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Trinity A

 

June 7

 

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):

 

Genesis 1:1 – 2:4a
Psalm 8

2 Corinthians 13:11-13

Matthew 28:16-20

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

651-God who stretched the spangled heavens

27-Come, thou Almighty King

22-All creatures of our God and King

4-Holy, Holy, Holy

450-Lord, you give the great commission

395-Seed, scattered and sown

409-I hunger and I thirst

 

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 Matthew 28:16-20

 

Together gathered near

to greet the Savior’s word,

we find him and behold

and worship him alone.

In wonder now

we stand in awe,

behold with joy

in mortal song.

 

And Jesus speaks to us

of his authority

that, gathered at his side,

we go to speak his life.

Disciples come;

apostles go,

baptizing all

and teaching well.

 

The call is to prepare

the many to obey,

to know of satiety,

so full of Christ’s desire.

And so we come

with surety

as he is here

for all the days.

 

6.6.6.6.4.4.4.4.        Suggested tune: Darwell’s 148th

 

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 8 – see p. 728  

 

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: By the calling of God’s Holy Spirit, 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 the love and life of God the Father, may we be renewed in the refreshing Holy Spirit in the presence of the living Christ.

 

OR  (adapted from John Birch, and posted on Faith and Worship. http://www.faithandworship.com/)

L: The blessing of Father, Spirit, Son, Holy Trinity, Three in One, be in our meeting and our greeting,

P: In the worship we share and the words of our prayer. 

L: The blessing of Father, Spirit, Son, Holy Trinity, Three in One, be in our living and our breathing,

P: That through our hearts and our words your truth may be heard.

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

L: We stand in the presence of God, Sovereign of the Universe, Lord of Hosts!

P: The whole earth is full of God’s glory!

L: God’s voice peals like thunder over the waters, the deserts, the forests!

P: The whole earth is full of God’s glory!

L: Do you hear the angels’ loud praise and feel the shaking of the very foundations of this place? God’s presence surrounds us, fills this very place!

P: Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts!

 

OR (from On Earth as in Heaven: Praying for Peace, MCC Peace Sunday Packet 2008)

L: In a world filled with violence and war,

P: we gather together to celebrate the promise of peace.

L: In a world filled with tyranny and oppression,

P: we gather together to celebrate the promise of justice for all.

L: In a world filled with hunger and greed,

P: we gather together to celebrate the promise of plenty for all.

L: Our hope is in the name of the Almighty God,

P: the Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer of heaven and earth.

 

OR

L: With fatherly care, God welcomes us to our shared experience of worship, fellowship, prayer, and praise.

P: We gather to be re-invigorated in our witness, and in the relationships that flow from life in Christ’s family. 

L: Together and individually, we will be cleansed and refreshed by the holy winds of God’s Spirit, as it blows around and within us.

P: New life and new blessings are ours, as we come together in unity to praise and glorify our Triune God. 

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

L: Welcome this day to a celebration of God’s magnificent creation!
P: Thanks be to God the Creator who has loaned to us such a beautiful planet.
L: Welcome this day to a recognition of God’s redeeming love!
P: Thanks to God the Redeemer who has given us God’s only Son as our Example and Teacher, Our Savior and Redeemer!
L: Welcome this day to the joy of God’s Holy Spirit of truth and power!
P: Thanks to God the Sustainer who walks with us every day, guiding and guarding our steps. 

 

OR (adapted from ministrymatters.com)

L: Welcome to this house of the Lord, here you will find healing for your souls.
P: We come with great joy, for we need this healing love.
L: Here you will also find a vision of peace for a broken world.
P: Help us to become part of that vision and be those who serve God with just hearts and kind spirits. 

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

(adapted from Arnold Ruddat  http://www.arnold.theruddats.com/)

O God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, in your name we are baptized, and in your fellowship we have found our home. We cling in faith to you, Father, for having loved us and sent your Son to die for our sins. We praise you, dear Jesus, for having redeemed us from our sins by giving yourself for us. We give thanks to you, Holy Spirit, for giving us faith and leading us toward your holiness. O Triune God, graciously enable us always to believe and obey, and to worship and confess you; Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer, one God, eternal and all-glorious forever.

 

OR

O God, we ask you to pour out your spirit on us. Help us serve you more cheerfully so we can serve our brothers and sisters. Cast out everything which breaks or hinders the growing bonds of love between us. Give us the determination to make progress so that all our lives we may seek after your holy and perfect will. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

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 now we are bold to pray as our Savior Christ has taught us, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

God of grace and glory, make your presence known to us as we worship this morning. Jesus our Christ, may your name be praised from the rising of the sun to the midnight hour, may your name always be honored among us. Spirit of holiness, breathe on us all and bind us in Christian love and servant hood. O God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, be known to us today. Transform our lives and our community into the image of Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray (as he taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR (from Oremus)

Almighty and eternal God, you have revealed yourself as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and live and reign in the perfect unity of love: hold us firm in this faith, that we may know you in all your ways and evermore rejoice in your eternal glory, who are three Persons yet one God, now and for ever (for with the confidence of your children we pray as Christ has taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR (on Psalm 8 from ministrymatters.com)

From the time you fashioned the heavens and the earth from a formless void, O God, your creative energy has done marvelous works, all around us.  May your creative Spirit be at work in our hearts and minds today as we worship you and, always, as we strive to live in obedience to your will. (This we pray in the name of Christ our Lord, who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR (adapted from ministrymatters.com)

Merciful and Just God, we gather here this morning, each of us with many concerns on our hearts. Our hearts are concerned with systems of injustice which strip people of their dignity and their very lives. Help us to be those who would seek peace with justice, who would fight for those who are oppressed, offer voices for the voiceless and dignity for all humankind. Be with us this day and guide our steps toward a more just world, for we pray in the name of Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Almighty God, maker of all, with joy we give thanks for all your goodness. We praise you for the love which has created and sustained us to this day, and for the gift of your Christ who brings us into covenant with you and with all your people of faith. Help us to treasure your gifts and to show our thankfulness by lives wholly given to your service.

 

We pray for your church whom you have redeemed by the sacrifice of Jesus. Give it pastors and ministers filled with your spirit, and strength to serve by the guidance of your word. Perfect it in love and in compassion, and establish it in the faith of your saints. Unite all your people that one holy church may bear witness to you and your glory.

 

We pray that you would move our nation toward the justice of your peace. Bless our national, state and local leaders to serve all people with integrity. Purge from us all hatred and prejudice, and build within us your love, that even in our dealings with the other nations of earth we may be servants of peace, truth and justice.

 

Bless our homes with the joy of your presence. Strengthen our covenants of family and of faith, that our children may grow into fullness of faith, that together we may show forth your praise in our world through deeds and words of love and compassion—especially with those who are alone and lonely.

Let your grace be seen in seed-time and harvest, in labor and business, in leisure and rest, in arts and culture of our people. May all who do work find fulfillment of their vocations, and all who are in need of work find the relief of new endeavors.

 

Comfort those who sorrow and are in need, sickness or adversity. Have mercy on those to whom death draws near. Bring consolation to those in mourning, and to all give your peace, for these and all our prayers we bring to you in the name of Jesus our Christ. Amen.

 

OR (adapted from Words for Worship.  Posted on the http://pilgrimwr.unitingchurch.org.au/ website)

To you, O God, be all glory, the One who visits us in three persons, the Holy Trinity of hope and love.  For there is no place which is without you, O God, and no time when you are not there. For you are the beginning and the end, the source of all that is in the wonder of universal life. And yet, you take us by the hand and lead us, as the life of Christ walks our human way and shows us that life is stronger than death.  In the Holy Spirit, we are gifted, again and again, and are called onwards toward a future in which we are surrounded with love and grace.

 

Hear our prayers for those of our world who do not realize the presence of your love in their lives, for those who are lonely or hurting, sick or oppressed, grieving or broken in spirit.  We pray that by our lives, we might bring into their presence an awareness of your love and your healing strength.

 

As we seek your guidance to be the church you have called us to be, may the power of your Spirit infuse us with the hope of fulfilling your will, and of working with you to transform your world, even as you transform our lives. May the peace that is ours in Christ Jesus be spread throughout this earth, and may your glory be shown by all that we do.  For we praise and worship you, O God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Indeed, there is no other God like you.  Amen.

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

God of Love and Mercy, you have given us stewardship to care for this wonderful planet and to care for our neighbors. We have been blessed with a variety of gifts and talents and you call us to use them to help others. Open our hearts today to ministries of peace with justice. Embolden us to become part of this great cloud of witnesses who were unafraid to be your disciples. We think of so many in this church and in our lives who have gone before us, braving the difficulties presented by life. We name them in our hearts before you, grateful for their example. (Silent prayer.) We also name in our hearts those people who are ill, who mourn, who feel lost and alone, those who are part of cultures of oppression and indignity. Help us to be those people who, by our example, will break those chains of poverty and burst the doors that imprison their spirits. Be with this church that it may be a true witness to Jesus Christ in all that we do.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty and everlasting God,

you have given us your servants grace,

by the confession of a true faith,

to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity

and in the power of the divine majesty to worship the Unity:

keep us steadfast in this faith,

that we may evermore be defended from all adversities;

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 and eternal God,

you have revealed yourself as Father, Son and Holy Spirit,

and live and reign in the perfect unity of love:

hold us firm in this faith,

that we may know you in all your ways

and evermore rejoice in your eternal glory,

who are three Persons yet one God,

now and for ever.

 

Additional Collect

 

Holy God,

faithful and unchanging:

enlarge our minds with the knowledge of your truth,

and draw us more deeply into the mystery of your love,

that we may truly worship you,

Father, Son and Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

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

Almighty and everlasting God, you have given to us

your servants grace, by the confession of a true faith, to

acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the

power of your divine Majesty to worship the Unity: Keep

us steadfast in this faith and worship, and bring us at last to

see you in your one and eternal glory, O Father; who with

the Son and the Holy Spirit live and reign, one God, for ever

and ever.  Amen.

 

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

Matthew 28:16-20

 

Upon the Galilean mount, O God,

did Jesus charge us as his own.

By that authority he owns

are we well sent to live and act and love

in your name, and in his,

and of the Holy Spirit.

Confirm in us your gifts, 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

All good things come from God, the giver of life. We are called as stewards of God’s gifts to share in fulfillment of God’s purposes for creation. As stewards of the kingdom of God, let us give from our abundance with thanksgiving.

 

Offertory Prayer

Holy one, your heart abounds with gifts. Receive this offering as a sign of our trust in you and our intention to live surrounded by your mercy, inspired by your Spirit, open to the joy of your presence, hospitable to one another, and generous toward your world.

 

OR

In these gifts, O God, we acclaim you as our Lord. May they be useful to you in bringing your kingdom into full flower through the ministries of your church, we pray in Christ’s name.

 

Invitation to the Table

It is into the name of the Holy Trinity that each of us are baptized.  And it is in the confession of God’s saving power in our lives that we continue to live in God’s presence.  At this holy Table, we again affirm that Jesus, the Son of God, is indeed the Messiah and Lord, and it is only in the power of the Holy Spirit that we can make that affirmation.  This is God’s feast, now, prepared 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

As the Spirit moved upon the face of the waters, God created the world and called it good. God breathed life into humans, each made in God’s image, and called them good as well.  God so loved us, in fact, that when we failed to stay in communion with God, the Son was sent into the world, so that all of us might find life abundant.  As we give thanks today for the gift of life, and for God’s sustaining presence in it, we have the opportunity to offer up ourselves to God afresh, and open our lives to the movement of God’s Spirit among us, so that we may be re-created to be what God has seen in us all along – truly good, and signs of God’s love for the whole 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)

 

Almighty God, as your Spirit moved upon the face of the waters, you have created the world and called it good. As you breathed life into human beings, you made each of us in your image. In the fullness of time, you sent your Son into the world that all the world might find life and life abundant in his fellowship. As we give thanks to you for the gift of life, and your sustaining presence in all of it, we offer up these gifts of bread and wine along with our very selves, that your Spirit might come upon them and upon us, that they may be for us the body and blood of your Son Jesus Christ, who living perfectly in your image offered himself up for us all. Through this breaking of bread and drinking of cup, may we who love you be conformed to his likeness, to follow you in the days which lie before us as creative, life-giving signs of your sustaining presence in our world.

 

OR

Eternal Three in One, you care for each one of us as if you had no one else to care for, and you care for all of us even as you care for each. We are 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 one 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.

 

OR

  1. Eternal God, you make yourself known to us in three Persons, yet bound together in one perfect communion of love. As we break this bread, may we come to a more perfect awareness of the unity of the Church you have called together as one through your Son Jesus Christ.
  2. Pour out your Holy Spirit upon us, gracious Lord, and upon these gifts of bread and wine. May we who drink from the cup Christ has offered be united with you and united with each other in the one body of Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Conclusion:  Through him, with him, and in him, in the power of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor be to you, O God, now and forever. Amen.

If not previously offered: “And now with the confidence of your children, we offer the prayer our Savior taught us, ‘Our Father…’

 

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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Pentecost A

 

May 31

 

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):

 

Acts 2:1-21 or Numbers 11:24-30
Psalm 104:24-34, 35b
1 Corinthians 12:3b-13 or Acts 2:1-21
John 20:19-23 or John 7:37-39

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

237-On Pentecost they gathered

241-Holy Spirit, truth divine

254-Breathe on me, Breath of God

236-Wind who makes all winds that blow

392-Draw us in the Spirit’s tether

404-A hymn of joy we sing

422-Let us talents and tongues employ

393-One Bread, one Body

 

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 Corinthians 12:3b-13

 

Jesus Christ is Lord, we know

for the Holy Spirit seeks us.

Holy Spirit, God on fire,

come, ignite us now forever.

In your stirring, Spirit, answer

that we echo love forever.

 

Gifts appear and gifts abound

all the bounty of our Sprit.

Service answers needs about

as the Holy Spirit bids us.

Deeds are meaning, well surprising,

all expect the Spirit’s breathing.

 

All one Spirit we abide

in the answer to our calling.

By one Spirit we’re baptized,

all one body of our Savior.

Come together as one body;

all imbibe one Spirit’s glory.

 

7.8.7.8.8.8.    Suggested tune: Liebster Jesu (Dessau)

 

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 104 – see p. 754 (vs. 1-13)  

 

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 the United Church of Christ)

L: The Spirit descends like a dove, bringing peace to unite the world in a just and caring community.

P: The Spirit comes like a breath, bringing life to renew the people of God.

L: The Spirit spreads like fire, bringing energy for witnessing to the love of God.

P: Spirit of the living God, come to us and transform our lives by your power

 

OR (adapted by the editor from portions of the Psalm of the day; given in two parts, either or both of which may be useful.)

I.

L: Bless the Lord, O my soul, who is clothed with honor and majesty,

P:  God set the earth on its foundations, so that it shall never be shaken.1 

     God waters the mountains, and satisfies the earth with plentiful fruit.

L: God causes the grass to grow for the cattle, and plants for people to use,

gives wine to gladden the human heart, oil to make the face shine,

and bread to strengthen the human heart.

P:  O Lord, how manifold are your works! The earth is full of your creatures.

 

II.

L:  When you send forth your spirit, O God, all things are created; and you renew the face of the ground.

P:  May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works.

L: I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;

P:  I will sing praise to my God while I have being.

L: May my meditation be pleasing to God, for I rejoice in the Lord.

P:  Bless the Lord, O my soul.  Praise the Lord!

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

L: Come, Holy Spirit. Inspire our hearts with your fiery presence!

P: Let your flame burn within us, stirring us to action.

L: Come, Holy Spirit. Energize our lives to work for God.

P: Let your wind of hope swirl around us, lifting and moving us from complacency.

L: Come, Holy Spirit. Pour your blessing on us.

P: Let your presence challenge us to proclaim God’s presence and love in everything we say and do.

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

L: Rushing Wind of the Spirit, breathe new life into us!

P: Blazing Flame of the Spirit, burn away our fears!

L: Comforting Presence of the Spirit, heal our wounds

P: Let us be prepared to worship and praise you, O Holy Spirit.

L: Spirit of God, come upon us this day and fill us with your love.

P: Make us people who will proclaim God’s good news in all that we do.

 

OR (adapted from ministrymatters.com)

L: Listen, can you hear the wind?
P: Come, Holy Spirit; come!
L: Look, can you see the dancing flames?
P: Come, Holy Spirit; come!
L: Can you hear the message in a language you can understand?
P: Come, Holy Spirit; come!
L: Do you see the visions? Can you dream the dreams?
P: Come, Holy Spirit; come!
L: Come let Pentecost become real in our lives today.
P: We worship our God who sends the Spirit to touch us and transform us into Pentecost people.

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

L: Come, Holy Spirit. Inspire our hearts with your fiery presence!

P: Let your flame burn within us, stirring us to action.

L: Come, Holy Spirit. Energize our lives to work for God.

P: Let your wind of hope swirl around us, lifting and moving us from complacency.

L: Come, Holy Spirit. Pour your blessing on us.

P: Let your presence challenge us to proclaim God’s presence and love in everything we say and do. 

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

L: Rushing Wind of the Spirit, breathe new life into us!

P: Blazing Flame of the Spirit, burn away our fears!

L: Comforting Presence of the Spirit, heal our wounds

P: Let us be prepared to worship and praise you, O Holy Spirit.

L: Spirit of God, come upon us this day and fill us with your love.

P: Make us people who will proclaim God’s good news in all that we do. 

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

L: Lord, our hearts are on fire this day!
P: Set the blazes of hope that burn away fear!
L: Lord, we come here to be empowered to serve you.
P: Cause the winds of change to blow away doubt and alienation!
L: Praise to God who has brought to us the Holy Spirit!
P: Let us worship and rejoice, for God is challenging and empowering us this day!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Almighty God, who gives life and power to your church through the gift of your Spirit: Inspire us to bear witness to our living Lord. Quicken us to a recognition of your presence. Create in us grateful hearts. Challenge our minds with your wisdom. Encourage us with a heightened vision and hope. This we pray in the name of your Son Jesus Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR  (from ministrymatters.com)

Almighty God, your Holy Spirit came to Jesus’ disciples, hidden in an upper room in Jerusalem. A violent wind and tongues of fire were the symbols of a new thing happening in their lives. May your Holy Spirit burst into our lives today, encouraging and inspiring us to proclaim boldly the good news of Jesus Christ who offers healing and hope to all people.

 

OR

O God, we ask you to pour out your spirit on us. Help us serve you more cheerfully so we can serve our brothers and sisters. Cast out everything which breaks or hinders the growing bonds of love between us. Give us the determination to make progress so that all our lives we may seek after your holy and perfect will.

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

Spirit of God, we long to be open to your presence in our church and in our lives. Fill us with your wind and fire, that we might be enlivened again. Help us hear the words as if for the first time, that they might touch us anew. Give us visions and dreams of what you long for in your creation, that we might begin to live them into reality. Come, Spirit; come into our worship, into our church, into our very selves. (This we pray as Christ has taught us, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR (adapted from ministrymatters.com)

O God, giver of the Spirit, we are surrounded by red and hear the amazing story of Pentecost this morning. But we’ve heard it so many times before. It is so familiar; we’ve ceased to be amazed and surprised or filled with excitement.  Blow us out of our complacency. Let the flames of passion dance in our lives. Inspire us with visions and dreams. Help us appreciate each gift you give us as your one Church, for we pray in the name of our Lord Jesus (who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

Spirit of wind and fire, come to us this day, freeing us from our fears. Lift us up when we have fallen. Dust us off and set us squarely on the path to hope you have set before us. Remind us that we are never far from your presence. Get us ready for the great adventure and opportunities that lie before us. Help us to be good and willing workers for you. In Christ’s Name, we pray (as he taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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

O God, the creator and preserver of all, we pray for people of all sorts and conditions. Make your purpose known in the earth, your saving power among the nations. We pray for the well-being of the catholic Church.

 

So guide and guard it by your good Spirit, that all who profess and call themselves Christians may be led into the way of truth, and hold the faith in the unity of the Spirit and in righteousness of life. We commend to your generous goodness all those who are in any way afflicted or distressed, in mind, body, or circumstances, especially as we lift to you ______________ and those we name to you in the silence of our hearts. (silent prayer) Comfort and relieve them according to their individual needs; give them patience under their sufferings, and a happy release out of all their afflictions. All this we ask for the sake of Jesus Christ.

 

OR (The following 6 petitions may be used as collects, or brought into one pastoral prayer.)

O Holy Spirit, Tongue of Fire, descend upon us as you descended upon the disciples gathered in the upper room for prayer.  Sanctify us, free us from the bondage of sin, and give us your power to speak with one voice.

 

Rushing Wind, sweep over our lands and make your sound gather again your devout people from every nation under heaven.  Help us to manifest together the victory of life over death given through the resurrection.  Make us signs of the living hope and witnesses for your peace.

 

Giver of Life, abide in us, transform our former selves into a new life in faithfulness to God’s will.  Along with all others with whom we live, with all nations and peoples, we would enter a new time of transformation, when hatred is replaced by love, violence by meaningful discourse, condemnation by forgiveness, and self-centeredness by sharing.

 

Power of Unity, help us to move from the Babel of division toward the Pentecost of unity, even here amidst the diversity of gifts, traditions, and cultures.  Make your church to be ministers of reconciliation among the children of the world.

 

Spirit of Truth, free us from our alienation from you.  Liberate us from the powers and principalities which oppress and alienate.  Make us instruments of your just peace, to which we have been called by prophets, apostles, and martyrs.

 

O Holy Spirit, the splendor of Christ’s realm is through your power, now available to us all.  Make us messengers of the good news, apostles of your peace, that we may be known as children of God.

 

OR

R may indicate silent prayer, or a simple response, such as “Lord, hear our prayer.”

Through Christ, who ever lives to make intercession for us, let us pray to the Lord. (silence)

Lift up our hearts to the heavenly places and inspire us to serve you as a royal priesthood: R

Let all peoples acknowledge your kingdom and grant on earth the blessing of peace: R

Send down upon us the gift of the Spirit and renew your Church with power from on high: R

May peace abound and righteousness flourish, that we may vanquish injustice and wrong: R

Help us to proclaim the good news of salvation, and grant us the needful gifts of your grace: R

Let us commend the world, for which Christ prays, to the mercy and protection of God. (silence)

A concluding collect or Prayer for the Day may follow.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Knock us off our seats, O Lord, with the wind of your Holy Spirit. Don’t let us just sit back and rest as though nothing important was happening. Remind us that you have come to bless and prepare us for your service. Now is the time of proclamation and celebration! Now is the birth of your church, not as an exercise in futility, but as a dynamic group of people who know you and love you as you know and love each of us. Flame up our hearts! Make us so joyful that we find it difficult to sit back and watch. We want to be part of your healing love and mercy. We want to be people who bear the word that your love for us is eternal; that Jesus Christ, our Savior, proclaimed and taught that love in all that he did and said, modeling for us a new way to live. Pick us up and propel us forward into your world. Help us to remember that you have given to us what we need to be your disciples. We just need to say a resounding “Yes!” to you. Thank you for all the wondrous patience and blessings you pour into our lives each and every day, as we offer our lives back to you in joy and hope. Amen.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

The bars of our prisons melt at the power of the Holy Spirit, O God. We praise and thank you for the fulfillment of the promise made by your Son Jesus that we would have a counselor, a guide. We thought we could feel no greater joy than we felt on Easter Day when the good news of Jesus’ resurrection greeted our ears! But this surpasses all that. You have come to us in our imprisonment and freed us. You have given to us a voice of power and hope to proclaim the good news! You have poured into our lives the Holy Spirit to be with us always! These things are so amazing to us. Thank you. We ask that you be with our dear ones who face illness, who mourn, who feel lost and alone, who hurt in so many ways. Help us to reach out to them with lovingkindness, in the name of the Holy Spirit. Strengthen us for the times ahead. Give us courage to proclaim your love with our lives, for we ask this in Jesus’ Name.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

God, who as at this time

taught the hearts of your faithful people

by sending to them the light of your Holy Spirit:

grant us by the same Spirit

to have a right judgement in all things

and evermore to rejoice in his holy comfort;

through the merits of Christ Jesus our Saviour,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Faithful God,

who fulfilled the promises of Easter

by sending us your Holy Spirit

and opening to every race and nation

the way of life eternal:

open our lips by your Spirit,

that every tongue may tell of your glory;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Holy Spirit, sent by the Father,

ignite in us your holy fire;

strengthen your children with the gift of faith,

revive your Church with the breath of love,

and renew the face of the earth,

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Almighty God, on this day you opened the way of eternal life

to every race and nation by the promised gift of your Holy

Spirit: Shed abroad this gift throughout the world by the

preaching of the Gospel, that it may reach to the ends of the

earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns

with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever

and ever.  Amen.

 

or this

 

O God, who on this day taught the hearts of your faithful

people by sending to them the light of your Holy Spirit:

Grant us by the same Spirit to have a right judgment in all

things, and evermore to rejoice in his holy comfort; 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 20:19-23

 

Let your divine breath, O God,

breathe upon us that we receive

Holy Spirit.

For in this reception are we become

the agents of your Christ,

the Giver of your delight.

 

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

By the goodness of God, we are called into the family of the church. By God’s grace, we rejoice to share in the church’s life of mission and ministry. Let us offer our tithes and gifts to God’s glory as a token of the offering of our very lives.

 

OR (adapted from ministrymatters.com)

Pentecost people! We have received gifts too numerous to count. Now we have a chance to give in thanks and joy. Your offering will enable this church to be a living presence of Christ in this community

and the world—to reach out in passionate commitment and bring the wind and fire of the Spirit to a people and a world that so desperately need it.

 

Offertory Prayer

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.

 

OR

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 (from ministrymatters.com)

For all you have given, for all we have received, we give you thanks. We bring before you our gifts of substance and the gift of our lives. We bring our passion and joy and surprise, our visions and dreams. May they refresh and enliven our church and community, as the wind of your Spirit did long ago.

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

Lord of wind and fire, of hope and mercy, we ask that you bless these gifts today. We praise you for them and ask that you cause them to be put to work for your kingdom. In Christ’s name, we pray.

 

Invitation to the Table

Friends, this is the joyful feast of the people of God. They will come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and sit at the table in the kingdom of God. This is the Lord’s table. Jesus invites all who seek to trust him to share in the feast which he has prepared. Let us come to his table now with hope and confidence as God’s children.

 

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. Come, Holy Spirit, upon your people, we pray, and upon this sacred Table, that this bread which we break may be for us the body of Christ, and that we who are his body may live in unity and at peace with you and all of your creation.
  2. Come, Holy Spirit, upon this gift of wine, that as we receive it, we may know the fullness of salvation, and bear witness to the faith which is ours in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Blessed are you, Lord our God; you bring forth bread from the earth, and wine in its season. Your holiness calls to us today, Lord, as you called to your people in the life of Jesus Christ. Although many rejected him and reject him still, we remember and celebrate his presence with us in the power of your Holy Spirit. 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, empowered by your Spirit to give glory and honor to you through the life of your holy Church.

 

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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Ascension Sunday A or Easter 7A

 

May 24

 

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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):

 

For Ascension:

Acts 1:1-11

Psalm 47 or Psalm 93
Ephesians 1:15-23
Luke 24:44-53

 

For Easter 7A

Acts 1:6-14
Psalm 68:1-10, 32-35
1 Peter 4:12-14; 5:6-11
John 17:1-11

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Ascension:
233 Alleluia! Sing to Jesus!
234 Crown Him with many crowns
91/92 All hail the power of Jesus’ name
95 Jesus shall reign
586 Open my eyes

 

Easter 7:
104 Of the Father’s love begotten
699 Rejoice, the Lord is King
493 We’re united
494 They’ll know we are Christians

 

Either Set of Texts:
491 As grain on scattered hillsides
397 Come, Risen Lord
393 One Bread, one Body
356 We, your people, God, confessing
495 Weave

 

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 Acts 1:6-14

 

Division days impel the heart

as inquiry is made

and justly turned aside to wait

the wisdom of our God.

 

Instead we wait upon the day

when Spirit comes to stir

the laden souls to witness life

seen in the Risen Lord.

 

Become now in this grand divide

the ones who see him rise,

be lifted up unto the skies

ascending unto God.

 

And why should these stand looking thus,

observing as he’s gone?

Await in earnest ever more

to see him come afresh.

 

Together as a waiting crowd

who wonder at the word,

eleven and the women too,

devoted unto prayer.

 

CM     Suggested tune: Arden

 

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: No advice available. See Calls 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   

Psalm 96 alt. (from Daily Prayer, Supplement Lit. Resources 5)

L: O Lord, open my lips.
P: And my mouth shall proclaim your praise.
L: The mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing.
P: And all the trees of the forest shall clap their hands.
L: Behold, our Sovereign Lord is coming to reign forever.
P: Alleluia!

 

OR (adapted from ministrymatters.com)

L: Shout to the rooftops! Our Lord Jesus Christ is seated at God’s right hand!

P: The same Christ who was given by God to help us learn how to live together and love each other is now seated with God!

L: Don’t stand staring into the heavens! Christ’s spirit is with us, in us, and through us!

P: Rejoice! It is not time to mourn!

L: Come, join us in song, praising God with our whole lives and spirits!

P: We praise our God with song!

 

OR from Psalm 93

L: The Lord our king is robed in majesty, robed and girded with strength.

P:  God has established the world; it shall never be moved.

L: Your throne is established from of old.

P:  You are from everlasting.

L:  The floods have lifted up their roaring voice.

P:  But more majestic than the thunders of mighty waters, more majestic than the waves of the sea, majestic on high is the LORD!

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: Welcome! We are gathered here to celebrate the great promise!
P: Our hearts are ready to receive this good news.
L: Jesus asked all of his friends to live lives reflecting the love of God.
P: We are numbered among these friends!
L: Open your hearts today. Hear God’s special word just for you!
P: May God open our hearts to live in Christ’s love.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Welcome! Today is filled with excitement!
P: What’s going on?
L: We are celebrating the promise Jesus made just before he ascended to heaven.
P: What was that?
L: He promised to send the Spirit of truth to be with us always, reminding us of God’s love.
P: That’s good news for us at all times: God is with us! 

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Shout to God with songs of great joy!
P: Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised!
L: God has made us whole.
P: God has called us to a ministry of hope and love.
L: Come, let us celebrate the love of God!
P: Let us praise God’s name and serve God joyfully.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

God of light and truth, you are beyond our grasp or conceiving. Before the brightness of your presence, the angels veil their faces. With lowly reverence and adoring love, we acclaim your glory and sing your praise, for you have shown us your truth and love in Jesus Christ our Savior. (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Or

O God, in the risen Christ you have called us into new life. Transform us to receive your Holy Spirit afresh, that in our love for you we may be made ready to serve the world in his name (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

We adore you, Christ, as the One who promised to be with us to the end of the age. We now lay claim to that promise, for we are gathered here, as your disciples, in anticipation of your blessing and your commission, and for the promised coming of your Holy Spirit. Come to us, Lord, and may we know you in your coming, (for we pray as you have taught us, saying, “Our father…”)

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

God of incredible surprises, as we gaze into the clouds, remind us that we are standing on holy ground. Place our feet on the pathways of peace and hope. Draw our attention from the vision of the Lord rising to the heavens to be with you and help us to focus on the ministries that you would have us do. Keep us ready and willing always to serve you all our days, as we pray in the name of Jesus (who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…)

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

Gracious Lord, this morning we come to you with so many things on our hearts. Keep our hearts and our minds open to your words of healing and of hope. Give us spirits of courage for all the times ahead. We ask your blessing on all who are apart from us. Be with these dear people. Help them to feel your comforting and restoring presence. Give to us also, Lord, a spirit of peace and joy that we might live our your love through our attitudes and actions. In Jesus’ Name we pray (even as he taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Lord of amazing visions, prepare our hearts and our spirits this day to receive your glad tidings of an Advocate. Help make us ready to be your disciples in all that we do, say, and think. For we ask this in the name of our beloved Savior Jesus Christ (who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

God of all glory, as we come to know your Son through the living word of scripture, enlighten our hearts

with the spirit of wisdom and revelation. Remind us again of Christ’s authority over the church at all times and in all places. Renew in us again our purpose as Christ’s followers: to proclaim repentance and forgiveness of sins in the name of Jesus Christ to all people in all places. All glory and honor be to you, Christ Jesus. Amen.

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

adapted from ministrymatters.com

Dear God, we are so fortunate to be gathered by you to hear the good news of the promised Spirit of Truth. We celebrate that we are a community of people, each at a different point on his or her faith journey, each seeking your healing love and mercy. We are called to witness to the good news of Jesus who taught us about your love for each one of us and for your magnificent creation.

 

But there are those for whom this word seems a distant hope or experience. They struggle with the difficulties of everyday living, with addictions, with illness, with alienation. Help us to bring the good news to them in gentle kindness and compassionate understanding. Let our actions and attitudes reflect all that Jesus taught us. For just a moment we take a deep breath and remember those we love who are in difficulty. (Silent prayer)

 

You have heard the cries of our hearts, O Lord. We ask for your healing mercies on all whom we have mentioned by voice and by prayer. We also ask for your healing in our own lives. Keep our hearts open to your love. Help us be witnesses of mercy and hope wherever you place us. We ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Lord, we sometimes wonder why you bother with us. Throughout history, you have called to humankind to be your witnesses. You have given to each a special blessing. But the historical record reveals the stubborn, selfish responses of your people. We think that we deserve your blessing and don’t have to do your will. We have acted in wicked ways far too often. Today you have called us together to hear the words of Jesus as he prayed for his disciples, telling you that his love for them is complete and that he believes in them. We would like to think that we are included in that number, that Jesus prays for us and loves us. And, indeed, he does. He has given his life for us. Now we are called to give our lives for him, to offer to all the good news that God’s love is real and powerful. God’s healing mercy is for all people. We offer our prayers for our families and our friends who are in situations of need, asking God’s blessings upon them. We raise our voices in choruses of pleading for you to be present to all your people, creating pathways of peace. Be with us, gracious Lord. Help us to witness to the world, not only by our words and our thoughts, but by our actions that your peace may be known. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

With mouths gaping open and eyes looking heavenward, we trace the ascension of our beloved Savior Jesus Christ back to you. We would like to stand here, looking heavenward and thinking about how much Jesus means to us, but we are called to lower our eyes and get moving to serve you in this world, Lord. We can hold the image of his ascension in our hearts, but our hands and spirits must be ready to do the work that you have set before us. You have asked us to live out our Resurrection faith in service, offering peace and justice, hope and healing to all whom we meet. It is easy for us to lift the names of those near and dear to us in prayer in our worship service. We want your healing mercies for all who are ill, who mourn, who are lost and alone. We want to rejoice in prayer with those who have received special joys during this week. All these things are important to us and we know they are important to you. Help us to live the prayers we ask. Help us to be agents of healing and mercy, of peace and hope. We offer our lives and prayers to you in the name of our ascended Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.

 

OR adapted from Great Thanksgiving below, from ministrymatters.com

adapted from ministrymatters.com

You are worthy of all our praise, O God, for you are the source of all good.  By your power, heaven and earth were formed. By your power, you created us and gave us life. By your power, we are guided and protected. By your power, Jesus Christ triumphed over the grave. By your power, the Holy Spirit comes to sustain and care for us. And so, in praise and gratitude, we join the generations of the faithful in singing your praise.

 

When Jesus ascended into heaven, he promised his followers a baptism with the Holy Spirit, a power from on high. Clothe us in this Spirit, that we might share a common ministry of service to the world.

By your power, fill our voices with stories of your grace. By your power, strengthen our hands for the work of your mercy. By your power, transform us into your representatives of your love.

 

In great joy and anticipation, empowered by your Spirit, we await the return of Christ, as we offer praise to you, Almighty God, in whom we live and move and have our being.  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 Sovereign Lord. Amen.

 

OR

Lord of life, hear us as we lift to you our hopes and prayers for the church and the world. Let your grace empower us as people of faith to better serve you in the common places of our lives, and in the people we meet on our faith journeys. Open our eyes to the living Christ as we pray for and work with the poor, the broken-hearted, the sick and the bereaved. Hear our prayers for those who are close to our hearts.

 

In your resurrecting power, lift them up and give them renewed strength and hope; and give to us all new faith by which to live our days with you. Then will our lives be living witness to your resurrection, made whole by your love and care. In Christ’s Spirit we pray.

 

OR

A Bidding Prayer. (At “R” the people respond with silent prayer or one that is planned, such as “Lord, hear our prayer.”)

 

For the peace from above, for the loving kindness of God, and for the salvation of all, let us pray to the Lord.   R

For the peace of the world, for the welfare of the holy church of God, and the unity of all peoples, let us pray to the Lord. R

For our church family, our leaders and all ministers of God’s grace, let us pray to the Lord. R

For our nation’s leaders and the leaders of all peoples, and for all who bear authority, let us pray to the Lord. R

For this city and every community, and for all who live in them, l let us pray to the Lord. R

For seasonable weather and for abundance in the fruits of earth and labor, let us pray to the Lord. R

For the good earth, God’s creation, and for the wisdom and will to care for it, let us pray to the Lord. R

For the aged and infirm, the widowed and orphaned, and for the sick and suffering, let us pray to the Lord. R

For _______let us pray to the Lord. R

For the poor and oppressed, the unemployed and destitute, for prisoners and captives, and for all who remember and care for them, let us pray to the Lord. R

For deliverance from danger, violence, degradation and oppression, let us pray to the Lord. R

For the forgiveness of sins and the wrongs we have done to others, let us pray to the Lord. R

For those who have died in faith, whose memories are dear to us, let us give thanks to God and offer our own needs in faith. (Silence)

 

Hear the prayers of your people, O God, for we offer them in faith and hope, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Ascension

Collect

 

Grant, we pray, almighty God,

that as we believe your only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ

to have ascended into the heavens,

so we in heart and mind may also ascend

and with him continually dwell;

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

God our Father,

you have raised our humanity in Christ

and have fed us with the bread of heaven:

mercifully grant that, nourished with such spiritual blessings,

we may set our hearts in the heavenly places;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Risen Christ,

you have raised our human nature to the throne of heaven:

help us to seek and serve you,

that we may join you at the Father’s side,

where you reign with the Spirit in glory,

now and for ever.

 

7th Sunday of Easter

Collect

 

O God the King of glory,

you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ

with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven:

we beseech you, leave us not comfortless,

but send your Holy Spirit to strengthen us

and exalt us to the place where our Saviour Christ is gone before,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Eternal God, giver of love and power,

your Son Jesus Christ has sent us into all the world

to preach the gospel of his kingdom:

confirm us in this mission,

and help us to live the good news we proclaim;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Risen, ascended Lord,

as we rejoice at your triumph,

fill your Church on earth with power and compassion,

that all who are estranged by sin

may find forgiveness and know your peace,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

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

Ascension Day

Almighty God, whose blessed Son our Savior Jesus Christ

ascended far above all heavens that he might fill all things:

Mercifully give us faith to perceive that, according to his

promise, he abides with his Church on earth, even to the end

of the ages; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and

reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory

everlasting.  Amen.

 

or this

 

Grant, we pray, Almighty God, that as we believe your

only‑begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ to have ascended

into heaven, so we may also in heart and mind there ascend,

and with him continually dwell; who lives and reigns with

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

 

Seventh Sunday of Easter

O God, the King of glory, you have exalted your only Son

Jesus Christ with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven:

Do not leave us comfortless, but send us your Holy Spirit to

strengthen us, and exalt us to that place where our Savior

Christ has gone before; who lives and reigns with you and

the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting.  Amen.

 

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

John 17:1-14

 

Our God,

in the prayer of Jesus, we are one

in the word made flesh.

By his love, we are in this world

but not of this world;

Make us rather consecrated in truth

that your love be fulfilled in us.

 

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

from ministrymatters.com

Gifted with the grace of God, and clothed with power from on high, let us now offer ourselves to the building of God’s kingdom.

 

from ministrymatters.com

If Jesus was giving directions to his disciples today, they might sound something like this: “You will be my witnesses to (your home town), to all of (your county), to (your state), and to the ends of the earth. “One way we become Christ’s witnesses is through our giving today. Some of our gifts will help people in Jesus’ name locally through (mention a local ministry). Some funds will reach into our state through (mention a conference or regional ministry). Some gifts will reach far into our world in the name of Jesus through our support of (mention an international ministry that you support). I invite you to give generously and joyfully as you fulfill Christ’s call to be his witnesses to (your town, your county, your state), and to all the world.

 

Offertory Prayer

from ministrymatters.com

With joy and confidence in your abiding love and presence with us, we present these gifts, tokens of our lives, as an offering for service in and to this world which you have entrusted to us. Bless these gifts and bless all those who place their trust in you. Amen.

 

OR

We give thanks to you, O God, for the promise of your abiding presence among us, and for your abundant life within and around us. As we offer our gifts to you, may they be made useful in this world, that your saving presence may be known among all people.

 

OR

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.

 

OR

O God, through the offering of these gifts, we become a more open people—open-minded in hearing your word and wisdom, open-hearted in healing a broken world, open-handed in heeding your call to charity and enacted love. With thanks for all good gifts, we present a portion of our substance and the whole of ourselves. Amen.

 

Invitation to the Table

from ministrymatters.com

Come to the table. It’s an open feast. Christ invites us all—the rich and the poor, the outcast and the honored.  Come to the gathering of sinners and saints. Come to this blessed table where Christ reigns. Come and taste the kingdom of God, where all are welcome.

 

OR

The Risen One is here among us, here and now. He calls to us not to look toward the sky, but into the faces of those who surround us; to listen to them; to commune with them; to give live peaceably with them. May we hear his voice and invitation to come and receive the gift of this new life, here and now.

 

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)

 

adapted from ministrymatters.com

You are worthy of all our praise, O God, for you are the source of all good.  By your power, heaven and earth were formed. By your power, you created us and gave us life. By your power, we are guided and protected. By your power, Jesus Christ triumphed over the grave. By your power, the Holy Spirit comes to sustain and care for us. And so, in praise and gratitude, we join the generations of the faithful in singing your praise.

 

(Here, the “Holy, holy, holy” may be spoken or sung, followed by the words of institution)

 

When Jesus ascended into heaven, he promised his followers a baptism with the Holy Spirit, a power from on high. Clothe us in this Spirit, that we might share a common ministry of service to the world.

By your power, fill our voices with stories of your grace. By your power, strengthen our hands for the work of your mercy. By your power, transform us into your representatives of your love.

 

In great joy and anticipation, empowered by your Spirit, we await the return of Christ, as we offer praise to you, Almighty God, in whom we live and move and have our being.

 

OR

Holy God, creator of heaven and earth, we joyfully thank you and praise your name. You formed the universe in your wisdom, and created all things by your power. You set us in families on the earth to live with you in faith. We praise you for good gifts of bread and wine, and for the table you spread in the world as a sign of your love for all people.
Even having taken up his cross and dying that we might live, our Lord Jesus overcame death and is risen in power. He is still the friend of sinners. We trust him to overcome every power that can hurt or divide us, and believe that when he comes again in glory, we will celebrate victory with him throughout eternity at his heavenly table.
And so, in remembrance of him, we take this bread and cup and give you thanks and praise. Pour out your Spirit upon us, that this bread and cup may be for us the body and blood of Christ, and that we, and all who share this feast, may be one with Christ and he with us. Fill us with eternal life, that with joy we may be his faithful people until we feast with him in glory.

 

OR

Blessed are you, Lord our God. You bring forth bread from the earth and the fruit of the vine in its season, to be worked by human hands and offered up to you for the good of all the world. Send down the power of your Spirit upon this bread and wine, and upon us gathered here out of love for you, that as we receive these gifts we may be made one with you, one with each other, and one in service to the world, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

OR

  1. Blessed are you, Lord our God. You bring forth bread from the earth, to be worked by human hands and offered up to you for the good of all the world. Bless this bread which we break, that we may receive the body of Christ and be so empowered to live as his body in the world until he comes again.

 

  1. Blessed are you, Lord our God. You bring forth the fruit of the vine in its season, to be worked by human hands and offered up to you as the cup of our salvation. Send down the power of your Spirit upon this bread and wine, and upon us gathered here out of love for you, that as we receive these gifts we may be made one with you, one with each other, and one in service to the world, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Conclusion:  Through him, with him, and in him, in the power of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor be to you, O God, now and forever. Amen.

If not previously offered: “And now with the confidence of your children, we offer the prayer our Savior taught us, ‘Our Father…’

 

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 A

 

April 12

 

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 study links and resources for each individual pericope:

Acts 10:34-43 or Jeremiah 31:1-6
Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24
Colossians 3:1-4 or Acts 10:34-43
John 20:1-18 or Matthew 28:1-10

 

Earlier Entries

Hymns for Early Easter

Easter Vigil, Year A

Easter Sunday, Year A

Gospel Acclamations for Disciples Congregations

 

Easter Vigil:  For notes on a prior Easter Vigil posting, see https://lifeinliturgy.wordpress.com/2012/03/27/easter-b-vigil-service/

 

Service of Baptismal Renewal, see   https://lifeinliturgy.wordpress.com/2012/12/11/baptism-of-christ-c-jan-13/

 

Service of Easter Evening

Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Isaiah 25:6-9

Psalm 114

1 Corinthians 5:6b-8

Luke 24:13-49

Hymns:  Any of the Easter hymns noted below are appropriate; especially for evening 227 (In the Garden), 231 (Sing of One Who Walks Beside Us), and 636 (Abide with me)

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Any of hymns 215-234

Hymn of Praise:   215-226, 228

Hymn of Prayer:   227

Hymn of Invitation:   229, 233

Communion Hymn:   233, 422, 404

Hymn for Easter by the Curator: where is your sting

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 Jeremiah 31:1-6

 

It is the day of promise found,

the day fulfilling life and peace.

Today, it is survival found,

the grateful fruit of wilderness.

 

And on this day of full surprise,

the day fulfillment dawns for us,

we find you have rebuilt us, Lord:

your love abides in rich allure.

 

We come in dance, in merriment,

to echo heaven’s full delight.

We come to vineyards planted well,

enjoying here thy vintage reaped.

 

The watcher, calling out the day,

bids us to rise, to contemplate,

learn satisfying wonder, blithe

enough to welcome at the cross..

 

It is our day, our holy day,

and, in this sweep of awe, we rise

to enter, join the brilliant throng

in praise for God, our faithful One!

 

LM         Suggested tune: Fulda

 

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 118, see p. 758.

 

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

Grace and peace to you from Jesus Christ our Lord.

My brothers and sisters in Christ:  On this most holy morning in which Jesus Christ passed over from death to life, we gather as the church to pray and watch for the dawning of his triumph and resurrection.  We join with the whole company of God’s people in heaven and on earth in recalling and celebrating his victory over death, and our deliverance from the bondage of sin and darkness to everlasting light.

                Hear the Word of God of God:  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…In him was life, and the life was the light of all people.  The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” 

 

OR

Come, let us praise the Lord, let us worship our risen Savior, for death has given away to life, despair has been overwhelmed by hope, grief has been replaced by joy, and darkness has been dispelled by light!

 

OR

Jesus has passed through the door of death and opened the way to the blessing of life. As on the third day, his presence can penetrate the barrier of our fears and give us peace, that we may proclaim the beauty of forgiveness and the strength that community supplies. Friends, Christ is risen and he is here. Let us worship God, who blesses us with life.

 

OR

L: Alleluia. Christ is Risen.

P:  The Lord is risen indeed.  Alleluia!

L: May his grace and peace be with you.

P:  May he fill our hearts with joy.  Alleluia!

            (The Paschal Candle is lit,)

L: Christ our Light!

P:  Thanks be to God.  Alleluia!

 

OR

L: Alleluia. Christ is Risen.

P:  The Lord is risen indeed.  Alleluia!

L: God’s desire for life to abound in us has conquered death.

P: We are now raised with Christ to life eternal. Alleluia!

 

OR

L: Christ is risen.

P: Christ is risen, indeed.

L: God is alive..

P: New birth is given.

L: Hope is alive…

P: A new age is dawning.

L: Joy is alive…

P: Redemption is here.

L: Love is alive

P: Death cannot harm us.

L: We are alive…

P: New life is within us.

L: The church is alive…

P: God’s spirit is within us.

        God of life, we worship you.

        God of creation, we praise you.

        God of revelation, we learn from you.

        God of resurrection, we come to celebrate you.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

O Life-giving God, your love for your children knows no boundaries. In Jesus Christ your Son, you have gone the full distance, even into the shadows of death, to find us, redeem us, and bring us back to life. Fill our hearts with joyous praise, even as we still may struggle to see life in the midst of its own shadows, so that as we proclaim your greatest good news this day we may bring glory to you and new hope to your world, for we pray in his name (as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

God of love and glory, this week has been one of mixed emotions, of our struggle to understand. We have celebrated with palm branches, sat at table with the disciples, felt the pain of Christ’s betrayal and the agony of his death upon the cross. And on this third day, we witness your power in the Resurrection, the victory over death. Help us to truly experience your presence as we celebrate this day and every day the joy of the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior. Be with us now as we worship and offer our prayers together through Christ our Lord, (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR  from Bread for the Journey

Gracious God, Power of Life, we praise you that you have not abandoned us to the living death of sin and despair, but that with Jesus Christ, you have lifted us up from the grave. Grant that we might ourselves know the power of the resurrection, now and in the world to come; for it is in the name of the risen Christ that we pray (even as he taught his disciples to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

God of all ages and of all people, the shadows and gloom of Good Friday have been dispersed by the light and color of Easter Sunday. We rejoice in your power that turns our sorrow into joy, our despair into hope, our defeat into victory, and evil into goodness. Help us on this day, O God, to burst out of the tombs that have entrapped us: tombs of selfishness and sinfulness, greed and gluttony, scandal and corruption, pride and prejudice. Let now a new life of divine grace and human love burst forth from each of us, through the power of Jesus Christ, the Risen One (who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Almighty and ever-living God, your people in all the earth adore you in this and every hour. We look to you especially in this day which by the resurrection of your Son is made holy. And for the blessings of this life, we thank you and celebrate the resurrection of our Savior, which is to be our own resurrection.

Given such great blessings, we cannot help but be awakened to the cries of those who have no earthly hope. We hear the call of the hungry, the destitute, the very old and very young who do not see the light of day. Give us the fortitude, O God, to face the call and respond with haste to feed and clothe and love all of your people, and to gather them as lambs into the hope which we have found in the light of your Christ.

 

We hear the cry of the soul-sick with grief and anger and fear. We see the need of our neighbors and are shamefully inattentive to their suffering. Brace us with courage, O God, where their courage is broken, and enable us to lift them up when they cannot carry themselves through the thorny paths of their lives, and to help them find the path of salvation, healing and peace.

 

We hear the groan of bondage in our world and see the stripes of the taskmaster on the backs of humanity. Great God of the living, give us power to break the bonds of evil which perplex and destroy. Help us to free our fellows with the liberating word of truth that Christ has broken the bonds of death, hell and the grave.

 

So many who are near to us are ill and suffering. Be by the side of these dear ones in this hour and the hours that lay ahead. Heal those lives for whom the world can hold no cure. Bind up the wounds which find no salve. Give peace to the broken ones who face death and separation.

 

Plough up the hardness of your church, O Lord, when we become infertile and unproductive. Give us grace to know that the hardships we must face are to prepare us to receive new life and a new age of fruitfulness for your kingdom. As we go through our daily walks of life, help us all to be a benediction upon the lives of our families, our co-workers and each of those lives whom we touch even briefly. Give us grace to bring our every need and those of our neighbors to the altar of your love and grace in the name of Jesus, your Christ.

 

OR

Righteous and ever living God, on this day your Son shattered the power of death, bringing life and immortality to light. On this day of all days in human history, help us to not to miss the power of its significance. Give us Easter’s holy power to adequately praise you and to rejoice in the new life that is ours. Intensify our joy in the resurrection that turned night into light and mourning into laughter. May our lives that often seem so dull and drab be made new, even as we go about our daily tasks. Open our eyes to the new possibilities of a world made fresh with praise. Give us the power of the resurrection, which broke the reign of death, to shatter every ancient tyranny that entombs your children: the intrigues of war, the subtlety of vested interests, racist pride, and ambitious self-seeking; and to break the enslaving shackles of debilitating doubts, secret lusts, persistent sins, wavering self-respect, diminishing integrity, and ever-deepening bitterness.

 

Give us, we pray, the victory of Easter that turned a cross into a resurrection, and made the symbol of shame into the sign of victory, to gain triumph from our worst defeats, to turn darkness to day, to make temptations into redemptive opportunities, to transform tragedy into faith, freshly made graves into hope, and all bitterness to love.

 

Give us the peace of the resurrection that calmed the terrorized hearts of your children, and as we wait upon you, speak calm to our souls. Because Christ lives, we, too, shall live, and so we rejoice. Until the day dawns, grant us brave hearts and constant spirits, as we lift our hearts to you in praise and thanksgiving, through Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Lord of life, hear us as we lift to you our hopes and prayers for the church and the world. Let your grace empower us as people of faith to better serve you in the common places of our lives, and in the people we meet on our faith journeys.  Open our eyes to the living Christ as we pray for and work with the poor, the broken-hearted, the sick and the bereaved.  Hear our prayers for those who are close to our hearts.  In your resurrecting power, lift them up and give them renewed strength and hope; and give to us all new faith by which to live our days with you.  Then will our lives be living witness to your resurrection, made whole by your love and care.  In Christ’s Spirit we pray.

 

OR

Holy God, we come before you in prayer, lifting to you the joys and concerns, the hopes and dreams of our lives.  May we also be open to your voice in our lives that we may see with new eyes, and hear with new ears, the direction you will have us to go.

 

Bless, we pray, this gathering of your people that we may grow and flourish in your love and grace for the purpose to which you have called us.

 

Hear our prayers for those whose lives have touched us—those who are in pain, those who are ill, those who grieve.  May we touch their lives not only through our prayers, but through our lives and actions as well.

 

Guide us, bless us, uplift us, and hold us, for we are your children called to our purpose in your world.  Hear our prayers, those spoken and those hidden in our hearts, we pray in the name of Christ our Lord.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Lord of all life and power,

who through the mighty resurrection of your Son

overcame the old order of sin and death

to make all things new in him:

grant that we, being dead to sin

and alive to you in Jesus Christ,

may reign with him in glory;

to whom with you and the Holy Spirit

be praise and honour, glory and might,

now and in all eternity.

 

Post Communion

 

God of Life,

who for our redemption gave your only-begotten Son

to the death of the cross,

and by his glorious resurrection

have delivered us from the power of our enemy:

grant us so to die daily to sin,

that we may evermore live with him in the joy of his risen life;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

God of glory,

by the raising of your Son

you have broken the chains of death and hell:

fill your Church with faith and hope;

for a new day has dawned

and the way to life stands open

in our Saviour Jesus Christ.

 

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

O God, who for our redemption gave your only‑begotten

Son to the death of the cross, and by his glorious resurrection

delivered us from the power of our enemy: Grant us so to die

daily to sin, that we may evermore live with him in the joy of

his resurrection; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God,

now and for ever. Amen.

 

or this

 

O God, who made this most holy night to shine with the

glory of the Lord’s resurrection: Stir up in your Church that

Spirit of adoption which is given to us in Baptism, that we,

being renewed both in body and mind, may worship you in

sincerity and truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives

and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God,

now and for ever. Amen.

 

or this

 

Almighty God, who through your only‑begotten Son Jesus

Christ overcame death and opened to us the gate of

everlasting life: Grant that we, who celebrate with joy the

day of the Lord’s resurrection, may be raised from the death

of sin by your life‑giving Spirit; through Jesus Christ our

Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one

God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

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

John 20:1-18

Call us to hope by name, O God,

for we are slow to wait your call.

We see the empty tomb and go

while your Apostle waits and weeps

until you intercede

and there are seen.

Call us by name that we may find

your presence in our style of heart.

 

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 is at work in the world, renewing, remaking, resurrecting, bringing hope through the faith, the gifts, and the work of the church. We trust in God, and together we work for peace and justice through God’s Spirit as we offer our tithes and gifts. Let us rejoice in our God-given opportunity to share in God’s work.

 

Offertory Prayer

We know, O God, that the good news of the resurrection is not to be kept a secret, hidden away as the private promise to a few. Rather, it is to be universal communication of hope and joy to all people; and to that worldwide proclamation we dedicate our gifts today.

 

Invitation to the Table

Beloved in Christ, the gospel tells us that on the first day of the week, Jesus Christ was raised from death, appeared to Mary Magdalene, on that same day sat at the table with two disciples and was made known to them in the breaking of bread. This is the joyful feast of the people of God. Men and women, youth and children, come from the east and the west, from the north and the south, and gather about Christ’s table. This table is for all who wish to know the presence of Christ and to share in the community of God’s people. (UCC, adapted)

 

FOR EVENING:

Luke wrote of our risen Savior, who at the table with two of the disciples, took bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. Their eyes were opened, and they recognized the risen Christ in the breaking of the bread. In company with all believers in every time and place, and beyond all time and place, we come to this table, to know the risen Christ in the breaking of the bread.

 

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)

 

from William Flewelling:

When we were barely looking, Lord God, you came upon us.

In the mystery of our despair, you raised the touch of love.

In the anguish of our uncertainty you lifted the grace of Christ.

In the hour of our dejection you raised for us the cup of thanksgiving.

In the torment of our fright you held us in the risen arms of Christ.

Holy God, we rejoice in your arising.

As your raised our Lord Jesus, raise us in hope to love and to share.

As the broken bread, our Manna, the body of Christ is given to feed our souls, raise us in life to join our hearts in tenderness and care.

As the fresh wine cup, the blood of Christ, our new covenant, refreshes our souls, raise us with Jesus to share together the feast of your kingdom.

Anoint us in your Spirit that we might fully live, your people and witnesses of resurrection; in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

OR

Holy God, creator of heaven and earth, we joyfully thank you and praise your name. You formed the universe in your wisdom, and created all things by your power. You set us in families on the earth to live with you in faith. We praise you for good gifts of bread and wine, and for the table you spread in the world as a sign of your love for all people. We praise you, Lord, for sending your only Son Jesus to live among us, full of grace and truth. He made you known to all who receive him.

Sharing our joy and sorrow, he healed the sick, befriended sinners, and showed us the way to everlasting life. Even having taken up his cross and dying that we might live, he overcame death and is risen in power. He is with us still, victorious over every power that can hurt or divide us.

And so, in remembrance of all your mighty acts in Jesus Christ, we take this bread and cup and give you thanks and praise. Pour out your Spirit upon us, that this bread and cup may be for us the body and blood of Christ, and that we, and all who share this feast, may be one with Christ and he with us. Fill us with eternal life, that with joy we may be his faithful people until we feast with him in glory.

 

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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Holy/Maundy Thursday A, B, C

 

April 9

 

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.

 

See earlier entries:

https://lifeinliturgy.wordpress.com/2011/03/29/holy-thursday-year-a/

https://lifeinliturgy.wordpress.com/2012/03/01/more-holy-thursday-april-5/

Liturgy for Maundy Thursday with Tenebrae (Mark)

 

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

Exodus 12:1-4, (5-10), 11-14
Psalm 116:1-2, 12-19
1 Corinthians 11:23-26

John 13:1-17, 31b-35

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Entrance Hymn: Any of the Palm Sunday processional hymns are appropriate, as are several of those from Advent-Christmas. See especially 127, 140, 161-verse 1

Hymn of Invitation: 600, 194

Communion Hymn:   392

Dismissal: This service traditionally ends without music (many churches silence the instruments from this point until Easter Vigil)

Click here for a Hymn for the Eucharist by the Curator: eucharist 5

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 John 13:1-12, 31b-35

 

The feet await the basin, hands,

the cleansing from the dust

and clamor of excited days.

as you kneel down, O Christ.

 

By your anointing, bathing act,

you sanctify your own

and bid us to each other kneel

to bathe the feet in peace.

 

Unlikely as it seems, O Christ,

we fumble to the chore;

we scramble after satiety

to show the world our charm.

 

Yet kneeling at the waiting feet

to set the water there,

the waiting awkwardly begins

a consecrating pause.

 

For at that kneeling pose you bid,

Lord Jesus, we assume;

we understand but slowly yet

that gentle hands caress.

 

CM       Suggested tune: Wiltshire

 

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 116 is on p. 767

 

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 to the upper room,

P: where Christ shared his body and blood.

L: Come to Gethsemene,

P: where he prayed and was betrayed.

L: Come to the courts of justice,

P: where the Righteous One was found guilty.

L: Come to the hill outside Jerusalem,

P: where the innocent suffered and died.

L: Come, let us bow down in awe,

P: for what happened there was done for us.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

Eternal God of mercy, we gather in awesome wonder to behold your loving gift of Jesus Christ, who, coming to bring the world to wholeness, was broken by it. Yet by his death we live and know your unbreakable love. As we gather to remember Christ’s gift of fellowship at table, and to recall our frail failings of devotion, pierce our hearts with a conviction of our own betrayals, reassure us of your abiding presence and transform us by the Spirit of Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Confession of Sin

Forgive us, Lord, for forgetting your sacrifice and for thinking your grace is cheap.  Forgive us, Lord, for using the cross as a trinket, forgetting the agony it represents. Forgive us, Lord, for taking our worship for granted, forgetting the struggle that has assured its freedom.  Forgive us, Lord, for being calloused to human cruelty, forgetting that every victim is a creature of God.  Forgive us, Lord, for being nonchalant about injustice, forgetting that it still nails innocence to the cross.  Forgive us, Lord, for thinking that sacrifice is obsolete, forgetting that we still contend against the powers of darkness.  Receive our prayers offered in all humility, as we remember and honor Christ our Lord who prays for us still.  Amen.

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Loving God, you sent your Son into the world not to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved.  We pray that all who believe in him might be delivered from the power of sin and death, and become heirs with him of everlasting life.

 

Especially this day we pray for those within your community of faith who have offended you by our carelessness, and for those whose weaknesses have kept us from rightly serving you by serving our neighbors.

 

Forgive us our sins and free us for joyful obedience we pray in Christ.  Hear us, God of grace as we pray for a new birth for your church; for its unity in witness and service; for its ministers and all those whom they serve; and especially for those who are about to be baptized and begin new life in your Spirit.  Empower them to face temptation, suffering and even death with the boldness and zeal of true disciples.  Together may we bring to life the gifts you have given for the sake of the mission of your holy church as servant of a dying humanity, we pray in Christ.

 

We pray to you, gracious giver of life, for all who suffer and are afflicted in body or in mind.  For the hungry and the homeless, the destitute and the oppressed.  For the sick and the wounded.  For those in loneliness, fear and anguish, doubt and despair.  For …

 

God our Father, you have invited us to share in the supper which your Son gave to his Church to proclaim his death until he comes: may he nourish us by his presence, and unite us in his love; who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

 

OR

R = silence, or “Lord, have mercy.”

With faith and love and in union with Christ, let us offer our prayer before the throne of grace.

Have mercy on your people, for whom your Son laid down his life: R

Bring healing and wholeness to people and nations, and have pity on those torn apart by division: R

Strengthen all who are persecuted for your name’s sake, and deliver them from evil: R

Look in mercy upon all who suffer, and hear those who cry out in pain and desolation: R

Bring comfort to the dying, and gladden their hearts with the vision of your glory: R

Give rest to the departed and bring them, with your saints, to glory everlasting: R

Let us commend the world, for which Christ died, to the mercy and protection of God.

  Open prayer may be offered and silence is kept.  The Collect and Lord’s Prayer follow.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

God our Father,

you have invited us to share in the supper

which your Son gave to his Church

to proclaim his death until he comes:

may he nourish us by his presence,

and unite us in his love;

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Lord Jesus Christ,

we thank you that in this wonderful sacrament

you have given us the memorial of your passion:

grant us so to reverence the sacred mysteries

of your body and blood

that we may know within ourselves

and show forth in our lives

the fruit of your redemption,

for you are alive and reign, now and for ever.

 

Additional Collect

 

God our Father,

your Son Jesus Christ was obedient to the end

and drank the cup prepared for him:

may we who share his table

watch with him through the night of suffering

and be faithful.

 

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

Almighty Father, whose dear Son, on the night before he

suffered, instituted the Sacrament of his Body and Blood:

Mercifully grant that we may receive it thankfully in

remembrance of Jesus Christ our Lord, who in these holy

mysteries gives us a pledge of eternal life; and who now 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)

John 13:1-17, 31b-35

In mystery your glory dawns, O Lord,

and bathes surprise in wonder yet,

the same as kneeling to the gnarled feet

to bathe them in sincerity and hope.

Ah, Lord: it is in your affront

that we discover how to bend.

Lead us in following the Savior’s bent

unto the gentle sway before the cross.

 

Sending Forth

L: Go forth in peace to walk the way of the cross and resurrection.

P: We are sent in the name of the lord.

L: May Jesus Christ, who was put to death for our sins, bless you and keep you.

P: Amen.

L: May Jesus Christ who was raised to life for our salvation let light shine upon you.

P: Amen.

L: May Jesus Christ be your life and peace, now and forever.

P: Amen. Thanks be to God. 

 

OR

Go forth in confidence, for his chastisement is your peace, and by his stripes you are healed.

 

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.

 

Read Full Post »

Palm/Passion Sunday A

 

April 4

 

In this season of struggling to create worship experiences in the isolation of a pandemic, I recognize that many of you are doing much more creative work than this blog could ever accommodate. But we would love to see links to your work, either shared here or on our lifeinliturgy Facebook Page. Much of what you see here will be from prior postings for Holy Week, and you are encouraged to explore the “Find that Sunday” page for earlier services that may not be linked in this posting.

 

As a parish minister, be assured that I am walking through this with you, and with the whole Church, in prayer that it will be for us an opportunity for growth in deep spirituality and greater commitment to the unity for which Christ prayed.

 

Thank you for your presence here!

 

 

Rev. David T. Chafin, Curator

 

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):

 

Liturgy of the Palms:

Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29
Matthew 21:1-11

 

Liturgy of the Passion:

Isaiah 50:4-9a
Psalm 31:9-16
Philippians 2:5-11
Matthew 26:14 – 27:66 or Matthew 27:11-54

 

Suggested Order of Service

 

Liturgy of the Palms

This assumes that one or the other of the Passion texts will be read during the balance of the service.  If this is not practiced, the following movement could be used without the reading of the Palm text as a Call to Worship and Procession to begin the day. Because many Disciples congregations do not regularly use procession as an act of worship, it is wise to have a leader stand before the congregation to preside for this opening movement, and to have assistance for whomever is processing.  If weather is good, the entire congregation could process from outside the building to their seats.  When children and choir are the only ones processing (which has been the case in many places), it is helpful to have a few adult guides for them.  The editor has also found it helpful for the one giving leadership to “practice” the waving of palms, if they are already in the hands of a seated congregation, during the Greeting, by repeating it a few times, and to try to encourage them to continue to wave them during the entirety of the Processional Hymn.

 

* Blessing of the Palms (for use before the liturgy begins) – Rev. William Flewelling

Be in these hands

wands of joy

to celebrate the One

coming in the name

of the Lord; be here

instruments of faith

beyond the common longing

for our ways; be for us

the wave of abandon

to God’s way of the cross

and the victory of love’s

pure sacrifice in hope!

Amen.

 

* Greeting

L: Hosanna!

P:  Hosanna in the highest!

P: Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!

P:  Hosanna in the highest heaven!

 

Alternate Greetings are included in Call to Worship section below.

 

* Story of the Palms(appointed text for the Palm Sunday liturgy is read and the hymn begins without announcement)

 

* Processional Hymn

 

* Litany of the Palms

L: Crosses of palm unite us in our devotion to Jesus of Nazareth,

and focus our gaze on the King, the Lamb, the Son of God.

P:  On the way to Calvary, palms were waved to honor the King.

L: Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!  Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem!

Behold, your king comes to you, triumphant and victorious is he,

humbled and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.

P:  On the way to Calvary, palms were waved—

        response to One who came to suffer so.

L: He was despised and rejected by others; a man of suffering

and acquainted with infirmity; and as one from whom

others hide their faces he was despised, and we held him of no account.

P:  On the way to Calvary, we take up our crosses,

        and watch this One who rides toward death and life eternal—

        one King, one Lord, one death—for all!

((L: Let us give thanks and rejoice as we join the prayer that Christ taught us:

P:  Our Father…))

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal for Liturgy of the Palms

91 All Hail the Power…

191 Ride On, Ride On in Majesty

192 All Glory, Laud, and Honor

193 A Cheering, Chanting, Dizzy Crowd

129 Lift Up Your Heads, O Mighty Gates

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal for Liturgy of the Passion

Passion Hymns: 195-205 (various)

Communion Hymn: 383 Savior, Thy Dying Love

Dismissal/Missional Hymn: 207 In the Cross of Christ I Glory

 

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 Philippians 2:5-11

 

All the mind of Christ our Savior,

all the thought of his design:

this, Lord God, is ours forever,

evermore your settled lure.

For we, O God, do you adore

as humble Jesus has shown.

 

Make know in us, our Savior, God,

the style of mercy and hope,

the freedom of abandon, grace,

the simple form of hollowed love.

For, in the moment of delight,

we savor all you offer.

 

Indeed, O Lord, we hold our own

the way our Jesus shows us,

demurring on the honors meant

to sate the saving moment

that in completion of your way

we find true humility.

 

Begun with such a mind as this,

a savor of release-love,

we recognize afresh the yield

of life inclined in your sight

to empty pride, access delight

and bend the knee to Jesus.

 

8.7.8.7.8.7.   Suggested tune: Oriel

 

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 118 (portions) are on p. 758

 

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 raise our voices and wave with joyful hope the palms of deliverance of God’s people.

P: Hosanna! Hosanna to the Son of David!

L: Our hearts are filled with expectation as we welcome the coming king.

P: Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!

L: We receive into the crowded streets of our lives the one who is Savior, not only of us, but of all the earth.

P: Hosanna! Hosanna in the highest heaven!

 

OR

L: We gather in the presence of Christ to join our hearts and minds in praise of God.

P:  God has exalted Jesus and given him a name above every name.

L: So let every knee bend, in heaven and on earth, and every tongue confess:

P:  Jesus Christ is Lord.  Glory to God forever!

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: This is a day to let your heart take control of your lips.
P: We can’t keep silent. Our hearts are bursting with praise for Jesus, King of our lives!
L: In spite of the shadow of the cross over the palm-strewn way, Jesus rides in the hearts of those who surrender to him.
P: We commit ourselves wholly to Jesus and ask him to be present in our lives always.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: The way has been prepared.
P: For the crowds it is the way of celebration.
L: For Jesus it is the way of completion
P: Amid shouts and waving palm branches, he comes into the Holy City.
L: Open your hearts this day to receive the Savior.
P: We open wide our hearts and spirits to receive Jesus the Christ.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: Look! He is coming! The King of all creation is riding into Jerusalem!
P: He is seated on a donkey’s back! He does not look like royalty.
L: Yet the crowds cheer and wave branches from the palm trees.
P: Is he riding into a royal welcome or to condemnation?

L: Let us join the celebration and raise our voices to welcome the Lord of Life!
P: Hosanna! Blessed is the One who comes in the name of the Lord. AMEN.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Wave high your palm branches! The Lord of life approaches!
P: Sing with great joy for the Savior has come to us!
L: Even the beast of burden on which he rides seems to be royal.
P: All creation shouts praises to the King of Kings!
L: Hosanna! Hosanna!
P: Blessed is he who comes in the Name of the Lord. Hosanna! AMEN.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Open the gates!
P: Give us courage to walk through!
L: Lay down the cloaks.
P: We mark the journey to Love’s reign.
L: Lift up the branches!
P: Let us boldly proclaim God’s peace!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

We await you, Coming One, with hope and expectation. Draw near to us, your people, and to all the longing people of earth. Reveal yourself again as Savior and Lord, even as we prepare to go with you to the cross and empty tomb that tells the hard story of earth’s salvation. Let us sing again the joy of your coming, and look forward to your reign in our hearts and lives, not only for our own sake, but for the sake of the world which you have redeemed and are redeeming through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

OR

Eternal God of mercy, we gather in awesome wonder to behold your loving gift of Jesus Christ, who, coming to bring the world to wholeness, was broken by it. Yet by his death we live and know your unbreakable love. As we gather to remember Christ’s gift of fellowship at table, and to recall our frail failings of devotion, pierce our hearts with a conviction of our own betrayals, reassure us of your abiding presence and transform us by the Spirit of Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

O Lord God, whose Son followed your will, both as Servant and Savior, and now rules in the hearts of those who accept him as King: Open our hearts to his rule, that we may rejoice in the blessings of his kingdom and share with those who honor him with their lives. In his name, we pray (as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Confession of Sin

Forgive us, Lord, if in the light of Jesus’ concept of kingship we have possessed a distorted concept of power: if we have believed that large congregations and beautiful buildings mean success in the kingdom of God; if we have believed that through pronouncements and political pressure the church brings in the kingdom; if we have believed that Christ is defended with armaments and bombs; if we have equated power in the kingdom with a majority vote in the assembly. Father, forgive us, and teach us the sacrificial nature of Jesus’ kingship.

 

OR

Forgive us, Lord, for forgetting your sacrifice and for thinking your grace is cheap. Forgive us, Lord, for using the cross as a trinket, forgetting the agony it represents. Forgive us, Lord, for taking our worship for granted, forgetting the struggle that has assured its freedom. Forgive us, Lord, for being calloused to human cruelty, forgetting that every victim is a creature of God. Forgive us, Lord, for being nonchalant about injustice, forgetting that it still nails innocence to the cross. Forgive us, Lord, for thinking that sacrifice is obsolete, forgetting that we still contend against the powers of darkness.

 

Words of Assurance

Christ exercises his kingship, not by force or coercion, but by forgiving our sins by his grace, by calming our spirits with his love, and by inspiring our wills by his example. Accept his lordship by going forth in peace.

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Loving God, you taught your disciples love for one another—love which would manifest itself in selflessness and servanthood. Hear the prayer of your people for our world and all who dwell in it.

We lift to you the nations, that they may be rebuilt in justice and in peace, and especially this nation and its leaders. Hear our prayers for the nations.

 

We lift to you this earth, which you so lovingly created, that as stewards of your gifts we might thankfully use its resources for the good of all. Hear our prayers for your creation.

We pray for this city and for cities and villages around us, that all might work together to strengthen and improve the lives of their citizens. Hear our prayers for the cities.

 

We pray for your church—both here in this faith community and around the world—that this season of Lent might be a time of renewal in faith and mission on your behalf, and that together we may learn the path of servanthood toward all humanity. Hear our prayer for your church.

 

We pray for ourselves and our own needs, and the needs of those around us, whose lives are closely linked with our own…   To those who are sick and sorrowful, bring your healing and hope. To the grieving, bring your peace. And to the dying bring the joy of your promise to us of eternity with you. For these and all our prayers we offer you, trusting in your goodness and your strength, in the name and spirit of Jesus the Christ.

 

OR

How we need you anew, each day, O God. Our minds may stray away from what is truly important in search for the things that are seemingly urgent. Yet you keep calling us back to the reality of Christ’s presence with us and are always striving with us to allow his mind to dwell in our midst.

 

Help us to look with his eyes—the eyes of the servant of servants—upon a struggling and hurting world. Let your church regain its mission in him and be helpers to helpless, a home to the homeless, and healers of those whose health has vanished away.

 

We pray especially for those whom we have named this day (________), and others whom we name in our hearts, along with our own needs. Silence

 

Renew us as your people, O God—especially as we enter anew into the paschal mystery of Jesus’ suffering, death and resurrection, that together we may become a fit dwelling place for your Spirit made known in the mind of Christ, for we pray in his name. Amen.

 

OR

Loving God, you sent your Son into the world not to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved. We pray that all who believe in him might be delivered from the power of sin and death, and become heirs with him of everlasting life.

 

Especially this day we pray for those within your community of faith who have offended you by our carelessness, and for those whose weaknesses have kept us from rightly serving you by serving our neighbors.

 

Forgive us our sins and free us for joyful obedience we pray in Christ. Hear us, God of grace as we pray for a new birth for your church; for its unity in witness and service; for its ministers and all those whom they serve; and especially for those who are about to be baptized and begin new life in your Spirit. Empower them to face temptation, suffering and even death with the boldness and zeal of true disciples. Together may we bring to life the gifts you have given for the sake of the mission of your holy church as servant of a dying humanity, we pray in Christ.

 

We pray to you, gracious giver of life, for all who suffer and are afflicted in body or in mind. For the hungry and the homeless, the destitute and the oppressed. For the sick and the wounded. For those in loneliness, fear and anguish, doubt and despair. For …(names)

               Add a concluding collect

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty and everlasting God,

who in your tender love towards the human race

sent your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ

to take upon him our flesh

and to suffer death upon the cross:

grant that we may follow the example of his patience and humility,

and also be made partakers of his resurrection;

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

 

Lord Jesus Christ,

you humbled yourself in taking the form of a servant,

and in obedience died on the cross for our salvation:

give us the mind to follow you

and to proclaim you as Lord and King,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

Additional Collect

 

True and humble king,

hailed by the crowd as Messiah:

grant us the faith to know you and love you,

that we may be found beside you

on the way of the cross,

which is the path of glory.

 

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

Almighty and everliving God, in your tender love for the

human race you sent your Son our Savior Jesus Christ to

take upon him our nature, and to suffer death upon the cross,

giving us the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant

that we may walk in the way of his suffering, and also share

in his resurrection; 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 26:14 – 27:66

Within the strident turn of passion, O Lord,

you implicate the barren charge

with our reluctance, fear, dismay.

Yet evermore, from disconnected haunts

we would allay our taunts

and find our own the offering

in unity and peace.

 

Dismissal

Dismissal

L: Go forth in peace to walk the way of the cross and resurrection.

P: We are sent in the name of the Lord.

L: May Jesus Christ, who was put to death for our sins, bless you and keep you.

P: Amen.

L: May Jesus Christ who was raised to life for our salvation let light shine upon you.

P: Amen.

L: May Jesus Christ be your life and peace, now and forever.

P: Amen. Thanks be to 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

The story is told of an old Sufi prophet, Nasrudin, who was asked by his neighbor to borrow his clothesline. Nasrudin replied, “Sorry, I cannot lend you my clothesline, because I am drying flour on it.” The neighbor yelled, “I didn’t know you could dry flour on a clothesline.” Nasruden explained, “It is amazing how many things can be done with a clothesline when you don’t want to lend it out.”

 

The same is true when it comes to serving wealth instead of serving God. There is no limit to our excuses. But if our desire is strong enough, we can always find the means to serve God. Let it be so in our stewardship giving today and always.

 

Offertory Prayer

As we stand in awe at the foot of the cross, we know that no offering could ever express what we feel. Nevertheless, these gifts symbolize our thanksgiving for what you have done, and they signify our commitment to your unfinished task.

OR

Lord Jesus, you who expressed your kingship not by taking but by giving, not by demanding but by sacrificing – bless us now as we follow your example in the giving of ourselves in these signs of our lives – our tithes and offerings, given in your honor and for the good of the world.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Name above all names, as you emptied yourself for others, we offer ourselves and these gifts as a sign of our hope in your reign. Where there is death, bring life. Where there is sorrow, bring joy. Where there is injustice, bring courage for change. Amen.

 

Invitation to the Table

Jesus said, “I am the bread of life. You who come to me shall not hunger; you who believe in me shall never thirst.” In company with all who hunger for spiritual food, we come to this table to know the risen Christ in the sharing of this life-giving bread.

OR

Beloved of Christ, people shall be gathered from north and south, from east and west to feast at the heavenly banquet of the Lord. Christ our Paschal Lamb has been sacrificed; therefore, let us celebrate the feast. Christ invites to this table all who desire to follow in faith in the days that lie ahead, and to acclaim him Lord. Let us come to the table 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)

 

  1. Redeeming God, you loved the world so much that in the fullness of time, you sent your only Son to be our Savior. He lived among us. To the poor he proclaimed the good news of salvation; to prisoners, freedom; to the sorrowful, joy. To fulfill your purpose, he gave himself up to death; and rising from the grave, destroyed it, making the whole creation new. When the hour had come for him to be glorified by you, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end, and provided for us the gift of himself in the breaking of bread. May we who receive this bread, his body, be strengthened in faith and renewed in the covenant until he comes again.
  2. When we drink this cup, O Lord, we experience anew the presence of Jesus and look forward to his coming in final victory. Send the power of your Spirit upon us gathered here out of 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 may truly be his body, cleansed by his blood. Grant that all who share in these gifts may be one body and one spirit, a living sacrifice in Christ to the praise of your name, until we feast together with all of your people of faith at your heavenly table.

OR

Eternal God, you have created the heavens and the earth, giving breath to every living thing. We thank you for the gifts of creation and for life itself. We thank you for making us in your own image, for forgiving us when we act as though you have no claim on us, and for keeping us in your constant care.

We rejoice in Jesus Christ, the only one eternally begotten by you, born of your servant Mary, who shared the joys and sorrows of our lives. We remember his death and celebrate his resurrection, and in the beloved community of your church, we await his return in final victory.

We take courage from the abiding presence of your Holy Spirit in our midst. We offer you our praise for women and men of faith in every age who stand as witnesses to your love and justice.

Gracious God, we ask you to bless this bread and cup and all of us with the outpouring of your Holy Spirit. Through this meal, make us the body of Christ, the church, your servant people, that we may be salt and light and leaven for the furtherance of your will in all the 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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Transfiguration A

 

Feb. 23

 

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):

 

Exodus 24:12-18
Psalm 2 or Psalm 99
2 Peter 1:16-21

Matthew 17:1-9

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

95 Jesus Shall Reign

22-All creatures of our God and King

90-Come, Christians, join to sing

241 Holy Spirit, Truth Divine

182 Transform Us

390 Lord of Our Highest Love

416-Here, O my Lord, I see thee face to face

 

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 Exodus 24:12-18

Spoken carefully, the Lord calls:

Come up on the mountain to me.

Rise and near this sounding bids us:

come near lonely, and await me.

Thus the Lord who breaks me free says,

the Lord who leads me to abide

God’s will alone to satisfy.

And so we arise, go to wait.

Stirringly the message comes now,

by words that, strident, echo.

Yes, this moment of surmising

leaves the many tarry longing.

All wait as we, too, are waiting,

longing to discover blessing.

Now’s the hour to rise for going,

go attend unto our God’s word.

So we see the climbing higher

entering the clinging cloud bank.

There we find God’s glory shining,

all a wrap of wonder, sheer awe.

In this finer moment balanced

we await and watch the dawning,

how the visitation opens

all the brightness of God’s glory.

8.8.8.8.D    Suggested tune: Schmücke Dich

 

Dealing with the Psalm of the Day:

Since Chalice Hymnal does not provide a complete Psalter, there will be occasions when suggestions may be made for alternate Psalm use (or hymn equivalent). A metrical version of the Psalter, for those Psalms not provided in Chalice Hymnal, is being prepared by Rev. David Chafin. Where practical, these may be offered here as well. You may also want to visit http://lectionarypsalms.org/  

This week: Psalm 99 is on p. 751

 

Concerning the Following Items: Except where otherwise noted, items are created or adapted by the editor. If you are aware of source notations which are missing, please bring them to his attention. No copyright infringement is intended, but is sure to happen.

 

Call to Worship

L: We who have come to follow Jesus hear his voice, calling us to be apart for a little while.

P: We will listen and follow, and open ourselves to new visions.

L: The one who leads us will reveal to us who he is.

P: May our hearts be open to God’s bright glory, shining in the face of Christ the Son!

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Lord, you have called us to the mountaintop.
P: Help us to look forward to where you would have us go.
L: Help us to listen carefully to the words of your healing love.
P: Open our hearts and spirits to receive your glorious directions.
L: Place your trust in the Lord in all your ways.
P: Lord, we have come here to give our lives to you. AMEN.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: It is easy to stand here in the valley of our comfort.
P: We know what to expect and what is expected of us.
L: But Christ calls us to the mountain top to receive a new vision.
P: We are not sure we are ready for that.
L: Place your hope and trust in Christ, for He is your guide.
P: Let us open our hearts to Christ, ready for the vision he places before us.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Will you come to the highest mountain?
P: We come to worship the Lord.
L: Jesus is waiting, waiting to greet you.
P: Jesus, we come. Jesus, we’re here.

L: Come!
P: We come to worship the Lord.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Let the radiance of Christ be evident among us:
P: in our songs and our words;
L: in our deepest thoughts and desires;
P: in the youthful and the experienced, the exhausted and the energetic;
L: in the hungry and the scared.
P: We are here together. We join our voices and our hearts in praise.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: As God called to Moses from the mountain,
P: we are called to be God’s people.
L: As Jesus called the disciples to climb with him to the peak of another mountain,
P: we are called to follow wherever he leads.
L: As the disciples stood in awe at the sound of God’s voice,
P: we are called to worship in wonder and praise.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

L: On mountaintops and in deep valleys,
P: Jesus is the light of the world.
L: On busy city streets and on quiet country lanes,
P: Jesus is the light of the world.
L: At home, at work, at play, and at rest,
P: Jesus is the light of the world. May we see one another in the light of Jesus.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

God of light and truth, you are beyond our grasp or conceiving. Before the brightness of your presence, the angels veil their faces. With lowly reverence and adoring love, we acclaim your glory and sing your praise, for you have shown us your truth and love in Jesus Christ our Savior. Help us to see him more clearly as we gather in his name, and through him to find our way to living faithfully as your children. (for we pray as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

At his baptism, O God, you reminded us that Jesus is your beloved Son with whom you are well pleased. Today we hear your words again, that we are to listen to him, to pay attention. Open our hearts, Lord, to hear his words, to follow in his footsteps, and to serve you in his spirit (for we pray as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Radiant Lord, you shine with purity, power, and truth. Your mercy reflects your compassion, your care, and your love.  Transform us into your image as we seek to follow you. Use us to make your presence known throughout the world (for we pray as Jesus taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Lord, it is good to be here—to hear your word, to share your story. Help us see your Son for who he really is. Help us listen to him, receive his forgiveness, and walk in his light (for we pray as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Holy God, who revealed the Messiah on the mountain, fill us with praise, overflowing with cheers and mysterious visions. Light our way; direct our course; and energize us, for we have one more mountain to climb, through Jesus Christ, who is the light (and who taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

God of the mountaintop and of the plain, we remember today the Transfiguration of Jesus. Glorious, mysterious, and shimmering with light, you know our hearts, our triumphs, and our disasters. Take us as we are; love us as we are; join with us and transform us into your holy ones. (This we pray through Christ our Lord, who taught us to pray, saying “Our Father…”)

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

Holy One, Light of light, God of all creation, long ago you showed yourself to the disciples in Jesus’ transfiguration—his face glowing like a bright, spring morning. Shine in us, around us, and through us, that the world may see your glory in the faces of your people—faces transfigured in the light of your love (for we pray as he taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Transforming God, you have given us a vision of your glory in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Hear us as we bring to you our own lives to be transformed by you through your redeeming presence in the midst of this community. In a world which can so easily become dull to the wonder of your glory, we pray that we would be made salt and light, awakening all of those who come near to us with your Spirit which dwells within us.

Open us to the needs of those who pass our way. Help us to serve you by serving them in the spirit of your Son, who showed us the way to life in its fullness. Give us grace to honor his name in the life which we build together here. To those who hunger, make of us bread; to those who lack shelter, make us to be a home; for those who are lost and lonely, make of us the peace and joy of Christ to them. May we bring hope and a future to those whose lives are growing dim. Hear our prayers for those whose lives are closely linked with our own, which we offer to you silence along with our own needs [a time of silence is kept].

Lead us, Lord, in your righteousness; make your way plain before our faces; for it is you, alone, O God, who make us to dwell in safety. As we hear your word, speak to us once again, and as we receive the gifts of your table, let us experience Christ anew in celebration and praise. Send us forth in your Spirit, we pray, to rejoice in every moment of our lives, for we offer these and all our prayers in Christ’s name.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

We picture the mountain top experience of the disciples, Peter, James and John, chosen to go up to the mountain top with Jesus, to receive a new vision. But it wasn’t what was expected. They were awed and frightened. They didn’t know what to do. One wanted to build special festival booths for Moses, Elijah and Jesus, where people could come to receive healing and blessing. It would have been so easy to stay up on the mountain and never again to descend to the hungering valley below. But Jesus has work for us to do. We are called to receive the blessing, not for ourselves alone, but to give it to others; to offer healing, mercy, forgiveness, compassion, hope and peace. These are difficult things to do in the face of the anger and hostilities that seem to abound in the world. We are not alone. God is with us. Just as we have asked for God’s healing mercies in the prayers we have offered for others, so we are recipients of God’s love and strength. Feel the power of God’s love flooding over you, coursing through your veins, encompassing your spirit! Let God’s strength and hope abide in you. Then be prepared to go and bring that blessing to others, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty Father,

whose Son was revealed in majesty

before he suffered death upon the cross:

give us grace to perceive his glory,

that we may be strengthened to suffer with him

and be changed into his likeness, from glory to glory;

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Holy God,

we see your glory in the face of Jesus Christ:

may we who are partakers at his table

reflect his life in word and deed,

that all the world may know his power to change and save.

This we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Holy God,

you know the disorder of our sinful lives:

set straight our crooked hearts,

and bend our wills to love your goodness and your glory

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

O God, who before the passion of your only begotten Son

revealed his glory upon the holy mountain: Grant to us that

we, beholding by faith the light of his countenance, may be

strengthened to bear our cross, and be changed into his

likeness from glory to glory; 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 17:1-9

Upon the Mount, so lifted up, escaping everything,

O God, you draw us to your pleasure

in facing Jesus in your truth.

Where measurement is failing us,

we stumble into awe.

When instinct writhes to satisfy,

we fumble, fall in fear.

In wonder, now, O God, we rise in silent awe.

 

Service of Table

While all of our congregations navigate the Sacred Board in a different way, it seems, there are common elements in most, which are provided here. We would love to hear if your congregation has variations to these elements which we might address in the future.

 

Offertory / Invitation to Give

The wonderful works of God surround us. How will we show our gratitude? The generosity of God exceeds all our limits. How will our manner of life reflect the abundance of God’s mercy? Surely our offerings are one measure of our response. Let us prepare the Table of the Lord with the fruits of our lives and our labors.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

In days of old, God was seen as far from the people. But we know Christ, and in him we know God. When we share what we have out of love, our hearts grow closer to God, and we shine with Christ’s glory. Let us offer our gifts to God today.

 

OR adapted from ministrymatters.com

We picture the mountain top experience of the disciples chosen to go up to the mountain top with Jesus, to receive a new vision. But it wasn’t what was expected. They didn’t know what to do. It would have been so easy to stay up on the mountain and never again to descend to the hungering valley below. But Jesus has work for us to do. We are called to receive the blessing, not for ourselves alone, but to give it to others; to offer healing, mercy, forgiveness, and compassion.

Just as we have asked for God’s healing mercies in the prayers we have offered for others, so we are recipients of God’s love and strength. God’s love is coursing through your veins. Let us respond to God’s strength and hope within us by bringing forth our tithes and offerings and gifts of compassion. Then be prepared to go and take Christ’s ministry of grace to others.

 

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, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Generous God, it is through your mercy that we have this ministry—the ministry of our talents and treasure, the ministry of our passion and purpose. Strengthen our hearts for your service, and accept the grateful offerings we lay before you. Amen.

 

Invitation to the Table

In revealing a glimpse of God’s glory upon the mountain, Christ prepared his people to bear the challenge and chaos of the days of his passion which was to come. Today, he prepares in us a place of refuge and rest, of glory and wonder, of peace and encouragement in the gifts of this Table. The gift of God for our salvation is Christ himself. The gift of this Table to which he calls us is Christ himself. Let us enter with joy into the mystery of our 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)

 

O God of life and glory, upon the Mountain of Transfiguration you revealed your light within your Son Jesus Christ. As he was drawn into the brilliance of your presence, so draw us now into the wonder of your presence here among us as we receive the bread which he offers, the wine which he pours. Nourish us and send us forth in the power of your Spirit to live faithfully as your beloved children, we pray in the name of Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

OR
from weekofcompassion.org

Gracious God of every time and place, every people and nation, every race and clime, we come to this Table to receive these symbols of your grace, your hope, your sustenance. We come, grateful that you feed us and call on us to help you feed the whole world–body, mind, and soul–with good works of justice and healing. Thank you for that opportunity. We pray, then, that you would bless indeed these elements to our good that we might join you in doing good for this world that you love, this world that yet knows too much pain and hunger and violence. May we go from this Table refreshed and renewed, having drunk deeply from the cup of courage that we might confront all those things that hurt and maim those whom you love. In the holy name of Christ we pray.

 

OR (Great Thanksgiving)

Blessed are you, O God enthroned upon the cherubim, exalted over all your creation: You are our light and our hope in all generations.    We acclaim you, Holy God, for when your people’s minds and hearts were hardened, you never ceased to call to us. When fear and sorrow veiled your glory from our eyes, you continued to call in the voice of your faithful ones in every age, lifting the veil and making your presence known—even to us—in your spirit of freedom.

 

When the time was right, in mercy you spoke to us through your Son Jesus, whom you sent to be our Savior. He walked among us, struggled beside us, ate with us sinners, and called us to a life transformed by your power and grace. Upon the mountain as he prayed with his disciples nearby, he was transformed, and in dazzling light he spoke with your prophets of old concerning the death that he would die. From the cloud, again, you spoke to your people of faith, commending to us your Chosen One.

 

Send your Spirit upon us gathered here out of love for you and for each other, and upon these gifts of bread and wine. Make them to be for us the body of Christ, that we who are being fashioned into his body, cleansed by his blood, may with unveiled faces behold the image of your glory in all your children, be transformed into his likeness, and by your mercy follow in his ministry with our whole hearts and with your commending word.

 

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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