April 16, 2017

Liturgy Reflection & Benediction 04.16.2017

Liturgy

Think of a moment when someone that you least
expected to see suddenly stands before you.
A moment when something you had lost is found
again, and you can scarcely believe your eyes.

Think of a moment when your fear was suddenly
proved unfounded and you were surprised by joy.
This morning symbolizes such a moment. We resign
ourselves to the worst, and suddenly life turns around.

So come this Easter morning, to be shaken from your
conviction that nothing can change your situation.

Come if you look at the world and feel overwhelmed
by its chaos, or disillusioned by its promises.

On this morning we remember how Mary went to
anoint a corpse, and was greeted by a Savior.
Come to worship, prepared to see your life and
the world through new eyes.

For Christ is risen, and we are here
in the name of the Father,
of the Risen Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

(written by Ann Siddall)

Community Confession

Lord God, you made the hearts of the
disciples glad with the knowledge of
the resurrection of Jesus, your Son.

Forgive us because, like them, we find the
truth of Easter hard to believe; we are so
easily downcast, and given to despair;
Forgive us, Lord, when we only look inward,
and ignore your signs of hope around us.

Forgive us that, although we claim to live by
the resurrection faith, we so often appear to
believe that suffering is simply a tragedy
and that death is the end;
Forgive us, Lord, when we forget you
are with us through all seasons of life.

Forgive us that we take so much convincing
of the hope you give to the world.

Forgive and hear us, Lord, in the power of
the risen Christ. Take away our crippling
doubts and fears, and through your Holy
Spirit bring us to life in your service;

We pray in the name
of the Father,
of the Risen Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

(modifed from Companion to the Lectionary, Volume 3,
A New Collection of Prayers by Neil Dixon)

Sermon and Reflection

Sermon Podcast 04.16.17 – Easter: Surviving Death

What grace can you find in the desert seasons of your life?
How can God’s unchanging love revise your life story?

Benediction

Go now with your trust in the good Shepherd, and
let us love, not just in words, but in truth and action.

Believe in the name of Jesus Christ, and love
one another, just as he has commanded us.

May God be at your side, even in valleys of wilderness and death.
May the resurrection of Christ Jesus be the cornerstone of your life
through all seasons, and may the Holy Spirit abide in you and tend
to you with love and mercy all the days of your life.

Let us go forth this week, praising and serving
in the name of the loving Father,
of the Risen Son,
and with the presence of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.
(Nathan Nettleton)

Go in peace and live the church.
See you throughout the week.

[Photo by Luca Galavotti @ Flickr]

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