Announcements: Look for these down at the end of the order of service
THE GATHERING OF THE CHURCH
Take a moment of stillness. Light a candle and .... take a few moments before going on.
May the Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
And also with you.
Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you 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.
God of unfailing light,
in your realm of glory
the poor are blessed,
the hungry filled,
and every tear is wiped away.
Strengthened by this vision,
may we follow in the way of holiness
that your Son made known in life and death. Amen.
Opening hymn #278 ‘Jerusalem the Golden’
Jerusalem the golden, with milk and honey blest, beneath your contemplation sink heart and voice oppressed. I know not, O I know not, what joys await us there; what radiancy of glory, what bliss beyond compare.
They stand, those halls of Zion, all jubilant with song, and bright with many an angel, and all the martyr throng. The Prince is ever in them, the daylight is serene; the pastures of the blessed are decked in glorious sheen.
There is the throne of David; and there, from care released, the song of them that triumph, the shout of them that feast; and they who with their Leader have conquered in the fight, forever and forever
are clad in robes of white.
O sweet and blessed country, the home of God's elect! O sweet and blessed country that eager hearts expect! Jesus, in mercy bring us to that dear land of rest; who are, with God the Father and Spirit, ever blest.
1st Reading Revelation 7:9-17
After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count,
from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages,
standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands.
They cried out in a loud voice, saying,
"Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!"
And all the angels stood around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures,
and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God,
singing, "Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might
be to our God forever and ever! Amen."
Then one of the elders addressed me, saying,
"Who are these, robed in white, and where have they come from?"
I said to him, "Sir, you are the one that knows."
Then he said to me, "These are they who have come out of the great ordeal; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
For this reason they are before the throne of God, and worship him day and night within his temple, and the one who is seated on the throne will shelter them.
They will hunger no more, and thirst no more; the sun will not strike them, nor any scorching heat;
for the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes."
The Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God
Psalm 34: ‘Taste and See’
Refrain: Taste and see the goodness of the Lord, the goodness of the Lord.
v.1: I will bless the Lord at all times, God’s praise ever in my mouth. Glory in the Lord for ever , and the lowly will hear and be glad. Refrain
v.2: Glory in the Lord with me, let us together exol God’s name. I sought the Lord, who answered me and delivered me from all my fears. Refrain
v.3: Look to God that you might be radiant with joy, and your faces free from all shame. The Lord hears the suffering souls, and saves them from distress. Refrain
2nd Reading 1 John 3:1-3
See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God;
and that is what we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
Beloved, we are God's children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed.
What we do know is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is.
And all who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.
The Word of the Lord
Thanks be to God
Hymn #286: ‘Give me Wings of Faith’
Give me the wings of faith to rise within the veil, and see the saints above, how great their joys, how bright their glories be.
Once they were mourning here below, and wet their couch with tears: they wrestled hard, as we do now, with sins, and doubts, and fears.
I ask them whence their victory came: they, with united breath, ascribe their conquest to the Lamb, their triumph to His death.
They marked the footsteps that He trod, his zeal inspired their breast; and following their incarnate God, possess the rest.
Our glorious Leader claims our praise for his own pattern giv’n; while the long cloud of witnesses show the same path to Heav'n.
Text by Isaac Watts
THE PROCLAMATION OF THE GOSPEL
The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew
Glory to you, Lord Jesus Christ.
When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him.
Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
"Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
"Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
"Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.
"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
"Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
"Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matthew 5:1-12)
The Gospel of Christ
Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ.
Reflection for the readings for All Saints Day for video click here
Did you ever play tennis?
Do you play tennis?
I think being saintly has a connection to tennis.
I first played tennis when I was about 12 or 13. The point of the game was to see how many times the two of us could get the ball back and forth across the net without it going out of play. It was a co-operative endeavour. We felt great when we got into double figures!
The next Summer came and it was all about the serve. Ideally the serve did not go into the net. We had moved from throwing the ball down and hitting it as it came up, to throwing it up and hitting it as it came down. “Overhead serving” it was called. If you could serve and get it across three times running it was a cause of major celebration.
Towards the end of that Summer the point moved towards making it difficult for the other person to get it back. Serves and returns no longer caused celebration just for making it over. Now the point had become to make it difficult for the other to get the ball back. Clearly, we were heading for Wimbledon!
There were other sports at school, but I mostly disliked them.
What was the point of running? Walking was more pleasant and bicycles were there for going faster. Rugby was mostly about crashing into people and sliding in the mud in the continual rain of the Autumn and Winter.
I was off sick for the first week of the penultimate year of school. I had to go, a week late, to register with the games (phys-ed) teachers. Walking across the grounds to do so, it suddenly occurred to me that, unregistered as I was, and in a school with well over a thousand kids, I did not actually exist in their consciousness. I decided to leave it like that and thereafter spent my Thursday afternoons taking a three mile walk downtown then wandering pleasantly in the art galleries of Bristol before walking home another two miles.
Back to All the Saints.
Are those called saints particularly good at anything? Do they excel in areas of unusual asceticism? Are they noticeably “good”? Do they compulsively help old ladies to cross the street? Are they so selfless that they forget to eat supper?
Jesus has a list of characteristics;
Poor in spirit....mournful.....meek....hungry and thirsty for righteousness....merciful....pure in heart.....peacemakers.....persecuted because of their persistent righteousness......generally disliked or badly thought of...
This feels about as attractive as playing rugby in the rain.
For me tennis was about joyfulness. It was at its best when we came off the court both happy, delighted with what shots we had done best, which returns we had pulled off, and with congratulations for the effort and skill that the other had shown. Winning and losing was tangential.
I am with the psalmist today.
I like the idea of praise being continually in my mouth. To boast, not in myself, but in the Lord. I think it is good when the humble shall be glad. And how cool to be exalting God and magnifying her or him?
How about living your life so that you look to God when you are in difficulty and realising, as you get out, that God helped you to get out?
The idea of a radiant life based in living consciously in the presence of God seems compelling to me.
I would like to lead a life in which the angel of the Lord encamps around me. What a delightful image? You go to bed at night, and quietly there are angels unrolling their tents all around your house or bedroom. Surrounded by fragments of the divine you can sleep in peace, in safety, even if, that night, you die...!
Taste and see.....happy are they who take refuge in the divine.... honour God and have no want....lack no truly good thing......know that none who live like this will ever be condemned.
John says; “Look! We are God’s children! We don’t really know precisely what this means but it is GOOD! The divinity sewn into us in our creation, made, as we are, in the image of God. If we work to bring it out in our living of this life, this will unite us with God in ways we cannot now comprehend”.
The point of tennis is that it is fun. It is celebratory to play tennis. Working at it to get better is so that you may both have more fun. It deepens friendship.
Sport is for the fun of it, with the tangential benefit of keeping your body in good shape so that your health keeps up and things don’t start to fall apart on you.
Similarly, the spiritual life of feeling your way into the divine is a joyful thing.
It too benefits from a discipline of practice and an avoidance of things which inhibit it.
You already know what leads you away from being in God’s presence. You also know roughly what opens the door of your soul to welcoming the Holy Spirit into your heart. Trust your instincts.
And as with sport, if you hate rugby, for heaven’s sake don’t play it. But if you adore cycling, walking or even Tai Chi, then do them!
Saints are not just those dead people with “St” in front of their name. Saints comes from the Latin “sanctus” meaning Holy. Saints are people living in holiness of life, of heart, of relationship and of joyfulness.
Being a saint is simply being holy. And holiness is found by building a way of being, a “spiritual practice”, of paying attention to a question like “How would I feel if Jesus was just behind me?” that you could ask yourself at any moment of the day.
It’s like trying to be the best tennis player you can be, while encouraging the other person to be their best too. The score doesn’t matter. The joyfulness at the end of the game matters.
How “holy” you thought you needed to be to be a saint is irrelevant. It is the desire to play with God that alone counts and invites you to be a member of All Saints.
Happy all Saints Day to you!!!
Reflection Hymn ‘Blest are They’
Refrain: Rejoice and be glad! Blessed are you, holy are you! Rejoice and be glad! Yours is the kingdom of God!
v1: Blest are they, the poor in spirit, theirs is the kingdom of God. Blest are they, full of sorrow, they shall be consoled. Refrain
v.2: Blest are they, the lowly ones, they shall inherit the earth. Blest are they who hunger and thirst, they shall have their fill. Refrain
v.3: Blest are they who show mercy, mercy shall be theirs. Blest are they, the pure of heart, they shall see God! Refrain
v.4: Blest are they who seek peace; they are the children of God. Blest are they who suffer in faith, the glory of God is theirs. Refrain
v.5: Blest are you who suffer hate, all because of me. Rejoice and be glad, yours is the kingdom; shine for all to see. Refrain
THE PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
A prayer leader reads the prayers
Let us pray for ourselves and each other, and for those that we do not know, but who you know.
We remember those we know who are sick in body mind or spirit, especially Rose, Frieda, Penny, Enid, Anne and Craig and family, Hugh, Donna, …
We pray for those who are close to death or who have passed through death, remembering Al, Joey, Mick, Paulette, Fred, Ron, Michael, Bob…
In the diocesan cycle of prayer, we pray for St. Thomas, Shanty Bay, its support of Barrie Out of the Cold, the Busby Street outreach van, its community garden, and education for reconciliation;
for St. Timothy, Agincourt, its involvement with weekly hot lunch and breakfast programs and an Out of the Cold program, and its support of the Agincourt Community Services Association, Stephen Lewis Foundation, and other local, national and international outreach programs;
and for St. Timothy, North Toronto, its monthly community lunches, monthly dinners at St. George House, support of services including Moorelands Community Services, The Stop Community Food Centre, the Pikangikum Water Project, and a school and rehabilitation centre in Malawi.
We pray for our world, for those who make decisions small and great to care for creation. We pray for those who lead us in Government, for Doug our Premier, for Justin our Prime Minister, for Adam our MP, for Chris our MPP and for all those who lead; that they may govern with wisdom and compassion.
All of our longings and our fears, our hopes and our desires we bring to you. Hear our prayers, gracious God. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayers of Reconciliation
Dear friends in Christ, God is steadfast in love and infinite in mercy; welcoming sinners and inviting them to this table. Let us confess our sins, confident in God’s forgiveness.
Silence is kept.
Most merciful God,
we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbours as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us, that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your name. Amen.
Almighty God have mercy upon you, pardon and deliver you from all your sins, confirm and strengthen you in all goodness, and keep you in eternal life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
In the company of Saints and Angels, and the quietly holy ones hidden in our midst,
may the peace of the Lord be always with you. And also with you.
Offering Hymn #422 ‘God, Who Touchest Earth with Beauty’
God who touchest earth with beauty, make my heart anew; with thy Spirit recreate me pure and strong and true.
Like thy springs and running waters, make me crystal pure; like thy rocks of towering grandeur, make me strong and sure.
Like thy dancing waves in sunlight, make me glad and free; like the straightness of the pine trees let me upright be.
Like the arching of the heavens, lift my thoughts above; turn my dreams to noble action, ministries of love.
THE EUCHARISTIC PRAYER
Gloria: Glory to God in the highest, Sing! Glory to God! Glory to God in the highest and peace to his people on earth.
The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.
It is indeed right that we should praise you, gracious God, for you created all things.
You formed us in your own image: just as we are you created us.
When we turned away from you in sin, you did not cease to care for us,
but opened a path of salvation for all people.
You made a covenant with Israel, and through your servants Abraham and Sarah
gave the promise of a blessing to all nations.
Through Moses you led your people from bondage into freedom;
through the prophets you renewed your promise of salvation.
Therefore, with them, and with all your saints who have served you in every age,
we give thanks and raise our voices to proclaim the glory of your name.
Sanctus: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power, God of might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed are they who come in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest!
Holy God, source of life and goodness, all creation rightly gives you praise.
In the fullness of time, you sent your Son Jesus Christ, to share our human nature,
to live and die as one of us, to reconcile us to you, the God and Father of all.
He healed the sick and ate and drank with outcasts and sinners; he opened the eyes of the blind
and proclaimed the good news of your kingdom to the poor and to those in need.
In all things he fulfilled your gracious will.
On the night he freely gave himself to death, our Lord Jesus Christ took bread,
and when he had given thanks to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said,
“Take, eat: this is my body which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me.”
After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and said,
“Drink this, all of you: this is my blood of the new covenant,
which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.
Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me.”
Gracious God, his perfect sacrifice destroys the power of sin and death;
by raising him to life you give us life for evermore.
Dying you destroyed our death, rising you restored our life. Lord Jesus come in glory.
Recalling his death, proclaiming his resurrection, and looking for his coming again in glory,
we offer you, Father, this bread.
Send your Holy Spirit upon us and upon this gift, that all who eat at this table
may be one body and one holy people, a living sacrifice in Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Through Christ, with Christ, and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory is yours,
almighty Father, now and for ever.
The Lord’s Prayer
As our Saviour taught us, let us say:
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
and forgive us our sins,
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil,
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours,
Now and for ever. Amen.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world: have mercy on us, grant us your peace.
Closing Hymn #276 ‘For All the Saints’
For all the saints who from their labors rest, who thee by faith before the world confessed, thy name, O Jesus, be forever blest. Alleluia! Alleluia!
O blest communion, fellowship divine, we feebly struggle, they in glory shine; yet all are one in thee, for all are thine. Alleluia! Alleluia!
But lo! there breaks a yet more glorious day; the saints triumphant rise in bright array; the King of glory passes on his way. Alleluia! Alleluia!
From earth's wide bounds, from ocean's farthest coast, through gates of pearl streams in the countless host, singing to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, Alleluia! Alleluia!
May God’s love surround us, God’s Spirit guide us,
God’s whisper challenge us, God’s peace calm us,
May God’s shield protect us, God’s wisdom arm us, wherever God may lead us.
We will depart in peace,
in the name of the Lord. Amen! Alleluia!
NOTICES AND ANNOUNCEMENTS FOR THIS WEEK
Weekly/Monthly Donations. Sincere thanks to all of you who have contributed regularly to St. Andrew’s especially since March 8 when our world turned topsy-turvy. I appreciate that the donations come in a variety of ways at a variety of times. You have found a way that works for you and gets deposited in the church account. Thank you.
Here, again, are your options for giving.
PAR - Pre-Authorized Remittance - To register contact Joyce Rogers at email@example.com
E-Transfer - Use email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Canada Helps – Use the Donate button on the church website: standrewbythelake.com
Collection Plate now that church is open for services. Cheques and cash are acceptable if you are unable to use the other options.
Amaryllis bulbs are available again this year. $20 each available as of November 29. Place your order by sending an email to email@example.com or leave a message at 416-203-0987 - Joyce may even answer! Wait for your order confirmation for payment and delivery instructions.
Moscow - white
Red Lion – red, of course
Apple Blossom – soft pink and white
Anyone who has purchased these bulbs in the past will attest to the quality of product. In fact, many of you probably still have one in your home that has given you a multitude of blooms over the years. So think of all your friends that you want to give a gift that keeps on growing. Decide what colours you want this year and email us today. It has been a difficult year for all of us. Let’s plant the seed for a better year in 2021!
A prayer as I put on my mask
Creator, as I prepare to go into the world, help me to see the sacrament in the wearing of this cloth,let it be "an outward sign of an inward grace", a tangible and visible way of living love for my neighbors, as I love myself.
Christ, since my lips will be covered, uncover my heart, that people would see my smile in the crinkles around my eyes.
Since my voice may be muffled, help me to speak clearly, not only with my words, but with my actions.
Holy Spirit, As the elastic touches my ears, remind me to listen carefully -and full of care - to all those I meet.
May this simple piece of cloth be shield and banner, and each breath that it holds, be filled with your love.
In your Name and in that love, I pray. Amen