Order of service
look with mercy on this your family
for which our Lord Jesus was content to be betrayed
and given up into the hands of sinners
and to suffer death upon the cross;
who is alive and glorified with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
The Liturgy of the Word
A reading from the prophecy of Isaiah.
See, my servant shall prosper; he shall be exalted and lifted up, and shall be very high. Just as there were many who were astonished at him so marred was his appearance, beyond human semblance, and his form beyond that of mortals so he shall startle many nations; kings shall shut their mouths because of him; for that which had not been told them they shall see, and that which they had not heard they shall contemplate. Who has believed what we have heard? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or majesty that we should look at him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by others; a man of suffering and acquainted with infirmity; and as one from whom others hide their faces he was despised, and we held him of no account. Surely he has borne our infirmities and carried our diseases; yet we accounted him stricken, struck down by God, and afflicted.
But he was wounded for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the punishment that made us whole, and by his bruises we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have all turned to our own way, and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth. By a perversion of justice he was taken away. Who could have imagined his future? For he was cut off from the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people. They made his grave with the wicked and his tomb with the rich, although he had done no violence, and there was no deceit in his mouth.
Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him with pain. When you make his life an offering for sin, he shall see his offspring, and shall prolong his days; through him the will of the Lord shall prosper. Out of his anguish he shall see light; he shall find satisfaction through his knowledge. The righteous one, my servant, shall make many righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore I will allot him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out himself to death, and was numbered with the transgressors;Isiah 52: 13 – end of 53
yet he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
This is the word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me,
and are so far from my salvation,
from the words of my distress?
O my God, I cry in the daytime,
but you do not answer;
and by night also, but I find no rest.
Yet you are the Holy One,
enthroned upon the praises of Israel.
Our forebears trusted in you;
they trusted, and you delivered them.
They cried out to you and were delivered;
they put their trust in you and were not confounded.
But as for me, I am a worm and no man,
scorned by all and despised by the people.
All who see me laugh me to scorn;
they curl their lips and wag their heads, saying,
‘He trusted in the Lord; let him deliver him;
let him deliver him, if he delights in him.’
But it is you that took me out of the womb
and laid me safe upon my mother’s breast.
On you was I cast ever since I was born;
you are my God even from my mother’s womb.
Be not far from me, for trouble is near at hand
and there is none to help.
Mighty oxen come around me;
fat bulls of Bashan close me in on every side.
They gape upon me with their mouths,
as it were a ramping and a roaring lion.
I am poured out like water;
all my bones are out of joint;
my heart has become like wax
melting in the depths of my body.
My mouth is dried up like a potsherd;
my tongue cleaves to my gums;
you have laid me in the dust of death.
For the hounds are all about me;
the pack of evildoers close in on me;
they pierce my hands and my feet.
I can count all my bones;
they stand staring and looking upon me.
They divide my garments among them;
they cast lots for my clothing.
Be not far from me, O Lord;
you are my strength; hasten to help me.
Deliver my soul from the sword,
my poor life from the power of the dog.
Save me from the lion’s mouth,
from the horns of wild oxen.
You have answered me!
I will tell of your name to my people;
in the midst of the congregation will I praise you.
Praise the Lord, you that fear him;
O seed of Jacob, glorify him; stand in awe of him, O seed of Israel.
For he has not despised nor abhorred
the suffering of the poor;
neither has he hidden his face from them;
but when they cried to him he heard them.
From you comes my praise in the great congregation;
I will perform my vows in the presence of those that fear you.
The poor shall eat and be satisfied;
those who seek the Lord shall praise him;
their hearts shall live for ever.
All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord, and all the families of the nations shall bow before him.
For the kingdom is the Lord’s
and he rules over the nations.
How can those who sleep in the earth
bow down in worship,
or those who go down to the dust kneel before him?
He has saved my life for himself;
my descendants shall serve him;
this shall be told of the Lord for generations to come.
They shall come and make known his salvation,
to a people yet unborn, declaring that he, the Lord, has done it.
There is a green hill far away,
without a city wall,
where the dear Lord was crucified,
who died to save us all.
We may not know, we cannot tell,
what pains he had to bear,
but we believe it was for us
he hung and suffered there.
He died that we might be forgiv’n,
he died to make us good;
that we might go at last to heav’n,
saved by his precious blood.
There was no other good enough
to pay the price of sin;
he only could unlock the gate
of heav’n, and let us in.
O dearly, dearly has he loved,
and we must love him too,
and trust in his redeeming blood,
and try his works to do.
Words: Cecil Frances Alexander (1818-1895)
Music: William Horsley (1774-1858)
The Passion Reading
Hear the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John.
After they had eaten the supper, Jesus went out with his disciples across the Kidron valley to a place where there was a garden, which he and his disciples entered. Now Judas, who betrayed him, also knew the place, because Jesus often met there with his disciples. So Judas brought a detachment of soldiers together with police from the chief priests and the Pharisees, and they came there with lanterns and torches and weapons. Then Jesus, knowing all that was to happen to him, came forward and asked them, ‘For whom are you looking?’ They answered, ‘Jesus of Nazareth.‘ Jesus replied, ‘I am he.‘ Judas, who betrayed him, was standing with them. When Jesus said to them, ‘I am he,‘ they stepped back and fell to the ground. Again he asked them, ‘For whom are you looking?’ And they said, ‘Jesus of Nazareth.’ Jesus answered, ‘I told you that I am he. So if you are looking for me, let these men go.’ This was to fulfil the word that he had spoken, ‘I did not lose a single one of those whom you gave me.’ Then Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it, struck the high priest’s slave, and cut off his right ear. The slave’s name was Malchus. Jesus said to Peter, ‘Put your sword back into its sheath. Am I not to drink the cup that the Father has given me?’
So the soldiers, their officer, and the Jewish police arrested Jesus and bound him. First they took him to Annas, who was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the high priest that year. Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jews that it was better to have one person die for the people.
Simon Peter and another disciple followed Jesus. Since that disciple was known to the high priest, he went with Jesus into the courtyard of the high priest, but Peter was standing outside at the gate. So the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out, spoke to the woman who guarded the gate, and brought Peter in.
The woman said to Peter, ‘You are not also one of this man’s disciples, are you?’ He said, ‘I am not.’ Now the slaves and the police had made a charcoal fire because it was cold, and they were standing around it and warming themselves. Peter also was standing with them and warming himself.
Then the high priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and about his teaching. Jesus answered, ‘I have spoken openly to the world; I have always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all the Jews come together.
I have said nothing in secret. Why do you ask me? Ask those who heard what I said to them; they know what I said.’ When he had said this, one of the police standing nearby struck Jesus on the face, saying, ‘Is that how you answer the high priest?’ Jesus answered, ‘If I have spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong. But if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?’ Then Annas sent him bound to Caiaphas the high priest.
Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself. They asked him, ‘You are not also one of his disciples, are you?’ He denied it and said, ‘I am not.’ One of the slaves of the high priest, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, ‘Did I not see you in the garden with him?’ Again Peter denied it, and at that moment the cock crowed.
Then they took Jesus from Caiaphas to Pilate’s headquarters. It was early in the morning. They themselves did not enter the headquarters, so as to avoid ritual defilement and to be able to eat the Passover. So Pilate went out to them and said, ‘What accusation do you bring against this man?’
They answered, ‘If this man were not a criminal, we would not have handed him over to you.’ Pilate said to them, ‘Take him yourselves and judge him according to your law.‘ The Jews replied, ‘We are not permitted to put anyone to death.’
(This was to fulfil what Jesus had said when he indicated the kind of death he was to die.)
Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, ‘Are you the King of the Jews?’ Jesus answered, ‘Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?’ Pilate replied, ‘I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?’ Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.’ Pilate asked him, ‘So you are a king?’ Jesus answered, ‘You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.’ Pilate asked him, ‘What is truth?’
After he had said this, he went out to the Jewish leaders again and told them, ‘I find no case against him. But you have a custom that I release someone for you at the Passover. Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?’ They shouted in reply, ‘Not this man, but Barabbas!’ Now Barabbas was a bandit.
Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. And the soldiers wove a crown of thorns and put it on his head, and they dressed him in a purple robe.
They kept coming up to him, saying, ‘Hail, King of the Jews!’ and striking him on the face. Pilate went out again and said to them, ‘Look, I am bringing him out to you to let you know that I find no case against him.’ So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe.
Pilate said to them, ‘Here is the man!’ When the chief priests and the police saw him, they shouted, ‘Crucify him! Crucify him!’ Pilate said to them, ‘Take him yourselves and crucify him; I find no case against him.’
The Jews answered him, ‘We have a law, and according to that law he ought to die because he has claimed to be the Son of God.’
Now when Pilate heard this, he was more afraid than ever. He entered his headquarters again and asked Jesus, ‘Where are you from?’ But Jesus gave him no answer. Pilate therefore said to him, ‘Do you refuse to speak to me? Do you not know that I have power to release you, and power to crucify you?’ Jesus answered him, ‘You would have no power over me unless it had been given you from above; therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin.’ From then on Pilate tried to release him, but the Jews cried out, ‘If you release this man, you are no friend of the emperor. Everyone who claims to be a king sets himself against the emperor.’
When Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus outside and sat on the judge’s bench at a place called The Stone Pavement, or in Hebrew Gabbatha. Now it was the day of Preparation for the Passover; and it was about noon. He said to the Jews, ‘Here is your King!’ They cried out, ‘Away with him! Away with him! Crucify him!’ Pilate asked them, ‘Shall I crucify your King?’ The chief priests answered, ‘We have no king but the emperor.’ Then he handed him over to them to be crucified.
So they took Jesus; and carrying the cross by himself, he went out to what is called The Place of the Skull, which in Hebrew is called Golgotha. There they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, with Jesus between them. Pilate also had an inscription written and put on the cross. It read, ‘Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.’
Many of the Jews read this inscription, because the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, in Latin, and in Greek. Then the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, ‘Do not write, “The King of the Jews,” but, “This man said, I am King of the Jews.” Pilate answered, ‘What I have written I have written.’
When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his clothes and divided them into four parts, one for each soldier. They also took his tunic; now the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from the top. So they said to one another, ‘Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see who will get it.’
This was to fulfil what the scripture says, ‘They divided my clothes among themselves, and for my clothing they cast lots.’
And that is what the soldiers did. Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, here is your son.’ Then he said to the disciple, ‘Here is your mother.’ And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home.
After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfil the scripture), ‘I am thirsty.’ A jar full of sour wine was standing there.
So they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the wine, he said, ‘It is finished.’ Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
Since it was the day of Preparation, the Jews did not want the bodies left on the cross during the sabbath, especially because that sabbath was a day of great solemnity. So they asked Pilate to have the legs of the crucified men broken and the bodies removed.
Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who had been crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once blood and water came out.
(He who saw this has testified so that you also may believe. His testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth.) These things occurred so that the scripture might be fulfilled, ‘None of his bones shall be broken.’
And again another passage of scripture says, ‘They will look on the one whom they have pierced.’
After these things, Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, though a secret one because of his fear of the Jews, asked Pilate to let him take away the body of Jesus. Pilate gave him permission; so he came and removed his body. Nicodemus, who had at first come to Jesus by night, also came, bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, weighing about a hundred pounds. They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths, according to the burial custom of the Jews. Now there was a garden in the place where he was crucified, and in the garden there was a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid.
And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.John 18: 1 – 19, 42
This is the Passion of the Lord.
No response is made.
The Very Reverend Richard Giles
At the end of the address we hear two verses from an adapted version of the hymn ‘Love divine, all loves excelling’ during which a wooden cross is placed before the holy table.
Jesu, thou art all compassion,
pure unbounded love thou art;
visit us with thy salvation,
enter ev’ry trembling heart.
Stand we here with aweful sorrow,
this the saddest of our days,
come O Spirit shape our hearts now,
lost in wonder, love, and praise.
Words: Charles Wesley (1707-1788) and Matthew Peat
Music: John Stainer (1840-1901)
Silence is kept.
Acclamation of the Cross
We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you,
because by your holy cross
you have redeemed the world.
This is the wood of the cross,
on which hung the Saviour of the world.
Come, let us worship.
O Saviour of the world,
who by your cross and precious blood
have redeemed us,
save and help us, we humbly pray.
When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the Prince of Glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride.
Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast,
Save in the death of Christ, my God:
All the vain things that charm me most,
I sacrifice them to his blood.
See from his head, his hands, his feet,
Sorrow and love flow mingling down:
Did e’er such love and sorrow meet,
Or thorns compose so rich a crown?
Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were an off’ring far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.
Words: Isaac Watts (1674-1748)
Music: adapted by Edward Miller (1735-1807)
Prayers of Intercession
God sent his Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. Therefore we pray to our heavenly Father for people everywhere according to their needs.
Let us pray for the Church of God throughout the world: for unity in faith, in witness and in service, for bishops and other ministers, and those whom they serve, for Nick and Paul our bishops, and the people of this diocese, for all Christians in this place, for those to be baptised, for those who are mocked and persecuted for their faith, that God will confirm his Church in faith, increase it in love, and preserve it in peace.
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.
Let us pray for the nations of the world and their leaders: for Elizabeth our Queen and the Parliaments of this land, for those who administer the law and all who serve in public office,
for all who strive for justice and reconciliation, that by God’s help the world may live in peace and freedom.
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.
Let us pray for God’s ancient people, the Jews, the first to hear his
word: for greater understanding between Christian and Jew,
for the removal of our blindness and bitterness of heart, that
God will grant us grace to be faithful to his covenant and to grow in the love of his name.
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.
Let us pray for those who do not believe the gospel of Christ:
for those who have not heard the message of salvation, for all who have lost faith, for the contemptuous and scornful, for those who are enemies of Christ and persecute those who follow him, for all who deny the faith of Christ crucified, that God will open their hearts to the truth and lead them to faith and obedience.
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.
Let us pray for all those who suffer: for those who are deprived and oppressed, for all who are sick, for those in darkness, in doubt and in despair, in loneliness and in fear, for prisoners, captives and refugees, for the victims of false accusations and violence, for all at the point of death and those who watch beside them, that God in his mercy will sustain them with the knowledge of his love.
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.
Let us commend ourselves and all God’s children to his unfailing love, and pray for the grace of a holy life, that, with all who have died in the peace of Christ, we may come to the fullness of eternal life and the joy of the resurrection.
Lord, hear us.
Lord, graciously hear us.
O God of unchangeable power and eternal light,
look favourably on your whole Church,
that wonderful and sacred mystery,
and by the tranquil operation
of your perpetual providence
carry out the work of our salvation:
and let the whole world feel and see
that things which were cast down are being raised up
and things which had grown old are being made new
and that all things are returning to perfection
through him from whom they took their origin,
even Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
The Lord’s Prayer
Standing at the foot of the cross, as our Saviour taught us, so we pray.
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.
O sacred head, surrounded
by crown of piercing thorn!
O bleeding head, so wounded,
so shamed and put to scorn!
Death’s pallid hue comes o’er thee,
the glow of life decays;
yet angel-hosts adore thee,
and tremble as they gaze.
In this thy bitter passion,
good Shepherd, think of me
with thy most sweet compassion,
unworthy though I be:
beneath thy cross abiding
for ever would I rest,
in thy dear love confiding,
and with thy presence blest.
Words: Paul Gerhardt (1607-1676) based on ‘Salve caput cruentatum’
translated Henry Williams Baker (1821-1877)
Music: Hans Leo Hassler (1564-1612)
harmonised by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)
O Lord Jesus Christ,
Son of the living God,
set your passion, cross and death
between your judgement and our souls,
now and in the hour of our death.
Grant mercy and grace to the living,
rest to the departed,
to your Church peace and concord
and to us sinners forgiveness,
and everlasting life and glory;
for, with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
you are alive and reign,
God, now and for ever.
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