Pentecost +20, Proper 24A
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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 for each individual pericope:
Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal
66 – Immortal, invisible God only wise
382- We give thee but thine own
609- Take my life
614-I’m gonna live so God can use me
612-O Jesus, I have promised
409-I hunger and I thirst
395-Seed, scattered and sown
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 (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
On Isaiah 45:1-7
Come! I go before you ever,
leading victory in place.
By the way of God before you,
all is opened, all prepared.
For in this precise convention,
by the urgency of God,
ways of victory are opened
by the choice of God unknown.
All is readied at God’s calling,
this, the God who’s chosen you,
you who known not God completely
are the chosen to provide.
Surely in this bold appearance
comes the surety of grace
that upon the sweep of armies
all must follow God’s swift pace.
God has chosen; God announces
that this servant will proceed.
All is done at God’s condition,
that the east and west may know.
Now is in announcement curried
all the word of weal and woe,
all the light and all the darkness,
at the hand of God Most Hight.
188.8.131.52.D Suggested tune: Abbot’s Leigh
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 99 is on page 751.
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.
Call to Worship
L: All good gifts come from God, and we delight in them.
P: God’s gifts are ours to use – to steward faithfully as stewards of the mysteries of faith.
L: Let us bring forth all that we are to offer to our Creator!
P: We come with joy to offer our lives anew!
Invocation or Prayer of Approach
With thankful hearts for the bounties of our lives we come, O God, to offer our prayers and praise. As we gather this week keep us mindful of all the blessings in our lives and those we share our lives with. Be with us in worship as we lift our voices in praise of you, through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
Almighty God, you have made a way in the world for each of us to follow – a way that leads to abundant life in your Spirit. Cleanse our hearts this day, and open our spirits to that new reality made known in Jesus Christ, that as our praise rises to you and our minds are awakened to your gospel call, we may be made ready to walk in your paths in fresh ways as your beloved children. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”).
Eternal God, we long for truths that are lasting, yet we want our faith to be alive to the people and problems of today. As we move forward in an ever changing world, may faith in Christ be our anchor, and your love be our guide through the presence and power of the Spirit. Unite our hearts, even as we unite our voices in your praise, through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions
Almighty God, maker of all, with joy we give thanks for all your goodness. We praise you for the love which has created and sustained us to this day, and for the gift of your Christ who brings us into covenant with you and with all your people of faith. Help us to treasure your gifts and to show our thankfulness by lives wholly given to your service.
We pray for your church whom you have redeemed by the sacrifice of Jesus. Give it pastors and ministers filled with your spirit, and strength to serve by the guidance of your word. Perfect it in love and in compassion, and establish it in the faith of your saints. Unite all your people that one holy church may bear witness to you and your glory.
We pray that you would move our nation toward the justice of your peace. Bless our national, state and local leaders to serve all people with integrity. Purge from us all hatred and prejudice, and build within us your love, that even in our dealings with the other nations of earth we may be servants of peace, truth and justice.
Bless our homes with the joy of your presence. Strengthen our covenants of family and of faith, that our children may grow into fullness of faith, that together we may show forth your praise in our world through deeds and words of love and compassion—especially with those who are alone and lonely.
Let your grace be seen in seed-time and harvest, in labor and business, in leisure and rest, in arts and culture of our people. May all who do work find fulfillment of their vocations, and all who are in need of work find the relief of new endeavors.
Hear our prayers, O God, for those whom we name before you (_____), and for others whom we love, whose needs we lift to you in silence along with our own (silent prayer).
Comfort those who sorrow and are in need, sickness or adversity. Have mercy on those to whom death draws near. Bring consolation to those in mourning, and to all give your peace, for these and all our prayers we bring to you in the name of Jesus our Christ. Amen.
Lord God, we give you thanks for all your gifts to us—for daily food, for health, for each breath we take, for freedom to choose, and for the gifts of your word, your power and your love. Our hearts are truly overwhelmed, O God, when we consider how you have entrusted so much to us. May we be worthy of that trust—may we be a people who are unafraid to live as fully and as richly as you want us to live.
Help us, O God, as followers of Jesus, to multiply all that you have given us, to risk spreading your word and perhaps see it misunderstood, to gamble by loving those whom others think worthy only of hate, to take chances by doing good to those who have not done good to us. Help us be faith filled and desire to increase your glory and your goodness in this world. Make us people who share in both word and deed that which you have given to us.
We pray for the church gathered today, both here and around the world, that it may encourage all of its members to discover, develop and use all their gifts, those of nature and those of grace.
We pray for those who are poor in body or in spirit, for those oppressed and heavy laden, for those sick or in despair. Minister by your Spirit and by us, to all those for whom we have prayed, and help us walk faithfully in the path of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In these quieter times, God of peace, as in the busyness of our hectic days, you hear the true prayers of not just what we say, but also what we do and who we are. Hear us as we join our hearts in unity to pray for your church. May we be united in your truth, committed in your love, and sanctified by your grace, that with one heart and one voice we might proclaim your gospel in word and deed, praising you for your abiding presence in our midst as a community of faith.
We pray for our fellow creatures, this world which you lovingly made, and the people of earth with all their diversity and commonality. We lift to you those in our world who weep, and those who cause their weeping; those without food, clothing, shelter or a means of sustaining life with the dignity of one whom you have created. We pray for those who distort the good news of the gospel, who make gods out of things, out of themselves, out of their systems, institutions or structures…and who find it all so hollow and empty.
We pray for those who live without meaning and hope, who live as objects of the whims of others, and those who live in broken families, broken communities, and a broken world. Lead your church, we pray, toward a new vision of our mission to them in Christ—the vision of shalom—both those who are afar off in other lands, but also here, where each of us may encounter them personally.
Tender and compassionate friend, give us the assurance that you are here among your people, and the gifts of quiet and rest in this celebration of your word and table. Enable us with your guidance to be your church and to do your will in our common life together. Pour out your Spirit on those who are suffering, especially as we lift to you our own needs and the needs of those whose lives are closely linked with our own:__________, and those we name in the silence of our hearts.
Bless us to follow in the paths of those saints who have gone before us in faith, whose steps were taken in the sure and certain comfort of your presence, that we may faithfully glorify you now, in your church and your world, forever. For these prayers we offer in the name and spirit of Jesus, your Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Prayers from Common Worship*
Collect O God, forasmuch as without you we are not able to please you; mercifully grant that your Holy Spirit may in all things direct and rule our hearts; 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.
Post Communion Holy and blessed God, you have fed us with the body and blood of your Son and filled us with your Holy Spirit: may we honour you, not only with our lips but in lives dedicated to the service of Jesus Christ our Lord. Additional Collect Faithful Lord, whose steadfast love never ceases and whose mercies never come to an end: grant us the grace to trust you and to receive the gifts of your love, new every morning, in Jesus Christ our Lord.
Collect of the Day (from Book of Common Prayer, 1979**)
Almighty and everlasting God, in Christ you have revealed
your glory among the nations: Preserve the works of your
mercy, that your Church throughout the world may
persevere with steadfast faith in the confession of your
Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Collect of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
Stamped in your image and likeness, Lord God,
we come in offering
to yield unto you hand and heart,
your image in our lives.
Begin in us the readiness to free
our bondage to the image of the Cesar
claiming our acknowledgment.
For in your gift we are best given
in the love of Jesus.
Service of Table
Offertory / Invitation to Give
God has shown us the meaning of generosity in the beautiful diversity of creation, in the overflowing love of Jesus Christ, and in the never-ending gift of the Holy Spirit. God has blessed us abundantly and called us to be a community that blesses others through the sharing of our love, our talents and our material possessions. Let us rejoice now in what we have been given and in what is ours to give as we receive our morning offering.
God is at work in the world, renewing, remaking, resurrecting, bringing hope through the faith, the gifts, and the work of the church. We trust in God, and together we work for peace and justice through God’s Spirit as we offer our tithes and gifts. As we prepare the Table of the Lord to celebrate the great feast of Christ’s love, let us rejoice in our God-given opportunity to share in his work as we bring forth the fruits of our lives and our labors.
O God, through the offering of these gifts, we become a more open people—open-minded in hearing your word and wisdom, open-hearted in healing a broken world, open-handed in heeding your call to charity and enacted love. With thanks for all good gifts, we present a portion of our substance and the whole of ourselves.
Thank you, God, for the generosity that enables us to share. We are rich in many things. Help us to empty ourselves of pretense, even as we pour out gifts of gratitude. We dedicate our offerings and ourselves to shaping the community you intend, in the spirit of Christ.
Gracious and loving God, if we have gifts to bring, it is of your free mercy; for all things are yours, and what we have comes from you. Accept the offerings we make, and grant that gifts which can never be worthy may yet be hallowed by your blessing and used in your service; through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Prayers from the Book of Common Order, Church of Scotland, on oremus.org)
Invitation to the Table
Christ’s table is spread for all of us—a place of gathering, of fellowship and of praise. Let us rejoice as we respond to God’s gracious invitation to receive these gifts of Christ’s body and blood that we may be strengthened to live as faithful disciples.
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)
- We praise you, O God, for the gift of your Son Jesus Christ, who comes to us as living Bread. As we give you thanks for this loaf, we pray that we may receive the new life hidden within it, and know the power of your saving grace which sets us free to serve your world.
- With each new day, O God, your Spirit comes to refresh us, but all the more in the gift of this cup, Christ’s blood poured out for us. As we receive your gift of life anew in these gifts of bread and wine, may we be made ready and able to serve your world as your covenant people in the power of the resurrected Christ.
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 2016. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2016; 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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