Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
April 6, 2008
Worship 10:00 am, Sunday School 11:10 am

The Third Sunday of Easter

      Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you… (Acts 2:38-39a)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)
  Announcements (ends with Preparation)
  Prelude                                 "Episode on ‘Truro'"                     Williams/Smith

  Call to Worship

*Hymn                        "Oh, for a thousand tongues to sing"                         110

*Opening Prayer

  Scripture                                  Luke 24:13-35

  For Children                          "Seeing clearly"

  Hymn                             "Break thou the bread of life"                              360

  Tercentennial Minute          "Prayer Changes the Face of the Enemy"

  Scripture                                   Psalm 116:1-7

  Sharing a joy, a concern, a word of testimony or praise
                                 (please be brief, and aware of God’s listening presence)

  Call to Prayer                         "Oyenos, mi Dios"                                      358

  Pastoral Prayer

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings                  Psalm 116:12-19

  Offertory                   "O Thou Kind and Gracious Father"                 Careless
                                        (Please sign the attendance pad and pass it on)

*Response                         (vs. 1) "God, whose giving"                                 383


  Scripture                                Acts 2:14a, 36-41

  Message                  "From what, for what?" (mp3 podcast)

*Hymn                                   "Count well the cost"                                     437


*Postlude                              "Munich" (Hymnal #440)                       Anonymous

#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines


We do not come into this house cautiously with some vague hope in a kindly Divinity.

We come boldly in the name of Jesus Christ, whom “God raised from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope may be confident in God”

Jesus lives,
we celebrate deathless life,
life abundant and life eternal.
Let earth and heaven rejoice
and celebrate Love’s victory!

by Bruce Prewer, Uniting Church in Australia.

Call to Worship

On which side of Easter are we living?
Post Easter is the new age of God,
where Christ Jesus lives victoriously
and is with us to the end of the world.

No praise is good enough for the God of this new age.
Yet this Holy One treasures our love as if it were perfect.
     I will offer to God the sacrifice of a thankful heart,
     and call on the name of our Living Lord.

No song is beautiful enough, no good deed is pure enough;
yet this Loving One hears our songs and blesses our deeds
as if they were from all the angels and archangels in heaven.
     I will make my vows now to God,
     in the presence of the people,
     in the courts of the house of the Lord.

by Bruce Prewer, Uniting Church in Australia.

Opening Prayer

God of the ever-living Christ Jesus, our words of thanksgiving are indeed not enough. The poverty of our best sentences, and the inadequacy of our sacred music, frustrates our attempts to worship you as you deserve. We say we extol you, we praise you, we glorify you. Gladly we sing out our love and adoration for you. Yet we have not expressed even a fraction of the wonder that throbs in our hearts. O God of Jesus and our God, you are that holy Beauty that will always leave us gasping, yet never leave us unloved. All glory be to you, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen!

by Bruce Prewer, Uniting Church in Australia.

For Children


Tercentennial Minute
"Prayer Changes the Face of the Enemy"

            Though Brethren on both sides of the Mason-Dixon line remained united in their opposition to slavery and war, there was no question that Brethren in the South had it harder than their sisters and brothers in the North.  Property was confiscated, pledges of exemption were broken, and some were killed.

            Against this background the experiences of P.R. Wrightsman of Limestone, Tennessee are as typical as any.  In 1862 Wrightsman was the youngest minister in the congregation and was away studying to be a doctor when a council meeting was called by his church after some of their young men were imprisoned by the Confederates.  Because he was absent he was the one deputized to go to Richmond to seek their release.

Wrightsman was on a train full of Confederate soldiers when a minister of another faith discovered his stand against war and insisted "This war is different."  Wrightsman stood his ground.  When he discovered his challenger believed that God had inspired George Washington to go to war, Wrightsman asked him that if he thought so why would he fight against that same country Washington founded.  The anger expressed by both the minister and the soldiers put him in jeopardy, but he arrived unharmed and fulfilled his mission.

Over the course of the next few years most of his property was taken by Confederate soldiers.  He recalled how late in the war when the soldiers

…came for the last horse they rode up with threats and curses.  Their language and manner impressed me that they came with intent to kill me.  Part of the squad went to the field for the last horse and part remained with me under their charge.  I just stepped inside the stable, stood with my hands upwards, and prayed to my heavenly Father, saying, "Dear Father, save me from these men.  Have mercy upon them, and turn them from their evil course, and save thy servant."

I never exercised stronger faith in prayer than at that time. It seemed as if I was speaking face to face with my blessed Lord.  When I stepped out to the soldiers I felt that God had answered my prayer, for I could see the Satanic look going down out of their faces like the shadow of a cloud before the bright sunlight.

The soldiers then said to me, "Mr. Wrightsman, can we get some bread?"  "O yes," said I, "we are commanded to feed the hungry." I went at once to the kitchen and requested my sisters to cut off a large slice of bread, and butter it for each of them.  They did so and I took it out into the yard and handed a slice to each.  They thanked me for the bread, bowed their heads, mounted their horses and rode away, taking my last horse with them, however.  Feeling sure the Lord had saved my life, I felt happy, "thanked God and took courage."  This occurred in the summer of 1863…."

And that's the Tercentennial Minute for April 6, 2008

by Frank Ramirez, pastor of the Everett, PA Church of the Brethren
posted by permission                        
The Everett church graciously makes available these weekly vignettes from Brethren history
to all who are interested during this 300th anniversary year of our denomination.
Frank will be the guest preacher for our Homecoming on October 26, 2008
(this is our congregation's 100th anniversary year)

Pastoral Prayer


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



God of Truth and Light, we offer you these gifts with humble hearts. We yearn to share your unmistakable presence with all people. While we often find temporary security in our possessions, remind us that true security comes from our relationship with you through your son, Jesus Christ. Strengthen and entrust us to be your faithful disciples. In the name of the Exalted One, we pray. Amen. (Based on Psalm 116:1-4, 12-19.)

From Center for Christian Stewardship worship resources
Copyright 2008
David S. Bell


Acts 2:14a, 36-41

We turn now to the Acts of the Apostles, the New Testament book which tells the story of the beginning of the church. In this morning’s reading, we find ourselves listening in on the tail-end of a sermon, the very first message delivered by a former professional fisherman named Peter. Once upon a time, Jesus called Simon Peter from his boat and promised that he’d one day be fishing for people. Chapter 2 of Acts remembers Peter doing just that. It was the day of Pentecost, 50 days after that first Easter morning. Some interesting things happened on this birth day of the church, and Peter had some explaining to do. Verse 14 says that “Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd.” It may not have been the best sermon ever preached, but he was leaning on God for the words, and the Holy Spirit was at work upon those who were listening, because it had quite an effect on the crowd. We actually pick up the story in the very last sentence of his message that day. Listen to what happened next.

Acts 2:36-41


As you walk your own Emmaus road
                       from empty tomb to everyday life,
           seeking today’s (not yesterday’s)
                        answer to that question,
                                   “what should we do?,”
Remember, Christ is right beside you.
            May your hearts burn within.
            May your eyes open wide.
                        Live what you have received.

(para traducir a español, presione la bandera de España)


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

International Lesson:
Faith and Life Resources
Mennonite Publishing House

International Lesson:
Mennonite Weekly Review

(scroll down on left to "Sunday School lessons)

International Lesson:
Christian Standard
(one week ahead)

International Lesson:
Living Web Sunday School Project

International Lesson:
Adult Bible Studies
from The United Methodist Publishing House
(click "supplemental resources" and "current events supplement" under both the "Student" and "Teacher" sections in the left hand column)

While one of our adult classes follows the International lesson above (see also), using
A Guide for Biblical Studies,
published quarterly by our denomination,
another class often uses one of the
Good Ground series,
also published by Brethren Press.

For children and youth, we use the new
Gather Round curriculum
(developed jointly by the Church of the Brethren and the Mennonite Church)


©2008 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)


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