Good morning! This page is intended to both serve as a continuing worship option for those participating in our worship service from home, and to serve in place of print resources during our in-person worship. Following the worship service on Sunday, one or more video recordings from the service will be placed on this page, including the sermon. This may take several hours, due to the time needed to process the videos. We will email the congregation when the recordings have been posted. If you would like to be added to our congregational email list, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- This upcoming Sunday, October 9, we will have our Congregational Business Meeting. We hope you will be present to hear how we have been working together to continue the work of Jesus, to discuss our budget, and to confirm our leadership for next year.
- Backpack Pals are in need of pudding cups, ramen noodles, and we ask that you continue to donate your plastic grocery bags. Thank you!
Call to Worship
Today is World Communion Sunday. We gather as a global community at God’s table. We are invited to recognize the faith, reconciliation, wholeness, and love found here. We are loved, challenged, and accompanied by generations who have shaped our faith, and those around us today. Take a moment. Look around. Notice the surroundings, especially the people. Come, bring all of you to God’s table. No one is turned away!
This morning we will celebrate the Love Feast, which is a remembrance of the Last Supper of Jesus before his death and resurrection. There are 4 parts to a Love Feast. The first part, Preparation and Self-examination, will take place here in the sanctuary.
We will then move to the Fellowship Hall, where our Upper Room has been prepared. There, we will participate in the other 3 parts. The second part is a simple meal and fellowship around the table. The third is feet or hand washing, following Jesus’ example. And finally we will share bread and cup communion.
Following the tradition of our Brethren ancestors, each person may choose for themselves to participate in or to simply observe any, or all parts, of Love Feast.
Let’s enter into worship in prayer.
God of grace, we seek you as we remember the actions and instructions of your Son, Jesus. Help us to feel your loving forgiveness, to know your presence among us as we eat, to experience you in the washing of hands and feet, and to see you in the eyes of our beloved sisters and brothers as we eat this holy meal. In this place, we remember and speak again your word of grace and reconciliation. Amen.
When he had gone out, Jesus said, ‘Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, “Where I am going, you cannot come.” I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.’
Self-Examination & Prayer of Preparation
This scripture is why we call the remembrance of the Last Supper Love Feast. Just as Jesus “had gone out” of that supper, he gives this new commandment, “love one another.” So as we enter into our Love Feast, we take the time to consider when we have not followed that command and seek forgiveness for our harmful actions, or inactions.
In this time of silence we open ourselves to the conviction of the Holy Spirit, and offer our confessions. (silence)
God of Love, your Son, Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, proclaimed for us a new commandment, love for one another. Bind us in that love and help us to become servants for each other. Let conflict dissolve among us, and lead us to forgive one another as you forgive us. Help us to seek you among those who need you most, to empty ourselves of all envy and pride, and to become joyful servants of the poor, suffering, and marginalized. Prepare us to celebrate the obedience of Jesus, whose love led him to the cross. Grant us pardon, and comfort us with the assurance of your Spirit. It is in Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
Then came the day of Unleavened Bread, on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. So Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, ‘Go and prepare the Passover meal for us that we may eat it.’ They asked him, ‘Where do you want us to make preparations for it?’ ‘Listen,’ he said to them, ‘when you have entered the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him into the house he enters and say to the owner of the house, “The teacher asks you, ‘Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ ” He will show you a large room upstairs, already furnished. Make preparations for us there.’ So they went and found everything as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.
When the hour came, he took his place at the table, and the apostles with him. He said to them, ‘I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I tell you, I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.’
Life of the Church
Part of coming together to enjoy a meal is also the sharing of our lives with each other. So it seems right that, at this time, we share together the praises and the prayer requests that we have on our hearts.
Now before the festival of the Passover, Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. The devil had already put it into the heart of Judas son of Simon Iscariot to betray him. And during supper Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going to God, got up from the table, took off his outer robe, and tied a towel around himself. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was tied around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, ‘Lord, are you going to wash my feet?’ Jesus answered, ‘You do not know now what I am doing, but later you will understand.’ Peter said to him, ‘You will never wash my feet.’ Jesus answered, ‘Unless I wash you, you have no share with me.’ Simon Peter said to him, ‘Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!’ Jesus said to him, ‘One who has bathed does not need to wash, except for the feet, but is entirely clean. And you are clean, though not all of you.’ For he knew who was to betray him; for this reason he said, ‘Not all of you are clean.’
After he had washed their feet, had put on his robe, and had returned to the table, he said to them, ‘Do you know what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are right, for that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you. Very truly, I tell you, servants are not greater than their master, nor are messengers greater than the one who sent them. If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.
Invitation to the Feet Washing
The Disciples have followed Jesus for three years, doing some things that they never thought they would dod. And now, they watch him wash feet, kneeling before others like a slave, they are really wondering what is going on… This isn’t what they signed up for. But as Jesus says, “You don’t understand it now, but you will.” What Jesus is teaching them is that God’s way is not simply to impose his will on the world and on other people. God’s way is to love and serve others. It isn’t to make people do things, but to make them want to do things. It to move human hearts so that the world changes in a fundamental way.
And that’s why we still gather to wash feet, uncomfortable though we may be. We need to spend some time in the upper room to be reminded of what kind of God we actually worship, and how we as his followers should act in this world. We aren’t here to force our ideas or our ways on anyone. We are here to love and serve, and to invite others to join us in this work of God. We believe in the power of love, and that true love casts out all fear.
There are stations set up around the Fellowship Hall (show where they are). As you are led, you may move to any station. There is also a cart with a hand washing option that will come to you if you need it. If you have never participated before and would like someone to help walk you through it, there is a deacon located near each station who would be happy to explain and go through feetwashing with you.
So we are invited to wash feet, or hands, and live out this calling to serve, and accept the service of our sisters and brothers as we work together to share the love of God.
For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread, 24and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, ‘This is my body that is for* you. Do this in remembrance of me.’ 25In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.’ 26For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
How would you like to be remembered?
When Jesus considered how he wanted to be remembered, he thought in terms of symbols – bread and wine. He gave his followers a little ritual to practice, to help them remember who he was and how he lived: bread to represent his body, wine to represent his blood, both freely given for them, symbols of his sacrificial love.
Jesus wanted to be remembered as someone who gave himself away in love, who held nothing back, who let himself be broken so that others might be made whole, and who poured himself out so that others might be filled with life, with hope, with peace.
Each of the four gospels in the New Testament remembers Jesus a little differently, but in one way or another, all four remember this – that in the bread and cup, we come to know the truth about him. He is the bread of life. In the shedding of his blood, a new covenant is created. Through bread and cup we come to belong to God and to one another.
“Do this in remembrance of me,” he said. So here we are, with bread and cup before us, to remember again, and give thanks to God.
Responsive Affirmation for the Bread
May this bread remind us of the lengths God has gone to connect us more closely with God and with our neighbors near and far.
Let us speak together the words of faith:
The Bread which we break is the communion of the body of Christ.
Responsive Affirmation for the Cup
May this fruit of the vine remind us of God’s life-giving love poured out for all.
Let us speak together the words of faith:
The cup which we bless is the communion of the blood of Christ.
Prayer of Thanksgiving
We thank you O God, for refreshing us at your holy table. We thank you for our brothers and sisters in this community and around the world. May we always be reminded to see the world through Christ’s eyes, and to work for a time when all may share together at Your table. Amen.