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Lent 2B

 

Feb. 25

 

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:

Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16 Psalm 22:23-31 Romans 4:13-25 Mark 8:31-38 or Mark 9:2-9

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

284-Gather us in

67-O God, our help in ages past

346-Where he leads me

618 How firm a foundation

24 The God of Abraham Praise

608 I would be true

655-Community of Christ

398-Be known to us in breaking bread

 

 

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

 

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

On Romans 4:13-25

 

Instilling us with teeming faith, O God,

you draw us into righteousness with you.

For in your bold capacity, O Lord,

do you entail us in sublime delight.

 

Ah!  Gracious is the manifold of faith,

this folding and refolding into grace,

the way of your enticing mercy, Lord,

as reckoning to righteousness our yield.

 

Indeed, O Savior of this humankind,

in all the flurry of our teeming minds

you plait our thoughts in heart’s supreme abode

to wreath our presence with your gracious care.

 

So surely does our life arise for you,

entwined into your justifying grace,

that we are entertained in entering

our hearts into the rooting grace of faith.

 

10.10.10.10.        Suggested tune: Song 4

 

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 in part is found on p. 732

 

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:  Once again, in this season of Lent, we are summoned by a gracious and merciful God.

P:  We respond to God’s steadfast love, calling us into solemn assembly.

L: Let all the people gather for self‑examination; let all bow in awe before the One Who Creates.

P:  We approach God in reverence and wonder, rejoicing in the invitation to holy places.

L:  Walk humbly before God in secret disciplines, in prayer and fasting and giving.

P:  We seek the One who grants us life, upholding us with a willing spirit.

 

OR

L: When confidence in our way of life is shaken, to whom do we turn for comfort?

P: We look to friends, we cling to loved ones, we grope for answers in familiar, sacred places.

L: How shall we find strength to recover? Where do we find heart and hope to go on?

P: Our hope is in God alone, our Savior, the Shepherd of our Souls, our sheltering Fortress.

 

Alternate Opening Rite (in place of a Call to Worship and Prayer of Approach)

Invitation to Confession

L: My sisters and brothers, as we prepare to encounter God anew today in the gathering of this community, in the hearing of the Word, and in the Breaking of Bread, it is good that we should call to mind our sins, and seek God’s promised forgiveness together.

Silent Prayer 

Responsive Prayer

L: For the poverty of our worship, our unbelief and hesitating witness, our blindness to what you would have us to be and to do, Lord, have mercy.

P: Lord, have mercy.

L: For imagining ourselves to be the center of the world, and for seeking security in the works of our own hands and minds, Christ, have mercy.

P: Christ, have mercy.

L: For the waste of your gifts, and for letting so little of your love pass through us to others by relieving the sufferings and injustices that they endure, Lord, have mercy.

P: Lord, have mercy.

 

Words of Forgiveness

L: God has promised forgiveness of sins to those who repent and turn in faith.  May God keep us in grace by the Holy Spirit, lead us to greater faith and trust, and bring us in peace to eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Creator God, in this time of repentance, we call out for your mercy. Turn us back to you and to the new life Christ restored by his perfect obedience, even to death on a cross. For he lives and reigns as our Redeemer with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. (And now we are bold to pray as he taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

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

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

God who has promised living water to all who will ask has called us to draw near and make our needs, our hopes, our desires known, that we might be transformed, and that our truest desires might be to live in closer communion with Christ and his people. Let us pray.

 

Loving God, you are our hope. We have often lived as though you were so distant, so uninvolved with us, and so aloof. Yet in Christ you have shown us just how near to us you are—walking by our sides, risking all to be near to us—so much that you would come to be our servant, our Savior and our friend.

Hear our prayers for those for whom we should take such risks, as we lift to you the yearnings of our hearts for your creation and its peoples. Help us as stewards of your many gifts to care more diligently for the brokenness of your world. May our lives honor you by caring for the earth and all of your creatures. May we be renewed and reconciled to live in peace with all people.

 

Many and great are the needs of those around us, Lord. Help us to better remember the poor, the homeless, the needy of our world, by serving those of them that live nearby—those we might too easily pass by on the streets. Teach us the meaning of prayer for the lost, the lonely and the grieving through the consolation of our encounters with them in everyday life. Empower us to heal the hurting, the sick and the dying by the touch and the love of Jesus who lives in us, his body.

 

We especially lift to you those dear to us (____) along with our own needs in silence.

Raise up your people again to lives of deeper prayer through more ready service, that we in this community of faith might be joined with Christ in his suffering and in his resurrection, for it is in his name and by his faith that we lift our prayers to you. Amen.

 

OR

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

OR

Loving God, through Jesus Christ you bring light and life to a dark and dying world.  We give you thanks and praise for your love which he reveals to us, even today, and for the hope which his life and death and resurrection unfolds for our world.  Even as you love the world so greatly and sacrificially in Jesus, help us in his spirit to live and to love your world today, especially as we lift to you the lonely, the hurting, the sick and the dying.

 

Where there is injustice, renew our mission to do your will and bring about reconciliation, healing and peace.  Where there is pain, make us agents of your regenerative power and your healing caress.  May we discover and shed abroad your great love among those we encounter who are alone, or grieving or lost.  Make us, as your church, your hands and feet and voice in this world, especially as we pray for those whose lives are closely linked with our own and for the needs we bring with us this day which we offer to you in silence.  (Silent prayer)

 

As we celebrate your presence with us this day and commit ourselves to you afresh within the covenant of your love, help us to be a willing church—ready to do whatever the day demands, in order to bring the joy of your resurrection to those of our world who have no cause to celebrate.  In this Lenten season, awaken us, empower us, renew us, to be faithful to you in the Spirit of Christ.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

you show to those who are in error the light of your truth,

that they may return to the way of righteousness:

grant to all those who are admitted

into the fellowship of Christ’s religion,

that they may reject those things

that are contrary to their profession,

and follow all such things as are agreeable to the same;

through our Lord Jesus Christ,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Almighty God,

you see that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves:

keep us both outwardly in our bodies,

and inwardly in our souls;

that we may be defended from all adversities

which may happen to the body,

and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Almighty God,

by the prayer and discipline of Lent

may we enter into the mystery of Christ’s sufferings,

and by following in his Way

come to share in his glory;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy: Be gracious

to all who have gone astray from your ways, and bring them

again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and

hold fast the unchangeable truth of your Word, Jesus Christ

your Son; 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)

Mark 8:31-38

 

In all our ordinary squirreling ways, O God,

we overhear and fail to understand

the driving our Lord takes unto the cross.

And yet we hear of taking up our cross

and following this life of offering of life

in love for loveless faces.

Grant us that in our living we become

not ashamed of the cross

but knowing the way of the cross

in joy.

 

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 of life is opened for us in the coming of Christ into our world. Every good gift of God is ours to use for the holy purposes of Christ in our world today. Let us give generously of the resources which God has entrusted to us.

 

OR

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

 

Offertory Prayer

All things come from you, O God, and in these gifts we return them in thanksgiving. Receive them, and receive us, as we offer ourselves anew to you in Christ’s name. Amen.

 

OR

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

 

Invitation to the Table

God wants to share this meal with you—all of you who dare to let go of your defenses and your trust in self or others, and trust in God. Let us come to God’s table with hearts of thanksgiving and trust fully in the Christ who invites us all.

 

OR

Christ himself has gathered us, longing to share with us bread and wine at his table.  May these be moments which open our eyes to the mystery of God’s presence with us in the days and nights of our living.  May we be nourished by the gifts set before us so abundantly, and refreshed to live with joy and anticipation of Christ’s coming reign in our world.

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

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

Almighty and ever-lasting God, as we gather to break bread at the table which your Christ has given us, may we be opened anew to his presence in our midst, be nourished to receive the gifts which you pour out upon us so abundantly, and be refreshed to live with joy and anticipation of his coming reign in our world. Pour out your Spirit, we pray, upon this bread and cup. Make them to be for us the body and blood of Christ, that we might be his body, cleansed by his blood, and ready to serve him in newness of life. Through him, with him, and in him, in the power of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor be to you, O God, now and forever.  

 

OR

We praise you, Lord, for sending your only Son Jesus to live among us, to make you known to all who receive him. Sharing our joy and sorrow, he healed the sick, befriended sinners, and showed us the way to fulfillment in partnership with others. He sent his disciples forth with courage to extend your promise of friendship and love, and still he calls us to work in your spirit of love. Even having taken up his cross and dying that we might live, he overcame death and is risen in power. He is still the friend of sinners. We trust him to overcome every power that can hurt or divide us, and believe that when he comes again in glory, we will celebrate victory with him throughout eternity at his heavenly table. Pour out your Spirit upon us and upon these gifts, 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. Through him, with him, and in him, in the power of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor be to you, O God, now and forever.

 

OR

  1. O Universal Love, we offer thanks and praise to you, even in the midst of darkness, for the light and hope of life eternal offered to us in Jesus Christ our Lord.  As we receive the gift of this broken bread, his Body offered for us and for all the world, may our hearts be open to the fullness of your salvation made known to us through his sacrifice for the sake of the world.

 

  1. Send down your Spirit, O God of Life, upon this cup, the new and eternal covenant of Christ’s blood, offered for the salvation of the world.  May we who receive it be blessed with a new awakening to the life eternal, which is ours through your gift of selfless love made known 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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Lent 1B

 

Feb. 18

 

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:

Genesis 9:8-17

Psalm 25:1-10

1 Peter 3:18-22

Mark 1:9-15

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

179-Forty days and forty nights

180-Lord, who throughout these forty days

211-Jesus walked this lonesome valley

565-If you will trust in God to guide you

429 You Satisfy the Hungry Heart

391-These I lay down

612 O Jesus, I Have Promised

 

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 Genesis 9:8-17

 

In the heavens beauty beckons

as the sun arraigns the rain.

There, the bow in splendor arches

circling the wide earth below.

Then remembrance floods the moment,

love divine, compassion reigns

to attain the sacred story,

God’s eternal covenant.

 

As with Noah in the freshness,

once the Ark had settled still,

now the fresh compassion hurries

to complete the promise forged.

In the time of lean perversion,

in the hour of dismal turns,

yet remembering the promise

God arrays the rainbow arch.

 

Now, in this compassion-meadow,

as we satisfy thy call,

come into remembrance ever,

Lord, the lure to honor love.

For in your love we answer hope,

and by your love do we rise,

rise into compassion’s fullness

to abide thy buoyant care.

 

8.7.8.7.D               Suggested tune: Austria

 

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 25 is not in the hymnal. See Call to Worship below.

 

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

 

Call to Worship  (from Psalm 25)

L: To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul.

P: O my God, in you I trust; do not let me be put to shame;

L: Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths.

P: Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all day long.

L: Be mindful of your mercy, O LORD, and of your steadfast love, for they have been from of old.

P: Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for your goodness’ sake, O LORD!

L: Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in the way.

P: God leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.

 

OR

L: Once again, as the season of Lent begins, we are summoned by a gracious and merciful God.

P: We respond to God’s steadfast love, calling us together in praise.

L: Let us bow in awe before the One Who Creates.

P: We approach God in reverence and wonder, rejoicing in the invitation to holy places.

L: Walk humbly before God in secret disciplines, in prayer and fasting and giving.

P: We seek the One who grants us life, upholding us with a willing spirit.

 

Opening Rite

(To be used in place of Call to worship and Invocation, adaptedby the editor from the Tradition)

L:  As we gather as a community of faith to experience anew the love and grace of Christ, and to feast at his table, let us call to mind our frailties, faults, and sins, and offer them to God, trusting in the grace of God alone for forgiveness and freedom.

     (Silent prayer)

L:  O Christ, you came to set the captives free; Lord, have mercy.

P:  Lord have mercy.

L:  You have given yourself fully to live among us; Christ, have mercy.

P:  Christ have mercy.

L:  When rejected, persecuted, and killed upon a cross, you were raised by God; Lord, have mercy.

P:  Lord have mercy.

L:  May almighty God have mercy upon us, forgive us our sins, and lead us toward the joy of life eternal.

P:  Amen.

 

Alternate Opening Rite (Unison prayer below adapted by the editor from Prayers from the Book of Common Order, Church of Scotland, on oremus.org)

Invitation to God’s Forgiveness

Minister: As disciples of Jesus Christ, we are called to struggle against everything that leads us away from the love of God and neighbor.  Repentance, fasting, prayer, study, and works of love help us return to that love.  I invite you, therefore, to commit yourselves to love God and neighbor by confessing your sin and by asking God for strength to persevere in your Lenten discipline.

 

Silent Prayer  (Following a time of silence, Minister: Let us pray together.)

 

Unison Prayer of Confession (unison)

Father in heaven, your love brings life to dead souls, light to darkened minds, strength to weak wills. Help us to believe and trust that no wrong we have done, no good we have failed to do, is too great for you to pardon through the merits of Jesus Christ your Son.  

OR

We confess, Lord, that we have sometimes fallen prey to the temptations our Lord rejected. Unlike the Savior who refused to turn stones into bread, we have misused our powers and positions for personal advantage. Unlike the Savior who refused to leap from the pinnacle of the temple, we have gotten ourselves into precarious situations, then expected God to miraculously save us. Unlike the Savior who refused to bow to Satan, we have compromised our standards in order to make financial gains. May we, like the Christ, recognize temptation for what it is, and reject its subtle attempt to control us.

 

Words of Forgiveness

Minister: God has promised forgiveness of sins to those who repent and turn in faith.  May God keep you in grace by the Holy Spirit, lead you to greater faith and trust, and bring you in peace to eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

(These words may be followed by an “Amen,” by a declaration of absolution – although this is often omitted during Lent in many traditions –  and/or by the Peace)

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Most holy God, whose son began a ministry with disciples and continues that ministry today with responsive followers, make us quick to give of ourselves to be in mission as your church today, that the good news of Christ may bring wholeness in all parts of our world. This we pray in his name (as he taught us to pray, saying, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

God of mercy, as we enter the season of Lent and turn our eyes with Christ’s disciples toward the cross, we ask that we may see clearly the sacrifice you have made for us, and then may we see as clearly the sacrifice we must make for others. Awaken us, God, to turn, to follow, and to serve in Christ’s name (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

Lord of all that is silent and all that is spoken, because our lives are full of detail and deadlines, much to be done and little time in which to do it all, we find few moments in which to savor the beauty of the world, to contemplate the fierce endurance of everything that lives, to enter that timeless realm of divine mystery which surrounds us, entered only in silence. Yet we know that this place exists and is close to us. O God, grant us a glimpse of this inner sanctuary, and the desire and calm to dwell there in prayer.

 

As we (continue/begin) this journey through Lent, help us to make more time for study, and more time for silence, that we may hear your voice in our lives. Open us to hear the words of Jesus in new ways, as they were new to those who first heard them. Challenge us and renew us in this holy season that we may be worthy to be called your children.

 

Hear our prayers for all who are ill and who suffer in these days, especially (___and) those we name to you in silence.

 

Touch them with your peace and help us to be arms of compassion, strength and hope to them.

We ask your peace with all who mourn. May we all have comfort in knowing that indeed you have prepared a place for all who live as your children.

 

Build a road in the deserts of our hearts, O God—a road of worship and thanksgiving—and guide us in our journey of faith in this and every season of our lives, that we might be ever closer to you and to your Son Jesus Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen.

 

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: from Common Worship

In penitence and faith let us make our prayer to the Father and ask for his mercy and grace.

For your holy people, that they may triumph over evil and grow in grace, we pray to you, O Lord: R

For candidates for baptism and confirmation, that they may live by every word that proceeds from your mouth, we pray to you, O Lord: R

For the leaders of the nations, that you will guide them in the ways of mercy and truth, we pray to you, O Lord: R

For the needy, that they may not be forgotten, nor the hope of the poor be taken away, we pray to you, O Lord: R

For the sick in body, mind and spirit, that they may know your power to heal, we pray to you, O Lord: R

For the poor in spirit, that they may inherit the kingdom of heaven and see you face to face, we pray to you, O Lord: R

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

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

 

A Litany (for use any time during Lent, adapted from several sources)

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.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty and everlasting God,

you hate nothing that you have made

and forgive the sins of all those who are penitent:

create and make in us new and contrite hearts

that we, worthily lamenting our sins

and acknowledging our wretchedness,

may receive from you, the God of all mercy,

perfect remission and forgiveness;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Almighty God,

you have given your only Son to be for us

both a sacrifice for sin

and also an example of godly life:

give us grace

that we may always most thankfully receive

these his inestimable gifts,

and also daily endeavour

to follow the blessed steps of his most holy life;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Holy God,

our lives are laid open before you:

rescue us from the chaos of sin

and through the death of your Son

bring us healing and make us whole

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Almighty God, whose blessed Son was led by the Spirit to be

tempted by Satan: Come quickly to help us who are assaulted

by many temptations; and, as you know the weaknesses of

each of us, let each one find you mighty to save; through

Jesus Christ your Son 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 1:9-15

 

As driven by the Spirit who anoints for this, O God,

we find the urgency become our own

to find austerity and know temptation’s slash

that in this hour

in sheer solitude of hope

we find the angels ministering

that we begin to follow him

who leads us in your sight.

 

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

As people who are given great hope in the midst of life’s desert places, we are called to reaffirm our baptismal confession at the Table of the Lord. As we offer our lives anew, let us prepare this Table with offerings of our daily labors, that the world might join us in this hope and faith.

 

OR

Each of us it to look not only to personal interests but also to the interests of others. We come together as the church of Jesus Christ to do this. We are devoted to a mission whose benefits are not for us alone. This is our opportunity to share in important work in this community and around the world.

 

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

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

 

Invitation to the Table (adapted from Alexander Campbell)

The Holy One says: “Why spend money on that which does not satisfy?  Why spend your wages and still be hungry?  Listen to me, and do what I say, and you will enjoy the best food of all.  Listen now my people, and come to me; come to me and you will live.”  Christ invites to this table all who confess him as Lord and seek to follow in his way.  Come to this sacred table, not because you must, but because you may.  Come not because you are fulfilled, but because in your emptiness you stand in need of God’s mercy and assurance.  Come not to express an opinion, but to seek a presence and to pray for a spirit.  Come, then, sisters and brothers, as you are.  Partake and share.  It is spread for you and me that we might again know that God has come to us, shared our common lot, and invited us to join the people of God’s new age.

 

OR

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.

 

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, your Son Jesus Christ endured the harsh desert and the temptation of an easy path to glory, that we who follow him from baptismal waters might be enabled face the struggles and temptations of life in the faith. Help us to find in his example a way toward deeper communion with you. May we experience your presence anew in the breaking of this bread and drinking of this cup. Pour out your Spirit upon them, and upon us, that we might be refreshed in our hope, and made ready to follow the voice of the Savior in our world.

 

OR

O God of mercy, you showed your strength in the midst of trials through the patient endurance of your Son Jesus Christ in the wilderness days of his life. Hear us as we look to you, in the midst of our own wilderness, for strength, sustenance, our daily bread. Send forth your Spirit upon us, Lord, that as we break the bread that you have provided and drink the wine which you have poured out, we may have our spirits strengthened to face what each new day will present to us in this place. Give us the courage of faith to endure temptations and the hope of new life to enrich our joy, as we receive these gifts of Christ’s body and blood, which we offer up to you in his name for your blessing.   Through him, with him, and in him, in the power of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor be to you, O God, now and forever.

 

OR

  1. Holy God, loving Creator, close to us as breath and distant as the farthest star, we thank you for your constant love for all you have made.  We thank you for all that sustains life, for all people of faith in every generation who have given themselves to your will, and especially for Jesus Christ, whom you have sent from your own being to be our Savior.  Bless this bread, and our lives as we receive it, that we may be the body of Christ, and be empowered to live faithfully in his name.
  2. O God, as we praise you for Christ’s birth, life, death and resurrection, and for calling forth your church to continue his mission in the world, we pray that you would bless this fruit of the vine.  Send down your Spirit to us in the drinking of this wine, that our eyes may be opened, and we may recognize the risen Christ in our midst, in each other, and in all for whom Christ died.

 

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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Ash Wednesday

 

Feb. 14

 

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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:

Joel 2:1-2, 12-17 or Isaiah 58:1-12 Psalm 51:1-17 2 Corinthians 5:20b – 6:10 Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

179-Forty days and forty nights

180-Lord, who throughout these forty days

211-Jesus walked this lonesome valley

565-If you will trust in God to guide you

391-These I lay down

 

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 Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21

 

Gently come, behold God’s mercies,

how the subtly lure attends,

how in every secret place we

rise in fragile company.

Here is where we come, our Savior,

here, into thy supple heart,

here, where all of joy surmounts us

till we settle into love.

 

In your generosity, Lord,

you yield in sufficiency.

We come, Lord, to  know devotion

that arouses satiety.

All is here with your delight, Lord;

all is compassed in your love.

here, indeed, within your heart, Lord,

perseverance lurks, sublime.

 

In your all abiding courses,

in your deeply coming force,

here in your sublime embrace, Lord

we attend, attest your grace.

All our treasure we discover

in your victory of cure

as we find your mercies offer

mercy in our gentled hearts.

 

8.7.8.7.D            Suggested tune: Abbot’s Leigh

 

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/   

 

Suggested Parsing of Psalm 51

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love;

According to your abundant mercy, blot out my transgressions.

Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity.

Cleanse me from my sin.

I know my transgressions; my sin is forever before me.

Against you, you alone, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.

So you are just in your sentence, blameless when you pass judgment.

Indeed, I was born guilty, a sinner when my mother conceived me.          

You desire truth in the inward being; therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.

Purge me and I shall be clean; wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.

Let me hear joy and gladness; let my crushed bones rejoice.

Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.

Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit.

            Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will return to you.

You have no delight in sacrifice; a burnt offering would not please you.

The sacrifice you accept is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not reject.

 

 

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: The day of the Lord is coming! The day of the Lord is near!

P: The time is fulfilled: The reign of God is at hand!

L: O people, repent! Believe in the gospel!

P: Come, let us turn and follow the Lord!

 

OR

L: Once again, as the season of Lent begins, we are summoned by a gracious and merciful God.

P: We respond to God’s steadfast love, calling us into solemn assembly.

L: Let all the people gather for self‑examination; let all bow in awe before the One Who Creates.

P: We approach God in reverence and wonder, rejoicing in the invitation to holy places.

L: Walk humbly before God in secret disciplines, in prayer and fasting and giving.

P: We seek the One who grants us life, upholding us with a willing spirit.

 

OR

L: Yet even now, says the Lord, return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning. Rend your hearts and not your clothing.

P: Return to the Lord, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love.

L: Who knows whether he will not turn and relent, and leave a blessing behind him, a grain offering and a drink offering for the Lord, your God?

P: Return to the Lord, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love.

L: Why should it be said among the peoples, “Where is their God?”

P: Return to the Lord, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

Faithful God of life and of all the living, we give you thanks that you have not called us to walk the road to the cross alone. Thank you that you are there with us, and that we have these friends who journey by our sides. Bless our time together in worship, so that we may draw strength from you, be encouraged by your Holy Spirit to go on, and never lose sight of your Son Jesus Christ, our brother and our Lord.

 

OR

Most holy God, your Son came to save sinners; knowing our own humanity and the frailty of life, we come to this season of repentance confessing our unworthiness, asking for new and honest hearts, and the healing power of your forgiveness. Grant this, we pray, through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.

 

OR

We, your people, come to claim your promise of salvation, O reconciling God. In your wholeness, we find healing. In your power, we gain strength. In your love, we are thrust beyond our own concerns to embrace a hurting world. Blow the trumpet, that this solemn assembly may rejoice, that remembrance can bring renewal, through Christ. Amen

 

OR

Holy God, our lives are open before you. Rescue us from the chaos of sin, through the death of your Son bring us healing, and in his resurrection, make us whole, for we wait upon you.

 

A Complete Order of Worship

A Complete Order of Worship

The ancient tradition behind this service goes back to the 10th century, and has always focused on our mortality in solemn word and sign.

            The ashes, made of palm leaves from the previous year’s Palm Sunday worship, recall for us the redemption that is ours through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  In him, we rise from the ashes of mortality to newness of life—redeemed and enabled to serve the world in his name.

 Opening Prayer and Introduction to the Service

            My friends, God has called us to this gathering of solemnity and hope.

             Let us pray:   Almighty and everlasting God, you hate nothing you have made and you forgive the sins of all who are penitent.  Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that, lamenting our sins and acknowledging our mortality, we may receive from you new life, perfect forgiveness and peace, through Christ our Lord.  Amen.

            Today we begin our 40 day journey toward Easter.  We enter the Lenten season to prepare ourselves to welcome the risen Christ with lives renewed by the breath of his spirit.  We begin anew the disciplines of self-examination, confession and penitence.  We dedicate ourselves to meditate upon the scriptures and to converse with God in prayer.  We seek to be more faithful disciples of Christ whose lives are shaped by the one whom we confess to be Lord and Savior of the world. 

            As we begin this season of preparation for the great feast, we mark ourselves with ashes—an act that actually pre-dates the church of Jesus Christ—symbolic of our recognition that we are not gods, but mortals; that we are not good, but are sinners; that we have not yet attained the fullness of our callings in Christ, but are yet on the journey; that we are dust, and that we will return to dust.  Yet God has seen fit not to leave us in the dust, but to raise us with Christ, through baptismal faith, to everlasting life.  To that end, let us join in the responsive reading.

    (Note that additional Psalms, hymns or other music, as well as silent reflection, are appropriate interludes between the readings which follow)

The Old Testament Lesson 

Psalm (may be omitted when Psalm 51 used as act of confession, below)

The Epistle Lesson

The Gospel Lesson

Homily (Optional and brief commentary on one of the texts or the meaning of the day in our life)

Invitation to God’s Forgiveness, and to the Lenten Season

            Dear brothers and sisters in Christ:  Christians have always observed with great devotion the days of our Lord’s passion and resurrection.  It became the custom of the church to prepare for Easter by a season of penitence, fasting and prayer.  This season of 40 days provided a time in which converts to the faith were prepared for baptism into the body of Christ.  It is also a time when persons who had committed serious sins and had been separated from the community of faith were reconciled by penitence and forgiveness, and restored to the fellowship of the church.  The whole congregation is thus reminded of the mercy and forgiveness proclaimed in the gospel of Jesus Christ, and of the need we all have to renew our baptismal faith.

            I invite you, in the name of the Lord, to observe a holy Lent, by self-examination, penitence, prayer, fasting, and acts of charity; and by reading and meditating on the Word of God.  To make a right beginning, and as a mark of our mortality, let us now bow before our Creator and Redeemer in prayer.  Let us pray together.

      OR

            Brothers and sisters in Christ, God created us to experience joy in communion with him, to love all humanity, and to live in harmony with all of God’s creation.  But sin separates us from God, our neighbors, and creation, and so we do not enjoy the life our Creator intended for us.  And by our sin we grieve the Lord, who does not desire us to come under judgment, but to turn to him and live.  As disciples of the Lord Jesus we are called to struggle against all that would lead us away from love of God and neighbor.  Repentance, fasting, prayer and works of love and justice—the disciplines of Lent—help us to confront and by God’s power to overcome the powers of evil.  Lent is also a time to remember and celebrate anew the meaning of our baptisms, and to hear again the gospel call to lives of ministry and grace.  I invite you, therefore, to commit yourselves to these devotions as we enter a time of repentance and communion together, asking God for strength to persevere and to find the light of Christ’s resurrection in the days that lie ahead.

The Blessing Of Ashes

            Let us pray:  God our Creator, you sent your beloved Son, Jesus, to be our  brother. The burden of your love for humankind led him to accept death, death on a cross, so that all people might live. Though we were buried with Christ in baptism and raised up to a new life of freedom, we have not lived fully as your sons and daughters; your reign of love and justice is still not fully manifest in us.   Bless these ashes and your people who are marked by them. Grant that this may be a symbol of our inner renewal, a sign of our change and growth, a first step in our returning home to your love; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord. Amen.

      OR

            Let us pray:  Almighty God, you have created us out of the dust of the earth.  Grant that as we contemplate our mortality, our experience of ashes may be to us the beginning of our new life of repentance and grace, so that we may remember that only by your gracious gift are we given everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Savior.  Amen.

The Imposition Of Ashes

You are invited to come and receive the mark of ashes on your forehead as a sign of your mortality and of God’s promise of new life.

Invitation to Confession (and Forgiveness)

(Pastoral note: In some traditions, words of forgiveness are omitted during Lent from any act of worship, substituting a prayer that God hear our cries for mercy and offer grace.  Absolution is offered here, and discretion is left with pastors and communities with convictions either way.)

            If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sin, God who is faithful and just will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  In humility and faith let us confess our sin to God as we join in the responsive Psalm of confession.

Confession of Sin:  Responsive Psalm 51:1-5, 9-13  (see suggested parsing below)

    (Silent Confession)

The Words Of Forgiveness

            Hear the word of God’s reconciling love toward all.  Through Christ, God chose to reconcile the whole universe, making peace through the shedding of Christ’s blood upon the cross—to reconcile all things, whether on earth or in heaven, through Christ.  Friends, hear and believe the good news….

     L:  …. In Jesus Christ, you are forgiven.

P:  In Jesus Christ, you are forgiven.  Glory to God!   Amen.

The Lord’s Prayer  (we use “sins”)

Celebration of Our Salvation:  The Lord’s Supper

   (Note: The tradition of Ash Wednesday is to offer a penitential time of prayer to God, without the celebration of the Eucharist.  This does not meet the editor’s understanding of the season nor of the nature of the faith in which “all things have become new” – even during Lent.  In communities where the observance of this day allows for the presence of those whose theology does not allow for inter-communion, the omission of Eucharist from the service does allow for full participation of all present, so sensitivity to the body about to be gathered should help the minister in deciding whether or not to offer a celebration of the Supper.  Order offered below allows for the entirety to be presided over by one minister, but table leadership could also be shared with elders, if desired.)

            Invitation

            Hymn

            Thanksgiving and Breaking of the Bread

And now we give you thanks O God, because you give us the spirit of discipline so that we may triumph over evil and grow in grace, as we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery with hearts and minds renewed.  For in these forty days you lead us into the desert of repentance, that through a pilgrimage of prayer we may grow in grace and learn to be your people once again.  Lord Jesus, remember us in your kingdom and teach us to give thanks for your saving and reconciling love, for on the night you were betrayed …  (Words of Institution)

….Give your spirit to us, O Lord, as we receive your gifts and look forward to the fullness of joy that is ours in the resurrection to eternal life.  (BREAK BREAD) 

L: …Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.  Blessed are those who are called to his supper.

P:  Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and I shall be healed.

 

Sharing of Bread and Cup

 

Closing Thanksgiving (unison)

            For the gift of life in Jesus Christ your Son, we give you thanks, O Lord.   For the gift of your scripture, and for this covenant community in which we live them out, we praise you.  For the gifts of signs and sacraments, for seasons and the promises they bring, we rejoice.  Lead us forth by your Spirit to do your will in the coming days, that in Christ we may experience the joy of resurrection as this season comes to full blossom.  Amen.

The Blessing

Holy God, through the discipline of these 40 days, make your spirit’s cleansing fire burn within us.  Lift us from the dying embers of our inattention.  Mark us with the sign of your holy passion.  Make us ready to respond to the call of Jesus Christ.   Make us your very own and bless us with your peace.

 

The Sending Forth

L: Go in peace. Serve the Lord.

P:  Thanks be to God!

            OR

L:  Go forth in the name of Christ  with hearts attuned to God, bearing truthful speech and love, knowing you can neither wander from God’s presence nor be cut off from God’s Holy Spirit.

 P:   We go as God’s forgiven and empowered people to bring reconciliation and peace.

L:  Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless God’s holy name.

P:   Bless the Lord, O my soul, and do not forget all God’s blessings.

 L:  Who forgives all your sins and heals all your infirmities.

P:   Who redeems your life from the grave, and crowns you with mercy  and loving kindness.  Bless the Lord, O my soul.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty and everlasting God,

you hate nothing that you have made

and forgive the sins of all those who are penitent:

create and make in us new and contrite hearts

that we, worthily lamenting our sins

and acknowledging our wretchedness,

may receive from you, the God of all mercy,

perfect remission and forgiveness;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Almighty God,

you have given your only Son to be for us

both a sacrifice for sin

and also an example of godly life:

give us grace

that we may always most thankfully receive

these his inestimable gifts,

and also daily endeavour

to follow the blessed steps of his most holy life;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Holy God,

our lives are laid open before you:

rescue us from the chaos of sin

and through the death of your Son

bring us healing and make us whole

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Almighty and everlasting God, you hate nothing you have

made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent: Create and

make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily

lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness,

may obtain of you, the God of all mercy, perfect remission

and forgiveness; 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)

Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21

 

In intimate collusion with your Spirit, O God,

become in us the flowing wells of peace

and joy, the offering of our oblation

set upon the altar of the heart

that in your timely course

we may be thoroughgoingly alive

and humanly prepared

that we arrive in your delight.

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

Alternate:  Great Thanksgiving for Ash Wednesday

(For some congregations, when the Eucharist is to be offered, Ash Wednesday provides a unique opportunity for an experience of a different kind of presidency by the minister at the Table.  This text is particularly relevant in its content for the congregation as an aid in recalling salvation history.   Only those portions requiring congregational response need to be printed in a worship bulletin, and in fact may be substituted at the beginning with “Let us lift up our hearts and give thanks to the Lord our God.”)

            L: The Lord be with you.

P:  And also with you.

            L: Lift up your hearts.

P:  We lift them up to the Lord.

            L: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

P:  It is right to give God thanks and praise.

Blessed are you, Lord our God, Creator and Sovereign of the universe.  You were God before time began.  You have seen every sun rise, every day begin, since you first gave form to our home, this earth.  You launched it into your universe, shaped its hills, and filled its seas.  You brought life into being, and in time made us in your image, male and female.

            But we were not content with such a paradise.  We rebelled, putting our wills before yours.  Even then, we found you boundless in love.  Time and again, you reached out to us with love and mercy.  You made a covenant to take us to be your people, and we promised to live faithfully with you.  When we failed, you put your words on the lips of women and men who gave themselves to calling us home to you.

            We join with those of all times and places, from the north and the south, from the east and the west, as one voice in praising your name at your feast of love and redemption, even as we remember with thanksgiving your Son Jesus.

            When the time was ready, you sent Christ to be servant of all.  He who is closest to your heart has come to make you known to us.  He performed great signs to reveal your presence with us, and called us in faith to trust your love and obey your calling.

            When his hour had come, he accepted the baptism of death.  By your power, he was raised from the grave.  And having triumphed over death, he continues to make his presence known with us as we await the completion of all things in him.

            On the night…(Words of Institution – but do not break loaf)

When we eat this bread and drink this cup, we know anew the presence of the living Christ and look to the day when we shall feast in his eternal kingdom.  Until then, we pray that you will join this memorial made by your people, bound by earth and time, to the heavenly and timeless offering of Christ himself.  Pour out your Spirit upon us gathered here out of love for you, and upon these gifts of bread and wine.  May these signs of breaking bread and drinking wine together reveal Christ among us, and may your Spirit make us one with Christ, one with each other, and one with you in service throughout the world.  This we pray through your Son Jesus Christ, who taught us to pray boldly, our Father…

 

Breaking of the Bread

Because there is one loaf, we, many as we are, are one body, for it is one bread of which we all partake.

When we break the bread, it is a sharing in the body of Christ.  (Break bread)

When we give thanks over the cup, it is a sharing in the blood of Christ. (Elevate chalice)

These are the gifts of God for all the people of God.   

 

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 »

Transfiguration Sunday

 

Feb. 11

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

2 Kings 2:1-12 Psalm 50:1-6 2 Corinthians 4:3-6 Mark 9:2-9
Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

22-All creatures of our God and King

90-Come, Christians, join to sing

543-Blessed assurance

182-Transform us

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

 

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

 

Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On 2 Corinthians 4:3-6

 

O light of Christ, appear to us,

become before our eyes the tide

that bathes our sight in God’s delight,

a shining of God’s glory known.

 

Because we savor evermore

the freshness you embrace, O Christ,

proclaiming in all innocence

the glory of your holy name,

 

begin in us the echo’s clear

and precious ringing in the night

that by thy glory’s pressing light

we own the dawning past all night.

 

In Jesus, for our Jesus’ sake,

we rise that all may now behold

the risen Christ, the one whose grace

transfigures everything in peace.

 

LM              Suggested tune: Warrington

 

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 97 (alt. Psalm for the day) is on p. 749

 

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

 

Call to Worship  (from Psalm 24)

L: The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it; the world and those who dwell therein.

P: For it was he who founded it upon the seas and planted it firm upon the waters beneath.

L: Who may go up the mountain of the Lord? And who may stand in God’s holy place?

P: Those who have clean hands and pure hearts, who have not set their minds on falsehood and have not committed perjury.

L: They shall receive a blessing from the Lord, and justice from God their savior.

P: Such is the fortune of those who seek God, who seek the face of the God of Jacob.

 

OR

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

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

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

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

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

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

 

OR

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

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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

 

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

 

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

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty Father,

whose Son was revealed in majesty

before he suffered death upon the cross:

give us grace to perceive his glory,

that we may be strengthened to suffer with him

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

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Holy God,

we see your glory in the face of Jesus Christ:

may we who are partakers at his table

reflect his life in word and deed,

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

This we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Holy God,

you know the disorder of our sinful lives:

set straight our crooked hearts,

and bend our wills to love your goodness and your glory

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

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

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

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

strengthened to bear our cross, and be changed into his

likeness from glory to glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord,

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

for ever and ever.  Amen.

 

Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Mark 9:2-9

 

Alone, apart with only closest companions,

does Jesus stand before you, O God,

transfigured in delight beyond imagining.

Begin in our attendance, stunned in awe,

the harrowing of our confusion

toward the hallowing

of your appearing

that in the silence of these hours

we may attend in fluent adoration.

 

Service of Table  

Offertory / Invitation to Give

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

 

Offertory Prayer

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

 

Invitation to the Table

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

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

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

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

 

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 2016.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2016; 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 »

Epiphany 5B

 

Feb. 4

 

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:

Isaiah 40:21-31

Psalm 147:1-11, 20c

1 Corinthians 9:16-23

Mark 1:29-39

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

90 – Come, Christians, join to sing

65-A mighty fortress is our God

606-God whose giving knows no ending

517-Love divine, all loves excelling

385-An upper room did our Lord prepare

428 – An upper room with evening lamps ashine

 

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 (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Isaiah 40:21-31

 

How shall we know the holy way,

the passage of our holy God?

Beyond our faint prescription here,

the telling of the way runs forth.

 

Intent upon the zeal of God,

upon the urgency of hope,

we fumble on a lesser view,

a way where love forever prods.

 

It is your way, O holy God,

to lure our wayward steps by peace,

to cure our dangerous asides

and bring us to your blithe embrace.

 

Ah, in your majesty, O God,

when we in earnest wait for you,

in your delight we rise to run

and pass the weary to delight.

 

LM      Suggested tune: Dunedin

 

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 147, in part, is on p. 767.

 

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

 

Call to Worship  

L: Come, 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!

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

As we worship this morning, O God, we pray that your Spirit will be our strength, your word will be our guide, your love will be our comfort, and your promises will be our hope, through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ (who taught us to pray, “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…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

(from Common Worship)

We pray to the Lord.  In faith we pray.

All: We pray to you, our God.

That the rest of this day may be holy, peaceful and full of your presence: in faith we pray.

All: We pray to you, our God.

That the work we have done and the people we have met today may bring us closer to you:  in faith we pray. All: We pray to you, our God.

That we may hear and respond to your call to peace and justice: in faith we pray.

All: We pray to you, our God.

That you will sustain the faith and hope of those who are lonely, oppressed and anxious: in faith we pray. All: We pray to you, our God.

That you will strengthen us in your service, and fill our hearts with longing for your kingdom: in faith we pray. All: We pray to you, our God.

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

 

OR

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

 

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

 

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

We pray for those whose lives are closely linked to our own_______________and for our own needs, which we offer to you in faith.

 

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

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

you have created the heavens and the earth

and made us in your own image:

teach us to discern your hand in all your works

and your likeness in all your children;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

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

now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

God our creator,

by your gift

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

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

may we who have been nourished at your table on earth

be transformed by the glory of the Saviour’s cross

and enjoy the delights of eternity;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Almighty God,

give us reverence for all creation

and respect for every person,

that we may mirror your likeness

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Set us free, O God, from the bondage of our sins, and give us

the liberty of that abundant life which you have made known

to us in your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; 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 (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Mark 1:29-39

 

Amid the flurry of active care, O God,

remind us evermore of silence

and rejuvenating wells of joy.

For, in this rudimentary excess of life,

it is in loneliness and solitude

that we refresh on your desire,

and follow in the spread of ministry

beyond our fallow doors.

 

Service of Table  

Offertory / Invitation to Give

Jesus said: You are light for the world; you are the salt of the earth.  These are no small commendations from our Lord, and they come with great expectations.  Often, we expect very little of ourselves; but the truth of Christ’s invitation to this Table is one which speaks volumes of God’s investment in us.  We should be quick to answer the call, and ready to offer our best.  Let us bring our best to God as we present our tithes and offerings.

 

Offertory Prayer

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.

 

OR

We offer ourselves to you, O God, in these tokens of our lives.  May they make a practical difference in this world, bringing light and life through Jesus Christ to the darkest and most shadowy places.  Fill us with your Spirit, that our lives may also bear the light of him who gave himself for us, as we go about our daily living in your presence.  Amen.

 

Invitation to the Table

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

 

OR

Christ invites to this Table all who desire to walk in faith with God and in peace with one another.  Here, the very best of God is offered for us, to nourish our lives and encourage our spirits to share with the world the light that is known only in the Savior Christ our Lord.  It is he who invites us.  Let us join together in thanksgiving and praise as we receive his gifts of bread and cup, his body and blood offered that all might have life that is eternal.

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

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

  1. We who gather in your name, O God, give thanks to you for the gift of this bread – fruit of the earth and work of human hands – and pray that for us it might be the bread of life.  Receive our praise, O God, for your abundant gifts, which we offer in union with Christ’s gift of life for us.  Bring us with him to life everlasting.
  2. We bless your name, O God, maker of this gift of wine – fruit of the earth and work of human hands – and pray that it might be for us the cup of our salvation.  Pour forth your Spirit upon us, O God, and upon these gifts; make us anew as your body, living faithfully in your world, as we proclaim Christ’s death until he comes again.

 

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 2016.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2016; 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 »

Epiphany 4

 

Jan. 28

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Deuteronomy 18:15-20

Psalm 111 1 Corinthians 8:1-13

Mark 1:21-28

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

91 – All hail the power of Jesus’ name!

683 – O for a world

187 – Blessed are the persecuted

661 – What does the Lord require of you

659 – What does the Lord require for praise and offering

526 – Though I May Speak

395 – Seed, scattered and sown

404 – A hymn of joy we sing

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 (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On Mark 1:21-28

 

In the haste of your love keep us longing.

In the joy you unfold bring life.

In the mercy of love keep us coming,

keep us following thy holiness.

In the wonder of your coming,

open hearts that we behold your trace.

In the urgency of mission,

open us to find your joy.

 

All the length of our hearts keep us stretching

in the vision of kingdom’s dawn,

that within all the meaning we savor

we discover you in lively flair.

All this wonder of the coming,

all the actions of the Lord our Joy

bring together this occasion

that we flourish in this day.

 

Now, my Lord, in your way press us ever

let us know you are in our hearts.

For immediate is your coming

to adorn us for the light of joy.

Come and enter, come as teaching,

come in full authority of grace

that we savor well the freedom

borne in your fresh healing touch.

 

10.8.10.9, refrain (8.9.8.7.)               Suggested tune: Sing Hosanna

 

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 111 is not in the hymnal. See Call to Worship

 

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  (from Psalm 111)

L: Praise the LORD!

P: Praise the LORD!

L: I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart, in the company of the upright, in the congregation.

P: Great are the works of the LORD, studied by all who delight in them.

L: Full of honor and majesty is God’s work, whose righteousness endures forever.

P: God sent redemption to his people, and has commanded his covenant forever. Holy and awesome is God’s name.

L: The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding.

P: God’s praise endures forever.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

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

 

OR

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…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

O God who makes all things in love, we join to offer thanks to you for the blessings of life in your world, for the gifts of love and friendship, for the joy of family and kinship. Our lives at times reflect your loving presence, and at other times seem loveless and lonely and lost. Yet in all things, you do love us – lavishly and without reservation – and you plant within us the seed for loving others. Nurture that seed within us, we pray. Help us to take the risk of opening our often walled-in hearts to be vulnerable to the other in our lives, and to take the risk of love. May your perfect love, indeed, cast out all fear, and enable us to give ourselves anew to those we encounter on this journey with Christ.

 

Hear our prayers that in those encounters we may more fully share in his ministry of healing, freeing, reconciling love, as we lift up to you a world that is broken and often fearful. We pray for the leaders of government, and for the people who serve to protect us from harm. We pray for those whose decisions affect the lives of many, and those small decisions we may make which could greatly affect a few. We pray for those who feel unloved or unwanted in this world, and for the courage to reach to them with care and compassion, even as we seek to help those who are sick, imprisoned, lonely, lost, and grieving.

 

The faith and hope you have implanted within us, Lord, has much to offer our world, but without the love of Christ abiding in us, we are nothing. So come now and dwell within us. Recreate us as people able to love, and bind us one to another for the sake of all your world. For these and all of our prayers we offer to you in his name.

 

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.   Minister by your Spirit and by us, to all those for whom we have prayed, and help us walk faithfully in the path of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

OR

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.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

God our creator,

who in the beginning

commanded the light to shine out of darkness:

we pray that the light of the glorious gospel of Christ

may dispel the darkness of ignorance and unbelief,

shine into the hearts of all your people,

and reveal the knowledge of your glory

in the face of 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

 

Generous Lord,

in word and eucharist we have proclaimed the mystery of your love:

help us so to live out our days

that we may be signs of your wonders in the world;

through Jesus Christ our Saviour.

 

Additional Collect

 

God of heaven,

you send the gospel to the ends of the earth

and your messengers to every nation:

send your Holy Spirit to transform us

by the good news of everlasting life

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Almighty and everlasting God, you govern all things both in

heaven and on earth: Mercifully hear the supplications of

your people, and in our time grant us your peace; 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 (© 2017, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Mark 1:21-28

 

With immediate intensity, O God,

does Jesus come into our midst,

disturbing everything

upon the rim of your delight.

Amazement sweeps our days

and thus, against contentment

and all the fashions of success,

lead us into the new impression

of Jesus in the depths.

 

Service of Table  

Offertory / Invitation to Give

As Christ calls for us to see the blessedness of life lived in simplicity, we are also called to serve those who are most vulnerable in this world.  A feast has been prepared for those who need it most.  Let us rejoice in the opportunity to participate in that feast by sharing from the wealth of God’s provisions with thanksgiving and hope.

 

Offertory Prayer

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

 

Invitation to the Table

Friends, God prepares a feast for all people; a feast of good things, a feast of peace. It is the longing of God expressed fully when we gather here, for while all of us in this room receive that open invitation of Christ, there are many who are not among us, whose places are set and who have not heard or have not answered “Yes” to God’s call to eat and drink with Jesus.  So, we come and taste.  We eat and are filled.  We drink deeply, and yet we thirst for others to come join us.  And we are nourished in Christ’s spirit to go forth to embrace them, to welcome them, and sit and dine with them at the feast of God which is intended not only for us, but for all.

 

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 rejoice, O God, that you have come to us, revealing yourself in Jesus Christ our Lord. In thankful adoration, Lord, we listen to your Beloved Son. In joy we turn to meet the fullness of your presence borne upon us. In expectation, Lord, we long to learn your searching Holy Spirit in our lives.

 

Your Word reveals in us your coming. And we hear your speaking plainly now over bread our Jesus took and blessed and broke for us, saying: This is my body. We taste your presence spoken in the cup of wine of which Jesus said: This is my blood of the new covenant. Come now, Lord our God, to feed us that we might find within our hearts and, more, within our shared communion your revealing unity in us as in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

OR

Holy God, loving Creator, close to us as breath and distant as the farthest star, we thank you for your constant love for all you have made. We thank you for all that sustains life, for all people of faith in every generation who have given themselves to your will, and especially for Jesus Christ, whom you have sent from your own being to be our Savior. Gifted by the presence of your Holy Spirit, we offer ourselves to you as we unite our hearts with the entire family of your faithful people everywhere.

 

Come, Holy Spirit, come. Bless this bread, and bless this fruit of the vine. Bless all of us in our eating and drinking at this table, so that our eyes may be opened, and we may recognize the risen Christ in our midst, in each other, and in all your children, as we seek to live faithfully as Christ’s body in the world.

 

OR

  1. Loving God, you bless your children in times of sorrow and of joy with your abundant and generous Spirit.  As we break this bread, we pray that you would help us to more clearly see those of our world who are in need, and share your gifts with them as Christ has shared his very life with us.  Bless the bread, we pray, that we who receive it might be strengthened to just such a life.
  2. Pour out your Holy Spirit, O God, upon this cup which we bless and receive in memory of your Son, who poured out his very life for us.  May we be emboldened as we drink to trust you more fully and to venture where you lead us as faithful disciples of our Lord 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 2016.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2016; 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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Epiphany 3

 

Jan. 21: Sunday in Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

 

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:

Jonah 3:1-5, 10

Psalm 62:5-12 1 Corinthians 7:29-31

Mark 1:14-20

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

7 – When in Our Music God Is Glorified

66-Imortal, invisible God only wise

272-The Church’s one foundation

342-Lord, you have come to the lakeshore

594-Dear Lord, and Father of Mankind/Dear God, embracing humankind

595-Be thou my vision

391-These I lay down

395 – Seed, Scattered and Sown

393 – One bread, one body

400-When you do this, remember me

453 – Called as Partners in Christ’s Service

 

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 7:29-31

 

Ah, these appearances design

through every niche and spell of time.

So thoroughly we fumble, Lord,

that in surprise, we seek desire.

 

This world, its forms, its readiness

confuses mysteries and taunts,

the very sort of hopes and fears

that linger here in mute array.

 

Yet in the looking to the Lord,

O Lord, we find reformed in love

the banner of suggested lore.

For in delight we seek your way.

 

Becoming in the moment won,

within the structures we perceive,

there is unfolding in the heart

the newer form of fresh design.

 

LM    Suggested tune: Song 34 (Angels’ Song)

 

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 62: see Call to Worship below

 

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

 

Call to Worship  

from Psalm 62

L: For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him.

P: God alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.

L: On God rests my deliverance and my honor; my mighty rock, my refuge is in God.

P: Trust in God at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.

 

OR

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

OR

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

P: Let us join hearts and voices in praise.

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

P: Let us be united in truth through the same one Spirit.

L: We practice our faith in many different ways.

P: Yet we confess one Lord Jesus Christ.

L: We render different forms of ministry.

P: Yet our calling is one because Christ is undivided.

L: Rejoice, people of God: The Risen Christ is among us, calling us together at his one Table.

P: Praise the Lord!  

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach  

God whose very nature is wholeness and life, we give you thanks that in this holy assembly today you have called together people from different places, of many gifts, and with a multitude of ways of serving and loving. Make us one, Lord, even as you and your Christ are one, as we hear his clarion call to gather in the one body to feast on the word and receive from your hand the blessed gifts of bread and cup. Make us ready, Lord – ready to listen, ready to hear, ready to go and do your will, that we all may be one in essence, in intent, and in constitution, so that the world may know you in and among us. This we pray in the strong name of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Eternal God, you have called us to be members of one body. Join us with those who in all times and places have praised your name; that with one heart and mind, we may show the unity of your church, and bring honor to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Gracious God, we gather this morning in this house of worship which, thanks to your love, is our home away from home. We come to add our human voices to the chorus of praise raised by your creation! We come as we are – distracted and weary, hopeful and open – know that you accept us and are ever mindful of our cares and joys. Still in us now the many voices that clamor for attention, that we might center ourselves upon you. Speak to us in word and melody and quiet, that we may be renewed in our faith and strengthened for your service. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

Loving God, you have gathered your people from the east and west, the north and south, to sit together at a feast of unity and love. As we bring our differing lives and varied gifts together in your Church, help us to see beyond ourselves to the unique community you are shaping us to be, and to the mission for which you are equipping us through the work of your Holy Spirit who makes us one in Christ Jesus our Lord, for we pray in his name.

 

Prayers for Christian Unity  (misc. and unknown sources)

O Lord Jesus Christ, you prayed for your disciples that they might be one.  Look in pity upon the many divisions among those who profess your name, and heal the many wounds which the passions and pride of mortals have inflicted upon your church.  Shed abroad in the hearts of your people the spirit of love, which will break down the walls of separation.  Help us to realize that, as there is in heaven only one holy company abiding in love, so on earth there may be only one holy fellowship of your people abiding in the unity of love and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

We give you thanks, O Lord, for the life and ministry of Jesus, your Child, and for the life and ministry you have opened to us through him.  As this broken bread was scattered on the mountain, but was brought together and became one, so let your church be gathered together into one, that your reign may be known throughout the earth.

 

Great God, you are One, and you bring together what is scattered and mend what is broken.  Unite us with the scattered peoples of earth, that we may become one family of your children.  Bind up our wounds and heal us in spirit, that we may be renewed as disciples of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Friend.

 

MORE:  See the World Council of Churches page

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

See Intercession for Unity: https://lifeinliturgy.wordpress.com/2015/01/07/epiphany-2b-week-of-prayer-for-christian-unity/

OR

In these quieter times, God of peace, as in the busyness of our hectic days, you hear the true prayers of not just what we say, but also what we do and who we are. Hear us as we join our hearts in unity to pray for your church. May we be united in your truth, committed in your love, and sanctified by your grace, that with one heart and one voice we might proclaim your gospel., in word and deed, praising you for your abiding presence in our midst as a community of faith.

 

We pray for our fellow creatures, this world which you lovingly made, and the people of earth with all their diversity and commonality. We lift to you those in our world who weep, and those who cause their weeping; those without food, clothing, shelter or a means of sustaining life with the dignity of one whom you have created. We pray for those who distort the good news of the gospel, who make gods out of things, out of themselves, out of their systems, institutions or structures…and who find it all so hollow and empty.

 

We pray for those who live without meaning and hope, who live as objects of the whims of others, and those who live in broken families, broken communities, and a broken world. Lead your church, we pray, toward a new vision of our mission to them in Christ—the vision of shalom—both those who are afar off in other lands, but also here, where each of us may encounter them personally.

 

Tender and compassionate friend, give us the assurance that you are here among your people, and the gifts of quiet and rest in this celebration of your word and table. Enable us with your guidance to be your church and to do your will in our common life together. Pour out your Spirit on those who are suffering, especially as we lift to you our own needs and the needs of those whose lives are closely linked with our own:__________, and those we name in the silence of our hearts.

 

Bless us to follow in the paths of those saints who have gone before us in faith, whose steps were taken in the sure and certain comfort of your presence, that we may faithfully glorify you now, in your church and your world, forever. For these prayers we offer in the name and spirit of Jesus, your Christ, our Lord.

 

OR

How vast and deep is your love O God, for us and for all the world. As we give you thanks for the beauty of creation and for the gift of life, we turn to you for strength and guidance to help those of our world in need of care and healing.

 

We pray for our community, our nation and world that peace and justice might be made known. We pray for our families and friends, especially those who are hurting, sick, grieving or alone. We pray for our own burdens and needs, both spoken and unspoken…

 

We yield our lives to you as we offer our prayers in the strong and saving name of Jesus.

 

OR

Gracious and loving God, we come to you with hearts that need to be opened to your word and your love. There is so much around us that tears at us and causes us to tremble. Keep us ever mindful of your presence and the hope that you have given us in your Son Jesus Christ.

 

Guide us, we pray, as your church, struggling to spread the good news. Keep us focused on the mission and ministry to which you have called us and lead us forward. We know, Lord, that there will often be bumps and holes in the road along the way. Save us from dwelling on them and make us secure in the goals you have placed before us.

 

Hear our prayers for all who need your tender touch of healing in their lives—those we name before you each day, and those who are known only to you in the depths of our hearts. Be with those who mourn. May we all remember the love and grace that your faithful people have brought to our world.

We pray for all your creation, always at odds with one another. Guide our leaders and those of other nations that this world might truly be as you created it to be—a world of peace, hope and love.

 

These are our prayers, together with those that lie on the hearts of all your faithful people, which we offer to you in the spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ who said “not my will, but thine be done.” Amen.

 

OR

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

whose Son revealed in signs and miracles

the wonder of your saving presence:

renew your people with your heavenly grace,

and in all our weakness

sustain us by your mighty power;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

Almighty Father,

whose Son our Saviour Jesus Christ is the light of the world:

may your people,

illumined by your word and sacraments,

shine with the radiance of his glory,

that he may be known, worshipped, and obeyed

to the ends of the earth;

for he is alive and reigns, now and for ever.

 

Additional Collect

 

God of all mercy,

your Son proclaimed good news to the poor,

release to the captives,

and freedom to the oppressed:

anoint us with your Holy Spirit

and set all your people free

to praise you in Christ our Lord.

 

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

Give us grace, O Lord, to answer readily the call of our

Savior Jesus Christ and proclaim to all people the Good News

of his salvation, that we and the whole world may perceive

the glory of his marvelous works; 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 1:14-20

 

As Jesus comes, O God, and time is fulfilled,

grant us to repent and faith in the gospel of God.

that in the calling of our Lord

we may rise and follow,

leaving behind the incidentals of our lives

for the blossoming of your gospel

in us and through us

all the days.

 

Service of Table  

Offertory / Invitation to Give

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

 

OR

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

 

OR

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

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

 

OR

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

 

Invitation to the Table

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

 

OR

At this table, the church remembers and celebrates the love of God.  The act of sharing bread and wine is a statement of faith and an expression of assurance.  Communion happens in many different ways in different churches throughout the world, and in each place brings a new meaning of life in the Spirit of God that is right for that community.

 

But above all, here believers join themselves to the Lord of life.  Death, which shows itself in sins, injustice, oppression and despair, yields to concrete demonstrations of life which produce peace, justice, hope, liberation and salvation.

 

This meal is an act of expectation.  We, in the midst of our daily lives, proclaim the imminent manifestation of the kingdom of God.  Hope replaces sorrow; joy surpasses tears; the power of life triumphs over the reign of death.  As an act of faith surpassing the limits of time and place, we sing along with John in the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ: “Now God’s home is with mortals!  He will live with them and they shall be his people.  God will personally be with them, and will be their God.  God will wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there will be an end to death.  There will be no more grief nor crying nor pain, for the old order has passed away.”

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

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

  1. Lord, as your servant Jesus took notice of those fishermen long ago, and called to them to follow, we who gather at your table today hear his voice again.  Give us, we pray, a heart of thankfulness for this bread which you have given for that journey, and as we receive it, give us strength to journey on with him into the tomorrows which lie ahead.
  2. Bless, O God, this cup, which is for us the wine of salvation.  Pour forth your Spirit upon it, and upon us as we receive it, that we might be empowered to live faithfully as disciples of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

OR

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

 

OR

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

 

Eucharist for Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (from William Flewelling)

Lord God,

that one Bread of Heaven was broken

and scattered to feed the multitudes

upon the earth.

 

As we come to partake the One Holy Loaf,

feed us and draw us to unity of heart

in Jesus Christ.

Create in us the oneness which embraces

your people in full measured Christian love

and weeps

over our proud division,

stopping us from calling anyone

our brother, our sister.

 

Feed us and make of us your people, Lord God,

gathered in the bread Jesus took for us

and blessed, broke, gave to us:

This is my body.

 

Refresh us and make to flow in our veins

your peace,

as we are set together in the one cup

Jesus gave to us:

This is my blood of the new covenant.

 

By the grace of the Holy Spirit,

fill our lives with the passion of Christ,

a longing to include in our communion

all the peoples loving you,

that our joy may be complete

in Jesus Christ our one Lord.

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 2016.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw August 2016 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2016; 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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