Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
May 8, 2011
Worship 10:00 am              Sunday School 11:10am

Third Sunday of Easter / Mothers' Day

      "Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he had been made known to them in the breaking of the bread." (Luke 24:35)

  Beginning with Praise (9:50 am)                      "Who are these"                      270
  Words to prepare the way        1 Peter 1: 17-23                       (pew Bibles, p. 1058)

  Call to Worship

*Hymn                          "I know that my Redeemer lives"                             279

*Opening Prayer

  A Litany for Mother's Day                                                               (see insert)

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

  Hymn                              "His eye is on the sparrow"                       (see insert)

  Pastoral Prayer

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

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

  For Children                 "We want to see Jesus"

  Dramatic Reading                     Luke 24:13-35

  Response                        "Who are these" (sing twice)                                 270

  Message                     "Encounters along the way" (mp3)

*Hymn                         "Proclaim the tidings near and far"                            282



*Rise in body or in spirit

#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship

First Peter calls us to be born again:

Born again ...
      by the precious blood of Christ the lamb.

Born again ...
      not of the perishable, but of the imperishable.

Born again ...
      so that our faith and hope are in God.

Born again ...
      to be holy, separating ourselves from the sins of our past.

Born again ...
      for action, moving in righteousness.

Born again ...
      to be living stones built into a spiritual house.

Born again ...
      to be a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God.

May we heed the call, opening ourselves to the mercy that is ours in Jesus Christ, and praise the One who calls us into the light.

by Carol Scheppard
Lebanon Church of the Brethren
Mount Sidney, Virginia
Church of the Brethren Living Word Bulletin
Anchor/Wallace, Sleepy Eye MN 56085, "The Living Word Series"

Opening Prayer

            When a child is born there is a mother's cry of both pain and joy, followed by a baby's first breath and a wail of new life. It is you, O Lord, who have given us birth, not only on the day in which we each arrived naked in this world, but also on our rising day in Christ. As a mother willingly is transformed in body and spirit for the birth and raising of her child, so Christ Jesus chose the cross and the tomb that these might became the womb of our resurrection to new life. We have gathered once again to celebrate this birth day, and to willingly grow as you raise us to maturity, O God.

            As children do not always take to discipline; as adolescents have their times of rebellion along the way to becoming real persons and not carbon copies of their parents, so we press the boundaries of your instruction, O Lord. We ask your forgiveness for our transgressions, knowing that, like a good mother, you have our best interests in heart, and want us to grow to full stature.

            Bless this time of worship. In it, may we become more aware of your abiding presence, more conscious of your direction, breathing in your Spirit, like we did on the day of our birth. May our song be our birthing cry, our prayer be like the often unspoken communication between mother and child. May we hear what you would say to us this day. And when we go on our way, may it be with joyful hearts, knowing that our redeemer lives. Amen!

Pastoral Prayer

            A choir greeted us this morning as we stepped outside, O Lord. They were singing a rising song to the sun, a beckoning song to one another, a happy song for the dawning of a new day, a freedom song. Sitting up in the trees, sparrows and other birds are watchful eyes in this world. They often are the first to notice changes in the environment. By paying attention to them, we may see the coming changes of seasons, or warnings of pending danger.

            Your Son spoke of your attentiveness to the little sparrow, a common bird, how not one of them is forgotten by you. Your "eye is on the sparrow," we just sang, affirming that if you pay attention to them, you surely watch over us, as Jesus said. Thank you.

            We can't imagine what it really means for you to oversee us all, sparrows and humans alike, along with all creation. The scriptures reveal to us that yours are active eyes. You do not simply watch without caring, allowing the world to simply turn under your benevolent gaze. You are moved to action by what you see, though our limited eyes do not often behold all that you do. We have raised up our concerns to you just now, persons we know, the things we see which we draw to your attention. Of course, you know them before we even mention them. As we lift them up, we become overseers also. For those facing difficult times, we sing a rising song to the Son. We beckon one another through our prayers to you. Joy transforms our tears and fears, and a new sense of freedom in you is born ... again. We lift up our wings of faith, feeble though they may be at times, and fly.

            You have already spoken to us this morning in a multitude of ways. Most of them are simple and down to earth, like the things mothers do on a daily basis. Keep speaking to us this hour. Perhaps we should say, help us to keep listening. As we do, we notice a heavenly choir singing, your eternal Word being spoken through the all-too-inadequate words we utter, as well in the pauses and silences of our time together.

            Your eye is, indeed, upon the sparrow and upon us... and we can't help but sing for joy - which we do in Jesus' name. Amen.

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

It is time to give back to God our tithe or offering from what we have so richly been given. Let's allow the words of the Psalmist to become our thanksgiving. Listen prayerfully.

12What shall I return to the Lord for all his bounty to me? 13I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord, 14I will pay my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people. 15Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful ones. 16O Lord, I am your servant; I am your servant, the child of your serving girl. You have loosed my bonds. 17I will offer to you a thanksgiving sacrifice and call on the name of the Lord. 18I will pay my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people, 19in the courts of the house of the Lord, in your midst, O Jerusalem. Praise the Lord!     (Psalm 116:12-19)

scripture text from the New Revised Standard Version,
copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the
National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Dramatic Reading
Luke 24:13-35

N (narrator) reads from the lectern. C (Cleopas) and D (unnamed Disciple) walk down the center aisle as reading starts, coming upon J (Jesus), who is standing up front, about the time he is first mentioned in the text.

N - The actual day of our Easter celebration is now two weeks past, but the story continues - how the risen Christ appeared to those first disciples and they came to life, and how the same is true for us today. Listen to the following resurrection story from Luke's gospel. It takes place on that first day of a new creation, when our Lord rose from the dead. Listen, and may your hearts burn within you also. (pause)


N - Now on that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and went with them, but their eyes were kept from recognizing him. And he said to them,

J - "What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?"

N - They stood still, looking sad. (pause as C&D "stand still and look sad") Then one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answered him,

C - "Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have taken place there in these days?"

N - He asked them,

J - "What things?"

N - They replied,

D - "The things about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and leaders handed him over to be condemned to death and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel.

C - "Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things took place. Moreover, some women of our group astounded us. They were at the tomb early this morning, and when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive.

D - "Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but they did not see him."

N - Then he said to them,

J - "Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! Was it not necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?"

N - Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures. As they came near the village to which they were going, (J starts to walk away, then is stopped by C&D) he walked ahead as if he were going on. But they urged him strongly, saying,

C - "Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over."

N - So he went in to stay with them. (pause as all 3 sit down on the top step, with J in the middle, who takes out a loaf of bread at the appropriate moment, and does as the text says) When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight. (pause as J quietly stands walks away - wait until he is gone before continuing) They said to each other,

D - "Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road,

C - "while he was opening the scriptures to us?" Yes!

(C&D get up and walk down steps and stand facing congregation just before the first occupied pew)

N - That same hour they got up and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven and their companions gathered together. They heard from these others that the Lord had, indeed, risen, and had appeared to Simon. Then they told what had happened on the road to Emmaus, and how the risen Christ had been made known to them in the breaking of the bread.

C -  Amen!

D - Amen!

N - Amen!

Text (with vs. 34 slightly amended for clarity) is from
New Revised Standard Version
copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the
National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.


In the simplicity of breaking bread:
      in sharing what you have;
      in reaching across an airplane seat
            to discover beside you a brother or sister;
      in walking with another disciple and
            together inviting a stranger into your circle;
      in a thousand other common,
                                      everyday experiences,
                  may you encounter the risen Christ this week.
Go now as witnesses of the resurrection,
      your hearts burning within.
            Be born anew through the living
                                            and enduring word of God.

(para traducir a espaol, presione la bandera de Espaa)


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.

For children and youth, we use the new
Gather Round curriculum
(developed jointly by the Church of the Brethren and the Mennonite Church)


2010 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)


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