Order of service

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The Gathering

Our worship begins at the sound of the bell, please stand as the sacred ministers enter, during which the introit hymn is sung.

Songs of thankfulness and praise,
Jesus, Lord, to thee we raise,
Manifested by the star
To the sages from afar;
Branch of royal David’s stem,
In thy birth at Bethlehem;
Anthems be to thee addressed:
God in man made manifest.

Manifest at Jordan’s stream,
Prophet, priest and King supreme,
And at Cana wedding-guest,
In thy Godhead manifest,
Manifest in pow’r divine,
Changing water into wine;
Anthems be to thee addressed:
God in man made manifest.

Manifest in making whole,
Palsied limbs and fainting soul,
Manifest in valiant fight,
Quelling all the devil’s might,
Manifest in gracious will,
Ever bringing good from ill;
Anthems be to thee addressed:
God in man made manifest.

Sun and moon shall darkened be,
Stars shall fall, the heav’ns shall flee;
Christ will then like lightning shine,
All will see his glorious sign.
All will then the trumpet hear,
All will see the judge appear;
Thou by all wilt be confessed:
God in man made manifest.

Grant us grace to see thee, Lord,
Mirrored in thy holy word;
May we imitate thee now,
And be pure, as pure art thou;
That we like to thee may be
At thy great Epiphany,
And may praise thee, ever blest,
God in man made manifest.

Words: C. Wordsworth (1807-1885)
Music: C. Steggall (1826-1905))

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


The Greeting

Blessed are you, Lord our God, King of the universe.

From the rising of the sun to its setting
your name is proclaimed in all the world.

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 that we may be faithful to our baptism.’

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.


The Liturgy of the Word

Please sit.

A reading from the book of the prophet Isaiah.

But now thus says the Lord,
    he who created you, O Jacob,
    he who formed you, O Israel:
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
    I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with

and through the rivers, they shall not
    overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be
    burned, and the flame shall not consume you.
For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour.
I give Egypt as your ransom,
    Ethiopia and Seba in exchange for you.
Because you are precious in my sight,
    and honoured, and I love you,
I give people in return for you,
    nations in exchange for your life.
Do not fear, for I am with you;
    I will bring your offspring from the east,
    and from the west I will gather you;
I will say to the north, “Give them up,”
    and to the south, “Do not withhold;
bring my sons from far away
    and my daughters from the end of the earth—
everyone who is called by my name,
    whom I created for my glory,
    whom I formed and made.”

Isaiah 43.1-7

This is the word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Please stand as the gradual hymn is sung. During the hymn a procession will make its way to the centre of the nave from where the Gospel for the day is read. To symbolise our desire to turn to Christ in our daily lives, at the end of the hymn we remain standing and turn to face the place where the Gospel is proclaimed.

On Jordan’s bank the Baptist’s cry
Announces that the Lord is nigh;
Awake, and hearken, for he brings
Glad tidings of the King of kings.

Then cleansed be ev’ry breast from sin;
Make straight the way for God within;
Prepare we in our hearts a home,
Where such a mighty guest may come.

For thou art our salvation, Lord,
Our refuge and our great reward;
Without thy grace we fade away,
Like flow’rs that wither and decay.

To heal the sick stretch out thine hand,
And bid the fallen sinner stand;
Shine forth and let thy light restore
Earth’s own true loveliness once more.

All praise, eternal Son, to thee
Whose advent doth thy people free,
Whom with the Father we adore
And Holy Ghost for evermore.

Words: C. Coffin (1676-1749) translated by J. Chandler (1806-1876) alt.
 Music: from ‘Musikalisches Handbuch’ (1690)

Gospel Reading

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


Matthew 3.17

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

Glory to you, O Lord.

‘In the wilderness John proclaimed a baptism of repentance. As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, John answered all of them by saying, ‘I baptise you with water; but one that is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing-floor and to gather the wheat into his granary, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.’

Now when all the people were baptised, and when Jesus also had been baptised and was praying, the heaven was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved, with you I am well pleased.’

 Luke 3.15-17, 21-22

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, O Christ.


Please sit after the preacher leads us in prayer.

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 water is sprinkled over the people before the president says:

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

Following an invitation to pray from the intercessor we kneel or sit to pray.

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

Please stand with the president.

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. Alleluia.

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.

O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness;
Bow down before him, his glory proclaim;
With gold of obedience and incense of lowliness,
Kneel and adore him: the Lord is his name.

Low at his feet lay thy burden of carefulness;
High on his heart he will bear it for thee,
Comfort thy sorrows, and answer thy prayerfulness,
Guiding thy steps as may best for thee be.

Fear not to enter his courts in the slenderness
Of the poor wealth thou wouldst reckon as thine:
Truth in its beauty, and love in its tenderness,
These are the off’rings to lay on his shrine.

These, though we bring them in trembling and fearfulness,
He will accept for the name that is dear;
Mornings of joy give for ev’nings of tearfulness,
Trust for our trembling and hope for our fear.

O worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness;
Bow down before him, his glory proclaim;
With gold of obedience and incense of lowliness,
Kneel and adore him the Lord is his name.

Words: J. S. B. Monsell (1811-1875)
Music: melody from the ‘Rheinhardt MS’, Üttingen (1754)
Hymn Tune: WAS LEBET

Taking of the Bread and Wine

Open the heavens, Lord our God,
and send your transforming Spirit
on us and on these gifts.
May we who are baptised into Christ
be ready to share his cup of suffering
and strengthened to serve him for ever.


The Eucharistic Prayer (E)

Please kneel or sit.

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 singing:

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.

We praise and bless you, loving Father,
through Jesus Christ, our Lord;
and as we obey his command,
send your Holy Spirit,
that broken bread and wine outpoured
may be for us the body and blood of your dear Son.

On the night before he died he had supper with his friends
and, taking bread, he praised you.
He broke the bread, gave it to them and said:
Take, eat; this is my body which is given for you;
do this in remembrance of me.

When supper was ended he took the cup of wine.
Again he praised you, gave it to them and said:
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.

So, Father, we remember all that Jesus did,
in him we plead with confidence his sacrifice
made once for all upon the cross.
Bringing before you the bread of life and cup of salvation,
we proclaim his death and resurrection
until he comes in glory.

Great is the mystery of faith:

Christ has died,
Christ is risen,
Christ will come again.

Lord of all life,
help us to work together for that day
when your kingdom comes
and justice and mercy will be seen in all the earth.
Look with favour on your people,
gather us in your loving arms
and bring us with Blessed Mary, St Joseph and all the saints
to feast at your table in heaven.
Through Christ, and with Christ, and in Christ,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
all honour and glory are yours, O loving Father,
for ever and ever.

Amen. (Sung)

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.

The Agnus Dei is sung as the bread is broken for distribution.

Jesus, Lamb of God,
have mercy on us.

Jesus, bearer of our sins,
have mercy on us.

Jesus, redeemer of the world,
grant us peace.

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. All baptised Christians are welcome to receive the sacrament. Please follow the guidance offered by the stewards.

If you are not baptised, or would prefer to not receive then do still come forward for a blessing bringing this book with you so the president knows your intention.

The president receives communion in both kinds. To reduce the risk of spreading any infection, communion will continue to be offered in one kind (bread) only. This is still considered to be complete communion by the Church of England.

To the words ‘The Body of Christ’ the communicant replies “Amen”. Prior to then on drinking from the cup the president says ‘The Blood of Christ shed for us all’ to which those present reply “Amen.”

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

Lord, you have called us.
Make us worthy of our calling,
that in the mighty name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
we may rejoice in your love and saving power,
and proclaim your presence and glory in the world;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you, Almighty Father,
and the Holy Spirit, one God,
now and for ever. Amen.

Choir Anthem

‘Tomorrow shall be my dancing day’

J. L. Gardner (1917-2011)

A communion hymn is sung.

Please remain seated.

Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.
Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.
Melt me, mould me, fill me, use me.
Spirit of the living God, fall afresh on me.

Words & Music: D. Iverson (1890-1972)
Hymn Tune (IVERSON)

The Post Communion Prayer

Please stand with the president who 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.


We thank you, Lord,
that you have fed us in this sacrament,
united us with Christ,
and given us a foretaste of the heavenly banquet
prepared for all peoples.

A hymn is sung.

Crown him with many crowns,
The Lamb upon his throne;
Hark, how the heav’nly anthem drowns
All music but its own:
Awake, my soul, and sing
Of him who died for thee,
And hail him as thy matchless King
Through all eternity.

Crown him the Virgin’s Son,
The God incarnate born,
Whose arm those crimson trophies won
Which now his brow adorn;
Fruit of the mystic Rose,
As of that Rose the Stem,
The Root whence mercy ever flows,
The Babe of Bethlehem.

Crown him the Lord of love:
Behold his hands and side;
Rich wounds, yet visible above,
In beauty glorified:
No angel in the sky
Can fully bear that sight,
But downward bends each burning eye
At mysteries so bright.

Crown him the Lord of peace,
Whose pow’r a sceptre sways
From pole to pole, that wars may cease,
Absorbed in prayer and praise:
His reign shall know no end,
And round his piercèd feet
Fair flow’rs of paradise extend
Their fragrance ever sweet.

Crown him the Lord of years,
The Potentate of time,
Creator of the rolling spheres,
Ineffably sublime.
All hail, Redeemer, hail!
For thou hast died for me;
Thy praise shall never, never fail
Throughout eternity.

 Words: M. Bridges (1800-1894)
 Music: G. J. Elvey (1816-1893)

The Dismissal


The Father’s voice bears witness to the Son.

God has revealed himself to us.

The Son bows his head beneath the waters of baptism.

God has revealed himself to us.

The Spirit as a dove descends from heaven.

God has revealed himself to us.

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

God has revealed himself to us.

The Dismissal Gospel

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

Glory to you, O Lord.

John testified, ‘I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptise with water said to me, “He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain is the one who baptises with the Holy Spirit.” And I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God.’

John 1.32-34

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, O Christ.

The Blessing

May God the Father,
who led the wise men by the shining of a star
to find the Christ, the Light from Light,
lead you also in your pilgrimage to find the Lord.


May God the Son,
who turned water into wine at the wedding feast at Cana,
transform your lives and make glad your hearts.


May God the Holy Spirit,
who came upon the beloved Son
at his baptism in the river Jordan,
pour out his gifts on you
who have come to the waters of new birth.


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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Communion setting
© The Royal School of Church Music

Great Amen
© G H Taylor

Tomorrow shall be my dancing day
© Oxford University Press

Spirit of the living God
© Birdwing Music/Alliance Media Ltd

Organ voluntary
© Novello & Co. Ltd

CCL licence: 668063