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Scripture (from the Revised Common Lectionary, with links provided by TextWeek.com – a source for thoughtful worship and preaching throughout the year):
Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:
Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal
The Oremus Hymnal offers many good choices for the lectionary (although this 2010 version will have incorrect calendar dates). Not all are available in Chalice Hymnal, but some may be helpful in congregations where there is not a Chalice Hymnal available. Visit the Oremus Hymnal.
17 O worship the King
582 Come Down, O Love Divine
392 Draw us in the Spirit’s tether
More hymn suggestions, as well as helpful references for use of the arts in worship, are available from the United Church of Christ website.
Dealing with the Psalm of the Day:
Since Chalice Hymnal does not provide a complete Psalter, there will be occasions when suggestions may be made for alternate Psalm use (or hymn equivalent). A metrical version of the Psalter, for those Psalms not provided in Chalice Hymnal, is being prepared by Rev. David Chafin. Where practical, these may be offered here as well. You may also want to visit http://lectionarypsalms.org/
This week: See p. 744
Hymn of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2016, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
Watch site for posting at a later date.
On Revelation 21:1-6
Behold! New heavens embrace earth,
new earth prepares for life to dawn.
And in this passing of the Sea,
new vision captivates our sight.
Behold! The New Jerusalem
appears, comes down, dressed as a bride.
All is prepared, this gift of God,
and we are answering in joy.
Behold! God tabernacles here;
so closely wrought, God shares his own.
Become God’s people, knowing God,
our own by promise passing death.
Behold! All things are now made new.
These words triumphant are all true.
The thirsty drink with nary price,
life’s fountain pours for everyone.
LM Suggested tune: Ludborough
Note: Except where otherwise noted, items are created or adapted by the editor. If you are aware of source notations which are missing, please bring them to his attention. No copyright infringement is intended, but is sure to happen.
Words of Greeting/Call to Prayer
L: Jesus has passed through the door of death and opened the way to the blessing of life.
P: Still today, his presence can penetrate the barrier of our fears and give us peace.
L: Now we may proclaim the beauty of forgiveness and the strength that community supplies.
P: Christ is risen and he is here. Let us worship God, who blesses us with life.
Prayer of Approach
L: The Lord be with you.
P: And also with you.
L: Let us pray. Most precious God, as we continue to celebrate the resurrection of Christ, we pray that we may be bound together in Christian love and that our faith and fellowship may be a witness through which your spirit will bring others into your church. We humbly thank you for your many blessings you have given us. We ask that we may learn how to truly be Easter people and always remember that we are celebrating resurrection day every day, for we pray through Jesus our Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
Center us now, O God, on your presence in this place among your people, as we lift up our hearts desires, our soul’s deep needs, our hungers, fears and failures.
As we have often failed to be obedient to your will in our lives as individual disciples and as church, we pray that you will forgive us and enliven us to be and to do the gospel of Christ. Open us to your Spirit’s urgings, and awaken us to live faithfully as your people in a changing, often hurting world.
We pray for those around us who need your care, and ask that you would make of us your instruments of healing, peace and redemption. We pray especially for those we have named to you this day, and others we lift to you in the silence of our hearts.
Reveal your presence with them and with us, God of life, that as people of renewed faith and vitality, we may be empowered to serve your world, and so give glory to you; for we offer our prayers and our lives in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.
Prayers from Common Worship*
God our redeemer,
you have delivered us from the power of darkness
and brought us into the kingdom of your Son:
grant, that as by his death he has recalled us to life,
so by his continual presence in us he may raise us
to eternal joy;
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 for ever.
God our Father,
whose Son Jesus Christ gives the water of eternal life:
may we thirst for you,
the spring of life and source of goodness,
through him who is alive and reigns, now and for ever.
by the lakeside you renewed your call to your disciples:
help your Church to obey your command
and draw the nations to the fire of your love,
to the glory of God the Father.
Collect of the Day (from Book of Common Prayer, 1979**)
O God, you have prepared for those who love you such good
things as surpass our understanding: Pour into our hearts such
love towards you, that we, loving you in all things and above
all things, may obtain your promises, which exceed all that we
can desire; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Collect of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2016, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
Your peace comes, Lord our God,
comes richly upon us in mercy and love.
In joy we find your Spirit tantalizing
our anticipation of your breath for us
In joy we echo Jesus whom we love,
whom we adore in gratefulness, evermore.
Service of Table
Preparation (Invitation to Stewardship)
All good things come from God, the giver of life. We are called as stewards of God’s gifts to share in fulfillment of God’s purposes for creation. As stewards of the kingdom of God, let us give from our abundance with thanksgiving.
Receive the offerings we bring, O God, and sanctify them to the holy purpose of extending your gifts to all who are in need and to all who would desire them, even as you sanctify our lives in the presence of the Holy Christ who is in our midst today.
Invitation to Commune
There are, no doubt, people who wish there was more to our communion liturgy in Disciples tradition—more magic words, more bells and whistles, more special effects, to get us in the mood. But we don’t do that—we simply gather to eat and drink in memory and in love.
There is a story from the 3rd century that may help us here. St. Anthony was a leader among the desert monastics, and the story says that 3 religious men used to go to visit him each year. 2 would discuss their thoughts about the salvation of their souls with him, but the 3rd kept his mouth shut and never asked a question.
Abba Anthony said to him, You often come here to see me, but you never ask me anything; and the other man replied “It is enough for me to see you, Father.”
One of the great needs of our consumer-oriented society is a sense of enough. And our time around this table helps us with this. It is enough for us to be here, to know of the sacrifice that brought us here, and of the spiritual resources available to us here. We do not fancy up the service, because we do not need fancying up ourselves—we need simplifying. We need the bread of life and the cup of salvation. And here they are. It is enough.
Prayer of Thanksgiving
(The following may be offered as one prayer, or broken between two Elders, if that is the tradition to be followed)
We praise you, Lord, for sending your only Son Jesus to live among us, full of grace and truth. He made you known to all who receive him. Sharing our joy and sorrow, he healed the sick, befriended sinners, and showed us the way to fulfillment in partnership with other people. Two by two he sent his disciples to extend your promise of friendship and love, and two by two he calls us still to work in your spirit of love.
Even having taken up his cross and dying that we might live, he overcame death and is risen in power. He is still the friend of sinners. We trust him to overcome every power that can hurt or divide us.
Pour out your Spirit upon us, that this bread and cup may be for us the body and blood of Christ, and that we, and all who share this feast, may be one with Christ and he with us. Fill us with eternal life, that with joy we may be his faithful people until we feast with him in glory. Through him, with him, in him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor are yours, Almighty God, now and forever.
[if not previously offered: “And now with the confidence of your children, we offer the prayer our Savior taught us, ‘Our Father…’”]
Resources from the Jubilee Fund: This stewardship ministry serving the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) offers weekly emails for each Sunday’s service. Visit http://www.thejubileefund.com/ to learn more.
Rev. Tim Graves offers Liturgy Bits with valuable, culturally sensitive and creatively contemplative works, well worth your time.
You may also want to visit Worship Connection at MinistryMatters.com, which offers numerous helps, including electronic versions of print resources for worship and preaching planning.
Intercessions and other helpful planning materials geared to the Lectionary (using Roman Catholic version, but normally quite useful for all traditions) for preaching and worship are supplied for several weeks in advance at The Sunday Website of St. Louis University.
Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2015. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2015 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2015; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010. The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992. The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy. Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010. http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary
Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.
NOTE: We hope you return to this posting often (and are subscribed to the feed by email, on Facebook or your favorite reader), since the content of each week’s posting may change several times before Sunday. We’d also like to include your content, even after the fact, since everything will roll around again in 3 years, and your contributions may find new life in the great cycle of the lectionary. Send your comments or content here.