"What might we have learned in the past 3 months when the doors of the churches have been locked?"

Here is this week's 'Wednesday Word' from Alison:


















Online Service for 3rd Sunday after Trinity 28th June 2020















A very warm welcome to our service today.

Every Sunday is about the Good News – with a capital G and a capital N because that’s what the word Gospel means – the good news of God with us, Jesus our Saviour.

This week has been a good news week in a particular way – from 4th July our churches can resume services – everyone is welcome to come to church on Sunday 5th July – 9.30 am at St. Michael’s Partridge Green, 11am at St. Georges West Grinstead. We are fortunate to have a really visual welcome prepared by Year 1 at Jolesfield – thank you children for your beautiful art work.

This return to worshipping together is a real milestone for the churches in England and we will be working during this week to make sure we, in this parish, follow all the safety guidelines and to make sure that it will be a joyful and spiritually uplifting experience. I’ll say a bit more about our future plans at the end of the service this morning.

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit – Amen.

Grace, mercy and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

Today’s Gospel reading is from Matthew – it’s a continuation from last week – gives me the theme for this morning – a cup of cold water. How hot was it this week! When we get a couple of days of heat in the summer I always remember George II’s definition of a typical British summer – three fine days and a thunderstorm. But what we depend upon, long for in the heat - is a cup of cold water – (pour and drink the water). Water is what gives us life, quenches our thirst and washes us clean.

So let’s begin by looking back over the week that has passed, noting especially any thoughts words or deeds that we regret. I invite you to repeat after me – Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord, have mercy.

Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Against you, you only have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.

Christ, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.

Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.


May the God of all healing and forgiveness draw us to himself and cleanse us from all our sins,

that we may behold the glory of his Son, the Word made flesh,

Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


When we associate Jesus with a drink of water we might also remember another Gospel story – Jesus is travelling, tired, hungry and thirsty – his disciples have gone off to buy food. Having walked a long way, he sits down by a well and asks a Samaritan woman for a drink. All he wanted was a cup of cold water.

Well that simple opening exchange – give me a drink - had a huge effect, not only on that particular woman but on the whole community she lived in. It was the start of something amazing – and it began because of thirst – not just bodily thirst – but spiritual thirst as well. Jesus says: “those who drink of the water that I will give them will never thirst again”.

I watched a YouTube video this week. There was a young woman, a nun called sister Faustina – and she was explaining how she came to be a nun and she said – I had this real thirst for something more.

I was interested in her words because she didn’t, at the point when she acknowledged the thirst, know what she was thirsty for – but she acknowledged her need – and began her search for the living water.

Anyway – back to the Gospel. Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew.

Matthew 10:40-42

40 “Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. 41 Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; 42 and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple—truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.”

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit – Amen.


Now we could light our tea lights and become still and know that we are in the presence of God…..

Heavenly Father, we thank you today for good news – for congregations, wedding couples, and all those who miss fellowship as well as worship, for time to be with Jesus in word and in breaking bread. We thank you for calling us to be together in your presence. Amen.

We pray for the world, for all those suffering from the effects of the pandemic. Lord God, you have created us in your image, restore us all, build us up, and give every nation hope for the future. Amen.

We pray for peace and justice in our own country, and especially for the police and emergency services at the moment: Heavenly Father, we pray for calm in places where violence has erupted. Lord, help those who keep the peace and help communities work together for a peaceful and just future. Amen.

We pray for those known to us alone who are suffering in body, mind or spirit, in our parish, we pray for Frank Green. Lord God, strengthen the weak, comfort the bereaved and bless all those who care for them. Amen.

We pray for all those who have died recently, those who have died as a result of the virus, and those who have been killed in the past week innocently, unprepared………… And for those whose anniversary of death falls at this time: George Johnson, Alick Guy, Bill Story, Herbert Gallagher, Maureen Shepherd, Denise Hollington, Mary Greenfield, George Ison, Richard Charlton, Frederick Cotrell, Mark de Gruchy Lambert, Coral Field, George Sarff, Thomas Kearney, Ginger Gee, Angela Johns. Rest eternal grant unto them O Lord, and let light perpetual shine on them. May they rest in peace, and rise in glory. Amen.

Now there is a response for you to join in with – we all say – May they know the welcome of your love.


We pray for those on the fringes of society; for those who feel rejected; for those who are overlooked; for those whom others avoid. May they know they are welcome in your kingdom.
May they know the welcome of your love.


We pray for those who are lonely. May they know they are welcome in your kingdom.
May they know the welcome of your love.


We pray for those in prison; especially those kept in isolation. May they know they are welcome in your kingdom.

May they know the welcome of your love.


We pray for children everywhere; for their families and those with responsibility for their education.
May they know they are welcome in your kingdom. May they know the welcome of your love.


Loving God, as you welcome us, may we welcome others with warmth and steadfast love.

We say together the Lord’s Prayer……..

Just before our final blessing I have a couple more notices about the services in St. George’s and St. Michael’s next week. If you are intending to come to St. Michael’s, it would be great if you could come a little earlier – say from ten past nine - as it will take a little more time to seat everyone. We will have people to welcome and help with seating at both churches. I don’t know anything definite about wearing masks – if you would feel happier wearing one, then that’s fine. I will let everyone know if the rules about masks change. We will be filming and streaming at St. Michael’s, the camera won’t be facing the congregation but people can be seen when they return from receiving communion. If you are worried about this please do let me know.


There will be a Wednesday morning service at St. Michael’s on Wednesday 8th July at 10.30am.


We need to be responsible about keeping a distance from each other and keeping hands clean. But we should also be confident that the scientific advice is positive about returning to church – and the blessing and the strength that comes from worship will do us all a power of good!

In all this – we are learning – it’s a new situation – any queries or worries, do get in touch.



May God, who in Christ gives us a spring of water welling up to eternal life,

perfect in you the image of his glory; and the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, be with us all, Amen.


Important Notice:

The Horsham Food Bank still needs your help – please do bring gifts of non-perishable food to both churches. They are running short. At this time think of others and give what you can. Teams will collect your donations and deliver them to the Food Bank. Thank you.

We are two churches but a single parish.


Diversity of tradition, unity of faith and commitment to our community are our driving passions.


St. George's Church

Rectory Lane

West Grinstead


RH13 8LR

St. Michael's Church

Church Lane

Partridge Green


RH13 8JW


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