St Mary Magdalene Chancel

Weekly Online Service
19 July 2020 Patronal Festival

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

Love Divine

Love divine, all loves excelling,
joy of heaven, to earth come down,
fix in us thy humble dwelling,
all thy faithful mercies crown.

Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter every trembling heart.

Come, almighty to deliver,
let us all thy grace receive;
suddenly return, and never,
never more thy temples leave.

Thee we would be always blessing,
serve thee as thy hosts above;
pray, and praise thee, without ceasing,
glory in thy perfect love.

Finish then thy new creation:
pure and spotless let us be;
let us see thy great salvation
perfectly restored in thee;

Changed from glory into glory
till in heaven we take our place,
till we cast our crowns before thee,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.

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 the Father

Glory to God
Glory to God
Glory to the Father

To him be Glory
For ever.

To him be Glory
For ever.

Alleluia, Amen.

Alleluia, Amen.
Alleluia, Amen.
Alleluia, Amen.

Glory to God
Glory to God
Son of the Father

Glory to God
Glory to God
Son of the Father

To him be glory
For ever.

To him be glory
For ever.

Alleluia, Amen.

Alleluia, Amen.
Alleluia, Amen.
Alleluia, Amen.

Glory to God
Glory to God
Glory to the Spirit

Glory to God
Glory to God
Glory to the Spirit

To him be glory
For ever.

To him be glory
For ever.

Alleluia, Amen.

Alleluia, Amen.
Alleluia, Amen.
Alleluia, Amen.

The Collect of the Day is said or sung.

Almighty God, whose Son restored Mary Magdalene to health of mind and body and called her to be a witness to his resurrection: forgive our sins and heal us by your grace, that we may serve you in the power of his risen life; who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Amen.

The Old and New Testament Readings

Song of Solomon 3.1-4 - Read by Katie Smart

Upon my bed at night
   I sought him whom my soul loves;
I sought him, but found him not;
   I called him, but he gave no answer.
2 ‘I will rise now and go about the city,
   in the streets and in the squares;
I will seek him whom my soul loves.’
   I sought him, but found him not.
3 The sentinels found me,
   as they went about in the city.
‘Have you seen him whom my soul loves?’
4 Scarcely had I passed them,
   when I found him whom my soul loves.
I held him, and would not let him go
   until I brought him into my mother’s house,
   and into the chamber of her that conceived me.

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

2 Corinthians 5.14-17 - Read by Vic Harrington

For the love of Christ urges us on, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died. 15 And he died for all, so that those who live might live no longer for themselves, but for him who died and was raised for them.

16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once knew Christ from a human point of view, we know him no longer in that way. 17 So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

The Gospel

John 20.1-2,11-18 - Read by Pam Hagan

All sing: Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

The Gospel reader says

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John

All say: Glory to you, O Lord.

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. 2 So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.’

11 But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; 12 and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. 13 They said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’ She said to them, ‘They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.’ 14 When she had said this, she turned round and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? For whom are you looking?’ Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.’ 16 Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’ She turned and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabbouni!’ (which means Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, ‘Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” ’ 18 Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, ‘I have seen the Lord’; and she told them that he had said these things to her.

This is the gospel of the Lord.

All say: Praise to you, O Christ.

All sing: Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

Sermon

Mary Magdalene’s encounter with the risen Lord

John 19:41-20:18

May I speak in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.

+

Today, is the one Sunday in the year, when we celebrate the life of St Mary Magdalene; Our church’s Patronal Sunday. We’re not able to celebrate with a social gathering this year, but we can still celebrate together with joy in our hearts in our homes, or a personal individual thanksgiving prayer (keeping social distancing) in Church this morning, Between 10am-12noon. But for a minute or two, allow me to take you back just over 2000 years to the land of Palestine.

Come with me this morning, and imagine if you will…

It’s early, on a Sunday morning and still dark. Mary Magdalene wakes with a sigh to the sound of a cockerel crowing. She sits up, shivers and rubs her arms. It’s been a restless night. She’d been lying there, drifting in and out of sleep, exhausted, her mind refusing to close down and rest. Vivid pictures of Jesus on the cross flash back across her vision. Now she closes her eyes, wishing for a moment that she could blot it all out, but she can’t. “If only…”

There are things to do. She hears voices in the street below, and the shuffling of animals in the courtyard. She smells the smoke of early morning kitchen fires. She splashes cold water on her face, combs her hair without thought or care; the routine actions that begin every day; wrapping a shawl around her shoulders and picking up the spices she had prepared the day before; she slips on her scandals and leaves the house.

Her mind is still so heavy with grief. Saturday hadn’t helped. It merely continued the nightmare of Friday and delayed the opportunity to weep over Jesus’ body, to show her respect and love.

The main gates in the city wall are still closed but she slips through the tiny Needle-Gate.

She finds the path to the tomb; she knows where it is, she was there on Friday; and the tomb was new; the marks of the mason’s chisel still sharp and clear on the stone.

By now there’s a soft early morning light in the garden, and as she gets near, she pauses, and her eyes widen. The tomb is open! The stone’s been moved! She stops, looks around, then peers in a little closer. The tomb is empty!

Imagine if you will…

Mary Magdalene beginning the day early; while it was still dark. She couldn’t wait. Since she’d first met him, Jesus had filled her life. He’d accepted her without conditions, loved her as she was. Made her whole, helped her to love herself, to find new dignity and purpose in her life. Mary had responded with a passionate love which nothing could change. The men around Jesus had blown hot and cold. Sometimes they responded to his teaching with enthusiasm, at other times with questions and doubt. They’d misunderstood and quarrelled about their places in the coming Kingdom. And in the confused confrontation in the darkness of Gethsemane they’d run away. Abandoned Jesus. But not Mary. She’d stayed by the cross to the end.

She’d watched Jesus die, felt the agony; seen every laboured breath and movement of his muscles; and finally followed his body to the tomb. She was still numb, although a slow, weary acceptance of her loss was beginning to seep into her mind. This morning, with great courage and determination, she’d gathered the spices and cloths and set out for the garden.

As Mary arrives at the tomb, it’s all very sad and low key, like a film in slow motion. Everyone in the other Gospel accounts tell us other women went with her; everyone seems to move slowly; voices hushed.

Then suddenly, it’s as though someone’s pressed the fast-forward button and the film speeds up. Details vary; eye-witness accounts often do; but as they got nearer; they saw the guards had disappeared; the stone had been rolled away; the tomb was empty!

It was the first day of the week. Let’s take hold of the symbolism here. Jesus was laid in the tomb just before sunset; in the darkening shadows; at the end of the day. But now the morning light was chasing the darkness away. A new day was beginning. A new era. New? An adjective used to describe many things; a new tomb; a new commandment; a new covenant; a new creation; a new heaven and a new earth; but all that was still in the future; waiting to be understood. Mary had no inkling of it; no hint of reassurance yet.

She was walking towards the point of transformation; where two worlds, divine and human, met and focused, and where our understanding of life and death would be changed forever! Mary, was walking in sadness and despair towards a soon-to-be-revealed joy and hope.

But not quite yet…She was bewildered and could only interpret the scene in human terms. The stone was rolled away, the tomb was open and empty.

Someone must have removed his body…

Imagine if you will…

Early on that Sunday morning, Mary running back from the garden to Peter. She rushes up the stairs and bangs on the door. She went to him first. In spite of his denials, he was still the acknowledged leader of the Disciples. Mary is breathless from running and from the shock of finding the tomb open and empty.

Mary and Peter face each other in a meeting of opposites: The constant and the inconstant, the reliable and the unreliable, the joyful and the despairing. Yet Jesus had offered friendship to both. Welcomed, loved and accepted them both for who they were, and for what they could each become.

Gasping for breath, Mary may not have been at her most coherent, but Peter, and then John, heard what she had to say.

They looked at each other, questions in their eyes. What had really happened? Could it be true, or was Mary mistaken? They had to find out. Without any further word they made for the door, Mary following. The urgency made them run too. They were faster than Mary; Mary had already run the road once; and by the time she reached the garden again, they’d already seen the empty tomb and gone to tell the others…

Imagine if you will…

Mary, left at the tomb weeping. The tomb was open and empty so why did she stay? She’d gone early in the morning to care for Jesus but there was no body; there was nothing for her to do. Wasn’t it enough that they’d killed Jesus? They could have at least left his body in peace? Left it for her. Perhaps she felt as empty as the tomb. Jesus had been her life, now she was bereft, and left in complete despair, helpless.

Nothing could have prepared her for this!

Then Mary sensed movement, just out of sight. She turned, her head bowed, wiping away her tears. She sees a man’s feet, a gardener’s feet. “Why are you crying?” he asked, echoing the question of the angels. Mary, who’d loved Jesus so much, failed to recognize the voice. The last time she’d wept, she’d washed his feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. “He’s gone,” she sobbed, “they’ve taken him away.” I doubt if she could have identified who they were, but we always need someone to blame, somebody to hold responsible for events outside our control. Mary was weeping for Jesus; weeping for herself; weeping for all the love and hope she’d lost. Jesus had died; that was the end. Her grief didn’t allow for the impossible. And at this moment all the pent-up emotion, building within her over the Sabbath, finds its release. The dam breaks and the tears of emotion flood out!

“Why are you crying?” he asked. Mary was the first person to meet the risen Jesus and to hear his voice. Why her? Because she was there, waiting! Creating, the conditions in which he could speak to her. Yearning still for him, for his presence and his voice.

Immediately after the question “Women why are you crying?” comes another question. “For whom are you looking?” And in this one gut-wrenching moment of bleak distress Jesus reveals himself to Mary Magdalene. He came to her, as he comes to each one of us, in moments of our deepest weakness; hovering on the edge of our vision, offering his presence. We are never left alone…in our darkest moments we are never left alone!

Imagine if you will…

That deep surge of feeling that exploded in Mary’s heart as she recognized the voice; the grief and anger gone in an instant. In a wave of excitement and love and hope she accepted the impossible immediately. She had no questions, no reservations, no doubts. Mary’s heart recognized what her eyes had not. It was Jesus. He was there…

The other Gospels tell us that the messengers at the tomb had said, “He is not here; he has been raised!” (Matthew 28:6) But he was there, no longer lying inert in the tomb, but outside in the early morning quiet of the garden. Alive, vibrant!

Mary, cries out, but it’s the one word that Jesus speaks that captures the imagination; her name. Mary, (Mariam)…Jesus called her by name. It was more personal than the word women he’d used earlier. She’d heard him call her name many times. Asking for help, thanking her, using it in conversation with other followers on the road.

Using her name holds a greater significance than we realize. God loves the whole of his creation with passion. God loves the life he created, plants, animals and humankind. Then, God in Jesus loves his followers as a community; and he also loves each one of us as individuals. He loves Mary as Mary; loves Us as Us. Jesus called her by name. Just as we are all called by name. Here, there are echoes of the prophet Isaiah: “Fear not!” says Isaiah, “For I have Redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are mine.(Isaiah 43: 1)

The prophet recognises and rejoices in an intimacy between God and every part of his creation, between him and each one of us, a relationship even death cannot interrupt.

God loves with an unconditional love. God loves because he is love. He may be all-powerful but has set himself to work within the parameters of his love. God cannot not love. Love is the core of his very nature and we are called to live out that nature. We are called not to judge and condemn!

Imagine if you will…

Mary Magdalene in the garden, recognising Jesus in the early morning light. She reaches out to him, arms wide. It’s a natural reaction. Stand near the barrier at the railway station, or in the Arrivals hall at the airport and watch how people meet those they love. They touch, hug, kiss, hold; Mary hoped, expected that Jesus would stretch his hand out as he’d done in the past. She’d seen him do it to so many; to the paralysed man; the blind man; and the man with leprosy. And her hands naturally went out to him.

Mary is learning that she can no longer physically hold on to the risen Jesus, like she had in the past; life is going to be different now, there is so much for her to learn, but Jesus still loves her.

Imagine if you will…

Mary Magdalene the first person to see the risen Jesus. The first to hear his voice; the first to speak to him, and to be given the message to pass on to his friends. And Mary was a woman. Jesus gave Mary a message of good news to pass on; she was the first post-resurrection evangelist; and what good news it was!! Through Jesus’ death and Resurrection, the door to God’s Kingdom is now wide open. “Go to my brothers” Jesus said The family bond is confirmed. The relationship which Jesus enjoyed with God, and which he expressed in calling him Abba, Father. Is offered to all of them, and to each one of us.

“I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” The intimacy with God, which Jesus enjoyed, is offered to us all. An astonishing possibility which takes the breath away. The stone which stood between God and his creation is rolled away for ever…

The love in which Jesus lived can be ours and can give us the power to live for him; to change and to grow.

Mary Magdalene was willing to begin that process of change, for Jesus, her Lord. It doesn’t come ready-made. It calls for effort, and evangelists who claim it’s easy; do the Kingdom of God little service. There’s still a struggle. It’s no quick fix. The growth process lasts a lifetime and is never fully completed, but there can be much joy and fulfilment in the journey…

In this developing relationship, we can begin to see the world through new eyes, to identify the presence of God all around us.

Sometimes it’s shadowy, on the edge of vision, at other times crystal-clear. There’s joy when we catch a glimpse of it, when we hear the echo of it, even though we must wait for the fullness still to come. And as we grow closer to Christ, we realise that this relationship isn’t a transplant from outside. The presence of God is already within us, waiting to be released, waiting to flood and transform the depths of our being.

Much of life is routine, but at times, moments of transcendence may break through, and a feeling of the presence of God can suddenly overwhelm us…

Travelling by coach, on my own one year; to my parents’ home; in Devon; the weather was pretty dismal, there was a storm overhead, and the rain was torrential, when all of a sudden the sun shone through; there was not just one beautiful rainbow, but seven rainbows, bouncing this way and that, skipping across the fields. I sat at the window of the coach, the rain pounding on the glass; the reflections were quite breath taking. I felt an overwhelming sense of wonder and awe!!!

My smallness, seemed caught up into the immensity of God and his Universe. I had no words, they weren’t needed. The whole experience lasted only a few minutes (or was it a lifetime?) I’ve carried the wonder with me ever since.

And I believe Mary Magdalene too, carried the wonder of God’s presence in Jesus Christ with her throughout the rest of her life.

Mary Magdalene, that is, whose Feast Day we celebrate today in our hearts; who encountered the Risen Jesus in the garden, at the entrance, to the empty tomb.

He is risen, Jesus is risen indeed, Hallelujah! Amen.

Let us pray:

Father God,
We wish that we could see you as Mary did
But though we cannot see you with our eyes
We hear the whispers of your presence everywhere.
Earth is alive with echoes of your love,
Your rainbowed beauty treasures far and near.
Hints of your glory spread
In children’s innocence,
In lover’s joy,
In lives well lived,
In those who fight for justice and for truth.
In Jesus name
Amen

The Rev'd Jackie Fish, St Mary Magdalene, Enfield, 19/07/2020

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

God of life and love, whose risen Son called Mary Magdalene by name and sent her to tell of his resurrection to his apostles: in your mercy, help us, who have been united with him in this eucharist, to proclaim the good news that he is alive and reigns, now and for ever. 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

Thine be the Glory

Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son,
endless is the victory thou o’er death hast won;
angels in bright raiment rolled the stone away,
kept the folded grave-clothes where thy body lay.

Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son,
endless is the victory thou o’er death hast won,

Lo, Jesus meets us, risen from the tomb;
lovingly he greets us, scatters fear and gloom;
let the church with gladness hymns of triumph sing,
for her Lord now liveth, death hath lost its sting:

Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son,
endless is the victory thou o’er death hast won,

No more we doubt thee, glorious Prince of Life;
life is naught without thee: aid us in our strife;
make us more than conquerors through thy deathless love;
bring us safe through Jordan to thy home above:

Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son,
endless is the victory thou o’er death hast won.

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