At the entry of the ministers THIS SENTENCE may be used.



The sacrifice of God is a broken spirit: a broken and contrite heart you will not despise. Psalm 51.17

A HYMN, A CANTICLE, or A PSALM may be sung.



The president welcomes the people.

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


and also with you.



In these or other suitable words, the president explains the meaning of Lent and invites the people to observe it faithfully.

Brothers and sisters in Christ: since early days Christians have observed with great devotion the time of our Lord's passion and resurrection. It became the custom of the Church to prepare for this by a season of penitence and fasting.

At first this season of Lent was observed by those who were preparing for Baptism at Easter and by those who were to be restored to the Church's fellowship from which they had been separated through sin. In course of time the Church came to recognize that, by a careful keeping of these days, all Christians might take to heart the call to repentance and the assurance of forgiveness proclaimed in the gospel, and so grow in faith and in devotion to our Lord.

I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, to the observance of a holy Lent, by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God's holy word.


KYRIE ELEISON or THE TRISAGION (see pp. 285--286) or THE LITANY at section 14 may be used.



The president says THE COLLECT.

Let us pray for grace to keep Lent faithfully.

Almighty and everlasting God,
you hate nothing that you have made
and forgive the sins of all those who are penitent.
Create and make in us new and contrite hearts,
that, lamenting our sins
   and acknowledging our wretchedness,
we may receive from you, the God of all mercy,
perfect forgiveness and peace;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.





Either two or three readings from scripture follow. The Old testament reading and the Gospel are always read, but the New testament reading may be omitted.




Isaiah 58 1-8 TEV

The Lord says, 'Shout as loud as you can! Tell my people Israel about their sins! They worship me every day, claiming that they are eager to know my ways and obey my laws. They say they want me to give them just laws and that they take pleasure in worshipping me.'

The people ask, 'Why should we fast if the Lord never notices? Why should we go without food if he pays no attention?'

The Lord says to them, 'The truth is that at the same time as you fast, you pursue your own interests and oppress your workers. Your fasting makes you violent, and you quarrel and fight. Do you think this kind of fasting will make me listen to your prayers? When you fast, you make yourselves suffer; you bow your heads low like a blade of grass, and spread out sackcloth and ashes to lie on. Is that what you call fasting? Do you think I will be pleased with that?

'The kind of fasting I want is this: Remove the chains of oppression and the yoke of injustice, and let the oppressed go free. Share your food with the hungry and open your homes to the homeless poor. Give clothes to those who have nothing to wear, and do not refuse to help your own relatives.

'Then my favour will shine on you like the morning sun, and your wounds will be quickly healed. I will always be with you to save you; my presence will protect you on every side.'

or Joel 2.12--17 RSV

'Yet even now,' says the LORD,
'return to me with all your heart,
with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;
and rend your hearts and not your garments.'
Return to the LORD, your God,
for he is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love,
and repents of evil.
Who knows whether he will not turn and repent,
and leave a blessing behind him,
a cereal offering and a drink offering
for the LORD, your God?

Blow the trumpet in Zion;
sanctify a fast;
call a solemn assembly;
gather the people.
Sanctify the congregation;
assemble the elders;
gather the children,
even nursing infants.
Let the bridegroom leave his room,
and the bride her chamber.

Between the vestibule and the altar
let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep
and say, 'Spare thy people, O LORD,
and make not your heritage a reproach,
a byword among the nations.
Why should they say among the peoples,
"Where is their God?"'

or Amos 5.6--15 NEB

If you would live,resort to the Lord,
or he will break out against Joseph like fire,
fire which will devour Israel with no one to quench it;
he who made the Pleiades and Orion,
who turned darkness into morning,
and darkened day into night,
who summoned the waters of the sea,
and poured them over the earth,
who makes Taurus rise after Capella
and Taurus set hard on the rising of the Vintager--
he who does this, his name is the Lord.
You that turn justice upside down
and bring righteousness to the ground,
you that hate a man who brings the wrongdoer to court
and loath him who speaks the truth:
for all this, because you levy taxes on the poor
and extort a tribute of grain from them,
though you have built houses of hewn stone,
you shall not live in them,
though you have planted pleasant vineyards,
you shall not drink wine from them.
For I know how many your crimes are
and how countless your sins,
you who persecute the guiltless, hold men to ransom
and thrist the destitute out of court.
At that time, therefore, a prudent man will stay quiet,
for it will be an evil time.

Seek good and not evil,
that you may live,
that the Lord the God of Hosts may be firmly on your side,
as you say he is.
Hate evil and love good;
enthrone justice in the courts;
it may be that the Lord the God of Hosts
will be gracious to the survivors of Joseph.

At the end the reader may say

This is the word of the Lord.


Thanks be to God.


Psalm 5l. 1--17

This response may be used.

Have mercy on us, O Lord,
for we have sinned.

1   Have mercy on me O God in your en|during| goodness:
   according to the fullness of your compassion| blot out| my of|fences.

2   Wash me thoroughly| from my| wickedness:
   and| cleanse me| from my| sin.

3   For I acknowledge| my re|bellion:
   and my| sin is| ever · be|fore me.    R

4   Against you only have I sinned and done what is evil| in your| eyes:
   so you will be just in your sentence and| blameless| in your| judging.

5   Surely in wickedness I was| brought to| birth:
   and in| sin my| mother · con|ceived me.    R

6   You that desire truth in the| inward| parts:
   O teach me wisdom in the secret| places| of the| heart.

7   Purge me with hyssop and I| shall be| clean:
   wash me and I| shall be| whiter · than| snow.    R

8   Make me hear of| joy and| gladness:
   let the bones which| you have| broken · re|joice.

9   Hide your| face · from my| sins:
   and| blot out| all · my in|iquities.    R

10   Create in me a clean| heart O| God:
   and re|new a · right| spirit · with|in me.

11   Do not cast me| out · from your| presence:
   do not take your| holy| spirit| from me.    R

12   O give me the gladness of your| help a|gain:
   and sup|port me · with a| willing| spirit.

13   Then will I teach trans|gressors · your| ways:
   and sinners shall| turn to| you a|gain.    R

14   O Lord God of my salvation de|liver me · from| bloodshed:
   and my| tongue shall| sing of · your| righteousness.

15   O Lord| open · my| lips:
   and my| mouth shall pro|claim your| praise.    R

16   You take no pleasure in sacrifice or| I would| give it:
   burnt-|offerings · you| do not| want.

17   The sacrifice of God is a| broken| spirit:
   a broken and contrite heart O God| you will| not de|spise.    R




1 Corinthians 9.24--end NEB

You know (do you not?) that at the sports all the runners run the race, though only one wins the prize. Like them, run to win! But every athlete goes into strict training. They do it to win a fading wreath; we, a wreath that never fades. For my part, I run with a clear goal before me; I am like a boxer who does not beat the air; I bruise my own body and make it know its master, for fear that after preaching to others I should find myself rejected.

or 2 Corinthians 5.20--6.2 RSV

So we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We beseech you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Working together with him, then, we entreat you not to accept the grace of God in vain. For he says,

'At the acceptable time I have listened to you,
and helped you on the day of salvation.'
Behold, now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.

or James 4.1-10 JB

Where do these wars and battles between yourselves first start? Isn't it precisely in the desires fighting inside your own selves? You want something and you haven't got it; so you are prepared to kill. You have an ambition that you cannot satisfy; so you fight to get your way by force. Why you don't have what you want is because you don't pray for it; when you do pray and don't get it, it is because you have not prayed properly, you have prayed for something to indulge your own desires.

You are as unfaithful as adulterous wives; don't you realize that making the world your friend is making God your enemy? Anyone who chooses the world for his friend turns himself into God's enemy. Surely you don't think scripture is wrong when it says: the spirit which he sent to live in us wants us for himself alone? But he has been even more generous to us, as scripture says: 'God opposes the proud but he gives generously to the humble.' Give in to God, then; resist the devil, and he will run away from you. The nearer you go to God, the nearer he will come to you. Clean your hands, you sinners, and clear your minds, you waverers. Look at your wretched condition, and weep for it in misery; be miserable instead of laughing, gloomy instead of happy. Humble yourselves before the Lord and he will lift you up.

At the end the reader may say

This is the word of the Lord.


Thanks be to God.


A CANTICLE, A HYMN, or A PSALM may be used.




When it is announced


Glory to Christ our Saviour.

Matthew 6.1--6,16--18 NEB

Jesus said, 'Be careful not to make a show of your religion before men; if you do, no reward awaits you in your Father's house in heaven.

'Thus, when you do some act of charity, do not announce it with a flourish of trumpets, as the hypocrites do in synagogue and in the streets to win admiration from men. I tell you this: they have their reward already. No; when you do some act of charity, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing; your good deed must be secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.

'Again, when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; they love to say their prayers standing up in synagogue and at the street-corners, for everyone to see them. I tell you this: they have their reward already.

'So too when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites: they make their faces unsightly so that other people may see that they are fasting. I tell you this: they have their reward already. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that men may not see that you are fasting, but only your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees what is in secret will give you your reward.'

or Matthew 6. 16--21 NEB

Jesus said, 'When you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites: they make their faces unsightly so that other people may see that they are fasting. I tell you this: they have their reward already. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that men may not see that you are fasting, but only your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees what is secret will give you your reward.

'Do not store up for yourselves treasure on earth, where it grows rusty and moth-eaten, and thieves break in to steal it. Store up treasure in heaven, where there is no moth and no rust to spoil it, no thieves to break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.'

or Luke 18.9--14 NEB

Jesus told a parable, which was aimed at those who were sure of their own goodness and looked down on everyone else. 'Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax gatherer. The Pharisee stood up and prayed thus: "I thank you, O God, that I am not like the rest of men, greedy, dishonest, adulterous; or, for that matter, like this tax gatherer. I fast twice a week; I pay tithes on all that I get." But the other kept his distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven, but beat upon his breast, saying, " O God, have mercy on me, sinner that I am." It was this man, I tell you, and not the other, who went home acquitted of his sins. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled; and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.'

At the end the reader says

This is the Gospel of Christ.


Praise to Christ our Lord.








Let us now call to mind our sin and the infinite mercy of God.


THIS LITANY may follow if it has not already been used at section 4.

God the Father,
have mercy on us.

God the Son,
have mercy on us.

God the Holy Spirit,
have mercy on us.

Holy, blessed and glorious Trinity,
have mercy on us.

From all evil and mischief;
from pride, vanity and hypocrisy;
from envy, hatred and malice;
and from all evil intent,
Good Lord, deliver us.

From sloth, worldliness, and love of money;
from hardness of heart
and contempt for your word and your laws,
Good Lord, deliver us.

From sins of body and mind;
from the deceits of the world, the flesh, and the devil,
Good Lord, deliver us.

In all times of sorrow; in all times of joy;
in the hour of death,
and at the day of judgement,
Good Lord, deliver us.

By the mystery of your holy incarnation;
by your birth, childhood, and obedience;
by your baptism, fasting, and temptation,
Good Lord, deliver us.

By your ministry in word and work;
by your mighty acts of power;
and by your preaching of the kingdom,
Good Lord, deliver us.

By your agony and trial;
by your cross and passion;
and by your precious death and burial,
Good Lord, deliver us.

By your mighty resurrection;
by your glorious ascension;
and by your sending of the Holy Spirit,
Good Lord, deliver us.

Give us true repentance;
forgive us our sins of negligence and ignorance
and our deliberate sins;
and grant us the grace of your Holy Spirit
to amend our lives according to your holy word.
Holy God,
holy and strong,
holy and immortal,
have mercy upon us.

or the words at section 45 may be used.



SILENCE is kept for a time, after which is said


Make our hearts clean, O God;


and renew a right spirit within us.




Father eternal, giver of light and grace,
we have sinned against you and against our neighbour,
in what we have thought,
in what we have said and done,
through ignorance, through weakness,
through our own deliberate fault.
We have wounded your love,
and marred your image in us.
We are sorry and ashamed,
and repent of all our sins.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, who died for us,
forgive us all that is past;
and lead us out from darkness
to walk as children of light. Amen.





If the Imposition of Ashes is to follow, the president says


As a sign of the spirit of penitence with which we shall keep this season of preparation for Easter, I invite you to receive on your head in ash the sign of the cross, the symbol of our salvation.

God our Father,
you create us from the dust of the earth:
grant that these ashes may be for us
   a sign of our penitence
   and a symbol of our mortality;
for it is by your grace alone
that we receive eternal life
in Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.


The president and people receive the imposition of ashes, the president first receiving the imposition from another minister. At the imposition the minister says to each person

Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.
Turn away from sin and be faithful to Christ.


or he may impose ashes without use of words.

During the imposition silence may be kept, or A HYMN, ANTHEM, or PSALM may be sung (see Lectionary p. 294).


One of these two prayers may be said by the president.


God our Father,
the strength of all who put their trust in you,
mercifully accept our prayers;
and because, in our weakness,
we can do nothing good without you,
grant us the help of your grace,
that in keeping your commandments
we may please you, both in will and deed;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



Almighty God,
who forgives all who truly repent,
have mercy upon us,
pardon and deliver us from all our sins,
confirm and strengthen us in all goodness
and keep us in life eternal;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


If the Holy Communion is not to follow, section 46, Form A may be used here, after which the service concludes with THE LORD'S PRAYER, the prayer at section 40, and THE DISMISSAL (sections 42--44).


If the Holy Communion is to follow, any of the forms in section 46 may be used, and the service continues with THE PEACE.







Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
The peace of the Lord be always with you.


and also with you.


The president may say

Let us offer one another a sign of peace.

and all may exchange a sign of peace.




The bread and wine are placed on the holy table.


The president may praise God for his gifts in appropriate wods to which all may respond

Blessed be God for ever.


The offerings of the people may be collected and presented. These words may be used.

Yours, Lord, is the greatness, the power,
the glory, the splendour, and the majesty;
for everything in heaven and on earth is yours.
All things come from you,
and of your own do we give you.


At the preparation of the gifts A HYMN may be sung.





The president takes the bread and cup into his hands and replaces them on the holy table.



The president uses one of the four EUCHARISTIC PRAYERS (pp. 101--113) with either of these PROPER PREFACES.

And now we give you thanks because for our sins he was lifted high upon the cross that he might draw the whole world to himself; and, by his suffering and death, became the source of eternal salvation for all who put their trust in him.


And now we give you thanks because through him you have given us the spirit of discipline, that we may triumph over evil and grow in grace.





THE LORD'S PRAYER is said either as follows or in its traditional form.


As our Saviour taught us, so we pray.


Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours
now and for ever. Amen.



The president breaks the consecrated bread, saying

We break this bread
to share in the body of Christ.


Though we are many, we are one body,
because we all share in one bread.


Either here or during the distribution one of the following ANTHEMS may be said.

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world:
have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world:
have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world:
grant us peace.


Jesus, Lamb of God: have mercy on us.
Jesus, bearer of our sins: have mercy on us.
Jesus, redeemer of the world: give us your peace.



Before the distribution the president says

Draw near with faith. Receive the body of our Lord Jesus Christ which he gave for you, and his blood which he said for you.

Eat and drink in remembrance that he died for you, and feed on him in your hearts by faith with thanksgiving.

Jesus is the Lamb of God
who takes away the sins of the world.
Happy are those who are called to his supper.


Lord, I am not worthy to receive you,
but only say the word, and I shall be healed.



The president and people receive the Communion. Any authorized words of distribution may be used (see p. 7). During the distribution HYMNS and ANTHEMS may be sung. The Alternative Service Book provision is followed for consecration of additional bread and wine and for disposing of what remains.



The president may say

Blessed is the man who meditates day and night on the law of the Lord: he will yield fruit in due season. Psalm 1.3


Silence may be kept and A HYMN may be sung.



Either or both of the following prayers is said.



Lord our God,
grant us grace to desire you with our whole heart;
that so desiring, we may seek and find you;
and so finding, may love you;
and so loving, may hate those sins
from which you have delivered us;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



Almighty God,
We thank you for feeding us
with the Body and Blood of your son, Jesus Christ.
Through him we offer you our souls and bodies
to be a living sacrifice.
Send us out
in the power of your Spirit
to live and work
to your praise and glory. Amen.



The president may say THIS BLESSING.

Christ give you grace to grow in holiness, to deny yourselves, take up your cross, and follow him; and the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among you, and remain with you always. Amen.




Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.


In the name of Christ. Amen.



Go in the peace od Christ.


Thanks be to God.



The ministers and people depart.

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