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Penhill Benefice - Services

Penhill Benefice

Living and Sharing the Love of Jesus Christ in the Community

How to share in worship wherever you are


Our churches can only be opened under strict conditions in accordance with guidance from the government and the Diocese of Leeds.

Face coverings must be worn in church, along with social distancing and the use of sanitiser. Sanitiser is available immediately inside the churches as well as the means to provide details confidentially for test and trace. Do continue to find rhythms that include worship as we continue to navigate this pandemic. 

Well here we are - 2021!
May God bless us in this New Year with renewed faith, hope and love!

It's clear the pandemic is currently at it's most severe, and numbers of infections locally are also rising rapidly. Once again the instruction is 'Stay home, save lives'.

Sadly, it seems we should now suspend physical services - and for the time being, fall back again on the phone and zoom provision. (There will be further updates as this is discussed by the PCCs in the benefice.)

The resources at Daily Hope continue to develop and grow - simply phone 0800 804 8044 and follow the options. It is an automated line of recorded resources. For the Daily Hope prayer phone line click here.

 A healthy and happy new year to all!

Rev Tom Ringland

Sunday 10th January 2021 – The Baptism of Christ

with sermon

Opening Prayer
All: Come, Holy Spirit,
fill the hearts of your faithful people,
and kindle in us the fire of your love;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,

Opening sentence
Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light.
Genesis 1:3

O Lord, open our lips
All: and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Your light springs up for the righteous
All: and all the peoples have seen your glory.

All: Eternal God, source of all blessing,
help us to worship you now
with all our heart and mind and strength;
for you alone are God,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
for ever and ever.

The night has passed, and the day lies open before us;
let us pray with one heart and mind.

As we rejoice in the gift of this new day,
so may the light of your presence, O God,
set our hearts on fire with love for you;
now and for ever.
All: Amen.

Hymn  (Music)

On Jordan’s bank the Baptist’s cry
sung by St Martin’s Voices

1 On Jordan's bank the Baptist's cry
announces that the Lord is nigh;
come then and hearken, for he brings
glad tidings from the King of kings!

2 Then cleansed be every Christian breast,
and furnished for so great a guest.
Yea, let us each our hearts prepare
for Christ to come and enter there.

3 For thou art our salvation, Lord,
our refuge, and our great reward;
without thy grace our souls must fade
and wither like a flower decayed.

4 Stretch forth thine hand, to heal our sore,
and make us rise to fall no more;
once more upon thy people shine,
and fill the world with love divine.

5 All praise, eternal Son, to thee
whose advent sets thy people free,
whom, with the Father, we adore,
and Spirit bless, for evermore.
Jordanis oras praevia Charles Coffin (1676-1749)
Translated John Chandler (1806-1876)

Invitation to Confession

Because God was merciful,
he saved us through the water of rebirth
and the renewing power of the Holy Spirit.
But through sin we have fallen away from our baptism.
Let us return to the Lord and renew our faith in his promises
by confessing our sins in penitence.
Titus 3.5


We confess to you our selfishness and lack of love:
fill us with your Spirit.
Lord, have mercy.
All: Lord, have mercy.

We confess to you our fear and failure in sharing our faith:
fill us with your Spirit.
Christ, have mercy.
All: Christ, have mercy.

We confess to you our stubbornness and lack of trust:
fill us with your Spirit.
Lord, have mercy.
All: Lord, have mercy.

 God’s Forgiveness

The almighty and merciful Lord
grant you pardon and forgiveness of all your sins,
time for amendment of life,
and the grace and strength of the Holy Spirit.
All: Amen.

The Word of God

Acts 19.1-7 New Revised Standard Version
19While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul passed through the inland regions and came to Ephesus, where he found some disciples. 2He said to them, ‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers?’ They replied, ‘No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.’ 3Then he said, ‘Into what then were you baptized?’ They answered, ‘Into John’s baptism.’ 4Paul said, ‘John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, in Jesus.’ 5On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6When Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied— 7altogether there were about twelve of them.

Mark 1:4-11 New Revised Standard Version
4John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. 6Now John was clothed with camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. 7He proclaimed, ‘The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals. 8I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.’
9 In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. 11And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.’

Sermon - Rev Penny Yeadon

John the Baptist seems to have been making a regular appearance at our services over the past few weeks;
The Second Sunday of Advent looked at who he was not …
The Third Sunday of Advent saw us remembering him as the ‘wild man’ who foretold the coming of the Saviour
And today as we celebrate the Baptism of Christ we meet him again with his ministry of repentance and baptism.
At first glance, camel-hair clothing and eating locusts sounds less like scripture than like a challenge on ‘I’m a celebrity: get me out of here. But John’s Baptism of Jesus marks the beginning of the Jesus’ ministry.
In the story the Gospels tell, of the life of Jesus, there are two moments when we see Jesus ‘as he is on the other side’.
Jesus we are told, lives in two worlds at once. He is the eternal Son of God in heaven, and at the same time he is the human Jesus.
The Gospel writers know this because they are writing their accounts of his life after the resurrection. Their experience of Jesus’ death and resurrection had led them to believe that he is more than human. So they put into their stories brief moments when heaven and earth meet, moments which show the readers of the Gospels that something extraordinary is happening here, that Jesus is someone special.
Today we hear of those moments, in Mark’s version. John the Baptist has been out and about in the wild places around the river Jordan for a while and had begun to attract crowds. People looking for something new, something that will distract them from their dreary lives under Roman occupation. John offers a ministry of repentance, a new start.
Something that many look for at the beginning of a new year; whether that is to eat less meat, drink less alcohol, exercise more or find something that is good for our mental health. – This year perhaps more than any other in our lifetime we are looking for a new start …

In John the Baptist they recognise God at work.
John himself, though, knows that he is only the beginning of something. The ancient prophecies speak of a forerunner, one whose presence and preaching will show that God is coming.
With benefit of hindsight, that is how the Gospels present John to us, as the one who paves the way for the arrival of Jesus.
And so as Jesus appears among the Crowds and is baptised by John. John’s ministry comes to an end, Jesus ministry begins.
But we, the readers, are told more. We are told that as he is baptised Jesus sees the sky open up and the Spirit fly down to him like a dove. And he hears a voice saying “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”
The next time these words will be spoken will be on the mountain of transfiguration, when Jesus begins teaching his disciples about mission and destiny.
Both of these stories are about moments when two worlds, heaven and earth, meet, and Jesus is revealed, for a moment, as he is on the other side.
Mark in his Gospel tells this story in quite solemn language, echoing the Old Testament: ‘This is how it happened; he saw the heavens open’.
Tom Wright in his commentary on Mark suggests that Mark deliberately wrote it with these biblical roots to ensure his readers realized what ‘seeing heavens opened’ means.
It doesn’t mean that Jesus saw a little door ajar miles up in the sky. Heaven in the bible often means God’s dimension behind ordinary reality. Its more as though an invisible curtain, right in front of us, was suddenly pulled back, so that instead of trees and flowers and buildings, or in Jesus’ case, the river, the sandy desert and the crowds, we are standing in the presence of a different reality altogether.
A good deal of Christian faith is about learning to live by this different reality even when we can’t see it. Which I think is a challenge for many of us, especially, in these extraordinary times.
Tom Wright describes it as; ‘sometimes at decisive and climatic moments, the curtain is drawn back and we see, or hear, what’s really going on;
But most of the time we walk by faith, not by sight. Mark is saying to his readers – look at the whole story, look at Jesus life, and learn to see and hear in it the heavenly vision, the heavenly voice addressing the words ‘ you are my son, my daughter, the beloved; with you I am well pleased”, to us as individuals.
Let them change us; mould us makes us into the person God wants us to be and discover in the story the normally hidden heavenly dimension of God’s world.
If we see God as a bully or an angry threatening parent ready to yell at us, slam the door on us or kick us out onto the street because we haven’t made the grade then we fall at the first hurdle but if we remember the voice that spoke those powerful words of love we will find a way through whatever is thrown at us.
Jesus could only tread the path that was set for him because he had heard the words of love, the words of life and truly believed that his beloved Father was watching over him, was there with him, loving him, acting through him, pouring out his Spirit all the time in and through him.
That is the hope we have as Christians, and as Tom’s opening sentence in his email, sending today’s service, taken from Ephesians says “pray for your brother and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up” and we will see the light and hope of God.

Confession of Faith

Let us declare our faith in God.
All: We believe in God the Father,
from whom every family
in heaven and on earth is named.
We believe in God the Son,
who lives in our hearts through faith,
and fills us with his love.
We believe in God the Holy Spirit,
who strengthens us
with power from on high.
We believe in one God;
Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Prayers of Intercession
To the bidding:
Lord, in your mercy
We respond:
Hear our prayer.

(See above for Daily Hope recordings.)

The Collect

Eternal Father,
who at the baptism of Jesus
revealed him to be your Son,
anointing him with the Holy Spirit:
grant to us, who are born again by water and the Spirit,
that we may be faithful to our calling as your adopted children;
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.
All: Amen

The Lord’s Prayer
Let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us:

All: 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.

Hymn (Music)
Thou whose almighty word
sung by St Martin’s Voices

1 Thou whose almighty word
chaos and darkness heard,
and took their flight;
hear us, we humbly pray,
and where the Gospel-day
sheds not its glorious ray,
let there be light.

2 Thou, who didst come to bring
on thy redeeming wing
healing and sight,
health to the sick in mind,
sight to the inly blind,
O now to all mankind
let there be light.

3 Spirit of truth and love,
life-giving, holy Dove,
speed forth thy flight;
move o'er the water's face,
bearing the lamp of grace,
and in earth's darkest place
let there be light.

4 Blessed and holy Three,
glorious Trinity,
Wisdom, Love, Might;
boundless as ocean's tide
rolling in fullest pride,
through the world far and wide
let there be light.

John Marriott (1780-1825), Thomas Raffles (1788-1863)

The Blessing

May God, who in Christ gives us a spring of water
welling up to eternal life,
perfect in you the image of his glory;
and the blessing of God Almighty,
the Father, Son and Holy Spirit
be with you now and always.
All: Amen