Holy Communion for Ash Wednesday – Live Streamed – 14 February 2024

Preacher: Revd George Mwaura
: Revd Ernesto Lozada-Uzuriaga

Prayer of Approach

We meet by the grace of God in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

The Lord be with you.
And also with you.

Loving God, on this Ash Wednesday,
the first day of Lent we come together seeking your presence,
offering our worship, and asking for guidance.
Lord, hear our prayer

We come, remembering once more the temptation of Jesus in the wilderness,
and his refusal to give way.
Lord, hear our prayer

We come remembering those days forty days and nights of trial,
that time of prayer and meditation, preparation for the future.
Lord, hear our prayer

We come remembering the life, the death,
the resurrection and exaltation that followed.
Lord, hear our prayer

Loving God, help us, learning from his example,
to use this season wisely making time to hear your voice
and reflect on your word.
Lord, hear our prayer

Help us to honestly examine ourselves,
carefully and prayerfully searching our hearts.
Lord, hear our prayer

Help us to see ourselves as we really are,
and as you would have us be, ready to follow you
and do your will, no matter what the cost.
Lord, hear our prayer

Help us to know where we are faithful to you and where we fail,
recognising our strength and also our weaknesses
Lord, hear our prayer

Living God, give us strength to stand before your searching gaze, and accept your verdict,
humility to accept your correction and receiving forgiveness,
wisdom to hear your word and feed on it through faith.
So in the days ahead may we grow closer to you In the likeness of Christ.
Lord, hear our prayer.


Merciful Father, we confess to you, to one another,
and to the whole communion of saints in heaven and on earth,
that we have sinned against you by our own fault in thought, word and deed;
by what we have done, and by what we have left undone.

We have not loved you with our whole heart and mind and strength.
Have mercy on us, Lord.

We have not loved neighbours as ourselves.
We have not forgiven others, as we have been forgiven.
Have mercy on us, Lord.

We have been deaf to your call to serve as Christ served us.
We have not been true to the mind of Christ.
We have grieved your Holy Spirit.
Have mercy on us, Lord.

We confess to you, Lord, all our past unfaithfulness, the pride, hypocrisy, and impatience of our lives.
Have mercy on us, Lord.

Our self-indulgent appetites and ways, and our exploitation of other people,
We confess to you, Lord.

Our anger at our own frustration, and our envy of those more fortunate than ourselves.
We confess to you, Lord.

Our intemperate love of worldly goods and comforts, and our dishonesty in daily life and work,
We confess to you, Lord.

Our negligence in prayer and worship, and our failure to commend the faith that is in us,
We confess to you, Lord.


Accept our repentance, Lord, for the wrongs we have done;
for our blindness to human need and suffering,
and our indifference to injustice and cruelty.
Accept our repentance, Lord.

For all false judgements, for uncharitable thoughts toward our neighbours,
and for our prejudice and contempt toward those who differ from us.
Accept our repentance, Lord.

For our waste and pollution of your creation, and our lack of concern for those who come after us.
Accept our repentance, Lord.

Restore us, good Lord, and let your anger depart from us.
Hear us, Lord, for your mercy is great.


Imposition of Ashes

Almighty God, from the dust of the earth, you have created us.
May these ashes be for us a sign of our mortality and penitence,
and a reminder that only by your gracious gift are we given eternal life;
through Jesus Christ our Saviour.

The Minister will sign you with ashes saying,
Remember you are dust, and to dust you shall return.

After all have received the service continues with the following:

Accomplish in us, O God, the work of your salvation.
That we may show forth your glory in the world.
By the cross and passion of your Son, our Lord,
bring us with all your saints to the joy of his resurrection.



Hear the good news: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.
He gave power to his disciples to declare and pronounce to his people, being penitent,
the absolution and remission of their sins.
I declare to you, therefore, that God is just,
and may be trusted to forgive your sins and cleanse you from every kind of wrong.

In the name of Christ, I tell you, your sins are forgiven.

Ministry of the Word

Isaiah 58: 1–12

True Fasting

1 ‘Shout it aloud, do not hold back.
Raise your voice like a trumpet.
Declare to my people their rebellion
and to the descendants of Jacob their sins.
2 For day after day they seek me out;
they seem eager to know my ways,
as if they were a nation that does what is right
and has not forsaken the commands of its God.
They ask me for just decisions
and seem eager for God to come near them.

3 “Why have we fasted,” they say,
“and you have not seen it?
Why have we humbled ourselves,
and you have not noticed?”

‘Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please
and exploit all your workers.
4 Your fasting ends in quarrelling and strife,
and in striking each other with wicked fists.
You cannot fast as you do today
and expect your voice to be heard on high.
5 Is this the kind of fast I have chosen,
only a day for people to humble themselves?
Is it only for bowing one’s head like a reed
and for lying in sackcloth and ashes?
Is that what you call a fast,
a day acceptable to the Lord?

6 ‘Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?
7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter –
when you see the naked, to clothe them,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.
9 Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say: here am I.

‘If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
with the pointing finger and malicious talk,
10 and if you spend yourselves on behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.
11 The Lord will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.
12 Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins
and will raise up the age-old foundations;
you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls,
Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.


Matthew 6: 1–6 & 16–21

Giving to the Needy

1 ‘Be careful not to practise your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.

2 ‘So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honoured by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.


5 ‘And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.


16 ‘When you fast, do not look sombre as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show ot hers they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. 17 But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18 so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Treasures in heaven

19 ‘Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.’



By Revd George Mwaura


The Peace

God has called us to live in peace.
The peace of God be always with you.
and also with you.

Let us offer one another a sign of peace.

Holy Communion

Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation.
Through your goodness we have this bread to offer,
which earth has given and human hands have made.
It will become for us the bread of life.
Blessed be God for ever.

Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation.
Through your goodness we have this wine to offer,
fruit of the vine and work of human hands.
It will become our spiritual drink.
Blessed be God for ever.

The Lord is here.
His Spirit is with us.

Lift up your hearts.
We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give thanks and praise.

Almighty God, good Father to us all, your face is turned towards your world.
In love you gave us Jesus your Son to rescue us from sin and death.
Your Word goes out to call us home to the city where angels sing your praise.

We join with them in heaven’s song:
Holy, holy, holy Lord,
God of power and might,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest.
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.

We bless the name of Jesus, bone of our bone, flesh of our flesh,
whose brokenness and suffering makes love real,
who on the night in which he was betrayed took bread,
gave thanks, broke it and gave it to his disciples saying,

“Take, eat. This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”

After supper he took the cup saying,

“Drink from this, all of you, this is my blood given for you.
Do this whenever you drink it in remembrance of me.”

This is the mystery of our faith.
Christ has died:
Christ is risen:
Christ will come again.

Therefore, as we eat this bread and drink this cup,
we acknowledge brokenness as a path to truth.
We long for the bread of tomorrow: eternally broken and so able to nourish.
We long for the new wine of the kingdom: continuously poured out that thirst may be quenched.

Send your Spirit on us now,
that by these gifts we may feed on Christ with opened eyes and hearts on fire.
May we and all who share this food offer ourselves to live for you
and be welcomed at your feast in heaven, where all creation worships you,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit:
Blessing and honour and glory and power
be yours forever and ever.

The Lord’s Prayer

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.

The Communion

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.

After Communion

Lord Jesus Christ, we thank you that you have satisfied our hunger and our thirst
with living bread and living wine.
Go with us now, and help us to share what we have received,
so that those we meet may glimpse a little of your love
and through coming to know you find nourishment for their souls.


Final Blessing

Go as those marked as God’s beloved.
Look at those you meet and remember each one is also God’s beloved.
Go knowing your days on earth are numbered.
Make the most of each day you are given by showing kindness and fighting for justice.
Go to embark on this Lenten journey.
Go where God sends you to do God’s work.

And the blessing of God Almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be amongst you and remain with you always.