Liturgy Resources for Sunday October 4, 2020

World Communion Sunday

RCL: Isaiah 5: 1-7, Psalm 80: 7-15, Philippians 3: 4-14, Matthew 21: 33-46

A CALL TO WORSHIP (for Turbulent Times)

One:     As we watch fires rage

ALL:      we are reminded you are calling us to Holy Ground.

One:     As we watch the torrential rains

ALL:      we are reminded you are calling us to forty days of patience.

One:     As we say goodbye to prophets and visionaries

ALL:      we are reminded that it is time for us to put on your mantle

One:     As continue to acknowledge injustice

ALL:      we ask that you give us the courage to worship you this day.

Amidst uncertainty and strife, let us offer our praise to the worship of Your Name.

PRAYER OF INVOCATION (Inspired by Psalm 80: 7-15)

Shine you face upon us, God of Hosts.

Clear out our grounds and break down our walls

So that we might enter into this worship

As people of Your mighty vine.

Rain down Your wisdom upon us

As we pray and sing Your praise.

Look down from Heaven and see:

Our hearts transformed by Your Word.

CALL TO RECONCILIATION

Jesus reminds us that we are to live our lives as vineyards of God’s abundance.  We have not tended that land – we carry the heaviness of stones in our soul, we forget to uproot the weeds.  We built up division with neighbor.  And so let us make our vineyards right, by praying together:

UNISON PRAYER FOR RECONCILIATION (inspired by Isaiah 5)

Tender God, if we are honest with ourselves, we have not tended to our lives the way you would have us do.  There are weeds overwhelming our vineyards, our lives look forlorn and unkept.  We have not cleared out the stones that weigh our hearts heavy; we have not yielded the grapes that come with faithfulness to Your word.  We have built hedges up to guard ourselves against our neighbors and kept out the ones that you would have us share our abundance with.  Forgive us, O God.   Root your love in our hearts again, and sing us back to beloved.  Till our hardened ground until our very hearts soften, and tend to our souls with the gentlest of care.  Break down our walls and allow us to find the bounty in Your vineyard once again.  In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

ASSURANCE OF FORGIVENESS

God’s love is from everlasting to everlasting – there is no season of planting or harvest that remains in time.  God tends the vineyard of our soul and returns us to bountiful abundance.  No vineyard goes uncleared, for in Jesus Christ, we are forgiven.

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE

Turn our hearts, O God.

Turn our hearts and do not let us turn away.

Turn our eyes to see the injustice in the world around us, so that we no longer turn a blind eye.

Turn our ears to hear the cries of the people: mothers wailing for their children, children crying out for peace.  In the whisper and the wail, may we hear the heart of our neighbors need.

Turn our minds to open vessels, prepared to act on the knowledge you instill, so that we might work for your reign in our world.

Turn our feet toward your lighted path and guide our steps that we would know just where to find the lost and lonely whom we can serve.  And as we ask for your vision to guide out path we pray for:

[Insert individual prayer requests here]

And as we pray, we ask that you gather us into Your heart, O Holy One. Gather us in, and turn our hearts toward you.  Amen.

 PRAYER OF DEDICATION/OFFERING

As this season turns, Immortal God, we begin to harvest all that has been planted in our lives. And so we offer these gifts from a place of bounty and celebrate the abundance that we find when we put our faith in you. Bless this harvest and multiply it for the caretaking of your people.  In your holy name we pray, Amen.

BENEDICTION

Go now, into a world that needs tending to ….

Water the dry places, pluck out the fear and hate, and lead the way to abundance with love, compassion, and grace,

Knowing that the God we know as Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer is with you now and forever more. Amen.

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