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Epiphany +6, Ordinary Time 6A

    Week of Compassion (Disciples of Christ)

Feb. 16

 

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

 

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 more resources

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

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

23 – Praise, my soul, the God of heaven

568 – ‘Tis the gift to be simple

284 – Gather us in

288 – O God of vision

578 – I need thee every hour

528 – Give Thanks

393 – One Bread, one Body

420 – I come with joy

429 – You Satisfy the Hungry Heart

420 – I come with joy

 

Suggestions from Week of Compassion for 2020:

Seed, Scattered and Sown / CH 395

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

For the Healing of the Nations / CH 668

In the Bulb There is a Flower / CH 638

Now the Green Blade Rises / CH 230

Spirit / CH 249

For the Fruit of All Creation / CH 714

All Who Hunger, Gather Gladly / CH 419

 

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

 

Dealing with the Psalm of the Day:

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

This week: Psalm 119 is on p. 759

 

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

 

Call to Worship

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

OR

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

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

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

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

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

OR

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

OR

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

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

 

OR (adapted from Common Worship)

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

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org

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

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

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

 

OR

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

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

OR

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

OR

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

LEADER: God of grace and wonder,

PEOPLE: be with us in this place.

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

PEOPLE: be with us in this place.

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

PEOPLE: be with us in this place.

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

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

 

OR

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

 

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

 

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

 

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

 

OR

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

 

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

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

you have created the heavens and the earth

and made us in your own image:

teach us to discern your hand in all your works

and your likeness in all your children;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

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

now and for ever.

 

Post Communion

 

God our creator,

by your gift

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

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

may we who have been nourished at your table on earth

be transformed by the glory of the Saviour’s cross

and enjoy the delights of eternity;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

Additional Collect

 

Almighty God,

give us reverence for all creation

and respect for every person,

that we may mirror your likeness

in Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

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

Mercifully accept our prayers; and because in our weakness

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

grace, that in keeping your commandments we may please

you both in will and deed; through Jesus Christ our Lord,

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

for ever and ever. Amen.

 

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

Matthew 5:21-37

More thoroughly than we conceive, O God,

you lead us to a graciousness of heart

that sweeps away conceit and pride.

O Lord our God, begin in us the style

of your commissioning of love

that we become the bearers of integrity

in all your ways of peace

and difficult compassion’s grace.

 

Service of Table

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

 

Offertory / Invitation to Give

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

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

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

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org

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

 

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

 

Offertory Prayer

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

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

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

 

OR

from weekofcompassion.org

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

 

Invitation to the Table

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

 

OR

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

 

OR

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

 

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

 

Prayer of Thanksgiving (Prayers for Bread and Cup)

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

 

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

 

OR

adapted from weekofcompassion.org

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

 

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

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

 

MORE…

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

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

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

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

 

Common Worship Almanac and Lectionary for the year beginning Advent Sunday 2019. Calendar for 2020

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

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

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

NOTE: We hope you return to this posting often (and are subscribed to the feed by email, on Facebook or your favorite reader), since the content of each week’s posting may change several times before Sunday. We’d also like to include your content, even after the fact, since everything will roll around again in 3 years, and your contributions may find new life in the great cycle of the lectionary. Send your comments or content here.

 

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Epiphany +5, Ordinary Time 5A

 

Feb. 9

 

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

 

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

 

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

Isaiah 58:1-9a, (9b-12)
Psalm 112:1-9, (10)
1 Corinthians 2:1-12, (13-16)
Matthew 5:13-20

 

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

90 – Come, Christians, join to sing

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 (© 2020, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

On 1 Corinthians 2:1-12

 

When unto us the gospel comes,

then we heard weakness trembling.

It was Christ crucified we heard

and only that found echo.

Though we believed and understood,

enough to register pride,

Christ Crucified is all we heard

as all the power showing

 

Repeatedly the word appears

in stark rendition even.

Christ crucified, Christ crucified:

that’s all we recognize yet.

So, in the march to satisfy

our yearning to be bolder,

the apostolic word remains:

Christ crucified defines us.

 

So search us now, majestic God,

with Spirit’s searing effort.

Create the wise, the sacred seer

and we will hear forever.

Christ crucified, Christ crucified,

the stamp of every yearning,

the means to know this dawning age

and your confirming mercy.

 

8.7.8.7.D   Suggested tune: Corvedale

 

OR

On Matthew 5:13-20

 

Exceeding what is called the best,

Lord Jesus show us life;

expanding righteousness, be bold

and echo glory’s lift.

 

Indeed, we find the lamp is lit,

the heart is readied now

that in the moment filled with awe

our light may prove beheld.

 

Creative mystery extols

your majesty, O Lord;

provide in full enticing roles

the practice of your love.

 

Become in us, our holy Lord,

the mystery of love;

that computation of desire

bring justice to abide.

 

Though often, in our eagerness,

we clamor after fear,

provide in us a dearer heart,

an exposé of hope.

 

CM   Suggested tune: St. James

 

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 112 does not appear in Chalice Hymnal

 

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

 

Call to Worship

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

P:  Our mouths will shout forth praise.

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

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

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

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

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: Called by God, we have come to worship.

P: Called by Christ, we have come to follow.

L: Called by the Spirit, we have come to rejoice.

P: Called together, we will listen and pray.

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

L: God said, “Let there be light.”

P: And there was light.

L: Jesus said, “I am the light of the world.”

P: And the light shone in the darkness.

L: Jesus said, “You are the light of the world.”

A: And the light shall not be quenched.

 

Invocation or Prayer of Approach

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

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Invisible God, you have revealed yourself to us in Jesus Christ, sharing your own Spirit in communion with our spirit. As we come to worship disclose yourself more fully as we hear your written word and pray in the Spirit of Jesus Christ (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

OR

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 adapted from ministrymatters.com

Holy God, we gather to sing your praise and hear your word. Speak to us now, that we may be wise enough to perceive your call. Strengthen us now, that we may be brave enough to answer “Yes!” Guide us now, that we may follow where you would have us go. This we pray through Christ our Lord (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Pastoral Prayer – Prayers of the People – Intercessions

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.

 

OR (from ministrymatters.com)

Gracious God, we thank you for the light that shone in Jesus, revealing unto us your holiness and our righteousness. We deplore this gap, yet we rejoice that you chased the darkness that kept it hidden from our eyes. By your light we are both encouraged and condemned. We are reassured to see your face turned in our direction, bidding us to come unto you. But we shudder at the sight of us turning our backs on you, resisting the light that could mirror your glory.

 

We thank you, O God, for leaving your light in the world even though we have not always heeded your summons to become the light of the world. Instead of illuminating your character, we have blurred it. You have commanded us to love you with all our being, but we have consigned our love to the pigeonhole of religion. You have commanded us to love our neighbors as ourselves, but we have been too preoccupied with ourselves to find them. You have called us to be peacemakers, yet we have encouraged the arms makers with our fears and our fortunes. You have summoned us to be wall breakers, yet we have supported the wall makers with our silence and our sympathy. We have seen the light, but we have refused to walk in it.

 

Yet we long, O Lord, to keep your law and do your will. We ask forgiveness for our rebellion, not merely for the sake of the joy we have denied ourselves, but also for the joy we have denied others. Keep ever before us the needs of the world into which you sent Jesus and for whose sake he gave himself to the uttermost. Let us feel its pain as our own, seek its good as our own, and work for its transformation in the name and spirit of him who came into the world not to condemn but to redeem it.

 

We listen now, O God, for your word. Let its message illumine our minds that we may will as Jesus willed. Let its spirit quicken our hearts that we may love as Jesus loved. Let its power speed our steps that we may do as Jesus did.

 

Prayers from Common Worship*

Collect

 

Almighty God,

who alone can bring order

to the unruly wills and passions of sinful humanity:

give your people grace

so to love what you command

and to desire what you promise,

that, among the many changes of this world,

our hearts may surely there be fixed

where true joys are to be found;

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

 

Merciful Father,

who gave Jesus Christ to be for us the bread of life,

that those who come to him should never hunger:

draw us to the Lord in faith and love,

that we may eat and drink with him

at his table in the kingdom,

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

 

Additional Collect

 

Eternal God,

whose Son went among the crowds

and brought healing with his touch:

help us to show his love,

in your Church as we gather together,

and by our lives as they are transformed

into the image of 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 (© 2020, William Flewelling; All rights reserved)

Matthew 5:13-20

Beyond our settlement in pride, O God,

you bring us to attain your peace,

to realize your light

and live your savor in our days.

Bring us in fulness to the crest

of your most thoroughgoing love

that in our lives we may discover

your measure of true righteousness.

 

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

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.

 

OR

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

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.

 

OR

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

 

OR from ministrymatters.com

Increase the strength of these gifts, and the strength of our ministries, O God. Expand the nets of our love, that we may reach deeply and share abundantly. In Christ’s name, we pray.

 

Invitation to the Table

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.

 

  1. 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 2019. Calendar for 2020

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

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

 

Book of Common Prayer (1979), Public domain.

 

NOTE: We hope you return to this posting often (and are subscribed to the feed by email, on Facebook or your favorite reader), since the content of each week’s posting may change several times before Sunday. We’d also like to include your content, even after the fact, since everything will roll around again in 3 years, and your contributions may find new life in the great cycle of the lectionary. Send your comments or content here.

 

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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.

 

Proper 7B/Ordinary 12B/Pentecost 4
June 24, 2012

 

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: 

1 Samuel 17:(1a, 4-11, 19-23), 32-49 or I Samuel 17:57 – 18:5, 10-16
or Job 38:1-11
Roman Catholic reading: Job 38:1, 8-11
United Methodist reading: 1 Samuel 17:(1a, 4-11, 19-23), 32-49

Psalm 9:9-20 or Psalm 133 or Psalm 107:1-3, 23-32
Roman Catholic reading: Psalm 107:23-31
Episcopal reading (RCL): Psalm 9:9-20  or Psalm 133
   or Psalm 107:1-3, 23-32
United Methodist reading: Psalm 9:9-20

2 Corinthians 6:1-13
Roman Catholic reading: 2 Corinthians 5:14-17

Mark 4:35-41

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Hymn of Praise:   64

Gospel Hymn/Hymn of Invitation:   181 (#665 & #602 have good, familiar LM tunes that may be substituted, if needed); 534

Communion Hymn:   405

Dismissal/Missional Hymn:  535

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).  Psalm 133 can be found at page 764.  Psalm 9 text is not in the hymnal and 107 portions quoted in it are not those assigned for the day.

 

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

On 2 Corinthians 6:1-13

 

                        Accept the grace of God in truth

                        and never think you hold in vain.

                        For this moment of our hope is

                        God’s ripe, acceptable time.

                        The burdens of the heart

                        exact their certain pain;

                        we meet them all as true,

                        and kind and lively too.

                        Our hearts are eager for you.

 

                        Intensely wrought by God’s increase

                        we rise to hold our passion.

                        Against the rub of vicious fears

                        we claim our constant, God’s peace.

                        For in the throes of time,

                        as pangs and worries rage,

                        we take again the way,

                        salvation’s day is now:

                        and in the might of God we rise.

 

                        Alive, alert, impelled in love,

                        we gather to rejoice now.

                        Indeed, O God, in your intent

                        we foster joy where woes would breed.

                        O God, we stand by you

                        within this joyous day.

                        We answer your dear call;

                        in Jesus is our thrall.

                        And we are promised ever.

 

 

8.7.8.7.6.6.6.6.7. 

 

Call to Worship  (adapted by the editor)

L: The Spirit of God gave the universe birth.

P:  The Spirit of God delivered the world.

L: Our God is the first; our God is the last.

P:  No other god declares the word of creation.

L: Yet this same God invites us, saying, “Do not be afraid!”

P:  Worship the One who banishes fear, who comforts the trembling and quickens the faint!                              Worship the One whose creation is renewed and whose creatures are never forsaken!

 

Prayer of Approach (adapted by the editor)

L: The Lord be with you.

P:  And also with you.

L: Let us pray.  God of the depths of the sea, as well as of the heavens and earth:  Hear your people’s cry for your presence in our lives.  Awaken us to your Spirit’s power and your ever-willingness to save us when we call to you from the chaos of our lives, even as Jesus heard and saved his friends when they floundered in the storms of yesterday.  You are our God and Savior, the One who will keep us able to face tomorrow’s storms, and we praise you, through Christ our Lord  (who taught us to pray, “Our Father…”)

 

Intercessions (adapted by editor from the Book of Common Order, Church of Scotland)

Mighty and merciful God, may your kindness be known to all. Hear the prayers of all who cry to you; open the eyes of those who never pray for themselves; have mercy on those who are in misery; deal gently with those who sit in darkness; increase the number of those who love and serve you daily. Preserve our land from all things hurtful, preserve our Church from all dangerous error, preserve our people from forgetting that you are their Lord and Saviour.  [Hear our prayers who are close to our minds and hearts this day, which we offer along with our own needs to you in trust and silence…] Be gracious to those countries that are made desolate by war, famine, disease, or persecution, and grant that the course of the world may be so ordered in obedience to your will that the people may live in security and freedom from want, and their children grow up to be makers of peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

 

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

Mark 4:35-41

 

        Against the terrors of the night,

                        the raging of the sudden storm

                                        that threatens to overwhelm us all,

                        you rise and rebuke the rage, O Lord.

                                        And in the faith that knows

                                                        you in our threatened boat,

                                        we learn your steadiness:

                                                        for you alone compose our fright

                                                                        into the peace of all.

 

RESOURCES from COMMON WORSHIP

Collect

Almighty God,
you have broken the tyranny of sin
and have sent the Spirit of your Son into our hearts
   whereby we call you Father:
give us grace to dedicate our freedom to your service,
that we and all creation may be brought
   to the glorious liberty of the children of God;
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

O God, whose beauty is beyond our imagining
and whose power we cannot comprehend:
show us your glory as far as we can grasp it,
and shield us from knowing more than we can bear
until we may look upon you without fear;
through Jesus Christ our Saviour.

Alternative Collect

God our saviour,
look on this wounded world
in pity and in power;
hold us fast to your promises of peace
won for us by your Son,
our Saviour Jesus Christ.

 

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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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.

 

Second Sunday after Pentecost B

Proper 5

June 10

 

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:

1 Samuel 8:4-11, (12-15), 16-20, (11:14-15) or Genesis 3:8-15

Psalm 138 or Psalm 130

2 Corinthians 4:13-5:1

Mark 3:20-35

Suggested Hymns from Chalice Hymnal

Hymn of Praise:   280,

Hymn of Invitation:   538, 577

Communion Hymn:   426

Dismissal/Missional Hymn:  108

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). See Psalm 130 on Chalice p. 762

 

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

On Mark 3:20-35

 

                        Disturbingly did Jesus move

                        in ministering life.

                        Among established prides he probed

                        to gather lonely crowds.

                        For in the mystery of grace

                        the new intrusion comes

                        and lifts unto each lifted face

                        the freedom of our Lord.

 

                        Disturbed, authorities made haste

                        to find a safer way,

                        dispelling with a vagrant word

                        the urgency of Christ.

                        By Spirit of Beelzebul

                        he casts our demons – thus

                        they say to breed dissention there.

                        But Jesus answers plain:

 

                        A house divided does not stand;

                        a strong bound is lost.

                        The kingdom he presents to us,

                        the kingdom of our God

                        remains united as he labors

                        in honor of God’s breath:

                        the blasphemy against Spirit

                        never gains forgiveness.

 

DCM           Suggested tune: Ladywell

 

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

Mark 3:20-35

 

        Your will, O God, bids the answer of our hearts.

                        Bring us, we pray, in the awesome wonder

                                        of your Spirit

                        that we might now and ever attain

                                        the bounty of your delight,

                                        the freedom of your gracious gift,

                                        the unspeakable gentleness of your care

                                                        in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

RESOURCES from COMMON WORSHIP

Collect

O God,
the strength of all those who put their trust in you,
mercifully accept our prayers
and, because through the weakness of our mortal nature
we can do no good thing without you,
grant us the help of your grace,
that in the keeping of your commandments
we may please you both in will and deed;
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

Eternal Father,
we thank you for nourishing us
with these heavenly gifts:
may our communion strengthen us in faith,
build us up in hope,
and make us grow in love;
for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Alternative Collect

God of truth,
help us to keep your law of love
and to walk in ways of wisdom,
that we may find true life
in Jesus Christ your Son.

 

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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The Second Sunday of Epiphany

http://almanac.oremus.org/2011-01-16

Principal Service
Isaiah 49.1-7
Psalm 40.1-12
1 Corinthians 1.1-9
John 1.29-42

Collect  (from Common Worship:   http://www.cofe.anglican.org/commonworship)

Almighty God,
in Christ you make all things new:
transform the poverty of our nature by the riches of your grace,
and in the renewal of our lives
make known your heavenly glory;
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  (from Common Worship:   http://www.cofe.anglican.org/commonworship)

God of glory,
you nourish us with your Word
who is the bread of life:
fill us with your Holy Spirit
that through us the light of your glory
may shine in all the world.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Alternative Collect  (from Common Worship:   http://www.cofe.anglican.org/commonworship)

Eternal Lord,
our beginning and our end:
bring us with the whole creation
to your glory, hidden through past ages
and made known
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Hymn for the Gospel

On John 1:29-42
 
              Behold now, the Lamb of God comes
              striding down
              to the shore,
              there revealing mercies.
              John baptizes in the water.
               Jesus comes
               to baptize
              in the Spirit blazing.
 
              Behold there, the Lamb appearing
               in the midst
              desire forms,
              there revealing glory.
              Spirit freely comes on him, stays
              to expose
              holy truth
              in the standing savior.
 
              Lamb of God, lure us nearer now,
               as you draw
              by your face
              Andrew and another.
              Lamb of God, by simple presence
              call us near:
               Come and see;
              bring along another.
 
8.3.3.6.D                                                     William Flewelling
Suggested tune: Bonn

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity begins Jan. 18.  Visit the World Council of Churches for more information.

Disciples Prayer Focus:  Unity of the Church; Robert Welsh – Council on Christian Unity President; Our Ecumenical Partnerships (in West Virginia, our Ecumenical Dialogues with the Wheeling-Charleston Diocese Roman Catholic Church, and with the West Virginia Annual Conference United Methodist Church

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