Sunday, September 6, 2020

There are friends, and there is family. And there are friends that become family.”
-Anonymous

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Good morning FCCG! Our Joys, Concerns and Announcements this week include:

  • Our birthdays and anniversaries this week: Rev. Jim Erickson (September 7), Kara Fenne (September 9), and Sheree Womack (September 11). Let us know if we missed your birthday or anniversary!
  • Although we have resumed meeting at church for services, our weekly bulletin blog will continue for the next 12 to 18 months, so don’t worry if you are in a high risk category and feel safer at home, we’ll still be here for you.

Introit ………………… Who You Are to Me
performed by Chris Tomlin
Introit Selected by Faith DiMaria

CALL TO WORSHIP       
Have you considered God’s grace toward us?
Have you listened to glad news of deliverance?
We are here to receive God’s message.
Our hearts are open to the Word we will hear.
Listen, all who are near and all who are far away;
God is calling us as servants and as saints.
Our souls wait for the refreshment God offers.
Our spirits are filled with great expectation.
Christ is the resurrection and the life.
Whoever believes in him will live and never die.
We hear the teacher calling for us.
Christ unbinds us that we may see and believe.

OPENING HYMN …………………….. #90 Come, Christians Join To Sing

PRAYER OF INVOCATION
God of steadfast love, bring new life to this community of your people.  We are eager to hear your voice and be filled with your Spirit. Bring vitality and purpose to our gathering, that we might be energized and encouraged. Hear our voices, lifted in praise and crying out from our need. Be attentive to our supplications.  Only you can unbind us and set us free.  Amen.

PRAYER OF CONFESSION
To set the mind on the flesh is death. Come now to the promise of life as we confess our sin, and may God have mercy.
May Christ have mercy.
May God have mercy.
Out of the depths we cry to you, O God. Hear our prayers, the confession of our neglect, the admission of our desire to rule in your place. We cry out for forgiveness and new life. We long to know you and to live in reverence before you. By your steadfast love, redeem us from our iniquities and raise us up to serve you, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

WORDS OF ASSURANCE
Hear now these words of assurance:
Jesus says to us, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” Arise, in faith and trust, knowing that God will give life to our mortal bodies through the spirit who dwells in us and among us. We are not slaves to the flesh. We are servants to the Son. Praise God.

Glory Patri ………………………………………. #35

SACRAMENT OF HOLY COMMUNION
We practice open communion. All who declare Jesus Christ to be Lord are welcome to partake. Please use whatever bread and juice or wine you have at home for communion.

Litany Communion Prayer
Let us gather around the table with the offering of bread and wine upon it and the promise of the Living Christ among us.  This is the welcome table of God where all who seek to be at peace with their neighbor and all who seek the mercy of God in Christ are embraced. Come, for we are all invited into this holy mystery.
Jesus said, “I am the bread of life.  All who come to me shall not hunger, and all who believe in me shall never be thirsty.
We remember that on the night of betrayal and desertion, Jesus took his authority as the Christ and offered the bread in thanksgiving and said….
“Take, eat.  This is my body which is given for you.  Do this in remembrance of me.”
In the same way, and by the same authority, Jesus offered the cup in thanksgiving and said,
“Take, drink.  This is my blood of the new covenant which is poured out for you and for many, for the forgiveness of sins.  Do this, as often as you drink it in remembrance of me.”
Come, Holy Spirit. Come.  Open our eyes to the mystery of Christ’s presence in these ordinary things in these our ordinary lives.  May they be for us the very essence of the living Christ in our midst.  Through this broken bread….
We participate in the Body of Christ.
Through the cup of blessing….
We participate in the new life Christ gives.
These are the gifts of God for the people of God.  Come, for all things are ready!

Prayer of Thanksgiving
Gracious and living God, you have made us one in the Body of Christ, and nourished us at your table with holy food and drink.  Thank you for feeding our hunger and relieving our thirst.  Now send us into the world to do the work you have given us to do:  to find the lost and lonely, to heal broken souls, to free prisoners, and make the powerful care.  Grant us strength to persevere in resisting evil, and to proclaim in all we say and do your good news in Christ Jesus our Savior. Amen.

All readings are from the English Standard Version bible.

OLD TESTAMENT LESSON …………………………………………………… I Samuel 18:1-5

Kara Fenne reads the Old Testament Lesson

As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. And Saul took him that day and would not let him return to his father’s house.Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul.And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt.And David went out and was successful wherever Saul sent him, so that Saul set him over the men of war. And this was good in the sight of all the people and also in the sight of Saul’s servants.

PSALTER LESSON ……………………………………………………. from Psalm 8

God, your mercy is upon us as we place our trust in you.

Brenda Valentino reads the Psalter Lesson

I waited patiently for the LORD;
Who inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the pit of destruction,
Out of the miry bog,
And set my feet upon a rock,
Making my steps secure.
He put a new song in my mouth,
A song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the LORD.

God, your mercy is upon us as we place our trust in you.

Brenda Valentino reads the Psalter Lesson

I have told the glad news of deliverance
In the great congregation;
Behold, I have not restrained my lips,
As you know, O LORD.
I have not hidden your deliverance within my heart;
I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;
I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness
From the great congregation.
Do not, O God, withhold your mercy from me;
Your steadfast love and your faithfulness
keep me safe forever!

God, your mercy is upon us as we place our trust in you.

EPISTLE LESSON ………………………………………………………… Romans 8:5-13

Barb Sharp reads the Epistle Lesson

For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.

But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you. So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

HYMN ………………………………………………. #561  It Is Well With My Soul

GOSPEL LESSON …………………………………………………………… John 11:28-44

Becca Clancy reads the Gospel Lesson

When she had said this, she went and called her sister Mary, saying in private, “The Teacher is here and is calling for you.” And when she heard it, she rose quickly and went to him. Now Jesus had not yet come into the village, but was still in the place where Martha had met him. When the Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary rise quickly and go out, they followed her, supposing that she was going to the tomb to weep there. Now when Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet, saying to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.”

When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus wept. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man also have kept this man from dying?” Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, by this time there will be an odor, for he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.” When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”

SERMON ………………………………… Friendship ……………………. Rev. Rebecca Clancy

SPECIAL MUSIC …………………………………… Because He Lives, by Matt Maher

TITHES AND OFFERINGS
Surely the goodness of God overflows in our lives.  Take time to count your blessings.  The works of God are all around us.  In these moments, we have the opportunity to offer ourselves and our substance to extend God’s work on earth.
Make these moments a true dedication to your purposes among us, O God.  May we serve you day and night, in all that we do.  Increase our faith. Increase our witness. All glory be unto your son Jesus Christ.  Amen.

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CLOSING HYMN ……………………………. #459 Lord You Give The Great Commission

Benediction
May the Lord watch between me and thee, while we are apart one from the other, Amen.

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Please keep the following individuals in your prayers this week:

  • Nancy Hannah’s friend, Sharon (illness);
  • The family of Marilyn Cuscaden (death of Marilyn);
  • Jodi Holleran’s mom (illness);
  • Mercedes Nuss (illness);
  • Jess Reddy’s friend, Keeley (illness);
  • Sue Cechner’s friend, John (Illness);
  • Danièle Gibney’s friend, Pam (illness and upcoming surgery);
  • Barb and Dick Sharp’s friend, Alice (illness);
  • Barb and Dick Sharp’s nephew, Jeff (illness);
  • Carolyn and Gail’s son, Collin (unit deployed to Afganistan);
  • Lisa Peterson (illness);
  • Linda Moran (illness);
  • Faith DiMaria’s brother, Steve, and family (illness);
  • The Connolly Family (lots of prayers);
  • Those affected by violence as well as those serving in the military;

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