Proper 11B, Pentecost +8

July 18

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Scripture  (from the Revised Common Lectionary, with links provided by – a source for thoughtful worship and preaching throughout the year):

2 Samuel 7:1-14a or Jeremiah 23:1-6
Psalm 89:20-37 or Psalm 23
Ephesians 2:11-22
Mark 6:30-34, 53-56

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

86-Great is thy faithfulness

275-Christ is made the sure foundation

100-When morning gilds the skies

23-Praise my soul the God of heaven

56-For the beauty of the earth

517-Love divine, all loves excelling

543-Blessed assurance

265-Spirit of God, descend upon my heart

538-Hope of the world

73-There’s a wideness

482-O Christians, haste

386-We come as guests invited

399-O God unseen yet ever near

393-One bread, one body

385-An upper room did our Lord prepare

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 (© 2021, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Mark 6:30-34, 53-56

     Look, there is Jesus, coming to behold;

     come to attend his presence, find his gracious hand.

     Running along the sea shore, follow as he sails

     for the hour of finding is at his fair side.

     There he will teach us, there attend our hope,

     for we come as sheep to find our shepherd’s hand.

     Come, find where Jesus steps ashore for us.

     Gather to discover how he heals the more.

     Hurry now to find him, greet his coming hand;

     hurry more to bring near those in want and fear.

     Jesus provides us vision of release

     that in freedom we may evermore rejoice.      Suggested tune: Maccabaeus

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   

This week:  Psalm 23 is on p. 734  

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: Christ our Lord united his followers together in Christian love.

P: His presence makes our fellowship a happy experience.

L: When Christ is our life, our fellowship takes on the nature of Christ, we experience unity, love and humility toward one another.

P: May Christ live in us, that we may be like him.


L: Above the noise of the world, a quiet voice is calling.

P: The rush of the days, the busyness of life, can drain us and leave us empty.

L: But we hear the call of Jesus to come away with him and rest.

P: May we hear his gracious invitation, and center our lives in the refreshing presence of God.


L: Be still and know that God is.

P: God was, also, in the beginning.

L: And when all human striving has ceased, God will still be.

P: From everlasting to everlasting, God is God, and alone is worthy to be worshiped.

OR from

L: In the midst of strife, God is with us!

P: Come, O Lord, and pour your word into our hearts.

L: In the anguish and grief of everyday living, God is with us!

P: Hear our cries, O Lord, and quiet our spirits!

L: Come, let us open our hearts and spirits to the Lord.

P: We come, with confidence and hope in the presence of God.

OR from

L: The Lord knows each and every one of us and loves each one dearly.

P: Sometimes it feels as though God has drifted away from us.

L: Be strong! Look for the ways in which God is present to you.

P: Given all the troubles of the day, we often look more closely at them.

L: Come, open your hearts and spirits to God’s love and presence

P: Lord, help us to see your presence in all of life’s circumstances.

OR  adapted from

L: We look at this world, focusing on the pain and confusion, the fears and hatred which seem to abound.

P: For what can we hope?

L: We wait breathlessly for the goodness of creation to be made manifest in all the world, for this is the promise of God.

P: God is always with us, guiding, rescuing, healing, restoring us.

L: Get ready, dear friends, the promises of God are true.

P: May God quiet our spirits and open our hearts, bringing us hope and peace.

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Still our spirits, O God, as we gather in this sacred space to join in worship. May the quietness of your presence bring us back to the center of life, so that we may be ready to receive your mission, and be refreshed by your Spirit to carry it out.  This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)


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…”)


We who have come to know your love, O Lord, are here to worship you. We ask your blessing upon us in this offering of our praise, and we ask your presence in every act of our lives, that we…your Church…may be confirmed in our faith, and give glory to your son Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray (as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)


Almighty God, you built your church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ himself as the cornerstone.  Join us together by their teaching, so that we may be a holy temple in whom your Spirit dwells; though the same Jesus Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

OR from

God of surprises, we come here from the weariness of the week, from various triumphs, from fears and doubts. Open our hearts to receive your surprising message of hope for all people, for we ask this in Jesus’ name (praying as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Loving and Holy Spirit of God, we pray:

  • that we and all people may increasingly work together to establish on earth the rule of the kingdom of heaven;
  • that the resources of the world may be gathered, distributed, and used with unselfish motives and scientific skill for the greatest benefit of all;
  • that beauty may be given to our towns and cities, and left untarnished in the countryside;
  • that children may grow up strong in body, sound in mind, and trained in spirit;
  • that there may be open ways, and peace, and freedom, from end to end of the earth;
  • and that people everywhere may learn to live in love through keeping the company of Jesus Christ our Lord, in whose great name we pray.

(Prayers from the Book of Common Order, Church of Scotland, on


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.

OR from

Summer is just about halfway over. Some of us have been able to travel, to spend special time with family and friends; but for others there is a sameness about this season. It brings pressures to work to provide for our families; it reminds us of the many people who are ill and who are unable to enjoy some of the special delights that this season is supposed to bring. This morning we take a few minutes to name our dear ones and situations of pain and loss as we ask for prayers from this congregation. Some people will remain unnamed because of the anguish we feel about their difficulties. But you are with them, every step of the way, even when they don’t feel like you care. You are there with them, offering them peace and hope. Let us turn our hearts to you as we silently offer these special people to your care. [Silent Prayer]. Lord, you have heard the cries of our hearts. You see our tears and feel our pain. Be with us all. Give us healing for our broken spirits and bodies, for we ask these things in the name of Jesus, the Master Healer.

Prayers from Common Worship*


Almighty Lord and everlasting God,

we beseech you to direct, sanctify and govern

both our hearts and bodies

in the ways of your laws

and the works of your commandments;

that through your most mighty protection, both here and ever,

we may be preserved in body and soul;

through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

Post Communion

Strengthen for service, Lord,

the hands that have taken holy things;

may the ears which have heard your word

be deaf to clamour and dispute;

may the tongues which have sung your praise be free from deceit;

may the eyes which have seen the tokens of your love

shine with the light of hope;

and may the bodies which have been fed with your body

be refreshed with the fullness of your life;

glory to you for ever.

Additional Collect

Lord God,

your Son left the riches of heaven

and became poor for our sake:

when we prosper save us from pride,

when we are needy save us from despair,

that we may trust in you alone;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Collect of the Day (from Book of Common Prayer, 1979**)

Almighty God, the fountain of all wisdom, you know our

necessities before we ask and our ignorance in asking: Have

compassion on our weakness, and mercifully give us those

things which for our unworthiness we dare not, and for our

blindness we cannot ask; through the worthiness of your Son

Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the

Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2021, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Mark 6:30-34, 53-56

            Crowds clamor after you in need, O Lord,

                        in longing for your gracious touch.

                        Find us as sheep without a shepherd,

                                    as strangers in a wanting land.

                                    Yes, Lord, so greet us that we find

                                                life bountiful and free

                                                            in your enticing care.

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

Jesus said, “Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For the measure you give will be the measure you get back.”  Let us prepare the Table of the Lord with the fruits of our lives and our labors.


God who made the earth has filled it with good things.  Every good and perfect gift, we are told, comes down to us from the Father of Light, with whom there is no shadow or threat of turning.  May we offer to God’s care the gifts with which we have been entrusted, that the mission of Christ may go forth from this place, and that in all things God be glorified.

Offertory Prayer

These, your gifts, O God, are returned for glory. Bless us with wisdom to use them as you would have us to; and bless our lives with courage to do your bidding, through Christ our Lord.

OR  (Prayers from the Book of Common Order, Church of Scotland, on

Accept, O Lord, the offering we seek to make, of ourselves and our money; and grant that we may ever work and pray to build a world of peace and joy and freedom; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


With grateful hearts and open hands, O God, we receive freely from you, and are moved by your Spirit to freely give.  Bless the works of our hands that they may accomplish your purposes in our world, through the spirit of Christ who calls us forth in mission.  Amen.

OR from

Lord, we present these tokens of the many blessings you have poured into our lives. Make us people who are unafraid to proclaim your healing mercies. Help these gifts to bring hope and comfort to all those in need. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. Amen.

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.


God’s beautiful creation overflows with beauty and abundance.  May we who open our hands at the Table Christ has spread for us be filled to overflowing with thanksgiving and praise in all things, and strengthened by the bread of Christ to do the works that he has called us to do in our day and place.

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)

Merciful Father, we thank you for these gifts of your creation, this bread and this wine, and we pray that we who eat and drink them in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit in obedience to our Saviour Christ in remembrance of his death and passion may be partakers of his body and his blood.  Renew us by your Holy Spirit, unite us in the body of your Son, and bring us with all your people into the joy of your eternal kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Holy God, creator of heaven and earth, you formed the universe in your wisdom, and set us in families on the earth to live with you in faith. We praise you for good gifts of bread and wine, and for the table you spread in the world as a sign of your love for all people.

We praise you, Lord, for sending your only Son Jesus to live among us, making you known to all who receive him. Even having taken up his cross and dying that we might live, you raised him from death to still be 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.


Gracious God, whose world is diverse and filled with the fruit of creation, we give thanks for this bread and wine – fruit of the earth and work of human hands.  Pour forth your Spirit upon us and upon these gifts.  May they be for us the bread of life and the cup of salvation, as we remember and give thanks for all of your goodness.  Empower us in this meal to be fruitful and forgiving people, open to the others who come our way, and ready to share the good news of the gospel of Jesus 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 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, 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 2020.  Calendar for 2021

 CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2020-21. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2020. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2020 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2020 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2020.

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.

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