Trinity 8

8th SUNDAY AFTER TRINITY Hymns 377, 387, 304, 393

FIRST READING Genesis 29.15-28 Then Laban said to Jacob, ‘Because you are my kinsman, should you therefore serve me for nothing? Tell me, what shall your wages be?’ Now Laban had two daughters; the name of the elder was Leah, and the name of the younger was Rachel. Leah’s eyes were lovely, and Rachel was graceful and beautiful. Jacob loved Rachel; so he said, ‘I will serve you seven years for your younger daughter Rachel.’ Laban said, ‘It is better that I give her to you than that I should give her to any other man; stay with me.’ So Jacob served seven years for Rachel, and they seemed to him but a few days because of the love he had for her. Then Jacob said to Laban, ‘Give me my wife that I may go in to her, for my time is completed.’ So Laban gathered together all the people of the place, and made a feast. But in the evening he took his daughter Leah and brought her to Jacob; and he went in to her. (Laban gave his maid Zilpah to his daughter Leah to be her maid.) When morning came, it was Leah! And Jacob said to Laban, ‘What is this you have done to me? Did I not serve with you for Rachel? Why then have you deceived me?’ Laban said, ‘This is not done in our country—giving the younger before the firstborn. Complete the week of this one, and we will give you the other also in return for serving me for another seven years.’ Jacob did so, and completed her week; then Laban gave him his daughter Rachel as a wife.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM 105 Response: The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.

Give thanks to the Lord, tell his name, make known his deeds among the peoples.
O sing to him, sing his praise; tell all his wonderful works! R

Give thanks to the Lord, tell his name, make known his deeds among the peoples.
O sing to him, sing his praise; tell all his wonderful works! R

Be proud of his holy name, Let the hearts that seek the Lord rejoice.
Consider the Lord and his strength; constantly seek his face. R

O children of Abraham, his servant, O sons of the Jacob he chose.
He, the Lord, is our God: his judgements prevail in all the earth.

He remembers his covenant for ever, his promise for a thousand generations,
the covenant he made with Abraham, the oath he swore to Isaac. R

SECOND READING Romans 8.26-39 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn within a large family. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified. What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

GOSPEL Matthew 13.31-33,44-52 He put before them another parable: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in his field; it is the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the greatest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.’ He told them another parable: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.’ ‘The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. ‘Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it. ‘Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea and caught fish of every kind; when it was full, they drew it ashore, sat down, and put the good into baskets but threw out the bad. So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. ‘Have you understood all this?’ They answered, ‘Yes.’ And he said to them, ‘Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like the master of a household who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.’

Could you pass this sheet on to someone else who might like to see it?


A very warm welcome to any new readers, and to visitors and newcomers to St Michael's. A special welcome and thanks to Fr Paul, our celebrant this morning, who will also kindly be saying Mass for us on Thursday at 10.30 am. If you are new to St Michael's, do join us in the Vestry Hall after the service, so that we can welcome you properly.

Next Saturday (5th August) is the day of the Richborough Festival at St Albans. Mass in the Cathedral at noon, and then bring your own picnic for lunch in Bishop Norman's garden. This is a lovely opportunity to get together with people from other parishes in the Richborough family for inspiring liturgy and a convivial picnic, and also to mark our appreciation of the help and support of Bishop Norman over a number of years. If going to St Albans by car, could you offer anyone a lift?

Thank you to everyone who has worked to prepare the Vestry Hall for its re-decoration. Please speak to Martyn or Paul if you are able and willing to help with the painting later this month.

An opportunity for this autumn? Canterbury Diocese is running an eight-session “Deepening Discipleship” course which will take place on Wednesday evenings via Zoom, beginning on 27th September – thus participants will not be faced with cold and tiring journeys in the evenings. This course encourages participants to reflect on, and develop, their Christian life, and it also provides a starting-point for anyone who is exploring the possibility of undertaking lay ministry. Applications close on September 13th. Visit Deepening Discipleship - Diocese of Canterbury ( for further information and an application form. (Could God be calling you to serve St Michael's as a lay minister?)

Looking ahead: Saturday, September 9th, 10 am – 4 pm, is a Heritage Open Day. As our church is a listed building, we want our community – and visitors from further afield – to be able to enjoy our lovely Angel Windows, and, God willing, to get a sense of the beauty of holiness as St Michael's tries to show it. We shall need volunteers to bake cakes/biscuits, make tea and coffee, welcome visitors and act as stewards, answer questions, and sign in the Ride and Stride participants – including Catherine - who will be doing their sponsored walk or cycle-ride on the same day in aid of the Friends of Kent Churches. This is an important opportunity to build up our community links and to encourage people to explore our building - and what it stands for. Please put the date in your diary and see how you could help.

From our Tower: Our Tower will be welcoming visiting ringers on Saturday, 12th August, from 3 pm to 4.30 pm, and we all look forward to hearing our lovely bells being in action, and being appreciated, beyond the usual routine.

We look forward to welcoming Archdeacon Andrew, who will be preaching at Mass on Sunday, August 13th. It will be good to see him at St Michael's again – please try to be present to greet him.

Bishop Norman will be leading a weekend pilgrimage to Walsingham for members of Richborough family parishes, from Friday 8th to Sunday 10th September. To book, please contact the Shrine accommodation office on 01328 820239, indicating when you book that this is for the Richborough Family Pilgrimage. This may be easier for many people to manage than a midweek pilgrimage, and will also of course be less expensive. If you have never been to Walsingham and are inclined to be hesitant, this might be for you. Bishop Norman's connection with Walsingham goes back many years (he was once vicar of that parish), and a Walsingham pilgrimage under his leadership should prove to be a spiritual shot in the arm!

Readers' List for August – but please note that at holiday time it may be all hands on deck….Katja and Eleanor may be “reserves” if you need an understudy!

August 6 (Transfiguration) OT and Ps Mike Trout, NT Margaret Gatehouse

August 13 OT and Ps William Danes-Volkov, NT Catherine Garland

August 20 OT and Ps Ralph Baldock, NT Alison Heywood

August 27 OT and Ps Eta/Zangi, NT Paul Jones

TODAY (Sunday 30th July) is the day of the Barbecue at St Michael's, Harbledown, which takes place from 3 to 6 pm. A chance to get together with people from Resolution parishes in this diocese and enjoy some excellent Harbledown cooking!