Morning Prayer for the Fifth Sunday in Lent

St. Paul’s Church
Charlottetown, PEI
Morning Prayer for the Fifth Sunday in Lent
March 29, 2020

I am the resurrection and the life, says the Lord;
whoever lives and believes in me shall never die.
John 11.25, 26

The Gathering of the Community
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
and the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit
be with you all
      And also with you.

Let us pray.
We thank you, O God, that you have again brought us together to praise you for your goodness and to ask your blessing. Give us grace to see your hand in the week that is past, and your purpose in the week to come; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Confession and Absolution
Dear friends in Christ,
as we turn our hearts and minds
to worship almighty God,
let us confess our sins in penitence and faith,
firmly resolved to keep God’s commandments
and to live in love and peace with our neighbour.

Most merciful God,
we confess that we have sinned against you
in thought, word, and deed,
by what we have done,
and by what we have left undone.
We have not loved you with our whole heart;
we have not loved our neighbours as ourselves.
We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,
have mercy on us and forgive us,
that we may delight in your will,
and walk in your ways,
to the glory of your name. Amen.

Merciful God,
grant to your faithful people pardon and peace,
that we may be cleansed from all our sins
and serve you with a quiet mind;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Canticle 9: A Song from Ezekiel Ezekiel 36.24–28
The Lord is full of compassion and mercy: O come, let us worship.
I will take you from the nations,
and gather you from every country,
and bring you home to your own land.
I will pour clean water upon you,
purify you from all defilement,
and cleanse you from all your idols.
A new heart I will give you,
and put a new spirit within you;
I will take from your body the heart of stone
and give you a heart of flesh.
I will put my spirit within you,
make you walk in my ways
and observe my decrees.
You shall dwell in the land
I gave to your forebears;
you shall be my people
and I will be your God.
The Lord is full of compassion and mercy: O come, let us worship.

The Holy Gospel
The Lord be with you.
      And also with you.
The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John
      Glory to you, Lord Jesus Christ.
Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair; her brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent a message to Jesus, "Lord, he whom you love is ill." But when Jesus heard it, he said, "This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God's glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it." Accordingly, though Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was. Then after this he said to the disciples, "Let us go to Judea again." The disciples said to him, "Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?" Jesus answered, "Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them." After saying this, he told them, "Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to awaken him." The disciples said to him, "Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right." Jesus, however, had been speaking about his death, but they thought that he was referring merely to sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, "Lazarus is dead. For your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him." Thomas, who was called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, "Let us also go, that we may die with him." When Jesus arrived, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, some two miles away, and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them about their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary stayed at home. Martha said to Jesus, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him." Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again." Martha said to him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day." Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?" She said to him, "Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world." When she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary, and told her privately, "The Teacher is here and is calling for you." And when she heard it, she got up quickly and went to him. Now Jesus had not yet come to the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. The Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary get up quickly and go out. They followed her because they thought that she was going to the tomb to weep there. When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died." When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. He said, "Where have you laid him?" They said to him, "Lord, come and see." Jesus began to weep. So the Jews said, "See how he loved him!" But some of them said, "Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?" Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. Jesus said, "Take away the stone." Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, "Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead four days." Jesus said to her, "Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?" So they took away the stone. And Jesus looked upward and said, "Father, I thank you for having heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may believe that you sent me." When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, "Lazarus, come out!" The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, "Unbind him, and let him go." Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him. 11:1-45
The Gospel of Christ.
      Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.


Affirmation of Faith: Hear, O Israel
Hear, O Israel,
the Lord our God, the Lord is one.
Love the Lord your God
with all your heart,
with all your soul,
with all your mind,
and with all your strength.
This is the first and the great commandment.
The second is like it:
Love your neighbour as yourself.
There is no commandment greater than these.

Prayers of the People
Gracious and heavenly God, in this time of uncertainty and fear, breathe new life into our bones and hear our voice, as we pray for the Church and the world, saying,
Hear our prayer.

For the Church: especially for Linda our Primate, and Ron our Archbishop. In our Cycle of prayer today we pray for a period of prayer and repentance in the Anglican Communion; for the National Indigenous Bishop and the Anglican Council of Indigenous Peoples; for theological colleges and training programs within the Ecclesiastical Province of Canada: The Atlantic School of Theology, Montreal Diocesan Theological College and Queen’s College; for congregations of the Northwestern Ontario Area of the Manitoba-Northwestern Ontario Lutheran Synod; for the people of the parishes of St. George’s, New Glasgow and Strait-Chedabucto, Nova Scotia: that the life and resurrection of Christ may shine through us and fill us with hope and peace, God of love:
            Hear our prayer.

For the mission of the Church, that in faithful witness it may preach the gospel to the ends of the earth: For this parish family, that our faith in Christ will transform our fears into hope, selfishness into love, and deaths into new life, God of love:
            Hear our prayer.

For the poor, the persecuted, the sick, and all who suffer; for refugees, prisoners, and all in danger; that they may be relieved and protected: For all who have contracted the coronavirus, that your healing spirit will ease their symptoms and restore them to health, God of love:
            Hear our prayer.

For peace in the world, that a spirit of respect and reconciliation may grow among nations and peoples: For all those working to keep us safe, fed and healthy, that you will strengthen and protect them, God of love:
            Hear our prayer.

For ourselves and for all those in need of our prayers, that we may feed on the bread of life and not the bread of anxiety. We pray for people we know who are ill at home or in the hospital, especially…
… and other we may name out loud or in our hearts…
God of love:
            Hear our prayer. 
For all whom we have injured or offended; For grace to amend our lives and to further your reign: For those who mourn the death of loved ones, that they may know the compassionate presence of Christ in their lives, God of love:
            Hear our prayer.

Blessed are you, God of abundant life, who called your Son from the grave. Receive the prayers we offer this day and grant us a share in his work to bring healing, hope and reconciliation to all the earth, through him in whom we live and move and have our being, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

Almighty God, your Son came into the world to free us all from sin and death. Breathe upon us with the power of your Spirit, that we may be raised to new life in Christ, and serve you in holiness and righteousness all our days; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer
Gathering our prayers and praises into one,
let us pray as our Saviour taught us,
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours,
now and forever. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

May the God of hope
fill us with all joy and peace in believing through
the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.