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Bulletin – Sunday, April 26, 2020

April 26, 2020
Third Sunday of Easter

Approach

Candle Lighting

Call to Worship

We gather as people on a journey.

We believe and we have doubts, we do good and we sin. We are imperfect humans, and still beloved by God.

Love and grace. Hope and faith. These are the essence of the one we call God.

We seek forgiveness and grace from the One and from those we’ve harmed.

Assured of that grace, we are ready to grow again.

We yearn for a new way, a new perspective, and a clear path.

Though we are full of trust and full of doubt, we are here.

Speak to us, God! Continue creating us! Inspire our hearts. Enlighten our minds. Guide our actions. Amen.

Hymn – “As Comes the Breath of Spring”

As comes the breath of spring with light and mirth and song,
So does your Spirit bring new days brave, free, and strong.
You come with thrill of life to chase hence winter’s breath,
To hush to peace the strife of sin that ends in death.

You come live songs at morn that fill the earth with joy,
Till we, in Christ new-born, new strength in praise employ.
You come to rouse the heart from drifting to despair,
Through high hopes to impart life with an ampler air.

You breathe and there is health; you move and there is power,
You whisper, there is wealth of love, your richest dower.
Your presence is to us like summer in the soul;
Your joy shines forth and then life blossoms to its goal

Prayer

Loving God, as we come before you today, we know that the light of your love shines on illuminating the places where you are present. We feel as bewildered as the disciples who pondered the stories of your appearance.

Yet you penetrated the darkness of their fear and doubt with your word of peace. You showed them the appalling marks of evil pierced on your hands and feet. You opened their minds to understand why you had to die to defeat such evil and death.

Creator God, we confess that at times we truly are those skeptics. At times we doubt that you exist because of the evil we have seen in the world. Oppression, marginalization, and plain hate still plague our world, and it is hard to see your love and light.

Sometimes, even those who bear your name do not walk in your ways. Help us to see your goodness in this world. Help us to know your love. Fill us with your love and goodness, so that we might love one another, and lift up one another in faith. Amen.

Words of Assurance / Blessing (from Psalm 27:13-14)

Hymn – “Jesus, Stand Among Us”

Jesus, stand among us in your risen power;
Let this time of worship be a hallowed hour.

Breathe the Holy Spirit into every heart;
Bid the fears and sorrows from each soul depart.

Lead our hearts to wisdom till our doubting cease.
And to all assembled speak your word of peace.

The Word

Scripture Reading:

John 20:19-31

Hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church.

Thanks be to God!

Meditation – “Doubting (put name here)

Anthem – “Doubters”

The Response

Pastoral Prayer

In the evening when the disciples met, frightened behind locked doors, You came to them with words of peace. For wicked pots have failed, and the cruelty of the world has come to nothing, and the betrayal and the denial of friends have not prevailed.

Life-giving God, we give you thanks for Jesus has risen. He comes to us with words of peace.

Come to us today. In government rooms where politicians meet. In city board rooms where executives plan, in court rooms where lawyers debate,

Come to us with words of peace.

In hospital rooms where people are waiting, in prison cells where people are afraid, in homes where people struggle to make ends meet,

Come to us with words of peace.

In times when we are afraid. Whenever we are grieving. Come to us now we pray in silence. For those we care for and are worried about…

Despite the strong and solid doors we lock to protect ourselves to shut our the world,

Come to us with words of peace.

This Easter breathe on us again with your Spirit. When we feel as if evil has overcome and hatred has prevailed and the cruelty of the world seems everywhere. Where there seems to be nothing but lies and betrayal and denial of your true message.

Come to us with words of peace.

Renew us in the power of your Spirit. That even though we may not open the doors today and we can’t go out into the world, let us bring words of peace to all the people in our lives.

Renew in us the power of your Spirit. That we may have life in your name as we continue to pray in the words that 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.

Hymn – “All the Way My Saviour Leads Me”

All the way my Saviour leads me; what have I to ask beside?
Can I doubt his tender mercy who through life has been my guide?
Heavenly peace, divinest comfort, here by faith in him to dwell,
For I know, what-e’er befall me, Jesus doeth all things well.

All the way my Saviour leads me, cheers each winding path I tread,
Gives me grace for every trial, feeds me with the living bread.
Though me weary steps may falter, and my soul athirst may be,
Gushing from the rock before me, lo, a spring of joy I see!

All the way my Saviour leads me; O the fullness of his love;
Perfect rest to me is promised in my Father’s house above
When spirit, clothed immortal, wings its flight to realms of day,
This  my song through endless ages, “Jesus led me all the way!”

Benediction

Go forth in joy. You have God’s kingdom in your heart.

Go forth in love. Live for God.

Go with hope and forgiveness. The grace of God sustains.

Go forth in peace. Go forth in light.

And know that as you go forth, God goes with you each and every step of the way. Hallelujah and Amen.

Response – “Like a Rock”

Like a rock, like a rock, God is under our feet.
Like the starry night sky, God is over our hear.
Life the sun on the horizon, God is ever before.
Like the river runs to ocean, our home is in God evermore.

Categories: General News, Sunday Bulletin and Announcements, Worship