The Celebration of the Gospel
July 2, 2017 —4th Sunday after Pentecost
In Christ all things hold together.
— Colossians 1.17
________We Gather as the Body of Christ______
PRELUDE America, The Beautiful … Samuel A. Ward, arr: Teresa Wilhelmi
[As we listen to the music we quiet our minds and bodies,
listen for our hearts’ deepest desires,
and become present to the Holy One who is lovingly present for us.]
* CALL TO WORSHIP
Leader: God of all the earth, we worship you.
All: God of all peoples, we thank you.
You create all people in your image, and you bless every land.
God of all peoples, we thank you.
You provide for us, and give us all to each other, for our mutual blessing.
God of all peoples, we thank you. Alleluia!
* SONG In Christ There Is no East or West … Blue hymnal # 548
___________ We Attend to the Word___________
THE WORD IN SONG Carol Storrs
God of all Creation, you love us as your children. You ask us to love one another as siblings. We listen for your Word, that we may receive and give your love as the Spirit enables us, in the name and the company of Christ. Amen.
GOSPEL Matthew 10.40-42
[As Jesus sends out his disciples he reminds them of God’s presence in them, and of God’s presence in the “little ones”, the poor, the rejected, the “other.” ]
Jesus said: “Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple—truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.”
OLD TESTAMENT Genesis 12.1-7
[God calls Abram (soon to become Abraham) from his native land to the land of Canaan. God promises Abram will have land—that land, currently inhabited by native people— and many descendants, and that they will be a blessing to all on earth.]
Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your parents’ house to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” So Abram went, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran.
Abram took his wife Sarai and his brother’s son Lot, and all the possessions that they had gathered, and the persons whom they had acquired in Haran; and they set forth to go to the land of Canaan. When they had come to the land of Canaan, Abram passed through the land to the place at Shechem, to the oak of Moreh. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. Then the Lord appeared to Abram, and said, “To your offspring I will give this land.” So he built there an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him.
SERMON “God and Country” — they’re not the same
SONG This Is My Song … Blue hymnal # 437 vv. 1-2
THE PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
[Anyone who wishes may share a prayer concern at the microphone.]
SHARING THE PEACE OF CHRIST
___________We Share at Christ’s Table_________
OFFERING OUR GIFTS Open My Eyes … Tune: SCOTT, arr: Bob Burroughs
* COMMUNION SONG This Is My Song … Blue hymnal # 437 verse 3
THE GREAT THANKSGIVING Black hymnal # 2257
We praise you and thank you, God of all Creation.
You create the earth, one living being, without nations or boundaries.
You create your people, one living family.
This feast comes from the earth, the whole earth giving praise.
This gathering is your people, without division or privilege.
You invite us all, from every people and nation, to gather at your one table.
So with all Creation, with one voice, we praise you and thank you.
Blessed are all who come in your name, and blessed is Jesus, your Christ.
He loved and taught, he healed and fed the people,
without distinction: Jew and gentile, slave and free.
He established a new nation: the Kingdom of Grace, the Nation of God,
made not by laws or armies but by love.
The empire of his love threatened the powers of this world;
therefore he was crucified. But you raised him from the dead.
He lives among us, inviting us to this table, establishing again your Realm of Love.
[The Blessing and Covenant…]
Jesus said, “Do this in remembrance of me.”
As often as we break this bread and share this cup
we remember his death and resurrection until he comes again.
Remembering these, your mighty acts in Jesus Christ,
we offer ourselves in praise and thanksgiving
as a living and holy sacrifice, in union with Christ’s offering for us,
as we proclaim the mystery of our faith:
[For food for the food pantry] Pour out your holy Spirit on these gifts of food,
that those who receive them may experience your love and grace.
[For the communion elements] Pour out your Holy Spirit on these gifts of bread and cup,
that they may be for us the body and blood of Christ.
Pour out your Holy Spirit on us,
that we may be for the world the Body of Christ,
citizens of a single kingdom, the Realm of your love:
one nation, under your grace, with liberty and justice for all.
THE PRAYER OF JESUS
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 trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.
SHARING THE HOLY MEAL [Everyone is welcome at the table of Christ’s self-giving love.
The bread is wheat-, soy- and dairy free. We dip the bread in the juice.]
PRAYER OF BLESSING
Gracious God, we thank you for this mystery in which you have given yourself to us. Send us into the world to share your abundant grace and to serve equally all peoples of every nation with your love, in the name of Christ. Amen.
______We Are Sent in Ministry to the World_____
THE LIFE OF THE CHURCH IN THE WORLD
* SONG They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love … Black hymnal #2223
* THE BLESSING AND SENDING FORTH
RESPONSE We stand and sing to our neighbors:
May the grace and peace of Christ be with you my friends.
Go and share the love of God, love that never ends.
POSTLUDE Postlude on “WEBB” … Jason D. Payne
[During the postlude there are people ready to pray with you at the candles in the corners.]