Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
June 29, 2008
Worship 10:00 am

      "Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ…"
(Romans 5:1)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)

  Call to Worship

*Hymn                           "Sing praise to God who reigns"                              59

*Opening Prayer

  Scripture                                  Matthew 9:1-8

  Unison Confession                                                                                    703

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

  Hymn                                     "My life flows on"                                       580

  Pastoral Prayer

  Tercentennial Minute

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

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

*Response                                "Lead me, Lord"                                        538


  Scripture                                   Romans 5:1-5

  Message                        "Justification by Faith"
                                          Bob Barr, guest preacher

*Hymn                                    "We walk by faith"                                       570



#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship
Psalm 89:1-4, 15-18
(Laughing Bird Version)

LORD, we will never stop singing about your rock-solid love;
........we will transmit the story of your faithfulness
................on down to every generation to come.

Your love and loyalty were built to last for eternity;
........we’ll go public with that message.
Your faithfulness is beyond measure;
........as infinite as the sky above us.

You said,
........“I have formed an alliance with my chosen leader;
................I have given my word to David, my servant.
........I have guaranteed a firm foundation for his family forever;
................there will always be one of his descendants on the throne.”

We are on cloud nine
........when we are celebrating in your presence, LORD.
We all know what to do and say,
........and we bask in the light of your favour.
Every mention of your name has us bursting with enthusiasm
........from dawn till dusk,
and we tell the stories over and over
........of how you have done the right thing by everyone.

Whatever glory and strength we have comes from you.
........Because you have been good to us, our power has grown great.
Our safety and security are in your hands, LORD;
........you are our one and only, the ruler of Israel.

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net

Opening Prayer

            Lord, as we walked through the doors to this place of worship, we brought with us our cares and concerns, our joys and our sorrows. Touch our hearts and heal us, Lord. Make us ready to become your faithful disciples. AMEN.

borrowed from Cokesbury's Worship Connection
written by Rev. Nancy Townley

Unison Confession

Gracious God, hear our confession.
Our faith is uncertain,
      our forgiveness slow,
      our conviction weak,
      our compassion wavering.
We have exalted the proud and powerful,
      put down the weak,
      saturated the rich with good things,
      neglected the poor,
      sent the hungry away empty-handed.
We have helped ourselves.

Show us your mercy,
Help us show mercy,
      through your Son, our Savior. AMEN

Hymnal #703
Adapted from the musical "Prayer Phrases"
by Harris J. Loewen, ©1986

Pastoral Prayer


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


Tercentennial Minute
Julia Gilbert Changes Love Feast Among the Brethren – Twice!

The weighty decisions about policy and practice among the Brethren were usually made by groups of bearded elders, but one woman, Julia Gilbert (1844-1934), helped change the way the Brethren celebrated communion not once, but twice.  The first time took less than a year, the second took much of her life.

            Julia was born near the foot of South Mountain, in Frederick County, Maryland, but when she was four her family moved to Wolfe Creek in western Ohio.  She attended her first Annual Meeting at the age of six and rarely missed another through her long life.

            When she was eight years old two of her siblings died when they contracted measles and scarlet fever.  She herself barely survived, and was crippled for life.

In 1858, when she was fourteen, she was baptized in the rushing stream.  At first she was reluctant to step into the water in her fragile condition, afraid of being swept away, but her pastor reminded her that Jesus had been there before.  Recalling the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist, she stepped out into the river and as she knelt she prayed, "Dear God, I promise to you that I will live faithful to Jesus until I die."  She kept that promise.

She eagerly looked forward to the Love Feast that was celebrated following her baptism as a meal she was sharing with Jesus.  The experience was joyful, but that night she found she could not sleep, and finally lit a candle and read John 13:4 -- "He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself."

            The next day she asked her father why the Wolfe Creek congregation had performed the feetwashing and then set the meal on the table.  Shouldn't they have set the meal on the table and then, like Jesus, risen from the table for the feetwashing.  Her father, according to her report, sighed, and answered, "The old Brethren took the ordinance from several passages of Scripture and thought this to be the proper way it ought to be done."

According to her report, this satisfied her for a day or two, but eventually she questioned the elders, and the next year the congregation had changed the way they performed Love Feast to conform to the fourteen-year-old's reading of scripture.

            By contrast, her next cause took nearly fifty years before it was successfully concluded.  In her day men passed a long strip of communion bread with each other, each breaking off a piece, but the women did not break bread with each other.  Instead, an elder walked down the row and the sisters broke off a piece.  This did not seem biblical to Julia, nor was she satisfied with the official explanations for the practice.  For decades, first in Ohio, and later in Iowa, where she moved after her parents' deaths, she championed the cause, only to see it tabled or returned at Annual Meetings.  Finally, in June of 1910, at Winona Lake, Indiana, Julia herself spoke on the floor of Annual Meeting, saying, "When I was baptized, I made a vow to God to walk in all his ways and to read the scriptures.  I believe it is our duty to do things the way Jesus taught us to do them."

            The motion passed, and the next year the sisters broke the bread among themselves.

And that's the Tercentennial minute for today, June 29, 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

            From the well of wisdom in the book of Proverbs, we draw these familiar words:

5Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not rely on your own insight.
6In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
7Do not be wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
8It will be a healing for your flesh
and a refreshment for your body.

Proverbs 3:5-8

            As you return your offering just now, remember a fourteen-year-old girl who managed to move the “mountain” of her church to help it do things different from the way they always had done it. Recall, also, this same woman in her 60’s who continued to speak up by faith. Give in the same manner, trusting in the Lord. Ushers?


            Okay, Lord, we’ve placed our earthly manna in the plates as they were passed. Help this church to spend it wisely in ways that heal and refresh. Now, God, continue to lead us with your heavenly manna. Speak to us through your Word and the words of our brother, Bob. May what he says and what we do with what he says be pleasing in your sight. Trusting in Jesus, we pray. Amen.


to be given by the guest 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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