A More Light Congregation

Bethany Presbyterian Church

This Week in Worship

Gathering Prayer

Gracious and all loving God, you call to us across deep waters and dark places.

Yours is the light which guides us and the voice which we follow.

We pray that you would reveal yourself to us as we worship you.

May those without hope be encouraged; those who are sad, cheered;

those who are seeking, find you; and may all things be according to your will.

In the name of your beloved Son we pray. Amen.


Call to Worship

ONE: We gather wondering, 'Where will we find the Babe born in Bethlehem?'

ALL: We will find the Babe in the laughter of children, in the wisdom of grandparents.

ONE: We gather asking, 'where will we find the Child of Christmas?'

ALL: We will find the Child where the needy are gifted with hope,where the oppressed are set free.

ONE: We gather wanting to know, 'where will we find the Christ who has come for us?'

ALL: We will find our Hope where fear is overwhelmed by grace, where hatred is overwhelmed by love, where all people are overwhelmed by joy.

Prayer of Confession

Most holy and loving God, we admit to you and to each other, that we are creatures who either

through foolishness or willfulness often choose darkness instead of light.  Our fears and proud opinions, our short-sighted folly and our pompous wisdom, our deep seated sins and our apathy  towards change and renewal.  Please forgive the darkness and pain we have inflicted on others,

and restore the light-starved hopes and ideals within our own souls.  Trusting your grace, we earnestly pray: “Create in us a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within us.”  Through Christ Jesus our Savior. Amen.


Assurance of Forgiveness

One: My friends, Epiphany is good news!  The Light comes not to sear and blind us but to save us.  Christ Jesus came into this world to save sinners. In his name I declare to you: we are forgiven people.

All: Thanks be to God!


Call and Response




(silence)


Response Hymn #79






January 7, 2018

Epiphany Sunday and Service of Holy Communion

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"Following the LIght"

Lord, have mercy (Lord, have mercy)

Christ, have mercy (Christ, have mercy)

Lord, have mercy  (Lord, have mercy)

Light dawns on a weary world when eyes begin to see all people's dignity.

Light dawns on a weary world; the promised day of justice comes.

The trees shall clap their hands; the dry lands gush with springs

The hills and mountains shall break forth with singing!

We shall go out with joy, and be led forth in peace,

As all the world in wonder echos shalom.

Gathering Prayer

Our Mother-Father God has made us to be One Body with many members. God calls us to share our diverse gifts activated by the one and same Spirit.  God longs for us to be united in love and to manifest the Spirit in our different ways.  Let us gather in this hour to offer praise and worship to our Holy God, who challenges us and calls us to create the Beloved Community.


Call to Worship

ONE: God of the prophets, call to us today.

ALL: Call us into Your ways of love, justice and righteousness.

ONE: God of the poets, remind us again how much You love us.  

ALL: Sing to us Your ways of love, justice and righteousness.

ONE: God of the disciples, teach us how to follow You.

ALL: Teach us Your ways of love, justice and righteousness.

ONE: God of all creation, help us to know Your ways.

ALL: We gather to hear Your call, to sing Your praise, to teach each other, to pray and worship as the Body of Christ.


Prayer of Invocation

God of Righteousness, grant us your life-giving presence. Guide us in our time of worship, and remain with us as we step out into the world, that we may face injustice with courage and love.  May we come to see that the end we seek is a society at peace with itself, a society that can live with its conscience.  The timing may feel off; the end of the road might be out of sight, yet we trust in your holy presence.  

How long? Not long, because no lie can live forever.

How long? Not long, because you still reap what you sow.

How long? Not long. Because the arm of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.

How long? Not long, because you are our God, and all may take refuge in the shadow of your wings. Amen.


Call and Response




(silence)


Response Hymn #79






Preparation for the Word Hymn #155

January 14, 2018

Sermon by Reverend Richard Pyke

"Dr. King's Dream - Then and Now"

Lord, have mercy (Lord, have mercy)

Christ, have mercy (Christ, have mercy)

Lord, have mercy  (Lord, have mercy)

Light dawns on a weary world when eyes begin to see all people's dignity.

Light dawns on a weary world; the promised day of justice comes.

The trees shall clap their hands; the dry lands gush with springs

The hills and mountains shall break forth with singing!

We shall go out with joy, and be led forth in peace,

As all the world in wonder echos shalom.

(placeholder)

Raise a song of gladness, peoples of the earth

Christ has come, bringing peace, joy to ev'ry heart.

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Gathering Prayer

It is time to become focused, not on our wants or complaints but on God: In the silent places of my soul I turn to God, for God alone is our rock and salvation. Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the good news of God, saying the time has come, the realm of God is at hand. The realm of God is not very far from any one of us, for in God we live and, move and have our being.  Jesus said: repent and believe the good news. The time has come.  In the silent places of my soul I turn to God, for God alone is our rock and salvation.


Call to Worship

One: Pecking away at our computers, sitting in a knot of traffic:

All: we wait for you, God of all words, to speak to us.

One: Pacing the halls of a hospital, sitting outside the principal's office:

All: we wait for you, God of comfort, to fill us with hope.

One:  In the silence of each night, beginning each day's new journey:

All: we wait for you, Steadfast Love, for you are our safe place.


Prayer of Invocation

ONE: Gentle and patient  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: Careful and persistent  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: In grieving and in praise  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: Through dawn and midday  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: Unexpected and planned  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: In a still small voice and in power  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: Spontaneous and prepared  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: Willing or protected  ALL: God, you are calling.

ONE: Our God is eager to share with us, wherever we are in our journey. May we be diligent to listen.

ALL: God, you are calling.


Call and Response




(silence)


Response Hymn #79






Preparation for the Word Hymn #155

January 21, 2018

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"Following Jesus Today"

Lord, have mercy (Lord, have mercy)

Christ, have mercy (Christ, have mercy)

Lord, have mercy  (Lord, have mercy)

Light dawns on a weary world when eyes begin to see all people's dignity.

Light dawns on a weary world; the promised day of justice comes.

The trees shall clap their hands; the dry lands gush with springs

The hills and mountains shall break forth with singing!

We shall go out with joy, and be led forth in peace,

As all the world in wonder echos shalom.

(placeholder)

Raise a song of gladness, peoples of the earth

Christ has come, bringing peace, joy to ev'ry heart.

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Centering Prayer

Speak with authority in our lives, Christ.  Speak to us, and to what is in us, so that we might be whole.  Speak to us, with love, with hope, and with strength, so that we might hear you, and know, deep inside, that we are your people, and that you are our God.  Let it be so.  Amen.


Call to Worship

ONE: Brothers and sisters in Christ, what hopes do you bring to worship?

ALL: We bring hope for health and wholeness.

ONE: What afflictions do you bring to worship?  Physical pain?

ALL: From illness and injury.

ONE: Emotional pain?

ALL: From sad and scary life situations.

ONE: Mental pain?

ALL: From dis-ease of many kinds.

ONE: With all of these afflictions, it’s a miracle that any of us have made it to worship this morning!

ALL: But where else would we be?  We yearn to know God’s powerful love and to know that wholeness is possible.

ONE: In today’s gospel, a person with an “afflicting spirit” interrupts Jesus

ALL: and Jesus frees him.

ONE: And where does the miracle of his story and our stories begin?

ALL: When we bring all of who we are -- hopeful, afflicted, bold -- into relationship with the Divine.

ONE: So come, let us enter this sanctuary with our whole selves

ALL: -- hopeful, afflicted and bold --

ONE: Come, let us worship!


Prayer of Invocation

Loving God, reassure us today... whose touch can heal the broken places of life, touch us today...

God of peace, whose spirit of peace can quiet our spirits of confusion and despair,

Forgiving God, whose call to repentance promises grace upon grace, place your mercy in our souls today...

You who heal the sick and liberate the imprisoned, who bring justice in the midst of oppression and strength in the midst of weakness, pour out your spirit of power upon us today.  We confess our need to you, and we turn to you with hearts filled with hope, remembering the promises you have made to us.  May your name be glorified in us and through us.  We ask it through Christ Jesus, he who is our Lord and our Savior.

Amen.


Call and Response




(silence)


Response Hymn #79






Preparation for the Word Hymn #155

January 28, 2018

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"An Unexpected God"

Scripture  

Mark 1:21-28

Lord, have mercy (Lord, have mercy)

Christ, have mercy (Christ, have mercy)

Lord, have mercy  (Lord, have mercy)

Light dawns on a weary world when eyes begin to see all people's dignity.

Light dawns on a weary world; the promised day of justice comes.

The trees shall clap their hands; the dry lands gush with springs

The hills and mountains shall break forth with singing!

We shall go out with joy, and be led forth in peace,

As all the world in wonder echos shalom.

(placeholder)

Raise a song of gladness, peoples of the earth

Christ has come, bringing peace, joy to ev'ry heart.

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Centering Prayer

Lord, Simon Peter said,  "Everyone was looking for you," as you spread your message across Galilee. Whole towns flocked to you with their sick in tow. We as well clamor to find you, now, in our day. Please, Lord, heal us. Take our hand. Help us up.  Amen.


Call to Worship

ONE: Don’t you know? Haven’t you heard?

ALL: God created all things and summons everyone by name.

ONE: Don’t you know? Haven’t you heard?

ALL: No one – nothing – can compare to God’s glory.

ONE: Don’t you know? Haven’t you heard?

ALL: The Lord is the everlasting God, the creator of the ends of the earth, and never grows tired or weary.

ONE: Don’t you know? Haven’t you heard?

ALL: Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength forever and ever.


Prayer of Confession

How can we look at this world and not sing of your praises, O God? The beauty and majesty of the world is overpowering! Yet we have a tendency to take all that you do for us for granted. We treat the world with callous indifference, using its resources carelessly and with little regard to the future. We insist on war as solutions for problems rather than peaceful striving. We turn our backs on people in need; the weak and downtrodden go unnoticed in our midst. We always believe that someone else will care for those in need. How foolish we are, O God! How ignorant we have become! You have given to us all that we need. You have blessed us with the witness of Jesus Christ who came so that we might learn how you would have us live, in honor and peace. Forgive us. Heal our hearts and spirits. Make us fully aware of all our blessings and our responsibilities. Give us again a spirit of joy in serving you. Help us be agents of peace and hope to others. For we offer this prayer in Jesus’ Name. Amen.


Call and Response




(silence)


Assurance of God's Forgiveness

Jesus has come to heal our spirits and our souls. The demons of arrogance, indifference and apathy are being cast out. New life is offered to us in Jesus Christ. Rejoice! Be Glad! For God’s love is poured out to us this day. Amen.


Response Hymn #79






Preparation for the Word Hymn #155

February 4, 2018

Celebration of Holy Communion

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"Freed To Serve"

(placeholder)

Lord, have mercy (Lord, have mercy)

Christ, have mercy (Christ, have mercy)

Lord, have mercy  (Lord, have mercy)

Light dawns on a weary world when eyes begin to see all people's dignity.

Light dawns on a weary world; the promised day of justice comes.

The trees shall clap their hands; the dry lands gush with springs

The hills and mountains shall break forth with singing!

We shall go out with joy, and be led forth in peace,

As all the world in wonder echos shalom.

Raise a song of gladness, peoples of the earth

Christ has come, bringing peace, joy to ev'ry heart.

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Centering Prayer

We do not know what to say, for we are afraid.

But a cloud overshadows us, and a voice comes to us – “this is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” Lord, we listen today!  Amen.


Call to Worship

From seashore to mountain top, from lonely place to hillside, from touching lepers to touching glory, this has been the reign of God.  From baptism’s water to mountain top glory, from calling disciples to the healing of many, from synagogue exorcism to transfiguration, we have moved in the glory of God.  The revealing, the making known, the unfolding, the manifesting, the unveiling,

the unmasking of Jesus.  From the Jordan to the present, from the beginning to here, from the Galilee to this place, let us gather in the transfigured light of God.


Prayer of Invocation

O Holy One, on mountaintops and valley floors you reveal to us the light of your love.  Our heart's desire is to bask in the amazing glory of the divine presence. With each encounter we are changed and transformed.  Draw us nearer that we might receive a double portion of your Holy Spirit.  Help us, O Holy One, to live our lives as a reflection of divine glory.  May we walk among our brothers and sisters as a blessing, bearing light into dark places, hope to displace despair, and love that casts out hate.  Our world is hurting and we need the followers of Jesus to follow more closely.  Maybe then we will hear your voice speaking to us and saying. . .“listen to my Child, the Beloved!” Amen.


Call and Response




(silence)


Response Hymn #79






Preparation for the Word Hymn #155

February 11, 2018

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"Change That Rocks Our World"

(placeholder)

Lord, have mercy (Lord, have mercy)

Christ, have mercy (Christ, have mercy)

Lord, have mercy  (Lord, have mercy)

Light dawns on a weary world when eyes begin to see all people's dignity.

Light dawns on a weary world; the promised day of justice comes.

The trees shall clap their hands; the dry lands gush with springs

The hills and mountains shall break forth with singing!

We shall go out with joy, and be led forth in peace,

As all the world in wonder echos shalom.

Raise a song of gladness, peoples of the earth

Christ has come, bringing peace, joy to ev'ry heart.

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Alleluia, alleluia, joy to ev'ry heart!

Archive - Epiphany 2018