May I welcome you most warmly to this virtual service from Whitstable Baptist Church.
We pray that you will be greatly encouraged by joining with us in this way.
Let us prepare our hearts to worship our almighty and loving God
as we reflect on the following verses from Isaiah 63 –
I will tell of the kindnesses of the LORD,
the deeds for which He is to be praised,
according to all the LORD has done for us—
yes, the many good things
He has done for Israel,
according to His compassion and many kindnesses.
He said, “Surely they are My people,
children who will be true to Me”;
and so He became their Saviour.
In all their distress He too was distressed,
and the angel of His presence saved them.
In His love and mercy He redeemed them;
He lifted them up and carried them
all the days of old.
Introductory Remarks (PW)
This is a very significant Sunday for us as we mark both Pentecost and our 151st Church anniversary.
We come with thanksgiving and joy as we express our glad gratitude for the gift of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost
and for His gracious ministry to us a church over the years.
These words by Graham Kendrick sum up our experience:
Look what God has done for us
Over all the years we’ve shared
Ever since the day
He joined our flick'ring
Lights into one flame
Look at all the lives He's changed
By His grace we're not the same
All the fruit that¹s grown
All that's yet to come
Look what God has done.
Prayer of praise and thanksgiving.
As we gather today, Loving Father, we praise You with joyful hearts as we acknowledge Your greatness and Your faithfulness
to us over the past 151 years since our church was established.
We thank You for inspiring those who had the original vision
and we thank You for equipping those who have continued to see it through to the present day.
In all of this we see clearly the evidence of the gracious work of Your Spirit fostering our worship, our fellowship,
our activities and our witness. We put our trust in You afresh. Despite current circumstances of this lockdown,
we believe You still have good plans for us. May we move forward in Your will and please You in all we do.
We present this prayer in Jesus’ Name,
Song 1: Lord for the years.
Young People’s Slot
A retelling of Pentecost using Lego!
Song 2 & 3: Let’s make God happy & I want to be a blooming tree.
A Time of Intercessory Prayer:
Please express your own prayers focussing on the requests below
Let us pause to pray for our suffering world:
We long for an end to conflict and for lasting peace in Syria,
Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen. We ask for an end to the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, especially in countries
such as Bangladesh, Guatemala, Haiti, Mexico, Oman, Pakistan and Russia which are still facing a peak in infections.
We ask for God’s comfort to be with all those who have lost loved ones and all those currently in hospital.
We pray that He will give wisdom to our own government and to all in our society as regards the easing of restrictions
over coming weeks and months and we pray that there will not be a second wave of the outbreak.
Let’s also pray for our church family:
We think of those in our fellowship with health concerns
and we particularly remember Kathy, Mavis and Betty today. May they experience an easing of anxiety,
discomfort and pain and may they receive the best possible medical attention.
We ask for help for loved ones supporting them. We bring Ben Cadge to God in our prayers
– thankful that he is now home from hospital and praying he might continue to make significant progress
in his recovery from Covid-19. We think of Fred Goodger and his family as they continue to mourn the loss of Margaret.
We also want to pray for those who are feeling lonely or distressed at this time.
Song 4: Breathe on me Breath of God.
A Prayer for Pentecost Sunday:
We ask for your forgiveness, Lord, when we forget the power that lies within,
and trust instead upon our human strength.
Remind us of that glorious day when your Spirit transformed the lives of those
who hid in fear, into men of power.
Renew these hearts which have grown cold with flames of fire,
as on that Pentecost, that this might be the church that you desire.
Musical Item: When I survey the wondrous cross (Jean Rothery)
Communion (Rev Carl Smethurst of South West Baptist Association)
Song 6: There must be more than this (Consuming Fire).
A Prayer - Spirit of Life (by Jonny Baker):
Your breath of life fills the whole world
and holds all things together.
if you withdraw your breath everything turns to dust breathe on me Breath of God
you are the source of life that brings life to the world,
whole life, full life, unhindered, indestructible everlasting life fill me with life anew
the life of your Spirit which Christ sends into the world
is the power of the resurrection which brings us new life breathe on me Breath of God
the sending of your Spirit is the revelation
of God's indestructible affirmation of life and marvellous joy in life fill me with life anew
Jesus, where you are there is life.
where you are sick people are healed,
sad people are comforted,
marginalised people are accepted
and the demons of death are driven out breathe on me Breath of God
Where your Holy Spirit is present there is life.
the powers and energies of eternal life are experienced. fill me with life anew
the mission of your Spirit is a movement for life
and a movement for healing
which spreads consolation and the courage to live
and raises up what wants to die. breathe on me Breath of God
we affirm and love life so much
that we protest against death
and all the powers that disseminate death. fill me with life anew
help us to join with your comforting of the sad,
healing of the sick,
welcoming of strangers,
and forgiving of sins. breathe on me Breath of God
send your Spirit so that this world should not perish but live fill me with life anew
Spirit of the new creation
break into the here and now
bringing foretastes of the age to come
when all things are made new,
and creation is set free from the powers of death breathe on me Breath of God
Spirit of God renew the face of the earth fill me with life anew
give us hearts of flesh for hearts of stone that we may love as you would love
and do what you would do.
Benediction - Romans 15 v13:
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Amen.