February 24, 2013

Liturgical Resources from The Jubilee Fund
For Sunday February 24, 2013
Year C, Second Sunday in Lent 

Second Sunday in Lent :: Purple :: Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18  :: Psalm 27 :: Philippians 3:17-4:1  :: Luke 13:31-35
Call to Worship (Responsive)  
Adapted from Psalm 27
L: The LORD is my light and my salvation;
P: Whom shall I fear?
L: The LORD is the stronghold of my life;
P: Of whom shall I be afraid?
L: Hear, O LORD, when I cry aloud;
P: Be gracious to me and answer me.
L: Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage;
P: We will wait for the LORD!
We come into your sanctuary, O God, seeking to be imitators of Christ.  We come into your sanctuary, O God, hoping for healing and wholeness, and weeping for your people.  We come into your sanctuary, O God, longing to be able to live as citizens of Heaven, but knowing we are subject to earth.  We come into your sanctuary, O God, crying aloud our petitions, and praying for your gracious answer.  Draw us nearer to your presence, O God, for we come into YOUR sanctuary.
Stewardship Moment for Week of Compassion:
When Abraham was still known as Abram, he cried out to God in his despair, that he had no heir or offspring other than a slave in his house.  God brought Abram outside and told him “Look toward heaven and count the stars if you are able . . . so shall your descendants be.”  When a human saw hopelessness and nothing, God saw abundance fueled by love.  Today we bring our gifts for the Week of Compassion, our disaster and recovery ministry.  Two weeks ago, when the Pastor of First Christian Church in Hattiesburg, Mississippi found himself in the rubble of a parsonage affected by a tornado, you were there.  When all seemed lost, and the Pastor wondered even how to get through the night, Week of Compassion was already on the line, looking for ways to respond.  Because you support  Week of Compassion, we have been there, are there and will be there.  We will bring our tithes and our special offerings for Week of Compassion which make these ministries possible.
Offertory Prayer:
Help us, O God, to see the abundance with which you have blessed us.  Even when the situation seems hopeless, you are ready to respond.  Let us never forget.  Likewise, O God, as we bring these gifts before you, increase our awareness of your multiplying power.  Use these gifts to increase your reign.  Increase our willingness to share in abundant gratitude.  We offer these gifts and our prayers in the Name of Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Communion Meditation:
The story of Abram begins with the promise of descendants which number with the stars, and ends with what we commonly refer to as the “First Covenant.”  This was the promise which was fulfilled in the promised land.  The Covenant was made by God, marked at an altar, and set with a ritual practice.  Today we come to this table, this “altar” to remember the New Covenant: Made by God and marked and remembered at an altar, and set by our rituals and practices.
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