Madonna 7 Child Blog

Service for the 4th Sunday in Lent – Mothering Sunday – 19th March 2023

Welcome to St Paul’s Athens,   especially if you are here for the first time or visiting Athens. In the Anglican Tradition this Sunday in Lent is observed as Mothering Sunday.

We also welcome to this service the family of Mary Rosamund Taylor who died recently aged 101yrs. Mary was a long-standing member of this congregation. The flowers were donated in her memory by Shirley Poulakis and the rest of the flowers in memory of Ann Bliss, Alison’s mother.

The service is led by Deacon Chris Saccali, and flowers donated ‘in memory’ by the family of Shirley Poulakis.  We have a POS – you can make your donation to St. Paul’s by card. Please come to coffee and refreshments provided by Mary Taylor’s family in the garden after the Liturgy. Follow the service sheet online – wifi password gu5uX8mmtgb8egak

Opening Hymn:  368      (a hymn set to a Welsh tune called Cwm Rhondda)

Minister:  Grace, mercy and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with you

All:  and also with you.

Minister:  O Lord, open our lips

            All:            and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Minister: Give us the joy of your saving help

            All:            and sustain us with your life-giving Spirit.


The minister then welcomes people informally.

Prayer for Mary Taylor

Father in heaven, we praise your name for all who have finished this life loving and trusting you, for the example of their lives, the life of grace you gave them, and the peace in which they now rest. We praise you today for your servant Mary and for all that you did through her. Meet us in our sadness and fill our hearts with praise and thanksgiving, for the sake of our risen Lord, Jesus Christ.

All:  Amen

Prayers of Penitence

Minister:   The sacrifice of God is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite spirit God will not despise. Let us come to the Lord who is full of compassion, and acknowledge our transgressions in penitence and faith.


All: Lord God, we have sinned against you;

       we have done evil in your sight.

       We are sorry and repent.

       Have mercy on us according to your love.

       Wash away our wrongdoing and cleanse us from our sin.

       Renew a right spirit within us and restore us to the joy of your salvation;

       through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.


Minister:  May the Father of all mercies cleanse us from our sins, and restore us

in his image to the praise and glory of his name, through Jesus Christ

our Lord.

All:            Amen

Psalm       (Green Book )     539   This is the day of the Lord; we rejoice and are glad


First Reading:      1 Samuel 1, 2-end                                            (Lynn Stavrou)

20 In due time Hannah conceived and bore a son. She named him Samuel, for she said, “I have asked him of the Lord.” 21 The man Elkanah and all his household went up to offer to the Lord the yearly sacrifice and to pay his vow. 22 But Hannah did not go up, for she said to her husband, “As soon as the child is weaned, I will bring him, that he may appear in the presence of the Lord and remain there forever; I will offer him as a Nazirite for all time.” 23 Her husband Elkanah said to her, “Do what seems best to you; wait until you have weaned him; only, may the Lord establish your word.” So the woman remained and nursed her son until she weaned him. 24 When she had weaned him, she took him up with her, along with a three-year-old bull, an ephah of flour, and a skin of wine. She brought him to the house of the Lord at Shiloh, and the child was young. 25 Then they slaughtered the bull and brought the child to Eli. 26 And she said, “Oh, my lord! As you live, my lord, I am the woman who was standing here in your presence praying to the Lord. 27 For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me the petition that I made to him. 28 Therefore I have lent him to the Lord; as long as he lives, he is given to the Lord.” And they worshipped the Lord there.

Reader:    Hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches.

All:            Thanks be to God.


Minister:  This is love, not that we loved God

All:            but that he loved us and sent us his Son

Minister:  He is the sacrifice for our sins

All:            that we might live through him

Minister:  If God loves us so much

All:            we ought to love one another

Minister:  If we love one another

All:            God loves us

The Benedictus   Luke 1, 68-79     (Please stand to say the canticle together)


  1. Blessed be the Lord the God of Israel, who has come to his people and set them free.
  2. He has raised up for us a mighty Saviour, born of the house of his servant David.
  3. Through his holy prophets God promised of old to save us from our enemies, from the hands of all that hate us,
  4. To show mercy to our ancestors, and remember your holy covenant.
  5. This was the oath God swore to our father Abraham: to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
  6. Free to worship him without fear, holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life.
  7. And you, child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High, for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
  8. To give his people knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of all their sins.
  9. In the tender compassion of our God the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
  10. To shine on those who swell in darkness and the shadow of death, and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be; world without end.  Amen.


Hymn    185  (a hymn in praise of the Blessed Virgin Mary)

2nd Reading:    John 19, 25-27                                                     (Jane Mandalios)

Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” 27 Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home.

Reader:  Hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches
All:          Thanks be to God.         


Sermon   (Please be seated)  


The Apostle’s Creed  (remain  standing)

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried; he descended to the dead.  On the third day he rose again; he ascended into heaven, he is seated at the right hand of God the Father, and he will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.    Amen.


Intercessions:   Lord in your mercy,  Hear our prayer.          (Jean Mertzanakis)


Collect:   led by the Minister

God of compassion, whose Son Jesus Christ, the child of Mary, shared the life of a home in Nazareth, and on the cross drew the whole human family to himself: strengthen us in our daily living that in joy and sorrow we may know the power of your presence to bind together and to heal; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.

All:  Amen


All: 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.   Amen.


Commending Mary Taylor to God’s loving embrace:

Mary, go forth upon your journey from this world, in the name of God the Father almighty who created you; in the name of Jesus Christ who suffered death for you; in the name of the Holy Spirit who strengthens you; in communion with Mary, the Holy Mother of God, with St. Paul and all the blessed saints, and aided by angels and archangels, and all the armies of the heavenly host. May your portion this day be in peace, and your dwelling the heavenly Jerusalem.

All:   Amen

Blessing of the Flowers:

Heavenly Father, your Son Jesus admired the lilies of the field and taught us to imitate them by trusting in your love. Bless these flowers. Accept them as a sweet fragrance, and fill the hearts of those who receive them with your love. We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord.  All:   Amen


The Peace      (Please stand)           The Minister will introduce words for the Peace

Since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, who has given us access to his grace. The peace of the Lord be always with you.

(The Collection will be taken during this hymn, remember you can donate by card after the service)


Hymn:    408  Love divine                (1st tune – another  Welsh tune, called Blaenwern)


Notices:       see end pages for the notices


Minister:     Let us say the Grace together:   

The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with us all evermore.   Amen.


Hymn:       237  Morning has broken


Fr. Leonard’s usual Day Off – Monday and Tuesday

Home tel :  210 72 14 906;  email

Deacon Chris: 22950 53164: Day off – Friday

Swedish Church: contact Fr. Bjorn on 694 607 2428


The Anglican Church in Greece (including St. Paul’s) is self – financing, and receives no income other than from the generosity of those who worship here. We are a legal body and we pay tax. Our tax number is 997073090. If you wish to donate direct to our bank (IBAN) the account with Piraeus Bank is:  The Anglican Church in Greece, St. Paul’s Athens  GR 820172 0500 0050 5008 6327 479  Swift code is  PIRB GRAA


  • Confessions – if anyone would like to make a Sacramental Confession before or during Lent, please contact Fr. Leonard.
  • Annual Parochial Church Meeting: Sunday 26th March after the Liturgy. Please consider and pray about putting your name forward as a Churchwarden or Council Member. We are particularly keen to elect one Council member with a heart for the environment who could also be our ‘Local Environmental Officer’.
  • Electoral Roll Forms are available – if you are regularly at St. Paul’s please complete one of these and hand it in, preferably a couple of weeks before the Annual Meeting.
  • Monthly Giving envelopes – it is never too late to join this scheme. Just ask about it.
  • Coffee Mornings (now on Thursdays): April 6th, May 11th, June 8th, July 13th. These are in the Swedish Centre (Winter time) or Church Garden (Spring and Summer)
  • Quiz Nights – these are monthly. The next date is Friday March 24th
  • Grand Second Hand Book sale on April 22nd – 10.30-2.30pm in the church garden
  • We are glad to have welcomed you to St Paul’s today but remember you can keep in touch with us wherever you are you are in the world. See our e-mag on the website.



Programme of Liturgy for Holy Week and Easter 2023

Sunday 2nd April: 10.00am  Palm Sunday Blessing of the Palms and Procession and Holy Liturgy


Wednesday of Holy Week:  10.00  Holy Liturgy

Holy (Maundy) Thursday:    20.00  Holy Liturgy and procession to Altar

                                                   of Repose in the church garden

Holy (Good) Friday :              14.00 Liturgy with Veneration of the Cross

Holy Saturday:                        20.00 Ceremony of Readings and

                                                   Proclamation of the Resurrection

Sunday 9th April:

Easter Sunday                         10.00 Liturgy of the Resurrection


(NB Orthodox Pascha is Sunday 16th April)


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