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Archive for the ‘Denominational, traditional, congregational and secular feasts’ Category

Pentecost +5, Proper 9A

 

July 5

 

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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):

 

Genesis 24:34-38, 42-49, 58-67 or Zechariah 9:9-12
Psalm 45:10-17 or Song of Solomon 2:8-13 or Psalm 145:8-14
Romans 7:15-25a
Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

725-God of the Ages

265-Spirit of God

480-I love to tell the story

64-We sing your mighty power, O God

450-God the Spirit, guide and guardian

81-Let the whole creation cry

257-There’s a spirit in the air

357-We call ourselves Disciples

602-O Master, let me walk with thee

665-Where cross the crowded ways of life

398-Be known to us in breaking bread

400-When you do this, remember me

405-In memory of the Savior’s love

420-I come with joy

 

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 (© 2020, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Zechariah 9:9-12

 

Rejoicing greatly, O daughter of Zion,

come now, prepare to celebrate your Lord.

He, humble and triumphant, comes unto you;

our king over all: victorious is he!

 

Cut off the warriors, and undo the mighty;

cut off the battle bow and sow for peace.

For now our Lord commands peace rise above

and take dominion in the joy of God.

 

In all our pride, in all our consequences,

now we abide in setting captives free,

in ending degradation of the broken

to rouse us all, we prisoners of hope!

 

11.10.11.10.     Suggested tune: Bede

 

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 45 is not available in the hymnal.  

 

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 hear the voice of one who calls to us to come and find rest.

P: We come burdened with much, but will heed the voice of Jesus.

L: We have much to learn from him, and he will give us all that we need.

P: May we be made ready to receive the yoke of Christ, and empowered to live in it.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Following Jesus is difficult. So many things have laid claim to our lives.
P: We don’t know if we can let go and truly follow him.
L: Lord, search our hearts and speak to our spirits. Encourage us to freely follow you.
P: Help us to be dependable disciples, joyfully proclaiming your transforming power and love.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: We are called together this day to praise God.
P: We ask that God will put us in pathways to service to others.
L: The Lord will walk with us as we faithfully witness to Christ’s love.
P: Open our hearts, Lord, to receive your words and will.
L: Come, let us worship God!
P: Let us sing our praises to God our Redeemer and Healer.

 

OR  for Independence Day

L: We have come to sing, rejoicing in the good that walks this land by day.

P: We have come to be silent, repenting of the evil that stalks it by night. 

L: We have come to this place because here we are reminded that God is our Creator and our only hope in the world.

P: Here we pledge our loyalty to God, so that our citizenship might be more responsible, our nation more just and humble, and our world more at peace.

   may add:

L: Let us celebrate our freedoms as people of faith, as well as conscience.

P: Praise the Lord!

 

OR for Independence Day from ministrymatters.com

L: In the midst of celebration, we are also in sorrow.

P: Lord, hear our cries.

L: For all those who have given their lives so that we may have our freedom,

P: Lord, hear our cries.

L: For all those who struggle and strive against great difficulties,

P: Lord, hear our cries.

L: We praise God who has blessed us with freedom and peace.

P: Let our lives be a blessing to others as we serve God in this world.  

 

OR for Independence Day, adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: Independence Day is this week.

P: We celebrate a time when our country declared its independence from foreign domination.

L: But many things dominate our hearts: fear, apathy, intolerance, anger.

P: May God hear our celebrations, but also our cries for help.

L: Remember how God has blessed you, and be a blessing to others.

P: May God keep our hearts and minds open to the word and the way of faithfulness.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Come to the Lord, all you people!
P: We come, seeking God’s healing love.
L: Make your hearts ready to discover God’s power in your lives.
P: We open our hearts and spirits to receive God’s loving gifts.
L: Hallelujah!
P: AMEN.

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Welcome this day to a time of rest.
P: We come, bearing burdens and cares.
L: Place your lives in the loving hands of God
P: May God heal our spirits and strengthen us.
L: Trust in God who is always with you.
P: Lord, this day we come to you in faith and trust for your healing mercies.  


OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: What shall we do? Our hearts are heavy; our spirits are worn with care.
P: To whom can we turn for soothing and healing?

L: Bring your cares to the Lord
P: God hears our cries.

L: Come, now the time is ready for worship.
P: We bring our lives to you, O Lord.  

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Almighty God, you pour out the spirit of grace and supplication on all who desire it. Deliver us from cold hearts and wandering thoughts that with steady minds and burning zeal we may worship you in spirit and in truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

We gather together this morning, O Lord, eager to feel your healing touch for our wounded spirits and weary souls. Flood our lives with your peace. Shine your light of joy in our souls this day, for we pray in Christ’s name (as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Most Holy God, we await the touch of your Spirit with eagerness. We ask that you enter the lives of each one of us today, refreshing and renewing and healing us with the power of your loving Spirit, so that we may live with purpose, enthusiasm, and courage in the way of Jesus our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Most gracious and loving God, you fill our hearts with praise for renewed life in Christ Jesus. Fill our minds with meditations which are noble and true, that we may be strengthened in our union with Him, for we offer our prayers and our worship in his name (for we pray as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Lord, we want to follow you whoever you lead. Reach out to us this day, stirring our souls and spirits with the winds of your power that we may faithfully be your disciples. For we ask this in Jesus’ name (praying as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR for Independence Day

We have come to sing, rejoicing in the good that walks this land by day.  We have come to be silent, repenting of the evil that stalks it by night.  We have come to this place because here we are reminded that you are both our creator and our conscience.  Here all our loyalties are put in their proper place, ordered behind our allegiance to you.  Be with us in our celebration and our confession, that our citizenship might become more responsible, our nation more humble, and our world more dependable.  In the name of Christ we pray (as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Creator of all worlds, we lift up our souls to you. All the earth is yours, all who dwell here are your children. We seek once more to experience your truth, to receive your blessing, to ascend above the limitations we have known. You are strong and mighty beyond our imagining. We aspire to become more than we have believed ourselves to be, individually and together. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

God of all grace and mercy, you have made an amazing and beautiful world – diverse and teeming with the bounty and beauty of your artful hand.  You have made us mortals in your own image, and given us such a marvelous variety of gifts by which to praise and serve you, and to serve the common good.  Hear our varied expressions of thanksgiving, as we look to you for care and guidance to use every skill and art with which you’ve blessed us for the blessing of humanity.

 

We seek new ways, O Lord, to reach into the lives of others who are searching for meaning in their lives and to discover their own giftedness, and to give them encouragement, love, and peace on that journey.  We look to you to guide us as partners with Christ as we minister to those who are hurting, lonely, sick, grieving, or in any danger.  May our openness to your Spirit at work within us as your people be a sign of your ministries at work within us, your church.  Make of this community a home of peace and empowerment for those who are struggling to find their future, and a place of compassion and justice for those who need it most.

 

Hear our prayers, O God, for those whose lives are closely linked with our own, whose names cross our hearts and our lips so often, and whose needs are many.  Help us to entrust them to your care, as we offer up our own needs and our hearts’ desires to you in silence…

 

As Jesus prayed that all who follow him might be one, reshape us as your faithful disciples, and knit us tightly with all those who profess Christ into his one body.  May our unity and our diversity proclaim his name to all the world, as we glorify you together, offering our varied gifts for your use.  For we pray in his name and in his spirit.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Welcoming Lord, we come before your throne of grace today. It’s been quite a week for some, filled with busyness and exciting activities; for others it has been a long and lonely week. Still others have experienced ongoing troubles and frustrations, sorrows and sadness. Throughout all these conditions and at all times, you are with each one of us, giving us strength, calming our spirits; healing our wounds, celebrating the delights and triumphs.

 

This morning we name in our hearts and by our voices loved ones who struggle with issues of health, loneliness, sorrow; we name in our hearts and by our voices those who have found great joy. Be with each person, giving strength and courage for all the times ahead. Help each one of us to remember that we can always come to you with our burdens and you will take them from us.

 

OR for Independence Day:

Almighty God, in your eyes a nation is neither favored nor foreign.  You are the sole creator and sovereign judge of us all.  We pray that our nation would not dare approach you as if you were our patron and protector.  Yet we boldly approach you as our God and Savior, seeking the assurance of your presence and the guidance of your Spirit.  Teach us to love our land in a way that will help others love theirs.  Lead us in the knowledge that love of country can coexist with love for the world.

 

We pray for your world and its peoples.  Especially we lift to you those who are in need, those who are suffering, those whose lives are subject to the whims of others.  Those people are not just in far away places, but are ever so near.

 

We pray for the sick and the dying, for those whose lives are filled with hope at the promise of healing and wholeness, and for those who feel cut off from all promise.  With gratitude, we trust your promises, and we hold before you those whose lives are closely linked with our own, and our own needs…

 

Take our prayers for greatness, O God, and turn them into prayers for goodness.  Take our prayers for success and turn them into prayers of service.  So that we in all things might glorify you our sovereign God, even as we honor you in Christ, in whose name we pray.  Amen.

 

OR for Independence Day

Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on us.  Open our hearts to a far-reaching compassion that extends around the world, to the most obscure corners of this troubled planet.  Let us remember you are God of all people: the beautiful and the homely; the well-dressed and the naked; the rich & the hungry; the ones who speak loudly and those who barely utter a word; the ones who have bodies of steel and those whose bodies are broken and bent; the very young and the very old.  God of time and space, give us time to grow up in your spirit; give us room to grow up in our faith so that our ears may hear the knock at the door, the cry for help, the whimper of weakness, the sigh of loneliness and so our hands will reach out with the love of your Son.  Teach us the meaning of this kind of love which knows no boundary and no second thoughts but springs forth like a fountain.  And may the source of this love remember us as we remember him in our responses of faithfulness.  Amen

 

OR adapted as an beginning of intercessions, from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

For our country, O God, we give thanks. For our immigrant ancestors who came here across an ocean that seemed so wide; for their years of struggle against obstacles that we have never faced; for the sacrifices of others who built our country and defended it against all the things that would go wrong; for opportunities in our own lifetimes to do something that would really make a difference; for a place in which to raise a family, to seek to do well in our work, to worship you in freedom, and to cherish the hopes and dreams for the years ahead—for these and for all, O God, we are deeply thankful.

 

OR adapted as an beginning of intercessions, from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

God of Celebrations and Sorrows, we will wave the flag this week and our hearts beat with pride at the stirring sounds of the bands. Fireworks emblazon the skies, and families gather for celebrations. But in too many places there is little to celebrate. Our spirits ache for people both far and near who suffer and struggle just to have the basic necessities of life, while we live in abundance. Forgive us when our celebration clouds the needs of others. It is important for us to celebrate, but we must never forget that you have given us a ministry and mission to perform here and now. Help us be mindful of the many ways in which we can reach out to others. By our attitudes and our actions, may we be those who would bring hope, comfort, healing, and peace in the name of Christ.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

Patient and Loving God, we are looking toward a national holiday in which we celebrate freedom and independence. We will hear the mighty strains of marching bands and see the banners unfurled. May our hearts be moved by the events. And yet may we hear your call to us to remember that it is you who gives true independence and hope in your healing and restoring love.

 

The oppression of disease, poverty, terrorism pours into our lives and lays claim to our spirits. We feel as though we are again in bondage. Free us, O Lord. Open our hearts to receive your healing words of comfort and hope. Enable us to be people who offer compassion in the presence of sorrow; hope in the presence of desolation; light in the presence of darkness.

 

Walk with us and strengthen us. Give us spirits of eagerness to serve and witness to your love. As we have brought names of those near and dear to us to this day, asking your healing mercies and blessings, help us to remember that we stand in need of those blessings as well. Help us to receive the blessings and to use the gifts which we have been given to serve you in all that we say, think, and do. This we pray in the one who brings us the freedom of life in your Spirit, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

What a weekend it is, Lord. It is time to gather and celebrate, time to reflect on the blessings of the freedoms that have been so sorely fought for and won, time to commit ourselves to offering the freedoms we cherish to others. We have gathered here in the midst of the business of the summer season to seek your will, to find peace and directions for our lives.

 

Bless us, O Lord, with wisdom tempered with compassion. Remind us that we have such freedom because others who have gone before have stood for principles of hope. Do not let our pride of country overwhelm the needs that still abound within our walls and our land. Where there is hatred, help us to bring your words of love. Where there are injustices, help us to correct unjust systems and become advocates for the voiceless and powerless. Where there is apathy, empower us to bring the good news of your gracious transforming love. Be with us this day and all our days as we seek to follow you. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

O God, the protector of all who trust in you,

without whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy:

increase and multiply upon us your mercy;

that with you as our ruler and guide

we may so pass through things temporal

that we lose not our hold on things eternal;

grant this, heavenly Father,

for our Lord Jesus Christ’s sake,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Eternal God,

comfort of the afflicted and healer of the broken,

you have fed us at the table of life and hope:

teach us the ways of gentleness and peace,

that all the world may acknowledge

the kingdom of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Gracious Father,

by the obedience of Jesus

you brought salvation to our wayward world:

draw us into harmony with your will,

that we may find all things restored in him,

our Saviour Jesus Christ.

 

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

O God, you have taught us to keep all your commandments

by loving you and our neighbor: Grant us the grace of your

Holy Spirit, that we may be devoted to you with our whole

heart, and united to one another with pure affection; 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 (© 2020, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30

 

As those unknowing do, we come, O God,

come and play awkwardly

about the scenery of life.

Yet simply are we bid to stay

the answer plainly as might babes

and savor in the rest you bring

the easy yoke and burden light.

Thus keep us, O God.

 

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

Gratitude is born of the heart that can truly take in the goodness of God all around it.  All of us have been blessed beyond measure by the abundance of God’s love and provisions.  Let us bring forth offerings that stand as living witness of our faith – faith resting in the extravagance of God’s grace.

 

OR

Every time we come to the table, we are called to share in the offering. Christ’s body and blood was and is the offering of all offerings. That alone ought to appeal to us to give. Our giving will aid others in remembering him and give them the good news of life in Christ.

 

If our offering enables us to feed the hungry, give a drink of clean water to the thirsty, welcome a stranger, clothe the naked, visit the sick and imprisoned, then Christ himself will bless that offering. Hear him say, “Come, blessed ones of my Father, and inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, for as you did it for one of the least of my brothers and sisters, you did it for me.”

 

OR

Love is a powerful force in the world, stronger than hatred or fear or greed. The love of Jesus inspires us and makes us able to share generously the gifts we have received from God. Our gifts are one way that we love one another and the world around us, the world God loves.  Let us be as generous with our giving as our God has been with love, with mercy, and with gifts poured into our lives.

 

OR

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.

 

Offertory Prayer

O God, we thank you for your great generosity. All that we are and all that we have is a gift from you. Help us to serve one another and so reflect your spirit and goodness. Accept these offerings and grant that the cause to which they are devoted may prosper under your guidance.

 

OR

Almighty God, giver of every good and perfect gift, teach us to give to you all that we have and all that we are, that we may praise you not with our words only, but with our whole lives.

 

OR

We give you thanks, most gracious God, for the beauty of earth and sky and sea; for the richness of mountains, plains and rivers; for the songs of birds and the loveliness of flowers. We praise you for these good gifts and pray that we may safeguard them for your children. Help us to use the gifts of work and service to your glory and grant that we may continue to grow in our grateful enjoyment of your abundance, to the honor and glory of your name. Amen.

 

Invitation to the Table

When Jesus sat at table with tax collectors and sinners, he proclaimed God’s care knows no bounds. We proclaim again the comfort and challenge of that witness: All of you are invited now to share God’s table and be nourished by the Bread of Life.

 

OR

Christ invites to his supper all those who desire to be nourished by the food of God – this bread, his body; this cup, his blood. This is not an easy thing for us to grasp, and yet the simplest of all things – that in Christ Jesus, God was reconciling the world to God’s own self. As those who seek to grow in faithful discipleship, let us prepare our hearts to receive the gifts of God that are given for all the people of God.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

As the prophets of old knew, so may we also know: When we live by the Spirit, we will inherit the kingdom of God. The Spirit of love and forgiveness grows on the tree of life. This Spirit is available to all who seek it. Eat of this fruit, for it is the body of Christ, given for you.

 

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)

 

  1. You, O Lord, have brought us to this table as a people ready to receive from your hand all that we could ever need or ask for. As we break this bread, open our hearts to receive the Bread of Heaven, that we may never hunger again.
  2. Pour out your spirit, O God, upon this bread and upon this cup. May we who receive the Cup of Salvation never know thirst, but rather be refreshed to bear your gifts to the world in all its needs, so that Christ may ever be made presence in our lives.

 

OR

You, O God, have come to us in Christ Jesus to teach by example the way of faithful living. As Christ’s disciples, we pray that you would make yourself known to us now in these gifts of bread and wine. Send forth your Spirit upon us, and upon these gifts, that they may be for us the body and blood of Christ, so that we may indeed be the Body of Christ, cleansed by his blood, strengthened to love you and serve you in this world by serving others in the Spirit of him who was made perfect, Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Holy One, you speak to us in silence, yet all languages interpret you. Because you call us into this community, we are able to become a gift to one another. We pray for your Holy Spirit to descend upon us and upon these gifts of bread and wine, that in sharing them we may discern your presence which becomes our life. We thank you for your anointed one, Jesus, who through his life, crucifixion, death and resurrection lived fully the promise of redemptive wholeness that is available to all who would obey your creating will. We celebrate his gifts, we rejoice in your presence, loving God, now and always.

 

OR

  1. Loving and life-giving God, you have called us toward living faithfully by giving what we have received at your hand. Bless now this bread which we break, that as we receive it we may freely give ourselves as bread for the sake of all who hunger.
  2. Pour out your Spirit, O God, upon this wine which we bless, that as we receive it from your hand we may be ever ready to pour out our lives for the sake of others who thirst for you, in the spirit of Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Our God, you sent your brooding Spirit upon the deep when creation dawned upon your Word. You sent your brooding Spirit upon Mary when you came Incarnate in Jesus, your Word made flesh. You sent your brooding Spirit upon the Church when you created of us a people devoted in Jesus to your love in this time and in this place.

 

Send now your Spirit to brood on us that we may be full of your love as the waters cover the sea. As Jesus claimed bread and wine  to reveal himself anew, send now Holy Spirit upon this day that our communion  may build of us the Body of Christ, that our meeting with you may feed our souls on heaven’s food, that our joy may be complete in the love your give to us for one another.  Include us wholly in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

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…’

 

MORE…

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 2019.  Calendar for 2020

Sun 1 Dec 2019. CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2019-20. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2019. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2019 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2019 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2019.

 

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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Easter 5A

 

May 10

 

This ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in West Virginia is supported by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund.

 

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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):

 

Acts 7:55-60
Psalm 31:1-5, 15-16
1 Peter 2:2-10
John 14:1-14

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Any of the Easter hymns are appropriate.

275-Christ is made the sure foundation

278-Here, O Lord, your servants gather

288-O God of vision

278-Here, O Lord, your servants gather

635-Faith of our Mothers (alt. text)

423-Become to us the Living Bread

 

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 (© 2020, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On 1 Peter 2:2-10

 

Beyond our discontent,

O Savior make us now

expand our diligence.

For in your gracing life

upon a teeming heart

you satisfy our hope.

 

Indeed, as living stones

into the Temple’s place,

we sanctify joy’s reach.

Ah yes, Thou Living Stone,

rejected yet acquired,

confirm this Temple’s grace!

 

Yes, in your gracious spell,

Lord Jesus, we attest

your wonder in our rise.

Beyond our narrow prize

quite instantly we seek

a certainty of peace.

 

Come to the purified;

establish here the will

to rise in character.

For in this moment, Lord,

we undertake your call

and learn afresh to love.

 

6.6.6.D     Suggested tune: Lauda Domini

 

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 31:1-8 is on p. 738

 

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: Jesus is the way;

P: He invites us to walk with Him.

L: He is the truth;

P: He invites us to learn from him.

L: Jesus is the life;

P: He invites us to share it with Him.

L: Let us gather in the presence of the living Christ.

P: Alleluia!

 

OR

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 is for you and for all people everywhere.

P: That we may share God’s love and life, may we be renewed in the refreshing Spirit of the living Christ.

L: The living Christ is with us.

P: Praise the Lord!

 

OR

L: The God of all creation makes us one in the flesh.

P:  Let us join hearts and voices in praise.

L: In Jesus Christ, we are made one in spirit.

P:  Let us be united in his faith and in his mission.

L: Through the mothering love of the Holy Spirit, we are joined into God’s one family.

P:  Let us be known as Christ’s true disciples by the love in which we hold one another and all of God’s children on earth.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

Most gracious God, as we continue to celebrate the resurrection of Christ, we pray that we may be bound together in Christian love and that our faith and fellowship may be a witness through which your spirit will bring others into your church. We humbly thank you for your many blessings you have given us. We ask that we may learn how to truly be Easter people and always remember that we are celebrating resurrection day every day, for we pray through Jesus our Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR for Mother’s Day

Loving God, it is you who gives life and breath to everyone, and in you alone can we find life, breath, and meaning for ourselves and for our world. For those who have been blessed with an awareness of your mothering care, who have looked to you for guidance and have nurtured us as mothers in faith to this day, we give you thanks. We pray that you would unite us as your children to be a nurturing influence on others, that they too may enjoy full life within your family. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father,…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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, especially___________.   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.

 

OR

How wondrous is your great forgiving love, mighty God. How wondrous is your life-giving power. With joy we revel in the glow of the sun this day, and we wonder at the life everlasting that you have opened for us in raising Jesus from the dead.

As people born of his spirit, we are awakened to a world that is caught still in the night-shades of sin, and broken by its suffering. And here, in the midst of all death, we long to bring life; we would see Jesus, and we would lift him up as a beacon of your love and promise to our world.

Hear our prayers for those who are suffering this day—the hungry and homeless, the sick and imprisoned, the angry, the lonely and lost. We pray that you would not let our concern pass from our hearts as these words pass from our lips, but rather that you would empower us to do your work of healing and reconciliation in their lives.

We especially lift to you this day all those who are close to our hearts, whose needs we are so often reminded of, and for ourselves in our own needs.

As you made a fearful and disjointed band of disciples into your holy church, we pray that you would make us anew, that we, your body in our world, would serve you in joy and hope and thankfulness all the days of our life together in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whose glorious name we pray.

 

OR (for Mother’s Day)

God of all love and holiness, on this day of love and wonder, we are awakened to the mysteries of life that you create. As we give thanks to you for your wonderful deeds of love and grace, we pray for the human family that we might be renewed and restored to love in your image.

 

Hear our prayers for families and those who journey alone, that we might establish within your church such a glowing love and acceptance that friendship might be strengthened and the joy of fellowship be known, that none may journey in loneliness.

 

Help us, we pray, to be a strength to the friendships and romance that you kindle in the hearts of people who love, that relationships between them might blossom according to your will, and that homes of peace and grace would spring up in this age of selfishness and hate.

 

Free us in love to serve our neighbors, especially as we consider the poor, the hungry, the oppressed and the ill, as we remember…

 

And help us to serve as agents of healing to our nation which is struggling to regain its footing in a time of distrust, pain and upheaval. May we be empowered to make our communities, grounded in your love for our world, places of forgiveness and reconciliation, where love is practiced in practical ways in our dealings with others who need us and need you.

 

Fill us with your Spirit as a people of faith that we may serve you all our days, and look forward to your heavenly feast of joy and love in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

OR

Loving God, it is you who gave life and breath to everyone in our world, and in you alone can we find life, breath and meaning for ourselves and our world.

 

For those who have been blessed with an awareness of your mothering care, who have looked to you for guidance and nurture, we give you thanks, and we pray that you would unite us within your family to be a nurturing influence on others, that they too may enjoy life within your family.

 

For those who hunger and thirst, who are lost and alone, who yearn to be given new direction, new hope and new life, we pray that you would care for them through us. Let us be seen and known as your faithful children in this community of faith to which you have given birth. Help us to uphold your name by acting, as Jesus our brother, in faithfulness and trust in you.

 

Gather us, Lord, as we lift to you the special needs we bring to this day, in silence.

 

Under the shadow of your wings we find our refuge. In your gentle care we find our home. And in your living Spirit we are united this day, Lord, as we offer to you our prayers in the name of your holy Child, Jesus, the Christ.

 

OR

Loving God, you come to us with the tender mercies, patience, and strength of a loving mother. We see you in the very living of our days, and yet we so often fail to praise you or to offer our burdens to you. Hear us, Lord, as we lift to you our prayers for others and for ourselves.

 

We pray for those in need–those who hunger or are homeless. We pray for those in pain—the abused, brokenhearted and lonely. We pray for the sick in body and in mind, and for those who grieve.

 

For the life of this community and all those who put their trust in you for all their todays and all their tomorrows, we pray that your lovingkindness to the world would be offered through our hands, our words, our deeds, our hearts.

 

Free us, Lord, as your own people, to sing your praise in the work of our everyday lives. In those comings and goings of our simple and complicated living, make us instruments of your peace and grace in weary days with weary people.

 

Bless our memories, O God, that in our remembering we may partake of the mystery that is eternal life in its fullness. For we pray in the presence of your risen Christ, our Lord and Savior. Amen.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

who through your only-begotten Son Jesus Christ

have overcome death and opened to us the gate of everlasting life:

grant that, as by your grace going before us

you put into our minds good desires,

so by your continual help

we may bring them to good effect;

through Jesus Christ our risen Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Eternal God,

whose Son Jesus Christ is the way, the truth, and the life:

grant us to walk in his way,

to rejoice in his truth,

and to share his risen life;

who is alive and reigns, now and for ever.

 

Additional Collect

 

Risen Christ,

your wounds declare your love for the world

and the wonder of your risen life:

give us compassion and courage

to risk ourselves for those we serve,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

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

Almighty God, whom truly to know is everlasting life: Grant

us so perfectly to know your Son Jesus Christ to be the way,

the truth, and the life, that we may steadfastly follow his

steps in the way that leads to eternal life; through Jesus Christ

your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity

of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Collect of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2020, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

John 14:1-14

In wonder, O our God, we bid our pause

to stay and know, adore as shown

this quality divine.

Invite us evermore to exercise the more

that mingling energy of life and joy

that you employ as we implore

your presence in the life of prayer.

 

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

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 the greatest gift of all in Jesus Christ, as we present our tithes and gifts in praise of God.

 

OR

As we remember Jesus, we are reminded of just how clearly his life demonstrated the truth that giving is the only proper expression of loving. Surely one can give without loving, but one cannot love without giving. So God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son.

 

But Jesus turned a corner in our understanding of the relationship between loving and giving when he indicated that not only does love result in giving, but giving also results in loving. He reminded us that “where your treasure is, there your heart will be.”

 

In our stewardship – our conscientious Christian management of resources—we find our concern achieving a wider and wider circle to include all those in our embrace whose needs are alleviated by our giving. In giving, we are able to go where we have never been, to embrace those whom we have never met, and express God’s love to them in languages we have never learned.

 

Our young ones love to sing “He’s got the whole world in his hands.” And when we follow God’s leadership, demonstrated in the loving ministry of Jesus Christ, we discover that “We’ve got the whole world in our arms,” embraced with more than sentiment, loved in more than words.

 

Offertory Prayer

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.

 

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)

 

  1. It is right and good to give thanks to you almighty God, creator of heaven and earth; for by your word was the world created, and by your breath did the first mortals come to life. In the life of Christ, we have receive life that is abundant and transformative. Bless, we pray, this Bread which we offer up to you, that as we receive it we might be strengthened to abide in the way that leads to life eternal.

 

  1. Pour out your Spirit upon us, O Lord, and upon this cup of salvation. May we who receive the blood of Christ be cleansed by his offering of self for us and for the world, and refreshed in spirit and will to do his bidding in the days which lie ahead. This we offer in Christ Jesus 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…’

 

MORE…

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 2019. Calendar for 2020

Sun 1 Dec 2019. CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2019-20. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2019. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2019 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2019 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2019.

 

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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Epiphany +6, Ordinary Time 6A

    Week of Compassion (Disciples of Christ)

Feb. 16

 

This ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in West Virginia is supported by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund.

 

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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 more resources

Deuteronomy 30:15-20 or Sirach 15:15-20
Psalm 119:1-8
1 Corinthians 3:1-9
Matthew 5:21-37

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

23 – Praise, my soul, the God of heaven

568 – ‘Tis the gift to be simple

284 – Gather us in

288 – O God of vision

578 – I need thee every hour

528 – Give Thanks

393 – One Bread, one Body

420 – I come with joy

429 – You Satisfy the Hungry Heart

420 – I come with joy

 

Suggestions from Week of Compassion for 2020:

Seed, Scattered and Sown / CH 395

Cantemos Al Se ˜nor (Let’s Sing Unto the Lord) / CH 60

For the Healing of the Nations / CH 668

In the Bulb There is a Flower / CH 638

Now the Green Blade Rises / CH 230

Spirit / CH 249

For the Fruit of All Creation / CH 714

All Who Hunger, Gather Gladly / CH 419

 

More hymn suggestions, as well as helpful references for use of the arts in worship, are available from the United Church of Christ website.

 

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 119 is on p. 759

 

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: Come, let us worship the Lord our God,

P:  That we might discern the will of our Maker.

L: Come, let us worship the Lord our God,

P:  That we might recall the bondage from which God has delivered us.

L: Come, let us worship the Lord our God,

P:  That we might become the people God is calling us to be.

 

OR

L: We gather in the house of the God who loves us, and who calls us each by name, to learn to live together as God’s family.

P:  From all walks of life, in every age and stage, we are called into God’s presence. 

L: May we all take our places together in building up Christ’s body, the Church.  May we learn new ways to join in reaching toward God’s vision for the world: unity and peace, joy and faith.

P:  May our worship strengthen our souls, and build our lives together as God’s people, one in Christ Jesus.

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

LEADER: God is our refuge and our strength, a very present help in trouble.

PEOPLE: Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change, though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble with its tumult.

LEADER: This morning we enlarge our hearts; we offer our prayers; we share our treasure with those siblings in our world who are dealing with tumult and disaster and injustice.

PEOPLE: We will not be discouraged. We shall remember that God’s steadfast love is always with us and the whole world, that God’s compassion is for each and all.

LEADER: We will celebrate that love and compassion can do far more than “we can ask or imagine”!

PEOPLE: May we join our imaginations to God’s imagination as we live in hope!

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org — visit the website for more current resources

L: Gardeners do not know what will come of the seeds they plant with their hands. Yet they come away with dirty fingernails and expectant hearts.

P: When those sprouts emerge, what will the future be like?    

L: When any of us suffer, support from others allows us to imagine futures more promising than our present.

P: When hearts mend and new life blooms, what will the future be like?    

L: One plants. Another waters. But God gives the growth. What is the future like when we join together as co-workers in God’s service?

P: Come, join hands. See the fruitful future God brings even now.

 

OR

L: Let us turn to the God who loves us and send us into the world to live in love.

P: May we be mindful of the needs of others and open our hearts to God’s calling.

L: God will empower us to open our arms to embrace our neighbor’s need.

P: And send us into the world of bearers of grace, mercy, justice and love.

L: May the God of wisdom and truth come to us and fill us.

P: May the God of compassion and hope, make us faithful to Christ’s mission.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

O God, source of all beauty and goodness, your grace comes fresh every morning.  In each new day you give us light.  We praise your for your never‑failing love that satisfies our needs and shows us the way to follow.  We rejoice in your constant care, for you are faithful in love for all people, offering the world salvation through Jesus Christ  (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR (adapted from Common Worship)

Almighty God, you alone can bring order to the chaos of our existence.  Give us grace to love what you desire for us, and to reach toward your promises, so that, among the many changes of this world, our hearts may be set on life in your presence, where alone true joy can be found.  This we pray through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org

Gathering God, we give thanks for the vision, adventure, and passion that have brought us together in this holy place. Help us to be open today: thankful to be your church together, doing that which by your design cannot be done apart. Challenge us, inspire us, strengthen and renew us. May our worship strengthen us to do more than we can imagine, that your world might be healed, that your justice might come, that your hope might be spread. (This we pray as your Son has taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

God of Good Growth, Prepare the soil of our hearts to receive your life-bearing call that we would invest our gifts with confidence and joy in the fruitful future you bring forth. We pray in the name of the One who makes all things new (who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Almighty God, you have called us together as a people for praise. As we offer up our gifts in worship at the Table you have prepared, remold us as a holy people, fit to serve you by serving your world, in the name and spirit of the Christ. (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

God of all grace and mercy, you have made an amazing and beautiful world – diverse and teeming with the bounty and beauty of your artful hand. You have made us mortals in your own image, and given us such a marvelous variety of gifts by which to praise and serve you, and to serve the common good. Hear our varied expressions of thanksgiving, as we look to you for care and guidance to use every skill and art with which you’ve blessed us for the blessing of humanity.

 

We seek new ways, O Lord, to reach into the lives of others who are searching for meaning in their lives and to discover their own giftedness, and to give them encouragement, love, and peace on that journey. We look to you to guide us as partners with Christ as we minister to those who are hurting, lonely, sick, grieving, or in any danger. May our openness to your Spirit at work within us as your people be a sign of your ministries at work within us, your church. Make of this community a home of peace and empowerment for those who are struggling to find their future, and a place of compassion and justice for those who need it most.

 

Hear our prayers, O God, for those whose lives are closely linked with our own, whose names cross our hearts and our lips so often, and whose needs are many. Help us to entrust them to your care, as we offer up our own needs and our hearts’ desires to you in silence…

 

As Jesus prayed that all who follow him might be one, reshape us as your faithful disciples, and knit us tightly with all those who profess Christ into his one body. May our unity and our diversity proclaim his name to all the world, as we glorify you together, offering our varied gifts for your use. For we pray in his name and in his spirit (as he taught us to pray, Our Father…)

 

OR

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.

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org  (note that the last two paragraphs are included in an invocation, above)

LEADER: God of grace and wonder,

PEOPLE: be with us in this place.

LEADER: We love you, Holy God. We love you for the feast that is life: for friendships and laughter, intimacy and trust, moments of discovering deep truth, hidden potentials we never knew we had; for beauty– serene beauty and rugged beauty, the world you have crafted; and for the words, sounds, and colors with which people reflect and explore life. God of grace and wonder,

PEOPLE: be with us in this place.

LEADER: We love you, holy God. We love you for the challenges of community: for moments of joy and celebration, for times of anxiety and questioning, for opportunities to listen deeply, for moments to start anew, for possibilities of reconciliation, for partnerships to work for peace and hope, for commitments to join hands for justice. God of grace and wonder,

PEOPLE: be with us in this place.

LEADER: Gathering God, we give thanks for the vision, adventure, and passion that have brought us together in this holy place. Help us to be open today: grateful to meet Jesus in each other and in our neighbors near and far; happy to do a new thing; thankful to be your church together, to do that which by your design cannot be done apart. Challenge us, inspire us, strengthen and renew us. God of grace and wonder,

PEOPLE: Be with us in this place; may our worship today strengthen us to do more than we can imagine, that your world might be healed, that your justice might come, that your hope might be spread. May it be so! Amen.

 

OR

Loving God, give us grace to become a more compassionate and giving people, as we pray for all who suffer; for those who are deprived of the most basic needs of life; who never have enough room, or clothes, or food; for whom no one seems to care.

 

Ours is a world filled with many who live in fear; who cannot trust tomorrow because it may bring terror or famine or war; for those whose days are without hope, who see no promise but only new misery.  As we know the Christ who has called us to his mission, may we bring hope and a future by the faithful deeds which he has taught us.

 

Hear our prayers, O Lord, for all those whose souls are wounded by the hurt of the world; for all those who can help and who find a way to help, overcoming apathy and obstacles, sometimes risking life.  We thank you for people of hope and courage who in their caring share love with the world.

 

Now rescue us from helplessness and fill us with new wisdom which forbids our blindness to the terrible needs of our brothers and sisters.  Become yourself our spirits’ Spirit and let us be your presence in our needy world, through Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on us.  Open our hearts to a far-reaching compassion that extends around the world, to the most obscure corners of this troubled planet.  Let us remember you are God of all people: the beautiful and the homely; the well-dressed and the naked; the rich & the hungry; the ones who speak loudly and those who barely utter a word; the ones who have bodies of steel and those whose bodies are broken and bent; the very young and the very old.

 

God of time and space, give us time to grow up in your spirit; give us room to grow up in our faith so that our ears may hear the knock at the door, the cry for help, the whimper of weakness, the sigh of loneliness and so our hands will reach out with the love of your Son.  Teach us the meaning of this kind of love which knows no boundary and no second thoughts but springs forth like a fountain.  And may the source of this love remember us as we remember him in our responses of faithfulness.  Amen

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

you have created the heavens and the earth

and made us in your own image:

teach us to discern your hand in all your works

and your likeness in all your children;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who with you and the Holy Spirit reigns supreme over all things,

now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

God our creator,

by your gift

the tree of life was set at the heart of the earthly paradise,

and the bread of life at the heart of your Church:

may we who have been nourished at your table on earth

be transformed by the glory of the Saviour’s cross

and enjoy the delights of eternity;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Almighty God,

give us reverence for all creation

and respect for every person,

that we may mirror your likeness

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

O God, the strength of all who put their trust in you:

Mercifully accept our prayers; and because in our weakness

we can do nothing good without you, give us the help of your

grace, that in keeping your commandments we may please

you both in will and deed; 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 (© 2020, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Matthew 5:21-37

More thoroughly than we conceive, O God,

you lead us to a graciousness of heart

that sweeps away conceit and pride.

O Lord our God, begin in us the style

of your commissioning of love

that we become the bearers of integrity

in all your ways of peace

and difficult compassion’s grace.

 

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

Giving is not a casual act—it relates God’s work to our work. Peter writes: “as each has received a gift, employ it for one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace, that God may be glorified through Jesus Christ.” Let us give as people whose work is inextricably linked to God’s great works of creation, redemption and empowerment.

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

In a world so filled with brokenness and sorrow, it would be easy to lose ourselves in never ending grief, to be choked by our outrage, to be paralyzed by the enormity of suffering, to feel our hearts squeeze tight with hopelessness. Instead, this morning, let us simply breathe together as we hold our hearts open. Breathing in as our hearts fill with compassion. Breathing out as we pray for healing in our world and in our lives. Breathing in, opening ourselves to the transforming power of love. Breathing out as we pray for peace in our world and in our lives. Breathing in as we hold hope in our hearts. Breathing out as we pray for justice in our world and in our lives. May we know our strength, may we be filled with courage, may our love flow from us into this world. Through our gifts to Week of Compassion may our love indeed flow into the whole world, helping to bring hope and healing to those facing disaster, showing God’s care near and far.

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org

When violence reigns, disaster strikes, or resources are scarce, a future with hope can seem far away. In those times, our communities can act as sources of critical support. We embody love, the Holy Source of all hope and healing. Paul writes that we are all co-workers in God’s service. We each have gifts to offer that may serve as channels of love and strength to all who find themselves in need of support. We can trust that whatever we offer, God will use our gifts to bring a future with hope.

 

Through the ministries of this church, and through the ministries supported by Week of Compassion, we have the opportunity to be part of the hopeful future God is already bringing about. Imagine what the future will be like when we join to invest in the growth God promises to bring. We invite you to give generously to Week of Compassion today, believing in the future growth God brings when we work, plant, and build together.

 

Offertory Prayer

Almighty God, giver of every good and perfect gift, teach us to give to you all that we have and all that we are, that we may praise you not with our words only, but with our whole lives.

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

We offer these gifts, O God of all people, in the hope and trust that You will use them to bring healing and hope where there is need. Where natural disaster has befallen, may these gifts help build new life. Where refugees seek safety from violence and fear, may these gifts enable caring and welcoming hearts and hands. Where hatred sullies Your hope for your human family, may our gifts be a sign and instrument of reconciliation. Thank you, God, for the privilege of this offering. May it indeed do more than we can imagine! In the name of Jesus Christ and for the sake of this world which He loves. Amen.

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

God of Abundance, bless the investments that we commit to your work this day that our efforts might serve the future thriving of this world you so love. Amen.

 

Invitation to the Table

Friends, God prepares a feast for you and for all people; a feast of good things, a feast of peace. Come and taste. Eat and be filled. Drink deep and never thirst again.

 

OR

Come alive, dear friends, at the sound of Christ’s challenge to love beyond the convenient ways that people love in this world. We are called to give beyond reasonable expectations, and to love beyond those who find it easy to love us in return. This is the faith we profess whenever we come to the Table of Christ – a faith that owns the compassionate Christ as the one we would follow – the one who eats and drinks with sinners, still today, as he asks even us to come and receive the gifts that bring life. May our celebration of this bread broken and cup poured out be for us the fulfillment of Christ’s promise to make possible the most unlikely scenario of all: the coming of all God’s children to eat and drink at the Table of God in unity and in peace.

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org (may be offered by a single voice)

L: Dear co-workers in God’s service, we are called to the feast prepared by Christ.

P: We come tired and hopeful. We come with laughter and tears. We come broken and blessed. We come to taste God’s promise of a world made whole.    

L: At this table, we find rest. At this table, we find hope. At this table, we are moved to plant new seeds, to nourish fresh sprouts, and to join in bringing forth all the future growth God is bringing even now.

P: To this table, we bring our dreams, our prayers, and our gifts with hopeful trust in God’s holy healing power and love.

(may continue with or without the Words of Institution):

On the night that he knew would be his last with them, our Lord gathered his disciples for a feast. They had walked many miles together. They had known trials. They had seen wonders. They would soon need to trust that God is in the business of bringing hopeful futures from even the most painful endings.

 

So after dinner was over, he took the bread, blessed it, broke it, and shared it with them, saying take, eat, do this in remembrance of me. Then he also took the cup, blessed it, poured some wine into it, saying, “take, drink, do this in remembrance of me.”

 

Every time we gather at this Table, beloved co-workers in Christ, we too remember that God is in the business of bringing hopeful futures from even the most painful endings. We eat and drink today to be filled to the brim with that good news. We eat and drink this day to become holy channels of Christ’s hope and healing for ourselves and for our world.

 

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)

 

Eternal One, who cares for each one of us as if you had no one else to care for, and who cares for all of us even as you care for each, we come here because you have invited us. We recognize at the deepest levels of our beings that it is at this table that we are affirmed and made whole. Enable us to know now the presence of the Christ, the one who calls us to be family, the one in whose presence no other can be called a stranger. Forgive us that we have been hard of heart, that we have failed to acknowledge others as brothers and sisters. Enable us now to accept the fact that we are members of one another, that we are family with all of your creation, and that we are all loved by you. We pray these things in the name of the Christ who has called us to you. 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.

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org

God of the table, you feed the wild birds of the air with fruit-filled branches, And we flock to your table today longing to taste the hope and healing that you promise. Nourish us with the bread that sustains our souls in the face of suffering. Wash over us with holy streams of care, reviving our roots in you. Bless these gifts of bread and wine, that the future you long for might burst into bloom in our hearts and in our world.

 

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…’

 

MORE…

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 2019. Calendar for 2020

Sun 1 Dec 2019. CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2019-20. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2019. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2019 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2019 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2019.

 

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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Thanksgiving Day (USA)

 

Nov. 28

 

This ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in West Virginia is supported by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund.

 

Support Our Work … read how you can help keep lifeinliturgy.org available for use without subscription charges.

 

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:

Deuteronomy 26:1-11
Psalm 100
Philippians 4:4-9
John 6:25-35

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

717-Let all things now living

718- Come, ye thankful people, come,

276-We gather together

713-God of our life

725-God of the ages

711 – O Day of peace that dimly shines

429-You satisfy the hungry heart

 

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 100 is on p. 752

 

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 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

L: Let us proclaim a day of thanksgiving among ourselves, people of God.

P: This is a day of gratitude for the one who has promised to gather his flock, and bring us back into the fold where fruitful life may thrive. 

L: This is the one who is the Bread that comes down from heaven, that all may eat and live.

P: In Jesus Christ, we have life abundant.  Let us come to God’s feast with great thanksgiving and praise!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

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…”)

 

OR

Lifegiving 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 receive from your hand the Bread of Life, 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…”)

OR

O God, we hunger. We hunger for food. We hunger for relationship. We hunger for meaning in life. We hunger to make a difference. We hunger to be loved and to love. Thank you for Jesus who brings these things to us when we abide in him. Help us be open to the ways that the bread and the cup feed us, draw us close to him and to one another, bring love alive in us, and empower us to bear the fruit of love for the world, (for we pray as he taught us, saying, “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, in whose name we pray. Amen.

 

OR

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.

 

OR

(selected petitions below may be combined into one prayer; silence between each is encouraged)

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.

 

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

Almighty and gracious Father, we give you thanks for the

fruits of the earth in their season and for the labors of those

who harvest them. Make us, we pray, faithful stewards of

your great bounty, for the provision of our necessities and

the relief of all who are in need, to the glory of your Name;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with

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

 

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

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.

 

OR

Every time we come to the table, we are called to share in the offering. Christ’s body and blood was and is the offering of all offerings. That alone ought to appeal to us to give. Our giving will aid others in remembering him and give them the good news of life in Christ.

 

If our offering enables us to feed the hungry, give a drink of clean water to the thirsty, welcome a stranger, clothe the naked, visit the sick and imprisoned, then Christ himself will bless that offering. Hear him say, “Come, blessed ones of my Father, and inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, for as you did it for one of the least of my brothers and sisters, you did it for me.”

 

Offertory Prayer

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

The celebration of the Christian Year comes to an astounding and world-changing ending as we hear Christ’s call to live out the gospel of Jesus in real and practical ways. We are, in Christ, called to feed those who hunger, and by his self-giving example have learned just how costly that calling can be. All who would live among his flock are likewise called to remember the price that Christ our Sovereign Lord has paid for the salvation of the world, and to bring forth in this present age, in sign and in deed, the hope of life in God’s abundance. We show forth that abundance in this breaking of bread together, and look forward to his coming in final victory to be known as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Let us come to the Table of Christ in faith.

 

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)

 

Holy One, you speak to us in silence, yet all languages interpret you. Because you call us into this community, we are able to become a gift to one another. We pray for your Holy Spirit to descend upon us and upon these gifts of bread and wine, that in sharing them we may discern your presence which becomes our life. We thank you for your anointed one, Jesus, who through his life, crucifixion, death and resurrection lived fully the promise of redemptive wholeness that is available to all who would obey your creating will, and who now lives evermore to make intercession for us. We celebrate his gifts, we rejoice in your presence, loving God, now and always.

OR

Blessed are you, Lord our God, Sovereign of the Universe, for you provide for us this bread and wine – fruit of the earth and work of human hands. May it be for us the body and blood of Christ, as we who gather at your table seek to be strengthened by your presence. Fill us with the power of your Holy Spirit, that as those who would be numbered among your faithful children we may bring forth in our lives and our communities the manifest reality of your reign which has no end, for we pray in the name of 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…’

 

MORE…

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 2018. Calendar for 2019

Sun 2 Dec 2018. CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2018-19. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2018. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2018 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2018 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2018.

 

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.

 

Read Full Post »

Pentecost +22, Proper 27C

 

Nov. 10

 

This ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in West Virginia is supported by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund.

 

Support Our Work … read how you can help keep lifeinliturgy.org available for use without subscription charges.

 

Some suggestions from textweek.com for observance of Veterans Day

Suggestions for Observing Veterans’ Day in Worship, UMC GBOD.

“Remembrance Sunday Sermon,” PreacherRhetorica, 2012.

A Pacifist’s Dilemma on Veteran’s Day, J. Harader, Spacious Faith, 2012.

Memorial Day Call to Worship and Confession, The Fat Pastor, 2012.

Veterans Day Litany, The Fat Pastor, 2012.

Justice for Veterans and the Vulnerable, Bruce Epperly, Patheos, 2010.

Worship Offerings, thoughts, prayers, etc., Gord Waldie.

With Gratitude and Honor, UCC Worship Ways, 2008.

Remembrance Resources, Oremus, 2005.

Lectionary Hymns, Day of Mourning and Remembrance, National Association of Pastoral Musicians.

“We Remember All Those…” UCC, 2003.

Sermon and Worship Resources for Remembrance Sunday, (Ordinary 32B), Rev. Kim Gilliland.

Service of Remembrance and Healing for those who have experienced armed conflict, Worship Resources by Lisa Frenz, Mt. Carmel Lutheran Church, Portland, OR.

With Children: Remembrance Day Word Search, sermons4kids.com.

 

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:

Haggai 1:15b-2:9 or Job 19:23-27a
Psalm 145:1-5, 17-21 or Psalm 98 or Psalm 17:1-9
2 Thessalonians 2:1-5, 13-17
Luke 20:27-38

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

6-Sing praise to God who reigns above

464 – God of grace and God of glory

700-O Day of God draw nigh

472 – We Are living, we are dwelling

713-God of our life

390 – Lord of our highest love

66-God, whose giving knows no ending

517-Love Divine, all loves excelling

487-Help us accept each other

393-One bread, one body

422-Let us talents and tongues employ

 

More hymn suggestions, as well as helpful references for use of the arts in worship, are available from the United Church of Christ website.

 

Sung Psalm for the Day

Psalm 17 (vs. 1-4) – metrical setting by David T. Chafin

Lord, hear the just, regard my cry, my prayer from lips sincere;

Send your approval from on high, my righteousness make clear.

You tried my heart throughout the night and found it faithful in your sight.

Determined to in faithful speech and action now to live,

I choose the path of life for me, and all my self I give.

For help, O God, I pray and you will answer for your word is true.

You save from every terror those who trust in your command,

Protecting them from all their foes by your almighty hand.

Your lovingkindness let me see, your wondrous mercy, full and free.

O guard me well, as you would guard the apple of your eye;

While deadly foes are pressing in, to you, O God, I cry.

To me your rest and refuge bring, and shadow me within your wing.

C.H.M. (86.86.88) – “Auch jetzt macht Gott” is available online or in the UMC Hymnal

 

Hymn of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2019, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Luke 20:27-38

God of Abraham and Isaac,

God of Jacob evermore:

be the lode of pure salvation,

all the purging sanctity.

Then, O God of all the living,

enter cleanly our delight

that in satisfaction nearly

we acquaint ourselves with joy.

God of the living, lure us free,

snatched in love to victory.

Evermore are we encouraged

by the wonder we adore.

Lord our God, our deepest longing,

draw us to your praise above

for the awe that joy abounding

seethes in majesty divine.

In oblation, heart’s rejoicing,

we attain your fertile care.

All is open that we see, Lord,

all is free in your delight.

Gather freshly our intent, Lord,

that we further our release,

our intending satisfaction

in your living majesty.

8.7.8.7.D   Suggested tune: Burythorpe

 

OR On Job 19:23-27a

Oh, words inscribed would answer so,

echo the passion I survive.

For in the reading of this text

the true Redeemer would confess.

In all, the standard of the flesh

the stumbling on the ground I thresh

becomes the witness of renown,

the one I will to see alone.

Becoming in this mystery

the font of possibility,

I answer warily the Lord

whom I confess and do adore.

The vision of delight becomes

the opening of savor won,

the thriving of the mystery

that spans the world before my eyes.

O word that’s written to be seen,

appear upon this holy ground

and satisfy for anger sight

to sanctify the willing heart.

LM   Suggested tune: Deep Harmony

 

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 98 is available on p. 750 or see Psalm 17 lyrics above

 

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

(adapted by the editor from the UCC)

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

L: The coming of our Lord is a sure thing.

P: It will be one which shakes heaven and earth, though our eyes and ears may not perceive it. 

L: How might the Lord come to us today?  In word?  In sign?  In this community?

P: We will hold fast to the sure presence of God, and join in praise as one people.

 

OR

L: Thank the Lord with all your heart, in the gathered assembly of God’s people.

P: Mighty are the deeds of the Lord; great are the God’s works,

     studied by all who have pleasure in them.

L: Holy and awesome is God’s name!

To worship the Lord is the highest wisdom; those who do so know all that is good.

P: God’s praises will last forever.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

You are holy, O Lord our Creator and God, giving us mercies beyond number.  You are holy, O Savior Jesus Christ, loving and setting us free.  You are holy, O Spirit of truth and peace, leading us in ways that are right.  O holy eternal Trinity, we praise you for ever and ever. (And we join the prayer of Christ who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

You who have created us and sustain us: 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…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

(Prayers from the Book of Common Order, Church of Scotland, on oremus.org)

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 Saviour. 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*

Collect

 

Almighty Father,

whose will is to restore all things

in your beloved Son, the King of all:

govern the hearts and minds of those in authority,

and bring the families of the nations,

divided and torn apart by the ravages of sin,

to be subject to his just and gentle rule;

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

God of peace,

whose Son Jesus Christ proclaimed the kingdom

and restored the broken to wholeness of life:

look with compassion on the anguish of the world,

and by your healing power

make whole both people and nations;

through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

 

Additional Collect

 

God, our refuge and strength,

bring near the day when wars shall cease

and poverty and pain shall end,

that earth may know the peace of heaven

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

O God, whose blessed Son came into the world that he might

destroy the works of the devil and make us children of God

and heirs of eternal life: Grant that, having this hope, we may

purify ourselves as he is pure; that, when he comes again

with power and great glory, we may be made like him in his

eternal and glorious kingdom; where he lives and reigns with

you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Collect of the Day from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2019, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Luke 20:27-38

 

You know, O God, how we insist

to measure heaven in the dust.

Begin afresh in us, O God, that we may yet

take measure of our dust by heaven’s boon.

Herein Lord God, do we persist

and register your ways.

God of the living, to you is all our life this day.

 

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

God has prepared a rich feast for those who desire to receive it – a coming reign of justice and peace, a life of promise without fear, a world made new. We participate in that blessed life to come, even today with our tithes and offerings, enabling Christ’s church to make a way in the world for the promises of God to be fulfilled.  Let us bring forth our gifts and offer our lives anew to God.

 

Offertory Prayer

Here, O God, your children offer to you the substance of our lives and labors.  We come humbly, recognizing that all that we are and all that we have belong to you; and we come boldly, recognizing that you alone have moved us to share of our substance for the sake of others.  Take and us these gifts and our lives, limited though they may be, for your great work for the sake of the future of your world. Amen.

 

OR

Generous God, our lives are renewed as we remember your goodness. You have made us in your image and placed in our hearts the memory of your love made flesh in Jesus Christ. That memory calls us to give and to embrace your world as we offer these gifts. May our lives invested through these offerings create a new reality and extend your grace in remembrance of Jesus, in whose name we pray.

 

Invitation to the Table

Christ invites to this Table all who seek to know God and to walk in peace with God and their neighbor.  It is a place of welcome for you, all of you, with great faith and with little faith.  It is the faith of Christ which matters, and it is the faith of Christ which shall sustain us til the end of the age.

 

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)

 

  1. We praise you, O God, for your promised presence with us as we gather in your name.  We thank you for all the good gifts of life, and for the gift of this Table which offers your love for us in real bread, broken and shared.  Bless now, we pray, this bread which we offer to you.  May it be for us the body of Christ, that we might be remade as his body in the world, readied for faithful service.
  2. Send down the power of your Holy Spirit, O God, upon us gathered here, and upon these gifts.  As the cup of salvation is offered to us once again by the resurrected Christ, may we who drink of it be refreshed and renewed in his Spirit, so that all of our lives may glorify you in the Church and in the world forever.

 

OR

Giver of life, receive this offering of our praise as we break this bread and bless this cup. Send your Spirit forth to dwell within them and so within us as we receive them. Open us to the wonder of new life in your presence, as we renew our faith at this your Table. We give you thanks and praise in the name and spirit of Jesus the Christ.  

 

OR

Blessed are you, Lord our God; you bring forth bread from the earth, and wine in its season. Send your power and strength to us, Lord, as we gather here in love for you, and upon these gifts of bread and wine. Make them to be for us the body and blood of Christ, that we might be his true body, going about his work in our time and place; that in all things all glory might be given to you, Almighty God, now and forever.

 

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…’

 

MORE…

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 2018. Calendar for 2019

Sun 2 Dec 2018. CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2018-19. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2018. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2018 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2018 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2018.

 

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.

 

Read Full Post »

Pentecost +17, Proper 22C

 

Oct. 6

 

Worldwide Communion Sunday

At time of publication, I was unable to locate any new materials on the observance, but encourage you to take note of these items, and check back later for updates of the pages:

 

http://www.ministrymatters.com

http://www.jordanrimmer.com/world-communion-sunday-ideas-and-liturgy/

http://www.textweek.com/festivals/worldcommunion.htm

 

This ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in West Virginia is supported by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund.

 

Support Our Work … read how you can help keep lifeinliturgy.org available for use without subscription charges.

 

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

 

Lamentations 1:1-6; Lamentations 3:19-26 or Habakkuk 1:1-4; 2:1-4
Psalm 137 or Psalm 37:1-9
2 Timothy 1:1-14
Luke 17:5-10

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

21-Let the whole creation cry

277 – Christians, we have met to worship

461-Lord, whose love through humble service

453-Called as partners in Christ’s service

422-Let us talents and tongues employ

 

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 (© 2019, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On 2 Timothy 1:1-14

 

All praise within this suffering,

all joy abounding ever

be full and overfull, my Lord,

to bear God’s holy bounty.

With boldness and alacrity,

we rise, not timid in your eyes

but graced with strength and mercy.

 

For you, O God, have given us

abundance for rejoicing,

the qualities of holy love,

the banter of the songs of praise.

In this, O God, do we rejoice,

exulting in your majesty,

the flourish of your kindling.

 

Indeed, O Master of us all,

delight of every nation,

we come in beating mystery,

the suffering of wonder.

Alive and given unto grace,

we, O our God, bring joy to face.

For Holy Spirit dwells here.

 

8.7.8.7.8.8.7          Suggested tune: Luther’s Hymn

 

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  37 is adapted in Call to Worship below.

 

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   

(adapted by the editor from Psalm 37)

L: Trust in the LORD, and do good.

P:  So we will live in the land, and enjoy security.

L:  Take delight in the LORD.

P:  God will give us the desires of our hearts.

L:  Commit your way to the LORD.

P:  We will trust in God, and he will act, making our lives shine like the light, and the justice of our cause like the noonday.

 

OR

adapted from Worship Ways, UCC

L: As we gather this morning, we remember our sisters and brothers around the world:

P:  From above and below the equator, from every time zone around the globe, Christ invites us all to join this Holy Feast.  

L: As today’s sunlight inches across land and sea, Christians gather to celebrate their place in God’s family.

P: All are invited and all are welcome.  Come, for the meal is ready!

 

OR

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.

 

OR

L: Let us come to Christ, the living Bread, who fills the hungry with good things.

P:  We rejoice in God’s provisions, abundant and freely given!

L: Let us come to Christ, Fount of all mercy, who quenches our thirst for life eternal.

P:  We celebrate God’s well-spring of grace and goodness, and come ready to drink to the fill!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

from The Jubilee Fund

Omnipotent God, who has ruled throughout the ages, we come humbly to your mountaintop to offer our worship, and to hear a word from you.  Help us this day to resolve to keep your commandments.  Help us to follow in your way.  Guide our steps and draw near to us in this time of worship; that all may know you are our God, and we, are your people, and we pray in the name of Christ  (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

God who gathers into one all who yearn to feast with you, and makes that celebration beam with a brightness that can overcome any gloom, reveal to us anew the calling you have placed upon your faithful people: to serve the world with the tender compassion and peaceful justice of Jesus the Christ, in whose name we gather expectantly, and in whose name we pray (even as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

We ask, Lord, that during this hour you will lead us in your way, you will teach us your truth, and you will share with us your very life, so that your name may be honored, our lives may be enriched, and our world, through us, may be blessed. We offer our prayers in the name of Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

from ministrymatters.com

Holy Mystery, Protector of the faithful, glorious Spirit of wonder, Bread of heaven, you have made us a little lower than the angels and crowned us with glory and honor. You have called us to be your witnesses, to proclaim the good news in good times and in bad. Sanctify us and help us see ourselves in you, the living body of the risen Christ, broken and poured out to feed a hungry world. (This we pray as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

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

God of mercy and of love, you have called us to live in communion with all of your created world.  Give us a new appreciation for the diversity of creation, and for the people of our world whom you love with an everlasting love.  Help us to serve the needs of all who are suffering, sick, lonely, and broken by the struggles of life with the compassion and joy of true servants of Christ.

 

Give us grace to work with passion for the unity of your Church throughout the world, and to take our place among its people without expectation of reward, beyond the smile of your approval.  May our ministries be anchored in your love of justice and peace, and may all who serve be encouraged by the promise of Christ’s presence with us.  Make of us a more obedient people, gladly giving what we have received from your faithful hand.

 

Hear our prayers, O Lord, for those whose lives are closely linked with our own: (names), whose needs we entrust to you along with our own needs. (silence)

 

Grant, O Lord, that we might grow in grace and in love for you as we commend ourselves to your care and guidance.  Take us by the hand, O God, and by your Holy Spirit lead us to fulfill your calling in our lives through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

O Lord, we beseech you mercifully to hear the prayers

of your people who call upon you;

and grant that they may both perceive and know

what things they ought to do,

and also may have grace and power faithfully to fulfil them;

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

 

Almighty God,

you have taught us through your Son

that love is the fulfilling of the law:

grant that we may love you with our whole heart

and our neighbours as ourselves;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Lord of creation,

whose glory is around and within us:

open our eyes to your wonders,

that we may serve you with reverence

and know your peace at our lives’ end,

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to

hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire

or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy,

forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid,

and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy

to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus

Christ our Savior; 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 (© 2019, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Luke 17:5-10

 

Stir us, O God, with deeply seething faith

that, as a portion like a mustard seed

enlivens us in heart and soul,

we may discover order transplanted in the sea,

where your creative love becomes

the means to nurture grace.

 

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

Across the world and throughout all time, the Church has never ceased to offer praise to God.  Today, we take our place among the multitudes who worship, join in prayer for the world, and seek the gift of Communion in the Holy Spirit at the sacred Table of the Lord.  At the invitation of Christ, we come ready to receive, and to give; to be served, and to serve. May our giving reflect our gratitude for the gift of God in Jesus Christ, who has given all for the sake of the world.

 

OR

Today is World Communion Sunday.  One day a year, all Christians commit themselves to celebrating Communion together.  And yet in most places, we look around and realize we are still so very far apart.  Sadly, it is still the rare congregation which is truly mixed in age, race, background and belief.  We tend to gather and worship with our own.  Each year, on World Communion Sunday, as we remember the unity of the body of Christ, we also receive the Reconciliation Special Offering.  This offering seeks to under the damage of years of separation.  Years of not only separate, but unequal.  This offering seeks projects which heal and bring together the whole body of Christ.  Today as you bring your tithes for the work of this church, please consider also bringing an offering for the Reconciliation Mission.  Help us plants seeds of hope in Christ’s Name.  from The Jubilee Fund

 

Offertory Prayer

God of all people.  We come this day to bring our tithes and offerings before you.  We give them with the prayer that these gifts will truly bless others.  We bring them not looking out for our own interests, but for others.  Multiply and use these gifts that all your children may know the confidence and peace which comes through your abiding love.  Amen.  from The Jubilee Fund

 

OR

Holy Giver of all that we need, you have filled our hearts with joy and our hands with overflowing abundance. With thanks and joy, we bring these gifts, offering ourselves in communion with you and with all creation. Amen.  from ministrymatters.com

 

Invitation to the Table

It is Worldwide Communion Sunday: The day when all Christians gather around the table.  For us Disciples, it is simultaneously an ordinary day since we do this every Sunday; and a special day because it speaks to our plea for Christian Unity.  There is reassurance in knowing that for all of our divisions on doctrine, interpretation, and practice, today we are one body around this one table.  Yet there is sadness in knowing how much work is still to be done.  As we celebrate this feast of hope and remembrance today, let us instead focus on the great truth: All Christians are seeking to produce fruits for the kingdom of God, and have truly embraced Christ as the Cornerstone.  We may not have agreed on the structure, but our foundation together is sure.  Let us celebrate today knowing that throughout the world; wherever Christians are gathered.  Christ is remembered, Christ is celebrated, and Christ is glorified.  from The Jubilee Fund

 

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)

  1. Loving God, whose care for all you have made extends beyond the boundaries of race and nation, beyond place and pride, we give you thanks for the gift of this bread, which is the offering of your body for us and for the life of the world.  Send your Spirit upon it, and upon us to open our eyes to the realities expressed within this act of eating and drinking together, and our ears to your voice, ever calling us to share the gifts which we have been given.  [This we pray through Christ our Lord.]

 

  1. Your lovingkindness is forever, O God, and your faithfulness to all generations.  As we give thanks for the gift of this chalice, the new and everlasting covenant of Christ’s blood, we pray that your Spirit might be poured out in our lives, that we may know the fullness of your grace, and be refreshed to live in holiness and hospitality, even as Christ has welcomed us and welcomed all to your feast of joy.

 

OR

O God, who calls for us to go at the bidding of your word, and to do the work to which you have called us, we gather at your table as a people yearning to receive your loving, gracious word of forgiveness. Receive us as we break the bread which Christ has offered to be for us his body. And receive us as we drink the cup which he has blessed to be his blood. May all who come at your bidding be fed, renewed, and empowered to serve as you would have us to serve, through the grace of Christ our Lord.

 

OR

God who gives us bread for the journey, you have come to walk among us in the person of your Son Jesus Christ. The bread that we break as we gather at your table is for us his body, and the cup his blood. Pour out your spirit upon us gathered here out of love for you, and upon these gifts of bread and wine. May we who receive them be transformed by your power at work within and among us, that all your world may have bread enough and more.

 

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…’

 

MORE…

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 2018.  Calendar for 2019

Sun 2 Dec 2018. CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2018-19. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2018. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2018 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2018 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2018.

 

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.

 

Read Full Post »

Pentecost +3, Proper 8C

 

June 30

 

This ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in West Virginia is supported by your gifts to Disciples Mission Fund.

 

Support Our Work … read how you can help keep lifeinliturgy.org available for use without subscription charges.

 

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:

2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14 or 1 Kings 19:15-16, 19-21
Psalm 77:1-2, 11-20 or Psalm 16
Galatians 5:1, 13-25
Luke 9:51-62

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

For observance of Independence Day (U.S.), note indices of the hymnal.

64-We sing your mighty power, O God

450-God the Spirit, guide and guardian

81-Let the whole creation cry

257-There’s a spirit in the air

357-We call ourselves Disciples

602-O Master, let me walk with thee

665-Where cross the crowded ways of life

398-Be known to us in breaking bread

400-When you do this, remember me

405-In memory of the Savior’s love

 

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 (© 2019, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Luke 9:51-62

 

Christ in the days of his intent,

when time had grown completely right,

set firmly, flint-like, his fair face

to journey to Jerusalem.

 

He takes the step in pilgrimage

with life laid naked in his sight

and brings along his chosen band

to savor as new pilgrims must.

 

With all distresses set aside,

with rude deflection at a nod,

the Savior in this pilgrimage

sets retribution from all sight.

 

Immediate is his desire,

the Lord set to Jerusalem,

the followers who set aside

whatever may project their pride.

 

O Lord, we journey unto you,

accept the kingdom in your ways

and follow restlessly along

to learn your pilgrim’s constancy.

 

LM            Suggested tune: O Amor Quam Ecstaticus

 

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 16:5-11 on p. 730  

 

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 has called us onto the road of discipleship. Often that road has been stony and hard. Sometimes we have stumbled and even fallen.

P: But God has been our friend and our guide. We have no cause to be alarmed. God is faithful to us, even when we are faithless.

L: Today we rejoice in God’s faithful love, and together ask for strength and signs of hope and life.

P: And again we are drawn together to celebrate the life that is ours in Christ Jesus. Thanks be to God!

 

OR

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 is for you and for all people everywhere.

P:   May we be renewed in the refreshing Spirit of the living Christ, and share in the joy of life with God.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: Throughout the ages, disciples have said, “I will follow you wherever you go.”
P: Lord, give us the freedom to follow you in the ways of love.
L: We come from busy homes, filled with little time to consider Christ in our lives.
P: Lord, give us the strength to follow you in the ways of peace.
L: In times of struggle, we look to God for help.
P: Lord, give us the opportunity to follow you in the ways of kindness.
L: Today, we celebrate life in the Spirit, showing us the joy of following Christ.
P: May God give us the patience to follow faithfully in Christ’s path.  

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: Great is our God and greatly to be praised!
P: The whole earth reflects God’s power and might.
L: When we recall the wonders of God’s creation.
P: We rejoice at the awesome complexity of it all.
L: God has brought us up from fear to hope.
P: Let us worship and praise God for all God’s faithfulness.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Following Jesus is difficult. So many things have laid claim to our lives.
P: We don’t know if we can let go and truly follow him.
L: Lord, search our hearts and speak to our spirits. Encourage us to freely follow you.
P: Help us to be dependable disciples, joyfully proclaiming your transforming power and love.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: We are called together this day to praise God.
P: We ask that God will put us in pathways to service to others.
L: The Lord will walk with us as we faithfully witness to Christ’s love.
P: Open our hearts, Lord, to receive your words and will.
L: Come, let us worship God!
P: Let us sing our praises to God our Redeemer and Healer.

 

OR  for Independence Day

L: We have come to sing, rejoicing in the good that walks this land by day.

P: We have come to be silent, repenting of the evil that stalks it by night. 

L: We have come to this place because here we are reminded that God is our Creator and our only hope in the world.

P: Here we pledge our loyalty to God, so that our citizenship might be more responsible, our nation more just and humble, and our world more at peace.

   may add:

L: Let us celebrate our freedoms as people of faith, as well as conscience.

P: Praise the Lord!

 

OR for Independence Day from ministrymatters.com

L: In the midst of celebration, we are also in sorrow.

P: Lord, hear our cries.

L: For all those who have given their lives so that we may have our freedom,

P: Lord, hear our cries.

L: For all those who struggle and strive against great difficulties,

P: Lord, hear our cries.

L: We praise God who has blessed us with freedom and peace.

P: Let our lives be a blessing to others as we serve God in this world.  

 

OR for Independence Day, adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: Independence Day is this week.

P: We celebrate a time when our country declared its independence from foreign domination.

L: But many things dominate our hearts: fear, apathy, intolerance, anger.

P: May God hear our celebrations, but also our cries for help.

L: Remember how God has blessed you, and be a blessing to others.

P: May God keep our hearts and minds open to the word and the way of faithfulness.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Most Holy God, we await the touch of your Spirit with eagerness. We ask that you enter the lives of each one of us today, refreshing and renewing and healing us with the power of your loving Spirit, so that we may live with purpose, enthusiasm, and courage in the way of Jesus our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Most gracious and loving God, you fill our hearts with praise for renewed life in Christ Jesus. Fill our minds with meditations which are noble and true, that we may be strengthened in our union with Him, for we offer our prayers and our worship in his name (for we pray as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Lord, we want to follow you whoever you lead. Reach out to us this day, stirring our souls and spirits with the winds of your power that we may faithfully be your disciples. For we ask this in Jesus’ name (praying as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR for Independence Day

We have come to sing, rejoicing in the good that walks this land by day.  We have come to be silent, repenting of the evil that stalks it by night.  We have come to this place because here we are reminded that you are both our creator and our conscience.  Here all our loyalties are put in their proper place, ordered behind our allegiance to you.  Be with us in our celebration and our confession, that our citizenship might become more responsible, our nation more humble, and our world more dependable.  In the name of Christ we pray (as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

for Independence Day:

Almighty God, in your eyes a nation is neither favored nor foreign.  You are the sole creator and sovereign judge of us all.  We pray that our nation would not dare approach you as if you were our patron and protector.  Yet we boldly approach you as our God and Savior, seeking the assurance of your presence and the guidance of your Spirit.  Teach us to love our land in a way that will help others love theirs.  Lead us in the knowledge that love of country can coexist with love for the world.

 

We pray for your world and its peoples.  Especially we lift to you those who are in need, those who are suffering, those whose lives are subject to the whims of others.  Those people are not just in far away places, but are ever so near.

 

We pray for the sick and the dying, for those whose lives are filled with hope at the promise of healing and wholeness, and for those who feel cut off from all promise.  With gratitude, we trust your promises, and we hold before you those whose lives are closely linked with our own, and our own needs…

 

Take our prayers for greatness, O God, and turn them into prayers for goodness.  Take our prayers for success and turn them into prayers of service.  So that we in all things might glorify you our sovereign God, even as we honor you in Christ, in whose name we pray.  Amen.

 

OR for Independence Day

Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on us.  Open our hearts to a far-reaching compassion that extends around the world, to the most obscure corners of this troubled planet.  Let us remember you are God of all people: the beautiful and the homely; the well-dressed and the naked; the rich & the hungry; the ones who speak loudly and those who barely utter a word; the ones who have bodies of steel and those whose bodies are broken and bent; the very young and the very old.  God of time and space, give us time to grow up in your spirit; give us room to grow up in our faith so that our ears may hear the knock at the door, the cry for help, the whimper of weakness, the sigh of loneliness and so our hands will reach out with the love of your Son.  Teach us the meaning of this kind of love which knows no boundary and no second thoughts but springs forth like a fountain.  And may the source of this love remember us as we remember him in our responses of faithfulness.  Amen

 

OR adapted as an beginning of intercessions, from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

For our country, O God, we give thanks. For our immigrant ancestors who came here across an ocean that seemed so wide; for their years of struggle against obstacles that we have never faced; for the sacrifices of others who built our country and defended it against all the things that would go wrong; for opportunities in our own lifetimes to do something that would really make a difference; for a place in which to raise a family, to seek to do well in our work, to worship you in freedom, and to cherish the hopes and dreams for the years ahead—for these and for all, O God, we are deeply thankful.

 

OR adapted as an beginning of intercessions, from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

God of Celebrations and Sorrows, we will wave the flag this week and our hearts beat with pride at the stirring sounds of the bands. Fireworks emblazon the skies, and families gather for celebrations. But in too many places there is little to celebrate. Our spirits ache for people both far and near who suffer and struggle just to have the basic necessities of life, while we live in abundance. Forgive us when our celebration clouds the needs of others. It is important for us to celebrate, but we must never forget that you have given us a ministry and mission to perform here and now. Help us be mindful of the many ways in which we can reach out to others. By our attitudes and our actions, may we be those who would bring hope, comfort, healing, and peace in the name of Christ.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

Patient and Loving God, we are looking toward a national holiday in which we celebrate freedom and independence. We will hear the mighty strains of marching bands and see the banners unfurled. May our hearts be moved by the events. And yet may we hear your call to us to remember that it is you who gives true independence and hope in your healing and restoring love.

 

The oppression of disease, poverty, terrorism pours into our lives and lays claim to our spirits. We feel as though we are again in bondage. Free us, O Lord. Open our hearts to receive your healing words of comfort and hope. Enable us to be people who offer compassion in the presence of sorrow; hope in the presence of desolation; light in the presence of darkness.

 

Walk with us and strengthen us. Give us spirits of eagerness to serve and witness to your love. As we have brought names of those near and dear to us to this day, asking your healing mercies and blessings, help us to remember that we stand in need of those blessings as well. Help us to receive the blessings and to use the gifts which we have been given to serve you in all that we say, think, and do. This we pray in the one who brings us the freedom of life in your Spirit, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com (for week of Independence Day)

What a weekend it is, Lord. It is time to gather and celebrate, time to reflect on the blessings of the freedoms that have been so sorely fought for and won, time to commit ourselves to offering the freedoms we cherish to others. We have gathered here in the midst of the business of the summer season to seek your will, to find peace and directions for our lives.

 

Bless us, O Lord, with wisdom tempered with compassion. Remind us that we have such freedom because others who have gone before have stood for principles of hope. Do not let our pride of country overwhelm the needs that still abound within our walls and our land. Where there is hatred, help us to bring your words of love. Where there are injustices, help us to correct unjust systems and become advocates for the voiceless and powerless. Where there is apathy, empower us to bring the good news of your gracious transforming love. Be with us this day and all our days as we seek to follow you. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

 

OR

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 as individual disciples and as a 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.

 

OR

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

In the dry times of life, O God, as well as the fresh summer mornings, your Spirit comes to us with soul-quenching refreshment. Our longings for your help grow languid and tiresome in those harsher days, and we seek your strength to remind us, again and again, to trust in you, to drink deeply of the life you give, and to keep our hope keenly focused on the future you have promised. Yours is a future of a world made right, of bodies made whole, of relationships healed, of abiding peace and justice. Help us to seek it, to pray for it, to work for it, even as we pray for those troubles close to home and far away which burden our hearts this day.

 

We pray for those whose lives are endangered by war and unrest, those who struggle for justice, and those who seek after peace. We pray for the suffering, the imprisoned, the hungry, homeless poor. We pray for the sick and those who tend to their needs, who bring a cup of cold water to those who are thirsty. Hear our prayers, gracious God, for those we have named this day, ________________, and for those we name in the silence of our hearts.

 

Be near to us, Lord, and refresh our spirits as we gather again at your table. May we carry from this place a sure faith and a confidence in your wellspring of goodness, made known to us in Jesus the Christ in whose name we pray. Amen.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Lord, you have taught us

that all our doings without love are nothing worth:

send your Holy Spirit

and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of love,

the true bond of peace and of all virtues,

without which whoever lives is counted dead before you.

Grant this for your only Son Jesus Christ’s sake,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Loving Father,

we thank you for feeding us at the supper of your Son:

sustain us with your Spirit,

that we may serve you here on earth

until our joy is complete in heaven,

and we share in the eternal banquet

with Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Faithful Creator,

whose mercy never fails:

deepen our faithfulness to you

and to your living Word,

Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Almighty God, you have built your Church upon the

foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself

being the chief cornerstone: Grant us so to be joined together

in unity of spirit by their teaching, that we may be made a

holy temple acceptable to you; 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 (© 2019, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Luke 9:51-62

 

Set surely there, O Lord our God,

the face unto Jerusalem,

the face unto the flourishing of love

intensely joyed by your design,

confronting life too deeply now.

We know the fever in the face

as we begin where many fade.

Lead us in lope, forgiveness, peace

unto the moment of the cross.

 

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

Every time we come to the table, we are called to share in the offering. Christ’s body and blood was and is the offering of all offerings. That alone ought to appeal to us to give. Our giving will aid others in remembering him and give them the good news of life in Christ.

 

If our offering enables us to feed the hungry, give a drink of clean water to the thirsty, welcome a stranger, clothe the naked, visit the sick and imprisoned, then Christ himself will bless that offering. Hear him say, “Come, blessed ones of my Father, and inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, for as you did it for one of the least of my brothers and sisters, you did it for me.”

 

OR

Love is a powerful force in the world, stronger than hatred or fear or greed. The love of Jesus inspires us and makes us able to share generously the gifts we have received from God. Our gifts are one way that we love one another and the world around us, the world God loves.  Let us be as generous with our giving as our God has been with love, with mercy, and with gifts poured into our lives.

 

Offertory Prayer

Almighty God, giver of every good and perfect gift, teach us to give to you all that we have and all that we are, that we may praise you not with our words only, but with our whole lives.

 

OR

We give you thanks, most gracious God, for the beauty of earth and sky and sea; for the richness of mountains, plains and rivers; for the songs of birds and the loveliness of flowers. We praise you for these good gifts and pray that we may safeguard them for your children. Help us to use the gifts of work and service to your glory and grant that we may continue to grow in our grateful enjoyment of your abundance, to the honor and glory of your name. Amen.

 

Invitation to the Table

Christ invites to his supper all those who desire to be nourished by the food of God – this bread, his body; this cup, his blood. This is not an easy thing for us to grasp, and yet the simplest of all things – that in Christ Jesus, God was reconciling the world to God’s own self. As those who seek to grow in faithful discipleship, let us prepare our hearts to receive the gifts of God that are given for all the people of God.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

As the prophets of old knew, so may we also know: When we live by the Spirit, we will inherit the kingdom of God. The Spirit of love and forgiveness grows on the tree of life. This Spirit is available to all who seek it. Eat of this fruit, for it is the body of Christ, given for you.

 

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)

 

You, O God, have come to us in Christ Jesus to teach by example the way of faithful living. As Christ’s disciples, we pray that you would make yourself known to us now in these gifts of bread and wine. Send forth your Spirit upon us, and upon these gifts, that they may be for us the body and blood of Christ, so that we may indeed be the Body of Christ, cleansed by his blood, strengthened to love you and serve you in this world by serving others in the Spirit of him who was made perfect, Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Holy One, you speak to us in silence, yet all languages interpret you. Because you call us into this community, we are able to become a gift to one another. We pray for your Holy Spirit to descend upon us and upon these gifts of bread and wine, that in sharing them we may discern your presence which becomes our life. We thank you for your anointed one, Jesus, who through his life, crucifixion, death and resurrection lived fully the promise of redemptive wholeness that is available to all who would obey your creating will. We celebrate his gifts, we rejoice in your presence, loving God, now and always.

 

OR

  1. Loving and life-giving God, you have called us toward living faithfully by giving what we have received at your hand. Bless now this bread which we break, that as we receive it we may freely give ourselves as bread for the sake of all who hunger.
  2. Pour out your Spirit, O God, upon this wine which we bless, that as we receive it from your hand we may be ever ready to pour out our lives for the sake of others who thirst for you, in the spirit of Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Our God, you sent your brooding Spirit upon the deep when creation dawned upon your Word. You sent your brooding Spirit upon Mary when you came Incarnate in Jesus, your Word made flesh. You sent your brooding Spirit upon the Church when you created of us a people devoted in Jesus to your love in this time and in this place.

 

Send now your Spirit to brood on us that we may be full of your love as the waters cover the sea. As Jesus claimed bread and wine  to reveal himself anew, send now Holy Spirit upon this day that our communion  may build of us the Body of Christ, that our meeting with you may feed our souls on heaven’s food, that our joy may be complete in the love your give to us for one another.  Include us wholly in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

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…’

 

MORE…

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 2018.  Calendar for 2019

Sun 2 Dec 2018. CW* Almanac and Lectionary 2018-19. Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary. for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2018. Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2018 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries

using Almanac Maker. compilation © Simon Kershaw 2018 Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010-2018.

 

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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