Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
January 6, 2013
Worship 10:00 am          Sunday School 11:10am


      May all kings fall down before him, all nations give him service. For he delivers the needy when they call, the poor and those who have no helper. He has pity on the weak and the needy, and saves the lives of the needy. From oppression and violence he redeems their life; and precious is their blood in his sight. Long may he live!”
                                              (Psalm 72: 11-15a)

   Beginning with Praise (9:50 am)           "Bright and glorious is the sky"           219

 *Beginning with the Word in motion                        Isaiah 60:1-7

*Hymn                            "As with gladness men of old"”                              218

*Opening Prayer

  For Children                         "Being Radiant"

  Prayer of Confession                    (response:)
                         This little light of mine, help me to let it shine (2x)
                                     let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

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

  Pastoral Prayer

  Scripture                                 Ephesians 3:1-12

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

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

  Scripture                                 Matthew 2:1-12

  Message                         "Grandpa’s Typewriter" (mp3)

*Hymn                                      "We three kings"                              (see insert)



*Rise in body or in spirit

#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Oscar Sylvander Peterson
with grandson, Peter

Oscar's typewriter
(a gift to his grandson)

Beginning with the Word in motion
Isaiah 60:1-7

             On this first Sunday of the year 2013, on this very day of Epiphany, we celebrate that the twelve days of Christmas are past and that the light of Christ shines out beyond the manger into all the world. It is fitting to do more than sit as we respond to the good news. Let us, instead, embody the Word of God. Isaiah 60 is full of action, so let us stretch our body’s muscles. As I read this scripture, phrase by phrase, please follow what you see me/Robyn do. This is the Word of God calling us into worship.

            (motion for all to rise)

            (stretch arms upward)

for your light has come,
            (stretch arms outward)

and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.
            (place palms on head)

For darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples;
            (bring elbows in and head down with palms still on head)

but the Lord will arise upon you,
            (stretch arms upward)

and his glory will appear over you.
            (stretch outward and downward, then upward in circular motion)

Nations shall come to your light,
            (same motion, but just left arm)

and kings to the brightness of your dawn.
            (now with the right arm)

Lift up your eyes and look around;
            (arms stretched outward, turn neck to left then right)

they all gather together,
            (stretch arms forward)

they come to you;
            (pull arms in to an embrace)

your sons shall come from far away,
            (stretch right arm up and outward, then bring to left side of waist)

and your daughters shall be carried on their nurses’ arms.
            (stretch left arm up and outward, then bring in to right elbow and form a cradle position)

Then you shall see and be radiant;
            (look into your arms and smile)

your heart shall thrill and rejoice,
            (place both palms over your heart)

because the abundance of the sea shall be brought to you,
            (with hands still cupped, stretch arms forward to the left)

the wealth of the nations shall come to you.
            (stretch arms with cupped hands  to the right)

A multitude of camels shall cover you,
            (pretending to hold the reins, bend knees slightly up and down, as if riding)

the young camels of Midian and Ephah;
            (same motion, but step to the left)

all those from Sheba shall come.
            (same motion, now step to the right)

They shall bring gold and frankincense,
            (hold arms forward, with palms raised, as if holding a large  box)

and shall proclaim the praise of the Lord.
            (stretch arms upward)

All the flocks of Kedar shall be gathered to you,
            (stretch left arm outward)

the rams of Nebaioth shall minister to you;
            (stretch right arm outward)

they shall be acceptable on my altar,
            (bring arms together forward, with palms raised)

and I will glorify my glorious house.
            (stretch arms upward)

 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.

Opening Prayer

             God of all time, we praise and adore you for breaking into the darkness of this world with the glorious light of your presence.  A light which made your love for the world visible in the babe born in Bethlehem - Jesus Christ, your Son, our Savior.  A light which guided those gift-bearing travelers from afar to find and worship the Christ-child.  A light which leads us to you, now revealed in Jesus Christ.  We pray that you will accept our worship for it arises from hearts and minds in awe over the enormity of your gift to us of pure love. In Jesus’ name we pray.  Amen

by Rev Moira Laidlaw, Uniting Church in Australia

For Children
"Being Radiant"

(simplify, if younger children are present)

             Most, if not all of you, have done something here in church that is important for today. You have served as an acolyte. You have come forward at the beginning of worship and done what? That’s right, you have lit the candles on the worship table. Why do we light these candles? They remind us of God, of Jesus, of the Holy Spirit. 

             1 John 1:5 says that, “God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” On the day of Pentecost, when the church was born, it says that the Holy Spirit came noisily from heaven and filled everyone. When they tried to tell what it looked like, all they could say was that it “seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each” person. A “tongue of fire,” like on a candle. Light!

             When you light the candles up front, you remind all of us that God is here. What we do in worship isn’t just a bunch of talk about us. God is very near. The light of the world is with us. The fire of the Lord is upon us. All of that from just lighting these candles. That’s a pretty important job! It’s an “epiphany” job. Today is Epiphany. Yes, we remember the wise men who followed a star to Jesus on this day, but we also celebrate how the light of Christ shines out to all people everywhere. And every person who loves and follows Jesus, no matter where they live, carries the light with them.

             That’s also what you tell us at the end of worship. You come forward and light your candle off the Christ candle and take it with you. Even after you put out the light up front, you carry your light out through the congregation. In doing this, you remind us that the light does not stay here in this room when we leave. God goes with us wherever we go. And wherever we are this coming week, this light can shine in us. We can be radiant. Of course, sometimes we forget about Jesus, and then the light of Christ doesn’t shine out in us very well. We aren’t radiant.

            Would you assist me as I lead the congregation in a prayer of confession, asking God to help us to let our light shine? After each prayer you help me read, _______* (a not-yet-reader) will hold up his candle as a sign for all of us to sing:

This little light of mine, help me to let it shine (2x)
let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.
simple accompaniment)

 Let’s practice.

*use or omit, depending on which children are present. Adapt to fit.

Prayer of Confession

God, I want to let my let my light shine.
            Help me to follow Jesus. 

This little light of mine, help me to let it shine (2x)
let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.
(see simple accompaniment)

Sometimes I say things that hurt other people.
            Help me to be kind.

Sometimes I forget to share.
            Help me to love.

Sometimes I insist on doing things MY way.
            Help me to be considerate.

Sometimes I am afraid.
            Help me to be brave.

God, I want to let my let my light shine.
            Help me to follow Jesus.


Pastoral Prayer

 Sing together first a chorus based upon Psalm 27:1 –
The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?
the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid
(music by Pauline Mills)

             O God, whose star led wise men to the manger, grant strength and courage to all who look to you for light and salvation. Sustain them along their journey, whether they travel the speed of a camel’s gait or a nurse’s walk, a race to completion or a long wait.  Protect them from danger along the way. However, if trouble intrudes, surround them with angels, seen or unseen, silent or sounding out glory. Lead them to you.

             As we pray for others, we pray for ourselves. We, too, grow afraid, for just as wise men and women still seek, so also do those who desire harm instead of good. We, too, have our fears, as we examine our years, and give in to our aches and pains, and wander away from the light. Lead us to you, that your flame within us might brighten and our light shine. Then, like that star over Bethlehem long ago, may we – through who we are, as well as by our words and deeds – play a role in your ongoing gospel story of "kingdom come and will be done on earth as it is in heaven."

             Continue blessing this worship with your presence. Thank you for including us in the simple, open mystery of the gospel, and for ears to hear and minds to ponder and feet to journey in the direction you lead. This we pray in the name of the One whom you sent to show the Way. Amen.

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

             Of any Sunday in the church year, today seems most suited for a time of offering. We have the example of the Magi, who came bearing their gifts. Like them, we have treasure to offer, though probably not any gold, frankincense, or myrrh. Our treasure has not ridden with us for many miles on the back of a camel. Still, in response to the gift of God’s grace, what we bring can be just as meaningful, especially if it is more than a piece of paper tossed without thinking into a plate passed before us.

            On this sixth day of a brand new year, we are grateful for the gift of our days. Will we offer our time to the Lord in return? We have been given ability and energy, in varying degree depending on our own unique personality and stage of life. Will we offer our actions to the Lord in response? We have been blessed with relationships all around us. Will we return to God our open hands and hearts, extended to loved ones, neighbors, as well as even strangers?

            As the ushers lead us in our offering, ponder how you have already, like the apostle Paul, “become a servant according to the gift of God’s grace that was given (you) by the working of God’s power(Ephesians 3:7). Then, be a wise man or woman of the Lord, and bring your gift to Jesus. 



Epiphany is an unveiling,
                      a manifestation,
                      a revelation,
                    an eye-opener,
                      a glorious self exposé by God in Christ Jesus.
Let us go our separate ways,
         carrying the light of that revelation
                  into every shady situation and
 every dark corner. 

May the God of all grace be the strength in your hands,
May the Christ of all light be the guide for your feet, and
May the Spirit of all truth be the integrity in our deeds.

adapted from Benediction by Bruce Prewer,
Uniting Church in Australia


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:
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)

International Lesson:
International Bible Lesson
a weekly column by L.G. Parkhurst, Jr.
in "The Oklahoman" newspaper
also found

International Lesson:
Living Web Sunday School Project

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)


©2012 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)


return to
Worship Orders

return to

return to

return to
Long Green Valley Church