October 4, 2020 - Home Worship Service

Welcome & Announcements: Good morning church!

Just a quick announcement: This week communion will be offered during the 9am ZOOM worship that Pastor Jenn leads. Have on hand bread/crackers and some form of juice. If you cannot connect, the communion elements will be blessed by 10am Sunday morning, including your own. You may read the blessing after the message below and know by 10 am you can take the elements for communion.)

We continue to offer in person worship at Lightstreet. No reservations needed.

8am contemporary service in the Lighthouse and 10:30am is our traditional service in the church sanctuary. You will need a mask and will be asked to be spaced apart from others unless you are sitting with those in your household. Both will have live musicians!

No Sunday School just yet.

Another alternative for worship is Sunday 9:00 am Zoom Worship & Prayer

Pastor Jenn and your church leaders invite you to ZOOM, Sunday morning, 9:00 am. 

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85441468430?pwd=aEJmcnJ3SGdkbWphMnlRV3JwQ3dXQT09

  Meeting ID: 854 4146 8430        Password: 279040

One tap mobile:  +19294362866,,85441468430#,,,,0#,,279040# US (New York)

For audio only using a landline or non-smart phone:  1 929 436 2866 US (New York)

Worship:

I invite you to light a candle to welcome the Light of the World in your presence and prepare your heart for worship this day

Call to Worship

The promises of the world turn to ashes and dust,

but the promises of God last forever.

The Holy One calls to us: “Come!”

We come to rekindle the gift of God ablaze within us.

 

Opening Song: O Come to the Altar by the LUMC Praise Band

https://soundcloud.com/jennifer-parks-snyder/o-come-to-the-altar/s-5NUQ7H6qHjN

Are you hurting and broken within?  Overwhelmed by the weight of your sin?
Jesus is calling
Have you come to the end of yourself?  Do you thirst for a drink from the well?
Jesus is calling

 

O come to the altar, the Father's arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with the precious blood of Jesus Christ

 

Leave behind your regrets and mistakes.  Come today, there's no reason to wait
Jesus is calling
Bring your sorrows and trade them for joy.  From the ashes, a new life is born
Jesus is calling

 

O come to the altar, the Father's arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with the precious blood of Jesus Christ
Forgiveness was bought with the precious blood!...

 

Oh, what a Savior, isn't He wonderful?  Sing hallelujah, Christ is risen
Bow down before Him, for He is Lord of all!  Sing hallelujah, Christ is risen (repeat)

 

O come to the altar, the Father's arms are open wide
Forgiveness was bought with the precious blood of Jesus Christ!

 

Opening Prayer

Source of grace and peace, You call us into being; You keep us in safety; You hold us in life. Far too often, we turn from You, placing our trust in the frail promises of other human beings and the insecure security of wealth. Be with us now. Bring us into Your presence. Comfort our pain. Challenge our pride.  Enter into our prayer and our praise, that our worship may be pleasing to You. We pray these things in the name of the One who loved us first, Jesus Christ. Amen.

 

Children’s time: It's our children's time and I want to start with a question I ask you each and every week: Who are you? Children Respond: Special Gifts of God!

 

PJ: That's right, you are special gifts of God each and every day and I'm so lucky to spend time with you!

 

Today is Worldwide Communion. And what that means is Christians all over the world will be taking bread and juice to remember God’s love for us in Jesus.

 

But what type of bread may vary. Some will take small wafers. Some will take a flat bread. Some will take white bread. And some will take rice cakes.

And what type of juice is taken will vary, too. Some will take grape juice, like we do, others will take grape wine, and still others rice wine.

 

No matter the differences in the types of bread or juice or wine, the meaning is all the same. Jesus took what was known and familiar to His friends and used it as reminder of God’s love for us. And when we receive that reminder, our response is to give that love back to each other, to everyone all over the world. No matter if we are Christians who take communion with bread or cake or juice or wine. No matter if people are not Christians, we are called to love them so that in us, people can learn of the love of Jesus.

 

Prayer: Thank you God for this day to remember You do love us in Jesus, and He leads us to us to love others, all over the world. Amen.

 

Prayer: (we will share in the Lord’s Prayer during Communion) Prayer for World Communion Sunday

 

Lord as we gather in Your Church, everywhere and in every place; grace us with Your presence as we quietly and loudly pray to You. May we see in each other Your light, Your love and You. May it not matter our differences, our names, our languages, our looks, and our way of doing things. May what matters today and everyday be that we are one in You.

And as we pray, may we call to mind our brothers and sisters who are unable to be with us today whether in body or spirit. May You bring comfort to those who are grieving, lonely, heartbroken, ill, or broken of spirit. May You strengthen those whose lives feel shattered, in crisis, and experiencing loss.

May You say the healing word to those who need it. May You bring the human touch of love to those who have not been touched. May You love the unloved through us. May You shine Your light into those whose world is covered in darkness. May You use us to feed the hungry, clothe the ones who need clothes, give a cup of water to those who are thirsty, shelter the homeless, visit the sick and those in prison. May lives be awakened to You, Lord, to Your love and to Your kingdom whose door is always open to all. [1]

            Hear our prayers O God in the name of Jesus who taught us how to live, how to build community, and how to pray, in Your Name. Amen.

 

Offering Invitation:

Today may you know that a portion of your gifts are sent throughout the world to feed and clothe people in need. Your gifts reflect God’s grace. Thank you for that support.

 

Offering Prayer: Fount of blessing, You pour upon us the abundance of Your grace. Bless us and these gifts, that they may be a source of blessing to others, in the name Jesus Christ. Amen.

 

Gospel Lesson: Mark 14:22-25 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

The Institution of the Lord’s Supper

22 While they were eating, He took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it He broke it, gave it to them, and said, “Take; this is My body.” 23 Then He took a cup, and after giving thanks He gave it to them, and all of them drank from it. 24 He said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. 25 Truly I tell you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”

Sermon: Today’s Worldwide Communion

The world has changed since that first last supper, as we call it. I mean think about how when Jesus gathered the disciples together for that meal there was no electricity, no running water.

They washed their hands and feet with water poured from a pitcher into a basin.

The bread they ate would have been baked over a fire.

And the cup and plates would have been created by a potter, not a machine.

The world has changed. So, what would Jesus do today?

Well first off, He would gather His faithful followers, both men and women. He would tell them masks are required because Jesus was a responsible dude. He cared for the welfare of all. I imagine His masks might look like this: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/24629129200696862/

The place they would gather would be an outside space to eat. They would wear their masks, and when they began to eat, take them off.

If any of the disciples were running late, Jesus might whip out his phone and text: “Peter where are you, you’re always running late?”

Or “I know what you’re doing Judas” with a contemplative emoji.

 

He might possibly check Facebook to see what Zacchaeus was saying about his day or comparing what Mary and Martha had to say about each other?

 

But then he would put that phone away, and he would probably take the disciples to a sink and one by one, wash their hands with warm soapy water, after all, they were fishermen, farmers, workers who got their hands dirty. He would enforce the 20 seconds of washing rule maybe by singing a song the CDC recommends like Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive, or possibly the Doxology, Praise God from whom all blessings flow….

 

And then as they sat at the table, six feet apart, He would invite them to take the bread that was placed on their plates (wrapped in saran wrap) and Jesus would offer a prayer of thanksgiving to God for the bread, and reveal to His followers it is a symbol of His body broken for them.

The disciples would eat it, with honestly the symbolism lost on them, as they had not seen Jesus body broken yet.

Then Jesus would invite them to take the cup that was before them, more than likely, a plastic cup filled with grape juice that could be recycled afterwards. And He would still say “This is my blood of the new covenant poured out for you and for the forgiveness of sins.”

Because even though the world has changed, the impact hasn’t, neither have we. We still need this gift, just as the disciples did years ago. Because this is a powerful message of God’s love, God’s hope for your life and mine.

In these elements we remember that. We remember His body, born of Mary in a stable. That grew up to walk our walk. This isn’t just bread; this is a reminder of a God who lived our life. In Jesus, God knew the struggles of working to earn money to pay the bills. Being a carpenter, He knew that. In Jesus, God knew the struggles of weakness and hunger. Like when He fasted for 40 days and 40 nights in order to rely more on God and less on other resources. In Jesus, God even died our death and rose again for our sake, living for you and me The bread reminds us of that.

And in the cup, we remember all that Jesus gave and all that He did. He offered a better way to understand and know God. A God who offers us a helping hand with our fears, like when we feel we are sinking in the waters. In the cup we remember a God who multiplies good deeds through others, when we all agree to share what we have, like fish and bread. In the cup we remember we are told to forgive our brother or sister not 7 times but 70 times 7. Not because they deserve it, but because we deserve not to carry that pain around. In the cup, we remember forgiveness and new life.

You see, after the resurrection, and after the birth of the Church, this is why the disciples would gather daily, and why today some Christians gather weekly to partake of the bread and the cup. When followers of Christ gather in Jesus’ name, the breaking of bread and sharing of the cup is a means of remembering His life, death, and resurrection and of encountering the living Christ.

With this meal, we experience afresh the presence of our risen Lord and receive sustenance for our lives as disciples. Just as the disciples needed that in the days of the early church, we need that, too, because it is so easy to forget, to get caught up in the world and its ways, when we need to: Remember our God, remember our life with God, through Jesus Christ, as the Spirit of the Church.

And today we not only remember those aspects of our faith, but we remember that God has brought us all together in this great act of thanksgiving. It is Worldwide Communion, and so the believers of Christ all take this day to renew our memories of what it means to be part of the Church. So, our brothers and sisters in Christ in the churches of inner city, celebrate with us. Our brothers and sisters in Christ in churches in the small towns celebrate with us. Our brothers and sisters in Christ quarantined in their homes, celebrate with us. And our brothers and sisters in Christ in nations and countries that are torn apart with political upheavals, civil wars, famine, and natural disasters, are all called to celebrate with us.

Because today, in our world, we know no matter who we are, no matter our race, our gender, our socio economic status, we know no matter what elements we use to celebrate, be it wine or juice, bread or wafer, we are all in dire need to remember, remember the hope and the love, remember the forgiveness that all lead to new life.

Let us pray: Today, God, on this Worldwide Communion Sunday, give us eyes to recognize Your reflection in the eyes of Christians everywhere. Give us a mind to accept and celebrate our differences. Give us a heart big enough to love Your children everywhere. We thank You for setting a table with space and grace, enough for us all! Amen.[2]

At this time may we join together in The Great Act of Thanksgiving, starting with a time of confession.

Pastor: Christ the Lord invites to His table all who love Him, who earnestly repent of their sin, their mistakes against God and against others, and seek to live in peace with one another. Therefore, let us confess our sins before God and one another.

 

Prayer of Confession for World Communion Sunday

 

God of mercy, we confess that we have not loved You with all our being. We have done things which we ought not to have done, and we have left undone things which we ought to have done. We have built walls between neighbors and between countries, and we have ignored the cries of those in need.
Forgive us and set us free, that we may live into the hope of Your calling, that Your reign may come on earth as it is in heaven. Through Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.

 

Pastor: Thanks be to God: Jesus died for our sins.
Unison: We are forgiven! Thanks be to God.

 

The Great Act of Thanksgiving

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them up to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God

It is right to give our thanks and praise.

 

God of all nations, You created every person in Your image and called us by Your Holy Spirit to become one in Christ Jesus, through Baptism and through faith. In Jesus Christ, You showed us the way to live with unique gifts and particularities, yet in harmony with You and with each other. You, O God, are indeed above all and through all and in all.


So, today we join with voices throughout the earth and in heaven, saying:

Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might. Heaven and earth are full of Your glory. Hosanna in the highest! Blessed is the One who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest!

 

Holy are You and blessed is Your child, Jesus Christ. Jesus lived among us to show us Your love: caring enough to feed hungry persons, stopping to touch persons in need of healing, reaching out to those not like Himself: a Samaritan woman at a well, lepers from another country, those tortured by demons, a father pleading for his daughter, a woman from Syro-Phoenicia, Zacchaeus, a tax collector, a rich young ruler, and humble fishermen. When people gathered to hear His teachings, Jesus took bread, blessed it and broke it, and gave it to them to eat, so that they might be fed.

 

When Jesus ate with His disciples for His final meal on earth, they remembered His blessing on the multitude, and listened as He told them: “Take, eat, this is My body given for you.”

 

They watched as Jesus took the cup, blessed it and said, “Take, drink, this is My blood of the new covenant, poured out for you and for the whole world for the forgiveness of sins.”

 

After His death and resurrection, by the power of the Holy Spirit, the disciples told others through this meal, that Jesus was the Messiah, sent by God, for all humankind.


Remembering now, we proclaim the mystery of faith:

 

Unison: Christ has died; Christ is risen; Christ will come again.

 

Pour out Your Holy Spirit on us gathered here, and on these gifts of bread and cup. Make them be for us the body and blood of Christ, that we may be for the world the body of Christ, redeemed by His blood.  By Your Spirit may all who partake, wherever they live, know the reconciling love of Jesus Christ. May Your church go forth from Communion with You to be one in Christ and one in witness to the world. All honor and glory is Yours, almighty God, now and forever. Amen.[3]

 

Lord’s Prayer

And now the confidence of being the children of God let us pray the prayer Jesus taught us saying: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.  For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.  Amen. 

 

Breaking of the bread: Because there is one loaf, we, who are many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf. The bread which we break is a sharing in the body of Christ. Take and eat in thanksgiving.

 

Sharing of the cup:

The cup over which we give thanks is a sharing in the blood of Christ that washes us anew. Take and drink with thanksgiving.

 

Prayer after Communion: Eternal God, we give You thanks for this holy mystery in which You have given Yourself to us. Grant that we may go into the world in the strength of Your Spirit, to give ourselves for others, in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Closing Song:  Freely, Freely by Donna Farver & Linda Creasy

https://soundcloud.com/jennifer-parks-snyder/freely-1

God forgave my sin in Jesus' name. I've been born again in Jesus' name
And in Jesus' name I come to you To share His love as He told me to.

He said 'Freely, freely you have received; freely, freely give.
Go in My name, and because you believe others will know that I live.

All power is given in Jesus' name In earth and heaven in Jesus name
And in Jesus' name I come to you To share His power as He told me to.

He said 'Freely, freely you have received; freely, freely give.
Go in My name, and because you believe others will know that I live.

Benediction:

 

Go to be God's peace in the world.

We go to share God's love with all of God's children everywhere.

Be at one with your brothers and sisters throughout creation.

We go in the power of the Holy Spirit to shine God's love abroad.

Go forth to meet the world that God loves.

We go forth to be the presence of God in the world.

Go into the world, rejoicing in the power of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

 

 

 
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