St. Mary's Church

Second Sunday of Epiphany

Second Sunday of Epiphany

15 Jan 2022 • General news

Collect: Eternal Lord, our beginning and our end: bring us with the whole creation to your glory, hidden through past ages and made known in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Post Communion: God of glory, you nourish us with your Word who is the bread of life: fill us with your Holy Spirit that through us the light of your glory may shine in all the world.We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Isaiah 62. 1-5

1For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent,
and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest,
until her vindication shines out like the dawn,
and her salvation like a burning torch.2The nations shall see your vindication,
and all the kings your glory;
and you shall be called by a new name
that the mouth of the LORD will give.3You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the LORD,
and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.4You shall no more be termed Forsaken,
and your land shall no more be termed Desolate;
but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her,
and your land Married;
for the LORD delights in you,
and your land shall be married.5For as a young man marries a young woman,
so shall your builder marry you,
and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride,
so shall your God rejoice over you.

1 Corinthians 12. 1-11

1Concerning spiritual gifts, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed. 2You know that when you were pagans, you were enticed and led astray to idols that could not speak. 3Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God ever says ‘Let Jesus be cursed!’ and no one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except by the Holy Spirit.

4 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; 6and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. 7To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses.

John 2. 1-11

1On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. 2Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. 3When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, ‘They have no wine.’ 4And Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come.’ 5His mother said to the servants, ‘Do whatever he tells you.’ 6Now standing there were six stone water-jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. 7Jesus said to them, ‘Fill the jars with water.’ And they filled them up to the brim. 8He said to them, ‘Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward.’ So they took it. 9When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward called the bridegroom and said to him, 10‘Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now.’ 11Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.

 A Thought for January 16th. By Tony Thistlewood.

In our Corinthians reading today, St. Paul invites the readers of his letter to consider spiritual gifts. He knows he's talking to new Christians who are keen but unsure about some things.

I think it's still true to say that the Spiritremains for us the most sidelined part of The Holy Trinity. It's somehow easier to address God and Jesus is clearly a person that we can relate to. And yet the Spirit is also a person. In his letters Paul tells us that the Spirit speaks, he has a mind, he has a will.

When Jesus talks to his disciples for the last time, (John's gospel), he tells them,”the Father will give you another Advocate to be with you for ever. This is the Spirit of truth.......and he will be in you.........It is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you”.

So it's good to have the Holy Spirit. It's good because we have access all the time to God. The Spirit gives us power. The disciples noticed how important it was for Jesus to get away on his own and pray. Prayer with God seemed togive him his power and perspective and that's open to us now. If we pray to God it's just like praying with Jesus, except it's praying with the Spirit.

In Paul's letter to the Corinthians he gives a list of spiritual gifts; not an exhaustive list and too dramatic really to give the right impression. But remember many of the new Christians thought anything divine had to be dramatic.

A better list would include many of the things going on at St. Mary's; small things some of them, but nevertheless important. The effectiveness of St. Mary's is directly linked to each church member discovering and carrying out some spiritual gift or gifts. At a time of Interregnum it has never been more important that we use all our spiritual gifts.

And you can feel confident that if you believe in what Jesus has done for you, if you are drawn to God's Son,you have the encouragement of knowing that the power of God's Spirit is with you, a constant friend. 

Intercessions 16 January 2022

Gracious God, your Son Jesus began his ministry at a wedding celebration and through the miracle of the wine showed us the abundance of your wonderful love for us. May Jesus continue to transform the water of our everyday lives into the new wine of your kingdom on earth, transforming by his love the ordinary into the extra-ordinary.

(Short Silence)

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Holy God, we thank you for the ministry of marriage. May those so blessed grow old together in the knowledge that the best wine is saved till last and that Jesus is their companion on their journey through life together.

(Short Silence) (Short Silence)

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Father God, we pray for our world and the problems faced by so many of your children. We pray for all who live under the threat of war and terrorism and the poverty which comes in its wake. Govern the hearts and minds of all world leaders and those in authority that they may act justly, honestly and according to your will.

(Short Silence)

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

We pray for all in the healthcare services, both those in our congregation here, but also those who are our friends and neighbours. We pray with thanks for their ministry especially over the last two years during the pandemic and we ask you to strengthen them, to ease their tiredness and to give them perseverance.

We also pray for all others who are working in difficult times at the moment – our emergency services; shop workers; lorry drivers and other delivery people and all those whose work puts them at risk on a day by day basis.

(Short Silence)

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

We pray for all those who are sick at this time, whether at home or in hospital. We pray for all those we know who are in need of our prayer and in a few moments of silence we hold those we are concerned about up to you.

(Short Silence)

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Mighty God, we pray for those who have departed this life and ask you, through your loving kindness, to have mercy on their souls. We pray too for all those bereaved as they come to terms with their grief and loss.

(Short Silence)

Lord, in your mercy: hear our prayer

Faithful God, as we go out into the world we pray that we may reflect your love in our families, our church and our community; so that the world can witness that we are followers of Christ and draw others into his loving care.

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