Lent 1 Blog

Zoom Service for the First Sunday in Lent – 21st March 2021

St Paul’s Athens


We have permission from our bishop to follow the Greek calendar date for Easter (this year only) so today is Lent 1. Καλή Σαρακοστή. After the worship we can have a short chat together.


The Sunday worship login remains the same until the end of April. Always double check for information on our website. This year we are aligned to the Greek Orthodox date for Easter.


Fr. Leonard will lead the worship today and Deacon Christine is the preacher. Christina Antoniadou is playing the keyboard. Please see ‘Chat’ on the day, to see the pieces Christina is playing. Clary Read will sing the John Rutter version of the blessing at the close of our worship. The Annual Meeting will take place online at 13.00. ALL papers for the meeting are on the website.


Priest:     Blessed be the Kingdom of God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

All:          Now and for ever.

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

All:           and also with you.


1 Now is the healing time decreed           (tune Gonfalon Royal)
For sins of heart and word and deed,
When we in humble fear record
The wrong that we have done the Lord


2 Who, always merciful and good,
Has borne so long our wayward mood,
Nor cut us off unsparingly
In our so great iniquity.


3 Therefore with fasting and with prayer,
Our secret sorrow we declare,
With all good striving seek his face,
And lowly-hearted plead for grace.


4 Cleanse us, O Lord, from every stain,
Help us the gifts of grace to gain,
Till with the angels, linked in love,
Joyful we tread thy courts above.


5 We pray thee, holy Trinity,
One God, unchanging Unity,
That we from this our abstinence
May reap the fruits of penitence. Amen.

Deacon:      Compassion and forgiveness belong to the Lord our God, though we have rebelled against him. Let us then renounce our wilfulness and ask his mercy by confessing our sins in penitence and faith.

There follows a short period of silence and stillness

 Deacon:     Wash me thoroughly from my wickedness and cleanse me from my sin

Kyrie eleison

     All:              Kyrie eleison

     Deacon:     Make me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me

                         Christe eleison

     All:              Christe eleison

Deacon:     Cast me not away from your presence and take not your Holy Spirit from me

                         Kyrie eleison

    All:               Kyrie eleison


Priest:   May the God of love and power forgive you and free you from your sins, heal and strengthen you by his Spirit, and raise you to new life in Christ our Lord.   Amen.


Traditionally in Lent we do not sing or say the Gloria


Collect:  Let us pray     (Collect of the Day) 

Almighty God, whose Son Jesus Christ fasted forty days in the wilderness, and was tempted as we are but without sin; give us grace to discipline ourselves in obedience to your Spirit; and as you know our weakness, so may we know your power to save; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen


First Reading                                                                                                                     Genesis 9, 8-17

Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, “As for me, I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you, and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the domestic animals, and every animal of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark. I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.”

This is the word of the Lord

All: Thanks be to God.


1 Forty days and forty nights
You were fasting in the wild;
Forty days and forty nights
Tempted, and yet undefiled.


2 Shall not we Your sorrow share
And from worldly joys abstain,
Fasting with unceasing prayer,
Strong with You to suffer pain?


3 Then, if Satan on us press,
Flesh or spirit to assail,
Victor in the wilderness,
Grant we may not faint nor fail!


4 So shall we have peace divine;
Holier gladness ours shall be.
‘Round us, too, shall angels shine,
Such as served You faithfully.


5 Keep, O keep us, Savior dear,
Ever constant by Your side,
That with You we may appear
At the eternal Eastertide.


Gospel Reading          

Nelly:            Praise to you, O Christ, King of eternal glory. Blessed are those who have endured temptation:

they have stood the test and will receive the crown of life.

All:                 Praise to you, O Christ, King of eternal glory.

Nelly:            The Lord be with you

All:                 and also with you

Nelly:            Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to St. Mark                       (Mark 1, 9-15)

All:                Glory to you, O Lord

In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.” And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness. He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him. Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.”

Nelly:            This is the gospel of Christ

All:                Praise to you, O Christ.


Sermon        Deacon Christine



Priest:     Do you believe and trust in God the Father, source of all being and life, the one for whom we


All:           We believe and trust in him.

Priest:      Do you believe and trust in God the Son, who took our human nature, died for us and rose again?

All:           We believe and trust in him.

Priest:      Do you believe and trust in God the Holy Spirit, who gives life to the people of God, and makes

Christ known in the world?

All:           We believe and trust in him.

Priest:      This is the faith of the Church.

All:           This is our faith. We believe and trust in one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Amen.


Intercessions:  (kneel or sit) Lord in your mercy; hear our prayer                (Nelly Paraskevopoulou)


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.

All:        And also with you.

You might like to scroll along the gallery of the participants to see who you are sharing the peace with – remember to put your Sunday collection aside or send it by bank transfer. Also – as a special Easter donation you can ‘fill the basket with eggs’ (See website) and you can make a donation for an Easter lily in memory of a loved one (see website)


1  O come, thou Traveller unknown,        (tune Melita)   based on Jacob’s wrestling with God (Gen 32, 24-30)
whom still I hold, but cannot see!
My company before is gone,
and I am left alone with thee.
With thee all night I mean to stay
and wrestle till the break of day.


2 Wilt thou not yet to me reveal
thy new, unutterable name?
Tell me, I still beseech thee, tell,
to know it now resolved I am.
Wrestling, I will not let thee go
till I thy name, thy nature know.


3 My strength is gone, my nature dies,
I sink beneath thy weighty hand,
faint to revive, and fall to rise.
I fall, and yet by faith I stand;
I stand and will not let thee go
till I thy name, thy nature know.


4 Yield to me now—for I am weak,
but confident in self-despair!
Speak to my heart, in blessing speak,
be conquered by my instant prayer.
Speak, or thou never hence shalt move,
and tell me if thy name is Love.


5 ‘Tis Love! ‘tis Love that wrestled me!
I hear thy whisper in my heart.
The morning breaks, the shadows flee,
pure, universal Love thou art.
To me, to all, thy mercies move—
thy nature and thy name is Love.


The Lord’s Prayer:  (to be prayed in whichever language you chose)

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.

 All: Heavenly Father, your Son battled with the powers of darkness and grew closer to you in the desert; help us to use these days to grow in wisdom and prayer that we may witness to your saving love in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


1 O Jesus, I have promised
To serve thee to the end;
Be thou forever near me,
My Master and my friend;
I shall not fear the battle
If thou art by my side,
Nor wander from the pathway
If thou wilt be my guide. 


2 O let me feel thee near me!
The world is ever near:
I see the sights that dazzle,
The tempting sounds I hear.
My foes are ever near me,
Around me and within;
But, Jesus, draw thou nearer,
And shield my soul from sin. 



3 O let me hear thee speaking
In accents clear and still,
Above the storms of passion,
The murmurs of self-will.
O speak to reassure me,
To hasten or control;
O speak, and make me listen,
Thou guardian of my soul.


4 O Jesus, thou hast promised
To all who follow thee
That where thou art in glory
There shall thy servant be.
And, Jesus, I have promised
To serve thee to the end;
O give me grace to follow,
My Master and my friend. 


‘The Lord bless you and keep you’   Music by John Rutter, sung by Clary Read.


Deacon:     Go in peace to love and serve the Lord.

All:              In the name of Christ. Amen.    



Next Sunday Zoom is the same login address, and right until the last Sunday of April. The order of service is also on the website each week.

  • The church is still closed. Look out for new regulation.


  • Saturday Weekly Meditations – 09.00 on Deacon Chris’s Facebook.


  • Easter Eggs in a basket – a lovely project that allows you to make a special Easter donation to St. Paul’s Church. Please see the website for all the details.


  • Lent Bible Studies: looking at the Letter to the Galatians. Fridays – March 26th, April 2nd,  April 9th, 16th, 24th.  All at 19.00hrs. See Zoom link or contact Fr. Leonard.


  • Lent Night Prayer: Wednesdays at 21.00. March 24th, 31st; April 7th, 14th, 21stOrder of Service and Login details will be put on the website nearer the time.


  • Easter Cards – Anne Dedes has a supply of her beautiful Easter cards for sale. She will display some each week on the screen. Order direct through Anne please. You can also order through our Online Bazaar and collect from the Church or from Anne.
  • Celebrating Easter in a time of COVID
  • Easter 2021 will be the second Easter in this long period of the COVID pandemic. The Greek Government approaches COVID restrictions and the Church in its own distinct national way. Due to these two factors St. Paul’s Athens will align itself this year with the Greek date for Easter. This is for 2021 only and it is hoped that by celebrating Pascha almost a month later than the western date there will be more favourable conditions for worship in St. Paul’s. We sought permission for this, and the Church Council was unanimous in its vote to make this change. St. Thomas’s Crete, and Holy Trinity Corfu will also follow this practice. Key dates:                     Palm Sunday       April 25th                    Holy Thursday    April 29th

                        Good Friday        April 30th

                        Easter Sunday    May 2nd

                        Ascension Day   June 10th

                        Pentecost           June 20th


    Times of the Liturgy and Zoom services for Greet Week and Easter will be announced and publicized via the Website.


    Fr. Leonard’s usual Day Off – Monday  (in emergencies contact Deacon Christine)

    Home tel :  210 72 14 906;  email anglican@otenet.gr

    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





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