A More Light Congregation

Bethany Presbyterian Church

This Week in Worship

July 12, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"Resting and Renewing"

Prayer of Preparation

Creator and Lord of all creation, we gather this morning to worship you. Turn our minds away from work, worries and our “to-do” lists so we can bring our whole selves before you. May our songs, prayers and meditations be pleasing to you.

Call to Worship

One: Come, out of your busy lives to a quiet time and place

All: Our souls thirst for some peace and quiet.

One: Come, and rest in the Lord who will restore your souls.

All: Our lives need moments of rest.

One: Come and find the quiet center. Come, be at peace.

All: Praise God who offers to us a shelter and resting place.

Prayer of Invocation

Lord, we gather here this morning with lives that are filled with activity and movement. We rush from one thing to another as though we are going to run out of time to accomplish everything. Help us to let go of the hectic times and the stresses and find our rest in you. Relax our spirits and refresh our souls. Remind us that there will always be things to do and places to go, but that we need the rest of spirit that you provide.


#633  “Praise Ye the Lord”

#626  “As the Deer”

#728  “Somebody's Knocking at Your Door”

July 19, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Richard Pyke

"Answering God's Call"

Prayer of Preparation

Holy God, Spirit of love, come from the four corners and renew us. Chase away our doubts and light a fire in our words and deeds.

Holy God, Fire and Dove, come to your church, enflame our compassion, enlarge our witness and stretch our hospitality.

Holy God, Breath of Joy, renew our worship, touch our hearts,

Bring us peace.

Call to Worship

One: Spirit, soar --

All: Lift us high into the sunlight of joy.

One: Spirit, soar --

All: Carry us on the wings of hope.

One Spirit, soar --

All: Send us to the searching and the hungry.

One: Spirit, soar --

All: Bring us to deeper friendships and ever larger circles of care.

One: Spirit, soar --

All: Raise us on the winds of love and make our songs echo on every mountain and in every heart.

One: Spirit, soar --

All: Make us one. Make us whole.

Prayer of Invocation and Adoration

When we gather each week, we don't want to become so caught up in our own agendas that we miss you. We don't want to sing and pray and read your word just to check those things off of our to-do list. We want to meet with you, Jesus. We want to hear from you, to experience you, to walk away from this place changed because we have been in your presence. So, take this gathering, and make it yours. We are so thankful that you are here with us. Amen.


1 Samuel 3:1-10


#700  "I'm Gonna Live So God Can Use Me"

#442  “Just As I Am Without One Plea”     

#741  “Guide My Feet”


July 26, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"More Than A Miracle"

Prayer of Preparation

We gather as brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ to praise you, O God, and to seek your will for our lives. Interrupt our busyness and quiet our distractions that we might enter fully into your presence and find refreshment for the parched places of our souls.

Call to Worship

One: Some of us are exhausted.

All: We come to rest.

One: Some of us are curious about Jesus.

All: We come to learn.

One: Some of us are hungry.

All: We come to be fed.

One: Some of us are disoriented.

All: We come to pray.

One: Some of us are broken.

All: We come to be healed.

One: We gather around you this morning, O Lord.

All: Teach us, feed us, hear us, heal us. Grant us your peace.

Prayer of Adoration

Life-giving God, you have gathered us here today to praise you. You have made us your people for the purpose of sharing as a community in the joys and sorrows of everyday life, and of working together to bring about your kingdom. Teach us today how to show your love to all the world, and how to share the good news of abundance for all.


Mark 6:33-44


#305 “Come Sing, O Church, in Joy”

#498 “Loaves Were Broken, Words Were Spoken”

#614 “Great Are You, Lord”


August 2, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"Who Is My Neighbor?"

Prayer of Preparation

Lord of justice and mercy, we come to you this day seeking your healing and reconciling love. Help us to be open to your word, your presence, your compassion. Clear our hearts of those things that block your will. Keep us focused on your enabling power so that we, having been healed, may more fully serve you.

Call to Worship

One: God of all Creation,

All: What do you require of us?

One: To do justice,

All: Seeking peace & reconciliation, standing with the marginalized and forgotten

One: To love kindness

All: showing compassion and unconditional caring for those in need

One: to walk humbly

All: following in the steps of Jesus, lifting up not the work of our hands but the power that sustains our service.

Prayer of Confession

Loving God, we know that you have made us for yourself, to love you and to love our neighbors. Yet still we cannot help but live for ourselves, and every day we justify ourselves by our own standards, not yours.  But Lord, you have found us in the ditch, and you have rescued us.  Now soften our hearts to your will, and make us to love others as you have loved us; especially those who are most in need, whom we pass by every day.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

(silent prayer of confession)

Assurance of Forgiveness

One: In God's Kingdom, all are loved for who they are, not what they do; in God's Kingdom, all are forgiven for what they do, and don't; in God's Kingdom, all are welcomed and fed by God's grace and hope.

All: Forgiven, loved, sent forth — we are not far from God's Kingdom! Thanks be to God. Amen.


#612 “We Praise You, O God”

#451 “Open My Eyes, That I May See”

#722 “Lord, Speak to Me That I May Speak”

#742 “We Will Walk with God”


August 9, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Robin Crawford

"The Most Famous Psalm"

Prayer of Preparation

Holy Spirit, guide our worship. Guide our words, our songs, our thoughts and our prayers. Let everything that is of God fill this place and anything that is of us diminish. Help us to remove our agendas and our distractions that we might experience you fully.

Call to Worship

One: We rejoice in the One who leads us beside still waters,

All: and gives us refreshment of soul.

One: Christ our Shepherd shows us the way we should go,

All: so that the name of God will be glorified.

One: Though all manner of evil befall us, we will not be afraid,

All: for the Great Shepherd of our souls is with us.

One: We are never away from the love and mercy of the Lord,

All: and we shall be with him forever and ever.

Prayer of Adoration

Loving Shepherd, you know our names; you care for us.

When we face darkness and death, walk beside us.

When we hunger for your love, fill us with your presence.

When we are fearful, feed us at your table.

May we dwell in the house of goodness and mercy all the days of our lives. Amen.


Psalm 23


#803 “My Shepherd Will Supply My Need”

#274 “You Lord Are Both Lamb and Shepherd”

#661 “Why Should I Feel Discouraged?”


August 16, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Richard Pyke

"You Cannot Live a Lie"

Prayer of Preparation

When we gather in your name, we are changed. There is no way around it. We cannot come together in your presence and not be moved. So, today we surrender to your moving and to the ways you desire to change us. Let this hour together be sacred, and may your name be made great. You are holy, worthy and full of glory. We are humbled to be in your presence. Receive our worship as an offering of praise. It is all for you. Amen.

Call to Worship

Leader: God of the school and God of vacation;

People: God of the hospital and God of the factory;

Leader: God of the mountains and God of the beach;

People: God of controversy and God of peace;

Leader: God of dissension and God of agreement;

People: God of disruption and God of unification;

Leader: God of Jesus and God of the church;

All: God of everything and God of everyone, we gather together to worship and sing your praise. We believe in the church, where we gather to pray, to praise, to serve ... and to try again.

Prayer of Confession

Gracious and loving God, how prone we are to come to worship with our heads full of what we need to do after worship is over and what we should have done before we arrived. Now that we are here, let us be truly present in this place. All of our yesterdays are but memories and all of our tomorrows are out of our reach. What we have is this hour of worship. Let us therefore be here and open to the spirit of the living God through Christ our Lord. Amen.


2 Samuel 12:1-7a

Matthew 8:28-34


#19 “God of Great and God of Small”

#423 “Create in Me a Clean Heart, O God”

#729 “Lord, I Want to be a Christian”


August 23, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"It's Your Call"

Prayer of Preparation

Open our hearts and spirits this day to hear the great good news of your power and presence with all your people. Fill our hearts with rejoicing as the words are proclaimed in song and story. Enliven us and remind us that you are with us, through the pillar of fire, through the magnificent words of the prophets, through the ministry and love of Jesus Christ.

Call to Worship

One: We gather as a people of faith.

All: Knowing we can bring our questions to this haven of safety.

One: We gather as a people of faith.

All: Seeking to follow the footsteps of Christ.

One: We gather as a people of faith.

All: Trusting in the goodness of God. We gather as a people of faith: knowing, seeking and trusting. With our doubts and our certainties, let us lift our voices in praise!

Prayer of Confession

God of abundance and mercy, we acknowledge your presence among us today. Open our eyes to see the path before us.  Deepen our faith to walk with you upon this path. Strengthen our hearts with courage to embark on the journey. Enlarge our hearts with gratitude for your provision along the way. Teach us these things today, O God. In Jesus' name. Amen.


Exodus 3:1-15


#401 “Here in this Place”

#49 “The God of Abraham Praise”

#405 “Praise God for This Holy Ground”


August 30, 2015

Sermon by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

"Don't Just Sit There"

Prayer of Preparation

Creator God, our worship would be worthless if you were not present. We thank you for being here among us. We ask that you make us constantly aware of your presence that we may be willing to follow as your Spirit leads. Give us humility to set aside our best-laid plans and follow you instead. This day is for you. Help us not to make it about us. We surrender to your leading as we worship.

Call to Worship

One: Every generous act of giving is a tribute to God’s love for us.

All: Lord, let us be people of generous and abundant gifts for others.

One: Be ready to listen and slow to react in anger.

All: Lord, prepare us to be peaceful people.

One: Keep your hearts and spirits ready to serve the Lord.

All: Lord, open our hearts to hear and respond to your words of life in ministries.

Prayer of Confession

Holy God, we gratefully acknowledge the gifts you have given each one of us. We praise you for the joy that comes as we walk daily with you. We thank you for your peace and comfort that encourage us in the midst of difficulty. We bless you for your grace, which is sufficient for every need, just as we need it. You have strengthened us, as the apostle Paul said, to wait for the redeeming of all creation and, as we wait, to live as your kingdom people. We ask that you meet us in our gathered worship. Speak, convict, comfort and renew us so that we leave here empowered to proclaim the truth of your love through our every deed and word. Amen.


#509 “All Who Hunger, Gather Gladly”

#744 “Arise Your Light Has Come”

#700 “I’m Gonna Live So God Can Use Me”


September 6, 2015

A Service of Remembrance

Meditations by Reverend Kathryn Pyke

Call to Worship

One: There is something deeper than trouble.

All: It is mercy.

One: God's amazing grace;

All: Carrying, lifting, holding us in all seasons.

One: There is something more powerful than despair.

All: It is mercy.

One: God's amazing love;

All: Seeing us through dark nights, waves of sadness, mountains of grief.

One: There is something longer lasting than pain.

All: It is mercy.

One: God's healing touch;

All: Bringing us hope, leading us to joy, teaching us to sing.

Prayer of Remembrance

God of compassion and might, we come to you on this day to remember. We remember how fragile life is. We remember the devastation that rocked this community of faith and this City of San Bruno five years ago. We remember those who lost their lives that day. We remember the grief, sorrow, fear and hopelessness so many people experienced.

We also remember your constant presence with us. When all else seemed lost, you were our rock and foundation. When we felt lost and alone, you guided us and embraced us with your presence. When we felt despair and the future seemed uncertain, your light and love shined upon us.

And so we come this morning with thankful hearts, giving you praise for your faithfulness. We thank you for the healing we have experienced in our lives and within this community of faith. May the love and hope of this community continue to shine brightly in memory of those we lost. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.

Candle Lighting

We light candles this morning in memory and honor of those who lost their lives in the San Bruno explosion on September 9, 2010, including our beloved Lavonne, Greg and Will Bullis.  We also honor and remember the lives that were lost on September 11th, 2001, and the losses we have experienced in our lives.

Service of Communion


#32 “I Sing the Mighty Power of God

#523 “Gift of Finest Wheat”

#463 “How Firm a Foundation”


Archive - Summer 2015