Christ the King/Reign of Christ C
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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:
Thanksgiving Sunday is also recognized in some congregations. This is not at all inappropriate, considering the nature of the lectionary and a careful study of the nature of the holiday in American culture. However, it is important to be aware of the universality of the Church, and of this observance of Christ the King/Reign of Christ Sunday. It is not to be trivialized into a rehash of American triumphalism or a “divine rights” celebration. All are urged to let the texts speak for themselves, and to use care in pairing music and other elements of the day in concert with the themes of scripture. The texts above are certainly appropriate to the day, but also see:
Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal
Come, ye thankful people, come,
276-We gather together
234-Crown him with many crowns
429-You satisfy the hungry heart
717-Let all things now living
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.
More hymn suggestions, as well as helpful references for use of the arts in worship, are available from the United Church of Christ website.
Hymn of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2016, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
On Colossians 1:11-20
The way of Jesus is repair,
the constancy of hope.
So linger in this radiance
that fullness bring embrace.
Intent on thankful praise, arise:
give intimate desire.
For God has qualified this stand
in Jesus’ glorious bound.
With lively care, with opulence,
where heart exceeds design,
become the answering allure
as kingdom dawns for us.
The image of our God adorns
beginnings once and all,
as Jesus owns our livid joy
and echoes cross borne peace.
CM Suggested tune: Crimond
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: Psalm 46 is on p. 742
Concerning the Following Items: 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.
Let us proclaim a day of thanksgiving among ourselves, people of God – a day of gratitude for the one who has promised to gather the remnant of his flock from all the lands, and bring us back into the fold where fruitful life may be propagated. God has promised to raise up a shepherd for us, so that we might not fear or wander away – a shepherd who will deal with us and with all earth’s people carefully and justly. In Jesus Christ, we have a great Shepherd. Let us return with thanksgiving to the one who guards and guides our lives.
Call to Worship (from Psalm 100)
L: Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth.
P: Worship the LORD with gladness; come into his presence with singing.
L: Know that the LORD is God. It is he that made us, and we are his;
P: We are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
L: Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to God, bless his name.
P: For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.
OR from Psalm 93
L: The LORD is king, robed in majesty; the LORD is robed, girded with strength.
P: God has established the world; it shall never be moved.
L: More majestic than the thunders of mighty waters, more majestic than the waves of the sea, majestic on high is the LORD!
P: Your decrees are very sure; holiness befits your house, O LORD, forevermore.
Invocation or Prayer of Approach
O God, you call us into your holy place – this solemn assembly. Let our hearts be made full of praise, our eyes full of wonder at your mercies, and our lips quick to tell of your blessings to us in your son Jesus Christ our Sovereign Lord. Let our praise be for the guidance of your hand and the righteousness with which you execute justice, that we might be your presence to our broken and hurting world. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
Almighty and wonderful God. We enter your courts with thanksgiving and praise, knowing that you have made us, and remembering we are loved. We have come to praise your mighty acts, to offer our petitions, and celebrate remembrance. Let us know your guarding presence, as sheep with their shepherd, as we seek to honor you for all your good works; this we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
How vast and deep is your love O God, for us and for all the world. As we give you thanks for the beauty of creation and for the gift of life, we turn to you for strength and guidance to help those of our world in need of care and healing. May your Spirit bring your people to truly live faithfully as servants of Christ our Sovereign Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions
God of Creation, God of Wonder, hear this offering of prayer and praise as a gift from our thankful hearts. We thank you for the wonders all around us. For grains of sand, the smell of rain falling on dry ground, for the shifting of the seasons and the sound of laughter. We thank you God for one another – for the joys and struggles of relationships that nurture us and help us to grow. God, we thank you for your eternal presence in our midst and for the good news of your deep abiding love for all of creation. Even as we give thanks, we lift up the concerns that burden us this day. We ask your peace and blessing on all those we have named in this place today and all whose names and circumstances remain in the safe sanctuary of your Spirit’s care. We pray for all who are suffering in body, mind or spirit and for all who provide care for the needs of others. We pray for the lonely and the despairing…for those who struggle with addiction…for those who feel trapped in situations of abuse…for those who making difficult decisions in life… God we pray for your church and its mission in the world. Bless all of your children God, and pour your Spirit upon us, bringing healing, comfort and strength wherever it is needed. All this we ask in the name of the One who calls us forward in faith, Jesus Christ our Sovereign Lord (who taught us to pray, saying “Our Father…”)
Gracious God, who supplies us with every blessing in abundance, lift up our hearts in gratitude and thanksgiving. Open us to remember the gifts we seldom notice, the bounty we take for granted, the rich possibilities you provide. For bread without scarcity, for water that is pure, for houses to live in and friends to enjoy, we give you humble thanks.
We lift to you all those whose lives are linked with our own. We remember (_______and) all those whom we name to you in silence.
Touch their lives with your grace and your peace, that they would know your love in these days of illness and unknowing and struggle.
In the days ahead, may we be more aware of the bounty for which we need to be grateful and of all the little things that make us who we are which we often overlook or ignore. Help us to be more mindful every day of your goodness and love.
For beauty and bounty, for healing and hope, for the gospel of our salvation, we lift our voices in praise to you, Creator God, in Christ’s name.
Our tender and compassionate God asks us to pray for all people. Let us offer our prayers for the world in need, trusting in God’s great love.
Gracious God, we pray for the church around the world. As the broken bread, though once scattered as grain on the hillsides become one loaf, so may your church be one in spirit throughout the earth, and one in witness to your saving love;
Gracious God, lead our leaders throughout the Church. Grant them your wisdom, that by their deeds they may encourage the faithful and witness to the world and its people;
Eternal ruler of the universe, we pray for those who govern every land, and for the people committed to their charge. Look with grace upon the president of our country, and the legislators who guide our lives. Turn the hearts of leaders and peoples to you, that governments may seek the good of humanity and of all who suffer;
God, you suffer with those who suffer. We pray for those who are denied what they need to live and those whose dreams have been shattered by war and disaster. We pray especially for those who suffer in the season of plenty. Reach out and bring healing through the hands of your faithful people;
Holy Comforter, healing Spirit, grant your peace to those who are sick and those who grieve, and especially those of our own church families who are suffering today. Radiate through their lives with the light of your presence, that renewed healing and strength may be theirs.
We pray, dear Lord, for those whose actions offend us most and for those whom we have learned to fear and despise. Through your great love, make tender all hearts hardened by hatred, bigotry and suspicion; and work your justice among us.
God of hope and new life, help us to see the joy and abundant life you intend for us. Forgive our shortsightedness and often miserly attitudes toward the created world which you have entrusted to our care. Give us your peace–peace which is not so much an absence of trouble, as an awareness of your guiding presence and bounteous gifts in all that we do; for these our prayers we bring to you in the name of Jesus the Christ.
Prayers from Common Worship*
whose Son Jesus Christ ascended to the throne of heaven
that he might rule over all things as Lord and King:
keep the Church in the unity of the Spirit
and in the bond of peace,
and bring the whole created order to worship at his feet;
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
Stir up, O Lord,
the wills of your faithful people;
that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works,
may by you be plenteously rewarded;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
God the Father,
help us to hear the call of Christ the King
and to follow in his service,
whose kingdom has no end;
for he reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, one glory.
Collect of the Day (from Book of Common Prayer, 1979**)
Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all
things in your well beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of
lords: Mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth, divided
and enslaved by sin, may be freed and brought together
under his most gracious rule; who lives and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.
Collect of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2016, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
The way of your desires, Lord God,
surprises us in rigor
and in grace, in readiness
and in reserve.
Become in this confusion, Lord,
the way of prayer that offers all
in prime simplicity and awe.
Service of Table
Offertory / Invitation to Give
We are a blessed people. In this season of Thanksgiving, it is good that we recall God’s many gifts in our lives, and grace which God has given us to help us use them all for good. As we ready ourselves to join the great Feast of Thanksgiving, a feast which God has made for us in Christ Jesus, let us consider just how welcome we are to receive of it – all of us – and to share the gifts of it for the sake of the world. For the gifts of God are many, and they are made real in this meal, and in the family of God gathered around it. Let us bring forth our tithes and offerings.
We would crown you as our Sovereign, O Christ, as you have crowned the year with mercy and kindness in the giving of yourself for the sake of the world. May our lives, expressed in these offerings, and may the ministries of your beloved church, truly proclaim what our hearts have believed: that you are our Lord who will reign forever and ever. Amen.
Invitation to the Table from Phil. 2
L: We gather at the Table of Christ to join our hearts and minds in praise of God.
P: God has exalted Jesus and given him a name above every name.
L: So let every knee bend, in heaven and on earth, and every tongue confess:
P: Jesus Christ is Lord. Glory to God forever!
Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)
(The following may be offered as one prayer, or broken between two Elders, if that is the tradition to be followed)
- It is always right and just to praise you, God our Father, for you have always sought and found us. As we give you praise for Jesus Christ, the shepherd and guardian of our souls, we offer thanks for this bread, which is to be for us his body. May we who receive him from your hands be encouraged to lives of thankful praise, and be empowered by your Spirit to offer him to the world which you have redeemed through your own great love.
- This cup, O God, we offer to your service. Send down your Holy Spirit, we pray, that as we receive your gifts – bread broken and wine poured – our lives might be made whole, and be offered to you anew for faithful service. This we pray in the name of Christ our Lord and King.
Conclusion: Through him, with him, and in him, in the power of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor be to you, O God, now and forever. Amen.
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.
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