All posts by Erin Grainger

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Second Sunday after Pentecost

Centering Words
“Hope is a state of mind independent of the state of the world. If your heart’s full of hope, you can be persistent when you can’t be optimistic. You can keep the faith despite the evidence, knowing that only in so doing has the evidence any chance of changing.” -William Sloane Coffin

Prelude “Halifax” – G.F. Handel

THE PREPARATION

Lighting our Candles
If you have a candle, let us light our candles together to remind ourselves that there is light in the darkness and that we can share that light with one another in our own times of darkness and we can share that light of love with the world. Please light your candles if you have one as we enter into our time of worship.

A moment of silence

Welcome and  Announcements

Opening Hymn: Bunessan

This popular Gaelic traditional melody has the lyrics “Morning Has Broken” by Eleanor Farjeon, which were written in 1931 and are not in the public domain. If you know the words, you may sing them aloud or in your head!

Morning Prayer
Startle us, O God, as you startled the prophets and disciples long ago with new ideas, new openness, new acceptance and love, which transcend old traditions and ancient barriers.
Startle us with a love that transcends even our own long-held assumptions.
Startle us, Spirit of the Living God, unpredictable, surprising,
and open us, each one, for the word you have for us today.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen. -Rev. John Buchanan

Prayer of Confession
Merciful God, hear our prayer of confession: We confess that we have put our own pleasure ahead of your purposes. We have preferred our limited wisdom to your limitless revelation.      
We have been more ready to fight with one another than to free the oppressed, more inclined to feed our own egos than to give bread to the hungry. Forgive us, God, and teach us to shine your light of love. Amen.

A moment of silence for personal reflection

Words of Assurance
God stirs our conscience into restlessness and heals our very hearts. Our return to God is a sign of the healing that already has taken place within us. God forgives us right where we are at. Thanks be to God.

THE MESSAGE

A Time for Children of all Ages
Anthem “Prayer of St. Francis” – B. Cabena

Scripture Readings

Romans 5: 1-8 (NIV)
Peace and Hope
5 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we[c] also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Matthew 9:35-10:8 (NIV)
The Workers Are Few
35 Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. 38 Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”

Jesus Sends Out The Twelve
10 Jesus called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.
These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.

Morning Reflection  “Making God credible in the world”

Hymn “Christ for the World, We Sing” No. 295

  1. Christ for the world we sing; the world to Christ we bring with loving zeal:
    the poor and them that mourn, the faint and overborne,
    sin-sick and sorrow worn, whom Christ doth heal.
  2. Christ for the world we sing; the world to Christ we bring with joyful song:
    the newborn souls whose days, reclaimed from error’s ways,
    inspired with hope and praise, to Christ belong.

THE THANKSGIVING

Sharing Our Joys and Concerns

Choral Call to Prayer “Hear our prayer, O Lord, incline thine ear to us and grant us Thy peace

Prayers of the People

Lord’s Prayers (trespasses)

Choral Response to Prayer “Thou will keep them in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on Thee

Offering
Your gifts to the church matter now more than ever! We encourage people to continue to make an offering by mailing to the church. Your generosity in this time makes a big difference.

Doxology

Offertory Prayer
This offering is our statement of faith, O God. We give because we believe this congregation is important, our ministry changes lives for the better, and we are part of something much larger than ourselves. Use our time, talents, and treasures in ways that exceed our grandest vision of your church. Amen.

THE DEPARTURE

CLOSING PRAYER
The Franciscan blessing:
May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart.
May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom and peace.
May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation and war, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy.
May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.  Amen.

Closing Hymn “Eternal God, Whose Power Upholds”   No. 294

  1. Eternal God, whose power upholds Both flower and flaming star,
    To whom there is no here nor there, No time, no near nor far,
    No alien race, no foreign shore, No child unsought, unknown:
    O send us forth, Thy prophets true, To make all lands Thine own!
  2. O God of love, whose Spirit wakes In every human breast,
    Whom love, and love alone, can know, In whom all hearts find rest
    Help us to spread Thy gracious reign Till greed and hate shall cease,
    And kindness dwell in human hearts, And all the earth find peace!


Postlude “Halifax” (second variation) – G.F. Handel

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Trinity & Communion Sunday

Andrei Rublev’s famous icon showing the three Angels being hosted by Abraham at Mamre.

Centering Words
Franciscan priest and theologian Richard Rohr argues that the nature of the Trinity requires orienting ourselves in a new way: “Don’t start with the One and try to make it into Three,” he writes in his book, The Divine Dance. “Start with the Three and see that this is the deepest nature of the One.”

Prelude “For George” – S. Conrady

THE PREPARATION

Lighting our Candles
If you have a candle, let us light our candles together to remind ourselves that there is light in the darkness and that we can share that light with one another in our own times of darkness and we can share that light of love with the world. Please light your candles if you have one as we enter into our time of worship.

A moment of silence

Welcome and  Announcements

Opening Hymn “Come, Thou Almighty King” No. 246

  1. Come, thou Almighty King, help us thy name to sing, help us to praise.
    Father, all glorious, o’er all victorious, come and reign over us,
    Ancient of Days.
  2. To the great One in Three, eternal praises be, hence evermore.
    His sov’reign majesty, may we in glory see, and to eternity
    love and adore.

Morning Prayer
Jesus prayed that we might be one, just as He and God are One. This morning we offer our praise and prayers as one body in Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit. In relationship with God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, we have come to worship the One to whom we belong. Amen.


THE MESSAGE

A Time for Children of all Ages
Anthem “Hymn to Freedom” – O. Peterson

Scripture Readings

2 Corinthians 13:11-13
11 Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.12 Greet one another with a holy kiss. 13 All God’s people here send their greetings.

Matthew 28:16-20
16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Morning Reflection  “Trinity Sunday: What’s it to you?”

Communion Hymn “Let Us Break Bread Together” No. 288

  1. Let us break bread together on our knees;
    Let us break bread together on our knees.
    When I fall on my knees, with my face to the rising sun,
    O Lord, have mercy on me.
  2. Let us drink wine together on our knees;
    Let us drink wine together on our knees.
    When I fall on my knees, with my face to the rising sun,
    O Lord, have mercy on me.

THE COMMUNION

Invitation
Christ Jesus, you emptied yourself completely keeping nothing for Yourself. Naked, utterly stripped, you give yourself to us as bread, which sustains us, and as wine, that consoles us. You are Light and Truth. You are the Way and the Hope. You are love. You are present in all we are. Grow in us, Jesus. Grow in us.   -Julia Esquivel, Guatemala

Prayer of Confession
Triune God, we acknowledge you as Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer. You grant us opportunities to be co-creators, but we cling to our ruts and routines. You expand the horizons of our caring only to have our prejudices and selfishness intrude on your generosity in Christ. You send your Spirit to empower us, and we waste the power you supply in meaningless activity. Awaken us from our apathy, forgive our laziness, and re-channel our priorities; we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

A moment of silent reflection

Words of Forgiveness
Beloved people, our God brings us new life, forgives, and redeems us. Take hold of His forgiveness, and live your life guided by the Spirit of Jesus Christ. Thanks be to God.

Communion Prayer
Gracious God, we thank you for loving the world into existence and sustaining all of life by your goodness. With gratitude, we recall that you revealed yourself through prophets and teachers and most fully in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Through the power of your Spirit, let us know afresh the joy of Christ’s living presence, the strength to face every circumstance of life, and the knowledge that nothing can ever separate us from your love. Amen.
-from Worship Resources, Disciples of Christ

Words of Blessing

Sharing of the Bread and Cup

Prayer of Thanksgiving
We thank you, loving God, for Jesus who came long ago as your beloved Child and who has come again in this feast of joy to be our light, our hope, and our life. Help us to live in the joy and peace that only Christ can bring. This we pray in Jesus name. Amen. -“Thankful Praise” Disciples of Christ

THE THANKSGIVING

Sharing Our Joys and Concerns
Prayer of the People
Lord’s Prayer (trespasses)
Offering
Your gifts to the church matter now more than ever! We encourage people to continue to make an offering by mailing to the church. Your generosity in this time makes a big difference!
Offertory Prayer
Creator God, who has made us in your own image, help us to see your goodness in all people. May our gifts and our lives be used to spread your loving-kindness to all your people. Amen.

THE DEPARTURE

Closing Prayer
O God, our mystery, you bring us to life, call us to freedom, and move between us in love. May we so participate in the dance of your Trinity that our lives may resonate with  You, now and forever. Amen.

Closing Hymn “Holy, Holy, Holy” No. 251

  1. Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!
    Early in the morning our song shall rise to thee.
    Holy, holy, holy! Merciful and mighty!
    God in three Persons, blessed Trinity!
  2. Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!
    All thy works shall praise thy name in earth and sky and sea.
    Holy, holy, holy! Merciful and mighty!
    God in three Persons, blessed Trinity!


Postlude “For George” – S. Conrady

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Music Notes:
Today’s prelude and postlude is freshly composed by our organist Stephan Conrady. About “For George”: When playing piano only with either only the white keys or the black keys, you cannot explain feelings in an adequate manner. Therefore, this piece is in Bb flat minor (one of the most equal mixes of black and white keys). I didn’t want to press feelings like sorrow, hope and fear into rhythmical patterns, so there are polyrhythmic elements (like being able to feel both a waltz and a march pulse simultaneously) combined with a strongly syncopated (off-beat) melody line.

Our anthem is a tune I have played and sung several times at church. It was written by Canadian Oscar Peterson in 1962, for his jazz album “Night Train” but feels especially important this week. Enjoy this rendition by prominent Canadian jazz artists Oliver Jones, Dave Young, & Dione Taylor.