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Intercessions for Fifth Sunday of Easter Year B: 3 May 2015


“Cluster in mid veraison” by Agne27 Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

The Collect

Almighty God, who through your only-begotten Son Jesus Christ have overcome death and opened to us the gate of everlasting life: grant that, as by your grace going before us you put into our minds good desires, so by your continual help we may bring them to good effect; through Jesus Christ our risen Lord. Amen.

¶ The Liturgy of the Word

First Reading: Acts 8.26-40

An angel of the Lord said to Philip, ‘Get up and go towards the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.’ (This is a wilderness road.) So he got up and went. Now there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of the Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, in charge of her entire treasury. He had come to Jerusalem to worship and was returning home; seated in his chariot, he was reading the prophet Isaiah. Then the Spirit said to Philip, ‘Go over to this chariot and join it.’ So Philip ran up to it and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah. He asked, ‘Do you understand what you are reading?’ He replied, ‘How can I, unless someone guides me?’ And he invited Philip to get in and sit beside him. Now the passage of the scripture that he was reading was this: ‘Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter, and like a lamb silent before its shearer, so he does not open his mouth. In his humiliation justice was denied him. Who can describe his generation? For his life is taken away from the earth.’ The eunuch asked Philip, ‘About whom, may I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?’ Then Philip began to speak, and starting with this scripture, he proclaimed to him the good news about Jesus. As they were going along the road, they came to some water; and the eunuch said, ‘Look, here is water! What is to prevent me from being baptized?’ He commanded the chariot to stop, and both of them, Philip and the eunuch, went down into the water, and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he was passing through the region, he proclaimed the good news to all the towns until he came to Caesarea.

Psalm 22.25-31

From you comes my praise in the great congregation; * I will perform my vows in the presence of those that fear you.
The poor shall eat and be satisfied; * those who seek the Lord shall praise him; their hearts shall live for ever.
All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord, * and all the families of the nations shall bow before him.
For the kingdom is the Lord’s * and he rules over the nations.
How can those who sleep in the earth bow down in worship, * or those who go down to the dust kneel before him?
He has saved my life for himself; my descendants shall serve him; * this shall be told of the Lord for generations to come.
They shall come and make known his salvation, to a people yet unborn, * declaring that he, the Lord, has done it.

Second Reading: 1 John 4.7-21

Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. Beloved, since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the Father has sent his Son as the Saviour of the world. God abides in those who confess that Jesus is the Son of God, and they abide in God. So we have known and believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness on the day of judgement, because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because he first loved us. 2Those who say, ‘I love God,’ and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.

Gospel Reading: John 15.1-8

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine-grower. He removes every branch in me that bears no fruit. Every branch that bears fruit he prunes to make it bear more fruit. You have already been cleansed by the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. Whoever does not abide in me is thrown away like a branch and withers; such branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.’

Jane Williams writes:


Prayers of Intercession

¶The Church of Christ

Lord, grant that your Church, constant in faith and love, may bring forth good fruit. Rooted in you, we know that such fruitfulness is not only possible but cannot be prevented with you as the dresser of the vine, pruning us into the form you would have us take. Help us to understand that, though there are many branches, we all stem from the one vine, the true vine, our Saviour. And then others, too, may taste and see that you are good.

Lord, where we see love we recognise your presence: in your mercy, hear our prayer


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

Lord, help us to see that sometimes structures which seem part of our very existence are in reality so much dead wood, and that there can be no renewal without first clearing out all that is decayed. Only then, like a phoenix from the ashes, can we build the new Jerusalem. Help us to be bold in our spring cleaning, so that new life may burst into being, in your name.

Lord, where we see love we recognise your presence: in your mercy, hear our prayer


¶The local community

Lord, you have set each one of us into a community, with needs and strengths and weaknesses. Help us to form a useful part of that community and teach us where you need us to be doing, and where you ask us simply to be. Let us do all that we do in a spirit of love, reflecting the example of our Saviour, and where we fail, as we know we will, let us above all do no harm.

Lord, where we see love we recognise your presence: in your mercy, hear our prayer


¶Those who suffer

Lord, we pray for those who are in pain, whether of the mind, body or spirit. Be with them in their travail, and let them know that, whatever they are called upon to undergo, you will always be by their side. May they feel the reality of your everlasting arms, buoying them up on their journey through the vale of tears, whether it be long or short.

Lord, where we see love we recognise your presence: in your mercy, hear our prayer


¶The communion of saints

Lord, we pray for those who have departed this life and are now in your everlasting presence. May those who felt their lives to be marred by fruitlessness and aridity now find fullness and fulfilment beyond measure.

Merciful Father, accept these prayers…


Prayer after Communion

Eternal God, whose Son Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life: grant us to walk in his way, to rejoice in his truth, and to share his risen life; who is alive and reigns, now and for ever.


Copyright acknowledgement (where not already indicated above): Invitation to Confession (Easter Day until Eve of Ascension) © 1988 Continuum (Mowbray) (Adapted) Some material included in this service is copyright: © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ, USA Some material included in this service is copyright: © The Archbishops’ Council 2000 Collect (5th of Easter, Short) © The Archbishops’ Council 2005

4 comments on this post:

Daisy barnes said...

These are great, but I am down to lead intercession so on 10th May and it is already the 5th. I hate last minute preparation!

Laura Sykes said...

I am very sorry Daisy. I do try and write them on Monday nights. But it rather depends on what is going on in the rest of my life, and I have a husband for whom I am the carer, as well as taking part in the life of my own community. I have never been later than Wednesday, and am hoping to finalise this evening. Hope that will do? 🙂

05 May 2015 11:17
05 May 2015 10:58
Daisy barnes said...

Thanks for reply and I fully understand. You are doing a wonderful job and I shall be looking them up on a regular basis from now on

06 May 2015 19:28
Lay Anglicana said...

And thank-you, Daisy. It is good for me to have someone keep me up to the mark, and it reminds me that I do have flesh and blood readers, I am not just sending these prayers into cyberspace. I hope they remain helpful to you.

06 May 2015 19:54

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