May 29th The Christ Hymn

Philippians 2:1-13

Luke 6:43-45

Call to Worship:

Today we praise Christ who emptied himself for us

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow

Today we gather to be consoled by God

Praise God all creatures here below

God will come and make our joy complete

Come, let us praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost!

Invitation to Confession: Let all who long to be of one mind with Christ, come to confess

Prayer of Confession: Jesus, we confess that we are so distracted by your Godliness, that we forget that often miss you–kneeling beside us. And that when we pray, you pray with us. Amen.

Assurance and Pardon: Christ who washed our feet, remind us again that you came to save us, so we can always know the truth: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God, be at work in us. Stoop to be beside us, teaching us how to serve–and loving us into the kingdom work, we pray. Amen.

Hymns: When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, Christ Jesus Lay in Death’s Strong Hands, Come Ye Faithful Raise the Strain, The Strife is O’er, Of the Father’s Love Begotten, Jesus the Very Thought of Thee, Come Down O Love Divine, Love Divine All Loves Excelling, My Hope Is Built on Nothing Less, O Love that Wilt Not Let Me Go, There’s a Sweet Sweet Spirit

Children: Talk about how parents and older stoop to talk to babies, and that’s how Jesus emptied himself, knelt, became human to talk to us

May 22nd Partnerships in the Gospel

Praying the Gospel

Philippians 1:1-18a

Luke 9:46-48

Call to Worship

God you call every single person here

We are called into community with one another

Help us to pray for one another

Let us thank God for one another

Come let us worship God

Come, let us be called into community together

Call to Confession: God is here, to listen, always. Come let us confess ourselves to God.

Prayer of Confession: God we confess that sometimes we feel like we are in competition with fellow Christians, or that our work is not good enough, or that we do not know how to be evangelists for your faith. In truth, we do not often agree with people who call themselves Christians, and we do not know what to do with that. We confess, that we do not really believe that all good works will somehow be brought into fruition in Christ. Help us: to keep at it, to have courage, to take joy in the work and to keep teaching and praying. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: God’s Love is from everlasting to everlasting. Let us live into the assurance of the truth: In Jesus Christ you are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: May we go into the world thanking God every time we think of one another, and knowing that the good works that have begun here will be brought into completion by Jesus Christ. Amen.

Hymns: Every Time I Feel the Spirit, I Love the Lord Who Heard My Cry, Lord I Wanna Be A Christian In My Heart, O God Our Faithful God, If Thou But Trust in God to Guide Me, Just As I Am Without One Plea

With Children: How do you know prayers are answered? Talk through about what praying for another person is, and what to do when prayers are answered and when they aren’t. Talk about God’s perspective versus the human perspective.

May 15th Paul’s Sermon at Athens

Acts 17:16-31

John 1:16-18

Call to Worship

Jesus call us to you

Even when we do not know your name, you call us

Fill us with the joy of your good news!

Come let us worship our God!

Call to Confession: Come let us confess ourselves to the God who created us and loves us.

Confession: God sometimes we do not know how to teach about you or what to pray for; whisper in our ear the truth that, you are already at work, planting seeds. Remind us that it is your job convert people, ours is to love them and to share the good news. Tell us, as many times as we need to hear it, that–you are present already! The job is not as big as we are afraid. Forgive us, embolden us, love us, help us to hold onto things lightly enough to have fun with the gospel and tight enough to know that you love us no matter what. We pray this your son Jesus Christ’s most Holy Name. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: God knows us and is for us, therefore, we can be assured in the good news that we can tell one another here and now: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God help us to find you, even when your face seems invisible. Be with us we pray. Amen.

Hymns: In Christ There is No East or West, O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing, Come Great God of All the Ages, At the Name of Jesus, Immortal Invisible God Only Wise

With Children: Talk about finding something that was right in front of your nose. Talk about how seeds grow. Talk about how God works invisibly but is already at work, and we don’t bring God to people but instead help people recognize how God is already at work.

May 8th Paul and Silas

Acts 16:16-34

Luke 6:18-19, 22, 23

Consider John 3:16-17

Call to Worship

Call to Confession

Jesus you call us to life

You came into the world to tell us the truth

You free the prisoner and bring justice

Come let praise our God of Love!

Call to Confession: Jesus wants to set us free, let us confess ourselves to God

Confession: Jesus, we confess that we are too often stuck, like the slave girl and the prison guards. Send us the earthquake we need to shake loose and find the guides and friends and colleagues in our lives so that we do the work we are called to do. Help us to teach and pray the gospel Remind us it is never too late. Help us to learn that your freedom is different from any other freedom we pray. Amen

Assurance of Pardon: Jesus frees you from all sin, to be beloved, so go and be beloved, knowing the truth: In Jesus Christ you are Forgiven

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Jesus, move us every closer to you as we go about our lives, so that we can see and know you better. Guide us with teachers and prayer we pray. Amen.

Hymns: Live Into Hope, The Day of Resurrection, Thine is Glory, When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, Because You Live O Christ,

With Children: Talk about the different ways to be imprisoned, enslaved, captured. Everyone thought Paul and Silas were the ones captured, but in some ways they were the most free. How was that?

This was a song I loved to bounce on the couch to when I was little (yes I am that young) Amy Grant: Angels Watching Over Me: You have to go to Youtube to watch it

May 1st Paul Conversion

Teaching the Good News and Praying the Gospel

Acts 9:1-19a

Matthew 6:24

Call to Worship

God we are called to your gospel

To preach and pray in unusual ways

Jesus help us to give others the eyes to see,

Invitation to Confess: Come let us confess ourselves to the Risen Christ.

Call to Worship: Jesus, we confess that we don’t always do baptism right. We push people into church, or we wait too long to invite them. We have trouble figuring it all out. Forgive us. Help us to know when to teach and when to pray. Remove the scales from our eyes. Help us to know the good news of the gospel, and how to share it we pray. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: Jesus is here, loving us even now. So let us proclaim the good news. In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God, guide us where we need to go, help us to grow in faith and trust in the Lord, whether we are feeling more like Ananias or Paul at the moment, walk with us we pray. Amen.

Hymns: Here I am Lord, Create in Me a Clean Heart, Amazing Grace, Lift High the Cross,

With Children: Changing Names–talk about how people in the Bible change names when they feel like different people and how this makes sense because we call different people by different names: mother/father, teacher, boss, son/daughter, brother/sister, If it’s appropriate talk about why people might change their names in your congregation (getting married, changing genders) and how that is like Paul/Saul, Jacob/Israel, Naomi/Mara, Abram/Abraham

April 10th Palm/Passion Sunday: Lament & Hope

The Crucified Messiah: Lament & Hope

Sermon Ideas, Pile of Good Things

Psalm 24

John 12:12-27

Call to Worship

The earth is God’s, and all that is in it; the world and all those who live in it!

God has founded it on the seas and established the world on the rivers.

Let us lift our heads, and seek God, to the gates, so that the King of glory may come in!

Come, we know who the King of Glory is! Let us worship Jesus!

Call to Confession: God, we all have things to confess, Hosanna, save us as we confess together.

Confession: God, we confess that we are always crying Hosanna, Save us! Help us! We confess that our best selves are our Palm Sunday selves knowing we need help and willing to do the work. Our worse selves are our Passion Sunday mob selves angry that things are not fixed and lashing out from our own internal pain. Forgive us, remind us that we no longer have to choose to be a Palm Sunday or Passion Sunday People—you have transformed us into a resurrection people. Help us to hang onto that we pray. Amen. 

Assurance of Pardon: Christ has already saved us, so we can proclaim the good news again and again: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God bless us as we go, remembering that you love us, every single day. On our best days, on our worst days, and every day in between. Help us to hold fast to that love we pray. Amen. 

Children: God does not keep score. Talk about forgiveness and how God does not judge like humans or keep grudges like humans. God’s grace washes it all away. Discuss how this is a really hard concept for humans, because we are really good at judging and holding grudges, but Jesus promises that is not how it works for God. 

Hymns: Great is Thy Faithfulness, Be Thou My Vision, All Glory Laud and Honor, Hosanna Loud Hosanna, O Love How Deep How Broad How High

Please support my writing: Katy’s Doctorate in Ministry in Creative Writing at Pittsburgh Seminary. 

For Word versions of the Liturgy email me at Katyandtheword at gmail

From Lament to Hope Full Resources

April 3rd Jesus Condemned: Lament for sin

Jesus Condemned: Lament for sin

John 19:1-16a

Psalm 146

Call to Worship

Our hope is the Lord our God

God made heaven and the earth, the sea and all that is in them

God keeps faith forever

Come let us praise the Lord!

Call to Confession: Come all you who are heavy burdened, and Jesus will give you rest. Come let us confess ourselves.

Confession: God we confess that we are frightened by the angry mobs of people, by death cults, by those who threaten violence when they lose their privilege. We confess it is frightening because we are afraid that we will will be caught up either in the mob, or be caught up and trampled by it. Avoiding it did not stop the violence, as your disciples can testify. Forgive us, God, for we do not know what we are doing, still. Teach us stop the crime of “crucify” and transform them into the grace and freedom that Pilate tries to enact. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen. 

Assurance of Pardon: God loves us, today, tomorrow and forever, nothing can separate us from that love. Thus we can tell one another the truth in that love: In Jesus Christ we are Forgiven. Amen. 

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God teach us true freedom, not that of mobs, but the freedom that grace provides. Let us walk away in grace we pray. Amen. 

Children: Talk about 2nd Thoughts, why Pilate was having them, why it’s hard to have 2nd thoughts in a crowd/group/mob. Talk about why parents always say “if everyone jumped off a cliff would you” (I would say this very much as an inside joke that the kids all know). Talk about bravery, and the power of grace, and how true freedom means being able to have a difference of opinion and how Jesus wants us to be able to be free to love and protect one another first and foremost. 

Hymns: Were You There, He Never Said a Mumblin’ Word, When I survey the Wondrous Cross, Amazing Grace, Jesu Lover of My Soul

Please support my writing: Katy’s Doctorate in Ministry in Creative Writing at Pittsburgh Seminary. 

For Word versions of the Liturgy email me at Katyandtheword at gmail

From Lament to Hope Full Resources

March 27th Jesus and Pilate: Hope of the Kin(g)dom

Jesus and Pilate 

John 18:28-40

Psalm 145:10-13

Call to Worship:

God is faithful in all of their words, and gracious in all of their deeds

My mouth will speak the praise of God

Come let us praise the Trinity

Let all flesh bless God’s holy name forever and ever

Call to Confession: You send the Holy Spirit to encourage us and inspire us to be brave in our confession, so let us confess ourselves to you God.

Prayer of Confession: God we confess that we too often confuse earthly power with heavenly power. We think power is about wealth and politics and stuff, when really you show again and again that it grace and love and mercy given in abundance. Continue to teach us by the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Assurance of Pardon: God loves us and forgives us, hear the good news: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Jesus Christ you are the truth, and the life and the hope everlasting. Let us hold onto that as we go about the world we pray. Amen.

Children: Talk about “The Lord’s Prayer’ “Thy Kin(g)dom Come” and the King and Kingdom that Jesus and PIlate are talking about with Pilate, why is Pilate so Confused? What are we praying for when we are praying “Thy Kin(g)dom Come?”

Hymns: Lead On O King Eternal, Lord Dismiss Us With Thy Blessing, Holy Holy Holy Lord God Almighty, Live Into Hope, Glory Be to the Father, Our Father Lord of Heaven and Earth, And He Never Said a Mumblin’ Word

Please support my writing: Katy’s Doctorate in Ministry in Creative Writing at Pittsburgh Seminary. 

For Word versions of the Liturgy email me at Katyandtheword at gmail

From Lament to Hope Full Resources

March 13 Jesus Washes Feet: Hope of Serving

Jesus Washes Feet: Hope of Serving

John 13:1-17

Psalm 51:7-12

Call to Worship

God we gather to serve

For you first served us, the one who taught the first will be last

Jesus we long to be near you

Come let us worship the alpha and omega

Call to Confession: God calls all those who are in relationship with God to come into God’s presence for confession, come let us confess ourselves to God and each other

Prayer of Confession: God, I confess that I am like Peter crying out create in me a clean heart God, clean my feet and my hands and my whole body! Because some days I understand all too well all of my imperfections, and they seem to scream at me, from my body and my personality and my accomplishments. Remind me God, that you sent Jesus to show us how to love and serve one another, no more, no less, and that your grace is infinite. Remind us, we pray in your most Holy name. Amen. 

Assurance of Pardon: God always restore us to the joy of salvation, hear the good news of the gospel: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven.

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: God we come to you fully confessing ourselves and ready to be washed clean. Let us go forth rejoicing and ready to serve our God. Amen

Children: Discuss Baptism and how Confession is a renewal of Baptism

Hymns: Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing, Create in Me a Clean Heart, Jesu Jesu Fill Us with Your Love, I’m Gonna Live So God Can Use Me

Please support my writing: Katy’s Doctorate in Ministry in Creative Writing at Pittsburgh Seminary.

For Word versions of the Liturgy email me at Katyandtheword at gmail

From Lament to Hope Full Resources

March 6th Jesus Raises Lazarus. Jesus Wept, The Lament

March 6

Jesus Raises Lazarus, Jesus Wept: the Lament

John 11:1-44

Psalm 104:27-30

Call to Worship

Jesus we are wracked by tears

Sit with us in our weeping

Renew us, we pray

God, help us to gather in your name.

Call to Confession: God calls us to confession, so that we can claim our full selves with God, come let us confess ourselves to God. 

Prayer of Confession: God, we confess that we are not a culture that grieves well. We would rather ignore our sadness, or feel angry. Sadness feel so lonely. We do not want to admit the loneliness of grief. Remind us that we are not alone in our lamenting, we pray. And sit with us, Jesus. We pray this in the name of the Christ who weeps. Amen. 

Assurance of Pardon: Christ loves us, Christ sits with us, Christ redeems us, Sit in confidence of the truth: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. 

Prayer of the Day/Dedication: Holy Spirit, come and dwell with use, for we admit that sometimes we are overwhelmed with emotions, and at those times we do not know what to do, or we take on too much, or we are unable to move. Remind us to breathe, and that you know us and love us, and that its ok to feel whatever we are feeling. Breathe us through whatever we are feeling we pray. Amen. 

With Children: “You are My I Love You” “Be is for Breathe,” Do a breath prayer as a an exercise for when you feel overwhelmed or scared or need a break. 

Hymns: Breathe on me Breath of God, I love the Lord Who Heard My Cry, There is a Balm in Gilead, O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go, O Jesus I Have Promised, Precious Lord, Take My Hand

Please support my writing: Katy’s Doctorate in Ministry in Creative Writing at Pittsburgh Seminary.

For Word versions of the Liturgy email me at Katyandtheword at gmail

From Lament to Hope Full Resources

Shannon A Thompson

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