Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
March 9, 2003
Worship 10:00 am Sunday School for all ages 11:15 am

First Sunday of Lent

      "Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all day long. Be mindful of your mercy, O LORD, and of your steadfast love, for they have been from of old."    (Psalm 25:5-6)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)

*Invitation and Invocation                                                         (back of bulletin)

*Hymn                               "We praise thee, O God"                                     99

  Unison Confession (read, not sing)                                                                128

  Response (sing)                  "Glory be to the Father"                                    127

  Scripture                                   Mark 1:9-15

  For Children                   "Through the waters"
                               (children then leave for choir practice or pre-school play)

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

  Hymn                                 "Sweet hour of prayer"                                       11

  Pastoral Prayer

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings


*Prayerful Response                 "Teresaís Prayer"                   (see bulletin insert)

  Scripture                                  1 Peter 3:18-22

  Message             "Responding with a clear conscience"

*Hymn                                      "He leadeth me"                                          599


#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Invitation and Invocation
To be read responsively

         Rejoice! It is a good morning in Jesus Christ.
         Every day is exciting and fresh in him.

We have gathered as a faith community
On this first Sunday in Lent
To lift our hearts and voices in prayer, praise, and adoration.

         In our need and sinfulness, God reaches out to us;
         "While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
         He continues to seek the lost and surround us with his care.

Lord, this would be a lonely world without you;
This we need to affirm with our hearts and minds.
Often we miss opportunities to experience your presence;
Help us not waste this one as we have gathered to worship.
         We come to offer our thanks,
                  To share our joys and concerns,
                  To renew our commitment,
                  And seek again your will for our lives.
Open us to the indwelling of your Spirit,
That we may experience your power passing through us
And extending throughout our faith community. Amen.

by Ronald D. Beachley,
executive Western Pennsylvania District
Hollsopple, Pennsylvania
Church of the Brethren Living Word Bulletin
Anchor/Wallace, Sleepy Eye MN 56085, "The Living Word Series"

Unison Confession

         Please be seated, and turn with me to #128 in our hymnal. These words are taken from the 51st Psalm, a plea to God for a clear conscience. The Bible links them to King David, saying that he wrote them after the prophet Nathan had confronted him about his affair with Bathsheba and the subsequent murder of her husband.

         While our sins may not be the same as those of that Old Testament monarch, we also - too easily and often - fall short of what God created us to be. Like David, we need to turn to God in repentance. Spend a few moments in silence just now and examine yourself. What have you done this past week that shouldnít have? How about that which you should have done, but didnít? If you have sinned against another person, ponder how - with Godís help - you might make it right. Prepare the way of the Lord in your heart. (Silence - approx. 60 seconds)

         Now, letís read (not sing) together the words to hymn #128. Then weíll sing the hymn right before it, "Glory be to the Father" (#127), remembering how God forgives and revives us when we turn to him.

1. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
2. Cast me not away from thy presence, and take not thy Holy Spirit from me.
3. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation, and uphold me with thy free Spirit.

Response (sing) "Glory be to the Father" #127

For Children
"Through the waters"
Mark 1:9-11

         Good morning! The story we just heard from the Bible today talks about the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist. Do you remember what happened two weeks ago in church, right back there? Two persons were baptized, just like Jesus was baptized. What does it mean to be baptized? Well, it means a lot of things, and today weíre going to explore some of what baptism means for us. I need your help, cause weíre not just talk about it, weíre going to "act" these things out. Will you help? Great! To start with, everybody lie down on the floor and get into a little ball.

         Youíre getting it - pretend youíre a little baby, waiting to be born (like the babies growing inside little Ethanís or Michaelís mommies). The Bible tells us that one of the things baptism means is that we are born again as children of Godís family. Okay, stand up now and pretend you are washing, as if you are taking a shower. The Bible also says that baptism means we are washed clean of all our sin and made ready to go to work for God. Is everybody clean? Okay, now we need to pretend weíre dead! Everybody lie down on the floor and act like youíre dead. (If one of the children doesnít want to, donít force)

         It does sound a little scary, but the Bible says that when weíre baptized we die to sin. In other words, we donít want to do bad things any more. I guess what weíre really doing is burying the bad, sinful part of ourselves. Everyone had enough of being dead?

         Well, letís jump up, because baptism also means that we are going to rise from the dead just like Jesus did. What do you think Jesus looked like when he came back to life. .... Yes, all those things. Letís raise our arms real high ó not just because we are rising from the dead, but because we want to praise King Jesus. Letís have a prayer of thanks for all of the things baptism means ó especially for new life with Jesus.

adapted from Welcoming the Children,
by Brant D. Baker
(other scriptures - Matthew 1:18-24; 1 Peter 3:21-22;
Mark 10:35-45; Colossians 2:11-12; Romans 6:8-11)  

Returning our Tithes and Offerings
(refers to Genesis 9:8-17)

         Remember the story of Noah. After the ark passed through the flood, and the waters receded, a rainbow appeared in the sky, and God said, "This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations... When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh." (pause)

         What sign of your end of the covenant with God is visible today?... As you return your offering, think about the promises you have made to God. Donít just put money in the plate as it is passed. Allow your offering to be a reminder to you of your covenant with the Lord. Remember the waters of baptism.

         Will the ushers now come forward to serve....


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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