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Posts Tagged "Intercessions Epiphany 3 Year C":

Intercessions for Epiphany 3: 20 January 2013

The Collect

Almighty God, whose Son revealed in signs and miracles the wonder of your saving presence: renew your people with your heavenly grace, and in all our weakness sustain us by your mighty power; 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. Amen.


First Reading: Isaiah 62.1-5

For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until her vindication shines out like the dawn, and her salvation like a burning torch.  The nations shall see your vindication, and all the kings your glory; and you shall be called by a new name that the mouth of the Lord will give. You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God. You shall no more be termed Forsaken, and your land shall no more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her, and your land Married; for the Lord delights in you, and your land shall be married. For as a young man marries a young woman, so shall your builder marry you, and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.


Psalm 36.5-10

Your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens *and your faithfulness to the clouds.

Your righteousness stands like the strong mountains,

your justice like the great deep; *you, Lord, shall save both man and beast.

How precious is your loving mercy, O God! *

All mortal flesh shall take refuge under the shadow of your wings.

They shall be satisfied with the abundance of your house; *

they shall drink from the river of your delights.

For with you is the well of life *and in your light shall we see light.

O continue your loving-kindness to those who know you *

and your righteousness to those who are true of heart.


Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 12.1-11

Concerning spiritual gifts, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed. You know that when you were pagans, you were enticed and led astray to idols that could not speak. Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God ever says ‘Let Jesus be cursed!’ and no one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except by the Holy Spirit.  Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.  All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses.


Gospel Reading: John 2.1-11

On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”  “Dear woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My time has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.” They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realise where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”  This, the first of his miraculous signs, Jesus performed at Cana in Galilee. He thus revealed his glory, and his disciples put their faith in him.


We thank God that, at Epiphany, Christ was revealed in flesh, proclaimed among the nations and believed in throughout the world.

¶The Church of Christ

We pray for your Church today, gathering all around the world, whether in tiny chapels or in great cathedrals, to praise you, to hear your word, and to meet you in the eucharist. Give us a sense of expectation as we enter, and a sense of inspiration as we leave. Help us to unite behind the great commission of Christ, to go through the world, turning its water of ordinariness into the wine of your kingdom and make disciples of all nations.

Lord, help us to turn the water of the world into the wine of your kingdom: in your mercy, hear our prayer.


¶Creation, human society, the Sovereign and those in authority

Lord, who has given us this world and all that is in it, help us to use its resources properly, that we do not waste today what should be saved for tomorrow. We thank you for all who enrich our world by their time and talents. May we daily exercise the gift of discernment as we distinguish the true from the false. Govern the hearts and minds of those in authority  and may the good of all be their principal and constant aim.

Lord, help us to turn the water of the world into the wine of your kingdom: in your mercy, hear our prayer.


¶The local community

Lord, we thank you for those people who sustain us by their love and forgiveness. Thank you for the network of people with whom are lives are inextricably linked and who make up the fabric of our family and community life. Make us alert to each others’ needs and quick to serve and encourage one another. Keep us faithful to our friends, family and neighbours as you are faithful to us.

Lord, help us to turn the water of the world into the wine of your kingdom: in your mercy, hear our prayer.

¶Those who suffer

We pray for those to whom this day will seem long and hard, for those in hospital or ill at home, those struggling with depression or despair. Lord, we ask you to touch with your love all those who are on our hearts today because of their needs.   May your love flood their lives with hope and healing, in spirit, mind and body.

Lord, help us to turn the water of the world into the wine of your kingdom: in your mercy, hear our prayer.

¶The communion of saints

We remember with deep gratitude those who have left their mark on our lives by giving us love and laughter, but have now gone before us to be with Christ. We hold them in our hearts, knowing that you, Lord, hold them in yours.

Lord, help us to turn the water of the world into the wine of your kingdom: in your mercy, hear our prayer.

 The illustration is Star cross by: Rosemary Humphrey via Seed Resources

A reminder that, although today is the third Sunday of Epiphany, the readings for the Second Sunday of Epiphany are being used.

As is usual, the prayers are taken from many sources, some of them interwoven. Today I have made particular use of John Pritchard’s ‘Intercessions Handbook’, which I find very patchy and difficult to use in my rural parish church as they stand. But he has flashes of brilliance and insight, as you would expect from a man who is Bishop of Oxford.

The phrase in the prayer for the Church (to go through the world, turning its water of ordinariness into the wine of your kingdom) comes from Cosmo Lang, Archbishop of Canterbury. He is quoted in ‘The Meaning in the Miracles’ by Jeffrey John, which I thoroughly recommend. His chapter on the wedding at Cana quotes Lang: ‘it is not too much to say that the main business of the Christian life is to go through the world turning its water into wine‘.

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