THE FESTIVAL OF PENTECOST THE SENDING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
May 31, 2020
Pentecost derives its name from the Jewish festival celebrating the harvest and the giving of the law on Mount Sinai fifty days after Passover. Fifty days after Easter, we celebrate the Holy Spirit as God’s presence within and among us. In Acts the Spirit arrives in rushing wind and flame, bringing God’s presence to all people. Paul reminds us that though we each have different capacities, we are unified in the Spirit that equips us with these gifts. Jesus breathes the Holy Spirit on his disciples, empowering them to forgive sin. We celebrate that we too are given the breath of the Holy Spirit and sent out to proclaim God’s redeeming love to all the world.
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.
God of all mercy and consolation, come to the help of your people, turning us from our sin to live for you alone. Give us the power of your Holy Spirit that we may confess our sin, receive your forgiveness, and grow into the fullness of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.
Let us confess our sin in the presence of God and of one another.
Silence for reflection
have mercy on us. We confess that we have turned from you and given ourselves into the power of sin. We are truly sorry and humbly repent. In your compassion forgive us our sins, known and unknown, things we have done and things we have failed to do. Turn us again to you, and uphold us by your Spirit, so that we may live and serve you in newness of life through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.
God, who is rich in mercy, loved us even when we were dead in sin, and made us alive together with Christ. By grace you have been saved. In the name of ☩ Jesus Christ, your sins are forgiven. Almighty God strengthen you with power through the Holy Spirit, that Christ may live in your hearts through faith.
CALL TO WORSHIP
You will be filled with power from on high.
Come, Holy Spirit!
HYMN “Holy Spirit, Truth Divine” LBW #257
The grace of our Lord, 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, on this day you open the hearts of your faithful people by sending into us your Holy Spirit. Direct us by the light of that Spirit, that we may have a right judgment in all things and rejoice at all times in your peace, through Jesus Christ, your Son and our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
WORD God speaks to us in scripture reading, preaching, and song
FIRST READING Acts 2:1 – 21 Filled with the Spirit to tell God’s deeds
A reading from the book of Acts of the Apostles:
1When the day of Pentecost had come, [the apostles] were all together in one place. 2And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.
5Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. 6And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. 7Amazed and astonished, they asked, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? 9Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God’s deeds of power.” 12All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13But others sneered and said, “They are filled with new wine.”
14But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, “Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. 15Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning. 16No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:
17‘In the last days it will be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams.
18Even upon my slaves, both men and women,
in those days I will pour out my Spirit;
and they shall prophesy.
19And I will show portents in the heaven above
and signs on the earth below,
blood, and fire, and smoky mist.
20The sun shall be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood,
before the coming of the Lord’s great and glorious day.
21Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ ”
The word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
PSALMODY Psalm 104:24 –34, 35b
24 O Lord, how manifold are your works!
In wisdom you have made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures.
25 Yonder is the sea, great and wide,
creeping things innumerable are there,
living things both small and great.
26 There go the ships,
and Leviathan that you formed to sport in it.
27 These all look to you
to give them their food in due season;
28 when you give to them, they gather it up;
when you open your hand, they are filled with good things.
29 When you hide your face, they are dismayed;
when you take away their breath, they die
and return to their dust.
30 When you send forth your spirit, they are created;
and you renew the face of the ground.
31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
may the Lord rejoice in his works—
32 who looks on the earth and it trembles,
who touches the mountains and they smoke.
33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
34 May my meditation be pleasing to him,
for I rejoice in the Lord.
35b Bless the Lord, O my soul;
Praise the Lord!
SECOND READING 1 Corinthians 12:3b-13 Varieties of gifts from the same Spirit
A reading from Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians
3bNo one can say “Jesus is Lord” except by the Holy Spirit.
4Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; 6and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. 7To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses.
12For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.
The word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful people.
Kindle in us the fire of your love. Alleluia!
GOSPEL READING John 20:19 – 23 The Spirit poured out
The Holy Gospel according to St. John, the 20th chapter.
Glory to you, O Lord.
19When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 20After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 21Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” 22When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, O Christ.
SERMON The Rev. Leslie M. Richard
HYMN OF THE DAY “Sweet Hour of Prayer”
PROFESSION OF FAITH Nicene Creed
Let us confess the faith of the Church, the faith in which we baptize.
We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen. We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father; through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven, was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary and became truly human. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is worshipped and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
Those who wish to make an offering to St. Matthew may use the green GIVE button on the 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 use the green GIVE button on the website: https://gracebroomall.org/, or mail it to
Grace Lutheran Church, 2191 West Chester Pike, Broomall, PA 19008
The peace of Christ be with you always.
And also with you.
PRAYER OF THE CHURCH
On this day of Pentecost we unite in prayer, asking God to send the Holy Spirit on the church, the world, and all who are in need.
A brief silence.
We pray for the church around the globe:
For the Eastern Orthodox churches, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
For the Roman Catholic church, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
For Protestant and Anglican churches, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
For Pentecostal churches, we pray, Come, Holy Spirit!
For evangelicals and independents, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
For our own congregation, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
And for everyone who searches for you, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
We call on your spirit of unity, giving thanks for our different vocations. That you would activate and utilize the diverse gifts present in your church, that they reveal your love for all, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Restore with your breath the whole creation, especially the lands and waters laden with pollution and the animals whose habitats are threatened.
For your earth, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Send your Spirit on the leaders of nations, on legislators, and on judges, that the people of the world will benefit from your justice and your peace.
For the nations of the world, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Visit all who are suffering, all who feel hopeless, and all who face death. Send healing to those we name here before you (especially)
For all who are in need, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Restore to health those who have contracted the virus. Uphold health-care workers, bless nurses, doctors, midwives, chaplains, counselors, and hospice workers as they care for those in need, grant jobs to those who are unemployed, and assist researchers in discovering a vaccine.
For all who are confronting the coronovirus, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Bless those who are graduating from schools and universities. Give our youth hope for their future.
For our graduates we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Show our nation and our churches how to connect with those whose language we cannot speak.
For the speakers of every language under the sun we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Give us ways during this time apart to share with one another the faithfulness we receive from you. Surprise us with unexpected grace.
For family members and friends, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Hear also the cries of our own hearts.
For ourselves, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
Receive our praise for all who for centuries have gone before us in the faith, from the first Pentecost, throughout Christian history, and up to this week.
That at the end we and all the saints will rejoice in your presence, we pray: Come, Holy Spirit!
With bold confidence in your love, almighty God, we place all for whom we pray into your eternal care; through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
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.
May the One who brought forth Jesus from the dead raise you to new life, fill you with hope, and turn your mourning into dancing.
Almighty God, Father, ☩ Son, and Holy Spirit, bless you now and forever.
HYMN “The Spirit Sends Us Forth to Serve” WOV #723
Text: OneLicense A-701163 Tune: Public Domain
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