Posts Tagged ‘Ascension ABC’

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Easter 7B

Ascension Sunday

May 20


Ascension Day was May 17, but it is common to use texts from Ascension Day on the last Sunday before Pentecost.  Both sets are provided below, as are other resources for both occasions.


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

For Easter 7 Lessons: Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Acts 1:15-17, 21-26
Roman Catholic reading: Acts 1:15-17, 20-26

Psalm 1
Roman Catholic reading: Psalm 103:1-20

1 John 5:9-13
Roman Catholic reading: 1 John 4:11-16

John 17:6-19
Roman Catholic reading: John 17:11-19

For Ascension Lessons: Click on Scripture Lessons below for study links and resources:

Acts 1:1-11

Psalm 47 or Psalm 93
Roman Catholic reading: Psalm 47:2-9

Ephesians 1:15-23
Roman Catholic reading: Ephesians 1:17-23

Luke 24:44-53

Roman Catholic reading, Year B: Mark 16:15-20

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Hymn of Praise:   233, 93, 699 (Ascension: 91-92, 234)

Hymn of Prayer:  114, 117, 578 

Hymn of Invitation:  582, 538

Communion Hymn:   404 (Ascension: 430)

Dismissal/Missional Hymn:  95, 459

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


Dealing with the Psalm of the Day:

Since Chalice Hymnal does not provide a complete Psalter, there will be occasions when suggestions may be made for alternate Psalm use (or hymn equivalent).  No good ideas here, except a chorus offered for Psalm 47:1, which is in Chalice Hymnal #38. Another significant lacuna, I might add, in the Chalice Psalter.  An adaptation may be found in Call to Worship below.

Hymn of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2012, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On John 17:6-19

                        As Jesus and our God are one

                        so by his prayer are we,

                        becoming in his likeness now

                        the living of his word.

                        Delightfully in his approach

                        we dally in our Jesus

                        that in the fullness of his love

                        we might allow your word.

                        O God, in all you mercy shown,

                        within the passion hewn

                        of love’s excesses, we look up,

                        discover your desire.

                        Your word to Jesus is ours now;

                        he’s given us your truth.

                        And in this unity of love

                        we find our life’s delight.

CM                  Suggested tune: Metzler’s Redhead No.66

Words of Greeting/Call to Prayer  (created or adapted by the editor)

John 17: 1-11

We gather today as Christ’s own people – a redeemed people, a united people, and a commissioned people; for we are redeemed by Christ’s sacrifice, we are united by his love, and we are commissioned by his word.

Call to Worship  (created or adapted by the editor)

Adapted from Psalm 47

L: Clap your hands, all you peoples; shout to God with loud songs of joy.

P:  The Lord Most High, is awesome, a great king over all the earth.

L: God has gone up with a shout, with the sound of a trumpet. Sing praises to God.

P:  Sing praises!

L: Sing praises to our King.

P:  Sing praises!

L: For God is sovereign over all the earth, enthroned above the nations.

P:  Praise God who is highly exalted!

Adapted from Psalm 93

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

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

L: Your throne is established from of old.

P:  You are from everlasting.

L:  The floods have lifted up their roaring voice.

P:  But more majestic than the thunders of mighty waters,

     more majestic than the waves of the sea,

     majestic on high is the LORD!

Prayer of Approach (created or adapted by the editor)

John 17: 1-11

L: The Lord be with you.

P:  And also with you.

L: Let us pray.  Lord, teach us, that we may think your thoughts, Lord, lead us, that we may walk your ways, Lord, fill us, that we may share your Being, Lord, inspire us, that we may advocate your cause, Lord, use us, that we may do your work.  This we pray in the name of Jesus the Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

Intercessions (A framework for prayer for this day, adapted by the editor from Common Worship)

High and holy God, robed in majesty, Lord of heaven and earth, we pray that you will bring justice, faith and salvation to all peoples.  [Especially we pray …

You chose us in Christ to be your people and to be the temple of your Holy Spirit; we pray that you will fill your Church with vision and hope.  [Especially we pray

Your Spirit among us affirms that we are fellow-heirs with Christ and pleads for us in our weakness; we pray for all who are in need or distress. 

In the resurrection of Jesus, you have opened heaven to us and enabled us to share in your glory: the joy of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit from before the world was made.  May your whole Church, living and departed, come to a joyful resurrection in your city of light.

Let us commend ourselves, and all for whom we pray, to the mercy and protection of God. (silence is kept, followed by a concluding collect and/or the Lord’s Prayer)

Concluding Collect:  God, our refuge and strength, listen to the prayers of your children; you yourself have inspired them.  Grant that all our prayers might be made according to your will, and that in faith we might endure with them in the presence of our Advocate, Jesus the Christ.  Amen.

Collect of the Day  from Rev. William Flewelling (© 2012, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

John 17:6-19

        As we have been kept from the throes of the Evil One,

                        O God, keep us now in your ways,

                                        hedged about for good, for mercy.

                        For in this day you open for us

                                        the grandeur of your delight

                                                        and the glorious beauty of our Savior,

                                                                        Christ Jesus.



O God the King of glory,
you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ
with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven:
we beseech you, leave us not comfortless,
but send your Holy Spirit to strengthen us
and exalt us to the place where our Saviour Christ is gone before,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.

Post Communion

Eternal God, giver of love and power,
your Son Jesus Christ has sent us into all the world
to preach the gospel of his kingdom:
confirm us in this mission,
and help us to live the good news we proclaim;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Alternative Collect

Risen, ascended Lord,
as we rejoice at your triumph,
fill your Church on earth with power and compassion,
that all who are estranged by sin
may find forgiveness and know your peace,
to the glory of God the Father.


Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2011.  Compiled by Simon Kershaw October 2011 from the Common Worship Calendar and Lectionaries using Almanac Maker; compilation © Simon Kershaw 2011; 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.  Version 2012-1.2 30 October 2011.  http://almanac.oremus.org/lectionary


Resources from the Jubilee Fund: This stewardship ministry serving the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) offers weekly emails, archived here at the Disciples Center for Faith and Giving Site, for each Sunday’s service.

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. 

Liturgies created by Moira Laidlaw (Uniting Church in Australia) as a part of her doctoral dissertation are often helpful.  Read more here.

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