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Weekly Readings and Prayers

24th September 2023 Sixteenth Sunday after Trinity

 

Collect 
O Lord, we beseech you mercifully to hear the prayers of your people who call upon you; and grant that they may both perceive and know what things they ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to fulfil them; 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

 

First Reading  Jonah 3. 10-end of 4
When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil ways, God changed his mind about the calamity that he had said he would bring upon them; and he did not do it. But this was very displeasing to Jonah, and he became angry. He prayed to the Lord and said, ‘O Lord! Is not this what I said while I was still in my own country? That is why I fled to Tarshish at the beginning; for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and ready to relent from punishing. And now, O Lord, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live.’ And the Lord said, ‘Is it right for you to be angry?’ Then Jonah went out of the city and sat down east of the city, and made a booth for himself there. He sat under it in the shade, waiting to see what would become of the city. The Lord God appointed a bush, and made it come up over Jonah, to give shade over his head, to save him from his discomfort; so Jonah was very happy about the bush. But when dawn came up the next day, God appointed a worm that attacked the bush, so that it withered. When the sun rose, God prepared a sultry east wind, and the sun beat down on the head of Jonah so that he was faint and asked that he might die. He said, ‘It is better for me to die than to live.’ But God said to Jonah, ‘Is it right for you to be angry about the bush?’ And he said, ‘Yes, angry enough to die.’ Then the Lord said, ‘You are concerned about the bush, for which you did not labour and which you did not grow; it came into being in a night and perished in a night. And should I not be concerned about Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who do not know their right hand from their left, and also many animals?’

Psalm 145. 1–8
1 I will exalt you, O God my King, : and bless your name for ever and ever.
2 Every day will I bless you : and praise your name for ever and ever.
3 Great is the Lord and highly to be praised; : his greatness is beyond all searching out.
4 One generation shall praise your works to another : and declare your mighty acts.
5 They shall speak of the majesty of your glory, : and I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.
6 They shall speak of the might of your marvellous acts, : and I will also tell of your greatness.
7 They shall pour forth the story of your abundant kindness : and joyfully sing of your righteousness.
8 The Lord is gracious and merciful, : long-suffering and of great goodness.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son : and to the Holy Spirit;
As it was in the beginning is now : and shall be for ever. Amen.

 

Second Reading  Philippians 1. 21–end
For to me, living is Christ and dying is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labour for me; and I do not know which I prefer. I am hard pressed between the two: my desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better; but to remain in the flesh is more necessary for you. Since I am convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with all of you for your progress and joy in faith, so that I may share abundantly in your boasting in Christ Jesus when I come to you again. Only, live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that, whether I come and see you or am absent and hear about you, I will know that you are standing firm in one spirit, striving side by side with one mind for the faith of the gospel, and are in no way intimidated by your opponents. For them this is evidence of their destruction, but of your salvation. And this is God’s doing. For he has graciously granted you the privilege not only of believing in Christ, but of suffering for him as well — since you are having the same struggle that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.

Gospel Matthew 20. 1–16
For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire labourers for his vineyard. After agreeing with the labourers for the usual daily wage, he sent them into his vineyard. When he went out about nine o’clock, he saw others standing idle in the market-place; and he said to them, “You also go into the vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.” So they went. When he went out again about noon and about three o’clock, he did the same. And about five o’clock he went out and found others standing around; and he said to them, “Why are you standing here idle all day?” They said to him, “Because no one has hired us.” He said to them, “You also go into the vineyard.” When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his manager, “Call the labourers and give them their pay, beginning with the last and then going to the first.” When those hired about five o’clock came, each of them received the usual daily wage. Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received the usual daily wage. And when they received it, they grumbled against the landowner, saying, “These last worked only one hour, and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the day and the scorching heat.” But he replied to one of them, “Friend, I am doing you no wrong; did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage? Take what belongs to you and go; I choose to give to this last the same as I give to you. Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or are you envious because I am generous?” So the last will be first, and the first will be last.’

Post Communion Prayer
Almighty God, you have taught us through your Son that love is the fulfilling of the law: grant that we may love you with our whole heart and our neighbours as ourselves; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Prayers for the week

We pray for those who live in Middle Hill, Northcroft Close and Northcroft Gardens

"The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy". (Psalm 126:3) 

 

Sunday 24th September
We give thanks for the privilege of welcoming The Revd Jens Mankel as Preacher at our 9.30am service this morning. We pray for Jens in his role as one of the Mission Enablers at the Diocese of Guildford. We pray with him for all our Diocesan staff and especially for Bishop Andrew and for our Bishop elect, the Ven Paul Davies. 

Monday 25th September
We give thanks for Jens Mankel's message to us yesterday. We pray that we may grow in confidence and trust as we continue to seek God's wisdom and will for our church community and for ourselves. 

Tuesday 26th September
We give thanks for all the external work which has recently been carried out on St Jude's Church. We thank God for those, both professionals and volunteers, who have contributed to getting the work done.  We pray for generous giving to cover the cost of the work and the vision and resources to see beyond what has been done to what still needs doing.

Wednesday 27th September
We give thanks for the different opportunities we have to gather in worship. We thank you for those who will be attending our Wednesday midweek service this morning. Thank you for the peace of that service and for the opportunity afterwards to enjoy fellowship together.

Thursday 28th September
As we come towards the close of another week, we give thanks to God for his continuing presence with us. We turn our thoughts and prayers to some of the many tragic and challenging situations across the world, remembering especially those who continue to die because of conflict, natural disaster, hunger and disease.
                          
Friday 29th September (Feast Day of St Michael and all Angels)
Everlasting God, you have ordained and constituted the ministries of angels and mortals in a wonderful order: grant that as your holy angels always serve you in heaven, so, at your command, they may help and defend us on earth; 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

Saturday 1st October
We pray for all our services tomorrow. We give thanks for the Revd Andrew Reed and for his sensitive and thoughtful leadership of our more informal worship. As we pray for Andrew we pray for all our partners in ministry across the Staines and Feltham Methodist Circuit including the Revd Dr  Kofi D. Tekyi-Ansah and the Revd Andy Watkins.  

                                                                                                                                                        

Heavenly Father, please accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen. 
 

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