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Intercessions for Candlemas Year C: 3 February 2013

Almighty and ever-living God, clothed in majesty, whose beloved Son was this day presented in the Temple, in substance of our flesh: grant that we may be presented to you with pure and clean hearts, by your Son Jesus Christ 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: Malachi 3.1-5

Thus says the Lord God: See, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight – indeed, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts. But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears? For he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap; he will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the descendants of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, until they present offerings to the LORD in righteousness. Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the LORD as in the days of old and as in former years. Then I will draw near to you for judgement; I will be swift to bear witness against the sorcerers, against the adulterers, against those who swear falsely, against those who oppress the hired workers in their wages, the widow, and the orphan, against those who thrust aside the alien, and do not fear me, says the LORD of hosts.


Psalm 24.(1-6)7-10

The earth is the Lord’s and all that fills it, * the compass of the world and all who dwell therein.
For he has founded it upon the seas *and set it firm upon the rivers of the deep.
‘Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord, *or who can rise up in his holy place?’
‘Those who have clean hands and a pure heart, *who have not lifted up their soul to an idol,
nor sworn an oath to a lie;
‘They shall receive a blessing from the Lord, *a just reward from the God of their salvation.’
Such is the company of those who seek him, *of those who seek your face, O God of Jacob.
Lift up your heads, O gates;be lifted up, you everlasting doors; *and the King of glory shall come in.
‘Who is the King of glory?’ *‘The Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord who is mighty in battle.’
Lift up your heads, O gates; be lifted up, you everlasting doors; *and the King of glory shall come in.
‘Who is this King of glory?’ *‘The Lord of hosts,he is the King of glory.’

Second Reading: Hebrews 2.14-18

Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death – that is, the devil – and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants. For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

Gospel Reading: Luke 2.22-40

When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord”), and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons”. Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

“Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel.”

The child’s father and mother marvelled at what was said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.” There was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshipped night and day, fasting and praying. Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him.

Candlemas, the Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple, coincides with the Second Sunday before Lent, but most churches will be following the lectionary for Candlemas. In a commentary on the gospel we read: ‘How little is told us, how much is suggested; and the only appropriate response is that of Mary who ‘treasured and pondered‘ all these things’ (Luke 2.19).

Let us pray to the Father through Jesus Christ who is our Light and Life

¶The Church of Christ

Lord, you sent a light to lighten the Church, which is not the light of earthly pomp and splendour, nor the light of power and dominance, but the light of a child whose life will lead to the cross and be lit by the resurrection. We ask that Christ, as the light that redefines and makes all things new, may bring his transforming radiance to bear on our Church so that it may truly and fully reflect your glory.

Lord, who sent us the light of the world to enlighten our lives, in your mercy, hear our prayer

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

Lord, we ask you to give us the vision to see your love in the world in spite of human failings. Give us weak eyes for things of little worth, and eyes that are clear-sighted in all of your truth. Lead us in the ways of justice and of peace, that each may live for all and all may care for each.

Lord, who sent us the light of the world to enlighten our lives, in your mercy, hear our prayer

¶The local community

Lord, inspire us with your love so that we in turn may hope to bring light to those with whom we live and work. Daily renew in us all the sense of joy, filling every corner of our hearts with love and gladness so that we may be diffusers of life and meet all that comes with gallant and high-hearted happiness, giving you thanks always for all things.

Lord, who sent us the light of the world to enlighten our lives, in your mercy, hear our prayer

¶Those who suffer

Lord, we ask you to pour your healing light on those who suffer physical or mental pain.  Give our spirits power to climb to the fountain of all light and be purified. Break through the mists of earth, the weight of clay. Shine forth in splendour, you who are calm weather and quiet resting place for faithful souls. You are the journey, and the journey’s end.

Lord, who sent us the light of the world to enlighten our lives, in your mercy, hear our prayer

¶The communion of saints

Lord, we pray for those that are now with you on that glorious shining hill, where there is no cloud nor sun, no darkness nor dazzling. May your one equal light shine on those whom we love and those whom we pray for, now and for all eternity.

Lord, who sent us the light of the world to enlighten our lives, in your mercy, hear our prayer

The illustration is via Veritasse. It is ‘Heaven’s Door’ by Tim Steward – but to me it is also a wonderful image of Christ being welcomed into the temple.

3 comments on this post:

Elinor d'Albiac said...

Thank you so much for these intercessions. When time is of the essence to be able to find these prayers is such a blessing.

30 January 2016 21:26
Mark Simons said...

Lovely intercessions. I am leading an evening service of music and readings for Candlemas. Am I ok in using these intercessions? If so, what acknowledgement would you like to be written?

admin said...

You are very welcome to use these intercessions exactly as they stand, or equally in any way in which you would like to redraft them. If you are kind enough to acknowledge, perhaps you would say something like ‘based on intercessions written by Lay Anglicana’. I am so glad you like them.

07 January 2017 19:56
07 January 2017 19:52

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