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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 condition in accordance with guidance from the government and the Diocese of Leeds. For details about what can be done regarding funerals, emergency baptisms etc scroll down to March 21 on the News/Events page.  See that page also for information about what is being done to open our churches for prayer,  and some excerpts from the latest Penhil Beacon and how to receive a full copy. 

Revd Tom Ringland: Service for Sunday July 5

The Fourth Sunday after Trinity

 A warm welcome to our worship resources for this Sunday!
We’re delighted to be welcoming our Area Bishop, Bishop Helen-Ann Hartley to both our 9.30 phone service at 10.30 using ‘Zoom’.
We are thus reminded of our place within the wider Diocese, and indeed the global church, and pray for one another as we respond to the challenges of safely opening our buildings once again for private prayer and congregational worship.
We pray for our United Kingdom, and especially the communities of England, that we may act sensibly with the new freedoms to drink and eat together from this weekend.
We pray for our leaders as they seek to guide, support and encourage in turbulent times. May they be granted ever cheerful hearts in the midst of the current stresses.
And for ourselves, with the Psalmist we affirm …
“I put my trust in your steadfast love;
my heart will rejoice in your salvation”.
Psalm 13:5
[opening sentences from the blue booklet: ‘Prayers during the coronavirus outbreak’, available from Christine Gard or Tom]
Opening Prayer
Eternal God, source of all blessing,
help us to worship you
with all our heart and mind and strength;
for you alone are God,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
for ever and ever.
Hymn        click on   Music on YouTube;  or here for MP3
1          Longing for light, we wait in darkness.
            Longing for truth, we turn to You.
            Make us Your own, Your holy people;
            light for the world to see.
                        Christ, be our light!
                        Shine in our hearts,
                        shine through the darkness.
                        Christ, be our light!
                        Shine in Your church
                        gathered today.
2          Longing for peace, our world is troubled.
            Longing for hope, many despair.
            Your word alone has power to save us.
            Make us Your living voice.
                        Christ, be our light . . .
3          Longing for food, many are hungry.
            Longing for water, many still thirst.
            Make us Your bread, broken for others,
            shared until all are fed.
                        Christ, be our light . . .
4          Longing for shelter, many are homeless,
            longing for warmth, many are cold.
            Make us Your building, sheltering others,
            walls made of living stone.
                        Christ, be our light . . .
5          Many the gifts, many the people,
            many the hearts that yearn to belong.
            Let us be servants to one another,
            making Your kingdom come.
                        Christ, be our light . . .
Bernadette Farrell
© OCP Publications
Used with permission: Copyright License No: 2326066. 
Invitation to Confession
Jesus says,
‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand.’
So let us turn away from our sin and turn to Christ,
confessing our sins in penitence and faith.
Lord Jesus Christ, we confess we have failed you as did your first disciples.
We ask for your mercy and your help.
Our selfishness betrays you:
Lord, forgive us.
All        Christ have mercy.
We fail to share the pain of your suffering:
Lord, forgive us.
All        Christ have mercy.
We run away from those who abuse you:
Lord, forgive us.
All        Christ have mercy.
We are afraid of being known to belong to you:
Lord, forgive us.
All        Christ have mercy.
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.
The Psalm for the day is Psalm 45:10-end
Romans 7:15-25a                 New Revised Standard Version,
15 I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16 Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. 17 But in fact it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. 20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me.
21 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies close at hand. 22 For I delight in the law of God in my inmost self, 23 but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind, making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Matthew 11:16-19,25-30 New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised (NRSVA)
16 ‘But to what will I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the market-places and calling to one another,
17 “We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we wailed, and you did not mourn.”
18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, “He has a demon”; 19 the Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, “Look, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax-collectors and sinners!” Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds.’
25 At that time Jesus said, ‘I thank[b] you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; 26 yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. 27 All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
28 ‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’ 
Sermon – Bishop Helen-Ann Hartley, Bishop of Ripon
'My Yoke is easy'

One of the things I have enjoyed about the past few months (maybe it’s the thing now that I come to think about it) is that I’ve been doing much less driving around. I’m not convinced that the rest of that sentence which is ‘and I’ve been doing a lot more Zooming in my office in online meetings and services’ is a highlight of the past months, although there have been some definite benefits to this medium of interaction. But I have seized new opportunities to make the most of the time that has been gifted to me by not having to travel so much. One of the features of my weekly routine has been running. I am (it must be said) a steady runner, and it has been a joy to discover new paths along the riverbank, and parts of Ripon that connect, the sort of discovery you can only make with your feet on the ground rather than your feet on the pedals of the car. Occasionally, my runs take me along the edges of fields, and I have observed the change of seasons and the abundant growth of trees, plants, and new shoots springing up from the earth. Maybe you have noticed nature a little more than usual over the past months? It occurred to me that while we are not currently singing communally, the dawn chorus presents a wonderful symphony of sound. I have paid closer attention to birdsong of late, and have been grateful for that.

In his wonderful book Native. Life in a Vanishing Landscape (2020, Birlinn, p.53), Patrick Laurie writes about his reconnection with the patterns of farming in his native Galloway in southern Scotland. He says: ‘Agriculture really knows how to rub your nose in a place, and you learn to depend on it”. There’s a word for this, and I talked a little about it in an article for Friday’s Yorkshire Post where I said this: “A word that keeps appearing on my radar is ‘hefted’, a word that is usually applied to land that a farm animal becomes attached to. Human beings (I went on to say), like animals, are all rooted somewhere, and it’s worth giving some thought to where we feel we are rooted or connected to. Even if we don’t feel we belong, we all have a story that enables us to frame our identity. Sometimes it’s easy to give voice to that, sometimes not. Stories can be joyful but they can also be full of pain, and we’ve seen plenty examples of that recently”. I went on to reflect on the ‘hefted’ nature of local businesses near where we live’; shops that often come with family stories and histories. Maybe you can think of examples of this where you live; and maybe too some of those businesses or farms have either gone or passed into new hands? I think of the famous Dales Fish and Chip van that makes its way round villages on Wednesdays, and how it marks out places in its weekly journeys!

Now why all this preamble about place and identity? Both our readings this morning speak to those themes, and as such are very contemporary in tone. Paul’s letter to the Romans is thought to be his last; it’s certainly (as one commentator puts it) his ‘longest and most influential letter. It is also very hard going, and the translator faces a formidably difficult task’ (Nick King in his translation notes to his New Testament, freshly translated [Kevin Mayhew, 2004, p.339]). Our passage we listened to this morning contains some brain-aching logic. It’s probably one of my favourite passages in the New Testament because I feel for Paul in his wrestling with understanding his faith. Maybe it’s why I am drawn to Paul, and his search for identity in Christ. Our faith (my faith) is something that we need to work at, to constantly keep asking questions about. The answer that Paul reaches is in many ways so obvious. He writes: ‘Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!’ (v.25a). Jesus is always the answer, but we need to consider why that is the case with every fibre of our being each and every day. That takes us neatly to our Gospel: Matthew 11.

There is I think perhaps no better Gospel reading at this point in time (Jesus’ words about taking on our burdens is resonant with how many are feeling). Months of lockdown and isolation coupled with intense new learnings (like online technology and delivering sermons on the telephone) along with pastoral care have left many of us (clergy and laity alike) both energised and exhausted. Of significance is the broader thrust of Jesus’ message within which the opening verses of this Gospel passage are placed: the sense of crisis and urgency that comes with the proclamation of the Kingdom. This proclamation requires a response. When we listen to the Gospel, we can imagine a scene that is vibrant and noisy (to remind us, in verse 16-17: ‘It is like children sitting in the market-places and calling to one another, ‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we wailed, and you did not mourn’”). The point here is not about childishness (as if we looking down on immaturity). The point is that we are being asked to participate in the action, even if that means we have to watch it for a while to work out where and how we fit in (this is a point Jim Francis makes in his book Adults as children: images of childhood in the ancient world and the New Testament, 2006, Peter Lang). The second part of the Gospel reading also references children, and picks up an element of discernment and wisdom that the first example also provides. Perhaps the most striking element here is something that we miss in our English translations. Nick King observes that: ‘Jesus’ yoke is ‘kindly’ (the word will actually have sounded like ‘Christ’ in Greek; p.41)’. Jesus’ own Christlikeness is ‘kindly’; an invitation for us to be like Jesus in this stance.

Kindness has been much in evidence in recent months, but so has the opposite. Human beings are hard-wired for relationships, with all the ups and downs and complexities that accompany us along the way. Our readings this morning remind us of aspects of the inheritance of our faith: Paul’s turmoil and joy as he sought to reconcile his Jewish identity with his belief in the risen Jesus; Jesus’ prayer to his Father and affirmation of his own divine identity. We ask questions about our own lives and of those close to us, and our communities, and all the while the answer awaits: ‘Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!’ (v.25a).

Confession of Faith
Do you believe and trust in God the Father,
source of all being and life,
the one for whom we exist?
All        We believe and trust in him.
Do you believe and trust in God the Son,
who took our human nature,
died for us and rose again?
All        We believe and trust in him.
Do you believe and trust in God the Holy Spirit,
who gives life to the people of God
and makes Christ known in the world?
All         We believe and trust in him.
This is the faith of the Church.
All         This is our faith.
We believe and trust in one God,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Prayers of Intercession
(led this week by Jayne Foster at 9.30 
and at 10.30 by Ian Ferguson, Please also refer to the ‘Worship at Home’ booklet)
You may also like to phone the [free] C of E 'Daily Hope phone line ...0800 804 8044.
Collect for the 4th Sunday after Trinity
O God, the protector of all who trust in you,
without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy:
increase and multiply upon us your mercy;
that with you as our ruler and guide
we may so pass through things temporal
that we lose not our hold on things eternal;
grant this, heavenly Father,
for our Lord Jesus Christ’s sake,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
The Lord’s Prayer        
  [see the blue worship booklet]
Hymn       click on Music
1     Dear Lord and Father of mankind,
       forgive our foolish ways;
       re-clothe us in our rightful mind;
       in purer lives Thy service find,
       in deeper reverence, praise.
2     In simple trust like theirs who heard,
       beside the Syrian sea,
       the gracious calling of the Lord,
       let us, like them, without a word
       rise up and follow Thee.
3     Drop Thy still dews of quietness,
       till all our strivings cease;
       take from our souls the strain and stress,
       and let our ordered lives confess
       the beauty of Thy peace.
4     Breathe through the heats of our desire
       Thy coolness and Thy balm;
       let sense be dumb, let flesh retire;
       speak through the earthquake, wind, and fire,
       O still small voice of calm!
John Greenleaf Whittier (1807–92)
[From the blue booklet]
The God of all grace,
who called you to his eternal glory in Christ Jesus,
establish, strengthen and settle you in the faith;
and the blessing …