Worship March 29, 2020 .

March 29, 2020 – Virtual Worship at Calvary Moravian Church.   

Thank you for listening, participating or worshipping with this online resource through Calvary Moravian Church.    If you are able to continue to support our ministries in any way we are most grateful!   

You can mail the office a check (948 N. 21st St. Allentown 18104).   If you would like information about online bank transfer, we can provide that to you. We do have a giving portal through the Moravian Ministries foundation; Please see here if you are interested: https://mmfa.info/calvary-moravian-church-pa-donation-form/. Thank you!

Welcome 

Opening Song –  Days of Elijah (by Robin Marks, used with One License streaming service). 

These are the days of Elijah, Declaring the word of the Lord

And these are the days of Your servant Moses, Righteousness being restored.

And though these are days of great trial, Of famine and darkness and sword,

Still, we are the voice in the desert crying “Prepare ye the way of the Lord!”

Behold He comes riding on the clouds, Shining like the sun at the trumpet call,

Lift your voice, it’s the year of jubilee, And out of Zion’s hill salvation comes.

These are the days of Ezekiel, The dry bones becoming as flesh,

And these are the days of Your servant David, Rebuilding a temple of praise.

These are the days of the harvest, The fields are as white in Your world,

And we are the labourers in Your vineyard, Declaring the word of the Lord!

Behold He comes riding on the clouds, Shining like the sun at the trumpet call,

Lift your voice, it’s the year of jubilee, And out of Zion’s hill salvation comes.

There’s no God like Jehovah.(repeat)  There’s no God like Jehovah, hey!

Behold He comes riding on the clouds, Shining like the sun at the trumpet call,

Lift your voice, it’s the year of jubilee, And out of Zion’s hill salvation comes. (repeat). 

Lift your voice, it’s the year of jubilee, And out of Zion’s hill salvation comes.

CALL TO WORSHIP (adapted from Sanctified Art, Sarah Ares, used with permission). 

We have been in the wilderness—

Discerning and working, seeking and dreaming.

We have been in the wilderness—

Grieving and wondering, praying and hoping. 

We have been in the wilderness—

Longing and running, creating and waiting. 

We have been in the wilderness, but we have not been alone; 

for God walks with us, every step of the way, even in a time of waiting.  

The Psalmist reminds us in Psalm 130 

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
   Lord, hear my voice!Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications!

If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand?
But there is forgiveness with you, so that you may be revered.

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
 
  more than those who watch for the morning,
   more than those who watch for the morning.
O people of God, hope in the Lord!
   For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with him is great power to redeem.

Community Conversations (adapted from Illustrated Ministry, used with permission). 

The psalmist cries out to God from the depths – a place of grief, despair, and deep worry. But as we read on, we can hear how the psalmist has faith things won’t stay that way. The psalmist trusts God will listen to their cries and bring them up from the depths. It won’t be immediate, though. There will be waiting. Waiting is a hard thing to do. The psalmist tells us while they waited, they used that time to repent. Repentance means changing your mind. It’s letting how you see yourself and the world be transformed. It can involve saying good-bye to old things or old ways of living and being. Like the psalmist who wrote this whole song with hope from the depths of pain, we too are waiting.

– What is the hardest thing about waiting?    

– Who do you talk to when you need to share how you feel?     

– How do we wait and still be present this moment?

Silent Prayer of Confession 

PRAYER OF CONFESSION

Gracious God, 

We confess that it is hard to wait.    We wait with varying emotions; anxiety or fear or isolation.   We wait sometimes in great love and compassion, but sometimes that present moment fades and wait anxiously wonder about the future.   In all our emotions, give us your comforting presence.   Remind us that as our spirit waits, it waits in the arms of you, O Lord.   For your love, o God, is a steadfast love, that never abandons or forsakes your people.    And so now, breathe life into these weary bones and grant us a fresh start.   Gratefully we pray, Amen. 

Prayers of the People

INTERCESSIONS IN TIME OF CRISIS – Moravian Book of Worship. 

God of mercy, God of comfort, we come before you in this time of difficulty, mindful of human frailty and need, confused and struggling to find meaning in the face of suffering.

We are grateful that even as we share in the joy of Christ Jesus, we can also share abundantly in comfort in the midst of suffering.

For victims of fire or flood, storm or earthquake, famine or disease,

For those whom disaster has left homeless, injured, or bereaved, 

For refugees and those separated from loved ones,

(The liturgist may add specific petitions relating to the immediate crisis.)

For all who are in danger, trouble, or anguish,

We ask the presence and strength of your Spirit.

Give all who suffer the love that bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

We know that suffering produces endurance, endurance produces character, character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because your love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit.

Be the support of all who give their strength, their skill, and their stamina in a ministry of mercy.

Open our hearts in generosity that we may be partners in their commitment to bring relief.

Where tempers flare and a partisan spirit provokes new hostility, raise up people who have patience and restraint.

Where indifference allows crisis to deepen and suffering to go without relief, awaken deliverers who have zeal and strength.

We pray for those who are engaged in making important decisions in this time, for those who report on these events, and for those who shape public opinion. 

Give them the courage to speak out and the restraint to listen, that together we may discern the truth and hold aloft its light.

Take away the temptation to trust in human power and military solutions, and give us the courage to be your servants to the community of nations.

Direct all governments in the way of peace and justice, that your will may be known and done among the nations. Deliver us from the sins which lead to war and conflict, and strengthen within us the will to establish righteousness and justice on the earth.

We pray for those who are suffering and can make no sense of tragedy.

Help them to turn to the One who embraces us in our lives –even Jesus Christ, who lived and suffered among us.

There is no one who is righteous, not even one, for we have all turned away from you. Make us aware of our common need of a Savior, and remove from our hearts the pride, ambition, and greed that would lead us to enslave and demean other people.

Have mercy on your whole creation. Hasten the day when the kingdom of the world shall become your Kingdom, and by grace make us worthy to stand before you. Amen.

Reprinted or adapted from the 1995 Moravian Book of Worship with the permission of the Interprovincial Board of Communication, Moravian Church in America. © 1995 IBOC. www.moravian.org; e-mail: pubs@mcnp.org. All rights reserved.

Hymn  Breath on Me, Breath of God.  (by Edwin Hatch, public domain) 

Breathe on me, Breath of God, Fill me with life anew,
That I may love what Thou dost love, And do what Thou wouldst do.

Breathe on me, Breath of God, Until my heart is pure,
Until with Thee I will one will, To do and to endure.

Breathe on me, Breath of God, Till I am wholly Thine,
Until this earthly part of me Glows with Thy fire divine.

Breathe on me, Breath of God, So shall I never die,
But live with Thee the perfect life, Of Thine eternity.

Scripture :   John 11:1-44. –  The Death of Lazarus

Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped his feet with her hair; her brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent a message to Jesus, ‘Lord, he whom you love is ill.’ But when Jesus heard it, he said, ‘This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God’s glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.’ Accordingly, though Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus, after having heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was.

Then after this he said to the disciples, ‘Let us go to Judea again.’ The disciples said to him, ‘Rabbi, the Jews were just now trying to stone you, and are you going there again?’ Jesus answered, ‘Are there not twelve hours of daylight? Those who walk during the day do not stumble, because they see the light of this world. But those who walk at night stumble, because the light is not in them.’ After saying this, he told them, ‘Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I am going there to awaken him.’ The disciples said to him, ‘Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right.’ Jesus, however, had been speaking about his death, but they thought that he was referring merely to sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, ‘Lazarus is dead. For your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.’ Thomas, who was called the Twin, said to his fellow-disciples, ‘Let us also go, that we may die with him.’

Jesus the Resurrection and the Life

When Jesus arrived, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, some two miles away, and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them about their brother. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary stayed at home. Martha said to Jesus, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask of him.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Your brother will rise again.’ Martha said to him, ‘I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.’ Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?’ She said to him, ‘Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one coming into the world.’

Jesus Weeps

When she had said this, she went back and called her sister Mary, and told her privately, ‘The Teacher is here and is calling for you.’ And when she heard it, she got up quickly and went to him. Now Jesus had not yet come to the village, but was still at the place where Martha had met him. The Jews who were with her in the house, consoling her, saw Mary get up quickly and go out. They followed her because they thought that she was going to the tomb to weep there. When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.’ When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. He said, ‘Where have you laid him?’ They said to him, ‘Lord, come and see.’ Jesus began to weep. So the Jews said, ‘See how he loved him!’ But some of them said, ‘Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?’

Jesus Raises Lazarus to Life

Then Jesus, again greatly disturbed, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. Jesus said, ‘Take away the stone.’ Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, ‘Lord, already there is a stench because he has been dead for four days.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?’ So they took away the stone. And Jesus looked upwards and said, ‘Father, I thank you for having heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I have said this for the sake of the crowd standing here, so that they may believe that you sent me.’ When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out!’ The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, ‘Unbind him, and let him go.’

Other resources on John 11  Visual Meditation.   Listen at https://vimeo.com/400079553(used with permission by Sanctified Art).  

Message – The Rev. Janel Rice.  

Hymn. Jesus Makes my Heart Rejoice.     ByHenrietta Louise van Hayn (public domain)

Jesus makes my heart rejoice,

I’m his sheep, and know his voice;

he’s a Shepherd, kind and gracious,

And his pastures are delicious;

constant love to me he shows,

yea, my very name he knows.

Trusting his mild staff always,

I go in and out in peace;

he will feed me with treasure

of his grace in richest measure;

when athirst to him I cry,

Living water he’ll supply.

Should not I for gladness leap,

led by Jesus as his sheep?

For when these blessed days are over

to the arms of my dear Savior

I shall be conveyed to rest.

Amen, yea, my lot is blessed.

Benediction.  

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