CALL TO WORSHIP
(Based on Psalm 24)
Who shall climb to the top of the Lord’s mountain?
Those who know that the Earth is the Lord’s. Everything in the Earth and all the people who dwell upon the Earth are the Lord’s.
And who shall stand in God’s holy place?
Those who do not bow to what is false will stand in God’s holy place and they will receive blessings from the God of their salvation.
Who is the God of Salvation?
The Lord, strong and mighty! Lift up your hearts, O gates an be lifted up, O ancient doors that the King of Glory may come in!
And who is the King of Glory?
The Lord of hosts, he is the King of Glory!
THE GREAT THANKSGIVING:
The Lord be with you.
And also with you.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them up to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
It is right to give our thanks and praise.
It is right, and good and joyful thing, to give thanks to you, Almighty God. You moved across the empty void and brought an explosion of life into being. It was by the power of your creative word that heaven and earth were formed. By the power of your will, reason and purpose were brought forth out of chaos and emptiness.
You formed each of us in your image. It was your breath that brought us to life. You set in each of us a burning spirit, yearning constantly for you.
Yet, our love failed.
We turned away.
Your love remained steadfast, however.
You delivered us from times of turmoil and made a covenant to be our sovereign God.
In the ancient days, you spoke your message through the mouths of prophets. Your voice is still speaking through those who would live prophetically. Today, in particular, we recall those who lived as saints amongst us but who have entered into your eternal rest. We remember the lives and witness of Deloris Robinson and of Jo Gooch, who lived and died as your disciples, sharing their faith with us through their words and deeds. Their witness has touched our lives and has revealed the depth of your love and grace. May we continue to see your presence revealed to us through others.
And so, with your people on earth all the company of heaven we praise your name and join their unending hymn:
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.
Holy are you, and blessed is your Son, Jesus Christ.
You set a light in the sky so that those who were watching from near or far might know that you had broken into this world. Your Spirit was with him, protecting him as he grew. Your Spirit was with him in the desert of temptation. And your Spirit anointed him to preach the Good News. Through his wisdom and authority, the poor are filled with blessings, the captives are set free, the blind are given sight, and the oppressed are liberated.
Jesus healed the sick, fed the hungry, and ate with sinners. No one was excluded from his grace and mercy.
By the baptism of his suffering, death, and resurrection you gave birth to your Church, delivered us from slavery to sin and death, and made with us a new covenant by water and the Spirit. When the Lord Jesus ascended, he promised to be with us always, in the power of your Word and Holy Spirit.
On the night in which he gave himself up for us, he took bread, gave thanks to you, broke the bread, gave it to his disciples, and said: “Take, eat; this is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”
When the supper was over, he took the cup, gave thanks to you, gave it to his disciples, and said: “Drink from this, all of you; this is my blood of the new covenant, poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
And so, in remembrance of these your mighty acts in Jesus Christ, we offer ourselves in praise and thanksgiving as a holy and living sacrifice in union with Christ’s offering for us, as we proclaim the mystery of faith.
Christ has died; Christ is risen; Christ will come again.
Pour out your Holy Spirit on us gathered here, and on these gifts of bread and vine. Make them be for us the body and blood of Christ, that we may be of the world the body of Christ, redeemed by his blood.
By your Spirit make us one with Christ, one with each other, and one in ministry to all the world, until Christ comes in final victory and we feast at his heavenly banquet. Through your Son Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit in your holy Church, all honor and glory is yours, almighty Father, now and for ever. Amen.