Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
January 11, 2009
Worship 10:00 am, Sunday School 11:10 am

      In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.”   (Genesis 1:1-3)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)

Called to Worship

  Scripture                                       Psalm 29

*Hymn                        "God of the earth, the sky, the sea"                            53

*Opening Prayer

  Scripture                                    Mark 1:4-11

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

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

  Scripture                                    Acts 19:1-7

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

  Pastoral Prayer

Called to Order

  Scripture                                    Genesis 1:1-5

  Message                             "A brand new day" (mp3)

  Hymn                                      "God of our life"                                        486

Called to Communion

  Words of Preparation

  A Time of Silence

  Unison Prayer of Consecration


  Hymn                                 "I am the Bread of life"                                   472
                         (congregation joins in refrain while deacons distribute the bread)

  Prayer and Affirmation

  Hymn                            "Lord, I am fondly, earnestly"                               514
                                  (congregation sings while deacons distribute the cup)

  Prayer and Affirmation

  Prayer of Thanksgiving

*Hymn                            "Sent forth by God’s blessing"                              478


#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Called to Worship

(a Call to Worship)

            Imagine a mighty storm moving across the land. It begins in the distance over the sea and then rushes through with power, finally ending with calm. That’s the image behind the 29th Psalm.  It’s a song of praise to the One who, in the beginning, created the heavens and the earth. Allow these words to draw you into worship. Listen.

Give to the Lord, you creatures of heaven,
      Give to the Lord all glory and power.
Give to the Lord a glorious name;
      Bow down to the Lord in holy splendor.

The voice of the Lord sounds over the oceans –
      Crashing thunder above the deep seas.
The voice of the Lord is power;
      The voice of the Lord is splendor.
The voice of the Lord splits the cedars;
      God splinters the cedars of Lebanon.
God makes Lebanon skip like a calf,
      Mount Hermon skip like a wild young ox.

Slashing the sky with lightning-swords,
      The Lord’s voice makes the desert writhe;
            The desert of Kadesh quakes.
In terror, the deer flee God’s thunder,
      That snaps the limbs from the trees;
            In the temple God’s glory appears!

The throne of the Lord is above sky and sea;
      The Lord will rule forever.
Lord, give strength to your people;
      Lord, bless your people with peace.

from The Psalms: A New Translation for Prayer and Worship,
by Gary Chamberlain, Copyright ©1984 by The Upper Room

Opening Prayer

God of all life,
      we thank you
            for the signs of your love that surround us,
            for sun and warmth and all that comes to life
                  within creation,
            for all that sleeps within the earth awaiting birth.
We praise you
      for the wisdom of your care,
            water on the earth,
            sunlight on our spirits,
            hands on blinded eyes.

Continue to touch us.
Reach out to us with compassion and forgiveness
      that we may receive your gifts,
      that we may know your love and grace
            and rise to new life in Jesus Christ. AMEN

Hymnal #680, adapted from More Than Words,
by Pat Kozak, C.S.J., and Janet Schaffran, C.D.P.
1st edition ©1986 by the authors;
2nd revised edition ©1988. Crossroad/Continuum Publishing Company.

Mark 1:4-11

         Our second scripture reading is from the beginning of the gospel of Mark. We heard the first 8 verses of Mark on the second of Advent, where the focus was upon John the Baptist. Perhaps you remember the Pastor wearing that silly construction helmet on that day, while he preached about us being God’s “Construction Zone.” Today, we pick up at the fourth verse and read through verse 11. The central focus here is not John, but Jesus and his baptism. Listen: 

read Mark 1:4-11

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

         Advent and Christmas are in the past. However, (put on helmet) this is still God’s Construction Zone. Interesting things happen as we follow this beloved Son of God. Today is a brand new day. Put your helmet on ans step out with Jesus! … Ushers, you have a job to do. So do we.

Acts 19:1-7

         We heard from the Psalms and the Gospels, now we turn to our second New Testament reading, this one from the Acts of the Apostles. Our gaze shifts from the banks of the Jordan river in the land of Israel, to the city of Ephesus in what is today the country of Turkey. Perhaps you remember that in his letter to these Ephesians, the apostle Paul encourages us to put on the “whole armor of God(see 6:10-17), including the “helmet of salvation(put on helmet) and the “sword of the Spirit(hold up the Bible)… In this morning’s episode from the story of Acts, Paul nudges the believers in Ephesus to take a leap of faith. Listen.

Read Acts 19:1-7

Pastoral Prayer

written closer to the time (if not at the moment), perhaps something like the following:

         God of new beginnings, you have called us to this place to hear of your transforming love. We are bathed in the scriptures of Creation and of the baptism of our Lord, Jesus Christ. We hear the Temple ring with the song of the Psalmist, offering praises to You. But our hearts are again becoming hardened. These times in our country are bound in worry and uncertainty. Our lives are changing and the directions are not always clear. Open our eyes, Lord, to see the wonders of all around us. Give us the courage to go forward into this bold new future, ready to work together for the healing of all. As we have brought the names and situations of those near and dear to us before this throne of grace, let us also remember that the blessings that we seek for others will be given to us also. Hold us close, Lord. Bind our wounds. Strengthen our lives. Prepare us for ministries of justice and peace in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. AMEN.

from Worship Connection, written by the Rev. Nancy Townley, Abingdon author.

Called to Order

Genesis 1:1-5

         Now we turn to the very beginning of the Bible. The first three verses “set the stage for the universal drama that is about to commence” (Plaut, p. 16). In two brief verses after that comes the description of the very first day of Creation. If it were possible to hum and read at the same time, the tune in the background might be “Morning has broken like the first morning … praise for them, springing fresh from the word” (Hymnal #648)… Listen.

read Genesis 1:1-5

Called to Communion

Words of Preparation

            As we prepare to come to the Lord's table, we reflect on our reasons for thanksgiving, faith, penitence, and love.  In this time of silence, we remember the Christ who called us to break bread with one another and we thoughtfully examine the state of our faithfulness and our unity with his body.

from For All Who Minister, p. 233
Copyright ©1993, Brethren Press
1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120

Unison Prayer of Consecration

            O God, by your grace we have become part of the family of faith.  We have made a commitment to Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior.  Grant that as we partake of this bread and this cup we might renew our vows to one another and to the Christ whom we serve.

from For All Who Minister, p. 233
Copyright ©1993, Brethren Press
1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120


            All of us who are in love and fellowship in the family of God, who do truly and earnestly repent of our sins, who humbly put our trust in Christ, and who desire his help that we might walk in newness of life, are invited to draw near to God and receive this holy communion to our comfort, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

from For All Who Minister, p. 233-34
Copyright ©1993, Brethren Press
1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120

Prayer and Affirmation

                                   (minister holds bread and says:)
            Luke tells us that Jesus "took a loaf of bread and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them saying, 'This is my body, which is given for you.  Do this in remembrance of me.'"

Pray with me:
            Holy God, we pray your blessing on this sacred symbol of Christ's broken body.  May we receive and partake of this bread in faith, recalling the life and death of Jesus Christ.  Increase our gratitude and our obedience.  In the name of Christ we pray.  Amen.

            As we eat this bread, may we affirm our faith in words first spoken by Christians many centuries ago:

"The bread which we break is the communion of the body of Christ."

Take and eat.

from For All Who Minister, p. 234
Copyright ©1993, Brethren Press
1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120

Prayer and Affirmation

                                   (minister holds cup and says:)
            We are told that Jesus said, "This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood. Do this as often as you drink it in remembrance of me."  And we are reminded, "For as often as you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes."

Pray with me:
            Holy and loving God, we pray your blessing upon this sacred symbol of the blood of Jesus the Christ.  Our hearts are lifted in thanksgiving for love poured out.  As in faith we drink this cup, may your forgiveness and your divine spirit be poured afresh into our lives through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

In humble thanksgiving and joy for life so freely given, repeat after me the words of faith:

"The cup which we bless is the communion of the blood of Christ."

Take and drink

from For All Who Minister, p. 235
Copyright ©1993, Brethren Press
1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120

Prayer of Thanksgiving

            O God, you are never far from us.  You reach out and touch us through your Spirit, through symbols, and through the hands of those we love.  We are deeply grateful to have a place at your table and to share in this sacred food.  By your grace may we continue on our pilgrimage, carrying into all of life the saving love of the Christ, in whose name we pray.  Amen.

from For All Who Minister, p. 235-36
Copyright ©1993, Brethren Press
1451 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120

(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)


©2009 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)


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