Memorial Service Sunday 29th January

Hymn is – Thine be the Glory, Risen, Conquering Son

  1. Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son;
    endless is the victory, thou o’er death hast won;
    angels in bright raiment rolled the stone away,
    kept the folded grave clothes where thy body lay.

Thine be the glory, risen conquering Son,
Endless is the vict’ry, thou o’er death hast won.

  1. Lo! Jesus meets us, risen from the tomb;
    Lovingly he greets us, scatters fear and gloom;
    let the Church with gladness, hymns of triumph sing;
    for her Lord now liveth, death hath lost its sting.

Thine be the glory, risen conquering Son,

Endless is the vict’ry, thou o’er death hast won

  1. No more we doubt thee, glorious Prince of life;
    life is naught without thee; aid us in our strife;
    make us more than conquerors, through thy deathless love:
    bring us safe through Jordan to thy home above.

Thine be the glory, risen conquering Son,
Endless is the vict’ry, thou o’er death hast won.
(by Edmond Budry – 1854 to 1932)

We meet this day to remember our loved ones, to renew our trust and confidence in Christ, and to pray that together we may be one in Him, through whom we offer our praises to the Father.

I have set the Lord always before me:

All: He is at my right hand, and I shall not fall.

Show us your mercy, O Lord:

All: And grant us your salvation.

For with you is the well of life:

All: And in your light shall we see light. 

Let us pray.

We begin by confessing our sins to God, for sin brought death into the world.

O Lord Jesus Christ, risen master and triumphant Lord, we bow before you in sorrow for our sins, and confess to you our weakness and unbelief.

We have lived by our own strength, not by the power of your resurrection. In your mercy, forgive us:

All:  Lord, hear us and help us.

We have lived by the light of our own eyes, as faithless and not believing. In your mercy, forgive us: 

All:  Lord, hear us and help us.

We have lived for this world alone, and doubted our home in heaven. In your mercy, forgive us:

All:  Lord, hear us and help us, Lift our minds above earthly things, Set them on things in heaven; Show us your glory and your power, That we may serve you gladly all our days.


God’s forgiveness is spoken.

Hymn is – The Lord is My Shepherd

  1. The Lord’s my shepherd, I’ll not want;
    He makes me lie in pastures green.
    He leads me by the still, still waters,
    His goodness restores my soul.

Chorus –  And I will trust in You alone,
And I will trust in You alone,
For Your endless mercy follows me,
Your goodness will lead me home.

  1. He guides my ways in righteousness,
    And He anoints my head with oil,
    And my cup, it overflows with joy,
    I feast on His pure delights.

Chorus –  And I will trust in You alone,
And I will trust in You alone,
For Your endless mercy follows me,
Your goodness will lead me home.

  1. And though I walk the darkest path,
    I will not fear the evil one,
    For You are with me, and Your rod and staff
    Are the comfort I need to know.

Chorus –  And I will trust in You alone,
And I will trust in You alone,
For Your endless mercy follows me,
Your goodness will lead me home
.      (by Francis Rous 1579 to 1659)

We remember our loved ones with thanksgiving.

After all the names have been read out you are invited to come forward and light a candle in their memory.

Let us pray. 

Lord Jesus, our risen Saviour,

We rejoice in your mighty victory over sin and death;

You are the Prince of Life;

You are alive for evermore.

Help us to know your presence in our worship,

And to receive your power in our lives,

Until we rise to live with you for ever.

All: Amen.

Our reading is taken from – Romans Chap: 8

35 Who, then, can separate us from the love of Christ? Can trouble do it, or hardship or persecution or hunger or poverty or danger or death? 

37 No, in all these things we have complete victory through him who loved us!

38 For I am certain that nothing can separate us from his love: neither death nor life, neither angels nor other heavenly rulers or powers, neither the present nor the future,

39 neither the world above nor the world below – there is nothing in all creation that will ever be able to separate us from the love of God which is ours through Christ Jesus our Lord. 

Hymn is – The Day Thou Gavest Lord is Ended

  1. The day you gave us, Lord, is ended,
    the darkness falls at your behest;
    to you our morning hymns ascended,
    your praise shall sanctify our rest.
  2. We thank you that your church, unsleeping
    while earth rolls onward into light,
    through all the world her watch is keeping,
    and rests not now by day or night.
  3. As o’er each continent and island
    the dawn leads on another day,
    the voice of prayer is never silent,
    nor dies the strain of praise away.
  4. The sun, that bids us rest, is waking
    our brethren beneath the western sky,
    and hour by hour fresh lips are making
    your wondrous doings heard on high.
  5. So be it, Lord; your throne shall never,
    like earth’s proud empires, pass away;
    but stand and rule and grow forever,
    ’til all your creatures own your sway.

(by John Ellerton, 1870)

Reflection for Our Memorial Service

This morning we have come here from our different homes, our different personalities or different memories but even so we are here, joined in one purpose, to honour, remember and express our sorrow at the loss through death of someone we loved dearly while they were with us on this earth.

Still loved but separated from us by the death that took them away.

I’m sure you’ve heard the old adage “There are two sure things in life – ‘death and taxes’

Well, in view of recent events in Westminster it would seem that there are those who, with clever manipulation and varying success, try to avoid the taxes, bit but death, there is no escape. The statistics never change, for every one person alive there will ultimately be one death. Even God’s own Son, Jesus Christ had to die and cast off his human body to be able to return from death as eternal Saviour, and thus we meet here this morning because of this inevitability.

We have all suffered loss and experienced the grief that follows.

There are words in the Bible, in the book of Ecclesiastes Chap: 8, reading from the Bible declares there is a time for everything. Time for being happy, time for being sad, a time to sow your seed and a time to reap the harvest later on , and more particularly a time to be born and a time to die. That’s the way things are, that’s the way God designed it to be.

Sometimes the timing seems way out of kilter. It seems like it should be the elderly that die having done their useful bit on earth, leaving the younger ones to carry on, but it doesn’t always work like that and you may be here remembering a younger person who died early, a son, daughter, grandson, granddaughter as well as the husbands, wives parents and dear friends. You may well, like me be ticking more than one box in the list.

The pain of remembering our departed loved ones is what we wrap up in the word ‘grief and the endurance of that grief day by day by day is what we call mourning.

Maybe with time the acute sharpness of recent death of a loved one blunts a bit and the stabbing pain settles to an ache but there is stays, the ache never entirely goes away.

  • We loved them but they are no longer here.
  • We loved them and they went away.

They went away and left us sad beyond words and that can lead us down dangerous paths of regret for the things we didn’t say or do – or conversely for the things we did say or do and in both circumstances there’s nothing we can do to make it better – we can be consumed by guilt.

We can be angry too, why did you go and leave me?

We can even feel resentful for being left like this.

We can be all sorts of things.

These are all perfectly normal feeling and reactions to such a trauma. It is the result of love.

I reckon that the only way to avoid the pain and grief and desolation of bereavement is to avoid love altogether, to practice a state of total lack of care and entire detachment between ourselves and other people who impinge on our lives.

That isn’t us, gathered here. We have loved and we still remember the happy times, even though our sadness. Our love continues and in our loss we too are still loved.

We may be asking the age, old questions about the mysteries of life and death.

  • Why is it like this?
  • How does it all make sense?
  • What do I do now?

But in the quandary of trying to find any rational answer to these questions we are very inclined to forget that with our limited human knowledge in the way we see God’s will and purpose for us all, we have little hope of making sense of these things in purely human terms.

We need to own up to the fact that it is not necessarily given to us to be able to answer these questions and mysteries from our own intellect.

As the apostle Paul said, ‘Now we see through a misty mirror but when we join with the departed in heaven, then we will understand.

The overall fact is that in our condition of mourning and sense of loss, there is love and consolation freely available for us all,  the love of our Saviour, Jesus Christ, who himself was prepared to die in a particularly horrible way to show and prove that love.

The love we heard about in our reading from the bible earlier, the love that is deeper, wider, higher, stronger than human love and there is nothing that can separate us from that love, even in our darker moments when we are beset with doubt.

I believe that we are all children of a single and amazing God who created al that we know about and all that we do not know about. God created the whole universe, a universe so immense that we struggle to imagine how vast and marvellous it is. And God created all this by an act of his will. He thought it into being and each of us is a tiny part of his purpose in that creation, even when to our limited view it seems to make no sense at all.

I believe we are loved and cared for as we live our lives on this earth, his creation, Loved by this creator God who sent his own Son to earth to demonstrate that God given love and show us how we might copy it. Jesus Christ, Son of God, our Saviour who walks alongside us to minister to us each day if we but care to listen and feel his presence with us as friend and guide in our lives.

I believe that we are loved and cared for in just the same way when we are no more on this earth. Through his gift of love we receive mercy, forgiveness and eternal life in his glorious presence. 

This is a promise from God, and God does not break his promises.

Though we miss our departed loved ones in so many ways and carry the pain of fond memories of them every day, we have the reconciling knowledge that by way of God’s love for us, that deep, Wide, everlasting love, our loved ones who we remember tonight are in his safe hands, for ever, never forgotten!


Let us pray

Lord, help us to receive and understand your

Gospel, so that we may find light in this darkness,

Faith in our doubts,

And comfort for one another in your saving


We pray for those who mourn: Comfort us all in our sorrow.

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Fill the emptiness in our hearts With the presence of your love.

All: Lord, hear our prayer. 

Increase our faith and strengthen our hope: Give us trust in You for tomorrow.

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Strengthen us in our pilgrimage through life; Keep us faithful in your service.

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

Fill our hearts with the hope of heaven.

All: Lord, hear our prayer.

O God our Father, we know that you share in our suffering. In our sorrow we come to you today for the comfort you alone can give.

Make us sure that in perfect wisdom, perfect love, and perfect power you are always working for the best.

Make us sure that a Father’s hand will never cause His child a needless tear, and that our grief is precious to you.

Make us so sure of your love that we will be able to accept even those things we cannot


Help us still to face life with grace and fortitude, and to find courage to go on, realising that the greatest way we can honour our loved ones is not only through tears, but also through tribute of our gratitude.

Comfort us and hold us, strengthen and support

us, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

All: Amen. 

We say together the prayer Jesus himself taught us:

Our Father, which art in heaven,

Hallowed be Thy Name.

Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, In earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread,

And forgive us our trespasses,

As we forgive them that trespass against us.

And lead us not into temptation,

But deliver us from evil.

For thine is the Kingdom, the power and the glory, For ever and ever.


Hymn is – Abide With Me

1 Abide with me: fast falls the eventide;
the darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide.
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, O abide with me.

2 Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away.
Change and decay in all around I see.
O thou who changest not, abide with me.

3 I need thy presence every passing hour.
What but thy grace can foil the tempter’s power?
Who like thyself my guide and strength can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, O abide with me.

4 I fear no foe with thee at hand to bless,
ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if thou abide with me.

5 Hold thou thy cross before my closing eyes.
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies.
Heaven’s morning breaks and earth’s vain shadows flee;
in life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.
(by Henry Francis Lyte (1793 to 1847)

Let us pray,

Watch now, dear Lord, with those who wake or watch or weep tonight, and give your angels charge over those who sleep.

Tend your sick ones, O Lord Christ, rest your weary ones, bless your dying ones, soothe your suffering ones, pity your afflicted ones, shield your joyous ones, and all for your love’s sake.

All: Amen.

Support us, O Lord, all the day-long of this troublesome life, until the shades lengthen and the evening comes, the busy world is hushed, the fever of life is over and our work is done.

Then, Lord, in thy mercy grant us safe lodging, a holy rest, and peace at the last; through Christ our Lord. 

All: Amen.

The Lord bless you and keep you,

The Lord make His face to shine upon you

And be gracious unto you,

The Lord lift up the light of His countenance upon you

And give you peace.

And the blessing of God Almighty,

The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,

Be upon you and remain with you always.

All: Amen. 

Hymn isGreat is thy faithfulness, O God my Father

  1. Great is thy faithfulness, O God my Father.*
    There is no shadow of turning with thee.
    Thou changest not, thy compassions, they fail not.
    As thou hast been thou forever wilt be.

Refrain: Great is thy faithfulness!
Great is thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed thy hand hath provided.
Great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

  1. Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
    sun, moon, and stars in their courses above,
    join with all nature in manifold witness
    to thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.

Refrain: Great is thy faithfulness!
Great is thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed thy hand hath provided.
Great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

  1. Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
    thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
    strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow;
    blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Refrain: Great is thy faithfulness!
Great is thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed thy hand hath provided.
Great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!
( by Thomas O. Chisholm – 1923)

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord

All: In the name of Christ 


© 702211