John 14:15-17 “Loving me empowers you to obey my commands. And I will ask  the Father and he will give you another Savior, the Holy Spirit of Truth, who  will be to

OPENING SENTENCE
Bless our God, you peoples; let the sound of his praise be heard.

HYMN

GREETING

Alleluia Christ is risen.

The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia.

Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ

He has given us new life and hope

by raising Jesus from the dead.

COLLECT FOR PURITY

Almighty God

to whom all hearts be 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 Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

SUMMARY OF THE LAW

Our Lord Jesus Christ said: The first commandment is this: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is the only Lord. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.”

The second is this: “Love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.

Amen. Lord, have mercy.

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CONFESSION

God is love and we are God’s children.

There is no room for fear in love.

We love because God loved us first.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith.

God our Father, we confess to you

and to our fellow members in the Body of Christ

that we have sinned in thought, word and deed,

and in what we have failed to do.

We are truly sorry.

Forgive us our sins,

and deliver us from the power of evil,

for the sake of your Son who died for us, Jesus Christ, our Lord.

ABSOLUTION

May the God of love and power

forgive you and free you from your sins,

heal and strengthen you by his Spirit

and raise you to new life in Christ our Lord. Amen.

GLORIA
sung by Billy Dewar Riddick

COLLECT

O God,

from whom all good things arise:

grant such grace to those who call on you,

that, by your inspiration,

we may ponder those things that are right,

and by your guidance, do them;

through Jesus Christ, our Lord,

who lives and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, world without end. Amen

FIRST READING
ACTS 17:22-31 read by Kay Solaja

Then Paul stood in front of the Areopagus and said, “Athenians, I see how extremely spiritual you are in every way. For as I went through the city and looked carefully at the objects of your worship, I found among them an altar with the inscription, ‘To an unknown god.’ What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it, he who is Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in shrines made by human hands, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mortals life and breath and all things. From one ancestor he made all peoples to inhabit the whole earth, and he allotted the times of their existence and the boundaries of the places where they would live, so that they would search for God and perhaps fumble about for him and find him—though indeed he is not far from each one of us. For ‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we, too, are his offspring.’

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“Since we are God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the deity is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of mortals. While God has overlooked the times of human ignorance, now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will have the world judged in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed, and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”

SECOND READING
1 Peter 3: 13-22 read by Annabelle Guthrie

Now who will harm you if you are eager to do what is good? But even if you do suffer for doing what is right, you are blessed. Do not fear what they fear, and do not be intimidated, but in your hearts sanctify Christ as Lord. Always be ready to make your defence to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and respect.

May 15, 2022 - Bible verse of the day (NRSV) - 1 Peter 3:15 -  DailyVerses.net

Maintain a good conscience so that, when you are maligned, those who abuse you for your good conduct in Christ may be put to shame. For it is better to suffer for doing good, if suffering should be God’s will, than to suffer for doing evil. For Christ also suffered for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, in order to bring you to God. He was put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit, in which also he went and made a proclamation to the spirits in prison, who in former times did not obey, when God waited patiently in the days of Noah, during the building of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight lives, were saved through water. And baptism, which this prefigured, now saves you—not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers made subject to him.

HYMN

GOSPEL READING
JOHN 14:15-21 read by Rev Janice Aiton

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to St John chapter 14 beginning at verse 15

Glory to Christ our Saviour.

The Promise of the Holy Spirit

“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him because he abides with you, and he will be in you.

Jesus in You (John 14:15-21) | St John's Lutheran Church, Tea Tree Gully

“I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live. On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me, and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.”

SERMON

Image of Winnie the Pooh and Piglet sat on a log, with the quote "how lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard" by A.A. Milne above it.

One of the things I do not like doing, is saying goodbye. I find the parting of family and friends does not come easily. However, there are partings that are harder than others. The most painful parting happens when someone we love dies. This is so hard because of the immediate finality of their life and presence here on earth.

Jesus is looking at the impending finality of his physical life here on earth, and both he and his disciples are faced with a painful farewell. Our gospel passage focuses on the night before Jesus’ death. Over time Jesus has been preparing his disciples for his departure from this world. Today in John’s gospel Jesus speaks openly and frankly with his disciples about his imminent death. Interesting Jesus does not speak of his life ending but rather that he is going home to be with his Father.

However, all the disciples could hear, and grasp hold of in this discourse was that Jesus was leaving them. They feared that he was going to abandon them, and they would be alone and bereft. Jesus is all too aware of their fears and apprehensions and shows remarkable sensitivity to their needs, in a time of crisis for himself. He puts their needs before his own. He knows all too well how these past three years have created a bond between them and how the disciples have come to trust, rely, and depend upon him. Jesus has become everything to them- their friend, companion, and Saviour. Jesus cares enormously for them. He wants them to be secure and strong to execute his mission and ministry in the future. So, Jesus is at pains to calm them and reassure them that he will not forsake them. He will be with them. He will not leave them as orphans.

Orphans is a stark word. It holds connotations of abandonment and isolation. Throughout Scripture God has a heart and concern for the orphan and Jesus bears God’s heart and comprehends the desperation that comes from being an orphan. Jesus does not want that for his disciples and so he says: “I will not leave you as orphans.”

These words of Jesus: “I will not leave you as orphans” carried tremendous power and significance then and still today, especially in a world where a considerable number of children are orphans and other children and adults, are so isolated and alone that it feels as if they are orphans.

Orphans and Orphanages in South Sudan – Sudan Relief Fund

Jesus does not desire any of his children to be orphans. He wants them to be held in his love and provided for. I am sure Jesus is heartbroken at our state of the world where many children are left as orphans. Earlier this week the Guardian newspaper had a headline which read: “Lone child refugees stranded in Sudan may risk travelling in small boats to UK.” Fighting in Sudan is leaving children as orphans, with no guardian, support network or carer. Children are extremely vulnerable and helpless. To have no parent or place that you can call home is traumatic.

To be rootless and left to your own devices is both sad and cruel. Sudan is by no means the only country with increasing numbers of orphans. In Ukraine where there were already a high percentage of children in orphanages, more children have become orphans following the war, with children in orphanages been forced into camps and facilities across Russia by their invaders. Our task as Christians is to reach out to the orphans with Christ’s love in the world. As we love him, we are to keep his commandments and in turn, so we are to love others.

They're so young': Ukrainian orphans flee to safety | Daily Sabah

We see this longing in Jesus’ farewell discourse to his disciples. They say that the words of a dying man carrying great power and significance. Jesus here wants to set the minds and the hearts of his disciples at ease. He longs that they will love as he loved, and that in that formidable task, they will not be alone. They will not be orphaned or abandoned for Jesus’ promises them another Advocate. Jesus is the first Advocate, and the second Advocate is God’s Holy Spirit.

In effect what Jesus is saying here is shortly I am leaving you physically, but I am coming back to you through the Spirit. I will be with you; I will never forsake you. I will still accompany you and journey with you, but from a different place, from within. By their faith they will be able to see him, and through their obedience to his commandments they will be drawn into a loving communion with him.

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At a point in our lives, we all need to hear those words: “I will not leave you orphaned.” Certainly, there are moments in all our lives, when changes, difficulties and tragedies can leave us feeling as orphans. We ask the same questions as orphans: “What will I do? Who will be there for me now? What will become of me? How will I manage?” Jesus’ words “I will not leave you as orphans” speaks directly to our greatest fears and challenges whether they be rejection, abandonment, isolation, vulnerability, and loneliness.

Loneliness is becoming one of the greatest challenges of this age. Gary Collins said: “As government, business and education get bigger and more impersonal, people feel smaller and less needed.” While we have advanced technologically, we also have taken steps backwards in our personal relationships.

Covid: Loneliness a 'bigger health risk than smoking or obesity' - BBC News

Whilst Zoom, Microsoft teams, Email, WhatsApp are great to have at our fingertips, nonetheless, something has been lost in our interpersonal face to face relationships, creating a greater sense of loneliness. The decreased amount of time we have for leisure because of long working hours, and a busy lifestyle, means that we are frequently on the run and have less time for conversations and chats, leaving many feeling isolated and alone. Loneliness is on the increase. It is not so much that we cannot be around people, but that we are too busy, too busy to relax, sit back and enjoy time with one another. The truth is that there is an increasing loss of community that is at the root cause of loneliness.

It is Jesus words “I will not leave you as orphans” that remind us that we are not meant to walk this earth alone. We are not made to journey this life alone. We are created for interpersonal relationships, and to live in community with one another, mirroring the loving life of community in the Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Mirroring this love is not something that we can manufacture on our own. We need God’s spirit working in and through us, filling us with his love, creating such a heart of love for others that we are ready and willing to reach out practically to the orphans in this world and to those who feel orphaned. We are to be so tune with the Spirit, that our loving becomes instinctive, and transformative, in the way that Jesus was so in tune with the Father that God’s love was displayed in Jesus.

Tributes paid after death of Jim Redmond, who helped son at 1992 Olympics

I remember seeing some time ago in a video clip this strong bond of love and unity in Father and Son. It’s a true story entitled “Derek and Dad finish Olympic 400 together”. Derek Redmond was a young British runner, who rocketed to fame by shattering his country’s 400-metre record aged 19, but then an Achilles tendon injury forced him to withdraw from the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, and he endured five separate operations. When the Summer Olympics arrived in Barcelona in 1992, Derek was absolutely aching for a medal. On the day of the semi- final races for the 400-metres race, 65,000 fans streamed into the stadium. High in the stands was Derek’s proud father, Jim, a regular at every one of his son’s races.

The race began. Derek broke through the pack to seize the lead. Heading down the backstretch, only 175 metres from the finish line, Derek seemed well on his way to winning the heat and qualifying for the Olympic finals. But then Derek heard a pop. It was his right hamstring. He pulled up looking as if he had been shot. His leg quivering, Derek began to hop on the other leg. He got slower and slower finally falling to the track. Medics ran towards him as he sprawled on the ground, holding his right leg.

At the same moment, there was a stir at the top of the stands. Jim, seeing his son in trouble, was desperately working his way down toward the track, sidestepping some people and bumping into others, all he could think about was getting to his son, to help him up and no one was going to stop him. On the track, Derek realized that his dream of an Olympic medal was gone. He was alone. Tears poured down Derek’s face, and all he could think was, “I don’t want a DNF.” A Did-Not-Finish. When the medics arrived with a stretcher, Derek told them, “I am not getting on that stretcher. I’m going to finish my race.” And so, he lifted himself to his feet, slowly and carefully, and he started hobbling down the track.

Gradually, the crowd realized that Derek was not dropping out of the race. He was not limping off the track in defeat, but was actually continuing on one leg, in a fiercely determined effort to make it to the finish line. One painful step at a time, each one a little slower and more agonizing than the one before, Derek limped onward, and the crowd began to cheer for him. The fans rose to their feet and their cries grew louder and louder, building into a thunderous roar.

Derek Redmond's father to carry Olympic flame during torch relay | Olympic  Games 2012 | The Guardian

At that moment, Jim reached the bottom of the stands, jumped over the railing, and ran to his son with two security people running after him. “That’s my son out there,” he yelled back at his pursuers, “and I’m going to help him.” Derek put his arms around his father’s shoulders and sobbed. Together, arm in arm, father and son struggled toward the finish line with 65,000 people cheering, clapping, and crying. Just a few steps from the end, with the crowd in an absolute frenzy, Jim released the grip he had on his son so that Derek could cross the finish line by himself. “I’m the proudest father alive,” Jim told the press afterward, with tears in his eyes.

God Has Poured Out His Love Into Our Hearts Through the Holy Spirit -  Belovedlove Sunray

This bond of love and support we see in Derek and Jim mirrors something of the bond we see in God the Father and Jesus. It is this bond that we have in Jesus through the Spirit. It is this bond that will fire us to love and to care for the orphan in Sudan, the orphan in Ukraine and for those who feel alone and lonely. We rejoice that the disciples were not orphaned and that they had God’s Spirit within them. We have Christ’s Sprit within us and in Christ we live and move and have our being, and through His Spirit we can do amazing things for his glory. Amen

Christ The Savior Lutheran Church

NICENE CREED

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty maker of heaven and earth,

of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,

the only Son of God,

eternally begotten of the Father,

God from God, Light from Light,

true God from true God,

begotten, not made,

of one substance with the Father.

Through him all things were made.

For us and for our salvation

he came down from heaven;

by the power of the Holy Spirit

he became incarnate of the Virgin Mary,

and was made man.

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;

he suffered death and was buried.

On the third day he rose again

in accordance with the Scriptures;

he ascended into heaven

and is seated at the right hand of the Father.

He will come again in glory

to judge the living and the dead,

and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit,

the Lord, the giver of life,

who proceeds from the Father.

With the Father and the Son,

he is worshipped and glorified.

He has spoken through the Prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.

We acknowledge one baptism

for the forgiveness of sins.

We look for the resurrection of the dead,

and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Praying Moms – LRPC HOME

PRAYERS

O Holy Spirit, Giver of love

fills us with life afresh,

that as you love, so may we love,

and do what you would do.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God, you are love,

and all of us are held in your infinite love.

Strengthen all that restores us in your image,

and make us worthy of our calling,

as your sons and daughters.

Help us not to create you in our image,

but instead clothe us with Christ-like qualities

of love, kindness, forgiveness, gentleness, and mercy.

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Help us Lord,

to love one another

God, your love is patient and kind,

may the church clear way any barriers,

which prevent your love flooding it.

Wash away all that is selfish and negative,

control our tongues and our cruel thoughts,

and help us to build strong loving foundations.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

Keeps No Record of Wrongs

God, your love is forgiving and restoring.

Your love is a love that keeps no record of wrongs,

but always hopes and trusts.

We pray for those people,

who are riddled with guilt or failure,

that you will remind them

of your forgiving and renewing presence

and of your unconditional love.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God, love is your gift to us,

we give thanks for those

who have so freely shared your love with us.

We give you thanks for our families and friends,

and pray for all who are in any way deprived of love,

thinking especially of the orphans in Sudan and Ukraine.

We ask that you would bring significant others into their lives,

and so grant them the richness of your love.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God's Healing Grace | Sunrise images, Sunset nature, Beautiful sunrise

God, love is your mark of healing and grace.

We think of all the people known to us suffering

with frailty, weakness, illness, and depression.

Lord, you know them all by name,

draw near with your calm and peace.

Touch them with your power and gentleness.

May you be present in their darkness and pain,

and as deep calls to deep, bring them inner quiet and hope.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God, love is your word,

we pray for those who doubt your promises,

in difficult times of parting and bereavement,

unemployment, unrest, and suffering.

We ask that you will enfold them in your love,

fill them with your strength and peace,

and restore their trust in your living presence and word.

We remember those, who mourn today the loss of a loved one.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God, your love is a generous love,

inviting us to care and share with others.

We remember our brothers and sisters,

in different parts of the world,

struggling with natural disasters, civil war,

poverty, oppression, and corruption.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God your love is merciful and generous,

We pray for countries that are caught up in war,

and ask that peace and stability might come.

We pray for all who fear for their lives

and are living in desperate conditions

especially for all Sudan and Ukraine,

Help us Lord,

to love one another

Christian Aid Week 2023

As we begin today, this week of Christian Aid,

we remember the Christian Aid workers,

as they seek to help people

in difficult situations throughout the world,

We pray that we might have open and generous hearts.

to support financially and prayerfully their work.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God love is your call to us,

asking us to deny ourselves,

take up our cross and follow you.

Help us to surrender all to you in love,

and allow you to influence and direct our lives

that we might grow more like your children

in faith and love.

Help us Lord,

to love one another

God you are love,

We lift to you our families

and those whom we hold dear

thanking you for all their love.

May we cherish that love

and may we never take your infinite love, O God, for granted.

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Merciful Father accept these prayers

for the sake of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord

who taught us to say together,

Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread.

Forgive us our sins

as we forgive those

who sin against us.

Do not bring us to the time of trial

but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours, now and for ever. Amen.

HYMN

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BLESSING

God the Father,

by whose glory Christ was raised from the dead,

strengthen you to walk with him in his risen life;

and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit

be among you and remain with you always. Amen

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DISMISSAL

Go or stay in peace to love and serve the Lord.

Alleluia! Alleluia!

In the name of Christ,

Alleluia! Alleluia!

Welcome

St John the Evangelist, Dumfries, is a parish of the Scottish Episcopal Church also serving Methodist parishioners locally.

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Notices

Contemporary Service

Contemporary Service

The Contemporary Service is at 6pm, on the second and fourth Sundays of the month, followed by refreshments in the hall.

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St John's Church

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Everyone is very welcome to come along to St John's Church, Newall Terrace, Dumfries DG1 1LW, at 6pm this Sunday, Pentecost Day, 19th May, when the choir of St John's

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Sunday 12th May 2024 is our Eucharistic Services at 11: 00am. You are most welcome to come along. Be great to see you. Contemporary Service is at 6pm on 12th

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Everyone is very welcome to come along to St John's Church, Newall Terrace, Dumfries DG1 1LW this Sunday, 5th May, at 6pm, where the choir of St John's Church will

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Sunday 5th May 2024 is our Eucharistic Services at 8:00am & 11: 00am. You are most welcome to come along. Be great to see you. Choral evensong is at 6pm