Worship for Ascension Day – 21st May

Preparing for worshipif possible, beginning at 7.15pm
You’ll need a table, set with a piece of bread and a glass of wine or juice.
A cross.
A candle, lit on the table.
A small bowl of water.

It is a great joy to share together in celebrating the good news of Jesus’ mighty resurrection and glorious ascension into heaven, as we look towards the gift of the Spirit at Pentecost.

For those who weren’t awake at 6am on Easter Day(!), it is another appropriate opportunity to renew out baptism vows, hence the bowl of water in preparation today.

Alleluia! Christ is risen! Risen indeed! Alleluia!

Though each in our homes, we are together with all our sisters and brothers in the faith,
as we worship and give thanks. In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.


Lord, we are your church: we come to worship you.
You give us your Word: we come to listen.
You inspire us with the Breath of Life: we come to be open.
You call us your family: we come to belong.
You touch us with your cleansing fire: we come for forgiveness
You give the gift of life: we come to receive.
You shower us with riches: we come to give thanks.
We are your church: we come to worship you.

We say the Canticle, Great and Wonderful

Great and wonderful are your deeds, Lord God the Almighty.
Just and true are your ways, O ruler of the nations.
Who shall not revere and praise your name, O Lord? for you alone are holy.
All nations shall come and worship in your presence:
for your saving justice has been revealed.
To the One who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
be blessing and honour and glory and might, for ever and ever. Amen.

After a moment of quiet reflection, we confess our sins to God with this prayer;

Lord Jesus, you came to reconcile us to one another and to the Father,
but our world is full of fear and injustice.
Lord, have mercy

Lord Jesus, you heal the wounds of sin and division,
but we have not lived together in unity.
Christ, have mercy

Lord Jesus, you are the Good Shepherd leading us to abundant life,
but we fail to live as your people.
Lord, have mercy

If we say we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, the one who is faithful and just will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all our failings.

PRAYER OF ADORATION (said or sung)

Father we love you, we worship and adore you.
glorify your name in all the earth.
[If singing: Glorify your name, glorify your name,
glorify your name in all the earth]

Jesus we love you, we worship and adore you.
glorify your name in all the earth…..

Spirit we love you, we worship and adore you,
glorify your name in all the earth…..

O God the King of glory,
you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ
with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven:
we beseech you, leave us not comfortless,
but send your Holy Spirit to strengthen us
and exalt us to the place
where our Saviour Christ is gone before,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever. Amen

The first scripture reading. Acts 1.4-11

While staying with them, Jesus ordered the disciples not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for the promise of the Father. ‘This’, he said, ‘is what you have heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.’ So when they had come together, they asked him, ‘Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?’ He replied, ‘It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.’ When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. While he was going and they were gazing up towards heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, ‘Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up towards heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.’

For the word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.

HYMN (said or sung)
Meekness and majesty, manhood and deity,
in perfect harmony, the man who is God.
Lord of eternity dwells in humanity,
kneels in humility and washes our feet.

O what a mystery, meekness and majesty.
Bow down and worship, for this is your God,
this is your God.

Father’s pure radiance perfect in innocence,
yet learns obedience to death on a cross.
Suffering to give us life, conquering through sacrifice,
and as they crucify prays ‘Father forgive.’

Wisdom unsearchable, God the invisible,
love indestructible in frailty appears.
Lord of infinity, stooping so tenderly,
lifts our humanity to the heights of his throne

THE GOSPEL Matthew28.16-20

Alleluia, alleluia!
Go and make disciples of all nations, says the Lord.
Remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age. Alleluia!

The Good News of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew. Glory to you, O Lord.

Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, even to the very end of the age.”

At the end

for the Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, O Christ.


As we come to the end of the glorious season of Easter, celebrating the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ from the dead, and as we rejoice in Christ raising our humanity to the throne of heaven, we are all invited to renew the promises made at our baptism.

Take a few moments to reflect on your Christian journey – it’s joys and trials, celebrations and failures – and entrust your past, present and future into God’s hands as you renew your vows:




May God who has given us all the desire to follow Christ, give us strength to continue in the Way. Amen.

Hold your bowl of water in your left hand and hold your right hand over it as we say.

I believe and trust in God the Father who made all things

I believe and trust in his Son Jesus Christ who redeemed the world

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

This is the faith of the Church.

Dip your finger in the water and sign your forehead with the cross as a remembrance of your baptism.

Gracious God, you have called us by name and made us your own,
we thank you for our fellowship in the household of faith
with all who have been baptised into your name.
Keep us faithful to our baptism,
and so make us ready for that day
when the whole creation shall be made perfect in your Son,
our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

Defend us O Lord with your heavenly grace,
that we may continue yours for ever,
and daily increase in your Holy Spirit more and more
until we come to your everlasting kingdom.
Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.


Jesus, our exalted Lord, you have been given all authority in heaven and earth.
Pray for us at the right hand of the Father.

Jesus Christ, great high priest, living for ever to intercede for us:
we pray for your Church, your broken body in the world …

Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, King of righteousness, enthroned at the right hand of the majesty on high:
we pray for the world, make it subject to your gentle rule …

Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, Son of man, drawing humanity into the life of God:

we pray for your brothers and sisters in need, distress or sorrow …

Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, pioneer of our salvation, bringing us to your glory through your death and resurrection:
we pray for all who are dying, that they may trust in your promises …

Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, Lord of all things, ascended far above the heavens and filling the universe:
we pray for ourselves and all who receive your gifts for work in your service …

Lord, graciously hear us.

Jesus Christ, first-fruits of the new creation, keep the Church in the unity of the Spirit
and in the bond of peace, until you bring the whole created order to worship at your feet;
for you are alive and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.


Jesus says: ‘Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.
If you love me, rejoice because I am going to the Father’.

Alleluia! The peace of our risen, ascended Lord be always with you.
and with all our sisters and brothers, near and far. Alleluia!

We share a sign of peace with all people of faith throughout the world, by clasping our hands together and bowing our heads saying the word “Shalom”, peace.

Lord, enthroned in heavenly splendour, first-begotten from the dead,
thou alone, our strong defender, liftest up thy people’s head.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Jesu, true and living bread.

Here our humblest homage pay we, here in loving reverence bow;
here for faith’s discernment pray we, lest we fail to know thee now.
Alleluia! Alleluia! Thou art here, we ask not how.

Though the lowliest form doth veil thee as of old in Bethlehem,
here as there thine angels hail thee, branch and flower of Jesse’s stem.
Alleluia! Alleluia! We in worship join with them.

Paschal lamb, thine offering, finished once for all when thou wast slain,
in its fullness undiminished shall for evermore remain,
Alleluia! Alleluia! Cleansing souls from every stain.

Life-imparting heavenly manna, stricken rock with streaming side,
heaven and earth with loud hosanna worship thee, the lamb who died,
Alleluia! Alleluia! Risen, ascended, glorified!


Gracious God, we welcome your presence with us. May the table at which we share, nourish our bodies, hearts and minds, and may our spirits be refreshed. As we live in the light of your presence, with us now and at all times and places. Amen.

Blessed be God, by whose grace creation is renewed,
by whose love heaven is opened, by whose mercy we offer our sacrifice of praise.
Blessed be God for ever.

Take and eat a piece of the bread. If you are with another, give the bread to each other. As you give and receive the bread, say this prayer:

As we break this bread, and as we share it, we thank you, God, that you give us this day our daily bread.
For the food which delights and nourishes us and for the companionship that sustains us as your people.

Drink a sip of the wine or juice. If you are with another, give the wine to each other. As you give and receive the wine, say this prayer:

We thank you for drink to quench our thirst and for the Living Water with which you surprise and enrich and transform our lives.
We give thanks for this feast at which all can share, though separated now. A foretaste of the kingdom of heaven. Amen.

As our Saviour taught us, so we pray:

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.
Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.

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

HYMN (said or sung)

The head that once was crowned with thorns
is crowned with glory now:
a royal diadem adorns the
mighty victor’s brow.

The highest place that heaven affords
is his, is his by right,
the King of kings, and Lord of lords,
and heaven’s eternal light;

The joy of all who dwell above,
the joy of all below,
to whom he manifests his love,
and grants his name to know.

To them the cross, with all its shame,
with all its grace, is given:
their name an everlasting name,
their joy the joy of heaven.

They suffer with their Lord below,
they reign with him above;
their profit and their joy to know
the mystery of his love.

The cross he bore is life and health,
though shame and death to him;
his people’s hope, his people’s wealth,
their everlasting theme.

Lord Jesus our Saviour,
in your glorious ascension
you have raised our humanity to the heights of your throne,
and have fed us with the bread of heaven:
mercifully grant that, nourished with such spiritual blessings,
we may set our hearts and mind on the things that are above;
where you dwell with the Father and the Spirit,
one God, through all eternity. Amen.

Jesus, Bread of Life, bless all that we offer in your name:
Our prayers and our giving, our action and our concern
As your love has held us
we rest in you
As your love has called us
we look ahead with courage
As your love has blessed us
we go forward in hope


May Christ triumphant, reigning at God’s right hand, fill us with the joy of his presence.

Let us go in the peace of Christ, and in the good news of his victory.
Thanks be to God, Alleluia!