The Liturgy of Ascension Day

While the recording plays, the liturgy below enables participation in the congregational responses in bold.

¶    The Gathering 

God has gone up with a shout,
All   the Lord with the sound of a trumpet.
Psalm 47.5

The Greeting

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

All   and also with you.


The president introduces the service

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, for forty days we have been celebrating with joyful hearts the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, his bursting from the tomb and his defeat of the power of sin and death. He appeared to his disciples many times and told them about the kingdom of God.

Today we recall how he left this earth and returned to his Father, ascending into heaven to take his throne over all dominions and powers. Trusting in his reign over all creation, and submitting to his kingly yet loving rule, let us hear the story of his parting.

The Ascension Reading

A reading from the Acts of the Apostles (1.1-11)

In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach 2 until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. 3 After his suffering, he showed himself to these men and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. 4 On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. 5 For John baptised with water, but in a few days you will be baptised with the Holy Spirit.”
6 So when they met together, they asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7 He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9 After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.
10 They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. 11 “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”

At the end the reader says

Alleluia. Christ is risen.

All   He is risen indeed. Alleluia.

A minister says

Seeing we have a great high priest who has passed through the heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us offer him the praise worthy of his name.

Gloria in Excelsis

All   Glory to God in the highest,
and peace to his people on earth.

Lord God, heavenly King,
almighty God and Father,
we worship you, we give you thanks,
we praise you for your glory.

Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father,
Lord God, Lamb of God,
you take away the sin of the world:
have mercy on us;
you are seated at the right hand of the Father:
receive our prayer.

For you alone are the Holy One,
you alone are the Lord,
you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ,
with the Holy Spirit,
in the glory of God the Father.

The Collect

The president introduces a period of silent prayer with the words

Let us pray that our risen and ascended Lord will lead us to eternal life.

Silence is kept.

Risen Christ,
you have raised our human nature to the throne of heaven:
help us to seek and serve you,
that we may join you at the Father’s side,
where you reign with the Spirit in glory,
now and for ever.

All   Amen.

¶    The Liturgy of the Word 


Ephesians 1.15-23

15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, 20 which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fulness of him who fills everything in every way.

At the end the reader may say

This is the word of the Lord.

All   Thanks be to God.

Gospel Reading

This acclamation may herald the Gospel reading

Alleluia, alleluia.
Go and make disciples of all nations, says the Lord.
Remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.
cf Matthew 28.19,20

All   Alleluia.

When the Gospel is announced the reader says

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.

All   Glory to you, O Lord.

Luke 24.44-end

44 He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”
45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. 46 He told them, “This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 47 and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”
50 When he had led them out to the vicinity of Bethany, he lifted up his hands and blessed them. 51 While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up into heaven. 52 Then they worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. 53 And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God.

At the end

This is the Gospel of the Lord.

All   Praise to you, O Christ.

Sermon – the Reverend Ian Davies

The Creed

All   We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is,
seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father;
through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven,
was incarnate from the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary
and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son is worshipped and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come.

Prayers of Intercession

Almighty God, our heavenly Father,
you have exalted your Son Christ Jesus to your right hand,
and made him the head over all things for his body the Church:
hear us as we pray for the Church throughout the world …
Make us and all your people receptive to the gifts he pours upon us,
that we may use them to your glory,
and the building up of the body of Christ.

Lord, in your mercy:

All   hear our prayer.

Lord God Almighty, the Ancient of Days,
you have given your Son all authority in heaven and on earth:
hear us as we pray for the world he came to redeem …
Grant that we may know even in this time the things that make for peace,
and may strive for the reconciliation of all people
in his kingdom of justice and love.

Lord, in your mercy:

All   hear our prayer.

Father of all, whose Son has promised to be with us always,
to the end of the age:
hear us as we pray for those among whom we live and work …
Grant that we may be so aware of his presence with us,
that people may take note of us, that we have been with Jesus.

Lord, in your mercy:

All   hear our prayer.

O God our Redeemer, whose Son ever lives to make intercession for us:
hear us as we pray for those in any kind of need …
May he who has borne our infirmities strengthen and heal them,
that they may find grace to help in time of need,
and rejoice in his salvation.

Lord, in your mercy:

All   hear our prayer.

Heavenly Father,
whose Son has borne our humanity into the heavenly realms,
and gone before us to prepare a place for us:
hear us as we remember before you those whose earthly sojourn is over,
and whose life is now hidden in him with you …
Make us joyful and expectant, that at his coming with all his own
we too may go forth to meet him, and share in his eternal joy.

Merciful Father,

All   accept these prayers
for the sake of your Son,
our Saviour Jesus Christ.

The Lord’s Prayer

Looking for the coming of his kingdom,
as our Saviour taught us, so we pray

All   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.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and for ever.

¶    The Dismissal 


A reading from the Acts of the Apostles (1.12,13a,14)

Then the disciples returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day’s journey away. When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying. They were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers.

No responses are used at the end of the reading.

Silence is kept.


As we wait in silence,

All   make us ready for your coming Spirit.

As we listen to your word,

All   make us ready for your coming Spirit.

As we worship you in majesty,

All   make us ready for your coming Spirit.

As we long for your refreshing,

All   make us ready for your coming Spirit.

As we long for your renewing,

All   make us ready for your coming Spirit.

As we long for your equipping,

All   make us ready for your coming Spirit.

As we long for your empowering,

All   make us ready for your coming Spirit.

Silence may be kept.

The Blessing

May the Spirit,
who set the Church on fire upon the day of Pentecost,
bring the world alive with the love of the risen Christ.
And the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be among you and remain with you always.

All   Amen.

The Dismissal

Waiting expectantly for the promised Holy Spirit,
go in the peace of Christ. Alleluia, alleluia.

All   Thanks be to God. Alleluia, alleluia.