Proper 13B, Pentecost +10

Aug. 1

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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 11:26 – 12:13a or Exodus 16:2-4, 9-15
Psalm 51:1-12 or Psalm 78:23-29
Ephesians 4:1-16

John 6:24-35

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

284-Gather us in

272-The Church’s one foundation

73-There’s a wideness in God’s mercy

101-Jesus, thou joy of loving hearts

622-Guide me, O thou great Jehovah

426-The voice of Jesus calls his people

419-All who hunger, gather gladly

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 Ephesians 4:1-16

               Lead then the worthy life

               as called in Jesus’ name,

               one lowly, meek and patient, true

               forbearing all in love.

               In such a life we come,

               in Spirit’s unity.

               Called in one hope, in hope we come

               to answer on our Lord.

               Provision for the day

               comes in the gifts of God,

               transforming our reluctance yet

               to answer Christ with care.

               It is the task we find, the need of joy to free,

               to ground our life in Christ’s delight

               and build on Jesus’ light.

DSM      Suggested tune: Diademata

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 51, in part, is on p. 743.  

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: We gather in the name of the living Christ to worship God.

P: Surely, God is in this place and calls us to worship in spirit and in truth.

L: God’s love and provisions are for you and for all people everywhere.

P: In Christ we receive the Bread of Life, and are renewed in the refreshing Spirit of the living Christ.


L: In the best and worst of times, we hear the call of faith to join in worship.

P: From deep within, we sense the need to offer praise and offer up our burdens.

L: Despite the circumstances we face, God desires to provide the very best for all of earth’s children.

P: So we come to the Table of Christ, where we find God’s provisions in abundance, satisfying the true hungers of our hearts.

OR adapted from

L: Our lives are in the care of God.
P: God has given us abundance and hope.
L: This day we have come to praise and thank God for all that God has done for us.
P: We gather to celebrate God’s love and to offer our lives in service.
L: Come, let us open our hearts to the Lord!
P: Let us rejoice in God’s goodness and love.

OR from

L: Come, all who are hungry and thirsty.
P: The Lord will provide for our needs.
L: Come this day to the table of the Lord.
P: Here we will find welcome and sustenance.
L: Come to this time of gathering and praise.
P: We come with open hearts and spirits, ready to rejoice in God’s gracious love.

OR from

L: Jesus said, “I am the bread of life.”
P: We are hungry for the bread of heaven.
L: Jesus said, “The bread of God gives life to the world.”
P: We are hungry for eternal life.
L: Jesus said, “I am the bread of life.
Whoever comes to me will never be hungry,
and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”
P: We are here to become what we already are:
the body of Christ, food for a hungry world.

OR from

L: From God came the sustenance for people who wandered in wilderness places.
P: That was the bread from heaven!
L: From God comes Jesus Christ, the eternal bread that sustains our lives.
P: Christ is the Bread of Life!
L: Let us praise God for such wondrous gifts of life.
P: Let us sing and raise our voices in gratitude for all that God does for us.

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Creator of all worlds, we lift up our souls to you. All the earth is yours, and all of us are your children. We seek once more to experience your truth, to receive your blessing, and to rise above the limitations we have known. As we open our hands for the Living Bread of Christ at your Table, may we become more than we have believed ourselves to be, and fulfill in our world the mission he has given us; (for we pray as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)


O God, your desire has always been that each of your children might be made whole, and live abundantly and freely in your presence. Center our hearts and minds that we may receive the Bread of Life which you so freely give to all, and empower us to share with others from grateful hearts, so that all may know your love and gracious provisions. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

OR from

God of forgiveness and new beginnings, you feed our hearts with compassion, and nourish our souls with the bread of heaven. As Jesus fed the hungry crowds, knowing that they needed both physical bread and the bread of heaven, fill us with your generous spirit and make us one with Christ (who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

God of love and mercy, you have called us and all your children into one family through the resurrection of your Son Jesus. By his gracious presence, we look with new eyes at the whole human family in its brokenness and pain. We seek your strength and determination to embrace them, love them, heal them, and share with them your great good news of hope and new life.

Hear us as we lift to you our deepest needs, our pressing burdens, our fears and hopes. Be near us, we pray, as your people. Help us to receive your many gifts with gratitude and faithful stewardship.

We pray for those who suffer pain or illness, for the lonely and despairing, for the lost and worn and battered of our world.   And we lift to you the leaders of this and every nation, community and faith, that they would be guided by your spirit, and aware of the needs, especially of the least, of their people.

We pray for those whose lives are closely linked to our own_______________

and for our own needs, which we offer to you in faith.

To the sick, O Lord, give your healing; to the grieving, give hope; to the dying, give your peace; and to all of us, O God, give faith to go forth from this place, determined to live in the light of your good news in Jesus Christ. It is in his name that we offer to you our prayers and our lives. 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. Amen.

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

Mighty and merciful God, may your kindness be known to all. Hear the prayers of all who cry to you; open the eyes of those who never pray for themselves; have mercy on those who are in misery; deal gently with those who sit in darkness; increase the number of those who love and serve you daily. Preserve our land from all things hurtful, preserve our Church from all dangerous error, preserve our people from forgetting that you are their Lord and Savior. Be gracious to those countries that are made desolate by war, famine, disease, or persecution, and grant that the course of the world may be so ordered in obedience to your will that the people may live in security and freedom from want, and their children grow up to be makers of peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Prayers from Common Worship*


Let your merciful ears, O Lord,

be open to the prayers of your humble servants;

and that they may obtain their petitions

make them to ask such things as shall please you;

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

God of our pilgrimage,

you have willed that the gate of mercy

should stand open for those who trust in you:

look upon us with your favour

that we who follow the path of your will

may never wander from the way of life;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Additional Collect

Lord of heaven and earth,

as Jesus taught his disciples to be persistent in prayer,

give us patience and courage never to lose hope,

but always to bring our prayers before you;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

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

Let your continual mercy, O Lord, cleanse and defend your

Church; and, because it cannot continue in safety without

your help, protect and govern it always by your goodness;

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 (© 2021, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

John 6:24-35

            Seeking Jesus, O God, we come.

                        We come to discover your free gift,

                                    the welcome surprise you offer us.

                        We come to do your works, O God,

                                    to faith into the One you sent,

                                                our Manna in your wilderness,

                                                our hope that satisfies:

                                                            Christ Jesus our Lord.

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

Just as Christ has taught the way of life to us, the church, we have the responsibility of bringing life to the world around us through our ministries and the outreach of missions through our connections of faith around the globe. Let us offer gratefully and sacrificially to the work of God who has given all for us.


God has made every provision for our lives on this earth, giving not only enough in creation to keep us alive, but to give us life that is abundant and rich with possibilities. How do we respond to such graciousness and love? May it be by offering not only what we feel obligated to give, but what God’s example has set for us, and what God’s Spirit inspires in us – the very first fruits, the very best of our lives and of our labors.

Offertory Prayer

God of our ancestors, whose laws are timeless and whose ways empower the church, we bring to you the results of our labors. We would recognize all our moments and days as precious gifts from you. We dedicate ourselves anew to the fulfilling of your will through all you entrust to us, not just through the portion we here return. Bless all that the church seeks to accomplish in Christ’s name.


We dedicate this money as one evidence of our stewardship, loving God.  Our silver and gold have no value except as they are invested according to your purposes.  Our lives gain value as we give our time and talents in loving service.  Use all that we have and give to build the community you intend, through Christ our Lord.


By your grace, O God, you have provided abundantly for us. May these offerings from that abundance bring forth fullness of life for your children here and around the world, for the sake of Christ our Lord. Amen.

Invitation to the Table

God is the great provider. From earth’s bounty we receive this bread, worked by human hands, and brought to us to be offered as our spiritual food; and this wine, made by human labor to be brought to this Table as our spiritual drink. All of this is God’s doing, and not just for us, but for all the world. Christ himself invites us to receive with thanksgiving the blessings of God’s hand. Let us come near the Table he has spread with joy and gratitude.

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)

In confidence of your sure provisions, we lift our hearts to you, O God, seeking once again to be fed by your eternal Bread. As we break this loaf and lift up this cup, we pray that your Holy Spirit might come upon them, and upon us, that we might receive true life and strength to live faithfully in your presence in the days to come. Hear us as we offer ourselves to you anew in the name of Christ Jesus our Lord.


We thank you, God that you have provided for all of us who ever were or ever will be by giving yourself to us in love. If we go to the heights of the mountains, or if we make the grave our bed, you are there with us. If we go to the depths of the sea, your right hand holds us securely.

You, O God, sent your own Son that he might be servant of all. He alone, who is closest to your heart, made you known to us. He walked among us, ate with us, showed us his glory in signs, and gave to us this feast of joy as the promise of our salvation from sin and death.

We ask now that you bless us, as we share this bread and cup, that we might be nourished by that same unbounded love and so be encouraged to be your servants in the world, in the example of our Lord Jesus Christ, who with the Holy Spirit, in your holy church is honored and glorified with you, almighty God, now and forever.


As we come to partake the One Holy Loaf, feed us and draw us to unity of heart in Jesus Christ.

Create in us the oneness which embraces people in full measured Christian love

and weeps over our proud division,

stopping us from calling anyone our brother, our sister.

Refresh us and make to flow in our veins your peace,

as we are set together in the one cup.

By the grace of the Holy Spirit, fill our lives with the passion of Christ,

a longing to include in our communion all the peoples loving you,

that our joy may be complete in Jesus Christ our one 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 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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