Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
March 23, 2008
Worship 10:00 am, Sunday School 11:10 am

Easter Sunday

      "So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God."  (Colossians 3:1)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)

  Quiet Preparation              (vs. 1 & 5) "Guide my feet"                                 546

  Scripture Drama                  "Go Quickly and Tell"

*Hymn                            "Christ the Lord is risen today"                            280

*Opening Prayer

  Unison Confession

  For Children                               "Surprise"

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

  Hymn                                     "The strife is o'er"                                       263

  Pastoral Prayer

  Tercentennial Minute                 "CROP and the Friendship Trains"


  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

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

  Scripture                                 Colossians 3:1-4

  Message                            "Raised with Christ"

*Easter Litany                         "New Life in Christ"                 (back of bulletin)

*Hymn                           "We know that Christ is raised"                            443



#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Scripture Drama
"Go Quickly and Tell"

(this dramatization - by our Junior Youth – continues the Sunrise Service they led earlier)


N = Narrator                   MM = Mary Magdalene            M = The Other Mary
 J = Jesus                                           D1, D2, D3, D4 = Disciples

N: Now Mary Magdalene and the other Mary had run for most of the day till they finally came upon the disciples. They both collapsed, exhausted at the disciples’ feet, trying to tell what they could of what had happened.

M & MM: (run in, in bright, Easter clothes) (huffing and panting)

M: (collapses on knees still panting)

MM: ( puts hands on knees, leaning on pulpit)

D1: What’s wrong?

All D: (Look at the two panting women)

M: J-jesus…alive (says in between panting)

D2: What are you talking about?

MM: There was a huge earthquake…

M: And an angel came down and rolled the stone away

MM: It was the great angel Gabriel

M: The guards collapsed like dead men

MM: The angel told us that Jesus had risen and…

M: We saw it for ourselves

MM: The tomb was empty

D3: It could have been all an act..

all D’s: (agree)

M: But we saw him on the way…

all D’s:

D4: Are you sure?

N: And so they told them the wondrous news and the message they were told to give them. So the disciples traveled to Galilee where Jesus came and they worshipped him finally believing the story.  

J: (comes out and spreads arms wide) 

all D’s: (take off funeral robes to reveal colorful Easter clothes) 

N: Now it was truly clear that Jesus had arisen.

written by Tessa Haynes

Opening Prayer

         Loving God of light, we hid in the darkness and you brought the light of Salvation to our eyes and our spirits. We praise you for the resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ. We have received the greatest good news of healing, hope, and restoration. Praise be to you, eternal God, for this gift of love. Amen.

written by the Rev. Nancy Townley
from Cokesbury's Worship Connexion

Unison Confession

         Merciful God, we confess that like the disciples of old, we ran and hid, in our hearts, from the terror and sadness of the crucifixion. We didn’t want to be there. We found ways of avoiding the scene and pretending that it was all a bad dream. But it wasn’t a dream. Jesus our Lord was crucified. That’s a fact. And we were numbed by the news. But now we have been given the most blessed gift of forgiveness for our stupidity and stubbornness; we have been given the gift of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. New Light has shined in our deep darkness. Restore us again to your presence. Soften our hard hearts. Brighten our spirits, for we ask this in the name of the Resurrected One, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon

         Do not fear. God has conquered death. Jesus Christ, who was crucified, is risen from the dead. Love has been poured out again for each one of us. ALLELUIA! Amen.

both written by the Rev. Nancy Townley
from Cokesbury's Worship Connexion

For Children

         Borrowed from Saving the Ants (©2001, Augsburg Fortress, Minneapolis, p. 56-57) by Ruth Gilmore, this message involves a dozen eggs, one of which has been emptied of its contents and filled with confetti. Using a regular egg and the specially prepared egg, the storyteller -with a bit of wit and whimsy (cracking the latter egg open on a child's head) - relates what the first witnesses to the resurrection expected and what they got. For more, see Gilmore's book.

Pastoral Prayer


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


Tercentennial Minute
"CROP and the Friendship Trains"

            Following World War II both the victors and vanquished of Europe were starving.  Food and supplies were sent by the ton, but the need was still great.  Brethren were among many groups who sought to alleviate the needs.  In addition to Brethren Service workers in Europe and Seagoing Cowboys who shepherded Heifer Project animals across the ocean, a new organization named CROP – which stood for Christian Rural Overseas Program – took shape under the leadership of the Brethren Service Committee, and the Evangelical and Reformed World Service Commission.

CROP was inaugurated in 1947 and operated out of a donated dorm room at Bethany Seminary.  So when the nationally known columnist and radio broadcaster Drew Pearson conceived of the idea of “Friendship Trains” to collect and transport food from across the nation to port cities in order to help Europe’s hungry people, he turned to CROP for assistance in organizing.

It turned out to be a great match.  The Friendship Trains picked up hundreds of carloads of foodstuffs to ship to Europe.  Moreover their itineraries were deliberately designed to garner the most publicity and therefore the most public interest.  The trains only traveled during the day so their journey could be covered by the newspapers.  Arrivals would be announced in advance so they could be met by cheering crowds and preening politicians.  In this way many thousands could take part in the relief effort.

Today CROP has become an ecumenical organization.  It still involves the efforts of hundreds of thousands through the CROP walks and other programs which allow ordinary people to challenge themselves each year to do even more to fight want and hunger both overseas and close at hand.

            And that’s the Tercentennial Minute for Easter Sunday, March 23, 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)

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

         We’re so used to singing the Doxology after we take up the offering that it may sound strange to hear it beforehand, but that’s what we’re going to do this morning. Why? Because Easter is a time for the unexpected. The story we tell on this day is full of surprises. You’d think, for instance, that anger would be at the top of God’s list after what was done to Jesus. Don’t we get mad, or at least we should, when such things happen today? Or just plain depressed. And rightly so! And yet, surprise! On this day we remember that God rolled away that stone and something altogether different happened. We’re told it had something to do with God’s love for this world. And the Lord continues to roll away that stone. A different kind of friendship train – a new relationship with God - is pulling out of the station today.
         Okay, we’ve already sung the Doxology. Think of it as the whistle blowing for everyone to get on board. You’ve got something to share, sisters and brothers, an Easter offering.... All aboard!

Easter Litany
"New Life in Christ"

One:     Living Christ, you enter our Good Friday world where we stare into the tombs of our lives, doubting any possibility of resurrection. Disturb us with the power that set you free from the tomb. Empower us to receive the hope of a new and abundant life.

Thanks be to God that through your rising we may rise.

All:       Through Christ we are raised to new life. Hallelujah!

One:     Living Christ, you embrace us with your love, reaching to all who desire resurrection physically and spiritually. Help us trust the resurrection of our lives while we still inhabit this world.

Thanks be to God that through your rising we may rise.

All:       Through Christ we are raised to new life. Hallelujah!

One:     Living Christ, you turn away from the empty tomb to walk the roads of Jerusalem and Emmaus and to grill fish on the shore of Lake Galilee. Call us to abandon the empty tombs of our lives, that we may embody and share the new life you give to us. May the shape of our resurrected life invite others to embrace your life and love.

Thanks be to God that through your rising we may rise.

All:       Through Christ we are raised to new life. Hallelujah!

by Lisa Hazen, pastor
Wichita First Church of the Brethren Wichita, Kansas
Church of the Brethren Living Word Bulletin
Anchor/Wallace, Sleepy Eye MN 56085, "The Living Word Series"


         Go now, and share the good news that God has rolled away the stone and Christ has risen from the dead and is going on ahead of you where you will meet him in the Galilee of your common, daily lives. Amen!

(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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