Epiphany 5 – Year B. February 7, 2021

The Delightful Lightness of Being in Light
Service Prayers with Holy Communion
for the Fifth Sunday after Epiphany
February 7, 2021

Since Congregations are returning to “in-person” services at different paces, Worship Ways for will be edited for online use.  “Rubrics” for virtual services will be noted in red;  take and adapt as you need!

Isaiah 40:21–31, Psalm 147:1–11, 20c, 1 Corinthians 9:16–23, Mark 1:29–39 

Call
Leader should speak the lines of the people, along with the Leader’s lines

One:           Good people of the church,
Lift up your eyes and see.
                  Out loud, but muted

All:             Have you not seen?
                  Have you not heard?
Our God greets us here.

One:          Good servants of the Most High,
Open your ears to hear.
                 Out loud, but muted

All:            Have you not seen?
                 Have you not heard?
                 Our God meets us here.

One:          Good children of the light
Open your hearts and know what it means to delight in God.
                 Out loud, but muted
All:            For we have seen, heard and known
                 From the beginning to the end,
                 Our God…is.

Gathering Prayer

Eternal God, Creator of the universe…and then some.
We call on you, you who greet us here.
We give you thanks for making it possible to gather,
and to ponder your eternal mysteries.
Make us, creatures of this time and space,
ready collaborators with your endless grace. Amen.

Confession

One:           What do we hold and treasure most?
Out loud, but muted
All:             Is it the promises of God? 

One:           What captivates our attention?
Out loud, but muted
All:             Is it the grace of God?

One:           God of mercy and grace:
Out loud, but muted
All:             We are vulnerable people who sometimes ignore the vulnerable.
We are broken people
who don’t always pay attention to the world’s brokenness.

Heal us, O God, to make us better healers.
Mend our rifts, that we might be better builders.
Cleanse our hearts, so we can clear out the damage of hurt and oppression.
We are yours, loving God.  Help us to live and to know this better.

Assurance of Pardon

One:            Have you known?  Have you heard?
Our God lifts us up on eagle’s wings
Strengthening us so that we won’t be weary.

The burden of sin is but a far and distant memory
For, through Christ, our sins – all of them – are forgiven.
Out loud, but muted

All:              God is great in strength, mighty in power, and
                    full of endless love for us all.

Invitation to Offering

All of us have our thresholds – places beyond which it can be so difficult to move.

For many of us, generous giving represents such a threshold.
Some of us have given in the same way (sometimes even giving the same amount)
as we did when we were little children.  Some of us have never given before.
Some of us want to give, but have no idea how.

Giving takes so many shapes – but, like any spiritual discipline, the key is for that gift to grow.  We grow in our knowledge of God, we grow in our faith.
If we aren’t already, may we not seek to grow in our giving, as well?
In the time we give?  In the money we give?  In the love we give?

Let us ponder this growth, and may God shine God’s light across the threshold
so that nothing can hold us back from this growth.

Dedication

Out loud, but muted
God of all that is, all we have, all we are – we give.
We give these gifts as we reach across the thresholds of our concerns.
We give these gifts, knowing that they will give so much more.
Through Jesus Christ. Amen.

Holy Communion


Dialogue

May God be with you
Out loud, but muted
And also with you.

Lift your hearts.
Out loud, but muted
We lift them up to God.

Let us give thanks to the God we love.
Out loud, but muted
We freely give God thanks and praise. 

Preface

It is right and meet, beautiful and holy
that we should, in ceaseless joy
Give our thanks and praise to you,
Holy and merciful God,
Through Jesus Christ, our Savior.

And so, in grateful procession of endless praise
With the church that is, was, and shall be forever,
We glorify you, joining this unending song:

Sanctus


          Holy, holy, holy…

Eucharistic Prayer

Holy are you, Eternal One.
You sit above, through, within the circle of the earth
Setting light into being
Casting the stars in the sky
Founding the evolving earth
And all that dwell within it.

Limitless is your power,
And great is your wisdom.
You look upon the lowly
As your most cherished creatures.
You visit upon the downtrodden
With presence, grace, and the promise of eternal justice.

You sent to us your own child, Jesus,
Who reached into unexpected places,
Calling women beyond the limits of their times
Equipping men for nurturing love
Welcoming children into your holy embrace.

And so we recall that on the night of betrayal and desertion,
The light of the world took bread, broke and gave it to the disciples, saying:

The presider lifts the bread.

“This is my body, given for you.
Do this for the remembrance of me.”

The presider places the bread on the table.

And, in like manner, after supper,
Jesus took the cup and after giving thanks give it to them saying,

The presider lifts the cup.
“This is the cup of the new covenant [in my blood]
poured out for you and for all people
for the forgiveness of sins.
Do this, as often as you drink of it,
for the remembrance of me.”

The presider places the cup on the table.

Life’s greatest feast before us,
We excitedly proclaim:
Out loud, but muted

Christ has died
Christ is risen
Christ will come again. 

Dear God, you transform.
You transform all that is before you
So that at the touch of your grace
We are never the same.

Dear God, you illumine.
You bring light to all peoples
Light to the nations
Light into our hearts
Light on your Way.

Dear God, we pray for your Spirit.
Transform, illumine, bless.
Make these ordinary gifts of bread and cup
Into the extraordinary presence of Christ with us.
Out loud, but muted
In so doing,
Hold us as your own
Renew us as your people
For the sake of the world you love.

The presider may lift both the bread and the cup.

For all honor and glory are yours, O God,
Through Jesus Christ,
Who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit in your glorious creation
Both now and forever.  Amen.
The presider places the bread and cup on the table.   

Lord’s Prayer 

           At the conclusion of the prayer, the presider lifts the bread to break it.

Distribution

Post-Communion Prayer

Let us pray:
           Out loud, but muted
We have been fed, Holy One, by your presence.
We have been led, Eternal One, by your light.
May we bask in this glow
Now and forevermore.  Amen.

Benediction

May God bless and keep you
May God’s face shine through yours.
And may the glorious, +  Triune God
Protect and keep you
All the days long.  Amen.

The Delightful Lightness of Being in Light:  Service Prayers with Holy Communion for the Fifth Sunday after Epiphany was written by the Rev. Kaji Douša, a United Church of Christ Pastor who serves as a pastor of  Park Avenue Christian Church in New York City.

Copyright 2021 Faith INFO Ministry Team, United Church of Christ, 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH  44115-1100.  Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education.  All publishing rights reserved.

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