Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
May 18, 2008
Worship 10:00 am, Sunday School 11:10 am

      Saul said to David, "You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are just a boy, and he has been a warrior from his youth."
                                  (1 Samuel 17:33)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)

  Call to Worship                                                                    (back of bulletin)

*Hymn                                     "Holy, holy, holy!"                                      120


  Scripture                                   Acts 22:1-11

  Tercentennial Minute
            “Catharine Hummer, first woman to preach among the Brethren

  Scripture                                   Acts 22:12-21

  For Children                            "Like a rock"

  Unison Prayer of Confession                                                                    698

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


  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory              (Please sign the attendance pad and pass it on)

  Hymn                            "A mighty fortress is our God"                             165

  Scripture                               1 Samuel 17: 28-40

  Video                              "March of the Unqualified"

  Message                      “Unqualified, yet Chosen (mp3 audio)
                                        Jeannine Schwartz, preacher

*Hymn                               "God, who touches earth"                                 511



#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship
(to be read slowly, with time for breath and meditation)

People: As we rejoice,
Leader: Is there a comer in your heart for rejoicing just now?
             Lift up a hand, or even just a finger, and rejoice.

People: As we are mended,
Leader: Is there a place inside where you are unraveling, that
             needs God's tending? Let God care for you now.

People: As we encourage one another,
Leader: Stretch out your heart, just a little, toward one whose
             heart you would encourage.

People: As we find a common mind,
Leader: Will you release your hold, and let God illumine a unity
             deeper than division?

People: As we rejoice, as we are mended, as we encourage, as
            we find a common mind, "the God of love and peace
            will be with us."
Leader: "Live in peace."

People: With God's help, we are building peace
                         in our hearts and in our homes,
                         in our church and in our community,
                         and all throughout our world.
Leader: "Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the saints greet
              you. The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of
              God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with all
              of you." Amen.

by Matt Guynn, Portland, Oregon
coordinator of peace witness, On Earth Peace
Church of the Brethren Living Word Bulletin
Anchor/Wallace, Sleepy Eye MN 56085, "The Living Word Series"


         Grant, O God, that thinking, we may think your thoughts; that speaking, we may speak your word; that singing, we may sing to your praise; that hearing, we may hear your truth; and that willing, we may make your will our own, so that walking forward at the end of our worship, we may walk in your love and your peace, and departing from one another, not depart from you. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

adapted from prayer by Roy Pearson, Hear Our Prayer, ©1961 McGraw-Hill, Inc. New York, NT.
Taken from For all who Minister, ©1993, Brethren Pres, Elgin, IL, p.85

Tercentennial Minute
 Catharine Hummer, first woman to preach among the Brethren

The story of Catharine Hummer of White Oak, Pennsylvania, is an important, if largely forgotten, event in our Colonial history.  In 1762 a Brethren teenager in Colonial America claimed she saw angels.  She said she looked into heaven and saw people who were baptized after death – three times forward, of course – and saved.  And she preached about it.  That made her the first woman to preach among the Brethren.

There was tremendous controversy.  Some who heard her preach insisted they saw angels as well.  Others questioned the source of her visions. She saw these visions, according to the accusation, only when alone in the presence of the doctor Sebastian Keller, a married man who’d left his wife behind at the Ephrata Cloisters. Her father, the first minister of White Oak, fiercely defended her. Conrad Beissel, the charismatic head of the Ephrata Community, believed her visions and recorded them, inviting her to stay. 

Like a meteor across the sky she attracted the attention of Colonial Pennsylvania, Brethren and non-Brethren alike.  For a moment she was the brightest thing in the heavens.  And like a meteor she vanished, without a trace. Despite the fact she was a central figure in a major controversy.  Most of her life is a mystery.  Not even the dates of her birth and death are known.

More important than Hummer herself was the Annual Meeting decision that followed on May 28, 1763.  Twenty-two Brethren elders, including Alexander Mack, Jr., and Christopher Sauer II, came up with one of the most extraordinary decisions that Brethren have never paid attention to, one that should certainly speak to us today.

            "…we advise," they wrote, "out of brotherly love, that on both sides all judgments and harsh expressions might be entirely laid down, though we do not have the same opinion of that noted occurrence, so that those who think well of it, should not judge those who are of the contrary opinion, and those who do not esteem it, should not despise those who expect to derive some use and benefit from it."

The Brethren, who prized uniformity in their nonconformity to the world, decided they could achieve that uniformity in action and appearance – but not in thought.  They could not and would not legislate what fellow Brethren ought to believe with regards to the truth of Catharine’s visions.  Their only concern was about the outward behavior of Brethren towards each other. 

            And that’s the Tercentennial Minute for today, May 18, 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)

Children’s Time
"Like a Rock"

Synopsis:  A backpack filled with heavy rocks shows how hard it is to carry around something too weighty for us to keep shouldering on our own - sin. 1 John 1:9 provides the promise. A volunteer is chosen from the children to wear the backpack throughout the lesson, with the periodic question asked - "Is it getting too heavy?"  Talk about sin in our lives comparing it to this backpack. We do wrong and it weighs us down, especially if we don't let it go - confess it. When we confess/tell our sin to God, the huge load is lifted from us. God forgives us. "All we have to do is ask."

For the complete lesson, see pp. 15-16
of  Children's Sermons to Go,
by Deborah Raney and Vicky Miller,
©1998, Abingdon Press, Nashville.

Unison Prayer of Confession

Forgive me my sins, O Lord.
Forgive me the sins of my youth 
                  and the sins of my age,
         the sins of my soul
                  and the sins of my body,
         my secret and my whispering sins,
         the sins I have done to please myself
                  and the sins I have done to please others.
Forgive those sins which I know
         and the sins which I do not know
Forgive them, Lord;
         forgive them in all your great goodness,
         through Jesus Christ, our Lord. AMEN

Hymnal #698
by Lancelot Andrewes, ca. 1600
from The New Book of Christian Prayers, © 1986 Tony Castle, ed
Crossroad/Continuum Publishing Company.


         O God, we pause before you not to withdraw from our daily round but to regain our perspective in the midst of what we do.

         We pause not to retire from the race but to catch our breath and to pace ourselves for the hurdles that lie ahead.

         We pause not to forget our anxieties, our distrust and fear of one another, our unfulfilled aspirations, our broken dreams, but to remember these aright in the light of your healing grace and power. We pause not to seek a face-saving retreat from the hard challenges facing us but to ask your help that we may advance more deeply into the quality of discipleship that beckons as an open door because of the One who walked among us, died on a cross, and yet lives.

         We would open our lives to your providential care so that we shall be more bold in our obedience, more humble in our love, and more courageous in our trust. Give us the ability to respond to the future that calls to us in Christ, the future that haunts and disturbs, contends and strives with us in the present. Include our tomorrows in your purpose by giving us the wisdom to discern what is truly in keeping with your will. Lift us above the petty and the merely private, above the cheap and the trivial. Ventilate the staleness of our self-centeredness with the fresh air of your kingdom tasks, of your intention for the world and all history as declared in Christ. Help us be your ministers, witnessing to the present and coming work of your hand, a work that promises to fashion a city that is built on rock rather than shifting sand. Make us servants of your purpose in the name and spirit of Jesus whose obedience issued in death on a cross. Amen.

by Warren F. Groff
from Prayer: God's Time and Ours
(Copyright © Brethren Press, 1984)

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

In the Torah, we find this commandment:

         "They shall not appear before the LORD empty-handed; all shall give as they are able, according to the blessing of the LORD your God that he has given you." (Deuteronomy 16:16b-17)

Take the words to heart as you return your offering. Ushers?


to be prepared by preacher

(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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