For Worship on June 26, 2022
This Sunday the Bradenton/Sarasota congregation is having a special service in the Fellowship Hall with the theme, “Words for Worship in a Time of War.” It is a service that contains scriptures, readings, songs, and prayers. The service was put together by John L. Bell, a Scottish liturgical writer and composer who has been recognized by the Community of Christ for his work in the area of peace. It is recommended by the World Church, and we had the opportunity to use the service and its contents copyright free before June 30th, so we jumped at the chance.
The world is currently focusing a lot of attention on the war taking place in Ukraine, so this service is timely, but it will also be used to point out and remind us that there are many wars that have been and still are taking place in many countries near and far.
The songs being used in the service will not be familiar to most in attendance. To help prepare for the service, please familiarize yourself with the following hymns. The first one is CCS 225, Ososo (“Come Now, O Prince of Peace”) It is sung in many languages which you will hear. It is sung twice in English and the congregation will join in on those verses (If you know the other languages, feel free to sing along). This was filmed in the garden at the Temple in Independence, MO.
The second hymn is the Ukrainian Kyrie. This will be sung 2/3rds of the way through the first prayer. A portion of the prayer will be read, then we will sing this three times: first Kyrie eleison (God have mercy), then Christie eleison (Christ have mercy), then repeat Kyrie eleison (God have mercy).
There will be other songs used, but for one, the first verse will be a solo to teach the melody, and the closing hymn will be new lyrics set to a familiar hymn tune.
Nanette Dizney and I (Sherry Lindgren) hope that the service we bring you Sunday will be thought provoking, minister to your spirit and bring a sense of hope, compassion, and peace to your soul.
For Worship on June 19, 2022
The theme for this Sunday is ”Discern Holy Presence.” Carolyn Deering is presiding, and Jim Deering is speaking. They are using the theme, but Carolyn will be honoring Fathers as well and Jim is focusing his message on Psalm 46:10 rather than scripture suggested by the World Church resources. Please use the following to spiritually prepare to receive the ministry provided on Sunday
Scripture – Psalm 46:10
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”
This following short story is paraphrased from a page from a 2004 Daily Bread. Original is by Charlotte Jones of Sherman Oaks, California.
“A Clear Lens”
“God is our refuge and strength, a present help in trouble… Be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:1, 10
It was amazing to me how much better I could see. I had cleaned the lenses of my glasses with a special cleaning liquid and wiped them with a special cloth. Things looked sharper, only because the cloudy lenses were cleaned. It occurred to me how sometimes our spiritual sight gets clouded with “things” like the rush of time and all the potential choices based on diverse factors that confuse and influence us. Sometimes our spiritual lenses need cleaning so we can see more clearly the choices God would have us make.
Spending some time apart to meet with God allows His spirit to touch us so that we can develop clearer vision. Things come into focus and choices become clearer with God in the equation. The frantic pace of daily living is tempered. A peace comes bringing the blessed assurance that God’s [presence] is always a ready resource.
Prayer Thought: Thank you, God, for the love you express for us by keeping your promise to be with us always in our need.
To close out this preparation, play close attention to the words of Amy Grant’s interpretation of this scripture in our every-day modern lives.
For Worship June 12, 2022 — “Guide Us Into Truth” Trinity Sunday
Trinity Sunday is observed the Sunday following Pentecost. Christian tradition celebrates the doctrine of the Trinity, God experienced in three persons. God is Creator (traditionally identified as the Father), Jesus Christ is the Redeemer (the son), and the Holy Spirit is the Comforter or Sustainer. In other words, God is one and three.
Meditate on one of our favorite hymns, sung and interpreted by Audrey Assad.
From Community of Christ Basic Beliefs: “We believe in one living God who meets us in the testimony of Israel, is revealed in Jesus Christ, and moves through all creation as the Holy Spirit. We affirm the Trinity—God who is a community of three persons.” (www.CofChrist.org/basic-beliefs).
One of the prayers for peace offered in the Worship Resources for this week not only speaks to the Trinity concept but also continues the thoughts that Andrea Cooper presented to us this past Communion/Pentecost Sunday about diversity, unity, expectation, and hope. It is a great way to close out our preparation for this week:
How majestic are all your names, used around the world, as people call upon you! Just as grasping at your greatness leads us beyond simple comprehension, so too does grasping at peace.
What are the ways people are struggling in the world today? What are the actions we can offer that would facilitate peace within those struggles? In what ways can we tangibly move towards peace?
Over and over in Scripture, you call us to be faithful to your many forms, to dig deep into a sense of understanding you. At the same time, you send us to all nations to act and be peace amongst the people who need it most.
Call us today to three acts of peace Lord, just as you are the Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer. Call us to walk with you as creators of peace in the broken places. Call us to point others toward you as Redeemer of a world in search of peace. Call us to generate and sustain real change to broken systems that suppress peace.
We pray for blessing in all its many forms,
—Tiffany and Caleb Brian
For Worship June 5, 2022 — Pentecost Sunday
On Sunday, June 5, there will be several things to contemplate, prepare for and pray about. Sunday is Communion Sunday, but it is also the final Sunday of the Easter season that culminates in Pentecost Sunday.
Preparation for communion should be taken seriously but also joyfully anticipated and prepared for with gratitude and thanks. The lyrics to the first verse of Hymn 532 from Community of Christ Sings aid us in setting the mood for the upcoming sacrament:
We meet as friends at table, to listen, and be heard,
united by the Spirit, attentive to the Word.
Through prayer and conversation, we tune our varied views to Christ,
whose love has made us the bearers of good news.
To prepare our hearts and minds to receive the message of the day, read the scripture from the book of Acts and listen to the music of Patrick Mayberry, which perfectly sets the tone and the mood for the service.
Holy Spirit Come – Patrick Mayberry
For Worship May 29, 2022 — “Receive Blessing”
Nanette Dizney presiding, Al Mount bringing the message, based on the scripture Luke 24:44-53
This Sunday’s scripture is full joy, and hope and the promise of God’s blessing. As you prayerfully prepare for this Sunday’s service, contemplate the scripture, its promises, and its hopes.
As you listen to this week’s upbeat song, bask in the feeling of joy and hope that it brings, called “God’s Got a Blessing (With My Name on It)” as sung by Norman Hutchins.
For Worship May 22, 2022 — “Prepare a Sanctuary”
Scripture: John 14:23-29
23 Jesus answered him, “Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Whoever does not love me does not keep my words, and the word that you hear is not mine but is from the Father who sent me.
25 “I have said these things to you while I am still with you. 26 But the Advocate,[a] the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. 28 You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I am coming to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I. 29 And now I have told you this before it occurs, so that when it does occur you may believe.
This scripture is full of promises of hope and comfort and the idea that we need never feel alone. As you prayerfully prepare for this Sunday’s service, contemplate the scripture, its promises, and its hopes.
Meditate upon the hymn “Abide With Me” as sung by Audrey Assad.
Dare to Prepare — For Worship May 15, 2022
Jesus said in Mark 12:30-31, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
Sunday, May 15th, our worship theme is “Love One Another – Can We Do It?” The service will be in the fellowship hall and will include assembling “Manna Bags” to give out to the homeless population of Sarasota and Bradenton.
The bags, which are nylon, waterproof, backpack style, will contain approximately 17 items most needed by the homeless. The final cost of the bags is a little over $9.00/bag and we are fund raising to recoup some of the cost so we can do this again as needed. If you’d like to donate to the Manna Bag project, please give Dick Kramer a check and write Manna Bags on the memo line, or write a designated amount on your envelope during your usual offering.
Please prayerfully consider the theme and the scripture above and prepare to worship and serve this Sunday.
The following video sets the mood. We want this Sunday to be worshipful and fun and bring us closer to each other and Him. (For maximum enjoyment, be sure to watch all the way to the end).
The Newsboys — Love One Another