Readings and Prayers for the Sunday after Ascension

16th May Sunday after Ascension Day

The Collect:  Eternal God, the King of Glory, you have exalted your only Son with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven. Leave us not comfortless, but send your Holy Spirit to strengthen us and exalt us to the place where Christ is gone before, and where with you and the Holy Spirit He is worshipped and glorified, now and for ever. All: Amen

The Epistle is written in the 15th verse of the 1st chapter of the Acts of the Holy Apostles.

In those days Peter stood up among the believers (together the crowd numbered about one hundred and twenty) and said, “Friends, the scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit through David foretold concerning Judas, who became a guide for those who arrested Jesus ~ for he was numbered among us and was allotted his share in this ministry.” So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day when He was taken up from us ~ one of these must become a witness with us to His resurrection.” So they proposed two, Joseph called Barsabbas, who was also known as Justus, and Matthias. Then they prayed and said, “Lord, you know everyone’s heart. Show us which one of these two you have chosen to take the place in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.” And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias; and he was added to the eleven apostles.

This is the Word of the Lord:  All: Thanks be to God

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to St. Luke:  All: Glory to You, O Lord

 He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.” Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.  He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.  You are witnesses of these things.  I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.” When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them.  While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven. Then they worshiped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy.  And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God.

This is the Gospel of the Lord:  All: Praise to You, O Christ

 

Prayers

Everlasting God Your son Jesus’ Ascension into heaven marked the culmination of the Paschal Mystery. May we live life in the same way as his disciples did at that time, knowing no sense of abandonment but patiently awaiting the promised gift of the Holy Spirit. We come to you in the greatness of your love and lift up our hearts in prayer and praise.Help us to pray simply and sincerely, unselfishly and gratefully, remembering the needs of others as well as our own, and giving thanks always for everything in the name of Christ our Lord                                                                                                                         Lord in your mercy: Hear our prayer.

Creator God, help the people of your world make the best use of science and technology in order to achieve a better life on this planet. Protect people of those countries that are suffering from lack of vaccines and medical equipment to save millions of lives. Guide those in power to work for the day when no-one is exploited and under paid for their labour just so that we can enjoy cheap luxury goods at their expense.   Lord in your mercy: Hear our prayer

God our Father, as we pray for your blessing to rest upon this Church. We are grateful for its worship and fellowship and long for the day when we will be able to welcome our children back to learn more of your love. Help us to see the kind of church you need today. May we not lose sight of the many and varied needs of this community. Hold up before us the vision of your kingdom, a kingdom of justice and mercy, truth and compassion. Help us to grasp the meaning of the gospel which you have entrusted to us and give us grace to live by it.            Lord in your mercy, Hear our prayer

Father God your Son remained with his disciples after his resurrection, teaching them to love all people as neighbours. Thank you for our families, friends and fellow Christians and for the people with whom we work or share our daily lives. We pray for those who are lonely, those isolated because of age or ill-health, and those who find it difficult to make friends or be accepted. We pray those known to us and for all who are unwell that they may be aware of your comforting presence and know that in your hands they are safe and loved.                              Lord in your mercy: Hear our prayer.

Heavenly Father, we pray for those whose hearts have been saddened by the death of someone close and dear to them, for members of our families who have died and whose anniversary we recall. Help us to experience the comfort of the Holy Spirit within us, and the fellowship of the church family around us until we are reunited once more in your heavenly kingdom. We pray for families throughout the world who have lost loved ones this week both through tragic events and through natural causes. May they also experience the comfort of the Holy Spirit within them and the love and fellowship of the Church Family around them.                   Lord in your mercy, Hear our prayer

Father we pray that as we come before your table today that our communion is not mere routine but a precious time of fellowship with Jesus Christ as we thankfully remember his redeeming love and meet with him as our living Lord. May we come to your table with joyful and expectant hearts and go out afterwards nourished and strengthened in spirit to serve you in the world, to the glory of your name.                                                                            Merciful Father accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ, Amen