Service of the Word for Sunday, 27 June 2021

This Service will be held on Zoom at 10.00 am. Details of the link to the Zoom session are:
Topic: Sunday Worship – 27 June 2021
Time: Jun 27, 2021 10:00 AM London
Meeting ID: 832 6294 4832
Passcode: 635591

Preacher: Revd George Mwaura
Led by Revd Ernesto Lozada-Uzuriaga

Call to Worship

Planet Earth, spinning silently through space,
we celebrate your beauty and your grace, your special place in our solar system.
We rejoice in your ocean currents, as they dance and swirl with hope
and join in praise with all your fauna and flora, as they sing their songs to the Lord.


Greetings and Welcome

Gathering Prayer

Opening responses

In the name of God, who creates planets,
the name of Jesus Christ, born on planet Earth,
and the name of the Spirit who envelops our planet.

Holy! Holy! Holy!
Earth is filled with God’s presence.

Christ, we come into your presence today, to worship in this sanctuary called Earth.

Holy! Holy! Holy!
Earth is filled with your presence.


Hymn: All things bright and beautiful

All things bright and beautiful,
all creatures great and small,
all things wise and wonderful,
the Lord God made them all.

Each little flower that opens,
each little bird that sings,
he made their glowing colours,
he made their tiny wings:

All things bright and beautiful, …

The purple-headed mountain,
the river running by,
the sunset and the morning
that brightens up the sky:

All things bright and beautiful, …

The cold wind in the winter,
the pleasant summer sun,
the ripe fruits in the garden,
he made them every one:

All things bright and beautiful, …

The tall trees in the greenwood,
the meadows where we play,
the rushes by the water
we gather every day:

All things bright and beautiful, …

He gave us eyes to see them,
and lips that we might tell
how great is God almighty,
who has made all things well:

All things bright and beautiful, …

Cecil Frances Alexander Heber (1818–1895)


Creator God, we give you our thanks in praise and worship
because you chose to be born a human being, to become a part of Earth,
to suffer, die, and rise from death to redeem humankind, renew creation,
and affirm all born of Earth and the Spirit.
But, God, we are fully aware of our failures to live as responsible stewards.

We confess that we have become alienated from Earth and viewed this planet as disposable,
a source of endless resources, a mere stopping place on our way to heaven.

We are sorry.
We have polluted the atmosphere with greenhouse gases.
We have turned our greed into global warming.
We have helped cause the artic regions to melt.
We are part of society that loves progress more than the planet.

We are sorry. We are sorry.


May Christ hear our confessions and forgive our sins against Earth.

Christ, teach us to love Earth as our home
and the planet as a precious sanctuary.


Prayer of the Week

Creator God, as we marvel and reflect on the wonders of our amazing yet fragile habitat,
we celebrate the wonders of Earth as our home.
Help us to reflect how we have polluted our planet
and teach us to be alert to the groans of creation.
May we be conscious of your presence on earth as a living sanctuary
and learn to lovingly care for this home,
through Christ our Lord, who was there during creation.


Ministry of the Word

Romans 13: 8–14

Read by Stuart Kean

Love Fulfils the Law

8 Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. 9 The commandments, ‘You shall not commit adultery,’ ‘You shall not murder,’ ‘You shall not steal,’ ‘You shall not covet,’ and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ 10 Love does no harm to a neighbour. Therefore love is the fulfilment of the law.

The Day is Near

11 And do this, understanding the present time: the hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armour of light. 13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.


This is the word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Hymn: The earth is the Lord’s

The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.
The earth is the Lord’s, the work of his hands.
The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it,
and all things were made for his glory.

The mountains are his, the seas and the islands,
the cities and towns, the houses and streets:
let rebels bow down and worship before him,
for all things were made for his glory.

[Repeat twice more]

The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.
The earth is the Lord’s, the work of his hands.
The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it,
and all things were made, yes, all thing were made,
and all things were made for his glory.

Graham Kendrick (b. 1950)

Matthew 18: 15–20

Read by Peter Lindsey

Dealing with Sin in the Church

15 ‘If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that “every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.” 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

18 ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.

19 ‘Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.’


This is the Gospel of Christ.
Praise to Christ our light.


Creation and Sustainability: Caring for Mother Earth

By Revd George Mwaura

Here is a riddle for you: ‘What did the storm say to the hurricane?’ ‘I have my eye on you.’
Here is another one: ‘What did one tornado say to the other?’ ‘Let’s twist again like we did last summer.’
Jokes about the weather and climate change are a dozen for a penny.
My favourites though are jokes on Donald Trump and his ignorance on climate change.
Listen to this one: Trump said he had a plan to tackle climate change.
All we needed to do to lower the global temperatures quickly was to switch from Fahrenheit to Centigrade!
It may be OK to poke fun at world leaders and climate deniers, but climate change is no longer misguided science or a joke.
It is an emergency and I want this church – no, I am pleading with this church – to take this as seriously as we possibly can.
We have only one earth and we cannot afford to destroy our children’s inheritance.
The damage so far, according to science, is reversible, but it will take every woman, child, and man to accomplish this.
Here in the west, we have been lucky so far, even though we have been among the worst polluters.
But our sisters and brothers in Third World countries have not been that lucky, even though they have had the least contribution to global warming.

As I said on Pentecost Sunday, we must talk about climate change in the church. Not because it is topical, but because it is an emergency.
How effective then are the words contained in Christians holy books in speaking to us at a time of crisis?
Do the scriptures challenge our politics, status quo, and the careless exploitation of the planet?
What does the Good Book have to say about the polluted waters and seas,
the tonnes of plastic waste floating in our water system and choking marine life?
In nearly all the continents, we have driven key species to extinction and our efforts to re-wilding have so far been half-hearted
and at best an exercise in engineered self-righteousness.

As a result of the rise in the earth’s temperature, the climate of the world is rapidly changing,
and with it comes increased and extreme levels of disruption to normal life.
No longer can the peasant farmers in Third World countries hope to harvest enough food to feed their families,
leave alone to take them out of poverty.
Then there is the dangerous cycle of floods, wildfires, hurricanes and other unseasonal weather patterns.
As our demand for food increases, we are on the verge of destroying the forests of the world
in Asia, the Amazon and Congo, which are essentially the lungs of the world.
Dare we hope that there are words of wisdom which can guide us in the scriptures before it is too late?

The letter from the apostle Paul to the church in Rome is a good example of scriptural wisdom we can use.
Here we find guidance as we wrestle with ways to manage the care of the earth which God gave us as a gift.
The beginning of chapter 13 of this letter to the Romans and the passage from Matthew’s gospel
both carry the theme of God’s people being obedient to God’s Commandments.
The advice to the saints that whatever they bind on earth would be bound in heaven
clearly shows that a relationship exists between the worshipping community and its Creator and between earth and heaven.
In the Romans reading, we hear the command to love our neighbours as ourselves because in obeying this command, we are fulfilling Gods will.

And so perhaps the question to ask ourselves is who our neighbours are.
If you are familiar with the parable of the Good Samaritan, then you know that this is not a new question.
Today, our neighbours are the people who are the direct recipients of our excessive living.
Those in Bangladesh living with the constant fear of floods because of climate change.
Those in my village of Mwenje in Laikipia County, Kenya who have not had a decent harvest in many years
even though their carbon footprint is zero.
Those in Australia dreading another summer of wildfires caused by drought.
Our neighbours are the key animal species we have driven to extinction, even though we were mandated to exercise stewardship over them.
The plain truth is that global warming is a crime and a sin for which all of us,
especially those in the developed world and the churches, are guilty of.
So, here is a question for all of us: How do we as a global family and Christians turn this around, because we are clearly going against Gods will?
How can we love our neighbour in the current climate-change crisis?

The global response to the killing of George Floyd in America last spring has shown us
that it is possible to mobilise even on a global scale for a good cause.
Right now, I cannot think of a better and more urgent cause than climate change.
The Church of Christ the Cornerstone in conjunction with Citizens:MK is involved in many good campaigns that are very worthy,
and one of them is social justice.
But we must remember that there cannot be true justice if we forget the mandate to seek justice for the earth and the created creatures.
So really the question is: How do we find justice and equity for our neighbours, the planet, and all other forms of life on this earth?
If we are honest and driven by a sense of justice, there is enough for all of us on this planet; it is greed that makes fair distribution impossible.
Multinational firms who destroy millions of acres every year to plant crops and raise cattle in Indonesia and Brazil can no longer go unchallenged.
For far too long as church and global consumers, we have kept quiet as the destruction of the environment in far-flung places
has gone on because it was not on our doorsteps.
Well, now it is, in the form of economic migrants coming here on boats as their part of the world becomes inhospitable!
It is time to wake up!

Careless destruction of the earth’s resources is not part of God’s will and we must oppose it at every opportunity.
COVID-19 was not directly caused by climate change.
But the infectious diseases that are spread by pathogens jumping from animals to people are becoming common
because human beings are encroaching on natural animal habitats through environmental destruction.
We must make the environment a priority, just as we did in our fight against the pandemic.
As a church, we must become an eco-church.
This will demand a radical, deliberate co-existence with all God’s created creatures and the planet.
If we purposed to achieve social, economic and ecological justice for our neighbours and the created world,
we will have come a long way in fulfilling God’s command to love our neighbours as ourselves.

As individuals, we must take responsibility, because we too have played part in creating this mess.
We must become intentional, for example, in our desire to change to clean energy where possible,
be activist and write to our MPs and lobby the government. Refuse to dump our plastic waste willy-nilly.
Reduce our travel and meat consumption to mitigate against greenhouse gasses emission.
As individuals we might not make a humongous difference, but collectively we can change the world.
This is not a fight we can leave to scientists and governments alone – we must get involved.
Let me finish with the words from the apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans. Listen:
We know the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth until the present times (Romans 8: 22).
Friends, I can hear the groaning of our planet in need of renewal.
Roll up your sleeves; it is going to be a tough and dirty fight. May the spirit be with us.


Musical response

Affirmation of Faith

Women: We believe that God creates all things, renews all things, and celebrates all things.

Men: We believe Earth is a sanctuary, a sacred planet filled with God’s presence,
a home for us to share with our kin.

Women: We believe that God became flesh and blood, became a part of Earth,
a human being called Jesus Christ, who lived and breathed and spoke among us,
suffered and died on a cross, for all human beings and for all creation.

Men: We believe that the risen Jesus is the Christ at the core of creation
reconciling all things to God, renewing all creation and filling the cosmos.

Women: We believe the Spirit renews life in creation,
groans in empathy with a suffering creation,
and waits with us for the rebirth of creation.

All: We believe that with Christ we will rise
and with Christ we will celebrate a new creation.



Led by Don Head

Let us share our concerns to God and ask for his guidance for the coming week.

Heavenly Father, we are halfway through the year and thinking about what we have to do,
as individuals and as a church, when life opens up more, with meeting in greater numbers,
with less restrictions and more places where we can travel.

Some of us will return to commuting or attending the workplace regularly.
We are all concerned about overload to our current timetable of life.
In his time on earth, our Lord had overload and crowds on his way to see an eminent man
in the Temple at Jerusalem when he was interrupted.
Help us, when we feel overloaded not to ignore unexpected things or people
that you bring into our lives.

We pray for all those who will visit our church building in the coming week.
May we use our building to serve our community, to give us opportunity to renew old friendships
and to make new ones, always meeting others on their terms and not from our own pre-conceptions.
Keep us aware that what seems like a chance meeting interrupting our agenda
can be for the other person a life-saving experience like it was for the woman healed (as related in chapter 5 of Mark’s Gospel).

Lord of all power and might, author and giver of all good things;
graft into our hearts the love of your name, increase in us true faith,
nourish us with all goodness in service and by your great mercy keep us in the same.

Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

Loving Father we bring before you our world under stress.
We are using too much of earth’s resources and causing the balance in climate
and different environmental features to become endangered.
We give thanks for the delight we can take from majestic trees in our garden city.
We do not want to lose that reminder of your continuing creation of a beautiful earth.
Help us to see how we can be part of your creation without destroying its beauty.

The world is under stress as we humans divide into factions: rich against poor,
democracies against those ruled by single powerful factions,
those with education against those uninformed.
There are places where people are in need, hurting and dying as a result of these divisions.

Almighty God, creator of the universe,
at the start of another week we feel helpless in the face of our world’s suffering,
so once more I offer back to you what you have given to me, this ordinary, everyday life.
I ask you to take it into your hands that it may be used to bring
even a flicker of justice and mercy into this world;
a candle for peace, a promise of hope,
by your grace may I move in your spirit of love
through this week and through all the coming days.

Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

We pray for all those known to us who are in need of our prayers
that we now name before you in our hearts.

[A short silence]

Support all who care for the sick and frail.

We pray for all young people in education and all those
who have been disadvantaged by the restrictions on movement and meetings.
Support all teachers and those seeking to give opportunities
to bring people excluded from productive society to find a place
where all can feel themselves to be a welcome contributor to their community.

Christ the healer, we give you thanks for all places of healing,
places where we can be still and discover afresh the wonder and immensity of your love.
Help each of us to be part of the healing for the world.

Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.

Heavenly Father, we offer these prayers in the name of your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ.


The Lord’s Prayer

As our Saviour taught us, let us 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.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and for ever.


The Peace

Peace to you from God who is our Father.
Peace from Jesus Christ who is our peace.
Peace from the Holy Spirit who gives us life and desires we live reconciled lives
with the earth and its inhabitants.

May the peace of the God be with you.
And also with you.

Let us offer one another a sign of peace in the agreed protocol!


Live streaming of services – Coming soon!

During the next couple of weeks some new cameras and equipment will be installed in the Worship Area
and this means we will soon be able to broadcast our church services live on YouTube.

We hope the first live-streamed service will be at 10.00 am on Sunday, 11 July 2021.

This exciting news means we will all be able to worship at the same service once more,
whether via the internet at home or attending in person.

Most of us who attend the service in person will be happy to be part of the live broadcast and appear on screen as part of the congregation.

However, there might be some people who, for whatever reason, do not wish to be filmed.
We would like to reassure those in this group that there will be protocols in place to protect their wish for privacy.
A large area of seating won’t be covered by the cameras and people will be able to take a full part in the service
without appearing in any broadcast.
More details about this will be available shortly. So please don’t worry!

Pastoral Committee

The Pastoral Committee will be meeting via Zoom at 2.00 pm this Tuesday (29 June 2021).


Thank you
to everyone who has continued giving through our regular schemes during these past months.
Your generosity has been amazing and much appreciated.
We couldn’t have carried on without you.

We have various ways in which you can continue to give your offering in support of the Church.

For details please contact the Stewardship Secretary, Janet Trimnell, at

Full details are also available on our website at:

Hymn: For the beauty of the earth

For the beauty of the earth,
for the beauty of the skies,
for the love which from our birth
over and around us lies,
Lord of all, to thee we raise
this our sacrifice of praise.

For the beauty of each hour
of the day and of the night,
hill and vale and tree and flower,
sun and moon and stars of light:
Lord of all, to thee we raise
this our sacrifice of praise.

For the joy of human love,
brother, sister, parent, child,
friends on earth, and friends above,
pleasures pure and undefiled:
Lord of all, to thee we raise
this our sacrifice of praise.

For each perfect gift of thine,
to our race so freely given,
graces human and divine,
flowers of earth and buds of heaven:
Lord of all, to thee we raise
this our sacrifice of praise.

For thy church which evermore
lifteth holy hands above,
offering up on every shore
her pure sacrifice of love,
Lord of all, to thee we raise
this our sacrifice of praise.

F.S. Pierpoint (1835–1963)

Creation Prayer

Jesus Christ, teach us to empathise with Earth.
Make our spirits sensitive to the cries of creation,
cries for justice from the land, the seas and the skies.

Jesus Christ, make our faith sensitive to the groans of the Spirit in creation,
groans of longing for a new creation.

Jesus Christ, make our hearts sensitive to the songs of our kin,
songs of celebration from the sea, the forest and the air.

Christ, teach us to care.



Christ calls you to be his disciples,
to serve him with love and compassion,
to serve Earth by caring for creation.

We will remember our planet home!
We will groan with all creation!
We will celebrate with Earth!

May the Spirit of God, who is above all and in all and through all,
fill you with the knowledge of God’s presence in Earth and with the joy Christ within you.
And the Blessings of God Almighty,
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit,
rest and remain with us today and always.



Church, go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

In the name of Christ, we will.