Sunday evening prayers at 7pm

Call to worship

On this Safeguarding Sunday,
we gather in the presence of God,
who loves each one of us.

We come, those who seem perfect,
those who are at peace.
We come, those who seem tarnished,
those who are discomforted.

We come together
to worship God,
all of us,
all loved,
all called,
all forgiven,
for all our hope is in God.

Photo by Monstera on Pexels.com

Adoration and Confession

God of earthquake, wind, and fire,
God of healing touch and uniting love,
God of our ancestors, neighbours, and grandchildren,
God of deafening silence and quiet harmonies –
We are drawn by Your Spirit
calling out to our own souls,
for You are the source of all life,
the home to which we will return.
In You we find strength and comfort,
safety and courage.
May all that is in us, praise You, O God!

We are crafted in Your divine image: we rejoice;
we fall short of Your perfect love: we lament;
we contribute to the pain of others: we confess;
we fear what we do not understand: we repent.

In our return to You, welcoming God,
we seek Your healing, transforming touch,
knowing You will not withhold it,
not now, not ever: praise be to You, O God!
Amen

PSALM 42

As the deer pants for streams of water,
    so my soul pants for you, my God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
    When can I go and meet with God?
My tears have been my food
    day and night,
while people say to me all day long,
    “Where is your God?”
These things I remember
    as I pour out my soul:
how I used to go to the house of God
    under the protection of the Mighty One[d]
with shouts of joy and praise
    among the festive throng.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
    Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
    for I will yet praise him,
    my Savior and my God.

My soul is downcast within me;
    therefore I will remember you
from the land of the Jordan,
    the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar.
Deep calls to deep
    in the roar of your waterfalls;
all your waves and breakers
    have swept over me.

By day the Lord directs his love,
    at night his song is with me—
    a prayer to the God of my life.

I say to God my Rock,
    “Why have you forgotten me?
Why must I go about mourning,
    oppressed by the enemy?”
10 My bones suffer mortal agony
    as my foes taunt me,
saying to me all day long,
    “Where is your God?”

11 Why, my soul, are you downcast?
    Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
    for I will yet praise him,
    my Savior and my God.

Psalm 43

Vindicate me, my God,
    and plead my cause
    against an unfaithful nation.
Rescue me from those who are
    deceitful and wicked.
You are God my stronghold.
    Why have you rejected me?
Why must I go about mourning,
    oppressed by the enemy?
Send me your light and your faithful care,
    let them lead me;
let them bring me to your holy mountain,
    to the place where you dwell.
Then I will go to the altar of God,
    to God, my joy and my delight.
I will praise you with the lyre,
    O God, my God.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
    Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
    for I will yet praise him,
    my Savior and my God.

Prayer of thanksgiving and intercession

Sometimes these prayers are placed together, and sometimes as two separate prayers. When bringing them together, we can give thanks and then intercede; or we can use what we are thankful for to help us pray for others. You may also want to include references to particular situations in your family, community and wider sphere.

Eternal defender and protector of the weak,
we give thanks for Your universal love,
which sees beyond our human labels and divisions,
rejoicing even more in Your preference for the outcast and oppressed.

We give thanks for everyone in the church
who works tirelessly, and often in confidence, to keep others safe;
we pray for all children and vulnerable adults who engage with our mission:
may they know Your love and protection.

We give thanks for the shelter and protection of our homes;
we pray for all people who are homeless, for whatever reason,
including refugees and victims of trafficking:
may they know Your love and protection.

We give thanks for the range and quality of food around us;
we pray for each person who is hungry,
whether they be across the world or on our doorsteps:
may Your love be shown in practical ways.

We give thanks for easy access to clean water;
we pray for all who are parched with thirst,
especially where the decision is dirty water or none:
may Your love be shown in practical ways.

We give thanks for the relative peace and security we enjoy:
we pray for all places of war and violence,
whether the aggressor be in the home or another nation:
may Your peace be known in our time.

We give thanks for all the bits of our life that bring us joy and contentment;
we pray for the broken-hearted, bereaved, and lonely,
and for all who have lost faith or purpose in life:
may Your peace be known in their hearts.

Healing, liberating, transforming God,
in amongst our shouts and songs of thanksgiving,
may we hear Your still whisper in the midst of pain and suffering,
and may we respond with courageous tenderness
to the needs around us,
as we follow the example of Christ Jesus, our teacher and Lord, AMEN.

blessing

“Return home,
and declare how much God has done for you.”
And the blessing of our ever-loving God,
Creator, Christ and Spirit,
rest upon you and all whom you love,
this day and forevermore, AMEN.

Sunday prayers at 7pm

Gathering prayer/Call to worship

From Psalm 8

O Lord, our Sovereign,
how majestic is Your name in all the earth!
You have set Your glory above the heavens.

When I look at Your heavens, the work of Your fingers,
the moon and the stars that You have established;
what are human beings that You are mindful of them,
mortals that You care for them?

O Lord, our Sovereign,
how majestic is Your name in all the earth!

Confession/Repentance

Glorious God,
it is the aim of our lives to worship You,
the crown and glory of our souls to adore You,
heavenly pleasure to approach You.
Give me power by Your Spirit to help us worship now,
so that we may forget the world,
be brought into fullness of life,
be refreshed, comforted, and blessed.

Give us knowledge of Your goodness
that we might not be overawed by Your greatness;

Let us draw near with holy boldness, given to us through us Jesus.
Let us approach in the power of the Holy Spirit,
who is our Mediator, Comforter, Interpreter.

Let us live wholly to our Saviour,
free from distractions,
from being hindered by the pursuit of what does not matter.

Remind us, we pray, that we are pardoned through the work of Jesus –
give us a new sense of it,
may we come every day,
that we may worship You always
in spirit and in truth.

For these things we ask in Jesus’ name
Amen

Psalm 8


1 O Lord, our Sovereign,
   how majestic is your name in all the earth!


You have set your glory above the heavens.
2   Out of the mouths of babes and infants
you have founded a bulwark because of your foes,
   to silence the enemy and the avenger.


3 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
   the moon and the stars that you have established;
4 what are human beings that you are mindful of them,
   mortals that you care for them?


5 Yet you have made them a little lower than God,
   and crowned them with glory and honour.
6 You have given them dominion over the works of your hands;
   you have put all things under their feet,
7 all sheep and oxen,
   and also the beasts of the field,
8 the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea,
   whatever passes along the paths of the seas.


9 O Lord, our Sovereign,
   how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Thanksgiving/Gratitude

O Lord God,
we praise You that in all things
we can know the guiding and comfort of Your Holy Spirit.
Give us, we pray, not our own weak desires
but the power of Your presence,
for this is the surest way to live in the truth.

Save us from all that hinders,
from being content with too little of Your Spirit,
from thinking that You will not give us more.
When we feel our lack of You, light up life and faith,
for when we lose sight of You,
we cannot truly see.
Teach us then what to do,
depending only upon, and waiting always for,
Your light.
Teach us to find and know fullness of Your Holy Spirit
only in Jesus.
Amen

Prayer for others/Intercession

Lord God,
we lift before You those who carry heavy burdens,
those who find each day a challenge,
those who struggle to see hope for the future.
Lord, we thank You that You are the ultimate source of all hope,
and we ask that You would use Your people, Your Church
to bring hope, healing and light into the darkness today.

Lord, we lift before You those who carry heavy burdens of responsibility –
for our leaders: local, national and around the world,
for those whose decisions will affect the lives of many,
give wisdom and compassion we pray.

Lord, we give You thinks for those who carry burdens of responsibility in our Church –
locally, nationally and globally.
May the spirit of truth and wisdom guide and protect all who serve,
in whatever capacity,
that You might be glorified in all our world.
For we ask this in the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ
Amen

Sunday Prayers at 7pm

Pentecost Sunday is one of the high points in the Church year, and Easter is a season that lasts 50 days, spanning Easter Sunday to Pentecost Sunday.

GATHERING PRAYER

God, at Pentecost, You spoke through flame and fire
As we gather, through the power of Your Spirit,
may we follow Your call.

God, at Pentecost, Your Advocate spoke truth in our world
As we gather, through the power of Your Spirit,
may we hear and obey.

God, at Pentecost, You celebrated the gifts of diversity in cultures
As we gather, through the power of your Spirit,
may You hear our heart languages of prayer and praise.

God, at Pentecost, Your Helper offered peace to every troubled heart
As we gather, through the power of Your Spirit,
may You calm every anxious heart.

Amen

Confession

This prayer brings the Spirit as helper and Spirit as truth, both in John 14:16, into conversation with the themes of Genesis 11:1-9. The words from John 14:27 are used as part of the assurance of forgiveness.

God, You are our truth-teller,
sifter of human hearts, strainer of human motives.

God, in Your truth, You reveal us as like Babel,
we build our towers,
to be known and recognised,
to gather to ourselves our human achievements.

God, In Your truth, You reveal our
love for the law of similar,
the comfort we find in the familiar,
the cultures and people we know.

God, You reveal
our struggles with difference,
our rigidity in the face of diversity.

We pause in confession, making space for the Spirit of truth,
sifter of human hearts, strainer of human motives.

And we hear Your words of forgiveness,
‘Peace I leave with you’, God’s peace given to us.
In You, God, our hearts are no longer troubled,
and for this, we gratefully say, Amen.

Thanksgiving

This prayer works with Acts 2, giving thanks for what a Spirit empowered church might look like. The refrain is drawn from Acts 2:19 in The Message, “I’ll set your wonders in the sky above and signs on the earth below.” What if the signs on earth below include humans, empowered by Spirit?

Spirit of God, we rejoice in Your empowering
The graces You give to each of us, the graces You give to this church
The chatter of our young and the wisdom of our old
The texts of our teenagers and the words of our elders
We celebrate these signs from Your Spirit in our midst

Spirit of God, we rejoice in Your diversity
The gifts and graces You give to the global church
Those who sing Your song in the high-rises of Manila
Those who serve Your mission in the slums of Brazil
We celebrate these signs from Your Spirit in our midst

Spirit of God, we rejoice in Your liberation
The liberation You bring to all those enslaved
The freedom You offer the addicted
The justice You seek for the trafficked
We celebrate these signs from Your Spirit in our midst

Spirit of God, we rejoice in Your gifts
The challenge of prophets, the hope of our dreamers
The insights of everyone one of us, men and women
We celebrate these signs from Your Spirit in our midst

Spirit of God, we rejoice in Your scattering
Your work across the world
The partnerships we share with agencies and workers for justice
And churches in countries near and far
We celebrate these signs from Your Spirit in our midst

Prayers for others

When we look at our world,
we see war and conflict,
hatred between people of different languages.
With God’s Spirit we pray, “Only love can conquer hate”

When we look at our country,
we see egos and deals,
building projects and business towers.
With God’s Spirit we pray, “Only love can conquer hate”

When we look at our church,
we see tribalisms and insecurity
denominations that seem fractured.
With God’s Spirit we pray, “Only love can conquer hate”

When we look at ourselves,
we see suspicion of others,
mistrust and indifference toward those not like us.
With God’s Spirit we pray, “Only love can conquer hate”

And so, empowered and renewed by Your Spirit,
we pray with God’s church around the world,

Our Father…

FOR THE QUEEN

God’s steadfast love endures for ever.
God’s mercies, they never cease; they are new every morning.
and great is God’s faithfulness.

We give thanks for these festive days,
and for the long and happy reign of our beloved Queen.
Grant to her joy and happiness throughout this Platinum Jubilee.

God bless this food to our use,
God bless our lives in service to others,
God bless all whom we hold dear.
God bless The Queen.
Amen.

Blessing

Go in the name of the God who scatters
May the wind of the Spirit enfold you into God’s mission
May the warmth of the Spirit rest on your work
May the words of the Spirit fill your mouth for witness
May the sounds of the Spirit guide your walk

AMEN

Sunday evening prayers

Gathering prayer

The light is spreading.
It started off one Easter
when tombstones rolled and graves were found empty,
Jesus was alive.
The news spread from disciple to apostle,
from followers to strangers.
It spread like a fire among us, this news of new life.
It spreads still today, among us
who dare believe that life and death is not all there is.
In this place new light is streaming,
the Good News still has power to unfold and renew.

We come to re-weave the unravelling fabric of community.
To re-connect once more with the larger human family.
To find once more that place of calm.
To remind ourselves that we belong.
And to remember what it is we belong to.
We are many, as the stars that fill the night,
as the cluster of the grapes upon the vine,
as a flock of birds in flight,
as the branches of a tree,
as the waves upon the ocean.
We are also one body, and the work of Christ is done
when we learn to live in true community.
We come –
To centre ourselves,
to open ourselves,
to remember ourselves.
And to celebrate the life we share together.

We enter into this time and this place to join our hearts and minds together.
To remember what is most important in life.
To be challenged to live more truly, more deeply,
to live with integrity and kindness and with hope and love,
to feel the company of those who seek a common path,
to be renewed in our faith in the promise of this life,
to be strengthened and to find the courage
to continue to do what we must do,
day after day,
world without end. Amen

Prayer of concern (i)

May we hang around for people,
may we linger with intent… to care,
may we breach the peace… with justice.
May we not just look for a new thing, but follow it through,
not just have an idea but make it happen,
not complain about this and that, but do something about it.

In all our joys and in all our concerns, may we be ever mindful
Of the presence of God among us

May we turn our words into acts,
our thoughts into reality,
our intent into a way of life.
May we move beyond the word,
becoming the word
and move with the word,
becoming flesh.
May we walk the talk,
speak of good things,
and find ourselves living them as well.

In all our joys and in all our concerns, may we be ever mindful
Of the presence of God among us

So may we dare to speak of setting people free
and find ourselves working towards a freedom
bound up in each other.
May we dare to speak of justice
and find ourselves proclaiming that justice here,
in everyday acts of compassion.
May we dare to speak of welcome towards the stranger
and find ourselves among strangers here,
and loving them into community.

In all our joys and in all our concerns, may we be ever mindful
Of the presence of God among us

May we pay Christ more than lip-service
but serve Him with our whole lives. Amen

Psalm 97

The Lord is king! Let the earth rejoice;
   let the many coastlands be glad!
2 Clouds and thick darkness are all around him;
   righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne.
3 Fire goes before him,
   and consumes his adversaries on every side.
4 His lightnings light up the world;
   the earth sees and trembles.
5 The mountains melt like wax before the Lord,
   before the Lord of all the earth.


6 The heavens proclaim his righteousness;
   and all the peoples behold his glory.
7 All worshippers of images are put to shame,
   those who make their boast in worthless idols;
   all gods bow down before him.
8 Zion hears and is glad,
   and the towns of Judah rejoice,
   because of your judgements, O God.
9 For you, O Lord, are most high over all the earth;
   you are exalted far above all gods.


10 The Lord loves those who hate evil;
   he guards the lives of his faithful;
   he rescues them from the hand of the wicked.
11 Light dawns for the righteous,
   and joy for the upright in heart.
12 Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous,
   and give thanks to his holy name!

Psalm 97 confesses God as the sovereign who rescues the faithful. The Psalmist affirms that God’s throne, a symbol of power, is founded on justice. Such foundations will stand, in contrast to the unjust foundations of power shaken by the earthquake in Acts

Prayer of concern (ii)

Make in us a captive conscience, quick to hear, to act, to plead;
make us truly sisters, brothers of whatever race or creed –
Teach us to be fully human, open to each other’s need.

May God bless us with a restless discomfort about easy answers,
half-truths and superficial relationships,
so that we may seek truth boldly
and love deep within our hearts.

May God bless us with holy anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people,
so that we may tirelessly work for justice, freedom,
and peace among all people.

May God bless us with the gift of tears
to shed with those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation,
or the loss of all that they cherish,
so that we may reach out our hands to comfort them and transform their pain into joy.

May God bless us with enough foolishness
to believe that we really CAN make a difference in this world,
so that we are able, with God’s grace,
to do what others claim cannot be done. Amen

Blessing

We go now for the Spirit of God is alive in the land.
We go in the power of love,
with the blessing of God upon us. Amen