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St. Paul Lutheran Church
In these days between Ascension and Pentecost, we gather with the disciples in the upper room, waiting for the Spirit to transform the church around the world. In today’s gospel Jesus prays for his followers and for their mission in his name. Amid religious, social, and economic divisions, we seek the unity that Jesus had with his Father. Made one in baptism, we go forth to live our faith in the world, eager for the unity that God intends for the whole human family.
ORDER OF WORSHIP
May 24, 2020
Making room for God
8:45a.m. – The Sanctuary welcomes all into quiet contemplation. For the sake of those around you, please respect this centering time.
Welcome – Visioning
P We pause to ask God what he would have us do and listen for his response.
*CONFESSIONS & FORGIVENESS
All may make the sign of the cross, the sign marked at baptism, as the presiding minister begins.
P Blessed be the holy Trinity, ☩ one God, the eternal voice from heaven, the anointed and beloved one, the Spirit moving over the waters.
Thanksgiving for Baptism
Alleluia! Christ is risen.
Christ is risen indeed. Alleluia!
Joined to Christ in the waters of baptism, we are raised with him to new life.
Let us give thanks for the gift of baptism.
We give you thanks, O God, for in the beginning you created us in your image
and planted us in a well-watered garden.
In the desert you promised pools of water for the parched,
and you gave us water from the rock.
When we did not know the way,
you sent the Good Shepherd to lead us to still waters.
At the cross, you watered us from Jesus’ wounded side,
and on this day, you shower us again with the water of life.
We praise you for your salvation through water,
for the water in this font,
and for all water everywhere.
Bathe us in your forgiveness, grace, and love.
Satisfy the thirsty, and give us the life only you can give.
To you be given honor and praise
through Jesus Christ our Lord
in the unity of the Holy Spirit, now and forever.
*PRAYER OF THE DAY
P O God of glory, your Son Jesus Christ suffered for us and ascended to your right hand. Unite us with Christ and each other in suffering and in joy, that all the world may be drawn into your bountiful presence, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
God speaks to us in Scripture readings, preaching and song
First Reading: Acts 1:6-14
Today’s reading is part of the introduction to the narrative of the outpouring of the Spirit on Pentecost. These verses tell of the risen Lord’s conversation with his disciples on the eve of his ascension, in which he promises that they will receive the power of the Holy Spirit.
6When [the apostles] had come together, they asked [Jesus], “Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7He replied, “It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. 8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” 9When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. 11They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
12Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day’s journey away. 13When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. 14All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers.
Psalm: Psalm 68:1-10, 32-35
Let God arise, and let God’s enemies be scattered;
let those who | hate God flee.
2As smoke is driven away, so you should drive | them away;
as the wax melts before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.
3But let the righteous be glad and rejoice | before God;
let them also be mer- | ry and joyful.
4Sing to God, sing praises to God’s name; exalt the one who | rides the clouds;
I Am is that name, rejoice | before God! R
5In your holy habita- | tion, O God,
you are a father to orphans, defend- | er of widows;
6you give the solitary a home and bring forth prisoners | into freedom;
but the rebels shall live in | desert places.
7O God, when you went forth be- | fore your people,
when you marched | through the wilderness,
8the earth quaked, and the skies poured down rain, at the presence of God, the | God of Sinai, at the presence of God, the | God of Israel.
9You sent a bountiful | rain, O God;
you restored your inheritance | when it languished.
10Your people found their | home in it;
in your goodness, O God, you have made provision | for the poor. R
32Sing to God, O kingdoms | of the earth;
sing praises | to the Lord.
33You ride in the heavens, O God, in the | ancient heavens;
you send forth your voice, your | mighty voice.
34Ascribe pow- | er to God,
whose majesty is over Israel; whose strength is | in the skies.
35How wonderful you are in your holy places, O | God of Israel,
giving strength and power to your people! | Blessed be God! R
Second Reading: 1 Peter 4:12-14; 5:6-11
Our faith in Christ does not make us immune from the scorn of others. Nevertheless, we are to resist the designs of evil when we experience disparagement from others because we trust God’s grace will strengthen and guide us.
12Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that is taking place among you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13But rejoice insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, so that you may also be glad and shout for joy when his glory is revealed. 14If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory, which is the Spirit of God, is resting on you.
5:6Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you in due time. 7Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. 8Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour. 9Resist him, steadfast in your faith, for you know that your brothers and sisters in all the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. 10And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you. 11To him be the power forever and ever. Amen.
Gospel: John 17:1-11
On the night before his crucifixion, Jesus prays to his heavenly Father, asking that those who continue his work in this world will live in unity.
1After Jesus had spoken these words [to his disciples], he looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son so that the Son may glorify you, 2since you have given him authority over all people, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 3And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4I glorified you on earth by finishing the work that you gave me to do. 5So now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had in your presence before the world existed.
6“I have made your name known to those whom you gave me from the world. They were yours, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7Now they know that everything you have given me is from you; 8for the words that you gave to me I have given to them, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me. 9I am asking on their behalf; I am not asking on behalf of the world, but on behalf of those whom you gave me, because they are yours. 10All mine are yours, and yours are mine; and I have been glorified in them. 11And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.”
P The gospel of the Lord. C Praise to you, O Christ.
Prayers of Intercession
A Uplifted by the promised hope of healing and resurrection, we join the people of God in all times and places in praying for the church, the world, and all who are in need.
A brief silence.
A O God, call your people to be one, as you are one. Unite your church in the truth of your gospel, the love of our neighbor, and the call to proclaim your reign to all people. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
A Breathe life into your creation. Guide your people as we explore the mysteries of the universe. We pray for the work of scientists and mathematicians whose skill enriches our understanding Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
A Make your justice known among the nations of the earth. Protect the vulnerable (especially all nations currently in crisis with the Coronavirus). Redirect those who use violence and greed as weapons. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
A Come to the aid of your children. We pray for those engulfed in grief, those without supportive families, and for all who are isolated, powerless, or afraid, that all may rest their anxieties in your care. Also, victims of disaster and those affected by and serving in wars, and all those we name aloud or in our hearts before you now. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
A Give courage to all who embark on new ventures. We especially remember this day those who risked their lives to serve in our armed forces. Grant safety to those serving at home or abroad, and assure them of your never-failing strength. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
A Raise all your saints to eternal life. Until that day, we give you thanks for the faithful examples of those who have listened to your voice and now rest in you. Lord, in your mercy,
hear our prayer.
P With bold confidence in your love, almighty God, we place all for whom we pray into your eternal care; through Christ our Lord.
|Mary Lynn Gagnon||Arlene Malena||Karen DiTomasso|
|Anita DiVita||Shirley Ekstrom||Mark DellaVecchia|
|Terry Luther||Alice Colburn||Valerie Francis|
|Jerry Fedorovich||Laurie Colburn||Bruce Thorrtenson|
|Charlie Gray||Eileen Turner||Ed Bartis|
|Sharon Gray||Bob Johnson||Skip Henke|
|Alexis Sharp||Gene Bald||Mia Devine|
|Ann Schultz||Cesar Deleon Mena||Teresa Brauer|
|Haley Mitnick||Phyllis Cote||Judy Ford|
|Kerry Ekstrom||Matt Bendzinski||Chuck Ford|
Bold names are members, non-bold names are Non-members.
Also, victims of disaster and those affected by and serving in wars, and all those we name aloud or in our hearts before you now.
Merciful God, our ordinary gifts seem small for such a celebration, but you make of them an abundance, just as you do with our lives.
Feed us again at this table for service in your name, in the strength of the risen Christ.
Invitation to Communion
Come to the banquet. Behold the risen Christ.
P Gathered into one by the Holy Spirit; let us pray as Jesus taught us:
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;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
forever and ever. Amen.
Prayer after Communion
Life-giving God, you have fed us with your word, and our hearts burn within us.
Through this meal you have opened us to your presence.
Now send us forth to share the gifts of Easter with all in need; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
May the One who brought forth Jesus from the dead raise you to new life, fill you with hope, and turn your mourning into dancing.
Almighty God, Father, ☩ Son, and Holy Spirit, bless you now and forever.
Christ is risen, just as he said.
Go in peace. Share the good news. Alleluia!
Thanks be to God. Alleluia!
May 24, 2020
SEVENTH SUNDAY OF EASTER
Decades beyond her early childhood, from time to time she repeats the bedtime prayer she has never forgotten: “Now I lay me down to sleep. I pray the Lord my soul to keep. Guard me, Jesus, through the night, and wake me with the morning light.” What then follows is the threading of names, precious like pearls, on a string. “God bless . . . ,” she begins, then lists mom, dad, grandmas, grandpas, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, all by name. Then teachers she liked, friends nearby and hungry children afar, the sick neighbor, the old man in the library, the blind lady at the post office, the lifeguard at the beach. Sometimes there is an “Amen,” but often sleep comes first.
Jesus washes the feet of his disciples, shares a farewell meal with them, and teaches for the last time about his way of love. He promises again the presence of the Spirit and the coming of God’s peace. Then, at the end of the day, he prays that God will be with his followers—and he prays for each of us. Jesus prays for his disciples, that they might know the love of God just as much as they know the real person of Jesus.
Jesus’ prayer is also a prayer for unity. Jesus prays that we may be one just as he and God are one. Jesus prays, “All mine are yours, and yours are mine” (John 17:10). Following Jesus’ example, we also may pray for the unity of all people with God, and the reconciling of peoples and all creation. We pray that what the world rejects God will receive. We pray that what the world divides God will make one. We pray that what the world threatens God will protect.
May we be comforted by Jesus’ prayer for us, and may we be so emboldened to pray ourselves for the blessing, presence, and unity found in our risen Lord and Savior.
Please note: We stand with many in the faith community – including His Holiness Pope Francis, The Dali Lama, Presiding ELCA Bishop Elizabeth Eaton – who are calling us to remember that we who call ourselves Christian are not to condemn another because of their faith or ethnicity. As a nation of immigrants, we proudly endorse the heritage of this land, proclaiming with Emma Lazurus the words emblazoned on the Statue of Liberty:
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
Notice: Pledges (time, financial gifts and your personal talents) allow the church some idea of what we may plan for the future. Pledges may be mailed in to 134 Main Street Terryville CT 06786 Attn: Finance, dropped in the offering plate or communicated to the staff. Remember God only asks for 10% off the top – won’t you consider tithing this year?
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St Paul Luther Church Christmas Season December 2019
Saint Lucinda Sunday 2nd week in Advent
Christmas Eve 2019
Aug. 16, 2015 – St Paul served 110 people at Cathedral of the night, click on this link for pictures…
St Paul children’s dowel team in action, click here
“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.”
― Corrie ten Boom
Our Advent altar
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