EASTER VIGIL, EASTER CEREMONIES AND FIRST MASS OF EASTER - SATURDAY EVENING 7.30 pm – Guest Preacher The Archbishop of Canterbury. The Service begins in the Vestry Hall. Don't forget that clocks go forward tonight!

EASTER DAY 10.30 Sung Mass Hymns NEH 110, 103, 107, 117

FIRST READING Acts 10.34-43 Then Peter began to speak to them: ‘I truly understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ—he is Lord of all. That message spread throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John announced: how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power; how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. We are witnesses to all that he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; but God raised him on the third day and allowed him to appear, not to all the people but to us who were chosen by God as witnesses, and who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead. All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.’

*RESPONSORIAL PSALM 118 *Response: This day was made by the Lord: we rejoice and are glad. **

1. Give thanks to the Lord for he is good: for his love has no end.

Let the sons of Israel say: “His love has no end.” R.

2. The Lord’s right hand has triumphed; his right hand raised me up.

I shall not die: I shall live: and recount his deeds. R.

3. The stone which the builders rejected: has become the corner stone.

This is the work of the Lord: a marvel in our eyes. R.

SECOND READING 1 Corinthians 15.1-11 Now I should remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you—unless you have come to believe in vain. For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to someone untimely born, he appeared also to me. For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace towards me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them—though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe.

GOSPEL John 20.1-18 Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.’ Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went towards the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. Then the disciples returned to their homes. But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. They said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’ She said to them, ‘They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.’ When she had said this, she turned round and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? For whom are you looking?’ Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’ She turned and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabbouni!’ (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, ‘Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”’ Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, ‘I have seen the Lord’; and she told them that he had said these things to her.

NB: At the end of Mass we sing the Regina Coeli – you'll find the words inside your Mass booklet.


Priest-in-Charge Fr John Ainslie (revjohnainslie@gmail.com; 01628 629827)

A very Happy and Blessed Easter to you all

from Fr John, Eleanor and our Churchwardens

Fr John, Eleanor, Jonathan, Paul.

A very warm welcome to any new readers, and to visitors and newcomers to St Michael's. 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.

Bishop Norman writes: “Dear All at St Michael's, Thank you so much for the generous and most beautiful gift of an Icon of the Archangel which I will treasure. And for your kind words and retirement frieze in the hall. It has been a privilege and a joy to share in the life of Saint Michael's and I'm delighted with the appointment of Father John. With blessings for your future flourishing, +Norman.

A party from St Michael's was in the crowded crypt of the Cathedral for Bishop Norman's last Chrism Mass – an emotional and magnificent occasion – and heard warm words from the Archbishop of Canterbury, commending Bishop Norman as an example of what a bishop should be, and affirming the place of the Richborough family, and other Resolution parishes, as an essential element in the Church of England. “This will be a large mitre to fill,” he said. It will indeed – and Bishop Norman takes with him our prayers for a happy and fulfilling retirement.

Warmest thanks to everyone who has made our worship and parish life so special during this Holy Week and Easter – servers, readers, musicians, cleaners-and-polishers, washers-and-ironers, caterers, litterpickers, sound engineer, ringers, sidespersons, sacristan, flower-arrangers …. the list goes on, and has to include Archbishop Justin, whom we were most privileged to have with us for the Easter Vigil, and Fr John, for the unfailing calm and cheerfulness with which, having been in office for only a few days, he has presided over Holy Week and Easter in a new parish.

Easter doesn't stop here! The Easter season continues until the Ascension, giving us time to reflect more deeply on the wonder of the Resurrection and what it means to us now. Why not make next Sunday, 7th April, a special part of the process? At 5pm that day there will be a Service of Music and Readings for Eastertide (format along the lines of a carol service), with a gathered choir led and accompanied by Gareth James. There will be opportunities for congregational singing too – Hallelujah! Do come, and invite some friends!

The Parish Electoral Roll is now being updated. If you have become a regular St Michael's worshipper (or even if you are not-so-regular but live in the parish) you are eligible to be on the Roll. This gives you voting rights at the Annual Meeting, and entitles you to stand for office if you so wish. Please see Martyn and collect a form from the back of church. Closing date: April 7th.

Copies of the FREE 3-monthly publicationTogether are in the narthex awaiting readers. Do take one, and find out what's happening in some parishes like our own elsewhere in the country.

Readers' List for April: Many thanks, as always, to all our readers. If unable to read on the day listed, please try to arrange a swap with another reader.

Sunday 7th April: Acts and psalm Alison Heywood, NT William Danes-Volkov
Sunday 14th April: Acts and psalm Mike Trout, NT Margaret Gatehouse
Sunday 21st April: Acts and psalm Team Kwalombota, NT Catherine Garland
Sunday 28th April Acts and psalm Ralph Baldock, NT Eleanor Relle.

From our Tower: Kent County Association Maidstone, Kent, St Michael and All Angels

Friday, 22 March 2024 in 41m (6–1–24 in C): 1296 Spliced Surprise Minor (2m)

720 London; 576 Cambridge; 18 com; atw.

  1. Janice Byrne
  2. Jacqueline Barlow
  3. Philip Jarvis
  4. Mark Elvers
  5. Stephen Coaker
  6. Neil Jones (C)

An 89th birthday compliment to May Newlands. Also to welcome Father John and Rosa to St Michael's.

(There is much more to report from theTower – please watch this space next week!)

We pray for sick people everywhere, including: Paul, Margaret, Ellie, Pauline, Rue, Fr Leon, Antony, Fran, Ellie, Tom, Joseph, Peter, Joan, Margaret, Lindsay, Glynis, Ethan, Sarah, Yvonne, HM The King and Catherine, Princess of Wales.

And among the departed: Clementina Brown, Joy Littlewood, Peter Milton, Janet Hilda Carden.

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