In the interests of respecting the privacy of individuals, some notices from the  sheet are sometimes omitted from this on-line facility

The items below are to accompany the videos of the Sunday services to be found on the ‘videos’ page under ‘Media’. The service sheet each week is followed by the newsletter for that week, which includes readings and sermon in full.

May 9th                     Easter 6  

Welcome and Notices

HYMN – Son of God, eternal Saviour

‘As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.  If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love’              1 John 5. 9

The Lord be with you          Alleluia, Christ is risen

And also with you           He is risen indeed. Alleluia

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

The gospel calls us to turn away from sin and be faithful to Christ. As we offer ourselves to him in penitence and faith, we renew our confidence and trust in his mercy.

Lord God, we have sinned against you; we have done evil in your sight. We are sorry and repent. Have mercy on us according to your love. Wash away our wrongdoing and cleanse us from our sin. Renew a right spirit within us and restore us to the joy of your salvation, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

May the Father of all mercies cleanse us from our sins, and restore us in his image to the praise and glory of his name, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Collect for Easter 6

God our redeemer, you have delivered us from the power of darkness and brought us into the Kingdom of your Son: grant, that as by his death he has recalled us to life, so by his continual presence in us he may raise us to eternal joy; 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    Acts 10.44-48    Peggy Harvey

This is the word of the Lord Thanks be to God

HYMN  –   Now the green blade riseth

Second Reading    John 15.9-17    Marj Jenkin

This is the word of the Lord Thanks be to God

Sermon     Rev Jo Thomas

HYMN  –  My God, I love Thee

The Creed

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth.

 I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, Born of the Virgin Mary, Suffered under Pontius Pilate, Was crucified, died and was buried; He descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again; He ascended into heaven, He is seated at the right hand of the Father, And he will come to judge the living and the dead.

 I believe in the Holy Spirit, The holy catholic Church, The communion of saints, The forgiveness of sins, The resurrection of the body, And the life everlasting. Amen.

Prayers of Intercession     Rev Ian Lowell

The General Thanksgiving

Almighty God, Father of all mercies, We your unworthy servants Give you most humble and hearty thanks For all your goodness and loving kindness to us and to everyone. We bless you for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; But above all for your inestimable love In the redemption of the world through our Lord Jesus Christ, For the means of grace, and for the hope of glory. And we ask you to give us that due sense of all your mercies That our hearts may be unfeignedly thankful, And that we show your praises, not only with our lips but with our lives, By giving up ourselves to your service, And by walking before you In holiness and righteousness all our days; Through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom with you and the Holy Spirit, be all honour and glory, world without end. Amen.

 A short silence for our own personal prayers of thanksgiving

O Lord, our heavenly Father, almighty and everlasting God, you have safely brought us to the beginning of this day. Defend us in the same by your mighty power; and grant that this day we fall into no sin, neither run into any kind of danger, but that all our doings may be ordered by your governance, to do always what is right in your eyes; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

HYMN – Love’s redeeming work is done

God, who through the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ has given us the victory, give you joy and peace in your faith, and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit be with you all this Easter and always. Amen.

May 9th      Madron Heamoor Gulval        Easter 6

Welcome to our service today. We pray for the two couples whose banns we read at Gulval today, to be married there next month

The May magazine is still available at the back.

Madron Summer Fete on June 5th. Cakes and Plants plus new or nearly new items will be very welcome – you can bring them to church or the vicarage. Also volunteers to run games. It will be a one way outdoor affair like last year and with no refreshments (to avoid cross-contamination)

We pray for  the preservation of the Amazon Rainforest. 4,200 square miles were cut down last year.

Post Office scam. If you are advised of a delivery you’re not expecting, it’s almost certainly a scam. Amazon phone calls saying you have ordered something and ; if you don’t want it press one are also a scam.

Madron gates are going to be repaired by the Council. Also remedial work will begin soon on the churchyard wall. It will not cost us

Gulval AGM will be after the morning service on May 30th.

Collect for Easter 6

God our redeemer, you have delivered us from the power of darkness and brought us into the Kingdom of your Son: grant, that as by his death he has recalled us to life, so by his continual presence in us he may raise us to eternal joy; 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     Acts 10.44-48  

 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles. For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, “Surely no one can stand in the way of their being baptized with water. They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.” So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked Peter to stay with them for a few days.

Second reading     John 15.9-17

As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. 10If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete. 12“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father. 16You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. 17I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another.

Sermon notes – Rev Jo Thomas

O Lord, open our eyes to behold your presence, O Lord open our ears to hear your voice, Amen. I wonder if you remember the first time you experienced the Holy Spirit come upon you.I remember my late mother sharing how it was the most amazing experience of her life. We were in a Methodist chapel in Chippenham, and the call came to go forward for prayer. In retrospect, I now know my mother was struggling with my late father’s alcoholism at the time and he hadn’t started the 12 Steps at that stage. She explained how desperate she was.

My mother became a committed Christian, being baptised and confirmed in her seventies. My father also came to faith before he died.

In the passage from Acts we see a step change for all history. Suddenly gentiles are included in the extraordinary outpouring of the Holy Spirit on believers. Yes, the disciples had received this amazing gift, but now it was open to all people who heard the message of Jesus – the Gospel.

It would be understandable to be anxious or even fearful of praying for the Holy Spirit. Especially as we have seen so many extremes of human behaviour on television – namely from the Pentecostal movement (particularly in the 1980s and 90s) and from America too.

People might think that by approaching God in prayer, asking for the Holy Spirit to anoint them with power it could lead to outrageous behaviour. However, if you look at the fruits of the Holy Spirit, they are: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. …

Then quite why someone would behave in a bizarre way is questionable. Surely, self-control would mean we are operating peacefully not like a ‘charis-maniac’ .

Having been in some pretty extreme church gathering in my time, and trying to figure out what was going on, I am convinced that human emotions can be extreme. You only have to look at football crowds in jubilation, or the mosh pit of a large gathering at Glastonbury Festival when the crowds leap up and down in appreciation the music.

Just because the Holy Spirit rests on us, fills our hearts and begins to work in our lives, it doesn’t mean that we need to behave like our favourite team has scored, or that our favourite band is playing live. However, it might be a challenge to ask ourselves how we can show God how much we love him. Is it enough to just go to church or is there more?

The experience of receiving the blessing of the Holy Spirit is not all that God has in store for us. That is a gift. However, the key to a fruitful Christian life is to remain in God’s love. Our second reading today explains just that. “Remain in my Love.” The Lord says. Jesus goes on to say, “I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last.”

An experience in this life can be exhilarating. I have been watching my toddler granddaughter, on the swing and the slide and recognise the excitement she feels. But being filled with the Holy Spirit is not a transient moment of elation (although of course it can be a very beautiful moment of inspiration that does indeed move our emotions) being filled with the Holy Spirit enables us to live life as we are called to. Being filled with God’s love enables us to love others, we are able to abide in love and serve (even laying down our lives for another).My concern with some of the movements in the free church and indeed some traditional churches that can get wrapped up in the teachings, is that people treat God like an emotional high. I am sure many genuine Christians believe that by being released to leap about and show God a dramatic display of gesticulating worship that they are demonstrating their worship to God. However, Jesus in our passage today makes it clear. He says: “ If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love.  I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.  My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” So, it’s not just about receiving, but loving others. Serving – outworking our faith in this world amongst those who we encounter in life. The challenge is to be a disciple, a follower, not just a believer. Then we can experience the joy of giving. However, for some of us, we can be weary of giving. Being a spouse, parent, carer, server in the community can be draining – exhausting. We can be depleted of enthusiasm because it seems all we do is give and give, then give some more. In fact we can feel like we give into a bottomless pit.

These readings today are for those of us who feel overwhelmed by the challenge of loving. Maybe our hearts are raw and we’re feeling the pain of loss or grief. The Holy Spirit came yes as a burning flame, but he also rested on Jesus as a dove. These images help us to identify the nature of God’s Holy Spirit. If we approach Him in faith, seek Him through prayer, we can anticipate not only a gentleness but a purifying process that enables us to keep the greatest command – to love one another.

May 2nd    Celebration of the Countryside Service

Welcome and Notices

HYMN –  For the beauty of the earth

Almighty God, we have come to worship you, the Lord of all creation, to give you thanks and praise. Before the world came to be, you spoke and all things were created, the sun, the moon and the shining stars; the earth, the mountains, the hills and trees. All living things your hand has created, all witness to the wonderful things you have done.

CONFESSION

We are sorry, Lord, that we have not said thank you for all we enjoy outside. We have taken for granted the beauty and peace of where we live, we have not looked after your world, we have taken without giving back, we have hidden our faces from you, the Creator, and treated the world as ours. Please help us to be thankful and careful always. AMEN.

The declaration of forgiveness

Almighty God, who forgives all who truly repent, have mercy upon you, pardon and deliver you from all your sins, confirm and strengthen you in all goodness, and keep you in life eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.

Collect for Easter 5

Almighty God, through your Son Jesus Christ you have overcome death and opened to us the gate of everlasting life. Grant that by your grace you may put into our minds good desires, and give us help to put them into action; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

First Reading –   Acts 8.26-40

This is the word of the Lord

Thanks be to God

HYMN  – Jesus is Lord

Second reading – John 15.1-8

This is the word of the Lord

Thanks be to God

Sermon

HYMN – Like a mighty river flowing

WHAT CHRISTIANS BELIEVE

Do you believe and trust in God the Father, who made the world ?

I believe and trust in him.

 Do you believe and trust in his Son Jesus Christ, who redeemed mankind  ?

I believe and trust in him.

 Do you believe and trust in his Holy Spirit, who gives life to the people of God.

I believe and trust in him.

Prayers of intercession

A Prayer of Blessing for farmers and growers, thinking especially of those who have taken a hit due to loss of their markets currently

Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation For in your abundant love You have given us fertile land, rich soil, the seasons in their courses. You provide seed for sowing, water, light and warmth to bring forth the miracle of growth. You give us skill to work the land, to prepare and nourish it that it may be fruitful. Bless the farmers and gardeners of this land. Prosper the work of their hands that they may provide abundant food for your people to share.In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

A prayer for tourism

We thank you, Lord, that others are able to enjoy our countryside on holiday. Grant your blessing on the G7 summit, grant that all may travel and return safely. We pray that many local businesses will be boosted by tourism, and we pray for those who work to protect and enhance our landscape; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

HYMN – The King of Love my Shepherd is

A prayer about hope

We thank you, Lord, for the hope you set before us of a new heaven and a new earth, where the water of life flows and where trees fruit every month. Thank you for this vision of life beyond the life we know and strengthen this hope of life beyond life, and may it inspire our work and worship f you; through our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

Final Prayer

Help us to remember your goodness to us day by day, and to serve you and others with gratitude. Keep us from falling into sin or running into danger; guide us to do always what is right in your eyes; through Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.

 Blessing

May the Father who made you bless you

May the Son who saved you bless you

And May the Spirit who called you bless you. Amen.

HYMN –  Think of a world without any flowers (vv 1-2, 7-8)

Alleluia ! Christ is risen He is risen indeed. Alleluia

May 2nd      Madron Heamoor Gulval        Easter 5

Madron AGM elected Caroline Somers as churchwarden, but we have one vacancy for the other warden’s post. The outgoing wardens replaced Malcolm and Marilyn on the PCC. We have a vacancy for a PCC member for St Thomas’.

The May magazine is still available at the back.

Foodbank. Please do bring cleaning products and fruit juices, but we have a surplus of pasta at the moment.

Madron Fete planning. We have a meeting in Caroline’s garden this week to plan our fete, which will take place on June 5th. Please prepare plants for sale. We will be pleased to receive your new or nearly new items for sale

We pray for Hugh and Sarah, married at Gulval  yesterday, and for the family of Russell Jory of Gulval, following his death. His funeral will be in Gulval church the following week. Also for the family of Janie Searle

Collect for Easter 5

Almighty God, whose Son Jesus Christ is the resurrection and the life: raise us, who trust in him, from the death of sin to the life of righteousness, that we may seek those things which are above, where he reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

First reading     Acts 8.26-40  

Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Go south to the road—the desert road—that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.”  So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians. This man had gone to Jerusalem to worship and on his way home was sitting in his chariot reading the Book of Isaiah the prophet. The Spirit told Philip, “Go to that chariot and stay near it.” Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked. “How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?” So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. This is the passage of Scripture the eunuch was reading “He was led like a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb before its shearer is silent, so he did not open his mouth. In his humiliation he was deprived of justice. Who can speak of his descendants? For his life was taken from the earth.” The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else?”  Then Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus.

As they travelled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water. What can stand in the way of my being baptized?” And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing. Philip, however, appeared at Azotus and travelled about, preaching the gospel in all the towns until he reached Caesarea.

 Second reading     John 15.1-8

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. his is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

Sermon notes – Rev Ian Lowell

These are the days of miracle and wonder. This is the long-distance call. The way the camera follows us in slo-mo. The way we look to us all. The way we look to a distant constellation. That’s dying in a corner of the sky. These are the days of miracle and wonder. And don’t cry baby don’t cry. These words are from Paul Simon’s song ‘The Boy in the Bubble’ on the 1986 Graceland. The album was inspired by South African mbaqanga street music. Simon visited South Africa — a highly controversial decision during Apartheid — and wrote the lyrics while there. The title refers to two medical situations. The first was David Phillip Vetter, whose bodily immunity deficiency meant that in order to live he had to reside in a bubble. Sadly he died aged 12 in 1984, the year Simon visited South Africa. The second boy in a bubble was Ted DeVita, who suffered from a different immune deficiency but who also lived in a sterile environment. He died aged 17 in 1980. But the song references many different verbal images, from soldiers and the explosion of an IED at the beginning of the song, to the technical advances of long distance telephone calls and slow motion filming in the refrain, up to lasers in the jungle in the last verse, with a reference to the powerful (billionaires and millionaires).

Emotionally and spiritually the album has links to our first reading, which has a spectacular series of events.  Philip is encouraged to go into the wilderness where he meets an African reading from Isaiah. This encounter changes both of them. The African is baptised and Philip learns that neither colour nor being emasculated is a bar to becoming a Christian. He is then whisked away to Azotos, a gentile region, from where he works his way to Cæsarea further up the coast: a journey of nearly 100km or 62 miles, a slow journey of four to five days. We have an African connection, miracle and wonder, mention of the powerful, communication (lasers, long distance telephone calls), changed perspective (camera … in slo-mo), and Graceland. I would suggest we live in Graceland — not Elvis Presley’s former home — but we live in a land, indeed an earth that is the realm of Grace. And within that there is miracle and wonder. That seems to sit awkwardly with a situation in our world where a global pandemic is set to become endemic. What has caused this but the miracle and wonder of life, and a miracle and wonder of life we have ignored in our human arrogance. We had begun to worry about overusing the magic bullet of antibiotics and the danger of bacterial resistance, while forgetting that there has been little medical success against the most basic of viral infections — the common cold. A virus, like a bacterium, is a part of the cosmos that God has created and given for us to live in. But to live in within not apart from the ecosystem of life. And viruses like bacteria develop as we do, but being simpler forms of life they can change much more rapidly. The lyrics of ‘The Boy in the Bubble’ begins with our misuse of development — we are presented with images of soldiers and a bomb exploding! We live in not in a fallen world, but in a world in which we have fallen from Grace.

We have exploited our environment for purely our own ends — and we are only just learning to accept this. In the 1999 film The Matrix, Agent Smith has this message to relate: “Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment; but you humans do not. Instead you multiply, and multiply, until every resource is consumed. The only way for you to survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus .”Graceland in the terms of the Good News, the Gospel, is there — a world to come about if we live in harmony with God and with our neighbour. But our neighbour has a much broader and deeper meaning than just out fellow human being. Our scientific and technological achievements are miracle and wonder, but so too is the natural world of which we are a part. Our Gospel Reading emphasises this continuity and coherence in the image of the vine.

As Christians we need both a binocular and a microscopic vision of life in all its miracle and wonder, while being aware of our need to be humble and open in mind and heart. Loving God and knowing Jesus as the Christ enables us to hope that God’s love is ever-present and ever-powerful. We can understand that we are branches of the True Vine. Loving our neighbour and neighbourhood enables us to understand we are also a part of the cosmos that God has created and redeemed. And we need to deepen our appreciation of and work with the natural environment of which we are a part. We are twigs on the branches of the tree of life too. We can be the fruit of the trees, both of good and evil, and of life. Paul Simon was going to use ‘Driving through Wasteland’ as the title of the album before settling on just Graceland. We are truly driving through wasteland but we also on our way to Graceland. Don’t cry.

mately all about – not rotas, management, initiatives, computing or even zoom meetings (lifeline though they have been) – these things are mere servants to the purpose. As we flag up how the Shepherd we work for, and model, laid down his life for them, we can begin to grasp that we are not part of a struggling organisation but part of a growing flock, where relationships are what matters, and where we are simply working with Jesus and in his strength, in his way and in his time.