Pentecost +19, Proper 21B
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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
86- Great is thy faithfulness
91 or 92 All Hail the power of Jesus’ name
261-Sweet, sweet Spirit
621-Are ye able
406-Beneath the forms of outward rite
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 (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
On Numbers 11:4-6, 10-16, 24-29
When all the burden lingers long,
a weight upon the soul,
then, Lord, you call the seventy
and by your Spirit, lift.
When in the moment near despair
the load becomes too great,
then, in the mercy of your sight,
you bring relief and care.
As everything comes to declare
the share of your delight,
we find, O Lord, sufficient grace
to carry each and all.
Beyond the boundaries of grief,
the narrowness of fear,
we hear your Spirit, Lord, exult
and brandish grace all round.
CM Suggested tune: Nun Danket All’ (Grafenberg)
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 124 is not in the Chalice Hymnal. See Call to Worship
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
from Psalm 124
L: If it had not been the LORD who was on our side–let Israel now say–
P: If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, when our enemies attacked us, then the flood would have swept us away, the torrent would have gone over us; then over us would have gone the raging waters.
L: Blessed be the LORD, who has not given us as prey to their teeth. We have escaped like a bird from the snare of the fowlers; the snare is broken, and we have escaped.
P: Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.
L: God who comes to us in Word and Spirit, calls us to a table set for all who hunger.
P: We hunger for grace and forgiveness; we hunger for justice and peace.
L: God knows and meets our deepest hungers with bread which always satisfies.
P: Thanks be to God who blesses and feeds all human yearnings, and who does this through our feeble, simple human hands.
Invocation or Prayer of Approach
O God, our Creator and Sustainer: we come with thanksgiving for these moments when we can ease the pace of our lives and listen for your voice. Create a spirit within us that truly draws us toward you and toward our brother and sisters; a spirit deep, perceptive, gentle and bold. Clear our minds, open our hearts and touch us with your presence and your power. We offer this prayer in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
Your love and grace are all sufficient, O God, for all the world’s deep needs. Open our minds and hearts this day to receive with gratitude the gifts you have given – gratitude enough to be compelled to live as your witnesses, your instruments for grace and forgiveness, for justice and peace in our world. This we pray through our Lord Jesus Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)
Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions
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.
God of Sun and Moon, Star and Sky, your wonder is beyond our imagining. We thank you for the gift of this world we share, and for the common bonds that we share as your children.
Bless us God, as we seek to find a way toward the peace you invite us to share. Guide us God as we walk that delicate line between being faithful to our own relationship with you, and yet remain understanding of those whose path is vastly different from our own.
Remind us often that being faithful does not require that we close ourselves off from the faith of others. Open our hearts, minds and spirits to people of every faith and culture. May the Mystery of your ways be the bridge that draws all of your people together in prayer for peace in our time.
We pray for those who are in special need of your grace and healing today. For those who live in fear of violence; for refugees everywhere; for political prisoners and for those who imprison them; God, we ask for peace. For those who are grieving, or hungry, or in despair; for the lonely, and all who are ill or suffering, for any who struggle with addiction, and for all who live with chronic illness.
God, we trust in your power to be present with the suffering. We trust in your Spirit’s power to bring comfort, faith and strength where it is needed. We pray, bring your radical, scandalous peace into our midst, and touch us all with your love, for we ask it in the name of the One who calls us ever forward, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayers from Common Worship*
Almighty and everlasting God,
increase in us your gift of faith
that, forsaking what lies behind
and reaching out to that which is before,
we may run the way of your commandments
and win the crown of everlasting 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.
We praise and thank you, O Christ, for this sacred feast:
for here we receive you,
here the memory of your passion is renewed,
here our minds are filled with grace,
and here a pledge of future glory is given,
when we shall feast at that table where you reign
with all your saints for ever.
God, our judge and saviour,
teach us to be open to your truth
and to trust in your love,
that we may live each day
with confidence in the salvation which is given
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Collect of the Day (from Book of Common Prayer, 1979**)
O God, you declare your almighty power chiefly in showing
mercy and pity: Grant us the fullness of your grace, that we,
running to obtain your promises, may become partakers of
your heavenly treasure; 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 (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)
Within the name of Jesus, O God,
we seek to do your healing works
that we proclaim him well.
Provide in these too awkward hands
the seeds of hospitality and joy
that all reluctance may abate
and we enjoy your gracious feast.
Service of Table
While all of our congregations navigate the Sacred Board in a different way, it seems, there are common elements in most, which are provided here. We would love to hear if your congregation has variations to these elements which we might address in the future.
Offertory / Invitation to Give
The wonderful works of God surround us. How will we show our gratitude? The generosity of God exceeds all our limits. How will our manner of life reflect the abundance of God’s mercy? Surely our offerings are one measure of our response. Let us present them with joy and thanksgiving.
We thank you, God for this opportunity to express our love to you through the gifts we bring to support and encourage your work in near and distant places. Make our hearts glad that we can share in extending the gospel and helping to heal humanity’s pain, for we bring them to you with grateful hearts.
Receive our lives, O God, which we offer in token to you through the offering of these gifts. May we, and may they, be used for the purposes to which you have called them, and to which you call your whole church, in the works of love and healing and justice shown in Jesus Christ our Lord.
Invitation to the Table
All who hunger for God have been welcomed by Christ at a table spread with the fruits of mercy and peace. Here we find the Bread that satisfies; here we drink to never thirst again. As we prepare to receive the gifts of God, let us open our hearts to hear God’s promise of life eternal, open up our lives to give of ourselves as Christ has given sacrificially himself to us, and then come with grateful hearts to the Gospel Feast.
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)
- O God our Provider, we hunger for the bread which satisfies. All other sources have failed us, but you are ever faithful. As we bless your name and break this bread, may it be for us the body of Christ, that we might be his body in the world, confident of your gracious provision for living faithfully and serving freely all of your children.
- Send down your Holy Spirit, we pray, upon these gifts of bread and wine, mighty God. Be known in our midst as we receive from your hand, that as witnesses of your grace and mercy we might live graciously and mercifully as your children, in the spirit of Christ our Lord.
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 2017. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; 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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