Liturgy to go with the Narrative Lectionary readings for September 14.
Call to Worship
One: Keep me safe, O God, for I have come to you for refuge.
Many: I said to God, “You are my Benefactor! Every good thing I have comes from you.”
One: God, you alone are my inheritance, my cup of blessing. You guard all that is mine.
Many: I will bless the Holy One who guides me; even at night my heart instructs me.
One: I know God is always with me. I will not be shaken, for God is right beside me.
Many: No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice. My body rests in safety.
One: You will show me the way of life,
Many: Granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.
(from Psalm 16)
Reconciliation/Assurance of Pardon
One: How often, Holy One, have we made promises to one another and to you and not kept them? Give us selfless and giving spirits, to share what we have—the world’s goods, our time, our skills and talents, ourselves—with our sisters and brothers, both far away and in our own homes. Forgive us our selfishness and narrow-mindedness and grant us grace to be open-hearted and open-handed. In the name of Christ, you are forgiven!
Many: In the name of Christ, you are forgiven!
One: God is with you!
Many: And also with you!
One: God the Creator has made all things good!
Many: Thanks and praise to the Creator!
One: Holy One, from a great void your creative powers formed the cosmos, from the largest stars to the smallest creatures; and you declared all of them good. Yet we humans, placed just below you, forgot this and have put all creation under our heel, declaring ourselves to be in charge of creation. You sent your prophets to point out the errors of our ways, but we did not listen. Your beloved child, Jesus the Christ, came to us to show us a new way of life, of living, of love—and we still turned away. Speak to us again in these gifts of creation, of grain from the hills, and the fruit of the vine, that we may remember your love for all creation.
On the night before Jesus gave up his life for us, he gathered with his closest friends and shared one last meal with them. At that meal, he took the bread, blessed it after the manner of his people, broke it, and shared it with his friends, saying:
Many: This is my body, opened for you.
One: When the meal was over, Jesus took the cup, and blessed it after the manner of his people, and passed it to his friends, saying:
Many: This is my love, poured out freely for you and for all nations.
One: And when we eat this bread and drink from this cup
Many: We remember Jesus’ promise and the mystery of our faith: Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again! Go and tell.
One: Spirit of the living God, pour out your grace and your presence on these gifts of grain and grape. Make them be for us whatever we need them to be, that we may be reminded of your gracious love for us, now and always. Amen.
One: God is with us!
Many: God is with us always!
One: Go in peace and in the knowledge of God’s loving presence with you, now and always. Amen.