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Sunday, 16/01/2022: Second after Epiphany

FreeBibleimages :: Wedding at Cana :: Jesus intervenes when the host of a  wedding runs out of wine (John 2:1-11)

OPENING SENTENCE OF SCRIPTURE
“With you is the well of life.”

HYMN

GREETING

Grace and peace to you from God our Father

and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen

COLLECT FOR PURITY

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.

SUMMARY OF THE LAW

Our Lord Jesus Christ said: The first commandment is this:

Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is the only Lord. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.”

The second is this: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these. Amen. Lord, have mercy.

Description: Description: Description: Confession under section 67 NDPS Act to be admitted or not, yet to ...

CONFESSION AND ABSOLUTION

God is love and we are God’s children. There is no room for fear in love. We love because God loved us first.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith.

SILENCE

God our Father,

we confess to you

and to our fellow members in the Body of Christ

that we have sinned in thought, word and deed,

and in what we have failed to do.

We are truly sorry.

Forgive us our sins,

and deliver us from the power of evil,

for the sake of your Son who died for us, Jesus Christ, our Lord.

ABSOLUTION

God, who is both power and love,

forgive you and free you from your sins,

heal and strengthen you by the Holy Spirit,

and raise you to new life in Christ our Lord. Amen.

GLORIA sung by Sue St Joseph

COLLECT

Almighty and eternal God,

ruler of heaven and earth;

mercifully hear the prayers of your people,

and grant your peace to our times;

through Jesus Christ, our Lord,

who lives and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, world without end. Amen

PROCLAIMING & RECEIVING GOD’S WORD

FIRST READING: ISAIAH 62:1-5 read by Annette Beagrie

The Vindication and Salvation of Zion

For 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.

Bible Verses Wallpapers Free Download - Isaiah 62 Vs 1 - HD Wallpaper

The 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.
You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord,
and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
You 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.
For 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.

SILENCE

SECOND READING 1 CORINTHIANS 12:1-11 read by Kay Solaja

Spiritual Gifts

Now concerning spiritual gifts, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.  You know that when you were pagans, you were enticed and led astray to idols that could not speak. Therefore, 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. Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone.  

1 Corinthians 12:1-11 Spiritual Gifts - Light of Christ Church

To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.  To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to 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.  All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses.

GRADUAL HYMN

GOSPEL READING John 2:1-11 read by Rev Steven Ballard

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to St John chapter 2 beginning at verse 1

Glory to Christ our Saviour

The Wedding at Cana

On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.  Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding.  When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come.”  His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons.  Jesus said to them, “Fill the jars with water.” And they filled them up to the brim.  He said to them, “Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward.” So, they took it. 

The Wedding at Cana and the miracle of water into wine - Sacred Heart Hook  Catholic Church

When 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, “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.”  Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.

Give thanks to the Lord for his glorious Gospel

Praise to Christ our Lord.

SERMON

Don't Believe In Superstitions? Good Luck With That! - Long Island Weekly

Are you superstitious? How many of you would walk under a ladder- how many of you won’t because you believe it would bring bad luck? How many of you would put up an umbrella in the house-how many wouldn’t because it might bring bad luck? Do you believe that if you blow out all of the candles on your birthday cake with the first breath you will get whatever you wish for? Maybe before pulling a wishbone, you have made a wish, then take hold of each end of the bone and pull it until it separates, believing that the person with the longer end gets his or her wish.

Maybe you get happy when you have an itchy palm for it means money will come your way. Maybe you think if your ears are itching or burning, someone is talking about you. How many of you would throw salt over your shoulder to stop bad luck coming? How many of you would touch wood to ward off any danger or harm happening?

I read recently if a single woman sleeps with a piece of wedding cake under her pillow, she will dream of her future husband- wow that’s a new one for me must give it a whirl!!! But in terms of weddings, you hear people say it’s unlucky for the groom to see the bride in her wedding dress before the ceremony. How many of you brides wore something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue for good luck? As a nation we are probably more superstitious than we think.

In Israel they had all sorts of superstitions, including those about marriage. Brides were to wear something blue for good luck. Indeed, Brides in ancient Israel wore blue ribbons on the borders of their fringed robes to denote modesty, fidelity, and love–ideals still are associated with that colour. The Jews believed too that if you ran out of wine at a wedding then the marriage was doomed to fail.

Ancient Jewish Wedding Customs and Yeshua's Second Coming | Messianic Bible

Weddings were much more than the ceremony. They were about feasting and celebrating in style. Weddings to the Jews were the high moments of life, to which they attached a lot of importance. Weddings were shared by the entire community. The typical wedding feast could last up to seven days. That sounds strange to our modern way of thinking, but this offered a bright interlude in an otherwise dreary existence. The ceremony would begin on Tuesday at midnight. After the wedding the father of the bride would take his daughter to every house so that everyone might congratulate her. It was a community experience. Weddings were a time of joy and great partying.

Journeying with Jesus — Resource Global

To get the party swinging, wine was a necessary ingredient! To run out of wine was a more serious matter in first-century Palestine than it would be in our culture, because a wedding was a unique social occasion. For a family to be inadequately prepared was almost unthinkable. This glitch of no wine at the wedding in Cana is major. In a small town, people will talk about this one for years. Upon hearing the problem, Mary says to Jesus: “Do something.” To which Jesus replies : “Woman, of what concern is this to you or me?” Followed by: “Besides, my time has not yet come.” Mary, making it her concern, points to her son and says to the waiters: “Do whatever he tells you to do.”

So, what does Jesus do? John says that near Jesus were six stone jars, each one large enough to hold 20-30 gallons. Jesus instructs the waiters to fill each jar to the rim with water. Then he says: “Draw off a flask and take it to the caterer.” The caterer sniffs the wine, rolls it over his tongue, hands the flask back to the waiter, walks over to the groom and whispers: “May I speak to you for a moment?”  When the two of them are out of earshot, the caterer says: “Are you mad? Everybody knows you serve the best wine first. Then, when things get rolling, when folks won’t be able to tell the difference, that’s when you bring out the jugs with the screw-on caps. But this beats anything I’ve ever seen. For some reason, you’ve saved the best for last.” 

12 December ~ 6 Stone Jars of Water turned into wine! - West Church Bangor

An amazing miracle that carries many layers of meaning! Well, on a very elemental level, it’s about a party saved. But moving to a slightly higher level, this story might serve as an allegory about many topics, one of which is marriage itself. What happens at Cana happens sooner or later in every marriage, the wine runs out. What do I mean by that? The typical marriage starts off with a feast of joy and enthusiasm. The couple are surrounded by friends and well- wishers who shower them with gifts. Full of hopes and dreams, they set off on their honeymoon. The wine is flowing freely.

They come back from the honeymoon and the real business begins- setting up a home as a married couple and learning to live with one another. At first, they find great joy in each other’s company. They are convinced that their love was preordained in heaven and meant to last for eternity. The wine is still flowing.

But when human beings are very close to one another problems inevitably occur. Tensions arise. They discover that they did not marry an angel after all, but a human being wounded by sin and selfishness. They are surprised by the poverty they discover in one another. The honeymoon is over. The wine has run out. All that is left is the ‘water of their meagre resources’

LEAVES OF GRACE: When Your Wine Runs Out

Much the same happens in our careers, professions and even in vocations, such as priesthood. The wine runs out there too. The first joy, enthusiasm and idealism ebb. When the wine gives out…the wine of confidence, the wine of attention or solidarity, the wine of daily tenderness, the wine of the ability to share, the wine of hope and the wine of imagining a life of justice and peace for all- then all that remains is the water of routine, dullness and possibly disillusionment.

When the water of routine and disillusionment is in the marriage, there is a temptation to run with the wine. The person feels that there is nothing in it for me any longer, so I’m bailing out! While this attitude sounds reasonable and logical, it can also imply selfishness. Selfishness in the sense that the person has taken all they can from the other, and now looks elsewhere for wine that flows without effort or pain. There is no attempt to resurrect their marriage- it involves too much work and effort.

Don't Lose Heart - Nancy Manos

So, what can a couple do, when they first experience the water of routine and disillusionment in marriage? They must acknowledge that the first wine has run out. For the moment they will have to do with water- but not to panic or despair when that happens. They must hold on. They must resist the temptation to abandon the relationship and lose themselves in their career or hectic social life. They must not lose heart. What they have to do is work on their relationship through which they can grow as human beings and discover the real meaning of love. The crisis can become an opportunity and here is the surprising thing- it is necessary that the first wine runs out. Otherwise, the new wine can’t come in. First love, however romantically beautiful it is, cannot last. It is bound to wear out. Indeed, this romantic love has to wear out for a deeper love to emerge.

The Wedding at Cana and the miracle of water into wine - Sacred Heart Hook  Catholic Church

For this deeper love, new wine to come, help may be required and given. When the wine runs out at the wedding it was the mother of Jesus who said-they have no more wine’ She noticed and she cared. It is a blessing when others are capable of realizing-They’ve run out of wine’ and manage to say so without doing harm or damage. So, listen to the voice of God that comes from outside yourselves, the voice that can bring new ideas, new possibilities, the voice that can bring this deeper love. This deeper love consists in putting the other person before yourself-indeed you have to an extent forget about self and find joy in loving rather than in being loved.

Watch Love | Netflix

Love is a difficult adventure. The new wine is not meant for just married couples but for everyone. The new wine cannot be poured into old wineskins. This means we have to change. Christ has to touch our hearts and help us all love unselfishly. For those who seek his help, and put their faith and trust in him, the miracle of Cana still happens- the water of selfishness is changed into the wine of true love, and wonderful as the old wine is the new is so much better.

As Shakespeare said: Love is not love, which alters when it alteration finds, or bends with the remover to remove: O no! it is an ever-fixed mark that looks on tempests and is never shaken. Such is God’s love for us. His love is fixed and steadfast. It is an unfailing love. It is this unshakeable love that we are invited to seek in our relationships whether we are married or not. We are to seek this love that mirrors God’s love. It is a love that is unselfish; it is a love that perseveres; it is a love that is true and faithful, no matter what challenges and difficulties come our way. Such love is the true hallmark of all relationships. This love requires work, determination, perseverance, compromise and wholehearted selfless commitment, then the wine, so to speak, will flow freely and well in all our relationships. Amen.

THE CREED

Christ The Savior Lutheran Church

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,

God from God,

Light from Light,

true God from true God,

begotten, not made,

of one substance with the Father.

Through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation

he came down from heaven;

by the power of the Holy Spirit

he became incarnate of 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.

With the Father and the Son,

he is worshipped and glorified.

He 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.

Prayer Requests – Baildon Methodist Church

PRAYERS

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

Lord Jesus you fulfil our desires beyond our imagining

Transform our failures and disappointments

into new opportunities for your kingdom

revive your church in its mission

to declare your love.

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

Lord Jesus when provisions are low

you open up a new generosity.

Teach us to share our riches and resources.

Give to leaders of nations renewed vision.

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

The Gifts of Generosity

Lord Jesus you shared in the joy of a wedding.

Bless all you are married

and those preparing for marriage

May each find in the other strength,

companionship and delight.

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

New Wine, New Wineskin | Bible photos, Wine, The nativity story

Lord Jesus you did not pour

new wine into old wineskins,

Help us to be discerning to know

when we are falling into the danger

of putting new ways of working and communicating

into the old ways methods and structures.

Help us to embrace change

that furthers and extends your kingdom.

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

Lord Jesus you can take the difficulties we have

and transform them into opportunities.

You can take our crisis in life

and bring new growth.

Open our hearts to your creative love at work in us.

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

Pastoral Care Team - Welcome to St Cuthbert's Church, Croxteth Park

Lord Jesus you responded to need

wherever you found it

bring your transforming love to bear on all

who feel exhausted

or drained in their suffering.

In the quiet we lift to you people known to us.

May we rest in you

and experience your presence,

strength, healing and peace.

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

Lord Jesus on the third day you rose for our salvation

Gather to yourself all who have died in faith

And bring us in time to share with them

in the wedding banquet of your kingdom.

With you O Lord is the well of life

Fill us to the brim

How to Embrace a New Dream … and Let Go of the Old One

Lord Jesus you are ready to offer new opportunities,

fresh challenges and a rich and deeper faith.

Help us to let go of the old wineskins

and embrace the new wineskins

and enjoy the rich new wine of joy, peace and love

Merciful Father accept these prayers for the sake of your Son,

our Saviour Jesus Christ who taught us to pray together

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.

Do not bring us

to the time of trial+

but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power

and the glory are yours,

now and forever. Amen.

Description: Description: Description: Description: Elevation Worship - The Blessing (Lyrics) ft. Kari Jobe & Cody ...

BLESSING

Christ the Son of God gladden your hearts with the good news of his kingdom; and the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, be among you and remain with you always. Amen.

HYMN

DISMISSAL

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord

In the name of Christ. Amen

11 Responses

  1. I just wondered if any of one on your church has Learning difficulties .

    They may find Prospects across Scotland .org.uk

    Helpful. There are zoom activities .
    Fortnightly and meet new friends all over Scotland in a Safeguarded place on zoom.

    Tho having our first Carol service since Covid started on Saturday on Bridge of Allan but will be on live via the Facebook
    Page Prospects across Scotland. 2:30 this Saturday the 4 th December .

    I am in another church in Dumfries.

    I
    Grew up in Ayr Episcopal church. ..as a child..

    The website is Prospects across Scotland .org.uk.

    If you know of anyone in your church
    with Learning difficulties
    They or their Carer could contact Ivy Blair for links
    and support the page on Facebook .
    And Pray for this work.

    I had a. Small group at home.
    and we later
    joined Prospects across Scotland officially aswell.
    and became part of the. Ist Zoom group .
    And it’s called Prescious Gems
    it’s is on Monthly
    .
    Most groups are held in churches all over Scotland.

    we started beginning of the Covid
    So been on. Zoom since. 2020.

    On various activities
    Music.etc.

    Anyway I just wondered if. Anyone in your church knew about Prospects.
    Or anyone with Learning difficulties.and there going to do more training in 2020. Re Autism aswell.

    Etc for churches to educate. Accessible ways to help churches to
    be inclusive
    for people with Learning difficulties .

  2. The prospect of Gordon or I getting to church to worship seems highly unlikely.
    On line we see and hear fellow worshipers and that is as near public worship as possible for us.
    I thank Janice and all who prepare on line worship.

    If we encounter any of our “church” friends outside , that is a total joy.
    I met with Heather at the wetlands where she serves.
    That was after nearly two years.

    Love to all at St John’s from Joan

  3. Thank you Janice for an excellent newsletter and virtual service. It is amazing that COVID came also just as social media blossomed (or not so amazing). in 2004, I was involved in the design and dedication of a memorial to the Royal Auxiliary Air Force at the National Memoriail Arboretum in Staffordshire, At the foot of the facing panel, I added the words `And they shall rise up with wings as eagles’ Memories came flooding back

  4. Hi Janice,

    Sorry to see the bruises on your face from the dental work. I hope you are not in too much pain. Enjoyed the Sunday service. I watched the recording.

  5. Finally found how to access St John’s online and thoroughly enjoyed it particularly your thought provoking sermon with lots of background information Thank you for looking after us in the pandemic Keep well Love Rosie and Terry

  6. I welcome this sermon and indeed the sermon I had best valued was one when the preacher ended his sermon :

    ” Do not have any expectations of me and I will not have any expectations of you”

    Welcome words to any members of a clergy family!
    Joan x

  7. Dear Janice,
    I’m ashamed to say that I’ve only just discovered the St John’s web site!! Thank you for all that you are doing and lovely images which give food for thought. I saw you on zoom at the retreat last week but then you disappeared – I hope you enjoyed it. On Sundays I’ve been watching the SEC eucharists on YouTube usually with lovely organ music.
    Blessings and love from Ann

  8. Hi Janice,
    I haven’t been coming to church because I am shielding my self as well as shielding my two very elderly parents, ( Mum is 94 years years old this December and Dad is 96 years old this coming March ) they are my main reason for not coming to church, but I get too come to our church on line of which I am greatly pleased, thank you for that wonderful service this morning God bless.

  9. We pray for Janice and hold her before His healing power.

    Thank Janice that we can worship on line , because for us at home “God does not live in houses made with hands” but on the airwaves

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