Order of service

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The Gathering

Worship begins with the sound of a bell and the Choir sings an introit.

Tomorrow shall be my dancing day:
I would my true love did so chance
To see the legend of my play,
To call my true love to my dance:

Sing, O my love, O my love, my love, my love;
This have I done for my true love.

Then was I born of a virgin pure,
Of her I took fleshly substance;
Thus was I knit to man’s nature,
To call my true love to my dance: …

Then afterwards baptised, I was,
The Holy Ghost on me did glance,
My Father’s voice heard from above,
To call my true love to my dance: …

Words & Music: English traditional carol arr. G. H. Taylor

In the name of the Father,
and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.


The Greeting

The Lord of glory be with you.

The Lord bless you.

Words of Welcome

Gloria in Excelsis

Glory to God in the highest,
and peace to his people on earth.

Lord God, heavenly King,
almighty God and Father,
we worship you, we give you thanks,
we praise you for your glory.

Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father,
Lord God, Lamb of God,
you take away the sin of the world:
have mercy on us;
you are seated at the right hand of the Father:
receive our prayer.

For you alone are the Holy One,
you alone are the Lord,
you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ,
with the Holy Spirit,
in the glory of God the Father.

The Collect

The president introduces a period of silent prayer with the words ‘Let us pray’.

Heavenly Father,
at the Jordan you revealed Jesus as your Son:
may we recognise him as our Lord
and know ourselves to be your beloved children;
through Jesus Christ our Saviour.


The Liturgy of the Word

A reading from Genesis.

In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.

Genesis 1.1-5

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Gospel Reading

The Choir sings an acclamation to herald the Gospel.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.

Matthew 3.17

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Mark.

Glory to you, O Lord.

John the baptiser appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptised by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. Now John was clothed with camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. He 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. I have baptised you with water; but he will baptise you with the Holy Spirit.”

In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptised by John in the Jordan. And 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. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”

Mark 1.4-11

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, O Christ.


Thanksgiving for Holy Baptism

Water is poured into the font with these words:

God in Christ gives us water welling up for eternal life.
With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.

Lord, give us this water and we shall thirst no more.

The president stands before the water and says:

Praise God who made heaven and earth,

who keeps his promise for ever.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give thanks and praise.

Father, we give you thanks and praise
for your gift of water in creation;
for your Spirit, sweeping over the waters,
bringing light and life;
for your Son Jesus Christ our Lord, baptised in the river Jordan.

We bless you for your new creation,
brought to birth by water and the Spirit,
and for your grace bestowed upon us your children,
washing away our sins.

May your holy and life-giving Spirit move upon these waters.
Restore through them the beauty of your creation,
and bring those who are baptised
to new birth in the family of your Church.

Drown sin in the waters of judgement,
anoint your children with power from on high,
and make them one with Christ in the freedom of your kingdom.
For all might, majesty, dominion and power are yours,
now and for ever.

Alleluia. Amen.

The Prayer over the Water is followed by this act of penitence and dedication.

God of truth,
you are faithful to the covenant you have made with us;
look in mercy on your people.

From all our sins, O Lord:

wash us, and we shall be clean.

We have broken the pledges of our baptism,
and failed to be your disciples.

From all our sins, O Lord:

wash us, and we shall be clean.

Though we are saved by Christ
and dead to sin through the deep waters of death,
we have not witnessed to his grace by our manner of life.

From all our sins, O Lord:

wash us, and we shall be clean.

We have shown indifference to those in need
and have been afraid to stand up for justice and truth.

From all our sins, O Lord:

wash us, and we shall be clean.

We have been slow to forgive, and have failed to remember
your repeated forgiveness of our sins.

From all our sins, O Lord:

wash us, and we shall be clean.

Today we rejoice and give thanks
because your Son humbled himself to be baptised in the Jordan.
Through the waters you have given us the mystery of baptism
for the remission of our sins.

From all our sins, O Lord:

wash us, and we shall be clean.

Through water and Spirit
you give us new life as the people of God,
and pour out upon us the gifts of your new covenant.

From all our sins, O Lord:

wash us, and we shall be clean.

Almighty God,
in our baptism you have consecrated us
to be temples of your Holy Spirit.
May we, whom you have counted worthy,
nurture your indwelling Spirit with a lively faith,
and worship you with upright lives;
through Jesus Christ.


The president dips his finger in the holy water, signs himself with the sign of the cross on behalf of us all.  

May almighty God have mercy on us,
forgive us our sins,
and bring us to everlasting life,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Prayers of Intercession

The response to the bidding.

Lord, in your mercy.

Hear our prayer.

Then at the end.

Merciful Father,

Accept these prayers for the sake of your Son,
Our Saviour Jesus Christ.

The Liturgy of the Sacrament 

The Peace

God has made us one in Christ.
He has set his seal upon us and, as a pledge of what is to come, has given the Spirit to dwell in our hearts.

cf 2 Corinthians 1.22

The peace of the Lord be always with you

and also with you.

Preparation of the Table

The table is prepared and bread and wine are placed upon it.   

A Hymn is sung by the Choir.

I heard the voice of Jesus say,
‘Come unto me and rest;
Lay down, thou weary one, lay down
Thy head upon my breast.’
I came to Jesus as I was,
So weary, worn and sad;
I found in him a resting place,
And he has made me glad.

I heard the voice of Jesus say,
‘Behold, I freely give
The living water, thirsty one;
Stop down and drink and live.’
I came to Jesus, and I drank
Of that life-giving stream;
My thirst was quenched, my soul revived,
And now I live in him.

I heard the voice of Jesus say,
‘I am the dark world’s light;
Look unto me, thy morn shall rise,
And all thy day be bright.’
I looked to Jesus, and I found
In him my star, my sun;
And in that light of life I’ll walk
Till travelling days are done.

Words: H. Bonar
Music: English traditional melody arr. R. Vaughan Williams

Taking of the Bread and Wine

Open the heavens, Holy Spirit,
for us to see Jesus interceding for us;
may we be willing to share his baptism,
ready to share his cup and strengthened to serve him for ever.


The Eucharistic Prayer

The Lord is here.

His Spirit is with us.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give thanks and praise.

It is truly right and just,
our duty and our salvation,
always and everywhere to give you thanks,
holy Father, almighty and eternal God.
You celebrated your new gift of baptism
in signs and wonders at the Jordan.
Your voice was heard from heaven
to awaken faith in the presence among us
of your Word made flesh.
Your Spirit was seen as a dove,
revealing Jesus as your servant,
and anointing him with the oil of gladness
to preach the good news to the poor.
Therefore, as we celebrate the union of earth and heaven,
we rejoice to echo the song of the angels in heaven
for ever praising you and saying:

Holy, holy, holy Lord,
God of power and might,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.

Lord, you are holy indeed, the source of all holiness;
grant that by the power of your Holy Spirit,
and according to your holy will,
these gifts of bread and wine
may be to us the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ;

who, in the same night that he was betrayed,
took bread and gave you thanks;
he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying:
Take, eat; this is my body which is given for you;
do this in remembrance of me.

In the same way, after supper
he took the cup and gave you thanks;
he gave it to them, saying:
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.
Do this, as often as you drink it,
in remembrance of me.

Jesus Christ is Lord:

Lord, by your cross and resurrection
you have set us free.
You are the Saviour of the world.

And so, Father, calling to mind his death on the cross,
his perfect sacrifice made once for the sins of the whole world;
rejoicing in his mighty resurrection and glorious ascension,
and looking for his coming in glory,
we celebrate this memorial of our redemption.
As we offer you this our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving,
we bring before you this bread and this cup
and we thank you for counting us worthy
to stand in your presence and serve you.

Send the Holy Spirit on your people
and gather into one in your kingdom
all who share this one bread and one cup,
so that we, in the company of Blessed Mary,
St. John the Baptist and all the saints,
may praise and glorify you for ever,
through Jesus Christ our Lord;

By whom, and with whom, and in whom,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
all honour and glory be yours, almighty Father,
for ever and ever.


Silence is kept.

The Lord’s Prayer

Believing the promises of God,
let us pray with confidence as our Saviour has taught us.

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.

Breaking of the Bread

The president breaks the consecrated bread.

We break the bread of life,
and that life is the light of the world.

God here among us,
light in the midst of us,
bring us to light and life.

Invitation to Communion

God’s holy gifts
for God’s holy people.

Jesus Christ is holy,
Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

The president and people receive communion.

At the giving of communion, the president receives communion in both kinds. The words of distribution (“The body and blood of Christ, broken/shed for us all”) are spoken to the congregation, and all who intend to receive reply with “Amen”.

At the distribution, Holy Communion is administered without speaking. The consecrated bread is dropped into the hands of communicants.   To reduce the risk of spreading any infection, communion will be in one kind (bread) only. This is still considered to be complete communion by the Church of England.

For those at home it might be helpful to use this prayer during the distribution

in these days of mercy,
make us quiet and prayerful;
in these days of challenge,
make us stronger in you;
in these days of emptiness,
take possession of us;
in these days of waiting,
open our hearts to the mystery of your cross.


Angela Ashwin

The Post Communion Prayer

The president introduces a time of silent prayer with the words
‘Let us pray’.

Lord of all time and eternity,
you opened the heavens and revealed yourself as Father
in the baptism of Jesus your beloved Son:
by the power of your Spirit
complete the heavenly work of our rebirth
through the waters of the new creation;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.


A Hymn is sung by the Choir.

God is working his purpose out
As year succeeds to year.
God is working his purpose out,
And the day is drawing near.
Nearer and nearer draws the time,
The time that shall surely be,
When the earth shall be filled with the glory of God
As the waters cover the sea.

How can we do the work of God,
How prosper and increase
Harmony in the human race
And the reign of perfect peace?
What can we do to urge the time,
The time that shall surely be,
When the earth shall be filled with the glory of God
As the waters cover the sea?

March we forth in the strength of God,
His banner is unfurled;
Let the light of the Gospel shine
In the darkness of the world:
Strengthen the weary, heal the sick
And set every captive free,
That the earth shall be filled with the glory of God
As the waters cover the sea.

Words: A. C. Ainger adapted by M. Forster
Music: M. Kingham

The Dismissal


The Father’s voice bears witness to the Son.

God is revealed to us.

The Son bows his head beneath the waters of baptism.
God is revealed to us.

The Spirit as a dove descends from heaven.

God is revealed to us.

Submitting to John’s baptism, Christ delivers us from bondage.

God is revealed to us.

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, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among you and remain with you always.


The Dismissal

We have come to Christ, the living water,
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

In the name of Christ. Amen.

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Tomorrow shall be my dancing day
© 2018 G H Taylor

I heard the voice of Jesus say
© Oxford University Press

God is working his purpose out
© Kevin Mayhew Ltd

8 Bars in A major
© Kevin Mayhew Ltd

32 Bars in A major
© Kevin Mayhew Ltd

CCL licence: 668063