January 9, 2022

Worship Resources for 
the Center for Faith and Giving

First Sunday after Epiphany
Baptism of Jesus

Isaiah 43:1-7

Psalm 29

 Acts 8:14-17

Luke 3:15-17, 21-22

Call to Worship (from Isaiah 43)

One: Welcome to this time of worship, where we hear Good News!

Many:  We claim this truth:  
            God has called us by name.  We belong to God!

One: Nothing will overwhelm us, for God is the Holy One.
Many: So the song of the angels is for us:  “do not be afraid!”

One: God gives us God’s own name, and creates us to give God GLORY!

Many:  Remembering our baptism, we know we are redeemed.

One: We are named and claimed!
Many: Thanks be to God! 

Opening Prayer 

Holy God, even as we step into a new year, this 2022, we find it hard to “fear not”.  We’ve been challenged by _____________ (name specific challenges, such as COVID, weather, storm, isolation …).  
We’re eager to draw close to you.
We’re eager to be filled with expectation.
We’re eager to experience your Spirit descending into our lives.
So claim us in this hour.  
Call us to rejoice in you, in Jesus, the Christ, and in your Holy Spirit, AMEN 

Moment for Stewardship  

Some of you may not be baptized yet, but for those who have been baptized, do you remember your baptism?  

I was baptized ______________ (describe where and when you were baptized, perhaps with 1 sentence of what that meant to you then).

Usually when we baptize someone, we use their whole name, making sure to identify this specific person is voluntarily making a public affirmation of his/her faith.  From that moment on, that person is one who can be called by God’s name!

Just as there are expectations from your family of how to live up to your family name, we have expectations of how each of us, and all of us, will live up to being claimed as God’s own beloved daughters and sons.  One of those expectations is that we will lovingly share our time, talents and treasure in the life of the Church.

Today, I want to encourage each one of us to claim what a privilege it is to be baptized into Christ Jesus.  As privileged people, we respond with our offering.  Let the gifts you offer today, and throughout this new year, be gifts of gratitude for the privilege of being named “disciples of Jesus Christ!”

Prayer of Thanksgiving

Source of all being,
Hear our thanks as we offer ourselves 
     and these symbols of our daily living to you.
May your Spirit pour into us, as it came into Jesus,
     for we truly want to be claimed by you as we follow him.
Help us find ways to live the Good News of your love for one and for all,
Help us use these gifts and our time and talents
     in service with Jesus, your Beloved Son, Amen.

Invitation to Communion

(If you have someone who could sing this as a solo, use CH #245, Like the Murmur of the Dove’s Song as part of the communion service)

As we come to this Table, we’re reminded of the Holy Spirit at work in our midst.  Tho’ we cannot see, touch or hear the Spirit, we see the action of the Spirit in our congregation’s life.  Here, we find common language, and share a common meal.  Here our divisions take a back seat, for Jesus Christ invites each of us to take a place at this table.  

All are welcome.  
“All” means those who are fourth generation here, 
       and those here for the first time.
“All” means those who look like me, 
        and those who are different in ____________ 
(name some categories: skin color, age, language, abilities).
“All” means those who speak with God ten times a day, 
        and those still trying to figure how to be open to the Divine.

For each, and for all, we lift our voice, crying out:

“With the healing of division, with the ceaseless voice of prayer,
with the power to love and witness, with the peace beyond compare:
come, Holy Spirit, come”