The Presbyterian Church at Woodbury
July 4, 2021
6th Sunday after Pentecost
PRAYER OF PREPARATION
Almighty God, pour out the spirit of grace and supplication on all who desire it. Deliver us from cold hearts and wandering thoughts, that with steady minds and burning zeal we may worship you in spirit and in truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
PRELUDE “Materna” arr. Cooman
CALL TO WORSHIP
Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised!
Your name, O God, like your praise reaches to the ends of the earth.
We consider your steadfast love, O God, in the midst of worship.
Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised!
CALL TO RECONCILIATION
Remember that our Lord Jesus can sympathize with us in our weakness, since in ever respect he was tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with boldness approach the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Let us confess our sin against God and our neighbor.
PRAYER FOR FORGIVENESS
God, we confess that we are your hesitant people, hesitant to follow Jesus’ way of caring for others, especially the poor and hurting, and hesitant to work for justice for all your children. We are often afraid that if we respond to Jesus’ call we will be overwhelmed and our behavior will alienate family and friends.
Strengthen us to be your faithful people, willing to risk doing your new actions.
Silence is observed
ASSURANCE OF PARDON
In all things we are more than conquerors through Christ who loves us. Nothing in all creation can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Friends, believe the good news of the Gospel!
IN JESUS CHRIST WE ARE FORGIVEN.
PASSING OF THE PEACE OF CHRIST
Our peace comes from knowing how much God loves us in Jesus Christ. With God’s help, we try to love and forgive one another as Christ loves and forgives us.
“The peace of Christ be with you,”
“And also with you.”
ANTHEM “THIS IS MY SONG”
This is my song, O God of all the nations,
a song of peace for lands afar and mine.
This is my home, the country where my heart is;
here are my hopes, my dreams, my holy shrine;
but other hearts in other lands are beating
with hopes and dreams as true and high as mine.
My country’s skies are bluer than the ocean,
and sunlight beams on cloverleaf and pine.
But other lands have sunlight too, and clover,
and skies are everywhere as blue as mine.
So hear my song, O God of all the nations,
a song of peace for their land and for mine.
This is my song for those who live in darkness;
Where warring tribes choose conquest over peace,
Where lives of joy and purpose seems illusive,
Where hatred reigns towards powerless and least.
This is my song til morning breaks with justice
A song of light til dark divisions cease.
This is my prayer, O Lord of all earth’s kingdoms:
thy kingdom come; on earth thy will be done.
Let Christ be lifted up till all shall serve him,
and hearts united learn to live as one.
So hear my prayer, O God of all the nations:
myself I give thee; let thy will be done.
(all children will remain in the sanctuary)
PRAYER OF ILLUMINATION
Open our ears to hear your Word to us from persons we encounter in the Bible who risked following you, often not knowing where they were going. Move us to risk seeking your will for us and to discern what our call to ministry is. For we pray in Jesus name. Amen
Acts 22:6 – 11
6 “While I was on my way and approaching Damascus, about noon a great light from heaven suddenly shone about me. 7 I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to me, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’ 8 I answered, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ Then he said to me, ‘I am Jesus of Nazareth[a] whom you are persecuting.’ 9 Now those who were with me saw the light but did not hear the voice of the one who was speaking to me. 10 I asked, ‘What am I to do, Lord?’ The Lord said to me, ‘Get up and go to Damascus; there you will be told everything that has been assigned to you to do.’ 11 Since I could not see because of the brightness of that light, those who were with me took my hand and led me to Damascus.
Luke 24:13 – 35
13 Now on that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles[a] from Jerusalem, 14 and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. 15 While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and went with them, 16 but their eyes were kept from recognizing him. 17 And he said to them, “What are you discussing with each other while you walk along?” They stood still, looking sad.[b] 18 Then one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have taken place there in these days?” 19 He asked them, “What things?” They replied, “The things about Jesus of Nazareth,[c] who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20 and how our chief priests and leaders handed him over to be condemned to death and crucified him. 21 But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel.[d] Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things took place. 22 Moreover, some women of our group astounded us. They were at the tomb early this morning, 23 and when they did not find his body there, they came back and told us that they had indeed seen a vision of angels who said that he was alive. 24 Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but they did not see him.” 25 Then he said to them, “Oh, how foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have declared! 26 Was it not necessary that the Messiah[e] should suffer these things and then enter into his glory?” 27 Then beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the scriptures.
28 As they came near the village to which they were going, he walked ahead as if he were going on. 29 But they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over.” So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him; and he vanished from their sight. 32 They said to each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us[f] while he was talking to us on the road, while he was opening the scriptures to us?” 33 That same hour they got up and returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven and their companions gathered together. 34 They were saying, “The Lord has risen indeed, and he has appeared to Simon!” 35 Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he had been made known to them in the breaking of the bread.
SERMON “On the Road” Rev. Garnett E. Foster
AFFIRMATION OF FAITH (from a Brief Statement of Faith)
We trust in God, whom Jesus called Abba, Father. In sovereign love God created the world good and makes everyone equally in God’s image, male and female, of every race and people, to live as one community. But we rebel against God; we hide from our Creator. Ignoring God’s commandments, we violate the image of God in others and ourselves, accept lies as truth, exploit neighbor and nature, and threaten death to the planet entrusted to our care. We deserve God’s condemnation. Yet God acts with justice and mercy to redeem creation. In everlasting love, the God of Abraham and Sarah chose a covenant people to bless all families of the earth. Hearing their cry, God delivered the children of Israel from the house of bondage. Loving us still, God makes us heirs with Christ of the covenant. Like a mother who will not forsake her nursing child, like a father who runs to welcome the prodigal home, God is faithful still.
THE SACRAMENT OF HOLY COMMUNION
INVITATION TO THE TABLE
Behold, I stand at the door and knock;
if those who hear my voice open the door, I will come in to them and eat with them, and they with me.
O taste and see that the Lord is good! Happy are all who find refuge in God!
GREAT PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING
Holy God, Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, with joy we praise you and give thanks to your name.
You commanded light to shine out of darkness, divided the sea and dry land,
created the vast universe and called it good. You made us in your image
to live with one another in love.
You gave us the breath of life
and freedom to choose your way.
You promised yourself in covenant with Abraham and Sarah,
told us your purpose in commandments through Moses,
and called for justice in the cry of prophets. Through long generations
you have been faithful and kind to all your children.
Great and wonderful are your works, Lord God almighty.
Your ways are just and true.
Therefore we lift our hearts in joyful praise, joining our voices with choirs of angels,
and with all the faithful of every time and place, who forever sing to the glory of your name:
—Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.
We praise you, most holy God,
for sending your only Son to live among us, sharing our joy and sorrow.
He told your story, healed the sick, and was a friend of sinners.
Obeying you, he took up his cross and died that we might live.
We praise you that he overcame death and is risen to rule the world.
He is still the friend of sinners.
We trust him to overcome every power that can hurt or divide us,
and believe that when he comes in glory, we will celebrate victory with him.
Remembering all your mighty and merciful acts, we break bread and share one cup
giving thanks for your saving love in Jesus Christ. As you raised our Lord from death
and call us with him from death to life, we give ourselves to you
to live for him in joy and grateful praise.
Christ is the bread of life:
—When we eat this bread and drink this cup, we proclaim your death, Lord Jesus,
until you come in glory.
Gracious God, pour out your Holy Spirit upon us and upon these your gifts of bread and wine. Make them be for us the body and blood of Christ that we may be for the world
the body of Christ, redeemed by his blood.
Send us out in the power of the Spirit
to live for others, as Christ lived for us,
announcing his death for the sins of the world,
and telling his resurrection to all people and nations. By your Spirit draw us together into one body
and join us to Christ the Lord,
that we may remain his glad and faithful people until we feast with him in glory.
All this we pray in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who taught his disciples to pray saying…
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 debts, as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. Amen.
WORDS OF INSTITUTION
We give you thanks that the Lord Jesus,
on the night before he died,
and after giving thanks to you,
he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying:
This is my body, given for you.
Do this in remembrance of me.
In the same way he took the cup, saying:
This cup is the new covenant sealed in my blood,
shed for you for the forgiveness of sins.
Whenever you drink it,
do this in remembrance of me.
PRAYER AFTER COMMUNION
you graciously feed us,
who have received these holy mysteries,
with the bread of life and the cup of eternal salvation.
May we who have received this sacrament,
be strengthened in your service;
we who have sung your praises
tell of your glory and truth;
we who have seen the greatness of your love
see you face to face in your kingdom.
For you have made us your own people
by the death and resurrection of your Son our Lord
and by the life-giving power of your Spirit. Amen.
OFFERING OF TITHES & OFFERINGS
God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that by always having enough of everything, you may share abundantly in every good work.
PRAYER OF DEDICATION
Blessed are you, God of all creation. Through your goodness we have these gifts to share. Accept and use our offering for your glory and for the needs of people on Earth. Amen