Lections: Acts 3:12-19; Psalm 4; Luke 24:36b-48
Morning Prayer/BAS - Officiant: Rev’d Lynn Courage, Homilist: Archdeacon David Burrows, Readers: Victoria Larkin
Hymns: 516 vs. 1 & 2; 19B; 377 vs. 1 & 5; 217 vs. 1 & 4
Table of Contents
Ministry & Mission at the Ascension
- Sunday Worship at the Ascension (Reminders):
- Live Streamed Services: If you are interested in viewing Sunday service, you can do so by logging in to the new church website ascensionnl.ca, and go to the Social Media tab. Once there, click on the Facebook tab (please note you do not have to have a Facebook account to view the service). This will link you directly with the service once it has begun on Sunday.
- Home Again Furniture Bank - Heads Without Beds Campaign: I hope and pray you are all well even as the world continues to adjust to the realities of COVID19 among us. This year, in thanksgiving for my birthday, and in support of Home Again Furniture Bank, I will be sleeping on the floor for their Heads without Beds Campaign. If you would like to make a donation to support this essential ministry and enable families to create homes, I would be so honoured. Home Again enables families in the Northeast Avalon Region to receive beds, dressers, tables, chairs, all sorts of furniture, and in the process, eliminate furniture poverty, and assist the community in eradicating poverty. On April 23, I will be sleeping on the floor so as to continue to advocate for the great work of Home Again and provide families with much needed support. Please, consider making a donation to help! The website link is below. Thanks for your time to read and consider! canadahelps.org/en/charities/parish-of-the-ascension-mount-pearl/p2p/heads-without-beds/team/anglican-east-nl-team/member/david-burrows/
- Pandemic Appeal: Since January 1, 2021, we have raised only $640 for our Pandemic Appeal. We encourage parishioners to continue to support our Parish in this effort by donating to this cause. Thank you to all who have donated thus far
- CLB Lunch Take-Out: Each week the CLB offers take out lunch specials on Friday. If you are interested in purchasing for your home or office group, please call 722-1737 to pre-order. Orders must be received by Thursday at 11 a.m. Free delivery for orders of 5 or more dinners.
- Services During the Week:
- Sunday, April 25 (Easter IV): 11:00am, Family Service WWB ascensionnl.ca
Here we are passing the midway of April, and for those of us in parts of Newfoundland and Labrador, after a few weeks of dreary, wet, challenging weather. For me, the reality of pandemic awareness, the struggles of adapting to ever-changing aspects of work and society, combined with a lack of sun and limited outside physical activity has dulled my Easter celebrating.
In my interactions with others this week, I have listened to those that are struggling. Some persons that have been facing the weight of challenges in their lives seem to be buckling under the combinations of stress and anxiety, poor weather, and loss of focus because this pandemic seems unending.
I am reminded that even in the midst of this, the Easter call as Christians is to celebrate the resurrection and to live a life in response to the gift of the resurrection. In some ways, the heaviness of this past time seems to have clouded many persons’ expressions of hope, love, and healing. Perhaps all of that has gotten lost in the days of unending fog?
Into this reality, I find that I am returning to age-old children’s stories, to make sense of the reality of our situation. For me, a favourite is The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. The themes of betrayal, redemption, hope, hopelessness, anticipation, and love are present in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe in particular. It is a children’s story, and in particular, an allegorical narrative of the Christian worldview, yes, nonetheless, the images and themes are helpful for us all, I believe.
In particular, I share with you two images: early in the story, the world of Narnia is locked in the evil of the White Witch, so that it is “always winter, never Christmas.” When I contemplate parts of this pandemic we are living through, I can’t help but be reminded of the imagery of waiting every day amid storm and snow, wind and cold, with no possibility of a Christmas celebration. As I looked out in the fog this week, I did wonder whether there was a ‘fog witch’ as much as Narnia had a White Witch.
The second is the persons of the White Witch and Aslan. The White Witch in the story turned those who disagreed with her into stone. So, in the courtyard of the Royal Castle, there were numerous stone statues of her victims.
When the Jesus figure (Aslan) is sacrificed willingly for the redemption of a child, the stone table of sacrifice is cracked in two. The world of Narnia is reminded of the deeper magic from before the beginning of the world. This magic enables Aslan to be resurrected, as a larger, more powerful lion, that commands all creation, offers healing and redemption to all those that have suffered and died.
Susan and Lucy encounter the resurrected lion, and they join him as he bounds over the castle walls and breathes on each of the stone statues restoring them to life.
In the end, this is a story. For me, since childhood, it has been forever real. For me, the Holy One restores our lives when we are lost and hurting, turns our winters into Christmases, and enables our stone hearts and lives to experience joy, wonder, hope, and love.
This is what I hope for when I look through fog and cloud when I am whipped around by wind and rain.
Let us in our own ways, and through our journeys with the Holy One and others, have our seasons transformed, and our hearts melted. It is the time and the place for love, redemption, hope, and wonder.
Even in a pandemic.
Prayers of the People
Christ, the stone which the builders rejected, God has made the cornerstone of a new community. In that name by which we are founded, let us draw near in confidence, saying:
Lord Have Mercy
The risen Christ opened the minds of the disciples to understand the scriptures. May the church find in the scriptures healing, mission, and good news for all. For this, let us pray to the Lord.
Lord Have Mercy
Christ our cornerstone intercedes for us before God. Let us and all in authority heed God’s call for justice in the church, in our community, and in the nation. We pray, for the parishes of Forteau and Fortune/Lamaline, our brothers and sisters in Ireland, for Samuel our Bishop and all clergy and lay ministries. For this, let us pray to the Lord.
Lord Have Mercy
We are saved by a God who is light, in whom there is no darkness at all. Let us beg for God’s light in those places which seem darkest. Let us ask that God enlighten all who inflict darkness on others. Let us ask that God shine on those who are victims of evil. For this, let us pray to the Lord.
Lord Have Mercy
In the power of Christ’s name we are healed. Let us recall all who need healing, especially those on the Ascension Prayer Cycle and all in the healing professions. For this, let us pray to the Lord.
Lord Have Mercy
For ourselves in this assembly, especially all who are impacted by the Pandemic, those undergoing testing, those who received positive results, those in isolation, especially those living on the West Coast of Newfoundland, all believing in our every deed the good news, that after a year of turmoil and strife, the world may be free of this virus. For this, let us pray to the Lord.
Lord Have Mercy
We pray for those who have died, especially Eric Taylor, that in passing beyond the cares of this world they may no longer be in want for any good thing. For this, let us pray to the Lord.
Lord Have Mercy
Loving God, you have glorified your son Jesus and given him the name by which we are saved. Give us the courage to act in his name. Accept our praise, offered in his name, for we offer this prayer through and with and in Jesus, your son and our saviour. Amen
Ascension Prayer Cycle: Aden, Amelia, Ann, Annie, Aubrey, Audrey, Barbara, Baxter, Bob, Brenda, Brian, Brittany, Brandon, Callum, Carl, Cathy, Christina, Cindy, Claire, Clarence, David, Debra, Delilah, Dennis, Derrick, Don, Donna, Doreen, Dot, Doug, Dulcie, Ed, Edgar, Elaine, Emily, Erin, Evelyn, Finnley, Frederick, Fred, Frank, Flo, Garrett, George, Gerry, Glenda, Gordon, Harry, Hilda, Ike, Ina, Ingrid, Ira, Jack, Jason, Jennifer, Jenny, Jim, John, Josephine, Joan, Judy, Junior, Kent, Kevin, Kim, Laura, Leo, Leonie, Lindsay, Lori, Louise, Madeline, Marie, Marsha, Mark, Marion, Maurice, Maxine, Maxwell, Melissa, Melvin, Michelle, Mike, Moana, Nancy, Pam, Phyllis, Rachel, Randell, Rodney, Roland, Ruby, Ruth, Rita, Sean, Shirley, Stephen, Susan, Tina, Todd, Tom, Valerie, Vera, Victoria and Wayne
Prayer During the Pandemic
God of compassion,
be close to those who are ill, afraid or in isolation.
In their loneliness, be their consolation;
in their anxiety, be their hope;
in their darkness, be their light;
through him who suffered alone on the cross,
but reigns with you in glory,
Jesus Christ our Lord.
your Son made himself known to his disciples
in the breaking of bread.
Open the eyes of our faith,
that we may see him in his redeeming work,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. AMEN
A Reading from the Book of Acts
Peter addressed the people, "You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we had made this man walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our ancestors has glorified his servant Jesus, whom you handed over and rejected in the presence of Pilate, though he had decided to release him. But you rejected the Holy and Righteous One and asked to have a murderer given to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And by faith in his name, his name itself has made this man strong, whom you see and know; and the faith that is through Jesus has given him this perfect health in the presence of all of you. And now, friends, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. In this way God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, that his Messiah would suffer. Repent therefore, and turn to God so that your sins may be wiped out." ACTS 3:12-19
Reader: The Word of the Lord
People: Thanks be to God
Answer me when I call, O God, defender of my cause;
you set me free when I am hard-pressed; have mercy on me and hear my prayer.
"You mortals, how long will you dishonour my glory;
how long will you worship dumb idols and run after false gods?"
Know that the Lord does wonders for the faithful;
when I call upon the Lord, he will hear me.
Tremble, then, and do not sin;
speak to your heart in silence upon your bed.
Offer the appointed sacrifices
and put your trust in the Lord.
Many are saying, "Oh, that we might see better times!"
Lift up the light of your countenance upon us, O Lord.
You have put gladness in my heart,
more than when grain and wine and oil increase.
I lie down in peace; at once I fall asleep;
for only you, Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Faithful defender, do not let our hearts be troubled, but fill us with such confidence and joy that we may sleep in peace and rise in your light; through Jesus Christ our Saviour. PSALM 4
Reader: The Lord be with you
People: And also with you
The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to Luke
People: Glory to, you Lord Jesus Christ
Jesus himself stood among the disciples and said to them, "Peace be with you." They were startled and terrified, and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, "Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see; for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have." And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering, he said to them, "Have you anything here to eat?" They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence. Then he said to them, "These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you - that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled." Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things." LUKE 24:36B-48
Reader: The Gospel of Christ
People: Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ
Prayer over the Gifts
Creator of all,
you wash away our sins in water,
you give us new birth by the Spirit,
and redeem us in the blood of Christ.
As we celebrate the resurrection,
renew your gift of life within us.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ the risen Lord. AMEN
Prayer after Communion
Author of life divine,
in the breaking of bread we know the risen Lord.
Feed us always in these mysteries,
that we may show your glory to all the world.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN
Anglian Church of Canada One Licence #733242-A Book of Alternative Services The Taizé Community Book of Common Praise GIA Publications Wee Worship Book The Iona Community CCLI License # 1733318Resources for Chimes from the above sources