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  • Writer's pictureLysa Rodriguez

Sunday Worship on October 15, 2023


The Holy Eucharist

20th Sunday After Pentecost (Proper 23A)

October 15, 2023 at 9:30 AM

Celebrant & Preacher: The Rev. Guillermo A. Arboleda, Rector

Deacon: The Rev. Ella Roundtree-Davis, Deacon


Watch the Livestream at www.Facebook.com/StMattSav/Live/





The Holy Eucharist: Rite II



Hymn #7: Christ whose glory fills the skies


1 Christ, whose glory fills the skies,

Christ, the true, the only Light,

Sun of Righteousness, arise,

Triumph o’er the shades of night;

Day-spring from on high, be near,

Day-star, in my heart appear.


2 Dark and cheerless is the morn,

Unaccompanied by thee;

Joyless is the day’s return,

Till thy mercy’s beams I see;

Till they inward light impart,

Glad my eyes, and warm my heart.


3 Visit, then, this soul of mine;

Pierce the gloom of sin and grief;

Fill me, Radiancy Divine!

Scatter all my unbelief;

More and more thyself display,

Shining to the perfect day.


[Words: Charles Wesley, Public Domain. Music: Ratisbon, melody from Geystliche gesangk Buchleyn (1524); adapt. att. William Henry Havergal; harm. William Henry Havergal; Public Domain. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #97757. All rights reserved.]



The Opening Acclamation

[BCP, p. 355]


Blessed be God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

And blessed be God’s kingdom, now and forever. Amen.



The Collect for Purity

[BCP, p. 355]


Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you 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 Christ our Lord. Amen.



Hymn S280: Glory to God

[see also BCP, p. 356]


Glory to God in the highest,

and peace to his people on earth.


Lord God, heavenly King,

almighty God and Father,

we worship you, we give you thanks,

we praise you for your glory.


Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father,

Lord God, Lamb of God,

you take away the sin of the world:

have mercy on us;

you are seated at the right hand of the Father:

receive our prayer.


For you alone are the Holy One,

you alone are the Lord,

you alone are the Most High,

Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit,

in the glory of God the Father. Amen.


[Words: Public Domain. Music: Robert Powell, Copyright © 1985, Church Publishing, Inc. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #28331. All rights reserved.]



The Collect of the Day

[BCP, p. 357, 234]


The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Let us pray:


Lord, we pray that your grace may always precede and follow us, that we may continually be given to good works; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.



A Reading from the Book of Exodus (32:1-14)


When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people gathered around Aaron, and said to him, “Come, make gods for us, who shall go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.” Aaron said to them, “Take off the gold rings that are on the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.” So all the people took off the gold rings from their ears, and brought them to Aaron. He took the gold from them, formed it in a mold, and cast an image of a calf; and they said, “These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!” When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a festival to the Lord.” They rose early the next day, and offered burnt offerings and brought sacrifices of well-being; and the people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to revel.


The Lord said to Moses, “Go down at once! Your people, whom you brought up out of the land of Egypt, have acted perversely; they have been quick to turn aside from the way that I commanded them; they have cast for themselves an image of a calf, and have worshiped it and sacrificed to it, and said, ‘These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!’” The Lord said to Moses, “I have seen this people, how stiff-necked they are. Now let me alone, so that my wrath may burn hot against them and I may consume them; and of you I will make a great nation.”


But Moses implored the Lord his God, and said, “O Lord, why does your wrath burn hot against your people, whom you brought out of the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand? Why should the Egyptians say, ‘It was with evil intent that he brought them out to kill them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth’? Turn from your fierce wrath; change your mind and do not bring disaster on your people. Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, your servants, how you swore to them by your own self, saying to them, ‘I will multiply your descendants like the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have promised I will give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.’” And the Lord changed his mind about the disaster that he planned to bring on his people.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.


Psalm 106:1-6, 19-23

Read responsively by half-verse (at the asterisk).


1 Hallelujah! Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, * for his mercy endures for ever.

2 Who can declare the mighty acts of the Lord * or show forth all his praise?

3 Happy are those who act with justice * and always do what is right!

4 Remember me, O Lord, with the favor you have for your people, * and visit me with your saving help;

5 That I may see the prosperity of your elect and be glad with the gladness of your people, * that I may glory with your inheritance.

6 We have sinned as our forebears did; * we have done wrong and dealt wickedly.

19 Israel made a bull-calf at Horeb * and worshiped a molten image;

20 And so they exchanged their Glory * for the image of an ox that feeds on grass.

21 They forgot God their Savior, * who had done great things in Egypt,

22 Wonderful deeds in the land of Ham, * and fearful things at the Red Sea.

23 So he would have destroyed them, had not Moses his chosen stood before him in the breach, * to turn away his wrath from consuming them.



A Reading from the Letter of St. Paul to the Philippians (4:1-9)

My brothers and sisters, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm in the Lord in this way, my beloved.


I urge Euodia and I urge Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord. Yes, and I ask you also, my loyal companion, help these women, for they have struggled beside me in the work of the gospel, together with Clement and the rest of my co-workers, whose names are in the book of life.


Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.


The Word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.



Hymn #556: Rejoice, Ye Pure in Heart (Verses 1-5)


1 Rejoice, ye pure in heart,

Rejoice, give thanks and sing;

Your festal banner wave on high,

The cross of Christ your King.


Refrain:

Rejoice, rejoice,

Rejoice, give thanks and sing.


2 With all the angel choirs,

with all the saints of earth,

pour out the strains of joy and bliss,

true rapture, noblest mirth. [Refrain]


3 Your clear hosannas raise.

and alleluias loud;

while answering echoes upward float,

like wreaths of incense cloud. [Refrain]


4 Yes, on through life's long path,

still chanting as ye go,

from youth to age, by night and day,

in gladness and in woe. [Refrain]


5 Still lift your standard high,

still march in firm array,

as warriors through the darkness toil,

till dawns the golden day. [Refrain]


[Words: Edward Hayes Plumptre, Public Domain. Music: Marion, Arthur Henry Messiter, Public Domain. All rights reserved.]



The People stand, as they are able, for the reading of the Gospel.

The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ According to St. Matthew (22:1-14)

Glory to you, Lord Christ.


Once more Jesus spoke to the people in parables, saying: “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son. He sent his slaves to call those who had been invited to the wedding banquet, but they would not come. Again he sent other slaves, saying, ‘Tell those who have been invited: Look, I have prepared my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves have been slaughtered, and everything is ready; come to the wedding banquet.’ But they made light of it and went away, one to his farm, another to his business, while the rest seized his slaves, mistreated them, and killed them. The king was enraged. He sent his troops, destroyed those murderers, and burned their city. Then he said to his slaves, ‘The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore into the main streets, and invite everyone you find to the wedding banquet.’ Those slaves went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both good and bad; so the wedding hall was filled with guests.


“But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing a wedding robe, and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding robe?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.”


The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, Lord Christ.



Hymn #556: Rejoice, Ye Pure in Heart (Verses 6-7)


6 At last the march shall end;

the wearied ones shall rest;

the pilgrims find their Father's house,

Jerusalem the blessed. [Refrain]


Refrain:

Rejoice, rejoice,

Rejoice, give thanks and sing.


7 Then on, ye pure in heart!

Rejoice, give thanks and sing!

Your glorious banner wave on high,

the cross of Christ your King. [Refrain]

[Words: Edward Hayes Plumptre, Public Domain. Music: Marion, Arthur Henry Messiter, Public Domain. All rights reserved.]



The Sermon

“Words of Encouragement” by the Rev. Guillermo A. Arboleda, Rector


St. Paul writes to the Philippians, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing the things that you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:4-9).


This passage from the end of St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians is one of the most popular in the whole Bible. For good reason, people love to quote these phrases on artwork, hymns, praise music, t-shirts, mugs, and church programs. They are full of godly encouragement to do what is right and to persevere. But sometimes it is helpful to remember why the Bible is full of this kind comfort and consolation.


St. Paul’s conclusion to this letter features some of the most encouraging words in the New Testament because his audience needed the encouragement. Paul wrote his letter to the Philippians from a prison cell. He was being held in chains because the way he followed Jesus and preached the Good News so offended people and disrupted the social hierarchy. The church in Philippi who received this letter was also being persecuted. Their founding pastor, Paul, had moved on to other church planting missions, and they were trying to hold it together. They faced social and economic pressure to conform to Roman culture instead of standing up for love, peace, justice, and equality. Even their leaders weren’t getting along. Paul encourages Euodia and Syntyche to “be of the same mind in the Lord” (Philippians 4:2). For whatever reason, news of their disagreement had made it all the way to Paul in prison, and he called on them to reconcile for the sake of the church and their witness to the love and peace of Jesus.


In those early days of the Church’s life, there was a lot of pressure to fold, a lot of pressure to give up on living and proclaiming the Good News of Jesus. There was a lot of hardship, a lot of reasons to be discouraged. Everyday life in the Roman Empire was unfair, and being a Christian made it even harder. They were struggling with their faith and with their life in community. They needed a reset.


The Philippian Church needed encouragement. They needed a reminder to rejoice in the Lord always because God’s goodness and power is greater than their sorrows. They needed to know that the Lord Jesus was near to them, that they were not abandoned or alone. They needed to hear that prayer is an antidote to worrying. They needed to hear that God can give us greater peace than anyone or anything else in the universe. They needed to remember to focus on the good, noble, honorable things God was doing in their lives, over and above all their hardships. They needed a reminder to be persistent in the face of challenges, and to seek fellowship with the God of peace.


I wouldn’t say that St. Matthew’s Church is struggling. But St. Matthew’s is facing pressure from a changing world. We could use encouragement too. We have all been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. We have fewer active in-person members and fewer resources. We have a harder time gathering together to do the work God has called us to do. That’s why the church’s Vestry and leadership has been working so hard for the last year to develop a new Strategic Plan for our path forward for the next three years (2023-2026). Many of you participated in one way or another in the process by attending congregational meetings, individual interviews, or other ways of collecting information. Today, we are finally ready to present the results of our work.


Our Strategic Plan includes several themes that came up in most of our congregational meetings this year:

  1. Rebuilding our children’s and youth ministries

  2. Growing relationships among church members

  3. Organizing more service ministries to the wider community

  4. Re-committing to support St. Matthew’s Day Care

  5. Caring for our historic building and grounds.


These are our five ministry priorities for the next three-year period. We tried to consider how to tackle all of these important challenges using the wisdom of Kaleidoscope Institute’s Holy Currencies model. Remember, we believe that money is only one currency that needs to flow through a healthy, sustainable community. The others are time & place, gracious leadership, relationships, truth, and wellness. When all of these are flowing together, we become a community that truly shines the light of Christ.


So we identified a new mission statement for our parish. We know that we need to grow in several of these currencies in order to answer God’s calling for St. Matthew’s. We organized the whole strategic plan around how each objective will help us to grow the Holy Currencies of Internal and External Relationship, Time & Place, Gracious Leadership, and Money. So, the new Mission of St. Matthew's Episcopal Church is “to grow and glow in grace as we work to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ.”


Our leadership teams drew from the words in the Book of Common Prayer, which says, “The mission of the Church is to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ” (p. 855). But we are putting our own spin on it. The key phrase for us is: “To Grow and Glow in Grace.” We want to grow in grace so that we glow grace to everyone who comes into contact with St. Matthew’s Church or its members. We want to Grow and Glow the Holy Currencies of Internal and External Relationship, Time & Place, Gracious Leadership, and Money, so that we can glow Truth and Wellness to one another and to our neighbors.


Simultaneously, we are launching a Pledge Campaign to manage the currency of Money in 2024. We need the help of every member of the congregation to prepare for the mission God has laid on our hearts and the changes we all must make to get there. Some of these changes will be in the ways that we work together on committees. Some will be in how much staff and volunteer work we have available. Some will be in how much money we will need to collect. We recently lost some external grant funding, and it is going to get increasingly difficult for St. Matthew’s to continue paying for a full-time priest. The Vestry, Bishop, and I are talking about how we may need to change my employment status from full-time to part-time at some point in 2024.


To be clear, that is a proactive choice we are trying to make for the benefit of St. Matthew’s in the present and the future. We are not trying to wait until there is no money left or no options left in that department. We are trying to be wise and faithful stewards of this parish’s many gifts, resources, and currencies. We are also trying our best to be transparent with the members of this parish about our tight situation before we make major financial decisions. We are inviting you to be a part of the solution. For the next several weeks, during the Offertory and Christian Education Hour (after worship), we will highlight at least one Currency of our Strategic Plan and Pledge Campaign. We will field questions and invite feedback and work together to adopt this new plan for our future.


Here’s the thing. Change is hard. Change can be scary. Change means breaking old patterns and habits and discovering new ones. But there is no growth without change. Growth means transformation. A seed cannot become a tree without undergoing some serious change. And that change may not always be comfortable or easy, but it is good.


As we launch the 2024 Pledge Campaign and launch the 2023-2026 Strategic Plan, the Vestry, SPT, and I understand that we need to grow and change in order to face the challenges that are coming or that are already here. But we also believe that if we grow in grace, God’s light will glow in this community. If we seek things that are true, honorable, just, and commendable, God will light the path for us. If we rejoice and give thanks, God’s peace that passes all understanding will be with us. God has prepared us for this moment. Nothing we face is greater than God’s love. The Holy Spirit fills this place and these people with her comforting and transforming presence.


Let us pray:

Gracious God, you are always near to us and you never leave us without your peace, which passes all understanding: We give you thanks for inspiring us to seek your will for St. Matthew’s Church through Strategic Planning and Pledging. Send your life-giving Holy Spirit among us and help us to grow and glow in your grace as we prepare for the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead of us; through Jesus Christ our Good Shepherd and Savior. Amen.


Bibliography



The Nicene Creed

[BCP, p. 358]


All standing as they are able, the People pray:


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: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. 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. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He 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.



The Prayers of the People, Form VI

[Adapted from BCP, p. 392]


In peace, we pray to you, Lord God.

Silence


For all people in their daily life and work;

For our families, friends, and neighbors, and for those who are alone.


For Joseph, our president; Brian, our governor; Van, our mayor; Chester, the chair of our County Commission; and all other civic officials; For this community, the nation, and the world;

For all who work for justice, freedom, and peace.


For the just and proper use of your creation;

For the victims of hunger, fear, injustice, and oppression.


For the people of Israel and the Palestinian territories, and for all who are in danger, sorrow, or any kind of trouble;

For those who minister to the sick, the friendless, and the needy.


For all the churches in Savannah, that we may be one as you are one with the Son, and the Holy Spirit; For the peace and unity of the Church of God;

For all who proclaim the Gospel, and all who seek the Truth.


For Michael our Presiding Bishop, Frank our Bishop, Guillermo our Priest, Ella our Deacon, Bertice our Diaconal Intern; and for all bishops and other ministers;

For all who serve God in his Church.


For the special needs and concerns of this congregation, especially for our Day Care’s staff, students, and families, and for those on our Parish Prayer List: Presslyne Abraham, Toya Berry, Mary Bonaparte, Jacqueline Bryant, Lazola Cope, Enrique Davis, Aaron Duplechien, Jr., Charles Gordon, Marva Harris, David Jones, Beverly Kemp, Whitney Kennedy, Sada Maxwell, Renee Nails, Russell Nails, Jeannette Outing, Jewel Wheeler; and those we remember now… [Silence. The People may add their own petitions.]

Hear us, Lord;

For your mercy is great.


We thank you, Lord, for all the blessings of this life, especially for all visitors to this parish, all those celebrating birthdays, especially Shannon Nobles (10/15) and Dana Jenkins (10/17); for those celebrating anniversaries especially Frank & Juray Brown (10/19), Leonard & Dot Law (10/19); and for all other thanksgivings we offer now… [Silence. The People may add their own petitions.]

We will exalt you, O God our King;

And praise your Name for ever and ever.


We pray for all who have died, that they may have a place in your eternal kingdom, especially Mary Bell Williams (aunt of Lazola Cope) and those we remember now... [Silence. The People may add their own petitions.]

Lord, let your loving-kindness be upon them;

Who put their trust in you.


The Celebrant concludes with the following or some other suitable Collect:

Almighty and eternal God, ruler of all things in heaven and earth: Mercifully accept the prayers of your people, and strengthen us to do your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.



Confession of Sin


The Deacon says

Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.


Silence may be kept. All pray together, kneeling, as they are able,


Most merciful God, we confess that 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. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.


The Bishop, when present, or the Priest, stands and says:

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 Peace

[BCP, p. 360]


The peace of the Lord be always with you.

And also with you.



Parish Announcements


2024 Pledge Campaign Oct. 15 - Nov. 19: The 2024 Pledge Campaign has now begun! This campaign is essential for developing an accurate operating budget for the year 2024. St. Matthew's Vestry and Leadership expect the 2024 budget to be especially tight so we appreciate any increase in giving you can offer. We will have church members speaking each Sunday about the importance of giving to support the mission and ministry of our church. On November 19, we will offer thanks to God and bless all the pledges. Paper copies of the Pledge letters, forms, and 3rd quarter giving statements (January - September 2023) were mailed to all members of the church. You may offer your pledges on paper or online at www.tinyurl.com/StMattSav2024!


Vestry Adopts New Strategic Plan for 2023-2026: After months of research, study, congregational meetings, and deliberation, the Strategic Planning Team and Vestry collaborated to finalize and approve St. Matthew's 2023-2026 Strategic Plan. The new Mission of St. Matthew's Episcopal Church is to grow and glow in grace as we work to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ. Our plan is organized by Kaleidoscope Institute's Holy Currencies, meaning we have objectives "to grow and glow" the Currencies of Internal Relationships, External Relationships, Gracious Leadership, Time & Place, and Money. Our 2024 Pledge forms are also modeled off of our Strategic Plan's focus areas. The entire Strategic Plan was mailed to all members of the church and is available to read online at: https://www.stmattsav.org/post/st-matthew-s-2023-2026-strategic-plan.


Adult Christian Education Hour: Beginning on October 8, Fr. Arboleda, Deacon Davis, and others will hold a weekly Christian Education after Sunday worship and the "Coffee Minute," from about 11:00 AM - 12:00 noon. The goal of this time is for adults to engage more deeply in their faith through conversations about a variety of spiritual and educational topics.


St. Matthew’s at the SSU Homecoming Parade on Oct. 21: St. Matthew’s will have a walking unit in the Savannah State University Homecoming Parade on Saturday, October 21 at 9:00 AM. More details to come.


“Why We Are Apart” Symposium on Oct. 28: Sociologist Dr. Bertice Berry is organizing an educational symposium at St. Matthew’s called “Why We Are Apart: The Slave Bible and the Church in Black and White.” This event will take place on October 28 from 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM and feature presentations by St. Matthew’s Rector, Deacon, and Music Director, Dr. Berry, and local historian Hermina Glass-Hill. This event is free and open to the public, both in-person and online. To participate online via Zoom please register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_jiSaCp3GSLulkWcd5o2Fhg


Diocesan Youth Events

  • New Beginnings on Oct. 20-22: New Beginnings, an event for youth in grades 7-9, will take place October 20-22. This event, which helps middle schoolers and young high schoolers center themselves in who they are as God’s beloved children, even in the middle of all the calls on their time, energy, and attention.

  • Happening 108 on Nov. 17-19: Happening is a Christian experience presented by teenagers, for teenagers in grades 10-12 with the help of clergy and lay adult leadership. The Happening Weekend begins Friday evening, November 17 and continues through Sunday afternoon, November 19.

T/W/Th Evening Prayer on Zoom and Facebook: On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, St. Matthew's invites you to pray Evening Prayer with us over Zoom at 5:00 PM. If you want to be in the Zoom call, please join by 4:55 PM using the link in the e-Newsletter.



The Offertory

[BCP, p. 376]


Giving to St. Matthew's:

  1. Mail us a check or money order at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, 1401 Martin Luther King, Jr., Blvd, Savannah, GA 31415; OR

  2. Make a secure online gift to St. Matthew’s and/or automate future gifts at: https://onrealm.org/StMattSav/-/give/now; OR

  3. Text “stmattsav” to 73256 to make a secure online donation through your phone.

NOTE: Donations made online (#2 or #3) through Realm incur a processing fee of about 2.5%. Please consider adding an additional 2.5% to your online gift to cover these costs.


Walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself to us, an offering and sacrifice to God. [Ephesians 5:2]



LEV #96: He is King of Kings


Refrain:

He is King of kings;

he is Lord of lords,

Jesus Christ, the first and last,

no one works like him.

O he is King of kings;

he is Lord of lords,

Jesus Christ, the first and last,

no one works like him.


1 He built his throne up in the air;

no one works like him;

and called his saints from everywhere;

no one works like him.

O he is King of kings;

he is Lord of lords,

Jesus Christ, the first and last,

no one works like him. [Refrain]


2 He pitched his tents on Canaan ground;

no one works like him;

and broke oppressive kingdoms down;

no one works like him.

O he is King of kings;

he is Lord of lords,

Jesus Christ, the first and last,

no one works like him. [Refrain]


3 I know that my Redeemer lives;

no one works like him;

and by his love sweet blessing gives;

no one works like him.

O he is King of kings;

he is Lord of lords,

Jesus Christ, the first and last,

no one works like him. [Refrain]


[Words and Music: Traditional, Negro Spiritual, Public Domain; arr. Horace Clarence Boyer, Copyright © 1992 Horace Clarence Boyer, Church Publishing Inc. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #89814. All rights reserved.]



Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow


Praise God, Praise God, Praise God!

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;

Circling through earth so all may grow

Vanquishing fear so all may give

Widening grace so all may live

Amen.


[Words: Eric H. F. Law, Copyright © 2015 Eric H. F. Law. Music: Old 100th, attributed to Louis Bourgeois, Public Domain. Reprinted with permission from Kaleidoscope Institute. All rights reserved.]



Eucharistic Prayer B

[BCP, p. 367]


The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

Lift up your hearts.

We lift them to the Lord.

Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.

It is right to give God thanks and praise.


It is right, and a good and joyful thing, always and everywhere to give thanks to you, Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. ...


The Celebrant prays a Proper Preface


Therefore we praise you, joining our voices with Angels and Archangels and with all the company of heaven, who for ever sing this hymn to proclaim the glory of your Name:


LEV #255:

Holy, holy, holy, holy, holy Lord God of hosts

Heaven and earth are filled with your glory

Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord, of the Lord.

Hosanna in the highest, hosanna in the highest.


[Music: Grayson Warren Brown, A Mass for Soulful People, Copyright © 1979 North American Liturgy Resources, Published by OCP. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #83420. All rights reserved.]


The people stand or kneel.


We give thanks to you, O God, for the goodness and love which you have made known to us in creation; in the calling of Israel to be your people; in your Word spoken through the prophets; and above all in the Word made flesh, Jesus, your Son. For in these last days you sent him to be incarnate from the Virgin Mary, to be the Savior and Redeemer of the world. In him, you have delivered us from evil, and made us worthy to stand before you. In him, you have brought us out of error into truth, out of sin into righteousness, out of death into life.


On the night before he died for us, our Lord Jesus Christ took bread; and when he had given thanks to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said, "Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me."


After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and said, "Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me."


Therefore, according to his command, O Father,


LEV #260:

We remember his death, We proclaim his resurrection, We await his coming in glory;


[Music: Hezekiah Brinson, Jr., Copyright © 1990 Hezekiah Brinson, Jr. All Rights Reserved.]


And we offer our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving to you, O Lord of all; presenting to you, from your creation, this bread and this wine.


We pray you, gracious God, to send your Holy Spirit upon these gifts that they may be the Sacrament of the Body of Christ and his Blood of the new Covenant. Unite us to your Son in his sacrifice, that we may be acceptable through him, being sanctified by the Holy Spirit. In the fullness of time, put all things in subjection under your Christ, and bring us to that heavenly country where, with Blessed Matthew and all your saints, we may enter the everlasting heritage of your sons and daughters; through Jesus Christ our Lord, the firstborn of all creation, the head of the Church, and the author of our salvation.


By him, and with him, and in him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit all honor and glory is yours, Almighty Father, now and for ever. AMEN.



LEV #264: The Lord’s Prayer

[Compare BCP, p. 364]


And now, as our Savior Christ has taught us, we are bold to sing,


Our Father, which 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 debts, as we forgive our debtors

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.


[Music: Albert Hay Malotte; arr. Fred Bock, Copyright © 1934 (renewed) G. Schirmer, Inc. All Rights Reserved.]



The Breaking of the Bread

Silence may be kept.



The Fraction Anthems

[BCP, p. 364]


Hymn S-152

Alleluia! Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us!

Therefore let us keep the feast! Alleluia!


[Music: Ambrosian chant; adapt. Mason Martens, Copyright © 1971, Church Publishing, Inc. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #52588. All rights reserved.]


This Far By Faith #36:

O Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;

have mercy and grant us peace,

we pray, O Lamb of God.


[Music: Grayson Warren Brown; arr. Larry Adams, Copyright © 1979 Grayson Warren Brown. All rights reserved.]


The Gifts of God for the people of God.



The Distribution of Holy Communion


All baptized Christians of any denomination are invited to come forward to participate fully in Communion. Baptized children may receive at the discretion of their parents.


You may receive Communion kneeling or standing. Please extend your hands forward to receive the Body of Christ (bread). If you would like to receive the Blood of Christ (wine), the minister will take the bread from your hand and dip (intinct) it in the wine for you, then place it in your mouth. If you would only like to receive the bread, you may consume it and return to your seat. If you need gluten-free bread for Communion, please raise your hand when you are at the altar rail.


If you would not like to receive Communion for any reason, please cross your arms over your chest, and the Priest will say a blessing over you.


If you are worshipping online, you may pray to receive spiritual communion using the following prayer:


In union, O Lord, with your faithful people at every altar of your Church, where the Holy Eucharist is now being celebrated, I desire to offer to you praise and thanksgiving. I remember your death, Lord Christ; I proclaim your resurrection; I await your coming in glory. Since I cannot receive you today in the Sacrament of your Body and Blood, I beseech you to come spiritually into my heart. Cleanse and strengthen me with your grace, Lord Jesus, and let me never be separated from you. May I live in you, and you in me, in this life and in the life to come. Amen.



LEV #146: Break Thou the Bread of Life


1 Break thou the bread of life, Dear Lord, to me,

As thou didst break the loaves Beside the sea;

Beyond the sacred page I seek thee, Lord;

My spirit pants for thee, O living word!


2 Bless thou the truth, dear Lord, To me, to me,

As thou didst bless the bread By Galilee;

Then shall all bondage cease, All fetters fall,

And I shall find my peace, My all in all.


3 Teach me to live, dear Lord, Only for thee,

As thy disciples lived in Galilee;

Then, all my struggles o’er, Then, vict’ry won,

I shall behold thee, Lord, The living one.


[Words: Mary A. Lathbury, Public Domain. Music: William F. Sherwin, Public Domain. All rights reserved.]



LEV #155: This is My Body


This is my body given up for you,

this is my blood poured out for you.

This is my body given up for you,

this is my blood poured out for you.

Body of Christ. Amen.

Blood of Christ. Amen.

Body of Christ. Amen.

Blood of Christ. Amen.


[Words: from Mary, Cause of Our Joy; Music: Edward V. Bonnemere; Copyright © 1985, Augsburg Fortress; Amity Music Corporation. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #53415. All rights reserved.]



The Post-Communion Prayer

[BCP, p. 366; Enriching our Worship 2 [2000], pp. 56-57]


Let us pray.


For In-Person Worshippers:

Almighty and everliving God, we thank you for feeding us with the spiritual food of the most precious Body and Blood of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; and for assuring us in these holy mysteries that we are living members of the Body of your Son, and heirs of your eternal kingdom. And now, Father, send us out to do the work you have given us to do, to love and serve you as faithful witnesses of Christ our Lord. To him, to you, and to the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.


For Online Worshippers and Those Receiving Spiritual Communion:

Faithful God, in the wonder of your wisdom and love you fed your people in the wilderness with the bread of angels, and you sent Jesus to be the bread of life. Though we cannot consume now these gifts of bread and wine, we thank you that we have received the sacrament of Christ’s presence, the forgiveness of sins, and all other benefits of Christ’s passion. By the power of the Holy Spirit, may we embody your desire and be renewed for your service through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.



The Blessing of the People



Hymn #345: Savior, again to thy dear Name we raise


1 Savior, again to Thy dear name we raise

With one accord our parting hymn of praise;

guard thou the lips from sin, the hearts from shame,

That in this house have called up on thy Name.


2 Grant us Thy peace upon our homeward way;

With Thee began, with Thee shall end the day.

from harm and danger keep thy children free,

for dark and light are both alike to thee.


3 Grant us Thy peace throughout our earthly life;

peace to thy Church from error and from strife;

peace to our land, the fruit of the truth and love;

peace in each heart, thy Spirit from above:


4 thy peace in life, the balm of every pain;

thy peace in death, the hope to rise again;

then, when thy voice shall bid our conflict cease,

Call us, O Lord, to Thine eternal peace.


[Words: John Ellerton; Music: Ellers, Edward John Hopkins, Copyright © 1942 Lorenz Publishing Company. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE #1039666. All rights reserved.]



The Dismissal

[BCP, p. 366]


Go in peace to love and serve the Lord!

Thanks be to God!




The Parish Prayer List


PRAYER LIST: Presslyne Abraham, Mary Bonaparte, Jacqueline Bryant, Lazola Cope, Enrique Davis, Aaron Duplechien, Jr., Charles Gordon, Marva Harris, David Jones, Beverly Kemp, Whitney Kennedy, Sada Maxwell, Renee Nails, Russell Nails, Jeannette Outing, Jewel Wheeler


BIRTHDAYS: Shannon Nobles (10/15), Dana Jenkins (10/17)

WEDDING ANNIVERSARIES: Frank & Juray Brown (10/19), Leonard & Dot Law (10/19)


RECENT DEATHS: The Rev. Dr. Clarence "Teddy" Williams (9/28/2023), Mary Bell Williams (aunt of Lazola Cope)


May the souls of all the departed rest in peace; and may light perpetual shine upon them. Amen.




Permissions and Credits: This service is reproduced from The Book of Common Prayer 1979 (BCP), Enriching Our Worship 1 (EOW1), The Hymnal 1982 (Hymn), Lift Every Voice and Sing II: An African American Hymnal (LEV), and other sources cited. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture readings are from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) of the Bible.


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