a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

Benediction: see greater things

Beloved, we have heard and trusted in
the good news of Jesus Christ.
Go now into the world to do and see still greater things,
to open heaven upon earth
and bear witness to eternal life today;
in the name of the Father,
and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Covenant Presbyterian Church, West Des Moines, IA

POP: shines forth

We rejoice in you, O God,
all the earth rejoices and sings glory to your name;
we sing praise and glory to you, O God.
As Christ’s beauty shines forth,
we praise your great salvation
and celebrate the merciful love that reconciles us to you.

As the new year dawns around us,
we pray for the welfare of the earth:
for the healing of the climate;
for the preservation of the beauty and balance of nature;
for the lives of the creatures whose very being sings your praises.

As Christ calls us into renewed discipleship,
we pray for the needs of your people everywhere:
for the forgiveness and redemption of the sins that bind and wound us;
for the deliverance of those who face chaos, despair, and sorry;
for the comfort and courage of all who mourn or face death.
We pray for the lives of the nations:
keep watch, Sovereign,
and teach us to work for justice and lasting peace.

We bless you, O God,
and we join all peoples in praising you,
in the name of Jesus our Savior, our Lord. Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Covenant Presbyterian Church, West Des Moines, IA

Dedication: shine with your light

Lord Jesus, you are the Messiah, the savior of the world.
We dedicate these earthly things to your use,
that they and all the world might shine with your light.
We celebrate the gift of life abundant,
in your holy name. Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Covenant Presbyterian Church, West Des Moines, IA

Illumination: come and see

Eternal God, we are listening for your gracious Word,
made flesh for us in Jesus Christ.
Call us to come and see where he leads,
and teach us to believe in his name.
Help us to do as he tells us
so our lives might be signs of his glory.
We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Covenant Presbyterian Church, West Des Moines, IA

CTW: Arise and Shine

Arise and awaken, children of God!

For our light has come, and the glory of the Holy One shines out!

Lift up your eyes! Look around you!

The people gather together – the people of all nations come together to worship God

You shall see and shall shine with God’s light

Let us rejoice and praise God, whose love shines forth into the world. Amen. 

Submitted by Rev. Lucus Levy Keppel, Trinity Presbyterian Church in Bixby, Okla.

Illumination: help us hear

God our Parent,
your voice claims us as your people
and calls us into new relationships
with ourselves and others.
By your Holy Spirit, help us hear your voice speaking to us
through these words of scripture,
and prepare us for your service,
in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Echo Hill Presbyterian Church, IA

POP: God’s Anointed

People of God, Jesus comes to bring God’s mercy to all people.
Therefore we are bold to sing our prayers
to the one whose reign is justice, peace, and joy:

All Hail to God’s Anointed v. 1

We pray for those who are captive to violence, oppression, and sin.
We pray for all who are hungry, sick, sorrowing, or afraid.

All Hail to God’s Anointed v. 2

We pray for everyone who longs for new beginnings.
We pray for those who celebrate and rejoice.
We pray for all who travel to be with families,
and we pray for those who celebrate the birth of the Savior alone.
We pray for the gift of peace, in our hearts and in our world.

All Hail to God’s Anointed v. 3

We pray for those in positions of power,
for those who have more wealth and power than they realize,
and for those whom we are called to serve.

All Hail to God’s Anointed v. 4

Let your kingdom come in this world, O God,
and let our hearts welcome the birth of the Holy Child,
who teaches us to pray as we say together:

The Lord’s Prayer

 

Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams, Echo Hill Presbyterian Church, IA

CTW: what are you looking for?

What are you looking for?
A better job, a bigger house, a smaller car, my cell phone.
What are you looking for?
A vacation spot, a quiet moment, my coffee mug.
What are you looking for?
Peace, wholeness, love, acceptance…
What are you looking for?
You, Jesus, we are looking for you, but we are too busy to realize it.
Let us worship the One in whom all things are possible.

Submitted by  Rev. Shannon Meacham, Ashland Presbyterian Church, Cockeysville MD

Epiphany Communion: Still a Light Shines

Still a light shines, and the darkness does not overcome it.
At this table, Christ is revealed in the ordinariness of life—
as once he was revealed in a child playing in his neighborhood,
a child trusting his parents to keep him safe,
now he is revealed in a meal shared among the family of God,
simple bread and wine, the stuff of life handed down from generation to generation.
It is here, at Christ’s table, where brokenness leads to wholeness.
It is here, at Christ’s table, where cracks allow light to shine forth.
It is here, at Christ’s table, where we see him most clearly,
and where we are given eyes to see him at every table.
This is not a feast for Presbyterians, this table does not belong to the church—
this is the joyful feast of the people of God,
and it is Christ himself who invites you, all of you,
to come, eat, drink, and see.

Let us pray.

Blessed are you, O Lord our God, ruler of the universe,
for your star shines still in the night sky,
guiding your people in paths of love and justice.
In the beginning, you brought light into darkness,
and created a people to reflect your glory.
When we have lost our way or turned away,
you shone the light all the brighter,
calling us through the words of prophets
and even in the life of your Son,
who was born as we are born, breathed and ate and walked and lived as we do,
who not only revealed your way
but is the way.
And even now, your Spirit burns like flame
in our hearts
in the community
in your word
at this table.
As we come, drawn to the warmth and wonder,
we pray for your light to shine gently on those wounded places of our hearts,
for we carry burdens of shame, of hurt, of grief, of fear.
We carry a world crying out, longing for relief.
We see violence and hatred, apathy and disgust, power misused and people treated as disposable.
Give us courage to stand and see, to refuse to be consoled,
until your creation is healed by the hot light of your justice.
When we shade our eyes against the brightness of your way,
help us see what you see.
When we assume the end of the story,
remind us that you, not we, are the author.
When we are tempted to settle into a comfortable routine
of selfishness, hopelessness, or convenience,
awaken us to your new thing,
and make us partners in your creating.
As we break bread together,
may our hearts be broken with yours.
As we who are many are gathered like grain into one body,
may your Spirit knit us together.
As we bring the gifts we have to offer—though they are not gifts fit for a king—
may our hearts be open to receive your gift once again this day,
and may your church be strengthened to be a gift to your world.
As we share the same meal you, Lord, have shared
with disciples, with enemies, with the church through the ages,
may our eyes be opened and may we recognize you.
We pray these and all things in the name of Jesus Emmanuel, God with Us, who taught us to pray together…

~~~after all have been served~~~

We give you thanks, O Lord,
for once again you have filled us with good things—
not just bread and wine, but your very self.
Now may this glimpse of your kingdom sustain us,
and give us eyes to see you at work in every place,
and strength to be your body in the world.
As you have blessed the bread and broken it,
you have blessed us and let light shine through the cracks.
Make us your people, again and again,
light for the world.
In Jesus name. Amen.

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL

CTW: guided by the star

Leader: Guided by the Star we come
People: To pay homage to the Shepherd of Israel
Leader: Guided by the Star we come
People: To kneel before to the Light of the world.
Leader: Guided by the star we come
People: And we are overwhelmed with joy
Leader: Guided by the star we come to Worship
People: We come to celebrate the Christ, our Savior.
 
Submitted by Pastor Andrew Black, United Methodist Church Arnold-Merna-Anslemo, NE