Happy New Year Church!
Welcome to the Mantua Center Christian Church. Remember we gather not as perfect people, but people on a journey accompanied, known, and loved by God.
It's good to be back with you after my time of rest after Christmas. We had a great time as a family together.
Together in worship we will continue going through the Narrative Lectionary.
The goal is to go through some major parts of the bible in a year’s time and this being the first Sunday after Epiphany, we begin this season with the story of Jesus’ Baptism and the work of John the Baptist leading up to it. This Sunday gives us an opportunity to reflect on our own baptism and what it means in our lives.
So then, if you are so inclined, along with your communion cup and bread today, set aside a small bowl of water for later in the service to remember your baptism.
Together we have set this time and space aside for the worship of God. Let us prepare our hearts and minds for worship!
SONG - Weave (Pam and Beth - in the folder)
Weave, weave, weave us together. Weave us together in unity and love. Weave, weave, weave us together. Weave us together, together in love.
SCRIPTURE READING - Psalm 51:10-12 Sandi Kossick
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from your presence,
and do not take your holy spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and sustain in me a willing spirit.
OPENING HYMN Holy, Holy, Holy (chalice)
PASTORAL PRAYER - Chad Delaney
At the time of the recording of this part of the service... the headline on my television screen was that there was an armed stand-off at the door of the House of Representatives. There has already been violence and bloodshed. The chaos, hatred, and deception fomented by the president and the political games played by our nation's leaders have resulted in where we are. I am astonished, angry, and heartbroken. We are all scared for our country and we are left wondering what will happen next.
Obviously there is a lot of work to be done, no matter your own beliefs, we are all Americans and here we are people of faith and so I want to invite you to pray. Pray for the president. Pray for the President-elect. Pray for our nation’s leaders--Democrats, Republicans, and Independents. Pray for law enforcement and the national guard. Pray for peace and the courage to do what is right
Let us pray….God--who is our calm in the chaos of life--we live in a time of great uncertainty. We are awash in a global pandemic, economic insecurity, and political turmoil. All of it amplified by rampant lies and deception, the 24-hour news cycle, and the deep anxiety we all feel with everything happening.
God of Truth, we ask that you might shine a light onto our nation, into our communities, and into our hearts. Give us the strength and courage to be your people, to speak the truth, to bear the fruits of your Spirit.
Today as we remember our baptism, remind us of the covenant we made with you. Through baptismal waters you pour out your grace, your mercy, and love and beckon us to a life of servanthood in the likeness of your Son. Empower us by your Holy Spirit to renew our commitment to be who you have called us to be...even in this season of hardship, turmoil and struggle.
In these moments...
We pray for those who suffer from pains and sorrows.
We pray for those whose hearts are broken.
We pray for those whose families are fractured..
We pray for those who deceive and are deceived.
We pray for those who struggle with poverty, and starvation
We pray for those who are healers, peace-makers, and truth-tellers.
Thank you for hearing our prayers. Guide us and lead us by your Holy Spirit! In Jesus Name we pray, Amen.
SONG RESPONSE Open My Eyes, Lord (Pam and Beth - in folder)
Open our eyes Lord. We want to see Jesus.
To reach out and touch Him. And say that we love Him.
Open our ears Lord. And help us to listen.
Open our eyes Lord. We want to see Jesus.
SCRIPTURE READING Luke 3:1-22
SERMON - What Shall We Do Then? Chad
Special Music - Go Tell It On the Mountain
Carol & Emma Magyarics and Josh Masters
HOLY COMMUNION - Katie Baird
Communion Song Just As I Am (chalice)
Communion Prayer and the Lord’s Prayer
Words of Institution
As we gather around Christ’s Table we remember that on the night that Jesus was betrayed, he took the bread and broke it, gave thanks and said to his Disciples, “This is my body which is give for you, eat of it all of you in remembrance of me.” In like manner he took the cup and blessed it saying, “This is the cup of the new covenant in me, as often as you drink of it do so in remembrance of me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s life, death, and resurrection until he comes again. Remember, all...ALL are welcome at the Lord’s Table.
(Share in the Bread and Cup together)
CLOSING SONG Shall We Gather at the River (chalice)
BENEDICTION - Sarah Smith