St Mary’s Easter Day service

Bulletin for Easter Day 2020


Thank you to those who have been in contact by phone, WhatsApp and email during the week. Please continue to do so, even if just for a chat. I remain of course anxious to help anyone during these difficult days. My thought and prayer for you all.

The Scottish Episcopal Church will this Sunday be broadcasting video coverage of its Eucharistic service via its website, social media channels and YouTube channel.  The web page for the broadcast is located at The website will also contain a downloadable video and audio format of the service.

For those who prefer devotion in another form, the following is a complete service for Easter Day

The Easter Service

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, Amen.

The Confession

Let us confess our sins to our Heavenly Father:

Jesus Christ, risen Master and triumphant Lord,

we come to you in sorrow for our sins,

and confess our weakness and unbelief,

Lord hear us and help us

We have lived in our own strength,

and not by the power of your resurrection.

In your mercy, forgive us.

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,

Lord hear us and help us

We have lived for this world alone,

and doubted our home in heaven,

In your mercy, forgive us.

Lord hear us and help us

O God enthroned on high

Filling the earth with your glory:

Holy is your name

Lord God Almighty

In our sinfulness we cry to you

To take our guilt away,

And to cleanse our lips to speak of your word

Through Jesus Christ our Lord



The Almighty and merciful Lord, grant me pardon and absolution of all my sins. Amen.

The Ministry of the Word


God of glory

By the raising of your Son

you have broken the chains of death and hell:

fill your Church with faith and hope;

for a new day has dawned

and the way to life stands open

in our Saviour Jesus Christ.


First Reading Acts 10:34-43

Second Reading Col 3:1-4

The Gospel John 20:1-18

20 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put him!”

So Peter and the other disciple started for the tomb. Both were running, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there but did not go in. Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. (They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead.) 10 Then the disciples went back to where they were staying.

11 Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb 12 and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot.

13 They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying?”

“They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.” 14 At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus.

15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”

Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”

16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.”

She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”).

17 Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’”

18 Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.

The Creed

You Christ are the King of Glory

the eternal Son of the Father

You overcame the sting of death:

and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.

You are seated at God’s right hand in glory:

we believe that you will come to be our judge

Come then Lord and help your people:

bought with the price of your own blood.

and bring us with your saints

to glory everlasting

The Address

‘This joyful Eastertide, away with sin and sorrow.
My Love, the Crucified, hath sprung to life this morrow’.

These are the opening words of an Easter Carol written towards the end of the 19th century.

Are you well? This is a perennial question asked by everyone at present. The answer expected of course is ‘yes, very well, thank you’. It’s what needs to be said and heard presently to preserve often fragile morale. Our poor Prime Minister was reported last Sunday evening to be in ‘good spirits’ He would say that of course. Unbeknown to most, he was hospitalized and very ill, whilst carrying to his bed the immense burden of office.

Are you joyful this Eastertide? In truth, I find it difficult to summon the happiness associated with the season. Others tell me, and rightly so, that the church is more than just a building. The Archbishop of Canterbury has recently assured us that ‘Jesus is quite up to date with technology’ But celebrating Easter through a screen is simply not the same. Easter Day is associated with beautiful church decorations, glorious music and a sense of fellowship with other worshippers. For the first time in a thousand years, none of this has been possible. We do our best then to be in ‘good spirits’, but it is very hard.

The media rightly describe Mr. Johnson as a ‘big animal’, a charismatic and influential figure.    When news of his admission to hospital broke last week, a wave of anxiety swept the nation. Who was now to lead us through these dark days? It gives some idea of the consternation that must have seized Simon Peter and the other disciples when Jesus was taken from them. Many of them were too terrified by events to be at their master’s crucifixion.  Consequently, they neglected to ensure that he even received a dignified burial.

 Nevertheless, Simon Peter and another disciple came to the tomb three days later. Expecting to find at least Christ’s body, they found nothing. That was probably the last straw: failing to understand, they returned to their homes.

They were not the only visitors to the tomb that morning. There was also Mary Magdalene. Mary was a common name in the scriptures so hence her additional identification. Little is known of her, save that Christ healed her from a life-sapping illness.  Thereafter, renewed in body and spirit, Mary served and followed Christ with utmost devotion.

Unlike the disciples, Mary Magdalene watched all day at the cross, witnessing Christ’s suffering and death.  Mary, visiting the tomb after the disciples, was also distressed to find it empty. Her trust though in Christ remained unshaken and her deep reservoir of faith told her to wait.  Later, through the half light of the early morning, she heard Christ’s voice. In great joy she responded Rabboni, master. When seeing Christ’s form, she naturally hastened to embrace it. Instead, she was commanded to tell the disciples what she had witnessed.

To return to the present. What will happen to our nation this week, and the next? How will future generations cope with the difficulties that undoubtedly will result? We search the darkness of the future just as the disciples and Mary peered into the tomb.

We ask then for the deep, hopeful and patient love in the risen Christ that was found in Mary Magdalene; she who was truly in good spirits.  

This joyful Eastertide, away with sin and sorrow.
My Love, the Crucified, hath sprung to life this morrow.

 The Prayers

Keep us, good Lord,
under the shadow of your mercy
in this time of uncertainty and distress.
Sustain and support the anxious and fearful,
and lift up all who are brought low;
that we may rejoice in your comfort
knowing that nothing can separate us from your love
in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Lord Jesus Christ,
you taught us to love our neighbour,
and to care for those in need
as if we were caring for you.
In this time of anxiety, give us strength
to comfort the fearful, to tend the sick,
and to assure the isolated
of our love, and your love,
for your name’s sake.

God of compassion,
be close to those who are ill, afraid or in isolation.
In their loneliness, be their consolation;
in their anxiety, be their hope;
in their darkness, be their light;
through him who suffered alone on the cross,
but reigns with you in glory,
Jesus Christ our Lord.

For hospital staff and medical researchers

Gracious God,
give skill, sympathy and resilience
to all who are caring for the sick,
and your wisdom to those searching for a cure.
Strengthen them with your Spirit,
that through their work many will be restored to health;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

At Easter Day

We give thanks O God our Father for the glorious resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ from the dead;

for his victory over sin and the grave;

for his risen presence in our daily lives;

for his promise of life immortal with him.

Accept our praise and teach us day by day to live rejoicingly in the faith of him who died for us, and rose again, and is alive for evermore


The Comfortable Words, Preface. and Sanctus.

Hear what comfortable words our Saviour Christ saith unto all who truly turn to Him.
Come unto Me, all ye that travail and are heavy laden, and I will refresh you. St. Matt. xi. 28.
So God loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son, to the end that all that believe in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. St. John iii. 16.

Hear also what Saint Paul saith.
This is a true saying, and worthy of all men to be received, That Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. 1 Tim. i. 15.

Hear also what Saint John saith.
If any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the Righteous; and He is the Propitiation for our sins. 1 St. John ii. 1, 2.

Therefore with Angels and Archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we laud and magnify Thy glorious Name; evermore praising Thee, and saying,
HOLY, HOLY, HOLY, Lord God of hosts, Heaven and earth are full of Thy glory: Glory be to Thee, O Lord Most High. Amen.

An act of commitment

In union, O Lord with the faithful, I desire to offer Thee praise and thanksgiving. I present to Thee my soul and body with the earnest wish that may always be united to Thee. And since I can not now receive Thee sacramentally, I beseech Thee to come spiritually into my heart. I unite myself to Thee, and embrace Thee with all the affections of my soul. Let nothing ever separate Thee from me. May I live and die in Thy love. Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer

As our Saviour Christ has commanded and taught us, so we pray:

Our Father,

who art in heaven,

hallowed be thy name;

thy kingdom come;

thy will be done;

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread;

and forgive us our trespasses,

as we forgive those

who 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.


A recording of this hymn can be accessed via YouTube

   1        Jesus lives!  thy terrors now
        can, O death, no more appal us;
            Jesus lives!  by this we know
        thou, O grave, canst not enthral us.

   2          Jesus lives!  henceforth is death
        but the gate of life immortal:
            this shall calm our trembling breath,
        when we pass its gloomy portal.

   3          Jesus lives!  for us he died;
        then, alone to Jesus living,
            pure in heart may we abide,
        glory to our Saviour giving.

   4          Jesus lives!  our hearts know well
        naught from us his love shall sever;
            life nor death nor powers of hell
        tear us from his keeping ever.

   5          Jesus lives!  to him the throne
        over all the world is given:
            may we go where he is gone,
        rest and reign with him in heaven.

The Grace

May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with me always. Amen.