WELCOME TO A DIFFERENT WAY OF WORSHIPPING
January 24, 2021
First, a word on fancy words. In worship we have this phrase we use called liturgy that feels like a formal way of having a worship leader saying stuffy things about God. The word means, “the work of the people” and liturgy is meant to be held, and owned by the worshippers, i.e. you. This service is planned to give you a path, a guide to pray, interact with scripture, wrestle with it – wrestle with God – and in so doing, have a moment of coming face to face with the divine right here, right now.
So, come and lay all the worries of the day aside. Take a deep breath, and we will start with a prayer.
PREPARATION FOR WORSHIP
In the Lord I’ll be ever thankful; in the Lord I will rejoice! Look to God; do not be afraid. Lift up your voices; the Lord is near. Lift up your voices; the Lord is near.
- Jacques Berthier, The Taizé Community
PRAYER OF INVOCATION
Almighty God, by grace alone you call us and accept us in your service. Strengthen us by your Spirit, and make us worthy of your call; through Jesus Christ our Lord who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
CALL TO CONFESSION
Trusting the promise of God’s loving grace, let us pause for a moment to bring our hearts to God.
PRAYER OF CONFESSION
Forgiving God, we turn back to you from all the ways we have drifted. You have called, but we have let your voice get lost in the noise of our culture. You have lit the way before us, while we have preferred to take our own way. Forgive us, heal us, and lead us back to you, that we may learn to show mercy to all we meet. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen
ASSURANCE OF PARDON
This is the Word of God: in Jesus Christ you are forgiven, freed, and given new life.
PROCLAMATION OF THE WORD
PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION
Holy One, giver of life and light, as your word is read and proclaimed, illumine our hearts and minds that by the power of the Holy Spirit, our lives may reflect God’s glory to all we meet. Amen.
As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake—for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me and I will make you fish for people.’ And immediately they left their nets and followed him. As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. Immediately he called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him.
Does Jesus Work at Target?
Rev. Tom Kort
Lord You Have Come
SUNDAY SCHOOL AT HOME
Although we can’t be in the same proximity physically, we can be together in spirit. We are happy to be able to provide to you age appropriate Sunday school lessons each week for you to do with your children. Click the Sunday School button to be directed to our weekly lessons.
STAYING CONNECTED FOR ADULTS
Faith Formation is pleased to announce the following adult learning opportunities that are meeting “virtually” while we “shelter in place”. Anyone is welcome to participate. Contact information and more details can be found by clicking the Adult Opportunities button.
RESPONDING TO THE WORD
Prayers of the People and the Lord’s Prayer
The reflection below is the prayer that begins the opening chapter of St. Augustine’s Confessions. Perhaps the most famous work of devotion, this book is part, on-going prayer, reflection, story, and – well – confession. Today we use these words to consider the unexpected ways God meets us, resides with us, holds us in company, and provides us with support and comfort and grace.
You are great Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is your power, and to your wisdom there is no end. And humans, being part of your creation, desire to praise you – humans, who carry with us our mortality, the witness of our sin and the witness that you resist the proud. Yet, humanity, this part of your creation, desires to praise you, for you have formed us for yourself; and our hearts are restless until they find rest in you.
O how will I call on God, my God and Lord, since when I call for him, I will be calling him into myself? And what room is there within me, where my God can come into me? Where can God come into me, God who made heaven and earth? Is there, indeed, O Lord my God, anything in me that can contain you?
Since you fill heaven and earth do they contain you? Or, because nothing which exists could exist without you, does therefore whatever exists contain you? Since then, I too exist, why do I seek that you should enter me. I would not be if you were not in me. Why? Because I am not gone down in hell, and yet you are there also. For if I go down into hell, you are there. I could not be then, O my God, could not be at all, if you were not in me; or rather, unless I were in you, of whom are all things, by whom are all things, in whom are all things! Even so, Lord, even so. From where should I call you, since I am in you? Or where can you enter me? For where can I go beyond heaven and earth, that there my God should come into me, who has said, “I fill the heaven and the earth?”
O God, the vessels which you fill do not contain you, since though we were broken, you were not poured out. You were not cast down, but you uplift us. You are not scattered, we are drawn together.
You are invited to silently lift the names of particular people or situations that weigh heavily on your soul at this time.
We seal these prayers with the one he taught us, saying together:
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 debts as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and power and the glory, Amen.
How can we pray for you?
Click the button to send us your prayer concerns and joys and stay connected.
OFFERING OUR GIFTS
Jesus invites us to make our lives a testament to his. Jesus inspires us to live as witnesses pointing back to him as the source of a light too beautiful to be hid or ignored. Your life can become a beacon of God’s irresistible grace in this world, beckoning others to see for themselves.
We can join in this work by volunteering to help our neighbors, by joining with our ministries to continue making an impact in the lives of our fellow church members – like helping to teach our children. We can also help by pledging to support this church community financially as we make a bigger and bigger impact in our local, regional, and even international communities.
If you have struggled finding a way to help support the work PCW does in our local and broader community in these days of worshipping remotely, remember, you can send checks to 140 Mountain Avenue, Westfield, NJ 07090, or email Tina Barulli at email@example.com if you have that ability.
Christ calls to us with a purpose, a way of life meant to change us, and the world.
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the one who calls us to new life; the love of the Father, who calls us back to abundant life; and the communion of the Holy Spirit, who sustains us still with every breath we take, be with you now and always. Amen.
PASSING THE PEACE
Peace be with you
Please pass the peace of our Lord, Jesus Christ, to your neighbors.
Assorted liturgy from this worship service were taken and/or adapted from the Feasting on the Word liturgy book for Year B. This worship resource is full of beautiful reflections on scripture and continue to inspire God’s people.