Readings and Prayers, September 6, 2020

Title:Readings and Prayers, September 6, 2020

Hymn    Tis the Gift to be Simple

Opening Sentences

Bless the Lord, my soul!

Clothed with majesty and splendor;

My God, how great you are! 

You are wrapped in light as with a garment;

you stretch out the heavens like a tent,

you build your house above the waters,

you make the clouds your chariot and ride on the wings of the wind;

you make the winds your messengers and fire and flame your ministers.  You set the earth on its foundation, and never will it be shaken. 

Bless the Lord, my soul!  Psalm 104


Confession of Sin 

Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.  

God our Creator and Healer,

We confess that we have sinned: 

We have used creation, not cherished it;

We have lived selfishly and have not cared for the balance of life;

We have been greedy, not sharing earth’s gifts;

And our footprints are heavy, not gentle. 

Forgive us the damage that disturbs our planet.

Grant us the grace to live for the world’s healing and for our own. 

Bless the seasons of the year; may they be restored to your design. 


Almighty God have mercy on you, forgive you all your sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen you in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep you in eternal life.  Amen.  

The Invitatory and Psalter 

Lord, open our lips. 

And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.  

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:  as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever.  Amen.  Alleluia!

The earth is the Lord’s for he made it:  Come, let us adore the Lord. 

Be a light before to lead me; be a guiding star above;

Jesus, may I always know thee, may I always know thy love. 

There is no bird that soars the mountain,

there is no deer upon the hill,

there is no creature of the forest,

but shall sing thy praises still. 

Be a kindly shepherd for me,

keep me safe through all my days;

Jesus may I always know thee,

may I always know thy praise. 

There is no life that swims the ocean;

there is no creature of the sea,

there is no fish within the river,

but proclaims its praise for thee. 

As the day falls into evening,

as the night is lit with stars,

at the ending of life’s journey may thy heavenly peace be ours. 

Let every creature in God’s kingdom,

let every life upon the shore sing praise to God,

the world’s creator,

sing praises now and evermore.  

O Gracious Light 

Psalm 119:33-40

33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes, *
and I shall keep it to the end.

34 Give me understanding, and I shall keep your law; *
I shall keep it with all my heart.

35 Make me go in the path of your commandments, *
for that is my desire.

36 Incline my heart to your decrees *
and not to unjust gain.

37 Turn my eyes from watching what is worthless; *
give me life in your ways.

38 Fulfill your promise to your servant, *
which you make to those who fear you.

39 Turn away the reproach which I dread, *
because your judgments are good.

40 Behold, I long for your commandments; *
in your righteousness preserve my life.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:  as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever.  

The Lessons 

A Reading from the Prophet Ezekiel, Chapter 33, Verses  7-11 

You, mortal, I have made a sentinel for the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from my mouth, you shall give them warning from me. If I say to the wicked, “O wicked ones, you shall surely die,” and you do not speak to warn the wicked to turn from their ways, the wicked shall die in their iniquity, but their blood I will require at your hand. But if you warn the wicked to turn from their ways, and they do not turn from their ways, the wicked shall die in their iniquity, but you will have saved your life.

Now you, mortal, say to the house of Israel, Thus you have said: “Our transgressions and our sins weigh upon us, and we waste away because of them; how then can we live?” Say to them, As I live, says the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from their ways and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel?

The Word of the Lord.    Thanks be to God.  

Canticle H  A Song of Hosea  Hosea 6:1-3 

Come, let us return to our God,*

     who has torn us and will heal us. 

God has struck us and will bind up our wounds,*

     after two days revive us,

On the third day, restore us, *

     that in God’s presence we may live.

Let us humble ourselves, let us strive to know the Lord,*

     whose justice dawns like morning light,

     its dawning as sure as the sunrise.

God’s justice will come to us like a shower,*

     like spring rains that water the earth.                                           

A Reading from Paul’s Letter to the Romans, Chapter 13, Verses 8-14 

Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; You shall not covet”; and any other commandment, are summed up in this word, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law.

Besides this, you know what time it is, how it is now the moment for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we became believers; the night is far gone, the day is near. Let us then lay aside the works of darkness and put on the armor of light; let us live honorably as in the day, not in reveling and drunkenness, not in debauchery and licentiousness, not in quarreling and jealousy. Instead, put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.

The Word of the Lord.   Thanks be to God.    

Canticle N:  A Song of God’s Love  1 John 4:7-11 

Beloved, let us love one another,*

     for love is of God. 

Whoever does not love does not know God,*

     for God is Love. 

In this the love of God was revealed among us,*

     that God sent his only Son into the world,

     so that we might live through Jesus Christ. 

In this is love, not that we loved God but that God loved us*

     and sent his Son that sins might be forgiven.

Beloved, since God loved us so much,*

     we ought also to love one another.

For if we love one another, God abides in us,*

     And God’s love will be perfected in us.                                              

A Reading from the Gospel according to Matthew, Chapter 18:15-20 

Jesus said, “If another member of the church sins against you, go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone. If the member listens to you, you have regained that one. But if you are not listened to, take one or two others along with you, so that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If the member refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if the offender refuses to listen even to the church, let such a one be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again, truly I tell you, if two of you agree on earth about anything you ask, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them.”

The Word of the Lord.  Thanks be to God. 

Sermon                                                                         The Rev. Catherine D. Hicks

The Affirmation 

We believe in God, the creator of all life and beauty, who blesses our journey. 

We believe in Jesus Christ, who lived as a friend and savior to all he met as he traveled, and who ate and laughed, wept and celebrated with them in love.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, who rides on the wind, who strengthens our bonds, and who offers hope eternal. 

We believe in the church, which stands open to all travelers, and bears witness to the everlasting love of God.  Amen.                                             

The Peace                                           

Birthday and Anniversary Blessings, Announcements                                           

The Prayers 

The Lord be with you. 

And also with you.

Let us 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, the power and the glory, forever and ever.  Amen.   

The Suffrages 

Help us, O God our Savior: 

Deliver us and forgive us our sins. 

Look upon your congregation

Give to your people the blessing of peace.

Declare your glory among the nations;

And your wonders among all peoples.

Do not let the oppressed be shamed and turned away;                               

Never forget the lives of your poor.

Continue your loving-kindness to those who know you;

And your favor to those who are true of heart.

Satisfy us by your loving-kindness in the morning;

So shall we rejoice and be glad all the days of our life.                                            

Today’s Collect

Grant us, O Lord, to trust in you with all our hearts; for, as you always resist the proud who confide in their own strength, so you never forsake those who make their boast of your mercy; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.                                           

For Labor Day

Almighty God, you have so linked our lives one with another that all we do affects, for good or ill, all other lives:  So guide us in the work we do, that we may do it not for self alone, but for the common good; and, as we seek a proper return for our own labor, make us mindful of the rightful aspirations of other workers, and arouse our concern for those who are out of work; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.   Amen.  

For Social Justice

Grant, O God, that your holy and life-giving Spirit may so move every human heart, and especially the hearts of the people of this land, that barriers which divide us may crumble, suspicions disappear, and hatreds cease; that our divisions being healed, we may live in justice and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.                                            

For Cities

Heavenly Father, in your Word you have given us a vision of
that holy City to which the nations of the world bring their
glory: Behold and visit, we pray, the cities, towns and villages of the earth.  Renew the ties of mutual regard which form our civic life.
Send us honest and able leaders. Enable us to eliminate
poverty, prejudice, and oppression, that peace may prevail
with righteousness, and justice with order, and that men and
women from different cultures and with differing talents may
find with one another the fulfillment of their humanity;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.                                           

A Prayer for Mission

Lord Jesus Christ, you stretched out your arms of love on the hard wood of the cross that everyone might come within the reach of your saving embrace:  So clothe us in your Spirit that we, reaching forth our hands in love, may bring those who do not know you to the knowledge and love of you; for the honor of your name.    Amen. 

For Joy in God’s Creation

O heavenly Father, who has filled the world with beauty: Open our eyes to behold your gracious hand in all your works; that rejoicing in your whole creation, we may learn to serve you with gladness; for the sake of him through whom all things were made, thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.  

Generous Giver, you pour forth your extravagant bounty without measure upon your whole creation:  Teach us such generosity, that the fruits of our spirit and the works of our hands may build your commonwealth of blessing.  Amen.                                            

For those on our prayer list

Merciful Lord, giver of life and health:  Comfort and relieve all those on our prayer list, especially Roger Covington and Crystal Pannell.   Give your power of healing to those who care for them, that they may be strengthened in their weakness and have confidence in your loving care; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.                                            

For those in the Armed Forces of our Country

Almighty God, we commend to your gracious care and keeping all the men and women of our armed forces at home and abroad, especially those on our prayer list. (Read military prayer list here).  Defend them day by day with your heavenly grace; strengthen them in their trials and temptations; give them courage to face the perils which beset them; and grant them a sense of your abiding presence wherever they may be; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.  Amen.                                            

For those who have died

O God, whose mercies cannot be numbered:  Accept our prayers on behalf of all who have died.  Grant them an entrance into the land of light and joy, in the fellowship of your saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.  

A Collect for Protection 

O God, the life of all who live, the light of the faithful, the strength of those who labor, and the repose of the dead:  We thank you for the blessings of the day that is past, and humbly ask for your protection through the coming night.   Bring us in safety to the morning hours; through him who died and rose again for us, your Son our Savior Jesus Christ.  Amen.                                            

A General Thanksgiving (Read in Unison)

Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we your unworthy servants give you humble thanks for all your goodness and loving-kindness to us and to all whom you have made.  We bless you for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; but above all for your immeasurable love in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ; for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory.  And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies, that with truly thankful hearts we may show forth your praise, not only with our lips but in our lives, by giving up our selves to your service, and by walking before you in holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory throughout all ages.  Amen.  

The Day thou gavest, Lord, has ended 

The Blessing 

As the air sings with songs of glory

As the water flashes with the silver of creation,

As the forests bloom with leave for the healing of nations,

So May God’s light and love

Fill our hearts and souls and minds. 

And the blessing of God our Creator, Jesus our Redeemer, and the Holy Spirit, our Sustainer, be with us now and remain with us always. 



Glory to God, whose power working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine:  Glory to him from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever.  Amen.  

Alleluia, Alleluia!  Go and grow in peace to love and serve the Lord.

Thanks be to God.  Alleluia!  Alleluia!