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Easter 5B

 

April 29

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Acts 8:26-40 Psalm 22:25-31 1 John 4:7-21 John 15:1-8

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

90 – Come, Christians, join to sing

322-O Word of God Incarnate

453-Called as partners

600-Jesu, Jesu

581-Near to the heart of God

429-You satisfy the hungry heart

 

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

 

Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On John 15:1-8

 

Ah, Vine that nourishes each branch,

include us in your fruitfulness.

As you abide in us, so we

may fruitfully abide in you.

For in our longing to achieve

we would be your disciples yet.

 

The fateful pruning disciplines

that fruitful witness may arouse,

may be the certain evidence

that we are rooted in your stock,

reminded evermore that we

attest the character of grace.

 

No trace of labor lingers yet

save in the common life we share,

the vineyard quality of love

confluent with your earnest plea

that we engage ourselves in you

and answer to thy Vine’s fresh life.

 

8.8.8.8.8.8.              Suggested tune: Vater Unser

 

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 22:25-31 is on p. 733

 

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

 

Call to Worship  

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

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

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

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

L: The living Christ is with us.

P: Praise the Lord!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

O God who holds us all as one, you have given us Christ, your true vine, from which we draw our life and strength.  Send to us a new assurance of your ongoing love and care for us as we gather to praise your name, and open our hearts to receive a fresh surge of your life-giving Spirit that we may be fruitful branches of him who gives himself to us always (and who taught us to pray saying, “Our Father…)

 

or

God of grace, you have given us minds to know you, hearts to love you, and voices to sing your praise. Fill us with your spirit that we may celebrate your glory and truly worship you; through Jesus Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

or

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 (as he taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

or

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

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Center us now, O God, on your presence in this place among your people, as we lift up our hearts desires, our soul’s deep needs, our hungers, fears and failures.

 

As we have often failed to be obedient to your will in our lives as individual disciples and as church, we pray that you will forgive us and enliven us to be and to do the gospel of Christ. Open us to your Spirit’s urgings, and awaken us to live faithfully as your people in a changing, often hurting world.

 

We pray for those around us who need your care, and ask that you would make of us your instruments of healing, peace and redemption. We pray especially for those we have named to you this day, and others we lift to you in the silence of our hearts.

 

Reveal your presence with them and with us, God of life, that as people of renewed faith and vitality, we may be empowered to serve your world, and so give glory to you; for we offer our prayers and our lives in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.

 

or

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

OR

Lord God, we give you thanks for all your gifts to us—for daily food, for health, for each breath we take, for freedom to choose, and for the gifts of your word, your power and your love. Our hearts are truly overwhelmed, O God, when we consider how you have entrusted so much to us. May we be worthy of that trust—may we be a people who are unafraid to live as fully and as richly as you want us to live.

 

Help us, O God, as followers of Jesus, to multiply all that you have given us, to risk spreading your word and perhaps see it misunderstood, to gamble by loving those whom others think worthy only of hate, to take chances by doing good to those who have not done good to us. Help us be faith filled and desire to increase your glory and your goodness in this world. Make us people who share in both word and deed that which you have given to us.

 

We pray for the church gathered today, both here and around the world, that it may encourage all of its members to discover, develop and use all their gifts, those of nature and those of grace.

 

We pray for those who are poor in body or in spirit, for those oppressed and heavy laden, for those sick or in despair, especially___________.   Minister by your Spirit and by us, to all those for whom we have prayed, and help us walk faithfully in the path of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

who through your only-begotten Son Jesus Christ

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

grant that, as by your grace going before us

you put into our minds good desires,

so by your continual help

we may bring them to good effect;

through Jesus Christ our risen Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Eternal God,

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

grant us to walk in his way,

to rejoice in his truth,

and to share his risen life;

who is alive and reigns, now and for ever.

 

Additional Collect

 

Risen Christ,

your wounds declare your love for the world

and the wonder of your risen life:

give us compassion and courage

to risk ourselves for those we serve,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

John 15:1-8

 

As you abide in us, O God,

let us abide in you, discovering in joy

the thoroughgoing majesty

that bears true fruit

to your delight.

For in your gracious way, O God,

are we become the fruitful disciples

of Jesus our Lord.

 

Service of Table  

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

 

Offertory / Invitation to Give

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.

 

OR

Through our offerings, we are invited to put God first in our lives, to show our gratitude and our commitment. We owe everything to God: our lives, our health, people who love us, meaningful work and activities. Let us respond in proportion to our gratitude.

 

OR

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Offertory Prayer

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

 

OR

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.

 

OR

Thank you, God, for this high and holy moment in worship and in life when we have something to give that others need. Take our bread, our witness, our lives to benefit all your human family. May your glory be known among us and in all the world.

 

Invitation to the Table

Christ’s table is spread for all of us—a place of gathering, of fellowship and of praise. Let us rejoice as we respond to God’s gracious invitation to receive these gifts of Christ’s body and blood that we may be strengthened to live as faithful disciples.

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

(The following may be offered as one prayer, or broken between two Elders, if that is the tradition to be followed)

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.  Amen.

 

OR

You, O God, are the source of life for us and for all the world. Your holiness calls to us today, as you called to your people in the life of Jesus Christ. Although many have rejected him, we remember and celebrate his living presence with us.

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

 

OR

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

 

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

 

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

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

 

MORE…

Resources from the Jubilee Fund: This stewardship ministry serving the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) offers weekly emails for each Sunday’s service.  Visit http://www.thejubileefund.com/ to learn more.

Rev. Tim Graves offers Liturgy Bits with valuable, culturally sensitive and creatively contemplative works, well worth your time.

You may also want to visit Worship Connection at MinistryMatters.com, which offers numerous helps, including electronic versions of print resources for worship and preaching planning.

Intercessions and other helpful planning materials geared to the Lectionary (using Roman Catholic version, but normally quite useful for all traditions) for preaching and worship are supplied for several weeks in advance at The Sunday Website of St. Louis University. 

 

Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2017.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.   http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

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 4B

 

Apr. 22

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Acts 4:5-12 Psalm 23 1 John 3:16-24 John 10:11-18

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

275-Christ is made the sure foundation

537-My hope is built on nothing less

558-Savior, like a shepherd lead us

559-All the way my Savior leads me

433-Blest be the tie that binds

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

426-The voice of Jesus calls his people

See also 78, 79, 80 for hymns on Psalm 23

 

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

 

Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On 1 John 3:16-24

 

Adorned by Spirit’s spark of life,

inflected by such holy love

that lays down life for such as we,

we come.  We come for sanctity.

 

Into the name of Jesus faith;

expend in joy life’s brooding care

to thrive in this particular

delight in love’s expenditure.

 

Oh, certainly, we know the call

the way commandment marks our thrall.

Yes, yes: O Lord our Christ, are we

begun in your ripe, holy love.

 

Indeed, this calling you provide,

O Jesus, lures that we abide.

So, in this energy of life,

we thus participate in joy.

 

With wonder, Ah, with awe we rise

to contemplate your truth in love.

We entertain that we might act

in truth of loving unrestrained.

 

LM              Suggested tune: Cromer

 

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 23 is on page 734; hymns 78, 79 80 are also appropriate.

 

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: Open the gate! The Shepherd is coming!

P: We hear his glad voice, calling us by name, leading us to green

     pastures.

L: No stranger voice will we follow. We follow only the One who brings us home.

P: One door, one flock, one fold, one Shepherd. Open the gate! The Good

     Shepherd comes!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

O shepherd God, you have blessed us with peace as tranquil as a flowing stream; peace that nourishes as food and sleep; peace that is stronger than death. You call us to rest in your care that we may live with courage. Though fears beset us, your love will comfort us again. Though death is no stranger, you shall be our last and best friend. We thank you, Shepherd God, for your love that fills us to overflowing, for we pray in the name of Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Almighty God, who sent Jesus, the Good Shepherd, to gather us together, may we not wander from your flock, but follow where he leads us, knowing his voice and staying near, until we are safely in your fold, to live with you forever. This we pray in the name of Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Almighty God, who sent Jesus, the Good Shepherd, to gather us together, receive the praises of your thankful people this day. As we offer ourselves to you that our lives might be re-ordered to meet the days ahead, may we not wander from your flock, but follow where he leads us, knowing his voice and staying near, until we are safely in your fold, to live with you forever. (This we pray in the name of Christ our Lord who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

OR

Loving God, it is you who gave life and breath to everyone in our world, and in you alone can we find life, breath and meaning for ourselves and our world.  For those who have been blessed with an awareness of your shepherding care, who have looked to you for guidance and nurture, we give you thanks, and we pray that you would unite us within your family to be a shepherding influence on others, that they too may enjoy life within your family.

 

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

 

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

Carried upon your shoulders, we find our refuge. In your gentle care we find our home. And in your living Spirit we are united this day, Lord, as we offer to you our prayers in the name of your holy Child, Jesus Christ, the guardian and shepherd of our souls.  Amen.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

whose Son Jesus Christ is the resurrection and the life:

raise us, who trust in him,

from the death of sin to the life of righteousness,

that we may seek those things which are above,

where he reigns with you

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Merciful Father,

you gave your Son Jesus Christ to be the good shepherd,

and in his love for us to lay down his life and rise again:

keep us always under his protection,

and give us grace to follow in his steps;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Risen Christ,

faithful shepherd of your Father’s sheep:

teach us to hear your voice

and to follow your command,

that all your people may be gathered into one flock,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

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

O God, whose Son Jesus is the good shepherd of your people:

Grant that when we hear his voice we may know him who

calls us each by name, and follow where he leads; who, with

you and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever

and ever.  Amen.

 

Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

John 10:11-18

 

O Holy Shepherd, good among your flock,

create in us the satisfaction

of following your care.

As you in love surrender for the sheep,

become in us the knowing of your grace

that we entail your gracious ways

about the gist of 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

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

 

OR

One of the favorite texts of God’s people of faith for centuries lies in the heart of the 23rd Psalm, as we recall, as Isaac Watts interpreted, “Your sure provisions, gracious God, attend me all my days; O may your house be my abode, and all my work be praise.” Indeed, all of our work – whatever we do, and however we do it – can be turned to the praise of God as we begin to know ourselves as stewards of God’s grace. Everything we are and everything we have are the gifts of the most gracious Giver, whose provisions are sure, unending, and generous. May we respond out of hearts of gratitude and love as we bring forth the fruits of our lives and labors.

 

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. Amen.

 

OR

May we follow you, Good Shepherd, not only in plains of comfort but also in valleys of difficulty and in pathways of service. Receive these gifts, we pray, as part of that life of service.

 

Invitation to the Table

Christ the Good Shepherd has prepared a feast for us, even in the presence of our enemies. Indeed, it is offered here, among our friends and strangers and neighbors, week by week, that we might know Christ’s guiding and loving presence, and might be strengthened to share him with the world around us as he calls us each by name. Let us come to the feast of the Risen One.

 

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)

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

You are our shepherd. We praise you.

Holy are you and blessed is your Son Jesus Christ. When the time was right, you, the Creator of all that is, sent him to be a creature like us. Instead of a servant, you sent your own Son that he might be servant of all. He alone, who is closest to your heart, made you known to us. He walked among us, ate with us, showed us his glory in signs, and gave to us this feast of joy to be a symbol of our redemption and the promise of our salvation from sin and death.

You are our shepherd. We glorify you. Glory to you, O Lord Most High.

We ask now that you bless us, as we share this bread and cup, that we might be nourished by that same unbounded love and so be encouraged to be your servants in the world, in the example of our Shepherd, your Son Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, in your holy church: All your people and all your works glorify and honor you, Father, now and forever.

 

OR

  1. We thank you, God that you have provided for all of us who ever were or ever will be by giving yourself to us in love. If we go to the heights of the mountains, or if we make the grave our bed, you are there with us. If we go to the depths of the sea, your right hand holds us securely. Here, in the green pasture of your gathered body, you nourish us with the bread of life. Give us grace to receive this gift with new gratitude.

 

  1. We ask now that you bless us, O God, as we share this cup which you offer, that we might be nourished by your unbounded love, and so be encouraged to be your servants in the world, in the example of our Shepherd, your Son Jesus Christ.

 

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

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

 

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 2017.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.   http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

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 »

Easter 3B

 

April 15

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Acts 3:12-19

Psalm 4 1 John 3:1-7 Luke 24:36b-48  (or 24:13-49)

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

231-Sing of one who walks beside us

636-Abide with me

221-The strife is o’er, the battle done

222-Christ is risen

589-Lord, I want to be a Christian

398-Be known to us in breaking bread

419-All who hunger gather gladly

609-Take my life and let it be

 

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

 

Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Acts 3:1-19

 

By the majesty of Jesus

risen from the three day tomb,

sending freshly out the Spirit

to entice these faithing hearts –

here the touch of Jesus enters,

brings the lame to walk, to leap.

Alleluia! Rise in wonder

to perceive his saving love.

 

Do remember how this Savior

came unto the standing cross,

there to suffer in his passion,

there to die, to rend the day.

Do remember now the rising

by the hand of God alone,

rising for us in victory

showing forth life’s Author’s grace.

 

Beyond the ignorance and shame,

unto urgency to claim

how the moment of the Savior

infiltrates and sets all free:

come unto the call of Jesus,

knowing how he savors you.

Come, come now.  Repent for glory,

wreathe your life in prescient joy.

 

8.7.8.7.D                Suggested tune: Rex Gloriae

 

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 4 is not in the hymnal.

 

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

 

Call to Worship  

L: The Risen One has come alongside us on our journey from the empty tomb.

P: He speaks to us with love and encouragement the word that frees us from our sorrows.

L: A guest among us, he becomes the Host.

P: He makes himself known still today in the breaking of bread.

L: Let us celebrate the promise of life, for Christ is risen.

P: Christ is risen, indeed. Alleluia!

 

OR

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

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

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

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

L: The living Christ is with us.

P: Praise the Lord!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

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

 

OR

You who have created us and sustain us: we come with thanksgiving for these moments when we can ease the pace of our lives and listen for your voice. Create a spirit within us that truly draws us toward you and toward our brothers and sisters; a spirit deep, perceptive, gentle and bold. Clear our minds, open our hearts and touch us with your presence and your power. We offer this prayer in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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.

 

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

 

Almighty Father,

who in your great mercy gladdened the disciples

with the sight of the risen Lord:

give us such knowledge of his presence with us,

that we may be strengthened and sustained by his risen life

and serve you continually in righteousness and truth;

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

 

Living God,

your Son made himself known to his disciples

in the breaking of bread:

open the eyes of our faith,

that we may see him in all his redeeming work;

who is alive and reigns, now and for ever.

 

Additional Collect

 

Risen Christ,

you filled your disciples with boldness and fresh hope:

strengthen us to proclaim your risen life

and fill us with your peace,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

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

O God, whose blessed Son made himself known to his

disciples in the breaking of bread: Open the eyes of our faith,

that we may behold him in all his redeeming work; who lives

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

now and for ever.  Amen.

 

Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Luke 24:36b-48

 

Among us in our confusion, stand, O God,

in Jesus, opening to us the surety

of resurrection peace.

In everything beyond our ken,

create in us the witness soaked in awe

that we endure the suffering

begetting peace and more.

 

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.

 

OR

Through our offerings we affirm God’s leadership. In the letter to the Ephesians we hear this charge: “Be imitators of God, as beloved children, and walk in love as Christ loved us and gave himself for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

 

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. Amen.

 

OR

With hearts of praise, O Lord, we dedicate to you these gifts as tokens of our lives and work. Use them, as you use us, to the fulfilling of your purposes for creation, that we might give glory to you not only in the hearing, but in the doing of your word.

 

Invitation to the Table

As a people who have been reborn by the power of Christ’s resurrection, we are gathered by our loving God to share the gifts of Christ’s table. He has offered himself to us in this meal, and promises to be known in our midst when we gather in his name. The gifts of God are for all the people of God. Let us unite our hearts and minds in this sacrament of memory, of unity, and of love.

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

(The following may be offered as one prayer, or broken between two Elders, if that is the tradition to be followed)

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

 

OR

You, O Lord, have given yourself to us in Jesus Christ our Savior. By his offering of himself for the sake of the world, you have gathered together your Church. Send forth the power of your Holy Spirit upon us gathered here out of love for you, and upon these gifts of bread and wine, which we offer up in unity with Christ’s offering of himself; so that empowered by your grace and enabled by your love, we may be his body in this world, bringing his good news of life to every corner of it. 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.

 

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 2017.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.   http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

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 »

Easter 2B       

 

Apr. 8

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Acts 4:32-35

Psalm 133 1 John 1:1 – 2:2 John 20:19-31

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Any of the Easter hymns are appropriate.

 

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

 

Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On John 20:19-31

 

Barred within the Upper Room

this first day’s evening settling:

there, appearing in the midst,

Jesus offers peace to all.

Hands are shown in wounded form,

side as sliced for all to know.

 

‘Peace be’ is the Savior’s stake,

presses holy peace to each.

There he sends them as he’s sent,

there his confirmation stamps.

All is ready at his call

for these gathered from the pall.

 

Barred again within the Room,

Thomas come as well to share,

there does Jesus show again

all his presence, all this wounds.

There articulating joy,

Jesus owns the opening hour.

 

Thomas, in his bravest find,

knows as all the rest this truth.

O my Lord, and O my God

cries he into the gloom.

Yes, indeed, we answer well

here to know the Savior dwells.

 

7.7.7.7.7.7.      Suggested tune: Heathlands

 

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 133 is on p. 764

 

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

 

Call to Worship  

L: Christ 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.

 

OR

L: 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;

P: Grief has been replaced by joy, and darkness has been dispelled by light!

L: Alleluia! Christ is risen!

P: He is risen, indeed! Alleluia!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

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 us saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

L: 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;

P: Grief has been replaced by joy, and darkness has been dispelled by light!

L: Alleluia! Christ is risen!

P: He is risen, indeed! Alleluia!

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty Father,

you have given your only Son to die for our sins

and to rise again for our justification:

grant us so to put away the leaven of malice and wickedness

that we may always serve you

in pureness of living and truth;

through the merits of your Son Jesus Christ 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 God our Father,

through our Saviour Jesus Christ

you have assured your children of eternal life

and in baptism have made us one with him:

deliver us from the death of sin

and raise us to new life in your love,

in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,

by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Additional Collect

 

Risen Christ,

for whom no door is locked, no entrance barred:

open the doors of our hearts,

that we may seek the good of others

and walk the joyful road of sacrifice and peace,

to the praise of God the Father

.

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

Almighty and everlasting God, who in the Paschal mystery

established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all

who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body

may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith;

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

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

 

Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

John 20:19-31

 

Your peace, O God, is given unto us.

The vision of the risen Lord attests your joy

and tests the wonder in our midst.

O God, by your intention we approach

that by your opening of peace we recognize

our Lord, our God,

and find of life the satisfactory release.

 

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

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.

 

OR

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 (adapted from Rev. Teri Peterson at LiturgyLink)

Jesus met his disciples—women and men, young and old—

and invited them into his new life.

Jesus still meets his disciples—women and men, young and old—

and invites us into his new life.

That new life begins, as any life begins, with water and bread.

At this table, we receive the bread of new life.

At this table, we are called together from many individuals into one body.

At this table, we are strengthened to go answer Christ’s call.

This table is not mine, and it does not belong to this church.

This is not a [sectarian] table.

All of us, no matter who we are, or what we have done, or where we are on life’s journey, are as welcome here as Peter and Joanna and Mary and James were at the first table.

The risen Christ is the host, and he bids us come and celebrate the feast,

to know the power of resurrection, the joy of heaven, the glory of God’s grace.

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

(The following may be offered as one prayer, or broken between two Elders, if that is the tradition to be followed)

Eternal One, who cares for each one of us as if you had no one else to care for, and who cares for all of us even as you care for each, we come here because you have invited us. We recognize at the deepest levels of our beings that it is at this table that we are affirmed and made whole. Send forth your Holy Spirit upon these gifts of bread and wine. In receiving them, enable us to know the presence of the living Christ who reveals himself yet again, the one who calls us to be family, the one in whose presence no other can be called a stranger. Enable us to celebrate the truth 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

Gracious God, who sees through the gloom of our fears and the shades of our doubts, we seek today to see Christ among us here, at the table where he gathers all who hunger and thirst for new life. Today we proclaim our faith anew in Jesus, and look to you for a deeper understanding of how we are to live as people of faith. Pour out your Spirit upon us as we break this bread and as we receive this cup, that in them we may know him afresh, and be revived to serve him not only with our lips, but with our lives. 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.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 2017.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.   http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

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 »

Easter B

 

April 1

 

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.

 

Earlier Entries

Hymns for Early Easter

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

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)

 

Easter Morning

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:

Acts 10:34-43 or Isaiah 25:6-9 Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24 I Corinthians 15:1-11 or Acts 10:34-43 John 20:1-18 or Mark 16:1-8

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

see 215-234; suggested:

Hymn of Praise:   215-226, 228

Hymn of Prayer:    227

Hymn of Invitation:   229, 233

Communion Hymn:   233, 422, 404

Hymn for Easter  from Rev. David T. Chafin (©2013 David T. Chafin; All rights reserved) DOWNLOAD:  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 (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On 1 Corinthians 15:1-11

 

Come reminded of beginning.

how the gospel came alive.

In the rising of the Savior

now apprise the waking hour.

In appearing to the chosen,

Christ assures this dawning day.

 

In the morning exultation ,

in the shining of his face:

thus the coming of this glory

breaks as dawn upon the face.

See him in the boldest moment,

shining as all risen love.

 

First appearing unto Cephas

then the Twelve, then many more,

unto James and all apostle,

lastly unto Paul also –

even to the one untimely

shows our risen Christ our life.

 

Now again in hearts reprising

find the Lord’s appearing shine

in the hearts, upon our faces,

recognize the dawn of love.

Here indeed, in all procession

sweeps the majesty of joy.

 

8.7.8.7.8.7.      Suggested tune: Webbe’s St. Thomas

 

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…”)

 

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.

 

A Collect of the Day (created or adapted by the editor)

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.

 

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 (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Mark 16:1-8

 

Inhabiting the swarming sense of utter awe,

we fumble after recognition, O God.

Beholding the improbable,

observing presence racked in wonder,

attending your immense desire,

we founder in our angst

and shudder in acute astonishment.

 

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

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.

 

OR

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)

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)  from William Flewelling:

(The following may be offered as one prayer, or broken between two Elders, if that is the tradition to be followed)

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.  Amen.

 

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 2017.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.   http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

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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Palm/Passion Sunday B

 

Mar. 25

 

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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):

Liturgy of the Palms

Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29 Mark 11:1-11 or John 12:12-16

 

Liturgy of the Passion

Isaiah 50:4-9a Psalm 31:9-16 Philippians 2:5-11 Mark 14:1 – 15:47 or Mark 15:1-39, (40-47)

 

Liturgy of the Palms

Suggested opening movement of the service, covering the Palm portion of the day’s Gospel

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!

* 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 (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Mark 14:1 – 15:47

 

Upon our Savior’s anguished way,

the passage of dismay,

we hear the sinews sing their lay

upon these weary hearts.

 

Unfolding in the grist of night,

from alabaster jar

to broken bread and readied wine,

the Savior goes to pray.

 

As from the anguished mill of prayer

alone did Jesus rise,

discovered to be handed on,

into the passions seine.

 

Beyond rejection, in the throes

of lonely conflict bare,

did Jesus crucified abide

the sanctions of desire.

 

The women watched the battle rage;

they saw him laid aside,

bewildered to discover grief

accelerate strange hope.

 

CM                Suggested tune: London New

 

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 on page 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  

Call to Worship  

L: Come, let us sing Hosannas to Christ our King.

P: Let us welcome with joy his presence among us.

L: Come, let us worship and bow down,

P: For Christ will reign forever.

L: Hosanna!

P: Hosanna in the Highest!

 

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

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!

 

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 (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

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…”)

 

A litany on “The Mind of Christ”  

 (adapted by the editor from unknown source).

Let us remember Jesus:  Who, though he was rich, for our sakes became poor and dwelt among us;

Who was content to be the child of a poor family;

Who lived the common life, earning his living with his own hands and declining no humble tasks;

Whom the common people heard gladly, for he understood their ways.

Let us remember Jesus:  Who was mighty in deed, healing the sick and afflicted, using for others the powers he would not invoke for himself;

Who was master and Lord to his disciples, yet was among them as their Companion

        and as one who served.

Let us remember Jesus:  Who loved people, yet retired from them to pray, rose a great while before day, watched through the night, stayed in the wilderness, went up into a mountain, sought out a garden;

Who prayed for his tempted disciple,  and for the forgiveness of all who

        rejected him, and for the perfecting of those who received him;

Who observed good customs, but defied conventions that did not serve the purposes of God.   Who hated sin because he knew the cost of pride and selfishness, of cruelty and impurity—the cost to humanity and to God.

            May this mind be in us which was in Christ Jesus.

Let us remember Jesus:  Who, when he was reviled, did not retaliate, and when he suffered did not threaten; who emptied himself and carried obedience to the point of death, even death on the cross.

May this mind be in us which was in Christ Jesus.

Let us pray for Christ to dwell within our hearts.

            O Christ, our only Savior, so come to dwell in us that we may go forth with the light of your hope in our eyes, and with your faith and love in our hearts.  Amen.

 

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

1

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.

 

2

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 (____), and others whom we name in our hearts (silence). Hear the prayers of your people, we pray, for we commend ourselves to you in the name and spirit of Christ.

 

3

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.

 

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 (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Mark 14:1 – 15:47

 

In the throes of the Passion of our Lord, O God,

we turn afresh unto you,

glimpsing the beautiful things

that amaze us, granting wonder.

For, in the fury of disintegrating hopes,

you. O God, entice us with a sight

of profound effects,

the very crest of divine love

illumining severity with grace.

 

Dismissal:

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

We are sent in the name of the Lord.

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

Amen.

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

Amen.

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

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.

 

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)

 

  • 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.
  • 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 2017.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.   http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

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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Lent 5B

 

March 18

 

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:

Jeremiah 31:31-34

Psalm 51:1-12 or Psalm 119:9-16 Hebrews 5:5-10 John 12:20-33

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

595 Be Thou My Vision

277-Christians, we have met to worship

197-Beneath the cross of Jesus

200-What wondrous love is this

612-O Jesus, I have promised

491-As grain on scattered hillsides

108-Lift high the cross

 

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

 

Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Hebrews 5:5-10

 

Appointed to be high priest

and not presuming honor,

did Jesus find his passion

abiding ever.

Indeed, he lifted greatly

his prayers and supplications

to God who can sustain him forevermore.

 

Beyond all exaltation

hear how the voice exclaims him.

Thou art Son, begotten now:

Priest forevermore.

All is bound unto the lure

that our God proclaims is sure,

signaling our great high priest

is Jesus, the order of Melchizedek.

 

This learning of the Savior

is earned in suffered anguish,

the way perfection enters

as salvation’s pledge.

Arousing ears to hear him,

our high priest cures devotion

unto the satiety of God’s provision.

 

7.7.7.5.7.7.11.          Suggested tune: Dambusters’ March

 

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 51 in part is on p. 743

 

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

 

Call to Worship  (from the United Church of Christ)

L: Be still and know that God is.

P: God was, also, in the beginning.

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

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

 

OR

(adapted by the editor from John Berringer)

L: Come, let us use our voices to praise the Lord.

P: Our mouths will shout forth praise.

L: Let us use our minds to ponder the wondrous deeds of God.

P: We will call to mind God’s mighty acts.

L: With all of our strength and being, let us worship the Lord of love.

P: We will worship from our depths. Our souls exult in God!

 

OR

L: Come, friends, and sit with him who cares for family and strangers alike.

P: We gather with the one whose lavish love has been poured out for all.

L: Let us bring to him our best, and pour out our lives as a gift to him.

P: May our hearts be open to the beauty of Christ’s presence as we worship him in spirit and in truth.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Living Christ, your earthly ministry was full of struggle as well as joy; yet you were faithful in following God’s will. Breathe your spirit into our lives, so that we may never fall back from the way of discipleship, or the effort of loving. Grant that we may find true joy and peace as we accept the cost of faithful discipleship, through Jesus Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

God of love, you have loved us first and continue to love us lavishly. We come this morning longing to love you in return. We hunger for your healing love in our lives as we long to love ourselves and our neighbors. Fill our longing hearts as we join together to worship you, so that we may pour out our very lives as an offering of praise and love for you in this world, through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Confession of Sin

L: Let us confess our sins together.

P:   Most holy and merciful God: We confess to you and to one another, and to the whole communion of saints in heaven and on earth, that we have sinned by our own fault in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone.

L: We have not loved you with all our heart, and mind, and strength. We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We have not forgiven others as we have been forgiven.

P: Have mercy on us, O God.

L: We have been deaf to your call to serve as Christ served us. We have not been true to the mind of Christ. We have grieved your Holy Spirit.

P: Have mercy on us, O God.

L: We confess to you, O God, all our past unfaithfulness. The pride, hyposcrisy, and impatience in our lives,

P: Our self‑indulgent appetites and ways and our exploitation of other people,

L: Our anger at our own frustration and our envy of those more fortunate than ourselves,

P: Our intemperate love of worldly goods and comforts and our dishonesty in our daily life and work,

L: Our negligence in prayer and worship and our failure to commend the faith that is in us,

P: Accept our repentance, O God, for the wrongs we have done. For our neglect of human need and suffering and our indifference to injustice and cruelty,

L: For all false judgments, for uncharitable thoughts toward our neighbors, and for our prejudice and contempt toward those who differ from us,

P: For our waste and pollution of your creation and our lack of concern for those who come after us,

Restore us, O God, for your mercy is great.

P: Amen.

 

OR

Gracious God, our sins are too heavy to carry, too real to hide, and too deep to undo. Forgive what our lips tremble to name, what our hearts can no longer bear and what has become for us a consuming fire of judgment. Set us free from a past we cannot change; open us to a future in which we can be changed; and grant us grace to grow more and more into your likeness and image; through Christ our Lord.

 

Words of Assurance

Lay down your burdens. Give up your sinful ways, and accept the warmth of God’s love, for we have been forgiven, and in Christ are made new again. Look up with hope and live.

 

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

With all our hearts and minds let us pray to the Lord, responding to my words “Lord in your mercy,” with “hear our prayer.”

  • For the peace of the world, for the welfare of the church of God, and for the unity of all peoples, Lord in your mercy, R
  • For the leaders of the nations and those who have responsibility for ordering the lives of our homes and communities, and all those who are charged with the care and nurture of others, Lord in your mercy, R
  • For the poor and oppressed, for those unemployed and destitute, and for prisoners and captives, and those who remember and care for them, Lord in your mercy, R
  • For those who are sick and suffering whose lives are dear to us, especially ______ and those we name before you in our hearts, Lord in your mercy, R
  • For the faithful who have gone before us and are at rest, we give thanks, and pray that you will comfort and guide us as a community and as individuals to better serve as Christ would lead us.

 

OR

Mighty and merciful God, giver of grace and goodness, we come as grateful children this day. We come confessing that we are not always grateful to you or as gracious to others we encounter in the twists and turns of our lives. We thank you that you have promised your forgiveness to us as we place our trust in you. Hear our prayers that we might be forgiven, renewed and restored to a fuller life—the life you have shown us in Jesus the Christ.

 

And hear our prayers for the people you have called to be your church throughout the world. May we together become what you would have us be in fulfillment of Christ’s mission. Help us to lead the way in justice and peace, to help the poor, the sick, the hungry, the oppressed, and those in prison and other kinds of trouble. Help us to serve those who surround us as we would serve Jesus.

 

We pray, O Lord, for those who seek you or who seek to draw closer to you, that they may find you and be found by you. We pray for those near to us in their needs, as we have named them this day, and for those we name in our hearts, and for our own needs.

 

We praise you, O God, for you give us grace to glorify you with our whole lives, through the power and strength of Jesus the Christ.

 

OR

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. (silence)

 

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. (silence)

 

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. (silence)

 

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. (silence)

 

We pray for ourselves and our own needs, and the needs of those around us, whose lives are closely linked with our own…   (silence)

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.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Most merciful God,

who by the death and resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ

delivered and saved the world:

grant that by faith in him who suffered on the cross

we may triumph in the power of his victory;

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 have taught us

that what we do for the least of our brothers and sisters

we do also for you:

give us the will to be the servant of others

as you were the servant of all,

and gave up your life and died for us,

but are alive and reign, now and for ever.

 

Additional Collect

 

Gracious Father,

you gave up your Son

out of love for the world:

lead us to ponder the mysteries of his passion,

that we may know eternal peace

through the shedding of our Saviour’s blood,

Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Almighty God, you alone can bring into order the unruly

wills and affections of sinners: Grant your people grace to

love what you command and desire what you promise; that,

among the swift and varied changes of the world, our hearts

may surely there be fixed where true joys are to be found;

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 (© 2018, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

John 12:2—33

 

O God, indeed we would see Jesus,

behold the Lord Jesus in hope

as we discover his hour

approaching in full truth.

Begin in us the insight leading us to sight

whereby we behold the Lord

and, seeing Jesus, live.

 

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

Through our offerings we identify with the cause of Christ. We proclaim our concern for all people, and we name them all as our next of kin. We identify with their suffering and grief and we rejoice when good comes to them. God gives both our material resources and our personal time and effort to us. Let us now extend them through the body of Christ into this moment of history and into the whole world.

 

OR

The apostle writes: “My sisters and brothers, I implore you by God’s mercy to offer your very selves to God; a living sacrifice, dedicated and fit for God’s acceptance, the worship offered by mind and heart. Adapt yourselves no longer to the pattern of this present world, but let your minds be remade and your whole nature be transformed. Then you will be able to discern the will of God, and know what is good, acceptable and perfect.

 

Offertory Prayer

We bring our gifts to you, and offer them as symbol of sacrifice and service. We seek to share the story of suffering love that fulfills and conquers death. Bless these gifts and all who give; use our wealth, our time, our abilities for the good of all your people, O Lord.

 

Invitation to the Table

When we as people of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ commune together, our sense of true community is enhanced. When we meet Jesus at his table, class, culture, race, language, economic status and educational achievements are all transcended. Here is a paradox, in our diversity we find unity, when we share the Lord’s bread.

 

Let us approach this time of communion and community not only sharing the bread and wine, but also sharing ourselves, our hopes, our faith, our history and our future. Let the people of God come to share the bread and witness a miracle: The great truths of our faith intersect with the realities of the world around us, and we see anew how God is at work in our world.

 

Come and hear in the recesses of our souls, Christ’s call to here and now, at this table, share his bread so that we may be refreshed and empowered as his people to remember him and therefore live for him. Thus we become a part of the miracle we witness. Let us share the bread in unity and remembrance.

 

OR

In God’s Son Jesus Christ we have received assurance that in giving all we receive everything, that in dying to self we will live, and that in following him we will come to know God fully. As we receive at Christ’s Table the fruits of God’s self-giving in the bread broken and the cup poured out for all, may we find new power for living in his name and in his mission.

 

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)

Loving God, in your Son Jesus Christ we have received assurance that in giving all we receive everything, that in dying to self we will live, and that in following him we will come to know you. As we receive at his Table the fruits of your self-giving in the bread broken and the cup poured out for all, we pray that you would pour out your Spirit upon us, and upon these gifts, that we might find new power for living in the name and spirit of him who was made perfect in suffering, Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

OR

  1. O God, you bring life from death and raise up all who trust in you. As we break this bread, offered in love for you for all your people, may it be for us the Bread of Life. Strengthen us to live as resurrected people, we pray.
  2. Spirit of God, you join the broken of our world back together, and raise us up as a people to give praise to you. Pour out your life-giving breath upon us as we receive this cup, the Blood of Christ, our hope and our salvation. Raise us with him to serve you all our days in Christ’s name.

 

OR

Holy God, we praise and bless you for creation and the gift of life; and for your abiding love which brings us close to you, the source of all blessing. We thank you for revealing your will for us in the giving of the law and the teaching of the prophets.

 

We thank you especially that in the fullness of time you sent Jesus, born of Mary, to live in our midst, to share in our suffering, and to accept the pain of death at the hands of those whom he loved. We rejoice that in a perfect victory over the grave, you raised Christ with power to become sovereign in your realm.

 

We celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit to gather your church by whom your work may be done in the world, and through whom we share the gift of eternal life. With the faithful in every place and time, we praise with joy your holy name.

 

Send the power of your Spirit upon us and upon these gifts of bread and wine, that they may be for us Christ’s body and blood, and that we might be for the world Christ’s body, until at last we feast with him and all your people at the table of unending joy.

 

 

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 2017.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2017; Almanac Maker © Simon Kershaw 2010.   The Revised Common Lectionary is copyright © the Consultation on Common Texts 1992.  The Daily Eucharistic Lectionary is adapted from the Ordo Lectionum Missae of the Roman Catholic Church reproduced by permission of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy.  Adaptations and additions to the RCL and the DEL, together with Second and Third Service lectionaries and the Weekday Lectionary for Morning and Evening Prayer are copyright © the Archbishops’ Council 1997-2010.   http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

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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