THE THIRD SUNDAY AFTER TRINITY
“Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me.”
1 Praise, my soul, the King of heaven;
to his feet your tribute bring.
Ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven,
evermore his praises sing.
Praise the everlasting King!
2 Praise him for his grace and favour
to his people in distress.
Praise him, still the same as ever,
slow to chide, and swift to bless.
Glorious in his faithfulness!
3 Fatherlike he tends and spares us;
well our feeble frame he knows.
In his hand he gently bears us,
rescues us from all our foes.
Widely yet his mercy flows!
4 Angels, help us to adore him;
you behold him face to face.
Sun and moon, bow down before him,
dwellers all in time and space.
Praise with us the God of grace!
The collect for the THIRD SUNDAY AFTER TRINITY
Almighty God, you have broken the tyranny of sin and have sent the Spirit of your Son into our hearts whereby we call you Father: give us grace to dedicate our freedom to your service, that we and all creation may be brought to the glorious liberty of the children of God; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.. Amen.
This week’s Gospel reading comes at an appropriate time as we prepare to welcome people back into our church buildings. “There are no strangers here, only friends whom we have not met”. This is an inspiring principle that may be easy to embrace when we are in church but possibly more of a challenge in our everyday life. Yet it is through our encounters with other people, whether we are giving or receiving the welcoming smile or act of kindness, that the liberating presence of God is revealed. Sometimes it is easy to forget that we are called to receive as well as to give!
Gospel: Matthew 10:40-42
Jesus said, “Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet's reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple-- truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.”
The Hospitality of Abraham who unknowingly welcomed angels into his home.
In popular culture a Jeremiah is a person who never stops complaining or who is a doom monger. This is not the Jeremiah of our OT reading. This Jeremiah is a prophet of peace. Deep rooted peace is a gift we too can enjoy and share with others.
A reading from Jeremiah 28: 5-9
The prophet Jeremiah spoke to the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests and all the people who were standing in the house of the Lord; and the prophet Jeremiah said, “Amen! May the Lord do so; may the Lord fulfill the words that you have prophesied, and bring back to this place from Babylon the vessels of the house of the Lord, and all the exiles. But listen now to this word that I speak in your hearing and in the hearing of all the people. The prophets who preceded you and me from ancient times prophesied war, famine, and pestilence against many countries and great kingdoms. As for the prophet who prophesies peace, when the word of that prophet comes true, then it will be known that the Lord has truly sent the prophet.”
Your love, O Lord, for ever will I sing; from age to age my mouth will proclaim your faithfulness.
For I am persuaded that your love is established for ever; you have set your faithfulness firmly in the heavens.
"I have made a covenant with my chosen one; I have sworn an oath to David my servant:
'I will establish your line for ever, and preserve your throne for all generations.'"
Happy are the people who know the festal shout! they walk, O Lord, in the light of your presence. They rejoice daily in your Name; they are jubilant in your righteousness.
For you are the glory of their strength, and by your favour our might is exalted.
Truly, the Lord is our ruler; the Holy One of Israel is our King.
The reference to slavery in the epistle is a powerful one for us in the current climate but it would have been so too when Paul was writing: he was addressing people who had been or were still slaves. Paul wanted to get the message home that what he was saying was not just abstract thought but a reality that would impact the way we lead our everyday lives! As “slaves of righteousness” we can experience the gift of true freedom bestowed upon us by a loving God and Heavenly Father.
Do not let sin exercise dominion in your mortal bodies, to make you obey their passions. No longer present your members to sin as instruments of wickedness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and present your members to God as instruments of righteousness. For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.
What then? Should we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God that you, having once been slaves of sin, have become obedient from the heart to the form of teaching to which you were entrusted, and that you, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. I am speaking in human terms because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to greater and greater iniquity, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness for sanctification.
When you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. So what advantage did you then get from the things of which you now are ashamed? The end of those things is death. But now that you have been freed from sin and enslaved to God, the advantage you get is sanctification. The end is eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord..
Monday, 29th June is the feast day of St. Peter and St. Paul, the first leaders of the Church. St. Petertide is a time when the ordination of new priests to the ministry takes place.
St. Peter and St. Paul El Greco.
Heavenly Father, we thank you for the leaders of the Church who, with the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, have down the ages guided and directed it as it has grown and spread across the world. We pray for all who are undergoing training for the ministry and all who will be ordained this year. We pray too for all who are involved in their training, especially at this time when the Church is being called to adapt to new ways of being.
We pray for our local parish churches as services resume in July. May our churches be welcoming, despite the continued restrictions, and may our worship be filled with the Spirit.
We continue to pray for all whose lives have been affected by the pandemic, whether through poor health, bereavement, unemployment, business anxieties or loneliness.
We pray for policy makers throughout the world as they seek to discover what the post virus world will be like and to guide its emergence from the lockdown.
We pray for our own country that peace and harmony may prevail and injustices addressed.
We pray for Keith, Ruth, George and Eileen that they may be sustained by the comforting presence of the Holy Spirit.
We pray that each day we may reflect the love of Christ in our lives and never fail to see the image of Christ in those that we encounter along the way.Lord in your mercy, Hear our prayer.