CELEBRATION OF THE RESURRECTION OF OUR LORD

Seventh Sunday of Easter

May 24, 2020

In these days between Ascension and Pentecost, we gather with the disciples in the upper room, waiting for the Spirit to transform the church around the world. In today’s gospel Jesus prays for his followers and for their mission in his name. Amid religious, social, and economic divisions, we seek the unity that Jesus had with his Father. Made one in baptism, we go forth to live our faith in the world, eager for the unity that God intends for the whole human family.

GATHERING                   The Holy Spirit calls us together as the people of God

CONFESSION AND FORGIVENESS

In the name of the Father, and of the + Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  

Amen.

Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your holy name, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

Let us confess our sin in the presence of God and of one another.

Silence for reflection

Most merciful God,

we confess that we are captive to sin and cannot free ourselves.  We have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done and by what we have left undone.  We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.  For the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us.  Forgive us, renew us, and lead us, so that we may delight in your will and walk in your ways, to the glory of your holy name.  Amen.

In the mercy of almighty God, Jesus Christ was given to die for us, and for his sake God forgives us all our sins.  As a called and ordained minister of the church of Christ, and by his authority, I therefore declare to you the entire forgiveness of all your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the + Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

CALL TO WORSHIP

Alleluia!  Christ is risen!

He is risen indeed!  Alleluia!

HYMN                      “Blest Be the Tie that Binds”                    LBW #370

Public Domain

GREETING

The grace of our risen Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

And also with you.

PRAYER OF THE DAY

Let us pray.      

O God of glory, your Son Jesus Christ suffered for us and ascended to your right hand. Unite us with Christ and each other in suffering and in joy, that all the world may be drawn into your bountiful presence, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Amen.

WORD                 God speaks to us in scripture reading, preaching, and song

FIRST READING    Acts 1:6 – 14

A reading from the book of Acts of the Apostles:

6When [the apostles] had come together, they asked [Jesus], “Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7He replied, “It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority. 8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” 9When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. 11They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
12Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day’s journey away. 13When they had entered the city, they went to the room upstairs where they were staying, Peter, and John, and James, and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, and Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James. 14All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer, together with certain women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, as well as his brothers.

The word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

PSALMODY            Psalm 68:1 – 10; 32 – 35

Let God rise up, let his enemies be scattered;
    let those who hate him flee before him.
As smoke is driven away, so drive them away;
    as wax melts before the fire,
    let the wicked perish before God.

But let the righteous be joyful;
    let them exult before God;
    let them be jubilant with joy.

Sing to God, sing praises to his name;
    lift up a song to him who rides upon the clouds—
    his name is the Lord
        be exultant before him.

Father of orphans and protector of widows
is God in his holy habitation.
God gives the desolate a home to live in;
    he leads out the prisoners to prosperity,
but the rebellious live in a parched land.

O God, when you went out before your people,
when you marched through the wilderness,
the earth quaked, the heavens poured down rain
at the presence of God, the God of Sinai,
    at the presence of God, the God of Israel.
Rain in abundance, O God, you showered abroad;
you restored your heritage when it languished;
10 
your flock found a dwelling in it;
in your goodness, O God, you provided for the needy.

32 Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth;
sing praises to the Lord,
33 O rider in the heavens, the ancient heavens;
listen, he sends out his voice, his mighty voice.
34 
Ascribe power to God,
    whose majesty is over Israel;
and whose power is in the skies.
35 
Awesome is God in his[j] sanctuary,
    the God of Israel;
he gives power and strength to his people.

         Blessed be God!

SECOND READING
      1 Peter 4:13 – 14; 5:6 – 11

A reading from the First Letter of Peter:

12Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that is taking place among you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13But rejoice insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, so that you may also be glad and shout for joy when his glory is revealed. 14If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of glory, which is the Spirit of God, is resting on you.

5:6Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you in due time. 7Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. 8Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour. 9Resist him, steadfast in your faith, for you know that your brothers and sisters in all the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. 10And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you. 11To him be the power forever and ever. Amen.

The word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

In many and various ways God spoke to the people of old through the prophets

But now in these last days, God has spoken to us through his Son.

GOSPEL READING                John 17:1 – 11

The Holy Gospel according to St. John, the 17th chapter.

Glory to you, O Lord.

1After Jesus had spoken these words [to his disciples], he looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son so that the Son may glorify you, 2since you have given him authority over all people, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. 3And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4I glorified you on earth by finishing the work that you gave me to do. 5So now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had in your presence before the world existed.
6“I have made your name known to those whom you gave me from the world. They were yours, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7Now they know that everything you have given me is from you; 8for the words that you gave to me I have given to them, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me. 9I am asking on their behalf; I am not asking on behalf of the world, but on behalf of those whom you gave me, because they are yours. 10All mine are yours, and yours are mine; and I have been glorified in them. 11And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, O Christ.  

SERMON                                                                     The Rev. Karl M. Richard

HYMN OF THE DAY      “This is My Father’s World”            LBW #554

Public Domain

PROFESSION OF FAITH                Apostles’ Creed

God has made us his people through our Baptism into Christ. Living together in trust and hope, we confess our faith.

I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.  I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.  He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary.  He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.  He descended to the dead.  On the third day he rose again.  He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father.  He will come again to judge the living and the dead.  I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen

OFFERING

         Those who wish to make an offering to St. Matthew may use the green GIVE button on our website: www.stmattspringfield.org, or mail it to
St. Matthew Lutheran Church, 400 Lynbrooke Rd., Springfield, PA 19064

         Those who wish to make an offering to Grace may mail it to
Grace Lutheran Church, 2191 West Chester Pike, Broomall, PA  19008

THE PEACE

The peace of Christ be with you always.

And also with you.

PRAYER OF THE CHURCH

Uplifted by the promised hope of healing and resurrection, we join the people of God in all times and places in praying for the church, the world, and all who are in need.

A brief silence.

O God, call your people to be one, as you are one. Unite your church in the truth of your gospel, the love of our neighbor, and the call to proclaim your reign to all people. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

Breathe life into your creation. Guide your people as we explore the mysteries of the universe. We pray for the work of scientists and mathematicians whose skill enriches our understanding (like Nicholas Copernicus, whom the church commemorates today). Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

Make your justice known among the nations of the earth. Give wisdom to our president and our congress, our governors and legislatures. Guide them to protect the vulnerable among us. Redirect those who use violence and greed as weapons. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

Come to the aid of all who suffer. We pray for those who are laden with grief, overwhelmed by anxiety, or struggling without medical care. Uphold all health-care workers who attend to coronavirus patients. Comfort all families and friends who cannot embrace their loved ones at the time of death. We give into your care all the sick, especially those we name here before you (especially…)  Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

As we prepare for Memorial Day, we pray for peace around the world. Bless all who served in the armed forces, grant safety to those currently serving at home or abroad, and assure them of your never-failing strength. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

Raise all your saints to eternal life. Until that day, we give you thanks for the faithful examples of those who have listened to your voice and now rest in you. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

With bold confidence in your love, almighty God, we place all for whom we pray into your eternal care; through Christ our Lord.

Amen.

LORD’S PRAYER

Lord, remember us in your kingdom and teach us to pray,

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 trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever. Amen.

BENEDICTION

The Lord bless you and keep you. 

The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you.

The Lord look upon you with favor and give you peace,

In the Name of the Father, and of the + Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen. 

HYMN              “Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee”                        LBW #551

Public Domain

DISMISSAL

Alleluia!  Christ is risen!

He is risen indeed!  Alleluia!

Go in peace. Serve the Risen Lord.

Thanks be to God.  Alleluia!

From Sundays and Seasons.com. Copyright 2007 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved.  Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #23793 and OneLicense A-701163

May 24, 2020 Worship Service