Services during Lent in Hagley

The Parishes of Clent and Hagley


Worship for 17 February – Ash Wednesday




We will be using this service together on Zoom at 8.00 pm.





Welcome and Introduction


We have come together to spend time reflecting on the meaning of Lent.  In Lent we are given the opportunity to stop and look at ourselves, to see if there are areas in our lives which we might wish to change.  Lent is also a time to heighten our awareness of God in our everyday living.  It is a time to stop, to look and to listen to God.



Gathering Words


We meet in the presence of God
who knows our needs, hears our cries,
feels our pain, and heals our wounds.


Lord we come with our doubts and fears, our hurts and pain.

We come feeling helpless, inadequate and insecure.

We come with our sin and with our selfishness.


Lord come and be strength, hope, peace and love for us,

and by your Spirit help us to worship you.  Amen.





Hymn                   Forty days and forty nights



Forty days and forty nights
you were fasting in the wild;
forty days and forty nights
tempted, and yet undefiled.

Sunbeams scorching all the day;
chilly dew-drops nightly shed;
prowling beasts about your way;
stones your pillow, earth your bed.

Let us your endurance share,
and from earthly greed abstain,
with you vigilant in prayer,
with you strong to suffer pain.

And if evil on us press,
flesh or spirit to assail,
Victor in the wilderness,
help us not to swerve or fail.

So shall peace divine be ours;
holy gladness, pure and true:
come to us, angelic powers,
such as ministered to you.

Keep, O keep us, Saviour dear,
ever constant by your side,
that with you we may appear
at the eternal Eastertide.


                                        George Hunt Smyttan (1822-1870)

                                        adapted by Michael Forster (b.1946)




Words from Psalm 102


Turn your ear to me;

be swift to answer when I call.

Turn your ear to me;

be swift to answer when I call.


Lord, hear my prayer,

and let my cry come before you:

be swift to answer when I call.


Do not hide your face from me

in the day of my trouble:

be swift to answer when I call.


My days are like the evening shadow;

I wither away like grass:

be swift to answer when I call.


You, Lord, endure for ever,

and your name from age to age:

be swift to answer when I call.


Glory to the Father and to the Son

and to the Holy Spirit;

Turn your ear to me;

be swift to answer when I call.












Our own stories


Let us bring our own lives, our own stories, before God -

with their day by day questions and frustrations, feelings and

emotions.  Let us bring, too, the life of our world, and the burdens that others bear.




Ever-loving God, we bring before you
our confusion, our despair, and our helplessness.


Lift from us our burden,

and in your power, renew us.


We bring before you
our tears, our cries for help, and our vulnerability.


Lift from us our burden,

and in your power, renew us.


We bring before you
all our feelings of frustration and powerlessness,
and our fears for the future.


Lift from us our burden,

and in your power, renew us.


We bring before you
our frustrated hopes,
our unfulfilled desires,
our unfettered sadness.


Lift from us our burden,

and in your power, renew us.




Hymn                   Do not be afraid


Do not be afraid, for I have redeemed you.
I have called you by your name; you are mine.


When you walk through the waters, I'll be with you.
You will never sink beneath the waves.


When the fire is burning all around you,
you will never be consumed by the flames.


When the fear of loneliness is looming,
then remember I am at your side.


When you dwell in the exile of the stranger,
remember you are precious in my eyes.


You are mine, O my child; I am your Father,
and I love you with a perfect love.





Reading                          John 8.1-11    


Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.  Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him and he sat down and began to teach them.  The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery; and making her stand before all the people, they said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery.  Now in the law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?’  They said this to test Jesus, so that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. 


When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, ‘Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.’  And once again he bent down and wrote on the ground.  When they heard it, they went away, one by one, beginning with the elders; and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him.  Jesus straightened up and said to her, ‘Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?’  She said, ‘No one, sir.’ And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.’




Reflection / Confession



The woman in the story has been caught committing adultery.  God of compassion, we hold before you what we might be caught doing if all our wrongs were laid bare.


Lord, be merciful: forgive us and heal us.



In the story, others accuse the woman.  We hold before those times when we have been eager to accuse others, or gossip about what we think others have done.


Lord, be merciful: forgive us and heal us.



In the story, Jesus forgives the woman and says, ‘Go, but do not sin again.’  We hold before you those times when you have forgiven us, and yet we have done the same thing again.


Lord, be merciful: forgive us and heal us.



In the story, we are reminded again of God’s wonderful patience and love for us.  God’s forgiveness is always there for us whenever we say ‘sorry’.


Thanks be to God




 Hymn                  God forgave my sin   



God forgave my sin in Jesus’ name.

I’ve been born again in Jesus’ name.

And in Jesus’ name I come to you

to share his love as he told me to.


He said: ‘Freely, freely you have received;

freely, freely give.

Go in my name, and because you believe,

others will know that I live.’


All power is given in Jesus’ name,

in earth and heaven in Jesus’ name.

And in Jesus’ name I come to you

to share his power as he told me to.


God gives us life in Jesus’ name,

he lives in us in Jesus’ name.

And in Jesus’ name I come to you

to share his peace as he told me to.


 Tear Intercessions


The writer of the psalms said that, when he saw the evil around him in his world, every night his bed and his pillow were soaked with tears.  As Jesus drew near to the city of Jerusalem, he wept over it, as he did when his friend Lazarus died.


Lord, we hold before you our tears - tears for our lives, our church, and our world - praying for your renewal and your strength.


O Lord, hear my prayer:
when I call answer me.


Lord, as we remember those in need and anguish today, these are their tears - tears for their lives, their needs, their pain - praying that you will give comfort, healing and freedom.


 O Lord, hear my prayer:
when I call answer me.


Lord, as we hold before you our hurting world, these are your tears.  We have seen your compassion, that what hurts us hurts you as well, and we pray that you will be with us always.


O Lord, hear my prayer:
when I call answer me.


Lord Jesus Christ,

may the tears shed in your earthly life

be balm for all who weep,

and may your prayers

give strength to all who suffer;

for your mercy’s sake.





Words of Comfort      Readings from the New Testament


Jesus said ‘Come to me, all you that are weary and carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’


Matthew 11.29,30


Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all consolation, who consoles us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to console those who are in any affliction with the consolation with which we ourselves are consoled by God.

2 Corinthians 1.3-4


For anyone who is in Christ, there is a new creation; the old creation has gone, and now the new one is here.  All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation.

                                                              2 Corinthians 5.17-18



The Lord’s Prayer


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.                      

Lead us not into temptation                 

but deliver us from evil.                         

For the kingdom, the power,                 

and the glory are yours                         

now and for ever.  Amen.




A Proclamation of Hope


We light this candle to remind us that when God the Father raised Jesus from the dead he defeated the power of death, and his light shines in the midst of the darkness of this world.


A candle is lit.  

May the light of Christ, rising in glory,
banish all darkness from our hearts and minds.


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



The Lenten Collect


Almighty and everlasting God

you hate nothing that you have made

and forgive the sins of all those who are penitent.

Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that,  lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness,

we may receive from you, the God of all mercy,

perfect forgiveness and peace;

through Jesus Christ our Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.  





 Closing prayers


Jesus, Son of God, our true and only Saviour:
you died like a criminal on a cross;
but you are God who forgives.
Once broken, helpless and in pain,
you are God in whom there is hope.
You have shown us a love beyond words:
give us your forgiveness, hope and love.



In darkness and in light,
in trouble and in joy,
help us, heavenly Father,
to trust your love,
to serve your purpose,
and to praise your name;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.




Hymn                     O God beyond all praising


                              (Tune as for “I vow to thee my country”)


O God beyond all praising, 
we worship you today,
and sing the love amazing
that songs cannot repay;
for we can only wonder
at every gift you send,
at blessings without number
and mercies without end:
we lift our hearts before you
and wait upon your word,
we honour and adore you,
our great and mighty Lord.


Then hear, O gracious Saviour,
accept the love we bring,
that we who know your favour
may serve you as our King;
and whether our tomorrows
be filled with good or ill,
we’ll triumph through our sorrows
and rise to bless you still:
to marvel at your beauty
and glory in your ways,
and make a joyful duty
our sacrifice of praise.
                                            Tune: Thaxted (Gustav Holst)



The Blessing


The Lord bless you and watch over you,

the Lord make his face shine upon you

and be gracious to you,

the Lord look kindly on you and give you peace;

and the blessing . . .





Some material included in this service is copyright:

© The Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England, 2000


Some material is Copyright

© Roots for Churches Limited


Hymns and songs are reproduced under CCLI numbers:

742099 (St John’s)

493867 (St Leonard’s)

154120 (St Saviour’s)