Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
July 13, 2003
Worship 10:00 am Sunday School for all ages 11:15 am

Godspeed and Remembrance

      "In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace that he lavished on us" (Ephesians 1:7-8a).

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)
  Announcements
  Prelude

  Call to Worship                        Psalm 85:8-13

*Hymn                               "Praise God from whom"                                   118

*Opening Prayer

  Sharing a joy, a concern, a word of testimony or praise

  Farewell Service

  Hymn                         "Will you let me be your servant"                              307
                       (Pre-school thru 2nd grade children then leave for Sunday School)

  Pastoral Prayer

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory

  Scripture                Ephesians 1:3-14 (read from The Message)

  Message       "The Celebration of his lavish gift-giving"

  Hymn                       "Marvelous grace of our loving Lord"                         151

  Prayer of blessing over bread and cup

  Communion

*Hymn                            "Sent forth by Godís blessing"                              478
                                                                   (lyrics, tune/midi)

*Benediction


#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship
Psalm 85:8-13 (NRSV) with four readers

Reader #1 is sitting in the middle of the congregation,
              #2 is at the lectern,
              #3 is at the pulpit, and
              #4 speaks from the balcony.

1 - Let me hear what God the LORD will speak,

2 - for he will speak peace to his people,

3 - to his faithful,

4 - to those who turn to him in their hearts.

1 - Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him,

2 - that his glory may dwell in our land.

3 - Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet;

2 - righteousness and peace will kiss each other.

1 - Faithfulness will spring up from the ground,

4 - and righteousness will look down from the sky.

3- The LORD will give what is good,

2 - and our land will yield its increase.

4 - Righteousness will go before him,

1 - and will make a path for his steps.

Opening Prayer

         Lord God, speak your peace to your people, gathered here in Jesusí name. We confess that our faithfulness to you, our obedience to your calling, our righteousness is not steadfast and true. In living out our praise, we too easily falter after the first page. Were it not for the lavish gift of your Son, we would be lost. Through him, however, we turn to you in our hearts, knowing your steadfast love and faithfulness, your righteousness and peace. In him your salvation is at hand. We thank you. May this worship reflect your goodness, as we respond to you with our heart, soul, and mind. Make a path in the middle of this congregation today, and walk among us through your Holy Spirit. This we pray in the name of the One who is your peace, your salvation - Jesus Christ. Amen.

(refers to Psalm 85:8-13 and the demanding three page doxology -
"Praise God from whom," #118, sung immediately before)
   
 

Farewell Service

Would      (husband and wife)      please come forward.

         As Jesus sent 70 of his disciples ahead to spread good news, he told them: "Whenever you enter a town and its people welcome you, eat what is set before you; cure the sick who are there, and say to them, 'the kingdom of God has come near to you" (Luke 10:8-9).

         Fourteen years ago you "entered this town," so to speak, you joined this congregation and became a part of our common life in Christ. We welcomed you in, and you ate our food, and shared with us your lives. It has been a joy to have you with us. ______ taught you well how to make communion bread. Thank you for baking it again for this morningís worship. You have touched us in other ways, and we hope our touch has been felt as well. Itís amazing how in such ways as these God makes us whole. The kingdom has come near.

         Here you are, on your way again. Actually, youíve been "on your way" for the past year, living in two locations. Itís now time for one dwelling to be your home, so that you live in the same state. We know you will be able to join a new church family in Florida, and we will be happy to know that you have become settled together in this new place. We want you to know, however, that you will be missed here at Long Green Valley church.

         To help you remember your time with us, we would like to give you green t-shirts. When you wear them, recall that you are still a part of this family of faith, even though your new home is many miles away. Pray that God may make this garden green with other newcomers, as special to us as you have been.

         If you are able, you're welcome now to share any thoughts with us. There also will be time after worship to speak personally, face to face. Shall we pray together:

         Lord God of all creation, we thank you for the joy of friendship. You expand our circle of love in so many ways. In the leaving of these, our friends, you are widening our fellowship even further. Our hearts, minds, and prayers will now personally include _______, Florida.
         We ask your blessing upon ____ and ____ as they move. Bless their home. Bless their new church. Bless their work and play. Through all the changes, surround this family with your loving presence.
         In Jesusí name we pray. Amen.

         By the way, when I learn a particular hymn is a favorite of someone, I write a note of it in my hymnal. I asked ____ to choose the first hymn as one special to him. That is now noted in my hymnal. At the bottom of our next hymn I have had listed, "a favorite of ______." Letís sing it together as our youngest children head to Sunday School, and we prepare for prayer.
       

Pastoral Prayer

 

written closer to the time (if not at the moment)

 

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

         This past week, your denomination gathered "In Jesusí name" in Boise, Idaho. You called me to be your delegate there. We sought to be faithful to God, to seek the mind of Christ, as we deliberated over various issues facing the church today. We are not a "perfect people" by any manner of means. We just try to lift up "Another way of living ... simply, peacefully, together."

         We have gathered here today "In Jesusí name," also. We seek to be faithful as well, right here and now. We arenít perfect, but we try - to the best of the ability God gives us through the Holy Spirit, saved by Godís grace in Jesus Christ - to lift up "Another way of living ... simply, peacefully, together."

         With that in mind, letís respond to Godís goodness with our tithes and offerings. Will the ushers come forward to serve.
       

Prayer of blessing over bread and cup

         Lord, you have invited us into this celebration of your lavish gift-giving. We remember the sacrifice of your Son, Jesus - how he was broken upon the cross and his blood was shed to set us free from sin and death. This we proclaim here and now. These symbols, however - a piece of bread, a cup of juice - seem somewhat inadequate to convey the abundance, the overflowing blessing of what you have provided in Him. And yet, in the simplicity of eating and drinking and remembering, we are transformed. We dare to live as the body of Christ - at times broken and torn ourselves, but still whole in Him.

         Bless this bread, bless this cup, O Lord. In the awesome holiness of this simple moment, inspire your people gathered here to live large, to become more aware of your mission in this world, to live for your glory and our neighbors good, to lift up that other way of living Jesus revealed ... simply, peacefully, together. In his name we pray. Amen.
      

Benediction

Go now:
         Go in safety,
                  for you cannot go where God is not.
         Go in love,
                  for love alone endures.
         Go with purpose,
                  and God will honor your dedication.
         Go in peace,
                  for it is the gift of God to those
                  whose hearts and minds are in Christ Jesus.
Amen.

Earle W. Fike jr.
For All Who Minister: A Worship Manual for the Church of the Brethren,
©1993, Brethren Press, p. 122
     

 

Interested in Sunday School?
Below is a growing list of possible sites to visit. As you discover others, please let us know.

International Lesson thoughts
from the
Mennonite Publishing House

International Lesson
Commentary by
Richard Hughes
(posted on Saturday)

International Lesson
Commentary by
Edwin Elliott

 

©2003 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)

 

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