit

All say Amen.

Grace, mercy and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you

and also with you.

Almighty God,
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. Amen.

The Prayers of Penitence

God so loved the world that he gave his only Son Jesus Christ to save us from our sins, to be our advocate in heaven, and to bring us to eternal life.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith, firmly resolved to keep God’s commandments and to live in love and peace with all.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father,
we have sinned against you
and against our neighbour
in thought and word and deed,
through negligence, through weakness,
through our own deliberate fault.
We are truly sorry and repent of all our sins.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,
who died for us, forgive us all that is past
and grant that we may serve you in newness of life
to the glory of your name.  Amen.

Almighty God,
who forgives all who truly repent,
have mercy upon you,
pardon and deliver you from all your sins,
confirm and strengthen you in all goodness,
and keep you in life eternal;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Gloria in Excelcis

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

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.

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

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.

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

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.

Glory to God, Glory to God,
Glory to God in the highest.

The Collect of the Day is said or sung.

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.

The Old and New Testament Readings

Genesis 25.19-34 - Read by Jean McDonald

These are the descendants of Isaac, Abraham’s son: Abraham was the father of Isaac, 20 and Isaac was forty years old when he married Rebekah, daughter of Bethuel the Aramean of Paddan-aram, sister of Laban the Aramean. 21 Isaac prayed to the Lord for his wife, because she was barren; and the Lord granted his prayer, and his wife Rebekah conceived. 22 The children struggled together within her; and she said, ‘If it is to be this way, why do I live?’ So she went to inquire of the Lord. 23 And the Lord said to her,
‘Two nations are in your womb,
   and two peoples born of you shall be divided;
one shall be stronger than the other,
   the elder shall serve the younger.’
24 When her time to give birth was at hand, there were twins in her womb. 25 The first came out red, all his body like a hairy mantle; so they named him Esau. 26 Afterwards his brother came out, with his hand gripping Esau’s heel; so he was named Jacob. Isaac was sixty years old when she bore them.

27 When the boys grew up, Esau was a skilful hunter, a man of the field, while Jacob was a quiet man, living in tents. 28 Isaac loved Esau, because he was fond of game; but Rebekah loved Jacob.

29 Once when Jacob was cooking a stew, Esau came in from the field, and he was famished. 30 Esau said to Jacob, ‘Let me eat some of that red stuff, for I am famished!’ (Therefore he was called Edom.) 31 Jacob said, ‘First sell me your birthright.’ 32 Esau said, ‘I am about to die; of what use is a birthright to me?’ 33 Jacob said, ‘Swear to me first.’ So he swore to him, and sold his birthright to Jacob. 34 Then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and drank, and rose and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Romans 8.1-11 - Read by Bryan Ward

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do: by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and to deal with sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 so that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. 6 To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. 7 For this reason the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law—indeed it cannot, 8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

9 But you are not in the flesh; you are in the Spirit, since the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. 10 But if Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

The Gospel

Matthew 13.1-9,18-23 - Read by Jayne Buckland

All sing: Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

The Gospel reader says

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew

All say: Glory to you, O Lord.

That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the lake. 2 Such great crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat there, while the whole crowd stood on the beach. 3 And he told them many things in parables, saying: ‘Listen! A sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seeds fell on the path, and the birds came and ate them up. 5 Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and they sprang up quickly, since they had no depth of soil. 6 But when the sun rose, they were scorched; and since they had no root, they withered away. 7 Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. 8 Other seeds fell on good soil and brought forth grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 Let anyone with ears listen!’

18 ‘Hear then the parable of the sower. 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what is sown in the heart; this is what was sown on the path. 20 As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21 yet such a person has no root, but endures only for a while, and when trouble or persecution arises on account of the word, that person immediately falls away. 22 As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the lure of wealth choke the word, and it yields nothing. 23 But as for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.’

This is the gospel of the Lord.

All say: Praise to you, O Christ.

All sing: Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

Sermon

It’s the way he tells them.

Matthew 13.1-9,18-23

“The reason I speak to them in parables is that ‘seeing they do not perceive, and hearing they do not listen, nor do they understand.’ … But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. Truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it. (Matthew 13:13, 16-17)

In other words, the way we hear them tells us how open we really are to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus uses this first parable to prime us for the seven parables that will follow. They are all about the Kingdom of God. This one is not really about the soil but about the character of God, and how God reveals that character to those who recognize it.

Throughout this chapter of Matthew, Jesus keeps saying, “those who have ears, let them hear; anyone with ears, listen!” In other words, these stories will find the ones who can understand them. As we listen to the story, it will identify which kind of person we are by the way we hear it. The depth of our understanding depends on our willingness to be changed by what we hear. For example, we can take the story at face value: seeds get sown, and where they land determines how well they will grow.

Or, we can try to find meaning, treating it strictly as an metaphor. The Sower is God, the Word is the gospel of Jesus Christ, and the soil is our hearts. Using this interpretation, and the explanation Jesus gives of this story, we might think the point is to do everything we can to become good soil.

But then we have a problem: we can’t change the kind of soil we are – only God can do that. The bigger problem with this kind of interpretation is that it makes the story to be about us, about the soil. But the story is not about us being good dirt; the story is for us. This parable, like all scripture, is really about God and God’s extravagant generosity. So let’s look at that for a moment.

God is the Sower, scattering seed liberally, even wastefully, everywhere. God sows; it’s what he does. It’s what he keeps on doing, he keeps throwing seeds, regardless of where it might land. God is love, and love is generous, lavish, abundant, and eager to share what is good. God will not hold back the Word from anyone. he will not deny anyone access to the Good News.

He sows liberally, even wastefully. This parable tells of a sower who is ridiculously generous with the amount of seed he scatters, throwing it not only on the good soil but on soil that even we can recognize wasn’t a good bet: thorny soil, rocks, and even a beaten path. Not much chance seed would take root in that.

God doesn’t use a computer-driven tractor to plot out perfectly spaced rows, carefully inserting each seed at the exact depth of carefully prepared soil for optimum germination. God scatters the Good News of the Kingdom of God liberally, even in places where it is not likely to grow or bear fruit. God sows everywhere.

Whether on the path, on rocky soil, among thorns, or in the good dirt, the Good News cannot be contained. God does not discriminate it goes everywhere, out into the world, to transform anyone who will accept it. You see seed can only become fruitful when it stops being a seed. Seed must die to become a plant. It breaks open, just as God has broken into the world in the person of Jesus. As it grows, it becomes something that is not a seed anymore – it becomes a plant that bears more seed!

As we listen to the parables of Jesus how will our ears hear them? How will we be changed, as we find ourselves drawn into God’s story, as God invites us to become part of it? How willing are we to be transformed by that story, becoming something new?

Each Sunday, clergy cast the gospel as broadly as possible, with no guarantee where it will land. We know that people come to church for all kinds of reasons; possibly a newcomer, checking out this church as they look for a place to call their spiritual home. Perhaps you come because you’re experiencing a crisis in your life. Perhaps you come out of habit, or to see friends you hope will also be here. This is your social network. And just maybe you come because you are hungry for God’s Word. You could be eager to bring your praise and your gifts to worship the Lord in the spirit of holiness. But clergy know that no matter how carefully crafted the sermon may be, no matter how much prayer and study have been poured into sharing the Word, the chances of something taking root are no better than the sower’s.

Yet that is what we have all been called to do. To sow the seed and to bear the heartache and frustration when it falls on rocky, weed-infested ground. And we’ve all been there! Each of us has experienced the hard truths of this parable on some level. Every parent whose words of loving concern have fallen on a teenager’s deaf ears knows hard-packed ground. Everyone who has run a business with integrity, only to see customers go where prices are cheaper, understands shallow roots. Everyone who has been overwhelmed with worry, or caught in the trap of loving money has experienced the chokehold of thorny weeds. This parable reminds us that we are not alone in these struggles.

The parable also reminds us as church, we may be tempted to invest time, energy, and hope in trying to coax growth among people who don’t want to grow. We can waste precious effort despairing when the seeds we sow do not take root.

The sower doesn’t do that. He accepts the reality that a good chunk of seed will fall on bad soil. Yet the sower keeps sowing. Jesus keeps spreading the word, and he calls us to do the same. But Jesus calls us to something even more in this parable. He calls us to hope. Jesus challenges us to believe in God’s abundance. This story is filled with the promise of lavish abundance, even in the face of rejection and the hard realities of living in this world.

God does not hold back. God is not worried about whether there will be enough seed or grace or love. God may want our hearts to be good soil but nevertheless hurls a ridiculous amount of seed even on dry, thorny, or beaten soil. Why, because there is enough!”

This story is not about the dirt. The story is about God, and the way he breaks into our lives in the person of Jesus, to change us, and offers us his extravagant love.

The story is about God’s abundant generosity, and God’s desire to draw us into the kind of transformation that bears abundantly more than a “normal” crop could possibly bear. Hear God’s love for you, become something new, become part of God’s story. Let the Word of God grow in you! Let the parables change you. Let all who have ears, listen! Amen.

The Rev'd Maureen Lunn, St Mary Magdalene, Enfield, 12/07/2020

Service Audio

The Nicene Creed

We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father;
through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven,
was incarnate from the Holy Spirit
and the Virgin Mary, and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory
to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son
is worshipped and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. Amen.

The Intercessions 

The Intercessions list has been circulated with petitions for the Church, The World, The Community, Our Keyworkers, The Sick and the Deceased. The Diocesan Cycle of Prayer is found at:

London Anglican Cycle of Prayer

This or another response may be used:

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

In the power of the Spirit and in union with Christ, let us pray to the Father.

Almighty God, our heavenly Father, you promised through your Son Jesus Christ to hear us when we pray in faith.

Strengthen N our bishop(s) and all your Church in the service of Christ, that those who confess your name may be united in your truth,
live together in your love, and reveal your glory in the world.

Bless and guide Elizabeth our Queen; give wisdom to all in authority;
and direct this and every nation in the ways of justice and of peace;
that we may honour one another, and seek the common good.

Give grace to us, our families and friends, and to all our neighbours,
that we may serve Christ in one another, and love as he loves us.

Comfort and heal all those who suffer in body, mind, or spirit …;
give them courage and hope in their troubles; and bring them the joy of your salvation.

Hear us as we remember those who have died in the faith of Christ …; according to your promises, grant us with them a share in your eternal kingdom.

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

Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ.  Amen.

The Peace

We are the body of Christ.
In the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body.
Let us then pursue all that makes for peace and builds up our common life.

The peace of the Lord be always with you.

and also with you.

A sign of peace may be exchanged.

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.  Amen.

Collect

Grant, O Lord, we beseech you, that the course of this world may be so peaceably ordered by your governance, that your Church may joyfully serve you in all godly quietness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Blessing

The peace of God,
which passes all understanding,
keep your hearts and minds
in the knowledge and love of God,
and of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord;
and the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among you and remain with you always. Amen.

The Dismissal

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

In the name of Christ.  Amen.

Recessional Hymn

God is working His purpose out

God is working his purpose out, as year succeeds to year,
God is working his purpose out, and the time is drawing near;
nearer and nearer draws the time, the time that shall surely be,
when the earth shall be filled with the glory of God
as the waters cover the sea.

From utmost east to utmost west, wherever feet have trod,
by the mouth of many messengers goes forth the voice of God,
‘Give ear to me, ye continents, ye isles, give ear to me,
that the earth may be filled with the glory of God
as the waters cover the sea.’

What can we do to work God’s work, to prosper and increase
the love of God in all mankind, the reign of the Prince of peace?
What can we do to hasten the time, the time that shall surely be,
when the earth shall be filled with the glory of God
as the waters cover the sea?

March we forth in the strength of God, with the banner of Christ unfurled,
that the light of the glorious gospel of truth may shine throughout the world;
fight we the fight with sorrow and sin, to set their captives free,
that the earth may be filled with the glory of God
as the waters cover the sea.

All we can do is nothing worth unless God blesses the deed;
vainly we hope for the harvest-tide till God gives life to the seed;
yet nearer and nearer draws the time, the time that shall surely be,
when the earth shall be filled with the glory of God
as the waters cover the sea.

Material from Common Worship 2000 is included in this service and is copyright © The Central Board of Finance of the Church of England.